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Comment Re:Interesting. (Score 3, Insightful) 146

Conventional wisdom is that China props up the North Korean government because if it collapses, China will have 25 million starving refugees at their doorstep (not that they don't already, but for now at least they aren't China's problem).

What actions China considers the best ones to accomplish that goal, and whether they are correct about the efficacy of their approach, is way above my pay grade.

Comment Re:Cool! (Score 4, Informative) 352

Finding them means we can start developing better instruments. Primordial gravity waves are our best shot at understanding the inflationary epoch and understanding the Big Bang itself. This is one of physic's greatest triumphs.

And, of course, it confirms once again that Einstein remains one of the titans of human thought.

Comment Re:Context (Score 1) 280

Free market people believe in the Invisible Hand, and the Invisible Hand is just another god, and that god also loves oil and hates, indeed wants to kill anyone who dares question making profits off of glorious, clean fossil fuels. The Invisible Hand also demands climatologists be expunged and destroyed as the evil monsters they are, and wants to blot the sun, that evil thing, with clouds of healthy wonderful smog. God bless the Invisible Hand, and let us join together to take every climatologist and throw them off a cliff for their evil of questioning the righteous use of beautiful clean fossil fuels.

Comment Re:Context (Score 2, Funny) 280

Well then, that's the problem. God only wants us to produce energy via fossil fuels. The use of non-CO2 emitting fuels is evil Communist plotting. WE should immediately execute anyone who wants to use any source of energy other than oil, they are subhuman fiends. We should pass a law allowing the good citizens of this God-fearing country to anally rape anyone who dares even think about solar panels. Solar panels are Satan's work, and only the righteous use of oil and coal forever can keep the forces of wickedness at bay.

Oh, and we need to kill every single Climatologist, except Roy Spencer, who should be given a quadrillion dollars and fifty hookers ever day. He is practically Jesus Christ.

Comment Re:Let's get real (Score 2) 246

If they want to launch it at us, they've pretty much got to get it small enough to fit in a car.

Not that it really matters anyway -- the NPRK would only launch a nuclear first strike as a form of ritual suicide. MAD still applies, even to nasty little third-world dictatorships, and launching a single nuclear missile (or even a few of them) makes no sense strategically; in a nuclear war you need to knock out your opponent's nuclear response capability or they're going to respond by nuking you to ashes in short order.

If North Korea did decide to nuke someone, they'd be much better served to smuggle the nuke aboard a ship and detonate it in a harbor somewhere; at least then they'd have some fig leaf of plausible deniability. An ICBM launch showing up on every nation's satellites/radar wouldn't leave any room for doubt at all.

Comment Re:Wasn't the C64 just a BASIC interpreter anyways (Score 1) 117

I learned to program primarily on Radio Shack machines (MC-10 and Color Computer, boy that brings back memories). I found the GWBASIC/QBasic interpreters fairly close to the old Tandy/RS variants of Microsoft BASIC. The Commodore interpreter, which was also an MS BASIC variant, still seemed to have some oddities.

The problem with gaming was of course that every microcomputer had its own graphics engine, so it made porting incredibly complex in many cases. Since we're talking about computers that had, at most, 30-odd kb in free RAM, there wasn't much room for graphics abstraction. Commodore's graphics, especially on the C64, with its sprite capabilities, made it very different than the rest of the microcomputers of the time.

But text-based stuff was usually pretty easy, and I remember the adventure writing book, which was pretty cool, and I wrote a few adventure games. It actually taught me a lot about string processing, indexes and counters and the like, so these books did teach some pretty important fundamentals in a way that gave you quick results.

Comment Re:The basic question is answered...but still... (Score 1) 551

You know, you can't just handwave evidence away with "It's a complex system."

If increased CO2 levels are increasing the absorption of solar energy, which you don't seem to deny, then pray tell where the fuck is that energy going, if not into the lower atmosphere and the oceans? Come on, Mr. Smarty Guy, fucking explain how "complex systems" make energy magically fucking disappear. Go on, get to it. Show how "complex systems" somehow allow violations of thermodynamics.

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Mathematics is the only science where one never knows what one is talking about nor whether what is said is true. -- Russell

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