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Comment: Re:ISPs simply need to be regulated (Score 1) 338 338

Tom Wheeler may have connections and we might hate his guts but it's silly to think that the pittance he donated matters. Obama appointed him for political influence, not money. Money in politics isn't the problem, power is. Thinking that lobbyists buy votes is third grade logic. You sound like the people that claim we go to war for oil. It's a convenient lie for people that can't handle the more complex geopolitical power struggles that keep the system running.

The anti 'Corporate Personhood' argument is extremely misguided, dangerous idea. Corporations are fictitious entities composed of people. Anyone can start one. I have a right under the constitution to assemble a group of people and have my speech protected. What about nonprofits? What about industries that genuinely need their interests represented?

Shouldn't an American manufacturing company be able to lobby against trade agreements with outsourced third-world labor (e.g. China)?

The Supreme Court has ruled time and time again that the system is working as intended. If we take money out of politics the problem won't magically go away. Politicians will still be corrupt, wars will still be waged and the average American will still be thrown under the bus. The only difference is that we slide one step closer to tyranny. The solution isn't to take away money, it's to take away power. We need less government, not more.

Comment: So much hype... (Score 2) 49 49

As someone who builds model aircraft, multirotors (aka 'drones'), and flies these things as a hobby -- man this video infuriates me.

These guys really think the FAA is going to let a business fly a flying projectile through the middle of San Francisco using Chinese-made hobby-grade equipment, with no formal airworthiness standards and no understanding of why we have federal airspace in the first place?
Who's going to be responsible when the thing loses a flight controller and it spins out of control into someone's car/house/child? This video is riddled with technical failings.

The worst part of this is a disturbing trend of: 'Hey, let's just ignore all the real-world problems and make a slick video'. Somewhere along the way, all these kids in San Francisco forgot that you need to put in effort before bragging about something.
We don't need social media affixed to toy helicopters, we need real engineering and hard work.

Comment: Re:So much nonsense in terms (Score 1) 258 258

It's funny, but growers usually know more about lighting than most engineers.

Marijuana plants like direct, intense sunlight. Unfortunately LEDs aren't very scalable. As you increase the current they start to run into physical limitations and the efficiency goes to hell. A 100W led may only put out 50lm/W, where a 1W led could put out 100lm/W.

HIDs are actually extremely efficient (Around 100lm/W) and scalable (bulbs go up to 1kw+). To get and equivalent amount of light out of LEDs with some sense of efficiency, you'd need thousands of them. This may be suitable for plants that can deal with indirect sunlight, but it is not ideal for Cannabis.

Comment: Re:Are you kidding (Score 1) 818 818

There seems to be a lot of misunderstanding of American politics by Europeans. You're not supposed to vote directly for leaders; it's by design.

Even a pure democracy is natural rigged to defer to tyranny of the majority. Voters would simply stop voting for taxes until government was bankrupted out of existence. So yes, in that sense, our representitive democracy is working just fine. The general public is notoriously bad at understanding geopolitics, foreign policy, or the economy. I, for one, do not want a majority of Joe Sixpacks in a room deciding if we go to war or not.

As for our two party system, there are a lot of examples of multi-party systems that are a complete failure (Italy). The prime minister needs a majority in both the Senate and House of Deputies which is nearly impossible, so nothing gets done. Obviously you need some balance between a single party system and a pure democracy, go figure. You'd be surprised how effective a benevolent dictatorship can be (e.g. Pax Romana), so our founders tried their best to come up with a reasonable compromise.

That said, corporations do tend to trip up the system, I'll be honest. The US has lobbying groups and campaign finance problems, but those things too have a valid place in government. A business owner should be able to petition the government! Sometimes the corporation is an expert in a subject that the public is not. There should be ways to reconcile these differences but majority rule or restrictions on free speech are not the answer. Regardless, any path should be tread carefully or we risk removing the very safeguards in government that are designed to protect us from ourselves.

Comment: Re:Groovy ... (Score 1) 236 236

If I were to put my money on something, it wouldn't be a non-redundant system with more single points of failure than your average unpatched Windows XP desktop.

The Earth has a vast history of extinction events, conservation or not. Humans have quite successfully endured by 'shifting locations'.

Comment: Re:NIMBY (Score 1) 176 176

It's all because of the the LNT model

There's definitely a lot of evidence that low exposure is not dangerous (beneficial...the jury is out). A lot of the wildlife around Chernobyl had dramatically recovered despite high levels of radiation. I don't think this is unusual -- lots of places on Earth see elevated background radiation and we have a history of cosmic events. Most life probably has some yet-to-be-discovered adaptation mechanism.

We know that high levels of radiation are dangerous but statements like "A million people are 1% more likely to get cancer" grind my gears because they're based on a poor model.

Comment: Re:even a broken clock... (Score 1) 523 523

The counter-argument is that we've changed a lot less than you think.

Transportation, communication and technology may have changed, the country may be a lot bigger and the world a lot smaller, but human nature goes back thousands of years unchanged. The struggle between large and small government goes right back to the Whigs and the Federalists. Our founders, too, stole lessons and concepts of governance from thousands of years before their time when writing the Constitution.

Comment: Fuzzy Hashing (Score 2) 243 243

I would try running all the files through ssdeep.

You could script it to find a certain % match that you're satisfied with. Only catch to this is that it could be a very time-intensive process to scan a huge number of files. Exif might be a faster option which could be cobbled together in Perl pretty quickly, but that wouldn't catch dupes that had their exif stripped or have slight differences due to post-processing.

Comment: Re:Which shows that people don't understand (Score 1) 846 846

Why don't people actually work to solve these things instead of whining about how much water we use or fuel we burn? Drought or not, it shouldn't matter one bit. We're overextended and either need to

A) Kill everyone off
B) Fix the damned problem

Climate change breeds anthrocentrism. The universe is a tough place and we need to fight to survive. Trying to preserve oil or water is no different than putting quotas on how much wood you can burn instead of inventing petrol.

Screw conservation, bring on the technology. Nuclear desalination should have solved this problem 50 years ago.

Comment: Re:local weather (Score 0) 517 517

Yes except weather has and always will be highly variable. Pointing to records that have happened in our short human lifetimes don't tell the whole truth.

Are the number of anomalies increasing? Possibly.
Is looking at the past 100 (short) years of data to justify your climate change theory ethical? No.

Comment: Too big (Score 4, Insightful) 520 520

For the time being, there is no single higher-productivity display for a programmer.

You can currently buy a 2560x1440 27" display for around $350. The Seiki display they refer to is actually two 1920x2160 panels stitched together and limited to a painful 30hz. Second, the monitor is not 4k, it's 3840x2160 which is only UHD. 4k is 4096x2160.

Finally, this is a nearly 40 inch display. They look ridiculous as a computer monitor and the ergonomics suck.

Just give us 4k in a 27-30" form factor for people that aren't blind. I'm amazed that phones can have higher pixel densities than computer monitors.

Comment: Re:Goodbye Server Admins (Score 5, Insightful) 152 152

Sysadmins are worried about a lot more than how fast something is for development.

As a DevOps minded person who does code and understands hardware very well, Amazon and Rackspace are both a pile of garbage. They run on 4-year old Xeons that have been split 30 different ways. There are major IO contention issues. Snapshots take hours. SSDs cost thousands a month. They lock you into their service by using proprietary standards (e.g. RDS disables external replication). They come with little to no SLA.

Secondly, we've got privacy and security issues to worry about, regulations like HIPAA, PCI compliance, backups, redundancy, failover, documentation and continuity of business planning. We'll probably still be working for the company long after Amazon has gone out of business and the development team has been replaced or quit.

So, please, forgive your admin if he gets upset. A lot of us are in it for the long game and prefer not to shit all over our employer so they can continue to do business in the future.

Comment: Get the real number (Score 2) 497 497

If you're up for it, just run the calls through an Asterisk server running off a 800 number or PRI from a provider that actually gives you the real caller data.

At that point you'll have the real ANI instead of the CPN (caller ID). Grab that number, track down who owns it, then get a lawyer to serve them with a cease and desist.

Comment: Re:Why put the automation in if not to use it? (Score 4, Insightful) 270 270

If it were so easy to just automate extreme failures, websites like Google, Facebook, and Amazon would go down a lot less often. Unfortunately despite thousands of employees with extreme technical skill, there are still mistakes that bring them down from time-to-time. If we didn't have human SREs or System Administrators, things would be a lot worse. A computer doesn't have the analytics skill of a pilot and never will unless we end up with a singularity.

We don't have strong AI yet and pilots will never just "sit down with a programmer". Automation has to be tested thousands of times across thousands of scenarios in different aircraft and conditions for decades. Even then, there's always the chance that some snippet of code is waiting to kill a plane full of people because it got the wrong set of sensor inputs.

You will have many recoverable tape errors.