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Comment: Re:Driving is filled with intractible problems (Score 1) 278

by Overzeetop (#48211265) Attached to: Will the Google Car Turn Out To Be the Apple Newton of Automobiles?

“As it turns out, what looks chaotic and random on a city street to the human eye is actually fairly predictable to a computer. As we’ve encountered thousands of different situations, we’ve built software models of what to expect, from the likely (a car stopping at a red light) to the unlikely (blowing through it).

“We still have lots of problems to solve, including teaching the car to drive more streets in Mountain View before we tackle another town, but thousands of situations on city streets that would have stumped us two years ago can now be navigated autonomously,” Urmson writes. (Chris Urmson is head of the self-driving car project at Google)

Smarter people than you have been working on these problems for years already and have made significant progress. Other locations also have research going on. Virginia Tech, for example has a self-driving/autonomous vehicle program that is also working on navigation of complex environments. Hazard collision detection and autonomous steering and pacing is already in production vehicles (and has been for a couple of years).

The good thing about computers is that they can be programmed to fail gracefully, stopping when conditions do not meet the requirements for safe continuation. Unlike humans, who can't figure out when they're too drunk, tired, old, or distracted to drive safely. Everything will come in steps - collision avoidance assistance, then highway autonomy, then known-city autonomy, then full autonomy with driver, and finally full autonomy without driver (passengers w/o driving skills). You won't get that last phase in the next couple of years, but I anticipate it will happen before I'm too old to safely navigate the roads.

Comment: Actually, yes. (Score 1) 157

by Overzeetop (#48211183) Attached to: U.K. Supermarkets Beta Test Full-Body 3D Scanners For Selfie Figurines

You must be a dude. Women's clothes are generally not labeled by measurements but by a non-dimensional number which means almost nothing from brand to brand, and even from year to year. To wit:a young women's clothing store near me recently changed all their sizes. Everything changed by one value (what used to be and 8 is now labeled as a 6). They even had convenient "conversion" charts in the store listing the "old" size, and then a column with the "new" size, exactly one size smaller.

Men's clothes are less variable, especially with pants (though different styles do vary by 2-4 inches in actual measurement/fit). However; shirts are notoriously inaccurate, and a full size difference (M-L or L-XL) is common between manufacturers.

For online shopping, if the vendors could accurately identify the fit (doubtful), it would make for a lot less guesswork.

Comment: Re:Until we upgrade the dumb bunnies (Score 2) 380

Look - if there's one thing that humans need, it's one ass to kick. Some dude to be the top of the pyramid. A face of the effort. A single point for organization. President, CEO, Principal - it doesn't matter the organization, you need a person in charge. And a person to take the fall if things go wrong. What you want is someone organizing and coordinating all of the response to the epidemic (of three). You can call him a Czar, a Director, or whatever - you still want *somebody* in charge. And somebody to fire (and/or crucify in public) if things go wrong.

Comment: Re:Until we upgrade the dumb bunnies (Score 4, Interesting) 380

No, that's not leadership, it's damage control and/or preemptive excuses.

Do you remember the last time Obama declared that we "don't have a plan" because the conditions in Syria were complex and required addition time to evaluate the various options? Yeah, that honesty in leadership went over well, despite the fact that he made it clear that evaluating what was an exceptionally complex set of conditions could go horribly wrong if played incorrectly.

Ebola is just another disease without a (nearly guaranteed) cure. There are others out there, right now, which we know even less about (enterovirus, for example). This one is headline grabbing because you bleed out of your asshole. It's like "Ow, My Balls" but grosser for daytime shock newscasts. I mean, really - a facility takes on a patient with inadequate resources to do so, and fails. We're all somehow surprised.

Instead of stating that hospitals are, generally, bad places to isolate transmitted diseases and recommending facilities and transport set up for such work, we go into shit storm finger pointing mode and massive over-reaction. That's not leadership. That's damage control.

Comment: Until we upgrade the dumb bunnies (Score 4, Interesting) 380

Look, every idiot out there wants to see a "response". Take anyone below the 90th percentile a they won't have the intellectual ability to process any probability less than 1 in 4. It's like the entire airline screening process - people feel safer if they see someone doing something. In reality it does little or no good, but until you figure out how to instantly make people smarter and less gullible you will get irrational panic and calls to "do something."

Comment: Why worry about CFAA? (Score 5, Interesting) 238

by Overzeetop (#48195411) Attached to: Facebook To DEA: Stop Using Phony Profiles To Nab Criminals

If they are violating the TOS, Facebook can simply ban them - no laws required. It's nice they've made a public display of calling them out, and it may suffice as a blanket "first warning" to all operations from the DEA.

And, of course, they could always take affirmative action against them by flagging DEA IP addresses if they should come up, notifying the user of the access violation, suspending the account until it is re-verified, and posting to the persons page that the page may have been accessed by the DEA. That's kicking sand in a bully's face, of course, but it could be done if they were serious about it.

Comment: This sounds rather convoluted (Score 2) 113

by Overzeetop (#48195245) Attached to: Delivering Malicious Android Apps Hidden In Image Files

So I'm going to install an app which is used to open a picture I don't know the origin of and which has been tampered with to append a second app, and if the first app opens the "picture" of choice it then installs another app which triggers a permission request (which they say they can work around).

I'd say this is implausible, but between porn and LOLcats there are going to be some unsuspecting idiots out there who might actually get caught.

Comment: Re:Not my LG... (Score 1) 106

by Overzeetop (#48193793) Attached to: Which Android Devices Sacrifice Battery-Life For Performance?

I'm not sure the G3 should be held up as a poster child for good battery life. I have one, and when it's running full out it can chew through a battery. It's the downside of the hires screen. It's not bad, but under normal conditions I'll be at 35-40% after a full day of use, and if I'm going to be on it continuously I can burn through the battery in 5-6 hours. OTOH, it's got a replaceable battery, so there's never any real battery anxiety. I think the G2 was pretty good with battery life, though.

In a consumer society there are inevitably two kinds of slaves: the prisoners of addiction and the prisoners of envy.