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Comment: Re:This again? (Score 1) 428

by Bruce Perens (#49598949) Attached to: New Test Supports NASA's Controversial EM Drive

OK, I will try to restate in my baby talk since I don't remember this correctly.

Given that you are accelerating, the appearance to you is that you are doing so linearly, and time dilation is happening to you. It could appear to you that you reach your destination in a very short time, much shorter than light would allow. To the outside observer, however, time passes at a different rate and you never achieve light speed.

Comment: Re:Try again... 4? (Score 1) 222

by MightyYar (#49596933) Attached to: Grooveshark Shuts Down

Are you the same guy? Anyway... there is inherent value added when you manufacture something from raw materials. The raw materials themselves are also on someone's property. Sand is not "free" and neither are microchips.

On the other hand, if someone is whistling a song and the song winds its way into your head and you start to whistle the same song, you have not stolen anything, there is no moral hazard, and copying the song was completely free.

Comment: Where we need to get to call this real (Score 1) 428

by Bruce Perens (#49596461) Attached to: New Test Supports NASA's Controversial EM Drive

Before we call this real, we need to put one on some object in orbit, leave it in continuous operation, and use it to raise the orbit by a measurable amount large enough that there would not be argument regarding where it came from. The Space Station would be just fine. It has power for experiments that is probably sufficient and it has a continuing problem of needing to raise its orbit.

And believe me, if this raises the orbit of the Space Station they aren't going to want to disconnect it after the experiment. We spend a tremendous amount of money to get additional Delta-V to that thing, and it comes down if we don't.

Comment: Re:Try again... 4? (Score 0) 222

by MightyYar (#49593273) Attached to: Grooveshark Shuts Down

All it would take is a single act of congress to make all music free. There is no moral argument here, simply one of policy. There is a belief that letting artists control their recordings will lead to more recordings, and so that's what we do. If we decide that doesn't work, or that it isn't worth it, then that government-granted "right" can go away and we are back to the natural order of things.

So I turn the question around on you: in the age of the internet and cheap professional-level recording equipment, justify why music shouldn't be free. It's almost free right now, despite the special rights over the material.

Comment: Re:Only doubles?! (Score 4, Insightful) 160

by jandrese (#49591199) Attached to: US Switches Air Traffic Control To New Computer System
Were you willing to guarantee your projects were defect free? The FAA is an excessively risk adverse organization. In some ways this is good, it's safer to fly from LA to London than it is to drive 10 miles from your house to the airport, even though you're in a metal tube traveling at nearly the speed of sound (so fast that human reaction times are effectively a moot point, once you see an obstacle in your way you are already dead) through all sorts of crazy weather and other challenges. The downside of this is that it is almost impossible to get them to replace a working system, even if the replacement is objectively better than the old one. One problem the FAA runs into on a regular basis is that tertiary technologies (like their network and comms systems) are constantly going obsolete and most of the vendors disappear and the only ones that remain jack their prices up into the stratosphere because they know they have a captive market.

The first rule of intelligent tinkering is to save all the parts. -- Paul Erlich