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Comment Re:"never to have worked a day in his life," ... (Score 1) 55

I need to find one of those jobs where you get paid for not working.

No, you need to find something that you're good enough at doing that you can complete sufficiently valuable work in a reasonable time. Clearly, your current work is not something that you're good at, and you need to do something more suited to your actual skills, not to what it says on your CV.

substituting hours for skill is never a good trade off.

Comment Re:You're looking in the wrong direction (Score 1) 395

It's all there.

Then where are the money-making power plants?

I've been watching this sort of bullshit since Pons & Fleischmann. It really isn't worth the effort of following up on. Another new bullshit artist, another pile of obfuscated (or misunderstood, "not even wrong" physics, and onther bunch of people suckered by the bullshit.

Start with the power plant - just a few megawatts - on stilts in an empty field so we can see that there is nothing going in "behind the curtain" and there is an unmistakable amount of energy coming out. It's not difficult to ask for. It's not happened yet, and I don't think it's going to happen. At least, not from these bullshit artists.

Comment Re:What is UNUSUAL (Score 1) 264

Both the women in question are adults and both have said that they do not wish Assange to be prosecuted.

... which means precisely nothing.

IT may seem odd to your jurisdiction, but in Britain, prosecution is carried out by a branch of the state, who will frequently disregard the opinions of victims, particularly in sexual assault cases, because there have been far too many cases where a victim has been pressured to retract a complaint by the assailant, friends or family of the assailant, or for their own reasons.

Don't get me wrong - the Assange case stinks to high heavens of political interference. But this aspect of it is not strange. At least, to my knowledge of British laws and practices. I can't comment on Sweden's practices, but I wouldn't be in the least surprised about it form them.

Comment Re:Get a business partner (Score 1) 144

I really would prefer to have constant connectivity while out there

If you're going to want "constant connectivity", then you're not going to be very "out there". If you're in North America (I don't think it's been mentioned ; I don't think it really matters) then you've got some reasonable sized areas of wilderness to play with, but here in Scotland, you only need to walk 5 to 10 miles (say, 1.5 - 3 hours, with breaks) to get out of cell phone service. That's easy to do.

Cell phone service is installed to make money from people using the service. If there aren't enough people using the service to make sufficient money, then the tower won't be installed (or the temporary testing unit won't be replaced with a permanent one. So if you've got cell phone service, then you're talking about being "out there effectively next to permanent housing, or a fairly busy road. Get onto a road which carries two or three cars each way per day and you're not going to have cell phone service for more than a few miles.

When I go hill walking (normally day tripping with the wife, but occasionally for several days on my own), I find I've normally lost service after an hour or so of walking, at which point I turn the phone off (why waste battery?) for the rest of the day. Occasionally I'll try sending a text message to a friend when I get to the summit - better lines of sight - but that remains pretty unlikely.

Comment Re:Boycott, Divest, and Sanction (Score 1) 120

but as an American I have to say 13 or 14 centuries is a pretty damn long time to occupy a piece of land.

I am sure that there are many American "Indians" who would agree with you, and look back at their hundred-odd centuries of inhabiting the Americans before being kicked out by white-skinned Europeans.

This is an American site.

I thought that the American site is slashdot.us, and that this is the international site. There were no passport checks on entry.

Submission + - Scottish Universities use computer gaming to model drug-resistant TB

RockDoctor writes: The BBC report that medical researchers at one Scottish university have teamed up with computing students at another Scottish university to develop a game which will help to model the treatment of tuberculosis.

Drug-resistant TB is an increasing problem around the world, but there are drugs in the pipeline to treat it. However both experience and medical common sense (based, as is everything in biology, on evolution) shows that to prevent the evolution of new resistances, drugs should be applied in combinations, and those combinations should be varied. With 10 drugs in the pipeline, that's potentially 90 combinations of two drugs and 720 combinations of three. That is to many to perform clinical trials on.

So, the medics and medical chemists at Saint Andrews turned to the nearby Abertay University (well-known for computing and gaming tuition, a mere 581 years after Saint Andrews was founded) to develop a game that models some of the human interactions involved in drug treatment, to try to understand better which combinations of treatments would be more effective at treating TB, and preventing the establishment of more drug resistant strains. As one of the sound designers says :

For the team's sound designer Mazen Magzoub, project Sanitarium has a special resonance. He's from Sudan.
"There isn't enough medication," he says.
"And even when there is enough medication the nature of living in Sudan does not allow the patient to continue (treatment) for the prescribed period.
"And that makes the tuberculosis bacteria tolerant towards that certain type of antibiotic.
"That's basically the challenge in the developing world."

The game is "Sanitarium."

Comment Panspermia - ducking the question. (Score 1) 105

All panspermia discussions strive to avoid being seen to duck the difficult question : how did life first originate anywhere? Even if you prove beyond doubt that Sol organisms are derived form (e.g.) Van Maaanen's Star organisms, as are Banardians and ... you still have the problem of finding out how originated the first time.

While OOL (Origin Of Life) is by no means a settled question on Earth, we do at least have good evidence of what happened here. Otherwise, being able to determine that life originated in a cluster which got destroyed 3 billion years ago by a GRB is unlikely to leave much tangible evidence.

If it can happen anywhere, it could happen repeatedly. And so multiple civilisations is my bet, and they just learned to keep quiet around the Primitives.

Everyone is dead, or elsewhere remains on the list of possibilities.

Comment Re:Mankind and aliens will prefer orbital colonies (Score 1) 105

They could simulate normal life perfectly inside orbital colonies.

By the time you've reached that point, the number of people living in orbital colonies wouls mean that they are the norm, and it is people who live at the bottom of a (gravitational) hole who would be considered dumb, crippled dwarfs.

Comment Re:From TFA: bit-exact or not? (Score 1) 172

Given that CPU and memory get less expensive over time,

Ouch!

Certainly that has happened in the past (I too remember paying £200 extra for the 4MB version of a computer instead of the 1MB version) ; there are processes in the production pipeline that should keep the trend downwards for a decade or so.

Beyond that ... much thinner ice. And looking into the immediate future (speaking as a geologist, say doubling our species' age to ~100,000 years ... well, you'll need sub-gluon storage, and a hard drive failure could locally cause heat-death of the visible universe.

Comment Re:I've had this as a plug-in. (Score 1) 190

That a GPU is sitting unused in a desktop application is one of the safest assumptions you can make in the current computing work

Is it? I don't even know if I've got a GPU - why should I? I do know that when I try running a seismic-visualisation tool, it crawls like a dog run over by a series of artics. but I still don't know if I've got a GPU. [Checks details] "Intel GMA 650," whatever the fuck that means.

Just because he's dead is no reason to lay off work.

Working...