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Comment Re:I have no fear of AI, but fear AI weapons (Score 1) 278 278

Well, robbery would be a bit tougher than general mayhem. In the foreseeable future you'd probably need a human in the loop, for example to confirm that the victim actually complied with the order to "put ALL the money in the bag." Still that would remove the perpetrator from the scene of the crime. If there were an open or hackable wi-fi access point nearby it'd be tricky to hunt him down.

This kind of remote controlled drone mediated crime is very feasible now. It wouldn't take much technical savvy to figure out how to mount a shotgun shell on a quadcopter and fly it to a particular victim (if you have one). That's a lot less sophisticated than stuff terrorists do already; anyone with moderate technical aptitude could do it with off-the-shelf components. I'm sure we'll see our first non-state-actor controlled drone assassination in the next couple of years. Or maybe a hacktivist will detonate a party popper on the President or something like that.

Within our lifetime it'll surely be feasible for ordinary hackers to build autonomous systems that could fly into a general area and hunt down a particular victim using facial recognition. People have experimented with facial recognition with SBCs like the Raspberry Pi already.

You can forbid states from doing this all you want, but as technology advances the technology to do this won't be exotic. It'll be commonplace stuff used for work and even recreation.

Comment Re:Same likely holds true... (Score 1) 246 246

The same thing could likely be said of all obtrusive advertising: it is a nuisance not a benefit.

They aren't exactly the same, because interstitial ads aren't just obtrustive, they're interfering. You can't simply mentally resolve to ignore them; if you want to continue you've got to either follow the ad or find a way to dismiss it. This presents the user with a Hobson's Choice: physically respond to the ad, or go back.

A lot depends on how motivated you are to get at the content. If it's something you've clicked out of idle curiosity, you'll back away. If it's something you really want to see you'll fight your way through. Since so much traffic on the Internet is driven by idle curiosity, the 69% figure doesn't surprise me at all. What would be interesting is to disaggregate that figure by types of target content.

Comment Re:User scripts FTW (Score 1) 4 4


I'm a quickie editor when something annoys me enough, so, i don't feel like learning it extensively, though admittedly, it'd be nice.

I ought to come back to this post before writing a new script though. Maybe some more interest will help me appreciate this information a lot more.

Thank you!

Comment Re:There's Very Few Things (Score 3, Insightful) 80 80

You are conflating a world that is becoming warmer with a world that just *is* warmer. It may be true (I take no position) that a world that is 4-5 C warmer is better for certain classes of poor people (e.g., subsistence farmers). But a world that is changing rapidly is a calimity to poor people tied to the land, especially in a modern world with national boundaries and private property where you just can't pick up and move like our paleolithic ancestors would have.

Comment Re:If it's not _real_ bacon? (Score 1) 174 174

This guy is entitled to use the word "plant" as he will, but it doesn't agree with modern systematics. For example he calls "kelp" a plant, but it is taxonomically closer to the parasite that causes malaria than it is to land plants.

"Macroalgae" is a multi-phyletic category, including eukaryotes of the Archaeplastida group that includes red algae and green algae and the land plants that evolved from green algae, and of the super-group Chromalveolata that includes red tides, brown algae (such as kelp or Plasmodium). Green algae and land plants are grouped together under the kingdom "Plantae" in modern taxonomies.

So "seaweed" as a category includes organisms which are (cladistically speaking) closely related to land plants (green algae like sea grapes or sea lettuce), middling-related (red algae like nori or carageenan) and not very closely related at all (brown algae like kombu/kelp). Of course all organisms are presumably related to some degree.

The seaweed in question is a kind of dulse, a red algae. It's more closely related to land plants than a brown algae like kelp would be, but less related than sea lettuce. Red algae are specifically not included in the Kingdom Plantae. However, layman are free to call whatever they want a plant, even if it's in fact something else entirely, the way they call any small arthropod a "bug", even through true bugs are one of the 75,000 species in the order Hemiptera (out of over a million insect species).

Comment Re:If it's not _real_ bacon? (Score 1) 174 174

Technically it's not a plant. Its a macroalgae and thus belongs to an entirely distinct taxonomic kingdom from plants and animals. Of course halakhically it probably counts as a plant because Jewish law isn't based on modern scientific concepts.

Many years ago some of my wife's friends inhabited a kosher apartment near her engineering school that had been passed down through generations of orthodox students. A dispute arose over whether a particular bowl was glass or pottery. Finally they called in their buddy the material science major for a scientific ruling. "It's neither," he said. "It's ceramic." Which was technically accurate, but irrelevant to the question of whether it could be kashered.

Comment Re:Improving data [Re:The Gods] (Score 4, Insightful) 382 382

I'm not sure what your point is. The way science works is that scientists are constantly improving their work. You would be more worried if they didn't upgrade their data analysis methods from time to time.

There's a vast difference between improving your analysis and dropping data you don't like.

There's also a vast difference between ignorant and being willfully ignorant. There is a full detailed scientific explanation of WHY the change was made. It has nothing to do with "Oh we don't like it".

Grow up.

Comment Re:400 years away? (Score 1) 195 195

If it's been 400 years since the Maunder Minimum, and assuming we peak on temperature right now, wouldn't that mean the new minimum is still a problem for our [great-]+grandchildren?

No, because solar variation even during the minimum wouldn't even be close to enough to offset the additional warming we've introduced. Even if our temperature peaked right now, we're at about .8C above the 20th century average. A Maunder Minimum type event would drop that by about .2C. So even if this was as warm as it gets (which it isn't) then global average temperature would still be about .6C above the 20th century average.

Comment Re:"more media hype than science" - LOL (Score 1) 195 195

I would just like climatologists to admit that most of their prior models have had their faults and this one may as well...

I'm going to take a wild guess here and say you don't really ever read research papers. Because if you did, you'd know that just about every piece of research includes a section for ERROR ANALYSIS. In other words, scientists know there are errors and they analyze them to describe what they are, how they're bounded, etc.

Comment Re:Nothing to see here, move along... (Score 3, Informative) 195 195

This is where I have an issue. ANY piece of science than, in any way, might somehow make someone question the global warming dogma is immediately attacked and discredited. As a former scientist, this is really scary.

Every scientific point of view deserves scrutiny. To immediately try to discredit people of differing opinions to stop the global warming money train is really scary.

Same thing happened back in the 90s, when the theory of dinosaurs evolving into birds surfaced. For a few years there, any opposing theory was mocked and laughed at.

If you were a real scientist then you wouldn't type that "money train" denialist bullshit.

Also, if you were real scientist then you would actually have a clue about what the research actually was. People aren't attacking the the double dynamo hypothesis proposed by the paper. They're attacking the outrageous stupidity by the media and science deniers saying that a predicted solar minimum event will result in a mini ice age.

If you passed third grade math class then you should be able to tell pretty quickly that the "mini-ice age" claim is 100% garbage. Even during the Maunder Minimum (which, if you read the paper, isn't what's predicted to happen) insolation changed by a whopping .2%. The forcing from additional greenhouse gases significantly exceeds that to the point where it will barely make a dent in the best case scenario (2C temperature increase).

Comment Re:"Less than 20 lines of code" (Score 1) 91 91

It's syntactical sugar really. As noted, most of the work is handled under the covers by what are essentially library calls. Any language can replicate this, and in a similar number of lines of code (given that the functionality available in a similar library).

Sometimes, too long is too long. - Joe Crowe