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Journal by mcgrew

Sundays at noon an old friend has a blues show on a local college radio station, WQNA. Of course, since the blues and booze go so well together, Sunday is my "drink too much" day. So by eight I was too drunk to edit. I put the book down and picked up the notebook and started typing.

Comment: Fuck you, Eugene O'Donnell (Score 1) 460

by jcr (#48451987) Attached to: Cops 101: NYC High School Teaches How To Behave During Stop-and-Frisk

The cops in NYC are a criminal gang that routinely violates citizens' civil rights. The fact that they're still doing this illegal "stop and frisk" bullshit after multiple court rulings against it, proves that they're not there to protect the public, they're just tax collectors and obedience enforcers.

-jcr

Comment: Re:writer doesn't get jeopardy, or much of anythin (Score 1) 418

by mcgrew (#48450705) Attached to: Alva Noe: Don't Worry About the Singularity, We Can't Even Copy an Amoeba

You people who believe in the singularity very obviously don't know how a computer works. It's simply an electric abacus; look at schematics for an ALU or a logic gate. How many beads do I need to put on my abacus before it becomes self-aware?

The danger is anthropomorphism; it's simply too easy to fool people into believing they see sentience where there is none. Evil people will use this to their evil ends.

Comment: Re:It seems like squeegeeing is the wrong approach (Score 2) 203

by eldavojohn (#48386159) Attached to: Window Washing a Skyscraper Is Beyond a Robot's Reach

For a human, using a sponge and squeegee combo is probably the most effective way to clean a window. For a robot, I would imagine that the answer is something more like a pressure washer, with a hood which covers the work area and reclaims the wash water. The water would then be filtered and reused until the particulate count rose too high, at which point it would be flushed and replaced with fresh. A sheeting additive would be used to cause the water to run off without spotting.

This probably wouldn't replace human window washing entirely, but it seems like it has the potential to replace at least some of the washes.

I've often wondered if anyone has ever tried a project to make a building which washes itself, using a robot designed for the building, and a building designed for the robot. I can imagine many problems with such a project without even undertaking it, mostly related to critters taking up residence in the mechanisms and/or tracks, but if it operated continuously that might well eliminate some of those objections. A universal window washing robot has a more complicated task than such a device would.

Did you even read the article? You'll find it discusses how the old World Trade Center Towers had built in devices that were made specifically for the building that would automatically go up and down cleaning it. The only problem was they missed the corners and creases of each pane and the rich people at the top of the building didn't want the grimy borders to their new expensive view of NYC.

It sounds like you have a lot of ideas for building a nice big heavy expensive machine that moves up and down a building. Burst forth and implement your idea, I think you'll find that the the weight, the power and the water feed to these devices will push you towards what has already been implemented and did not do a satisfactory job. Humans had to follow up behind the built in robots to clean spots they had missed.

It's funny, I read articles on Slashdot about how AI is the one thing that threatens man. And we can't even implement AI and pattern recognition to replace a window washer -- oh the incongruity!

Two is not equal to three, even for large values of two.

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