Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?

Slashdot videos: Now with more Slashdot!

  • View

  • Discuss

  • Share

We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).


Comment: Re:High Salinity Levels for Halomonas (Score 2) 221

by Sum0 (#34514326) Attached to: Iron-Eating Bug Is Gobbling Up the Titanic
Higher temperature near equator = more evaporation = higher salinity. Melting water during summers near poles = freshwater input = lower salinity. Atlantic is more saline for various reasons, but input from the Mediterranean (small warm salty basin) is a big one. Depth distributions are related to global-scale thermohaline circulation as well as temperature related density stratifications

Comment: Re:Suicide? (Score 1) 1343

by Sum0 (#31441902) Attached to: Accidental Wii Suicide
Not in the US: http://www.bop.gov/about/mission.jsp Bureau of Prison's Mission Statement It is the mission of the Federal Bureau of Prisons to protect society by confining offenders in the controlled environments of prisons and community-based facilities that are safe, humane, cost-efficient, and appropriately secure, and that provide work and other self-improvement opportunities to assist offenders in becoming law-abiding citizens. I don't see the word "punishment" in there.

Comment: Largo (Score 1) 176

by Sum0 (#31202484) Attached to: Life Imagined As One Big RPG
Reminds me of Largo from Megatokyo, who seems to live within a variety of video games and sees zombies instead of people and robots instead of cardboard boxes. We already have a way to measure achievement (at least on one level). It's called money. There are certainly others; career advancement, academic achievements, karma points...

Comment: Re:That's not ironic! (Score 4, Insightful) 113

by 0100010001010011 (#29388051) Attached to: Facebook Releases Open Source Web Server

Irony deals with opposites; it has nothing to do with coincidence. If two baseball players from the same hometown, on different teams, receive the same uniform number, it is not ironic. It is a coincidence. If Barry Bonds attains lifetime statistics identical to his fatherâ(TM)s it will not be ironic. It will be a coincidence. Irony is "a state of affairs that is the reverse of what was to be expected; a result opposite to and in mockery of the appropriate result." For instance:

* If a diabetic, on his way to buy insulin, is killed by a runaway truck, he is the victim of an accident. If the truck was delivering sugar, he is the victim of an oddly poetic coincidence. But if the truck was delivering insulin, ah! Then he is the victim of an irony.

* If a Kurd, after surviving bloody battle with Saddam Husseinâ(TM)s army and a long, difficult escape through the mountains, is crushed and killed by a parachute drop of humanitarian aid, that, my friend, is irony writ large.

* Darryl Stingley, the pro football player, was paralyzed after a brutal hit by Jack Tatum. Now Darryl Stingleyâ(TM)s son plays football, and if the son should become paralyzed while playing, it will not be ironic. It will be coincidental. If Darryl Stingleyâ(TM)s son paralyzes someone else, that will be closer to ironic. If he paralyzes Jack Tatumâ(TM)s son that will be precisely ironic.
The late and great, George Carlin.

Comment: Re:Price point (Score 1) 503

by Ma8thew (#29387823) Attached to: E-book readers ...
But dirt cheap DAPs were not what caused them to take off. DAPs first took off around 2000. The first iPod was $400, and the breakthrough device, the iPod mini was $199. While I agree that the prices of EBook readers needs to come down, the idea that they need to be the price of a hardback to become popular is ridiculous.

Comment: Re:I use the FAT filesystem most sticks come with (Score 1) 569

by pz (#29386757) Attached to: Which Filesystem Do You Use On Portable Media For Linux Systems?

Then, if I need to preserve Linux file settings I'll zip, tar, or cpio and store them on the stick that way.

Good idea, but a pain in the neck if you need to moved files often, as I do. My solution for two machines in particular (one Fedora, one WinXP) was to install an ext2 driver on the Windows box --- http://www.fs-driver.org/ --- and use ext2 on the USB key. Permissions are retained.

Comment: Re:NTFS (Score 2, Interesting) 569

by novakreo (#29386283) Attached to: Which Filesystem Do You Use On Portable Media For Linux Systems?

Native, as in I can toss a stick over to a Mac-loving coworker and expect it to work without intervention.

If Apple includes ntfs-3g in OSX 10.7, that's different.

On that criterion, NTFS on Linux fails too, since not all distributions include r/w NTFS support by default. At least in both cases it's fairly simple to install the necessary software.

Hopefully future versions of OS X will have read/write NTFS support built-in.

Comment: Re:Human-level AI (Score 1) 903

by DriedClexler (#29381179) Attached to: Which Breakthrough Is Most Likely?

If you simulate an atomic blast it sufficient resolution do you get real radiation as a result? Nope. If you simulate a human brain at sufficient resolution do you get real sentience as a result? Same answer.

Invalid comparison.

When you fire an atomic weapon, your desired output is widescale destruction. Correct, a simulation doesn't give you that.

When you simulate an intelligent being, your desired output is its inferences. The simulation does give you that (if you do it well enough).

Of course, I should add that it's not helpful to focus on simulating human brains. It's like saying, "Heavier-than-air human flight is easy. You just have to build good enough mechanical replicas of hawks, and then get a flock of them to tow someone."

In other words, yes, it's true -- that is the upper bound on the engineerng difficulty of the problem. But we can, and most likely will, solve the problem by better understanding the phenomenon in question, and then using that understanding to come up with something easier to build than than a mimic of a biological system.

Comment: Re:trap (Score 4, Interesting) 344

by DesertBlade (#29381161) Attached to: Microsoft Launches Its Own Open Source Foundation
Apparently you haven't used it. It is now my daily user at work, while it is a million times better than Vista, I still would rather use my Ubuntu at home or even my wife's Mac. The cool visuals wear off after about 2 days, and the long load times, random hangs start to become more noticeable. While Ubuntu is not perfect, it is free. And the cost to upgrade my wife's mac to Snow Leopard was a reasonable $29 versus the nearly $200 for windows.

Time-sharing is the junk-mail part of the computer business. -- H.R.J. Grosch (attributed)