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Comment: Re:presidents age (Score 3, Funny) 58

by TWX (#49606487) Attached to: Microsoft's AI Judges Age From Snapshots, With Mixed Results
It's probably more accurate to say that Presidents look haggard and appear to be older than they are while in office. Probably something to do with the responsibility and the stress. Thing is in this Microsoft software, if it doesn't have a means to address the difference then it probably will err on the side of older.

Someone did a faces of pornography shoot where they took headshots of pornographic actresses before and after their makeup was applied. I wonder how substantial the differences there would be with the subject at the same age.

Comment: Re:How Detriot Got That Way -- and Why It Will.... (Score 2) 88

by TWX (#49605849) Attached to: How Silicon Valley Got That Way -- and Why It Will Continue To Rule
The most advanced silicon chip manufacturing plant in the world is in Chandler, Arizona, and the wafers made there are packaged into processors in Malaysia and Ireland. Many materials scientists work at the Chandler plant, not in Sunnyvale, because it's so much less expensive to live there.

Comment: Re:How Detriot Got That Way -- and Why It Will.... (Score 1) 88

by TWX (#49605839) Attached to: How Silicon Valley Got That Way -- and Why It Will Continue To Rule
The cracks in the armor of the American automobile industry were already appearing in the early sixties. At one point nearly all of the sports-convertibles sold worldwide were from the United Kingdom, before auto consolidation and quality failure broke the back of the British auto industry.

Comment: Re:I agree with TFA (Zug) (Score 1) 558

by TWX (#49605821) Attached to: My High School CS Homework Is the Centerfold
Is this wrong? I saw this displayed in public in an all-ages museum, to be seen by children, adolescents, and adults:

A Young Girl Defending Herself Against Eros

Or these, on display literally in the hallowed halls of one of the departments of our federal government:

Spirit of Justice and Majesty of Justice

Or this famous painting, representing sentiment and struggle in the French Revolution:

La liberté guidant le peuple

Before you argue that these are paintings or statues and that you're not supposed to feel anything, that would be completely wrong. These works are intended to stir feelings, that's the whole point in their having been created. The artists that created these kinds of works often based them on women that they had intimate knowledge of as well, and had the medium of photography existed or been appropriate at the time the works were created, I suspect it would have been employed, exactly the same way that Playboy operated for most of its existence.

Comment: How Detriot Got That Way -- and Why It Will.... (Score 4, Insightful) 88

by TWX (#49605743) Attached to: How Silicon Valley Got That Way -- and Why It Will Continue To Rule
How Switzerland Got That Way -- and Why It Will Continue To Rule

How Japan Got That Way -- and Why It Will Continue To Rule

How England Got That Way -- and Why It Will Continue To Rule

How Rome Got That Way -- and Why It Will Continue To Rule

Nothing involving active processes, continued development, and people is permanent. Its longevity is always dictated by its continued management and the ability to keep pushing without growing complacent such that disruptive technologies or hungry competitors don't surpass it or make it irrelevant.

Comment: Re:Minumum Wage will push these sooner (Score 1) 44

by TWX (#49603333) Attached to: Robots In 2020: Lending a Helping Hand To Humans (And Each Other)
Machines in every form benefit the owners of the means of production, not the worker that works for someone else. This has been a fact since cottage industry gave way to centralized production at the beginning of the industrial revolution. Machines allow less humans to do more work. That is true of the use of the water-powered forging hammer that replaces a half-dozen men swinging sledge hammers, or of the automated alignment and welding assembly that puts car bodies together without using humans for the bulk of the job.

I'm really surprised that fast food and other low-skill, low-wage work hasn't been replaced by robots already. Companies that sell these products have already figured out exactly how hot the grille and deep-fry oil needs to be, how long the meat needs to be in each and when to flip or remove, and given the crap job that the no-skill worker does of stacking the condiments, a machine probably could apply a slice of lettuce, two slices of tomato, meat, and cheese between two slices of bread to make a hamburger before wrapping it in paper.

Fast food isn't a skill. It doesn't even come close to coffee shop barista, where the customer is already paying a luxury price for a human's touch when making a product that could come out of a machine just about as well. If it costs $200,000 per year to pay employees to work a fast food restaurant, and that cost can be reduced to $60,000 per year by the introduction of a half a million dollars of machinery that will last for a decade, these companies would be nuts to not replace workers with robots.

Comment: Re:I agree with TFA (Zug) (Score 2) 558

by TWX (#49600891) Attached to: My High School CS Homework Is the Centerfold
The pose is a face, a little bit of bare shoulder, hair, and a hat. That kind of exposure (ie, the shoulder) is common throughout the United States anywhere that's warm enough to dress that way. There are entire fashions dedicated to off-shoulder blouses and dresses for women. Women of all ages, including minors, are free to dress that way, and men and women of all ages, including minors, need to learn how to control themselves when something as sexual as a shoulder is displayed.

You want to not be tantalized or enticed? Move to a country that requires women to cover themselves. Otherwise learn to control your base instincts, you animal. If she's not displaying her sexual characteristics then your being excited is definitely your problem, not anyone else's.

Comment: Re:/.er bitcoin comments are the best! (Score 5, Interesting) 249

by TWX (#49587633) Attached to: Bitcoin Is Disrupting the Argentine Economy
Argentina already went through this headache when the US Dollar became the defacto standard for awhile while the Argentine Peso was pegged by law to the US Dollar and contracts were drafted using the Dollar, not the Peso, as the unit of currency. This became a problem when Argentina wanted to decouple from the Dollar; it meant that Argentines, earning money in Pesos, would be entirely dependent on the exchange rate at the moment to pay back their debts. I expect that's why the currency exchange laws were passed, to make the transition back to their own currency and thus their own monetary policy possible.

Bitcoin, if it gets too big, destabilizes this again, as now people do not look to their own national currency, and their already weak national currency grows even weaker. If you want an example of the effects of a nation not being able to control monetary policy, look at Greece as a constituent of the EU; they can't control monetary policy through the usual means (ie, controlling access to new money) so they can't devalue the currency when necessary to keep the economy flowing.

I expect that the laws will be interpreted to mean that Bitcoin users are in violation, or else new laws will be written to force Bitcoin exchange to follow the same rules as any other currency exchange. Argentina has struggled with their money for too long to let something destabilize the government like this.

Comment: Re:Once again (Score 1) 141

by TWX (#49579345) Attached to: Ham Radio Fills Communication Gaps In Nepal Rescue Effort
On a day with freak weather conditions a buddy of mine in Las Vegas managed to talk on 2m to someone in Hawaii on an HT. He had a hell of a time getting people in California to quiet down and let him have airtime.

I've only managed to go about 50 miles at 5 Watts on 2m, but I haven't really made a point of trying for range either.

Comment: Re:Again? (Score 2) 141

by TWX (#49579279) Attached to: Ham Radio Fills Communication Gaps In Nepal Rescue Effort
People like to forget that while traditional analog radio isn't secure, when these kinds of disasters happen being able to broadcast such that multiple people can receive and possibly respond is a feature, not a flaw. Consumer cell phones are designed to let the phone communicate with the carrier only, not to communicate with other phones directly. That means that contacting multiple parties is so much more complex that when the system is stressed it breaks.

I've actually broken down on the Interstate where I had no cell service, and the passengers from the other incapacitated vehicles (from debris on the road) also couldn't get cell service, so it wasn't just one provider. It wasn't a terrible emergency, but if we'd needed an emergency response we couldn't have called for it.

Comment: Improving photoshop contests (Score 2) 123

by TWX (#49579237) Attached to: Interviews: Ask Fark Founder Drew Curtis a Question

Fark used to have some of the best Photoshop contests, both in terms of what people came up with (thinking of the Lukket fake Rand Corporation computer as an example), and in the way that the in-line display and voting for the entries worked. What would you like to do with these going forward to get more involvement for these contests?

Comment: Re:Why are they interested in this? (Score 1) 167

by TWX (#49574761) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How Should I Build a Maker Space For a Liberal Arts College?

Are you being asked to do this because it's the hip thing to do, or because the school wants to turn out more well-rounded graduates who can actually do things with their hands?

That's quite a leading question, isn't it?

Given that makerspaces don't seem to encourage hands-on skills like workshops do, sounds like there's only one answer to the question posed.

A committee is a life form with six or more legs and no brain. -- Lazarus Long, "Time Enough For Love"