Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed


Forgot your password?
Slashdot Deals: Cyber Monday Sale Extended! Courses ranging from coding to project management - all eLearning deals 20% off with coupon code "CYBERMONDAY20". ×

Comment Solar calculators (Score 1) 403

All solid state electronics ... very low power requirements.

There will be probably millions of these thing lying around for a long, long time if humanity suddenly goes poof. Many of them will be siting in protected, stable environments ... all that will have to happen is for one to get exposed to light and the little 0 will show up on the screen, ready to take input.

Comment Option (c) (Score 1) 162

Everybody in that issue, except for three, .. were part of our coordinated effort. Two people threw in comments that we had to delete (and if you look closely, are in the history). The third was likely aware, and his several comments supported our ruse, so they remained.

Our various tweets, including the two from @TheASF were (of course) coordinated along with the movement on the issue.

It was about a dozen of us, spanning around 14 hours. Many April Fool's pranks are "fire and forget". Keeping it *live* was our key. Many people, many voices, and many hours.

Hope you enjoyed :-)

Comment Carbon fuels only seem cheap (Score 1) 663

Even if we found out we had an unlimited supply of carbon-based fuels, if you factor in all of the associated costs with burning them (production, transportation, environmental, health) ... it turns out they're not really that cheap.

Unfortunately, we don't factor in ALL fo the costs into the price of our 'cheap' fuel sources ... we're incurring a huge debt because of it, and the books are going to balance sooner or later. The environment will get its pound of flesh.

Comment Re:There obviously is a deeper theory (Score 1) 186

I think Entropic Gravity is looking very promising.

Verlinde claims that it is starting to make some sense of the Dark Matter and Dark Energy problem.

This theory could change a whole lot of things in physics. And might provide a way to finally bring Quantum Theory and Relativity together.

General Relativity actually adopted equations that would be consistent with Newtonian Gravity without deriving it from first principles.
And probably that is the problem with its current formulation. The Entropic Gravity might provide the deriviation and mechanism for it.

Comment Re:OpenSolaris Board commits seppuku redux (Score 1) 428

Apache tried that game for many years. Work *within* the JCP, and as a member of the EC. Apache *has* made many useful changes to the JCP and how it operates. But even with all that, it hasn't produced the JCK without an FOU clause.

At some point, enough is enough. The Apache brand name cannot continue to be associated with a sham.

Comment Re:Wut? (Score 1) 406

Exactly. The Apache license provides freedom for developers to work with the code (pretty much) however they wish. It does not provide freedom to end-users (like copyleft/reciprocal licenses do; such as the GPL). HTC and T-Mobile are well within their rights to do something like this. It's uncool, but it is not a violation.

Comment This is all hogwash (Score 1) 541

We don't even have a theory that works. We have GR that breaks down as soon as gravity becomes too high, or it becomes too low. It will also not work at too small distances. We have QM which does not work beyond small distances.

Most scientists are not even willing to consider that the theory is broken, but are happy to extrapolate in places where it doesn't go.

There are very few who are even trying to work on a Quantum theory of Gravity. Without which talking about Cosmology and Warp Drives is meaning less.


Comment Re:Nah, I call BS (Score 1) 254

I wouldn't have much faith in this, precisely because it would have been done based on Newtonian gravity. It does not take care of the MOND phenomenology. With MOND in the picture things may be totally different.

MOND is an empirical equation which predicts the rotation curves based on the visible mass in Galaxies. It works beautifully at Galactic scales but does not work well at cluster scales.

We know that General Relativity (GR) and Quantum Mechanics (QM) both are mutually incompatible, which indicates that something is wrong in both of them. In addition GR does not work well when we get very high gravitational fields like a black hole. The equations lead to a singularity. It works beautifully when gravity is somewhat lower but doesn't seem to work well below a threshold, which leads us to the prediction of Dark Matter, with really weird properties to account for the lack of observation.

Also GR takes into account only one special constant speed of light or the maximum signal speed. It does not take into account the Planck's Length or the minimal wavelength of the signal. This is probably why it does not work well with QM. The modification due to taking into account the Planck's length may cause MOND we don't know.


Comment Simplest tax code would be (Score 1) 913

1) A single income tax range applicable on all direct incomes. Specifically profits on investments should not count. Investments actually make money available to the system. No Tax on it will actually help by giving incentive to people to save.
2) A single per person tax deduction depending on the cost of living in an area. This covers poor people.
3) Luxury tax on all products that are more costlier than the bottom say 10% meeting all requirements. This will make richer people pay more taxes, but without any prejudice.

There should possibly be a pollution tax, but that is a subjective quantity and subject to corruption.


Comment Re:Ignores time dilation (Score 1) 309

But the biggest problem is going to be finding a course that you can take without colliding with a wart at that speed. It will be difficult to avoid anything at that speed. Also there is the problem of energy. With speed your mass increase too, which requires more energy for the same amount of acceleration. It eventually gets very difficult to accelerate.

I know relativity can forever tie us to this rock. But maybe we could survive on colony sized space ships and mine the planets. I don't know if the nearest star system will be reachable in the very near future.

We will need a laser weapon to vaporize any speck that comes in our way, and hope that there is nothing large on our way.
Space exploration is not easy but I hope that we do it anyway.

First off we will need to fix this dark matter thing. If there is anything wrong with Newtonian equations of gravity at low accelerations (MOND, pioneer anomaly) then we will chart bad courses.


College Police Think Using Linux Is Suspicious Behavior 1079

FutureDomain writes "The Boston College Campus Police have seized the electronics of a computer science student for allegedly sending an email outing another student. The probable cause? The search warrant application states that he is 'a computer science major' and he uses 'two different operating systems for hiding his illegal activity. One is the regular B.C. operating system and the other is a black screen with white font which he uses prompt commands on.' The EFF is currently representing him."

Comment Re:They told if George W. Bush got elected... (Score 4, Insightful) 629

Obama's only been in office since Jan. 20th ... in this time his primary focus has had to be the economic crisis and the wars in the Mid-East.

Bush had a full 8 years to put all of his policies into effect. Do you think it's reasonable that Obama could reverse all of that in such a short time in office? Our new President has been very efficient since taking office and has put many wheels in motion trying to reverse much of the damage that Bush Co. has done to our country. But he can't do it all with a simple stroke of the pen, and he doesn't have the Constitutional authority to just "make it so" with a stroke of his pen for many of the things he'd like to do. His policies must follow the process of law, or he's no better than Bush.

Any objective observer would give Obama very high marks for his first 74 days (as of this writing). Granted he's got many people on the right who will cry foul at many of his moves, and people from the left who are whining that he hasn't given attention to their pet issues, but you have to admit the man has been very busy and very efficient even if you can't agree with what he's done.
It will take time for the 'cultural change' within the government to take hold. Many Bush appointees still hold office, many gov't agencies still have the mindset of the last 8 years and it takes time to enact cultural change within an organization as complex as the US Government.

It's not the time to judge Obama yet, give him time to get his agenda in place. Stay vigilant, yes. Complain that everything hasn't changed yet? C'mon ... be realistic.

Comment Re:The New Mainframe (Score 2, Informative) 386

Actually google does everything thrice (not unlike the Ramans). And returns the result that reaches it first. So in effect it is even more fault tolerant than the Mainframe. And it does them at different locations not on a single Facility (as opposed to a server or a 1AAA sized Container).

You are underestimating Google.

If it's worth hacking on well, it's worth hacking on for money.