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Comment: Re:I'll believe it when I see it... (Score 1) 71

Millions of subscribers? You have trouble nowadays convincing people that we went to the moon in the first place. Even the worst television series has more views than any (real) space-related stuff.

That aside, watching a mars rover live is like watching paint dry. Opportunity has a top speed of 0.18 km/h and on average it has moved 10 meters a day. It spent over 11 years on a marathon that runners on Earth do in two hours. Everything else it does is equally slow, it makes a sloth seem energetic. The reason is of course that it's running on a tiiiiiiiny trickle of power, but it doesn't make for great entertainment. It's like for example CERN, you get a huge splash when they find the Higgs boson but between that it's months and years between something newsworthy happening.

Comment: Re:Yeah, no. (Score 1) 192

by Kjella (#49765425) Attached to: What AI Experts Think About the Existential Risk of AI

And while I'm not inclined to draw a conclusion from this, it is interesting that we've had quite a few very high intelligences in our society over time. None of them have posed an "existential crisis" for the the planet, the the human race, or my cats. Smart people tend ot have better things to do than annoy others... also, they can anticipate consequences. Will this apply to "very smart machines"? Your guess (might be) as good as mine. It's almost certainly better than Musk's or Gates', since we know they were clueless enough to speak out definitively on a subject they don't (can't) know anything about. Hawking likewise, didn't mean to leave him out.

Well, maybe not the actual scientists but there are quite a few dead cultures and species wiped out because guns and bullets beats spears and claws. And I don't think anyone doubts Oppenheimer was a bright guy, even though he wasn't the one dropping the nukes. Since you mention cats, would you like an AI treating you like you treat the cats? My guess is you would not, particularly not when they decide we're too fickle and resource hungry and would rather not have cats.

The reason I'm not worried is because we have no clue on how to build systems with self-awareness. The software is running, but the computer can't look at itself in the mirror and realize I need electricity and CPUs and RAM sticks to "live". Wake me up when we have a computer that can actually refuse me from hitting the off switch.

Comment: Re:This is how organized religion dies (Score 1) 517

by Kjella (#49761595) Attached to: Ireland Votes Yes To Same-Sex Marriage

The scripture from earlier confirms to those of us who trust in the promise of God's kingdom --and who see dozens of bible promises already fulfilled-

Pardon me, I might be one of those godless heathens but I suffered through quite a few years of Christian teachings - what exactly has the Bible promised us apart from forgiveness from our sins and heavenly bliss in the afterlife? The old testament was as I remember it mostly punishments. Punishment for eating the apple, building Babel's tower, Sodom and Gomorrah and of course the flood to wipe out everything. We're all sinners from the original sin and if we don't repent it's hell.

The new testament was pretty much all allegories on how we should live, there were a few "one-off" miracles while Jesus lived but all those who saw him raise the dead, turn water to wine or walk on water has been dead for 2000 years. So there's good and evil in the world, but that's pretty indistinguishable from good and bad people with free will without God or Satan pulling anyone's strings.

So I'm curious, what is it you feel God has promised? And what do see that makes you feel he's delivered? Because I can't find a lick of difference, the devout believers get injured, sick and die like the rest of us and terrible sins go by without being struck down from the heavens. It's of course possible that all of this gets tallied up and justice is served in the afterlife, but here and now in this life I can't find any sign of God. Maybe I should ask this in the opposite direction, if you were to envision a world without God what exactly would be different?

Comment: Re:No comparison (Score 2) 90

by Kjella (#49760745) Attached to: Death In the Browser Tab

Look, I understand what you're trying to say. If they're trying to hide their atrocities we should expose them, if they're using them as propaganda and to terrorize we should suppress them. But as a guideline that would be very confusing and hard to live by since it assumes you know the details of every conflict and who wants what, assuming they're all in agreement which they're probably not. Not to mention the answer is probably (d) all of the above, some are inspired to fight against the atrocities, some are frightened by them and some are cheering them on.

Every year we send busloads of teens to visit Nazi concentration camps, not because we have some morbid fascination with death camps and genocide but because at some point you have to learn how cruel human beings can be to each other. But that is quickly fading out of living memory, it's 70 years since the war ended so those who really remember the war is in their 80s and 90s by now. Very soon it'll be "museum" knowledge that you read about in a book and look at an exhibit and it's going to be filed away as ancient history. But it's not, because there's still shit like that going on but we're not sure if we want to see it or not.

I'll admit that watching cruelty will make you die a little inside. You will want to punch something or maybe cry a bit, but at the end of the day I want the truth about the world not the PG-rated version. Which is of course not to say you should lose perspective, with 7 billion people it'll seem like anything you focus on happens a lot even if it deals with 0.01% of the population or less. And I'm here in the safety of my living room looking at a screen, I'm not the one in a war zone getting shot at. I'm not the one hoping nobody will bomb the market I go to. I'm not the soldier who needs to pull the trigger risking that innocents die if I do or die if I don't. I still got it easy.

Comment: Re:What? (Score 3, Insightful) 109

by Kjella (#49760451) Attached to: Oculus Founder Hit With Lawsuit

Not really. I believe there is a clean hands doctrine that says if your inaction has amplified the harm then you might not get relief for that. For example if you live in the downstairs apartment and notice water is leaking from the upstairs apartment but don't do anything to stop it or limit the damage because you'd rather get the insurance money you can get cut short. It's a lot trickier with an IP issue, is it a lump transfer or an ongoing violation but I think it has most the characteristics of the former where you take a half-finished product and hand it to someone else to finish. In that case there's no harm in delaying apart from the statute of limitations.

Let's say I'm in an accident with you, but it seems at first to not be a big deal and I don't sue for damages. However it turns out it won't heal properly and I lose a lot of money and decide to sue anyway. Am I too late? No, those costs aren't caused by the delay, they'd come no matter what and it won't count against me. Of course I'm not in the US, there you find the nearest ambulance chaser and sue for $millions, unless it was a hobo that hurt you.

Comment: Re:Overblown (Score 4, Insightful) 359

And yet it's an obvious case for cheap political rhetoric, "What do you mean that's never going to happen? You're sitting there making plans for it right now!" I don't think you should underestimate the explosive power of contingency plans. For example in a supply chain you might have a contingency plan in case your business partners, vendor or distribution network turn shit but nobody's going to like that you have a plan to stab them in the back. And there's always those who willingly or unintentionally confuse planning in case of failure with planning for failure.

TL;DR: Some things you should just keep your mouth shut about, even if makes sense.

Comment: Memorable (Score 1) 375

by ichthus (#49756979) Attached to: 25 Years Today - Windows 3.0
Windows 3.0 was part of my first venture into the PC platform. I got my first computer, an Atari 800, in 1984. I stayed with the Atari 8-bit platform until 1991, when I was able to purchase my fist PC: an 80386SX-16, running DOS 3.3 and Windows 3.0. Windows 3.0, despite it's repeated UAE errors and other frustrations, was absolutely AWESOME. I was a junior in high school, and using a mouse and icons felt so cutting-edge and... just fun. I still used DOS WordPerfect 5.1 for serious document creation, but Write was a lot of fun to work with, because of the pre-TTF fonts and pseudo WYSIWYG display.

> I purchased a Logitech ScanMan plus, B+W half-page scanner, and I was the envy of my classmates. This scanner worked great in Windows, if you didn't move the scanner too fast and overload the buffer. There was also a more competent DOS scanner utility, but the Windows one was just more fun.

I really enjoyed using Win3.0, and then Win3.1 with its TTF fonts. But, by then, I had moved to college and really depended on the stability of the OS. In 1994 I was using MS Word 6.0 and the stability of the whole system was simply atrocious. If I didn't habitually save my document every few minutes, I risked losing work due to lock-ups and crashes, which happened repeatedly and often. This was total CRAP! There had to be something better! I couldn't work like this -- how could anyone?

In 1995/1996 some of my fellow engineering student friends were talking about a new way -- "Lie-nuks". This new operating system that was a lot like the SunOS systems we were using in the lab. It was more stable and, even though there weren't as many applicationss available, it promised a more reliable way of getting work done. I tried Yggdrasil "plug and play" Linux in 1995, but it wasn't until 1996 that I was able to get Red Hat 4.1 (kernel 2.0.27) up and running that I completely fell in LOVE.

Since then, I've used Windows only as a necessary evil -- either for gaming or video editing (something Linux still lags in). But, for absolutely EVERY other task, I've used and enjoyed Linux (with Windowmaker, Gnome, Enlightenment, KDE; WordPerfect 8.0, WingZ, StarOffice 5.0, Liberoffice, and on and on, etc.) since 1996.

I have fond memories of Windows, sure. But, the best times I had with computing (even as I was a PC/Windows tech support guy for Packard Bell computers in the 1990's (and with the advent of Windows 95 and 98)), Linux has been the most fun, most stable, more secure, least worrisome and most productive OS in PC land for me. So, while I do certainly share in the Windows nostalgia, Micro$oft can totally SUCK IT! I lost more work and time and patience with your crappy, bloated, insecure and unstable OSes throughout the years than I care to chronicle and, while you may now be making strides to right the wrongs of the past, I will always view you with contempt and blame you for holding the home PC platform back from the more excellent potential it could have had if you had not been the dominant player. FUCK YOU.

Comment: Re:Funny but true (Score 1) 168

by Kjella (#49756547) Attached to: Video Games: Gateway To a Programming Career?

Well, we sure didn't get into it to write boring business applications except a few in the dotcom years who quickly moved on when it went bust. As I remember it though, there were many who just wanted to play games and only a few who wanted work with code and I don't think pushing them to play more would have brought them over. Of course you needed the opportunity, but there are a lot of games that are mod-friendly if you're so inclined. I'd sure encourage and test if tweaking a game peeks their interest, but if it doesn't I wouldn't try with more game time.

Comment: Wrong tag (Score 0) 225

by Prune (#49755503) Attached to: WSJ Crowdsources Investigation of Hillary Clinton Emails

I'm tagging this story "election2016."

How about "USAelection2016"? While Slashdot has always been somewhat US-centric (or, really, North America-centric), the level of unapologetic chauvinism here has gotten worse over the years. This site has a significant non-US user base and readership, and a lot of articles posted regarding international situations (UK government spying, EU IP laws, etc.). US posters and editors ought to maintain at least an iota of respect for the rest of the world, or risk alienating a good chunk of Slashdot's audience.

Comment: Re:There are quite a few haters on this thread but (Score 1) 214

Further, if this was in existence a few decades ago, perhaps we would have nipped Scientology in the bud before it landed in the UK.

If it were in existence ~1400 years ago, perhaps we would have nipped Islam in the bud.

If it were in existence ~2000 years ago, perhaps we would have nipped Christianity in the bud.

And I wonder how many readers agreed with my first line, then threw a shit-fit when they got to my second line.

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