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Comment Re:RISK vs CHANCE (Score 2) 163

See, but here's the thing. While the CHANCE is low, the DEGREE OF BADNESS of an asteroid or comet impact is infinite. As in, extinction.

As CHANCE is non-zero, the RISK is infinite as well.

Therefore, we should be taking steps.

If you follow that logic, then we also MUST take steps against:
- Global warming
- Killer viruses
- Rogue black holes
- Rogue artificial intelligence
- Aliens
- Gamma ray bursts
- Giant solar flares
- Magnetic field reversal
- Supervolcanoes
- Biotech disaster
- Nanotechnology
- Particle accelerator chain reaction
- Divine intervention
- etc.

We cannot take action against everything that could possibly destroy us, so we take action based on the CHANCE of those things happening. We have decided that "Killer Asteroids" should be moved down the list as the chance of one occurring is very small.

And no, the DEGREE OF BADNESS is not "infinite". If you think that, you misunderstand how big "infinity" is. Don't use concepts that don't apply.

Comment Re:And we STILL can't read it (Score 4, Funny) 240

Doubtlessly to be released to public 24 hours before the Congressional vote...

With apologies to the late Douglas Adams:

Congressman: "But the treaty was on display to the public!"
Disgruntled Voter: “On display? I eventually had to go down to the cellar to find it.”

Congressman: “That’s the display department.”
Disgruntled Voter: “With a flashlight.”

Congressman: “Ah, well, the lights had probably gone.”
Disgruntled Voter: “So had the stairs.”

Congressman: “But look, you found the treaty, didn’t you?”
Disgruntled Voter: “Yes, yes I did. It was on display in the bottom of a locked filing cabinet stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying ‘Beware of the Leopard.”

Comment Editors?!?! (Score 1) 683

Ed Regis write in the NYT that today we an witnessing an outburst of enthusiasm over the literally outlandish notion that in the relatively near future, some of us are going to be living, working, thriving and dying on Mars.

Me write in the Slashdot that today we an witnessing an outburst of enthusiasm over the literally outlandish notion that in the relatively near future Slashdot editors will actually be proofreading, editing and correcting submissions prior to vomiting them onto the site.

Comment Re:What does Science have to say about this? (Score 4, Insightful) 588

Unfortunately, they have the backing of this guy who is on some sort of crusade to protect humans and wildlife from those oh so dangerous invisible EMF rays.

Even more unfortunately, he appears to be a bright guy with fairly well established credentials.

The problem is (and this is sometimes overlooked by judges) smart people can be:
a) wrong
b) crazy
c) lying

In this case I think it's (a) with a healthy dose of (b) mixed in.

Hopefully the judge takes stock of the numerous double blind studies where it has been shown that EMF "sufferers" symptoms disappeared when they were unaware of the presence of EMF radiation

Comment Re:Neo-Luddite scaremongering wins again (Score 1) 361

There are quite a few farmers on the wrong end of Monsanto's legal team that would fucking disagree with you

Reference, please?

The only one I can find involves a Canadian farmer who intentionally obtained and used GMO seed from his neighbor's farm. He damn well knew what he was doing, and still it was ruled that he didn't owe Monsanto any money

Comment Re:Wait, what? (Score 2, Informative) 361

Interesting perspective. Almost entirely wrong, but still interesting.

1) Monsanto does not produce "sterile" seeds. They do hold a patent on that technology, but have promised not to create seeds using that technology. Yes, they could go back on that promise...but how about we wait until they actually do that before vilifying them?

2) They have never "litigated a farmer to death" over "marked strains are found sprouting in their hedgerows". The one lawsuit that occurred was a result of a farmer who intentionally replanted Monsanto seeds from crops adjoining his neighbors farm (who was using Monsanto seeds), after spraying those same crops with RoundUp, so he knew that was was left was pesticide resistant.

In this case, the amount the farmer (after appeal) had to pay Monsanto was: $0.

Comment Re:Crapdroid? No thanks. (Score 2) 154

Android runs fine IFF you get a Google Nexus phone, AND don't go through Verizon or AT&T and have their malware installed.

Or if you buy any Android-compatible phone, root it and install your own OS on it. Seriously, I don't understand why anyone on Slashdot doesn't do this.

Comment Re:Or let us keep our hard-earned money (Score 1) 574

Shouldn't we collectively agree on what is needed, before we collectively decide to pay for them? Is this a democratic republic?

Yes, we should have candidates who clearly state what they intend to have the government pay for then we can collectively decide whether to vote for those candidates or not.

oh, wait....

You will lose an important tape file.