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Comment Re:There are good reasons for gvt bureaucracy, rem (Score 1) 275

If the data isn't critical then why are they bothering to collect it in the first place? Why pay for license plate scanners, OCR systems, wireless network connections/bandwidth bills, etc if the data doesn't have value? If it does have value then placing it on a desktop system probably isn't the right answer.

Comment Re:Can't we just stop printing? (Score 1) 378

However, keep in mind that kids still need to learn how to write with pencil, pen, and paper, or they'll be dysfunctional in the real world.

Huh? I haven't written anything long hand in my entire career, and asking around both my department and other departments in my company only those older than ~50 have and it was decades ago before computers were dominant.

Comment Re:Can't we just stop printing? (Score 2) 378

Legal documents / Contracts - Because digital signatures aren't *quite* there yet, and most courts still only accept paper in official proceedings
B.S. digital signatures have been legally enforceable since the freaking Clinton administration, and almost all courts will accept legal filings (all federal courts do) and those that won't will generally accept a fax which obviously can be generated on the senders end without paper.

Schools - For obvious reasons
That reason eludes me, I know momentum keeps many schools using paper but if you do it right digital should be cheaper and better and do a better job or preparing the kids for the real world

Assembly instructions on shop floors (this is actually huge - even ruggedized tablets don't last very long in job shops)
Then they're not properly ruggidized, most shops have no problem with the computer built into their CNC machines.

Comment Re:Well, you *can't* trust open-source code (Score 1) 157


On the other hand, many (most?) people are taught or learn programming in the same way or much the same way

Citation needed.

When I was a lad we started programming in BASIC (not "Visual Basic, I mean 10 PRINT "HELLO WORLD" 20 GOTO 10) and moved on to Pascal in high school. The standard language of instruction in universities has gone from C to C++ to Java; most folks today probably pick up Javascript or PHP as their first language.

Comment Re:Probably By Design (Score 1) 732

The Harrier can't really do VTO either, the max VTOL weight is 18,950lbs, the jet with full fuel (no weapons) weighs 20,259 lbs. Add to that the damage caused by full vertical thrust to the runway/pad/deck and in actual operations they were basically never used as VTO craft but rather STO/VL.

Comment Re:Nothing new (Score 1) 54

Yeah, we've known AT&T was in bed with the NSA since the existence of room 641A was revealed. Anything after that is just trying to get people to pay attention to something that they obviously don't want to care about. The only way to get the average person to care was pointed out by John Oliver in his typical funny but very poignant style.

Comment Re:I dern't believe it! (Score 1) 732

Here's a crazy scenario: suppose you decide to invade Iran. You can't just sail your carrier up to the northern end of the Persian Gulf to support your drive to Tehran, the way we did on the way to Baghdad. You'd have to sail that carrier past 300 miles of Iraqi shoreline dotted with advanced anti-ship defenses in waters crawling with mini-subs. And it's a long, long way over rough terrain to get from the Gulf of Oman to Tehran in the extreme north of the country. Imagine fighting your way from New York City to Chicago, only the terrain in between was all mountains. So you land a Marine expeditionary force at the Gulf of Oman that fights its way northwest along the Persian Gulf. After they capture the shore batteries, you bring in your destroyers to clear out the mini-subs and then bring in your carriers.

Now that expeditionary force needs close air support and ground attack capabilities, and it needs to have them in an environment where the enemy has extensive, state of the art anti-aircraft missile installations. The logic for a Marine stealth jump jet in this scenario is compelling; what's questionable is trying to make that aircraft work for everyone else.

Prince Sultan Air Base is as close to the Iranian shoreline as the Gulf of Oman (significantly closer from the midpoint north), why play the Saudi's game for decades if you're not going to use their facilities when you need to fight in their back yard?

Comment Re:The A10 (Score 1) 732

The Russians developed better top armor and added reactive armor which makes the tank much more likely to survive a single strafing run by an A-10, but the T72's with reactive armor that the republican guard had in gulf war 1 still took pretty bad losses without air support. As to the SAM problem, the A10 is built to survive those and in fact has. It won't survive every hit obviously, but there are enough examples of planes taking major damage that no other airframe would be likely to survive to prove that the design worked.

Comment Re:Can the enemy actually shoot down the F35? (Score 3) 732

France and the UK combined are about the same size as Texas (760k km^2 vs 696k km^2) and each only has a single carrier group vs the US with 11 of which 5 are active at any one time with two on 90 day reserve. If France and the UK weren't part of NATO it's likely that they'd have 3-4 carrier groups each which would significantly increase their spending. Heck, the US typically has more nuclear submarines in docks than the UK has total. The only way we could realistically hope to cut huge percentages from our budget would be to tell our allies in SE Asia and Europe that they need to double or triple their own spending and give them a decade or two worth of warning (at least if we want to have the same balance of power in the world, if you want to have China and Russia exerting more influence in the world then sure unilaterally cut our budget without having our partners increase theirs)

All great discoveries are made by mistake. -- Young