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Comment: who's responsible? (Score 3, Insightful) 226 226

Pretty clear, according to my understanding of OSHA liability in the US anyway:

"...the man who was servicing the robot beyond its protection cage..."

Lock out/tag out and energy isolation (ie unplugging, as well as well as releasing/securing stored energy (compressed gases, springs, kinetic, etc) is ABSOLUTELY the responsibility of the service person.

Comment: Re:It's that time... (Score 5, Funny) 226 226

I suggest we program all robots with some type of rules that prevent this from happening. Some 'laws', if you will that prevent them from hurting people. Force them to follow their programming (unless it tells them to hurt people). Finally, prevent them from damaging themselves or their work (unless it would cause them to hurt people or not follow their programming).

These are pretty basic 'laws'. I don't know why someone hasn't come up with this yet.

Comment: Gaps between Public and Economists (Score 1) 221 221

Indeed, there also is a large gap between the viewpoint of the public and economists.

For example, few economists (11%) agree with the statement "'Buy American' has a positive impact on manufacturing employment", whereas 75% of the public feel that way.

94% of economists feel that NAFTA was a good idea, only 46% of the public agree.

Comment: Re:Maternity leave (Score 1) 241 241

One year is as arbitrary as three. And you admit that spending some time with the child when they are young is a good thing so what really is your problem with maternity leave? Just because it isn't the amount you are accustomed to doesn't mean it is wrong.

I think spending time with the child at home over the first years is GREAT and I think the lack of this in todays society has lessened the quality of kids today over yesteryear (with respect to manners and the parental participation in the educational process, etc).

However, I don't believe it should be up to other to PAY for this. If you're gonna have kids, well, then PLAN and be fiscally ready before you pull the old rubber off or quit taking the pill. Be ready to sacrifice, and not live on the ideal standard with nice shiny cars and electronic toys.

It is your kid, plan before you fuck and have one.

Comment: Re:Sole provider? (Score 1) 241 241

Is there something wrong with wanting a rewarding career that you're passionate about?

Nope...but the reality is, most people do NOT have the luxury of having the time and resources to find the perfect job they love in order to work and make a living.

I guess it does help to attain that if you have a man supporting you till you find the one job you love, but that's mostly a luxury for women....but even that has its limitations with 3 mouths to feed and one new one to save for to educate later in life.

Comment: Re:Why force her to do something she doesn't want (Score 0) 241 241

Those of us having children are the only ones helping you have all the social welfare programs (pensions and Social Security, etc.)

Social Security...are you serious?

I have paid into that damned system all my life, and would have loved early on to have been able to take that money and invest it myself, rather than the Feds. But here we are now, and by the time I get to retirement age, it likely won't be around, or it will be so severely crippled with new regulations and moving the retirement age, I'll likely never see a meaningful fraction of what I put into it.

And by listening to the millineals (sp?) today they don't seem to want to respect the system put in place, and don't feel they owe anything to the previous generation, and hell...whine that life is tough (entitlement mentality), and they aren't coming out of school making $50K a year, etc. So, no, they don't want to pay into the system, and with the debt the Feds have rolled up these past two presidents....the SS system will go tits up long before I'll get anything out of it.

I"m scrambling now to sock back every cent I possibly can to take care of my own self in my older years. I won't have a wealthy retirement of traveling and golf, but I'm making damned sure I'll have a roof over my head I can call my own, and no debt. The trick is in timing having a good, reliable car that is paid off that will likely last me through the retirement years.

But no..I have no faith in your progeny to uphold the social safety nets or obligations to the elders of society at all.

What is a pension by the way? I thought that term disappeared in the 50's.

Comment: Re:Why force her to do something she doesn't want (Score 0) 241 241

First of all....3 YEARS of maternity leave?!?!? What...was the kid a difficult birth, or have problems? Seriously, maternity leave is like a year, more than that is taking time to spend with a kid as a stay at home mother (which is a good thing generally), but wow...that term really is more than should be applied here.

That being said...who is pushing for her to get back in the workforce...her or you?

Once you answer that question...well, it should be up to her where she wants to work and doing what. IT may be a good way to go, but only if that's what she wants to do. There are other interests, and certainly these days...other forms of employment that are more lucrative than just being a code monkey again.

Comment: Re:If we only set a string precedent... (Score 1) 92 92

If the corporate officers aren't DEAD, then they should still be culpable.

In the particular context of data, it's their choice whether or not they retain that data in a way that it could be sold. If at the end of the day the site fails, the business fails, and they go into bankruptcy, it's entirely their choice to preserve that data and sell it to mitigate their losses OR to destroy it based on their previous commitment to do so.

Now, I recognize that a bankruptcy court might frown on that as destruction of an asset of value, but IMO when you're dealing with such data businesses, it should be explicitly laid out in loan agreements that "the company's private data is NOT a secureable asset and is contractually required to be destroyed at the closure of the corporation" thus making it clear in advance that it's not an asset to be borrowed against.

Comment: Re:Both sides of the coin? (Score 1) 256 256

Except that while we all poo-poo racism, we carefully fail to discuss the fact that racism (and sexism, etc) are all just subtypes of generalization and generalizations persist BECAUSE THEY WORK. Certainly there's some confirmation bias, and some vicious-circle-reinforcement going on, but people wouldn't continue to generalize if they didn't find it ultimately useful.

I don't know about you, but I don't have the mental horsepower to keep a perfectly individual, atomistic view of everyone I've ever met as unique snowflakes in my mind. So I generalize, and these generalizations provide a reasonably reliable predictive value while I navigate the world. I know "guys of a certain age" will respond to something a certain way, while "women of a certain age" will respond another, and communicate accordingly.

Are there exceptions? Sure. I might find the beautiful 28 year old woman with a massive N-gauge model railroad in her basement; I'd amend my generalizations accordingly to say "ok, now there is a 1/1,000,000 chance that the next 28 yr old woman might also be fond of model railroads". The exceptions are where we find the limits to the generalizations and THIS is why (on the other side of the coin) it's so stupid to assert too much reliability to the models - ie act as if the generalizations are durably predictive, instead of generally descriptive. If you deny the exceptions, your 'internal models' just get more and more out-of-synch with reality and less and less useful.

I'd point out as well that the most inveterate racists that I know of any skin color are the people who either live or work the most closely with a diverse group of people - ie the people for whom a good, reliable mental generalization is relevant and useful on a DAILY basis - while the intellectualist "open minded" people seem to hail from the most lily-white suburbs.*

*FWIW I'd assert that most of what's called racism is in fact CLASSISM, and the tragedy of racism is that it masks actual class-based issues that are persistent and pernicious. Personally, my experience is that intolerance for racism/classism and racism/classism in practice are two separate things that have little to do with each other. I know an older black woman who is certain that white men in general are (in her words) "the devil" yet she cheerfully has coffee every morning with two white men in her building and would never harbor a nasty thought about either of them. On the other hand, I know lots and lots of white intellectuals that vehemently and passionately argue against the evils of racism, yet deliberately choose to live in 99.9% white suburbs and send their kids to private (mostly white) schools because they don't like the 'culture' of the public schools, and would sweat bullets sharing a downtown train with multiple 'urban youths' of various ethnicities.

Comment: Re:Really? (Score 1) 226 226

There won't be a taxi industry: (accepting for a moment your hyperbolic prediction) so what?

There really isn't a buggy-whip industry now either, nor much of a blacksmithing nor swordmaking one. They're relegated to economic niches that are more pursued as a craft than a vocation. C'est la vie - survival of the fittest.

The taxi industry for at least the last 70 years has been an ASTONISHINGLY widely corrupt one, with collusion between cities and the "medal holders" lucky, rich, or connected enough to be 'allowed' to participate in the business. It's going to die? Good fucking riddance.

And to more specifically address your point? No, it's not going to go away. There will always be a need for rides, and there will always be a segment of people who need/prefer the higher perceived security provided by a certified taxi with a formal organization behind it (in terms of liability). But the bulk-services shuttling drunkards to their homes at 2 am or students around town that can't afford a car? Yeah, no need for taxis there.

Hell, already taxi companies have had to noticeably "up their game" servicewise in the last few years, providing more comfortable, better rides and more electronic tools for convenience. Think that's coincidence?

Comment: The safest strategy (Score 3, Interesting) 76 76

The safest strategy for connecting everything in your home to the internet is....don't.

Why the fuck do you need to connect your front door lock, your coffeemaker, and your refrigerator to the internet?
Forget to lock your door? GO BACK AND LOCK IT. People have been doing it for 1000 years and the world continues to spin.
Don't want to get up in the morning to turn on your coffeemaker? Either a) get up and stop being a pussy or b) get one of the umpteen programmable ones, or c) just plug your damn coffeemaker into a christmas-light timer set to power up before you wake up.
Want your refrigerator to tell you when you're almost out of milk or better still, to automagically order restocks of food? LOOK INSIDE IT. Decide what you need to buy. THEN GO TO THE STORE. You'll meet actual humans there, and interact with them. I suspect there's more actual human value to that than to the supposed minutes you'll save (so you can what, play more video games? Do some more work emails?) not doing those things.

Comment: key based auth (Score 1) 23 23

Why not use key based auth instead of password based?

Probably for the same reasons that crypto email never worked out, but I wish it were an option on things like banking websites.

I'm now using a password manager, so I can use pretty hard passwords without having to try to remember them. But using signed certs would be much much stronger still.

Comment: Re:How about? (Score 1) 186 186

The local big box store has a receptacle for toner cartridges. Hit Best Buy, chuck them in there, call it done, the end.

I had a lot of toner cartridges as well, but no use in keeping them. They are not going to appreciate in value, and as time goes on, that toner cartridge format will be used by fewer printers, so might as well dispose of them properly (and properly isn't the trash can.)

I'd likely waste more $$ on gas packing up and driving to a Best Buy to drop off a single cartridge, than would be saved by recycling.

And as other posters say..what guarantee is it that BB is recycling them in some fashion?

Some things are trash, and crap like this isn't worth my time to drive all over town trying to find a specialized bin to toss it in. I'm not going to keep 3-4 different trash cans taking up limited room in my kitchen to sort shit out, why would I drive all over town to throw out one toner cartridge.

My taxes/fees pay for garbagemen to pick crap up and haul it off. Why not use them for what they are there for?

Any programming language is at its best before it is implemented and used.