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Comment: Re:So fit people generally live longer? Go figure (Score 1) 56

by jedidiah (#49179797) Attached to: Treadmill Performance Predicts Mortality

A fit body is more ready for a nasty surprise. If you aren't very fit, you may end up as a freak heart attack statistic. No one may even know what really killed you.

It's all a mix of seemingly random events with the inclusion of at least one element that's under your control.

Comment: Re:Storage (Score 1) 187

by sjames (#49178209) Attached to: World's First Lagoon Power Plants Unveiled In UK

I guess you don't know how the grid actually works. It does NOT involve running wires directly from the generator to some distant location. Again, I don't know that much about how it's set up in the UK, but physics there is the same as in the US. In the US, electricity is often sold across multiple states (easily far enough to reach another country in Europe). even when it's generated with fossil fuels. Since losing money isn't a popular hobby, I would have to say it makes economic sense.

Comment: Re:There is science here (Score 2) 17

by hey! (#49178195) Attached to: Rosetta Photographs Its Own Shadow On Comet 67P/C-G

Hmmm. While your explanation is unquestionably true, I don't think you quite understood what the poster was asking. His question is, I think, about the sharp shadows behind ridges on the surface, not the shadow of the vehicle itself.

I think his problem is an implicit assumption that if you drew a line from the center of the sun through the spacecraft, it would intersect the surface at a right angle. In that case you wouldn't expect cracks on the surface to display in such relief. However I believe that assumption is faulty, and that the rays of the sun intersect the surface at a considerable angle.

This is not unlike seeing the shadow of a plane you are riding in on the surface of the Earth. Unless you are in the tropics, that shadow won't be directly beneath you. It will be off to one side. It will also be distorted as it is spread out across the non-perpendicular surface, but you won't necessarily notice that because of foreshortening.

Comment: Two part problem (Score 1) 490

by sjames (#49178161) Attached to: Why We Should Stop Hiding File-Name Extensions

It's a problem in two parts, but what it really comes down to is that when you double click, you don't actually know if data will be viewed or a program will execute. Is it REALLY a surprise to anyone that that's a gamble you will lose sooner or later?

Fundamentally, having the same action mean more than one thing is asking for trouble. There needs to be one action to open and another to execute.

Next, the icons themselves should indicate an executable even if it does not end in .EXE. Some sort of emblem should take care of it.

Comment: Re:Easier to Analyze or Change == More Maintainabl (Score 2) 188

by hey! (#49177955) Attached to: Study: Refactoring Doesn't Improve Code Quality

I once took over 30,000 lines of code that had been written by a subcontractor and trimmed it to around 4000 LOC. And you better believe it ran faster! Not because refactoring is magic, but because once all the mind-numbing almost-repetition was mucked out you could actually see what the code was doing and notice that a lot of it wasn't really necessary. Ever since then I have always maintained that coders should never ever copy and paste code. I've had people disagree, saying that a little bit of copying and pasting won't hurt, but I say if it's really such a little bit then you shouldn't mind re-typing it. Of course if you do that very soon you start putting more effort into devising ways to stop repeating yourself, which is exactly the point. Repeating yourself should be painful.

That's I think a reliable litmus test for whether you should refactor a piece of software. If it's an area of code that's been receiving a lot of maintenance, and you think you can reduce the size significantly (say by 1/3 or more) without loss of features or generality you should do it. If it's an area of code that's not taking up any maintenance time, or if you're adding speculative features nobody is asked for and the code will get larger or remain the same size, then you should leave it alone. It's almost common sense.

I don't see why anyone would think that refactoring for its own sake would necessarily improve anything. If an automotive engineer on a lark decided to redesign a transmission you wouldn't expect it to get magically better just because he fiddled with it. But if he had a specific and reasonable objective in the redesign that's a different situation. If you have a specific and sensible objective for reorganizing a piece of code, then it's reasonable to consider doing it.

+ - Scientists Create Artificial Sunlight Real Enough To Trick the Brain 1

Submitted by (3830033) writes "Navanshu Agarwal writes that Italian scientists have developed an artificial LED sunlight system that looks just like real daylight streaming through a skylight. The LED skylight uses a thin coating of nanoparticles to recreate the effect that makes the sky blue, known as Rayleigh Scattering that doesn’t just light up a room but produces the texture and feel of sunlight. Paolo Di Trapani, one of the scientists who worked on the device believes that the skylight will allow developers of the future to not just build up, but also far down below the ground- without any of the dinginess that currently keeps us above ground.

CoeLux hopes to treat seasonal affective disorder, or SAD. Each year, some 10 million Americans, mostly women, find themselves sinking into a heavy malaise during the wintertime. CoeLux hopes its LED bulbs, which create the illusion of infinitely tall, bright blue skies, will help trick the brains of people with SAD, ridding them of their blues."

Comment: Re:Storage (Score 1) 187

by sjames (#49177479) Attached to: World's First Lagoon Power Plants Unveiled In UK

How does this excess electricity get to non-local consumers? There is significant line loss over long distances and the grid has to have the capacity to carry it.

Given that the grid exists and power is sold on it now, it stands to reason that it can be done in an economically sound manner. Otherwise it wouldn't exist.

Comment: Re:Secure is now illegal (Score 1) 197

While there may be information in this instance we don't have access to, on it's face there is no reason whatsoever to believe the datacenter knew what the customer was storing. They generally don't unless it is specifically pointed out.

Too many of these investigations are way too close to the old witch trial where they toss you in the river and if you drown you're innocent (but dead) and if you float you're a witch so they burn you. It's about as logical as seeing if they weigh the same as a duck.

Comment: Re:Morale of the Story (Score 1) 202

Those things always have fuzzy lines. Most likely the standard would be if a reasonable person might expect the expenditure to further the goal (answer, yes). Buying a Ferrari for the CEO certainly is not but hiring a software developer for a product that needs software clearly is a reasonable step.

If it gives you some idea how liberally the courts interpret those things, look at the various boards paying huge salaries and 'performance' bonuses to CEOs during bad years that don't get buried in shareholder suits.

But not to stray too far from the point, that language and other notices in the FAQs that they are not a store tend to show that their intent is not to be a mail (or web) order business. In fact they specifically state that they are not.

Comment: Re:Storage (Score 1) 187

by sjames (#49176581) Attached to: World's First Lagoon Power Plants Unveiled In UK

Why 6 times a day? Why would an industrial user care how many times a day as long as the duty cycle is adequate? Given the equal spacing of events, many of the low points in production would be in the middle of the night when demand is low.

If you'll note the terms I listed for residential a/c, that's potentially more than 6 a day.

In addition, when supply is high and local demand is low, they could always sell the excess.

Comment: Re:Morale of the Story (Score 1) 202

You just proved you're one of those people who didn't read. I quote (same page, a couple graphs down from yours):

If a creator is unable to complete their project and fulfill rewards, they’ve failed to live up to the basic obligations of this agreement. To right this, they must make every reasonable effort to find another way of bringing the project to the best possible conclusion for backers. A creator in this position has only remedied the situation and met their obligations to backers if:

  • they post an update that explains what work has been done, how funds were used, and what prevents them from finishing the project as planned;
  • they work diligently and in good faith to bring the project to the best possible conclusion in a timeframe that’s communicated to backers; they’re able to demonstrate that they’ve used funds appropriately and made every reasonable effort to complete the project as promised;
  • they’ve been honest, and have made no material misrepresentations in their communication to backers; and
  • they offer to return any remaining funds to backers who have not received their reward (in proportion to the amounts pledged), or else explain how those funds will be used to complete the project in some alternate form.

That's it for the remedies, make best effort, look for alternatives, say what went wrong and how the money was spent, and offer to return whatever is left. They've done all of that.

Genius is ten percent inspiration and fifty percent capital gains.