Follow Slashdot stories on Twitter


Forgot your password?

Comment Re:Twitch is so heavily used...good luck. (Score 1) 50 50

Well, there are no network effects that I'm aware of so I guess it shouldn't be a problem. A better product will be used cause there are no switching costs. Unlike say switching from Facebook to something else even if the alternative is better. In the latter scenario, a better product will not automatically get social media users cause the value of a social network increases with the number of existing users alone.

I don't see the same effect for video streaming services.

Comment Re:There is no such thing as non-empirical science (Score 1) 364 364

And yet we have data that doesn't fit neatly in a single model. Hence the need or quest for unified theories in the first place. I mean...the current state of physics depends on a lot of data that doesn't fit a single framework.

And let's not even get started on dark matter. The entire concept was evolved to account for discrepancies in data that didn't fit existing models. If we can get a theory that not only explains everything we already know, but which also has a convenient explanation of what dark matter was meant to explain, that would be awesome.

Sure, a lot of theories might be crap. But it's worth popping them out nevertheless because the good ones can change the way we look at the world forever.

Comment Re:There is no such thing as non-empirical science (Score 1) 364 364

I disagree. We have lots and lots of data. What we need more is a coherent framework to put it all together. The data from the LHC is so vast that processing it is a herculean task. More frameworks, more ideas will help make sense from all of it.

Comment Re:There is no such thing as non-empirical science (Score 1) 364 364

That's just terminology. All of mathematics is "storytelling". The fact is that physics desperately needs ideas more than anything else. And we need them in a flood. Who cares what terminology is used? Let people make ideas and follow them. Some may pan out. Most won't. So what?

If some people don't want to call it "science", let them. It doesn't matter.

Comment Re:There is no such thing as non-empirical science (Score 2) 364 364

When a theory seems interesting, you can't just give up on it saying "Oh, there's no way to test it!". Who knows? Down the line when it's fully fleshed out, it might make predictions that can be tested. It might have a much more elegant explanation of existing patchwork theories. Ultimately you have to ask yourself whywe do physics. We don't do it to stick to some ideal standard. We do it for fun, for ourselves. To satisfy our craving for understanding.

Curiosity is a much bigger motivation that will not be arrested simply because someone points out that a theory can't be tested at this time. Every development, every idea, every thought is useful in some way or the other. If not directly, then indirectly. Ideas that are developed now can be used decades later in a new theory. We have to lay the seeds, bring out all the wayward theories and develop all the conceivable mathematical tools.

No, I don't consider any of this wasted effort at all.

Comment Re:Well... (Score 1) 421 421

There is no reason for an AI to kill us. Biological life forms created via evolution have the instinct for self preservation, to view threats both emotional and physical, and have been programmed to respond to those threats.

AI created by us will have no such impulses. No ego. No self preservation instinct (since we won't program them to, and it serves to purpose). So what on earth can be the reason for them to kill us? The only reason I can think of is if some human being specifically programs them to do so.

I'm not saying that a human being will never program an AI to kill us. I'm saying that assuming that AI will eventually kill us and to view it as a foregone conclusion is illogical.

Comment Re:I just don't care (Score 1) 232 232

And yet /. hates Microsoft for having it's 'Monopoly'

Google gives them "free" shiny. And wow, do they sound like whiny little bitches when someone says anything bad about them.

If Google gives us free shinies, that means it's good for us. As a consumer, I will support Google because I get free shinies. What's wrong with that? The customer is happy.

Comment Re:why do we continue to do research.. (Score 1) 90 90

it takes a wise person to realize that some things should not be done.

Mm...nope. Not for me. As a person who loves tech, I want to do EVERYTHING possible in tech. No matter the consequences, no matter the danger, I want to see it happen. The tech is an end in and of itself.

Comment Re:Good. (Score 2) 183 183

Nah, I'm pretty much a barbarian when it comes to art. If you show me a printed reproduction and told me it's the real thing, I'd fall for it hook line and sinker. And so would, I suspect, the overwhelming majority of people who go to museums.

Same for sculptures etc. Do a double blind test to check if people can figure out which is the real and which is the fake and well over 99% of people would fail!

A slow pup is a lazy dog. -- Willard Espy, "An Almanac of Words at Play"