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Comment Re:Unearned Platforms Given to Moral Guardians (Score 1) 223

From TFA:

The researchers focused on two outcomes of the DAWBA: risk for depression, and risk for “conduct disorder,” which is a term describing antisocial behaviors in children.

Finding no significant correlation between video gaming and those outcomes does not really prove the broad conclusion of the headline that "Video Gamers From the '90s Have Turned Out Mostly OK".

Right. And I don't think the supposition has ever been that video games increase the prevalence or incidence of any particular disorders in children, but rather what negative (or positive?) effects certain types of video games and length of time playing would have on children already prone to behavioral or psychological issues. Whether gaming (amount of time spent, and types of games played) makes things better or worse for those kids both in the short term and longer run... But good luck finding a control group. Really you are going to have to just look at estimated time spent gaming along with preferred games to make any meaningful comparison.

Comment Re:Unearned Platforms Given to Moral Guardians (Score 1) 223

There's a reason people dismiss claims of IRL "harm" the from Tipper Gores or Jack Thompsons or Anita Sarkeesians of the world. The burden of proof is always squarely on them, they almost always fail to meet it, and years later we (as often as not) get scientific evidence showing the opposite.

Population studies usually drown out subtle influences and factors. I think you have to look at individuals that do have issues and then see how the availability of games, drugs, booze, television, social interactions all come together to make their problems worse or better.

Comment Money is not the issue. (Score 1) 276

The issue isn't the money. $5 Billion is a pittance in Federal terms. The issue is the meddling. The potential for excessive mandates. Autonomous cars should be on the roads as soon as they can demonstrate they have an equivalent or better ability to drive than human drivers on existing roads.

It is that simple. And that is the type of simple uniform state and federal laws that we should be working towards. A car company should be able to certify that their autonomous system is safe and effective on existing roads and then that vehicle should be able to drive.

No additional infrastructure. That infrastructure approach has failed again and again since the 1950s. What we need is just roads and cars. Sure better roads would be great and benefit everyone and make it easier for autonomous cars to drive safely. Autonomous cars can't be relying on guide wires or smart signs or whatever. That is an old approach that just doesn't work because it puts an elaborate and expensive infrastructure before the utility. That infrastructure first approach is a recipe for having a couple roads where you can have autonomous cars and then decades of wasted time shaking rich people down to fund more infrastructure while the rest of us keep getting killed.

Having a dumb road system and vehicles that become smarter as technology improves is precisely the way we need to move forward to get this technology adopted as fast as possible and save lives.

Comment Re:2.5 powerballs (Score 1) 276

Without government involvement and support, maintaining and upgrading the highways & byways to accommodate driver-less vehicles,the whole enterprise is an exercise in futility. Smart highways are the next logical step.

Like it or not, government giveaways of your tax dollars will likely christen even the projects you support.

That is completely the wrong approach to autonomous driverless vehicles. These vehicles will have to be able to use existing infrastructure. Smart highways are a bad idea.

Comment Re:Why (Score 2) 276

Why is he getting involved in this at all? We already have several companies working toward this goal. The only answer that makes sense is that he wants to fund those companies closest to him or his party.

Or maybe he thinks the government should know at all times where you are, where you're going, where you stay when you get there, and how long you stay there.

Mostly not for law enforcement or nefarious statism, although that is a very valid concern. Having manufacturers put transponders on cars by default is mostly so the government can impose really elaborate tax schemes on road use beyond just a simple odometer tax or even just an excise tax or flat road use fee.

The current gasoline tax funding mechanism doesn't work for electric and alternative fuel vehicles. That is a real problem. And vehicle to "vehicle" communication is mostly intended to be used to detect the use of specific roads and send people a bill. Really what is being talked about is putting transponders on cars, which is almost completely useless for autonomous collision avoidance and navigation.

Transponders will allow things like a dynamic congestion tax, where just reading in the odometer and charging a flat road tax based on total miles driven won't allow the kind of fine grained taxation and control that makes bureaucrats giddy. From their perspective wouldn't it be great to be able to control traffic at the push of a button simply by increasing the cost of certain routes. That is a win-win. You could clear a route and make more money at the same time.

For that and other reasons I oppose government mandates around vehicle transponders. Transponders don't help with autonomous vehicles. It is a tax thing. And could very easily be used as a tool of oppression.

It is the road network equivalent of the Internet network neutrality debate. But it is being marketed as something to do with autonomous vehicles.

Comment Re:WTF??? (Score 1) 276

What we're seeing here folks is an outgoing president going into full "my legacy" mode. This frequently looks similar to "full retard" but the prez gets a pass...

It is an Al Gore "I invented the Internet" moment... except Al Gore actually did help lift the ban on commercial use of the Internet. Obama is just kinda suggesting that the Federal government and states shouldn't ban autonomous cars yet. But if anything the whole vehicle to vehicle communications issue is going to delay autonomous cars if they end up requiring some trillion dollar roll out of vehicle to vehicle communications before they allow cars to stop killing people.

Comment Re:Step 1 - Don't (Score 1) 197

The best thing that can result in this type of divide and conquer approach is when you realize a thousand lines of code is pretty much necessary for doing one thing and there is a one line code solution for that functionality. That feels good and it has happened to me more than once... with other people's code of course.

The most important keys on the programmers keyboard are backspace and delete keys. Followed closely by or preceded by Ctrl-a.

Comment Re:Paper rockets (Score 1) 155

Paper rockets for a has-been nation. Obama killed NASA heavy launch and gave us fake, unfunded programs. Go talk to China or India if you want progress.

Are you sure this was Obamas's doing? I thought these sort of funding decisions was down to congress?

The president can have great visions, but in the end depends on congress to allow them to happen.

The president's study on the future of human space flight suggested a manned mission to an asteroid as a next step because it would be a more doable milestone, we could pick the easiest asteroid to get to and back from and it would give us experience in deep space without having to also get us back off the surface of Mars which essentially doubles all the mission cost and risk.

An asteroid mission was a practical milestone (despite my own initially poor reaction) but not very sexy, so they went back to the 'Ya sure we are going to Mars' because that has captured the public imagination and Hollywood more than any other destination. Fortunately (or unfortunately depending on your view) it has not captured the public's wallets enough to fund it and it isn't clear that NASA actually has any intention to fund it, but it is still using Mars as a PR tool to help fund all the incremental stuff they are doing.

I think in the long term it further undermines NASA's credibility to be using Mars as PR for a bunch of other potentially worthwhile stuff they are doing. But for now, everything is about Mars, and getting there, and then... studying the shit out of a bunch of dead rocks. Except it really isn't.

Comment Re:EFF not for Freedom any more? (Score 1) 143

Yes. But that's not "freedom", it's something else. Perhaps the EFF should rename itself to the Electronic Ethics Police if they're going to change roles to enforcing an ethical code on others using governments and courts.

A company intimately collaborating with any government to suppress freedom of speech is very much a threat to Freedom and a worthwhile cause.

Comment Re:EFF not for Freedom any more? (Score 3, Insightful) 143

But why is it the EFF's concern? Shouldn't the EFF be arguing against court actions that encumber data equipment sales?

Are they for electronic freedom, or are they just another leftist grievance profiteer?

Filing Amicus briefs are what organizations like EFF, ACLU and NRA do in cases they want to support or oppose. In this case, I think it depends on the facts of the case which should come out in discovery. It could be that CISCO did in fact have people actually customizing code and hardware to specifically target these groups, in which case they crossed a line that should make them liable.

EFF exists to promote freedom. If companies are actively engaged in suppressing free speech and harming people that are expressing themselves in ways that don't promote violence online then they damn well should be making those companies pay a high price for their unethical behavior. On the other hand if CISCO just provided some technology and it happened to be used for unethical purposes without their active participation then I agree that companies should be free to sell their technology without being liable for how others choose to use it. And EFF would be on the wrong side if they were claiming a broader form of liability. Like saying Ford should be liable if someone it sells a car to decides to mow down a bunch of pedestrians.

The key is whether CISCO crossed a line and whether there is enough evidence that they did in order to trigger discovery which would force CISCO to provide relevant documents and witnesses. Without reading the case I think that is hard to say. But often these types of products come with support packages that could have involved specific customization.

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