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Comment: Re:Why Apple? (Score 1) 191

by Maxo-Texas (#48631699) Attached to: Investigation: Apple Failing To Protect Chinese Factory Workers

Because apple may have problems selling their devices when the public is informed of the horrific abuses (deaths, suicide, maiming, cancer) involved in their pretty products.

When opens users of iphones up to comments from others about how evil their phones are and how could they buy a phone built with such evil methods. And when they are made to think about how evil the build process is- some of them feel uncomfortable.

And because apple builds enough of the devices that it can be identified by reporters unlike many other essentially anonymous unknown products that are less famous.

Comment: Re:Always (Score 1) 130

So why can't they properly take into account time?

Because the original set up may be buried in time. You find a wind-turbine turning, the wind is blowing. Merely by measuring the speed of each how can you tell which came first? (Yes, I know ... you compare the noise profile of the respective data sets.)

But now back to dwelling exclusively on the potential problems without acknowledging any even limited usefulness of this methodology might have ...

Comment: Re:No problem. (Score 1) 130

[I]t deserves a more accurate headline: new statistical test can form confidence bounds for how unlikely a it would be for a new parameter to be of this magnitude if there were causation: when combined with existing test it may discredit more potential claims of causation than previously practical.

Did you really need to give it such an obviously click-baity title?

Comment: Re:Neville Chamberlin was not available for commen (Score 2) 227

by Rei (#48630561) Attached to: "Team America" Gets Post-Hack Yanking At Alamo Drafthouse, Too

Germany was spending far more on their military during that time than Britain was. If Britain and France had stepped in earlier, Germany would have been totally unprepared and the war would have ended quickly. Not to mention all of the horrors of the Holocaust that would have been prevented.

If Britain and France had managed to delay the war to "prepare" even more, say a few years, the Luftwaffe would have been dominated by jets, German ballistic missiles would have been longer range and more precise, and they might even have become a nuclear power. I really don't think this is the analogy you're looking for.

Comment: Subtitle Sunglasses (Score 1) 64

by Simonetta (#48630349) Attached to: Ars Reviews Skype Translator

This speech translator is trés cool.

For a while I've been bugging techies with my conception of 'subtitle sunglasses'. These would be 'ordinary' glasses that would have microphones and nano-technology CPUs inside the frame. The microphones would hear the speech of the person that you are looking at (who is speaking a foreign language), translate that speech into English, and display the text of the translation onto the bottom of the user's frame. Like subtitles in a foreign movie for those of you who have ever seen a subtitled foreign movie. Many Germans haven't. The power to operate these 'subtitle sunglasses' would come from the generators creating electricity from the movement's of the user's head.

I challenge teckies to approximate how long in the future it will be before this kind of product is available for purchase in the $500 range.

One unusually aspect of Moore's Law is that we can project when a product like this will be actually available. We take the cost of making any science fiction concept using today's technology and use future-value calculations of accounting to project a future price time-frame given that the price of the technology will fall by half every 18 months.

Another trick is to use this example as a crude intelligence IQ test. Claim that the Japanese have actually developed 'subtitle sunglasses' but they only translate English into Japanese. Claim that you have been able to obtain a secret advanced prototype of such glasses. Give an ordinary pair of reading glasses to a person and claim that these are actual real 'subtitle sunglasses' that have tiny speakers that create synthetic spoken sound inside the ears. Invite them to try them on. When they put on the glasses, start speaking in Japanese (learn a few phrases well beforehand). The time that it takes them to realize that you are completely bulllshitting them is an indication of how intelligent they are. Hope that they don't get violent.

Comment: Re: And where are all the hurricanes? (Score 1) 185

by Capsaicin (#48630305) Attached to: Last Three Years the Quietest For Tornadoes Ever

Although "suggest" is far from a confident prediction, I agree Mann is overstating the case made in the paper he cites for the claim "models suggest more frequent and intense storms in a warmed world."

However that paper cited is itself very interesting --and thanks for bringing my attention to it! It's by Kerry Emmanuel, who was one of the joint authors in that Knutson et al. (2010) I cited above --which given the range of expert opinion (ie. from Emmanuel all the way to the sceptic Chris Landsea) carries some gravitas.

What Emmanuel is doing here is "downscaling" (which is to insert more localised modelling into the global model), a technique which has been shown with regard to temperatures, to have given results which more closely match recent short-term trends (for which reason alone they are not to be preferred over long-term global models). I've not had time to study this paper in detail (I suggest you might, along with the earlier Knutson paper), but applying this technique apparently gives a different result from that of the raw global models with increases in both frequency as well as intensity. However, we must not fall victim to latest paper syndrome, I doubt this is the last word on longer-term prediction regarding tropical storm formation and intensity. I'd like to see what Landsea's team makes of this for a start. But an interesting paper nonetheless, thanks.

The reason I suggest you ought to shy away from blogs, opinion pieces and interviews in favour of the actual science as published in reputable scholarly journals, should be clear when you measure the loose language that is thrown around on those fora as compared to the mathematical accuracy required of real science. This is obvious from the previous Mann article you cite, e.g. what "if I were a betting man," (is that a serious scientific prediction or just a "vibe"), means rather vague.

If you want a serious understanding of the current science, -- if you want to know if Cook, Mann, or Watts and Mcintyre for that matter, are straying from the bona fide science; if you want something better than some filtered mythological view of the science --you have little choice but to do the hard yards and read actual papers.

Merry Christmas!

Comment: Re:Never attribute to stupidity (Score 1) 571

by Rei (#48626209) Attached to: Reaction To the Sony Hack Is 'Beyond the Realm of Stupid'

Propaganda campaign by who? I think Singer needs to check his haughtiness at the door:

the ability to steal gossipy emails from a not-so-great protected computer network is not the same thing as being able to carry out physical, 9/11-style attacks in 18,000 locations simultaneously. I can't believe I'm saying this. I can't believe I have to say this."

Except, of course, for the fact that the prime suspect is the hand-picked hacker squad of the Hollywood-obsessed leader of a nuclear armed state with ICBMs, whose family's Hollywood obsession has gone to such extremes in the past as kidnapping filmmakers and forcing at them at gunpoint to make movies for them. I can't believe I'm saying this. I can't believe I have to say this.

Comment: Re:Yeah, sure, any day now... (Score 1) 65

by Maxo-Texas (#48623871) Attached to: A Domain Registrar Is Starting a Fiber ISP To Compete With Comcast

I think you would agree that if a farmer is 20 miles from any other connection point that no company or municipality should be legally required to run that farmer a line and charge the same price as they do for a line in an urban neighborhood.

If we decide that we want to provide that as the federal government- cool. Tho it would be pretty damn irritating to find we are running subsidized internet out to some wealthy lady's wilderness estate because she put in 10 acres of hay.

There are alternative solutions (like satellite) but they are more expensive. And that's the trade off you get for living away from other people. You can't share services and costs. You don't pay city taxes.

Everything we decide to do is a trade off. Alaskan Fishermen who are maimed and even killed while fishing for us don't get inexpensive high speed internet either. Neither do game wardens living in remote lodges in national parks. And we don't provide any of them the same level of police, fire, and water service either.

It's not a question of saying they do or do not deserve it. It's prioritization of limited resources. Do you run high speed internet to Fred the Farmer for $20,000 or do you pave a street or buy a new fire engine or buy the new police cruiser?

Especially when changes in technology may allow Fred the farmer to have high speed internet for $120 a month in a couple years.

But if we had unlimited resources- sure. Give the farmer's high speed internet with no extra charge for the extra hardware they require.

Comment: Re:And where are all the hurricanes? (Score 1) 185

by Capsaicin (#48623311) Attached to: Last Three Years the Quietest For Tornadoes Ever

John Cook

Shouldn't really have allowed him as he's not, from my understanding, actually a publishing climte scientist. The article is about extreme weather events not about topical storm formation per se. That being said the by-line (most likely the work of a sub-editor) does state "cyclones ... will become more commonplace." That clearly is to mistate the science as it is currently understood.

In the body Cook himself (as we can now assume) writes " our physical understanding of climate tells us global warming will cause the water cycle to grow more intense. This means both more heavy downpours and more intense drought" which downpours may or may not relate to tropical storms. Given however that this statement is in an article which leads with a description of Cyclone Yasi I think it would not be unreasonable for a reader to infer that Cook is claiming that tropical storms will increase in frequency just as other extreme events will.

So I will accept that, Cooks status notwithstanding, as fairly good example to prove your point.

Michael Mann

There can be no question he is a "climate scientist of ... note." However he doesn't seem to deal with the question of hurricanes formation, but rather tornado formation. It is also an odd article to chose since in it Mann is rejecting the notion that he is with any certainty predicting an increase in Tornado frequency. In fact defending his "betting-man" quote as being out of context and not adequately conveying his doubt. He states definitively "It is in fact too early to tell whether global warming is influencing tornado activity." [Orig. emphasis]

In summary that citation is not to the point, and even if the point were tornado formation, it hardly bears the accusation out.

James Hansen

Again a notable climate scientist, but I'm sorry I'm not listening to a >1hr talk just to see if he actually is stating the science as predicting an increase in tropical storm formation. I'll presume like Mann, he is not. Can you quote or give the time when you think this happens?

You might have mail.