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Comment: Re:APPS? x86 *APPS* (Score 1) 77

by drinkypoo (#49800587) Attached to: Emulator Now Runs x86 Apps On All Raspberry Pi Models

What the fuck ever happened to "program", "application", "software", or "code"?

It's never been unusual to call a program an application even in the Unix or PC world, but it's been standard to call programs "apps" in the Mac community since forever, because they have been known as "applications" in the official MacOS system parlance since forever - hence the file type flag of APPL and not PROG, SOFT, or CODE.

Comment: Re:Who dies from old age? (Score 1) 626

by Kjella (#49800527) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Happens If We Perfect Age Reversing?

And people don't usually die of "old age" but of things related to it. When the body gets older, the immune system gets weaker, your bones and muscles decay, your brain gets messed up, and a lot of deaths are in reality just a mix of a bunch of factors that just result in the body kind of shutting down. None of that will happen anymore.

And there's a feedback loop here too, because you a) have less life left to live and b) is generally weaker you get less treatment. A relative of mine is dying from cancer and it's low intensity life-prolonging treatment. If he was 20 years younger, they'd put him on high intensity drugs that would keep the cancer suppressed much, much longer. If he was 50 years younger, they'd probably try a full bone marrow transplant which is a massive procedure that is not only ridiculously expensive but likely to kill the old by itself. So being forever young wouldn't just avoid age-related diseases, it'd open up far stronger treatments as well.

Comment: Re: Exodus (Score 1) 626

by Kjella (#49800383) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Happens If We Perfect Age Reversing?

Even if it worked (I doubt), this does not mean that you stay young forever. You don't age normally, but all your joints will be used up purely mechanically. Not ageing does not equate to 'no wear'. It doesn't equate to 'no disease', and neither to 'no cancer'. Teeth will decay, nothing to do with age. Even parts of the heart will be used up and not regenerate.
In a nutshell, the non-ageing population segment will be zombies with artificial hips, joints, teeth, heart, and so forth.

Why artificial? All the blueprints are in my DNA. On severe burn victims they do muscle and skin grafts, with sufficiently advanced technology we could grow pretty much anything. The non-ethical way would be to just clone me, zap the higher brain functions and keep for 15 years in a vegetative state you'll have all the organs to fit an adult man. The ethical way would be to find ways to grow just that organ in a lab. It wouldn't be the cure to everything as you could have brain tumors and whatnot but you could get pretty far that way.

Comment: Re:I'm sure /. will ridicule it, but... (Score 2) 295

BTW, you call chemistry "basic"? Why is chemistry of any practical use to anyone but anyone but a chemist? I can't recall a single instance in my life when I had to apply any sort of chemistry-based knowledge.

Sigh. I'm shit at math but I can easily recognize many places where more math would improve my life, especially since I like to make things and customize them. By the same token I never got any chemistry (it was not required, and by the time I got to college I had other interests) but I can recognize that it would be cool to have more of it. Even cooking is chemistry, and a lot of that fancy-pants "molecular gastronomy" (what, other food doesn't have molecules?) stuff is applicable to more mundane foods. Or looking at the back of the shampoo bottle and knowing the difference between one thing and the next.

Let's apply that same logic to computer programming. How often are these kids going to be interacting with computers in their lifetimes?

A lot more deeply, odds are, if they're programmers. That's the point of teaching them young.

Might it not be handy to understand how those computers work, and perhaps even know how to write scripts to automate tasks, for instance?

Yeah, but you could do that without learning a whole lot about programming, simple if-then-else and pattern matching will cover most needs there. But programming is still very valuable. On the flip side, not all the kids will take to it, so spending a lot of time on it is probably a bad idea. They only make you spend a year or so on a foreign language (if that) in school, programming probably ought to receive about the same amount of mandatory attention.

Comment: Re:Power User? (Score 1) 343

by drinkypoo (#49795745) Attached to: The Tricky Road Ahead For Android Gets Even Trickier

Honest question, how do you directly modify your android OS due to the source code being available?

I don't. I indirectly enjoy the benefits: I am running SOKP on my Moto G. Before that, I ran similar AOKP-based Android releases on my Nexus 4 (before its digitizer and radio went tits up.) And before that, various community releases on my Xperia Play. In every case the rewards have been many and varied. These days I run ordinary kernels (no overclocking) and try to keep things simple.

The argument was over which phone was more like its desktop counterpart. Your argument applies equally to both platforms.

Is it just "hey look I can run top" or what?

Actually having a nice userland means being able to use your phone as a troubleshooting tool. You can actually do pretty well just by installing busybox (from the app, it's free, or there's some features you don't strictly need which won't cost you very much... or do it manually) and android terminal, as well as anysoftkeyboard plus the ssh layout, which you're going to want very much. But having the option to go Wayland one day means being able to recycle the phone, use it for other purposes. My oldest phone is now a clock and occasionally plays me some MP3s. It's not really worth selling.

Comment: Re:Agree and disagree here (Score 1) 267

This is in fact how the soviet union was able to compete for so long, but eventually it could not keep increasing the amount of resources that it mobilized.

I almost mentioned Russia in my comment - there was a time in the 1930s, when the US and Europe were stuck in the Depression, many Westerners thought that communism might end up totally eclipsing their (at the time) failed economies. And the USSR did grow from a nation of mostly peasants into an industrial superpower incredibly quickly. China has done much better so far, in large part because it mostly integrated with the global economy which was quick to take advantage of the cheap labor. But it is also making some of the same mistakes, as demonstrated by the "ghost cities", or the high-speed rail crash.

It is capitalism that more effectively makes better and better uses of the resources that are available, and its driven by greed.

I wouldn't say "greed", although that term certainly does apply in many cases; I would call it self interest, which isn't the same thing. The fact that our behavior (and economic activity) is greatly affected by incentives doesn't mean that we're greedy or foolish, it means we're human. It's amazing how many people on both the left and the right ignore this when it doesn't align nicely with their preferred policy goals.

Comment: Re:Agree and disagree here (Score 1) 267

These things, combined with a population advantage, guarantee China's success long-term absent any other forces.

Only up to a point. Part of the reason why China has been enjoying enormous rates of economic growth is that it had so far to go. Once their economy and standard of living starts to get much closer to that of the existing advanced industrial economies, and they lose their advantage of cheap labor, all they're left with is the population advantage. And they'll be busy strip-mining the third world in the meantime, which means they'll probably overreach sooner or later and piss everyone off as badly as the US has. (And the US at least has NATO allies, and reasonably friendly relations with neighboring countries.)

Comment: Re:Waste of Time & Money (Score 1) 267

I don't think the GP was limiting the scope to science missions - instead, we should also be developing robotic missions to prepare for eventual humans. And more than just robots; even stuff as relatively trivial as 3D printers will make the difference between sustainable human presence versus short-term missions that won't last. There are many other components: better radiation shielding, genetically optimized plants, improved solar cells, and so on.

Remember, ISS is only a few hundred feet up and it's still insanely expensive to service. If we want affordable permanent settlement on the moon or Mars, we need to limit the number of supply trips.

Comment: Re:instead of space race (Score 1) 267

A big part of the reason why this won't happen is that space-related technology tends to be inherently dual-use, i.e. much of it has military purposes. In fact, that's probably the single biggest reason why there was a space race at all in the 1950s/1960s. Since China is already known to be developing military capabilities specifically to counter the US navy/naval air, and has ongoing territorial disputes with at least five neighboring countries that I can think of offhand (several of which are close US allies), it would be ill-advised of the US to make it easier for them.

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