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We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).

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Comment: Re:Why bother? (Score 1) 97

Because it will be immensely valuable in the long run to be able to move asteroids around.

And it makes sense to start with something small to gain experience at doing it.

And although a 4 m astro-boulder is "small" as asteroids go, it weighs on the order of 100 tonnes - making it roughly the same mass as the largest single payload ever orbited from Earth (more precisely probably about half the mass of that largest payload on a Saturn V). Seems like a good place to start.

Also this is boulder, being a CI carbonaceous chondrite is a very interesting object for scientific study. We have pieces of these that have fallen to Earth, but they are always contaminated. Obtaining pristine samples, and being able to obtain cores, will be also be immensely valuable scientifically.

Comment: Re:the US 'probably' wont use a nuke first.... (Score 1) 341

by careysub (#49339969) Attached to: Feds Attempt To Censor Parts of a New Book About the Hydrogen Bomb

Nagasaki was the one area of Japan that was heavily Christian. The United States had the opportunity to bomb military or government targets. Instead they chose to bomb civilians.

The Hiroshima bomb was dropped on the southwest corner of the Japanese Second General Army HQ, a base of over 20,000 soldiers, and which directed the defense of Kyushu, which was the site of the planned U.S. invasion in the autumn. Hiroshima was the principal port city supplying this army.

The "Nagasaki" bomb was actually assigned to Kokura Arsenal, the largest intact purely military target in Japan. The unescorted bomber was unable to bomb Kokura Arsenal due to fighter opposition, and ended up dropping the bomb on the only target it could reach with its remaining fuel (Nagasaki was its tertiary target).

So the U.S. actually targeted high value military targets, not just "bombing civilians".

Comment: Re:Good (Score 1) 172

by careysub (#49263477) Attached to: Lawsuit Over Quarter Horse's Clone May Redefine Animal Breeding

It is an economic venture in exactly the same way as any other gambling entertainment industry is an economic venture.

Horse racing is supported by the people who bet on the race, plus whatever revenue that rich hobbyists (and their quite a few) choose to pump into it.

Sure, for the people raising horses to supply the racing industry with, it is a job or a business, as their position dictates.

Comment: Re:Or Course they will never allow it (Score 1) 172

by careysub (#49263449) Attached to: Lawsuit Over Quarter Horse's Clone May Redefine Animal Breeding

...

And it won't kill off the whole normal breeding aspect - as cloning won't be getting you improvements, just copies of what you already have. Even the purists that are currently venomous about cloning would have much to gain. Once they naturally-breed a better horse, they'll be able to clone it for their own use - they won't be back to square one when the horse dies or needs to be put down...

Interestingly, no one appears able to breed a better race horse.

The trend line of winning race finish times shows no improvement in 70 years!

It appears that conventional breeding long ago reached the maximum potential of this closed gene pool. So cloning is not going to hold the hobby back. Remember, every entry into the Stud Book requires genotyped proof these days that it is the descendant of other horses already in the Stud Book. As one might expect for a hobby created by the idle landed aristocrats in England in the early 17th Century (the founding stallion, Byerly Turk, was bred in the 1680s), you only get to play if you have the right breeding. A faster horse with outside breeding is beneath their notice.

Comment: Poor Choice of Metric in Summary (Score 1) 224

by careysub (#49116671) Attached to: 100 Years of Chemical Weapons

It greatly underrates the significance of poison gas in WWI so summarize is as "Even though poison gas didn't end up becoming an efficient killing weapon on WWI battlefields...".

The most effective agents available in WWI were an extremely efficient in causing casualties, that is, putting men out of action, with crippling injuries in many cases.

Just one chemical agent, mustard gas, caused 14% of all British battle casualties, despite being introduced late in the war, and not being available on the scale that the German's wished to use it. One a shell-for-shell basis it was 6 times as effective as high explosives in putting men out of action.

Comment: Re:Vitamin Testing (Score 1) 958

by careysub (#49076507) Attached to: Science's Biggest Failure: Everything About Diet and Fitness

You omit that adding vitamins to flour is routine in modern countries - this was how nutrient deficiencies in rural areas were wiped out. The modern diet has even more vitamins than traditional ones, due to routine supplementation, which contributes to the fact that except possibly for vitamin D nearly everyone gets adequate vitamin intake.

Comment: Re:Mod parent up. (Score 1) 958

by careysub (#49076403) Attached to: Science's Biggest Failure: Everything About Diet and Fitness

actually they aren't "vegan-friendly"

They're made with refined sugar, which is processed with charcoal made from animal bones (bone char... google it)

**disclaimer... not vegan due to dietary requirements and genetic syndromes. But Buddhist and an active animal rights supporter**

Then by all means you should avoid sugar made 75 years ago, when "bone char" was commonly used. Modern activated carbon, used in modern sugar plants, would be exceedingly unlikely to use that as a carbon source: plant wastes and petroleum residues are the rule today, and the most modern sugar plants use ion exchange resins for purification and no carbon filtering at all.

Comment: Re: "Energy Balance" an overly simplistic view (Score 1) 958

by careysub (#49075753) Attached to: Science's Biggest Failure: Everything About Diet and Fitness

Nutrition labels include fiber as carbohydrate when doing the calorie calculation. Check some labels for yourself (kCal per gram for carbohydrates and proteins is 4, fats are 9). In actuality the average effective calorie content for a gram of fiber is more like 1.5, so you are getting a little bit of a dieting bonus when going by the label when eating high fiber food. But not many Americans eat more than 20 g of fiber a day, so the daily difference is rarely larger than 50 kCal.

Comment: Re:uh... (Score 4, Interesting) 215

by careysub (#49013969) Attached to: Silk Road Drug Dealer Pleads Guilty After Federal Sting

Right, because legalizing something instantly removes the criminal aspect. Look at Colorado. Legalized marijuana and the Mexican gangs are moving in to supply cheaper product.

Citation please? I did some Googling to confirm this claim, but found nothing supporting it. The claim itself is odd, how is there more money to be made in a legal regulated market?

I did find this however. The story asserts that Mexican gangs are getting involved in the Colorado pot business for money laundering since it is a cash only business. In other words, they aren't really selling pot, only pretending to do so to legalize money from other sources.

And why is Colorado pot a cash only business? Because Federal pressure prevents them from using the same payment processing and banking systems other legal businesses use. Banks and payment processors won't take their money or the Feds will drop the hammer on them. In other words, the Federal government is creating this business opportunity by prohibiting normal business practice. If you prohibited any other business from using banks, forcing them to be cash only, the same thing would happen.

Comment: Re:that's a theory. Tx technology before shale (Score 4, Insightful) 484

by careysub (#48819841) Attached to: IEEE: New H-1B Bill Will "Help Destroy" US Tech Workforce

That article expresses one theory. Of course it doesn't mention the fact that the economy in Texas has been besting the national average since long before the shale boom. Since right about time we started electing Republican governors, of turns out.

But saying it doesn't make it so. You cite no metric, or evidence, or source to support - or even clearly define - your claim.

Lets take a look to see if this is real, or good old Texas bragging.

Since the current Republican hold on the governorship began with Bush in 1995, lets look at an actual chart of Texas relative performance. What we see is that the ratio of the Texas per capital GDP to that of the overall U.S. sank after 1997 (it did worse than the rest of the nation) and did not recover to its same relative economic performance until 2010, with the recovery occurring after 2006 --- or just at the time oil shale arrested Texas's declining oil production.

So no, your claim is a fantasy.

I charted the data and like looked anxiously to see which party had better economic growth. It turned out that both parties had years of high growth and low, all over the place. The chart made one thing very obvious, though. Economic growth had ALWAYS improved under every Republican administration, and always got worse under every Democrat administration's budgets. No exceptions.

My, my, my. What a nice little story. Full of angst, with a surprise, and to you, heart-warming ending.

It is a shame we have only your word that you didn't just, you know, make this all up. You cite no specific figures for any administration, or overall figures, that could be easily checked to see if you did any of the math correctly. I guess you figured that everyone would have to perform (I won't say "replicate") the whole analysis to check to see if you aren't just blowing smoke.

Problem is, lots of other people have done this exact same analysis, and consistently come to the opposite conclusion. Just try Googling it. Look for example at the Conservative British economics journal The Economist. Their analysis is interesting because they find it embarrassing to admit and look for ways to turn a silk purse into a pig's ear.

Comment: Re:Does it really matter now? (Score 1) 187

Well, Pythagorean theorem was discovered* in Greece by the Greek... Pythagora! (* provided the first recorded proof, so...)

Except for the fact that there is no recorded proof by Pythagoras, and indeed no evidence at all that he had one. What we have is simply a statement of the relationship - which was known to the Egyptians and Babylonians a millenia or two before.

As Manjul Bhargava observes (you did read TFA, didn't you?) if surviving recorded proof is the standard then the theorem is Chinese.

In no standard of evidence does Pythagoras get priority.

Comment: Re:What exactly do you mean by "Fraud"? (Score 1) 786

by careysub (#48787213) Attached to: Michael Mann: Swiftboating Comes To Science

It isn't corroborated by reality since global average temperatures have not followed the predictions of that model.

Mann wasn't working on "a model". He was analyzing historical data of what has actually happened , and that work has been amply corroborated, and a lot of additional supporting data has since been uncovered by research.

Thanks for showing that you have no idea what you are talking about.

Comment: Ancient India DID Discover the Pythagorean Theorem (Score 1) 381

Seriously - this is not in dispute in any way. A statement of the theorem and proofs appear in both the Baudhayana Sulba Sutra and the Apastamba Sulba Sutra, and this has been known in the West for a couple of centuries at least.

Whether Indians discovered it before Pythagoras is a different question, and the answer seems to be "most likely". The dating of the authorship of the aforementioned sutras is uncertain - the latest dates offered are after Pythagoras, but earlier dates (which seem stronger) push it one to three centuries before Pythagoras.

I am surprised to see this being held up to ridicule here.

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