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Comment: Your primary duty.... (Score 4, Insightful) 1255

by claykarmel (#44733887) Attached to: Why One Woman Says Sending Your Kid To Private School Is Evil

Your primary duty is to your child. I promise you, responsible parents agonize about the best options for their children. Sometimes private, sometimes public.

We started private and then left. The early years at private were probably worthwhile. I tell myself that. They were expensive.

But we've been delighted with the quality of our public schools. They operate from one third the budget of the private school (per pupil). The buildings and landscaping are dramatically tougher, but we're happy with the change. The teachers have been high quality, highly dedicated to the job and responsive to us. My kids are engaged and enjoy their schools.

You have essentially no control over the private school or the public school. In both cases, you will monitor your kids' work, talk regularly to their teachers, meet their friends and their friends' parents. Your recourse in both cases is to find a different school.

No one should demonize a parent for trying to do the best they can for their child. Your first duty is to your child. Social welfare and activism should come after family.

+ - Climate change poll

Submitted by claykarmel
claykarmel (78187) writes "Not a scoop. A suggestion for a poll.

"Your position on Climate Change"
a) Believe it (not a researcher)
b) Know it (and can prove it)
c) Skeptic
d) Believe Climate Change is a hoax
e) Know Climate Change is a hoax (and can prove it)
f) Suspect CC is caused mostly by hot air about CC"

Comment: Viruses may accelerate mutations (Score 1) 190

by claykarmel (#37234922) Attached to: Neanderthal Sex Boosted Immunity In Modern Humans

This makes some sense. Homo Sapiens may have evolved through particularly rapid evolution. If viruses (virii -- what a word) play a role in genetic mutation, which I think is now a commonly held theory, Homo Sapiens might have 'stabilized' by boosting their immunity with some Neanderthal genes.

It's easy to imagine that slower-evolving species would have better immunity, if the virus theory is right.

Subsequent natural forces would probably discriminate against the offspring which were stupid, giving the best of both worlds -- smart and comparatively immune.

I'm not trained in biology -- just remembering other 'stuff that matters'. (early Homo Sapiens were sickly and smart? And then came to rule the world? I'd say that's News for Nerds.)

Comment: A lot of confusion - here's what they are doing (Score 1) 140

by claykarmel (#36961728) Attached to: Ground-Based GPS Mimic Is Inch Perfect

There is a lot of confusion among the early commenters. Some think this is a form of differential GPS, some think this is a network of WiFi devices, or a hybrid of WiFi and FM radio.

It appears to be none of the above.

It most likely is a pseudo-lite (a terrestrial device which mimics a satellite), except that it does not operate in the GPS (L1 or L2) band(s). The government, researchers, FAA and Air Force (which runs GPS) are working on real pseudolites which may run in the GPS bands. But this private company couldn't get rights to do that, so they are transmitting in 'the same band(s) used by WiFi. That is, they are broadcasting spread spectrum signals in the ISM band(s).

They apparently scatter a number of these, at highly precise locations, and a compatible user device would then listen to several and calculate its own position. Since their geometry is as flat as the nearby terrain, they will have very poor altitude accuracy, but because they don't have bending or delays in the atmosphere (or rather, those inaccuracies are trivial in comparison), they will likely have very good 2D accuracy.

Notice that things flying over the top of these devices would likely have good 3D (the geometry improves for them).

What is less clear is why this is preferable to using DGPS. DGPS is a 'station' at a known location which can measure the errors of each satellite (including bending/delay) and transmits corrections to nearby devices. DGPS is a government service in many areas, I believe, but can be set up as a private service, too.

The one real liability to the new Locata system, if I understand it (and I probably don't) is that they don't necessarily use GPS time. One of the really fabulous things about GPS is that it established a world-wide synchronous, highly accurate clock. In many applications that may not matter. It does for a lot of systems which rely on GPS time (too many to mention nowadays).


Survey Shows That Fox News Makes You Less Informed 1352

Posted by samzenpus
from the fair-balanced-and-simple dept.
A survey of American voters by World Public Opinion shows that Fox News viewers are significantly more misinformed than consumers of news from other sources. One of the most interesting questions was about President Obama's birthplace. 63 percent of Fox viewers believe Obama was not born in the US (or that it is unclear). In 2003 a similar study about the Iraq war showed that Fox viewers were once again less knowledgeable on the subject than average. Let the flame war begin!
Social Networks

Journalist Tricked Captors Into Twitter Access 141

Posted by Soulskill
from the 140-characters-of-freedom dept.
itwbennett writes "Kosuke Tsuneoka, a Japanese freelance journalist held captive in Afghanistan since April 1, was released over the weekend. His freedom came a day after he sent two Twitter messages from a captor's phone. 'i am still allive [sic], but in jail,' read a message sent at 1:15 p.m. GMT on Friday. It was followed a few minutes later with a second message, also in English, that read, 'here is archi in kunduz. in the jail of commander lativ.' The message referred to the Dasht-e-Archi district of Kunduz where he was being held. On Tuesday, speaking in Tokyo, Tsuneoka revealed how he managed to convince his captors to give him access to the Internet. 'He asked me if I knew how to use it, so I had a look and explained it to him,' said Tsuneoka. 'I called the customer care number and activated the phone,' he said."

Geek Squad Sends Cease-and-Desist Letter To God Squad 357

Posted by samzenpus
from the who-would-jesus-sue dept.
An anonymous reader writes "A Wisconsin priest has God on his car but Best Buy's lawyers on his back. Father Luke Strand at the Holy Family Parish in Fond Du Lac says he has received a cease-and-desist letter from the electronics retailer. From the article: 'At issue is Strand's black Volkswagen Beetle with door stickers bearing the name "God Squad" in a logo similar to that of Best Buy's Geek Squad, a group of electronics troubleshooters. Strand told the Fond du Lac Reporter that the car is a creative way to spur discussion and bring his faith to others. Best Buy Co. tells the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that it appreciates what Strand is trying to do, but it's bad precedent to let groups violate its trademarks.'"
The Courts

SCO v. Novell Goes To the Jury 67

Posted by timothy
from the perhaps-it's-the-oj-jury dept.
Excelcia writes "Closing arguments in the six and a bit year old slander of title case between SCO and Novell occurred today and the case is finally in the hands of the jury. It's been an interesting case, with SCO alternately claiming that the copyrights to UNIX did get transferred to them, and that the copyrights should have been transferred to them. 'Judge Ted Stewart said, after the jury left to begin to deliberate, that in all his years on the bench, he's never seen such fine lawyering as in this case.' We're not going to find out the results until at least Tuesday, however, as one juror is taking a long weekend. Great lawyering notwithstanding, we can all hope next week that the Energizer bunny of all spurious lawsuits will finally go away."

How the TSA Plans On Inspecting Your Monkey 114

Posted by samzenpus
from the I'm-gonna-need-to-check-your-monkey dept.
The uncertainty of what might happen to your service monkey at an airport security checkpoint won't keep you awake at night anymore, thanks to the TSA. They have issued an easy to follow list of how they will ensure your helper monkey won't go all Planet of the Apes on your flight. Some of the security techniques used to make sure your primate is not a terrorist include: "Security Officers will conduct a visual inspection on the service monkey and will coach the handler on how to hold the monkey during the visual inspection. The inspection process may require that the handler to take off the monkey's diaper as part of the visual inspection."

Seinfeld's Good Samaritan Law Now Reality? 735

Posted by samzenpus
from the not-that-there-is-anything-wrong-with-that dept.
e3m4n writes "The fictitious 'good samaritan' law from the final episode of Seinfeld (the one that landed them in jail for a year) appears to be headed toward reality for California residents after the house passed this bill. There are some differences, such as direct action is not required, but the concept of guilt by association for not doing the right thing is still on the face of the bill."

Apple Orders 10 Million Tablets? 221

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the pricepoint-better-be-right dept.
Arvisp writes "According to a blog post by former Google China president Kai-Fu Lee, Apple plans to produce nearly 10 million tablets in the still-unannounced product's first year. If Lee's blog post is to be believed, Apple plans to sell nearly twice as many tablets as it did iPhones in the product's first year."

Yellowstone Supervolcano Larger Than First Thought 451

Posted by timothy
from the even-superer dept.
drewtheman writes "New studies of the plumbing that feeds the Yellowstone supervolcano in Wyoming's Yellowstone National Park shows the plume and the magma chamber under the volcano are larger than first thought and contradicts claims that only shallow hot rock exists. University of Utah research professor of geophysics Robert Smith led four separate studies that verify a plume of hot and molten rock at least 410 miles deep that rises at an angle from the northwest."

Comment: Be Proactive (Score 1) 1006

by claykarmel (#30089152) Attached to: Software Piracy At the Workplace?

Write a brief (1 to 2 page) plan for the CEO about how to 'better manage' licenses on company computers. The plan should focus on incremental improvement (what to install on new computers, what to install when asked on existing computers).

Have the plan oriented to save money and reduce obligations of share ware. Give a few options, but don't preach about software philosophy.

Advise the CEO, NOT IN WRITING, of some of your concerns for legacy computers, and show him that you're committed to continuous improvement in this area. Remind him that the BSA wields a heavy hammer, and to be mindful of angry ex-employees who might take advantage.

CEO's like plans with no immediate funding requirement, low stress on the organization, and continuous improvement. Write your plan assuming the BSA will eventually read it - that is, don't incriminate yourself or the company.

Put not your trust in money, but put your money in trust.