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Comment: Re:And also... (Score 1) 315

by cmarkn (#42038133) Attached to: GIF Becomes Word of the Year 2012
No, not pedantic, simply wrong. What separates acronyms, like GIF, from initialisms, like FS and HDD, is that they are pronounced as words while initialisms are spelled out (eg, eff-ess, aitch-dee-dee). There wouldn't be this distinction if the words were always to be "elongated" as you propose. The only people who would write out the full term are lawyers, who historically got paid by the word and therefore developed the silly, pretentious language of their trade (Lawyer language).

NBC Erases SNL Sketch From Digital Archive For Fear of Copyright Lawsuit 128

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the nbc-plans-to-sue-nbc dept.
M.Nunez writes with a tale of copyright woes. From the article: "The digital 'Saturday Night Live' archive does not feature a recent Bruno Mars sketch because it includes impersonations of pop singers and their chart-topping hits. Bruno Mars sings several songs that are not owned by NBC, so it can be presumed that the company refrained from uploading the sketch into its digital archive to avoid any legal issues. Convoluted music licensing laws have essentially erased the Bruno Mars sketch from the digital archives of SNL. In the short comedy sketch, Bruno Mars impersonates vocal performances by Billie Joe Armstrong (Green Day), Steven Tyler (Aerosmith), Katy Perry, Justin Bieber, Louis Armstrong, and Michael Jackson. The sketch cannot be found on or Hulu, as a short clip or in either full editions of the episode."

Comment: Re:What about the non-junk? (Score 1) 147

by cmarkn (#41562089) Attached to: Boeing Proposes Using Gas Clouds To Bring Down Orbital Debris

You've just described the flaw in the plan: who would buy such a thing? Boeing isn't going to build them out of the goodness of their heart. The people who put satellites up would benefit from clearing out the orbit they want to use, but that is nowhere near as simple as putting one of these sweepers into that orbit, only retrograde, because of all the different orbits of the debris that intersects it. It would be ridiculously expensive to try to clear one orbit for one satellite.

What we have here is an example of a tragedy of the commons because no one owns the valuable space where satellites live. Perhaps an international consortium of space-faring nations could claim it all and put orbits up for auction, then use the proceeds to clean it up?

Comment: Re:Missing the point to enjoy their their own voic (Score 2) 409

by cmarkn (#41499773) Attached to: Aircraft Carriers In Space

If the ship you are searching for has been in one spot for more than three minutes when you jump in, then it can be seen immediately. More precisely, for whatever time t it has been sitting, it can be seen at distance d = ct, where c is the speed of light, because light from it has filled a sphere that large. Meanwhile the ship that jumped in starts emitting infrared and reflecting starlight to create the lightsphere in which it is visible.

So the cylons could jump to three light minutes out, shoot beam weapons for 2:59 and then jump away before the Colonials even know they've arrived.

So here's another thing: if the dradis works ftl, then there ought to be a way to use that same technology to create a tight, high-powered beam of "dradis radiation" that works at the same speed as dradis. Then the same equation applies but in which c is the speed of dradis.

"Look! There! Evil!.. pure and simple, total evil from the Eighth Dimension!" -- Buckaroo Banzai