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Comment: Not-so-hidden agenda (Score 2) 134

by DerekLyons (#48647707) Attached to: Can Rep. John Culberson Save NASA's Space Exploration Program?

He would like to enact budget reforms that take funding decisions away from the Office of Management and Budget and gives them solely to Congress.

And there is the real prize - hidden in plain sight. He wants to usurp the power of the Executive Branch and arrogate it to Congress. But it's for the children!, er, NASA! and so it slides right by most commenters here.

Comment: Re:What took them so long? (Score 1) 189

by DerekLyons (#48647555) Attached to: Cyberattack On German Steel Factory Causes 'Massive Damage'

3.) "Why was this allowed?"

Because your typically ERP System SAP & Oracle to name the big to be frail twins does exactly this. It interconnects production, accounting, document maangement, it can control your whole material workflow.
All on the same system.
Yes, this is a weakness

Yes, it's a weakness - but it's also the whole point of having an integrated system in the first place. The armchair sysadmins here on Slashdot keep missing that point... these systems exist for a reason.

Comment: Re:Old news. (Score 1) 236

by Ol Olsoc (#48647073) Attached to: Study: Red Light Cameras Don't Improve Safety

Or, you know, just drive fucking slower so that you can safely stop in time.

True. Remember though, all actions have consequences. Driving slower, and leaving a safe distance between vehicles will slow traffic. Multiply that by the huge number of vehicles, and you have traffic issues, More cars in any area for a longer period of time.

This is in no way trying to excuse tailgating. I always leave a lot of space between myself and the next guy, both so that I avoid running into somoene's rear, and to give myself a buffer for the asshole behind me. But given that people like to ride as close as possible (as in maybe 4 feet) behind each other, I'm leaving maybe 60 feet at 35 mph, which would allow "normal" drivers to shoehorn in three vehicles.

Comment: Re:Study financed by (Score 1) 236

by Ol Olsoc (#48646463) Attached to: Study: Red Light Cameras Don't Improve Safety

Under these circumstances, the person found at fault will almost always be the person who rear-ended the car in front. If the car in front of you is stopping to avoid a red light, and you haven't allowed adequate distance to stop so you are forced to rear-end them, guess what? You are already a "high-risk" tailgating driver.

Yes, they were not in full control of their car. My point is not that they were not doing something they shouldn't have by following too closely, My point is that this system has made creating accidents where they wouldn't have otherwise happened an inherent part of the system. And that is batshit insane

Comment: Re:Shorten the working week (Score 1) 558

by argStyopa (#48646307) Attached to: What Happens To Society When Robots Replace Workers?

Because they're not "just feeding their family and keeping a roof over their heads"?

At least in the US, what we call "poor" are ridiculously well off by current world standards, and even very comfortable compared to relatively recent US norms. US "poor" typically have cell phones multiple tv's, computers, car(s) and a residence larger than middle class Europeans.
http://www.heritage.org/resear...

Living a life that would have comfortable in the 1970s - 1 cheap tv, no cable, no computer/internet, one cheapo car, no cell phone, smaller meal sizes, no convenience food - you could have a family of 4 right at the poverty line with out much trouble.

Comment: Re:Old news. (Score 1) 236

by Ol Olsoc (#48645111) Attached to: Study: Red Light Cameras Don't Improve Safety

The result was actually an increase in accidents because everyone had to start driving dangerously to avoid the cameras.

Nobody HAD to drive dangerously simply because the cameras were installed.

Otherwise I generally agree with you.

Depends on what you mean. I'f I'm going to have to pay over 500 dollars for a ticket, and you are tailgating me, as soon as the light turns yellow, I'm standing on them. 4 Wheels locked up. You will hit me from behind. It will be your fault, and a normal situation was just made more dangerous, because without the cameras, I'd just drive normally through the yellow light, and you wouldn't hit me. I don't want you to hit me, but if it's a choice between that fine, and the increase in my insurance rates possibly losing my license, or a relatively low speed rear ending - you gonna lose.

And people should never have to make decisions like that.

Comment: Re:Your reasoning is: (Score 2) 236

by Ol Olsoc (#48645093) Attached to: Study: Red Light Cameras Don't Improve Safety

People have been trying to make driving safer.

Driving is now safer.

Laws to make driving safer were therefore hysterical and stupid.

Nah, it's just that there needs to be a limit. MADD largely succeeded in their goal So far so good. Then they just switched to abolition. If we lowered the upper speed limit to 15 miles per hour, and made everyone wear helmets and 5 point seat belts there would be very few accidents, and we'd all be safer. But that pretty much is overreach.

Comment: Re:Study financed by (Score 1) 236

by Ol Olsoc (#48645071) Attached to: Study: Red Light Cameras Don't Improve Safety

it could be part of the revenue - how many of those rear end crashes were because the tailing driver wasn't paying attention and trying to keep going, and how many because the driver in front fancied a slow crash that was someone else's fault to sue for "whiplash injury" compensation?

Virtually all accidents are the fault of the driver who rear ends another. They weren't in control of their vehicle, even if you locked up your brakes. I know of none that aren't.

Comment: Re:Study financed by (Score 1) 236

by Ol Olsoc (#48645063) Attached to: Study: Red Light Cameras Don't Improve Safety

"The key part of ShanghaiBill's query was "in the intersections studied"." Of course. It's kind of hard to include statistics on intersections that have not been studied, and there are also often resource issues preventing the study of all intersections in a city.

In the end, I think that human ability to be incredibly corrupt is more the demise of these cameras than anything else. I have no doubt that cameras can increase safety in intersections. I also khave no doubt that they will always be abused, both from the non tax revenue stream and from quarterly profit motives.

Comment: Re:Study financed by (Score 2) 236

by Ol Olsoc (#48645051) Attached to: Study: Red Light Cameras Don't Improve Safety

Actually, it was ShangahiBill who attempted to move the goalposts. My original response was to his claim that " It isn't clear if yellow light duration was decreased in the intersections studied." It's clear.

Even then it was just some interesting questions he raised. Probably not known until he goes through the Paywall. Not very likely that a consensus can be reached, because what are the metrics? Some might say increased safety is laees accidents, some may say loss of life, some may say insurance company payouts. Some may just want the ticket money.

http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetw...

If you use less accidents as a metric, it is very difficult to defend the cameras. If less T-Bone accidents, you can. Money? Oh frabjous day, this is a friggin cash cow!

http://www.washingtonpost.com/...

And safety? Hey, Washington will give you a redlight ticket if you don't come to a full and complete stop and turn right.

What is more, remember that the companies have a say, they love that money too. So some contracts specifiy the shortest yellow duration to maximize the number of people fined.

http://www.npr.org/2012/02/22/...

http://www.npr.org/templates/s...

There's plenty more.

Now as ShanghaiBill noted, the real increases in Safety come from longer yellow light times. Very short times tend to cause more in the intersection accidents, and coupled with cameras, are more likely to produce rear end accidents, especially with the very short yellow light timing - and some say the photos are taken while the light is still yellow. I know myself, if we had redlight cameras in my area and short times. If I see the yellow light, I'm standing on the brakes. Yeah, I might get rear ended, but it will be the other drivers fault. I might know I am going to get hit, but I'll avoid a big fine. What a stupid, stupid system, that in essence causes people to purposely cause traffic accidents. That's just insane.

In principle, I hae no issue with redlight cams. In real life however, politicians are too anxious to get any non-tax revenue they can, and the companies that install and run these things are the kinfolk of the for profit prison people, so the demands for increased profits every quarter will have a similar effect. More tickets will need to be issued, and company pressure placed on the local Government to increase fines in order to increase profit. So there will be tinkering, I suspect in the end to just randomly take photos,of cars in intersections because most people will just cough up the thousand dollars or so it will cost by that time rather than hire a lawyer. Sweet gig if you can get it.

Since the human factor is inevitably and fatally flawed, the cameras need to be banned outright.

Comment: Re:Study financed by (Score 2) 236

by Ol Olsoc (#48644923) Attached to: Study: Red Light Cameras Don't Improve Safety

It isn't really that obvious. There was an overall 5% increase in injury accidents at the intersections with cameras. But they did not mention the severity of the injuries. T-bone crashes (which were reduced) are likely to result in more severe injuries than rear-end collisions (which were increased).

A few months back, NPR had an article about this matter, I think from the same study. It was fascinating listening to an insurance company rep expressing satisfaction that although there were more accidents, they were "safer" accidents.

And while yes, it is really nice that T-Bone accidents were reduced, I persoonally find it difficult to think how wonderful it is to be rear ended, end be pleased that some insurance company thought it was preferable. I don't consider an increase in accidents acceptable. It's like the only thing they count is th ebodies, not people who are suddenly High risk, and get dropped from insurance.

Another issue is the yellow light duration. Longer yellows leads to fewer accidents, and some cities installing cameras also shorten the yellow light duration to increase revenue.

This is probably a very big influence. If I'm going to get hundreds of dollars in fines and the Police have shortened the yellow light timing in order to make a revenue quota, as soon as I see a yellow light, I'm lockin' them up.

The study shows that cameras can increase accidents, but it doesn't show they always increase accidents. If they are used more intelligently, they could be a net benefit.

You are right. But the big problem is that the intelligent use will go by the wayside as soon as politicians are convinced they can raise revenue without a tax hike. Shave a few seconds off the yellow light, and add a few million to the coffers, might be irresistible to some.

But really, I'm not accepting of any traffic control system that accepts increasing accidents. People are often killed in T-Bones, but they are also killed in rear ending accidents resulting in fiery death. I could see some liability there.

Comment: Re:No, They Haven't Called Me (Score 1) 233

Why does it have to be one extreme or the other?

Can't I have a phone in case someone wants go get through, and then not give a crap if I don't have it on me?

Not one extreme or the other is the preferable mode of operation. At home, I see the number calling, and if it isan 800 service number or if it is unidentified, it doesn't get answered, and any number I pick up that doesn't have a voice within a second gets blocked - those are robocalls.

On my smartphone, only a few people have that number anyhow, and I'm not a phone/text/check my facebook addict, so that's no issue.

I agree with the GP. What's the point of having a phone or even giving out a phone number if you don't want to be contactable? But what's the point of going into a panic without it?

I really don't know why anyone would go into a panic. Perhaps it's a weird spinoff of th eself esteem movement, thinking they are very important, more likely the odd but prevalent mild OCD of thinking if they just have that one time they don't have the phone on them, something bad is going to happen. It's sort of like people ewho think their favorite sports team lost a game because they weren't wearing their "lucky team jersey

My girlfriend does something equally silly. She flat out doesn't answer private numbers. So one day I was stuck in the bush, zero phone reception, and I found at some lion club camp a Telstra phone so I attempted a reverse charge call. She never picked up. Fortunately at the time she was looking for jobs and had a disposable SIM which had a number only given to perspective employers so she always answered that one. Luckily I knew that number and got through.

There are all manner of problems that could cause a legitimate call to come through blocked or on a different number.

Certainly. At home we answer mysterious but legit seeming calls, or if someone has the courtesy to have their name on caller ID. Otherwise it goes to message. If it is important or real, they'll leave a message. Robocallers seldom do, although we have recieved threatening messages that AT&T is going to cancel our phone service. Pity we don't use AT&T.

Every successful person has had failures but repeated failure is no guarantee of eventual success.

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