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Comment: jargon (Score 1) 88

What the hell is a "threat actor"?

Why use jargon when "criminal" is a perfectly good word? And if this is a specific type of criminal, say a terrorist or a thief or the intelligence apparatus of a foreign country, then there are very descriptive and precise words for those as well. If it's corporate espionage, then "crook" works well, too.

Why do people who use technology feel the need to create neologisms for the most mundane things? Just the other day, I saw someone from a news web site refer to an "article" as an "explainer cardstack". I'm not shitting you. I immediately took that news source out of my RSS feed because if they're that dedicated to lexical obfuscation, I don't trust anything they write.

English motherfucker. Do you speak it?

Comment: Re:Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (Score 3, Interesting) 231

by PopeRatzo (#47439493) Attached to: A Skeptical View of Israel's Iron Dome Rocket Defense System

No, in recent history, these conflicts are resolved by pressure from the international community. It's how apartheid in South Africa ended, to a great extent.

I don't know if you're old enough to remember Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher referring to Nelson Mandela as a "terrorist" and his party as a "terrorist organization". It turned out they were dead wrong. Last year, the philosophical progeny of Reagan and Thatcher hailed Mandela as a hero.

History is not going to be kind to the government of Israel in the first decades of the 21st century (if not longer).

It didn't have to be this way.

Comment: Re:Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (Score 1) 231

by PopeRatzo (#47439463) Attached to: A Skeptical View of Israel's Iron Dome Rocket Defense System

Did you read that Wikipedia article you linked to? It makes a pretty good case that it's apartheid:

The analogy has been used by scholars, United Nations investigators, human rights groups and critics of Israeli policy, some of which have also accused Israel of committing the crime of apartheid.[2][3] Critics of Israeli policy say that "a system of control" in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, including Jewish-only settlements, the ID system, separate roads for Israeli and Palestinian citizens, military checkpoints, discriminatory marriage law, the West Bank barrier, use of Palestinians as cheap labour, Palestinian West Bank enclaves, inequities in infrastructure, legal rights, and access to land and resources between Palestinians and Israeli residents in the Israeli-occupied territories resembles some aspects of the South African apartheid regime, and that elements of Israel's occupation constitute forms of colonialism and of apartheid, which are contrary to international law.[4] Some commentators extend the analogy, or accusation, to include Arab citizens of Israel, describing their citizenship status as second-class.[12]

You know the old expression about "looking like a duck and walking like a duck and sounding like a duck"? Well, Israel has been quacking for quite some time now when it comes to it's treatment of Palestinians.

Comment: Re:I've been calling for this for 20+ years... (Score 1) 132

by MillionthMonkey (#47439433) Attached to: Biohackers Are Engineering Yeast To Make THC

If we ever learn to design new genes and proteins quickly, there are a bunch of starter projects:

Give mold the ability to synthesize CBD and THC. It would motivate you to wash your dishes- so you can use a razor blade to scrape off a gooey film of cannabinoids from the slimy ceramic in your sink, puff away, develop the munchies again, refill the sink with dirty dishes, and complete the cycle.

Insert a couple genes into E Coli that can synthesize cannabinoids in your intestines, so you can get a buzz after eating regular brownies.

Give cows a few genes for synthesis of cannabinoids during lactation. THC milk would also go great with regular brownies.

Design a virus that invades the human nervous system and inserts genes into white matter cells to induce synthesis of Adderall.

Engineer mosquitos that have the ability to synthesize heroin.

Make puncturevines that synthesize injectable human vaccines for measles, mumps, pertussis, polio, flu, rubella. and accumulate them in those tack-shaped goathead seeds. Plant them near people who think vaccines cause autism. Also include genes for synthesizing tire sealant, so their needles stop blowing out my bike tires when they reach the curb.

Give chili peppers the ability to synthesize and retain methamphetamine. Pulverize them and you can get meth with that "Chili P signature" like Jesse was selling in the first episode of Breaking Bad.

Create bees that can successfully avoid any areas tainted with anything manufactured by Bayer.

Resurrect DNA from extinct giant bird Palagornis sandersi but modify the legs a little so that the birds can hold bombs and chemical weapons.

Design trees that grow both apples and oranges, so we can finally compare them.

Comment: Printed THC (Score 1) 132

by MillionthMonkey (#47438371) Attached to: Biohackers Are Engineering Yeast To Make THC

They are genetically engineering stuff to produce stuff that is already available? Benefit would be....?

I'm not going to bother with genetic engineering. I'm going to get a 3D printer, download THC.sdl and CBD.sdl, and print my own cannabinoids.

Which reminds me I also have to print a new bong because this one is starting to smell like yeast.

Comment: Re:That said... (Score 3, Interesting) 57

by swillden (#47437985) Attached to: Sand-Based Anode Triples Lithium-Ion Battery Performance

Some EVs also let you limit the max that your pack charges up to to further extend lifespan (it's usually destructive both to use the very top end and the bottom end of the discharge range).

That is the theory, but real-world experience with the world's most successful EV (Nissan LEAF) isn't bearing it out. There doesn't appear to be any significant benefit to limiting charging to the 80% level. What is proving to matter, a lot, is temperature. The risks of very cold temperatures are so extreme that the cars have built-in battery heaters (powered by the batteries, obviously) to protect against them, so in practice cold just reduces range, but hot temperatures seriously impact battery longevity.

Another theoretically-predicted battery-killer that is not showing real-world degradation is quick charging. I believe Nissan has even stopped telling people they should limit the amount of level 3 charging they do.

Excellent points about larger capacity batteries needing to survive fewer cycles, though.

Comment: Re:Manager (Score 3, Insightful) 183

by swillden (#47437931) Attached to: New Microsoft CEO Vows To Shake Up Corporate Culture

Their goal has unswervingly been lock-in from top to bottom, while trying to nickel and dime you the whole way.

This is exactly the corporate culture shake-up that's required.

Microsoft has a lot of really smart people, and the financial and other assets needed to put them to work doing great things that can compete and win on their own, actually serving customers rather than trying to lock them in and then exploit them.

MS could be great. But they need a radically different internal dynamic to get there. Will this guy be able to do that? I'm skeptical, but I really hope he can.

Time is nature's way of making sure that everything doesn't happen at once. Space is nature's way of making sure that everything doesn't happen to you.

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