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Comment Re:A simple test is in order (Score 2) 432

Exact same story here. We installed a wifi repeater in the lobby at work. The hostess started complaining about the 'microwaves hurting her'. But it wasn't even turned on yet (we were still building the rest of the system), only the LED on its power. When we finally turned it on we put a piece of black tape over the LED and told her that we'd turned it off. Everything was fine after that. Some people deserve to be slapped.

Comment Re:The cars can detect gestures. (Score 1) 235

Here's one case: there's been a small mudslide on the road and more is expected. Police / road workers are closing the road in a hurry. Central authority / maps have not been updated. You car MUST stop. But I guess it's enough to put a barrier in the middle of the road to get any car to stop, automated or not.

Comment Yeah, right. (Score 4, Interesting) 168

In the words of Knuth the Great: "Beware of bugs in the above code; I have only proved it correct, not tried it."

It reminds me of a story from the late 80s (?) at a tech conference. The makers of a real-time OS with real-time snapshots would periodically pull the plug on their systems, plug it back in and it would resume exactly what it was doing, to the delight and amazement of all the techies in the assistance. In the much larger and much more expensive booth in front of them was a richer vendor. The techies started coaxing them to do the same. After much hand wringing, they did, and after a very long rebuild time the system came back as a mess. Conclusion: the 1st vendor went out of business, the 2nd one is still very big.

Data Storage

MIT's New File System Won't Lose Data During Crashes 168

jan_jes sends news that MIT researchers will soon present a file system they say is mathematically guaranteed not to lose data during a crash. While building it, they wrote and rewrote the file system over and over, finding that the majority of their development time was spent defining the system components and the relationships between them. "With all these logics and proofs, there are so many ways to write them down, and each one of them has subtle implications down the line that we didn’t really understand." The file system is slow compared to other modern examples, but the researchers say their formal verification can also work with faster designs. Associate professor Nickolai Zeldovich said, "Making sure that the file system can recover from a crash at any point is tricky because there are so many different places that you could crash. You literally have to consider every instruction or every disk operation and think, ‘Well, what if I crash now? What now? What now?’ And so empirically, people have found lots of bugs in file systems that have to do with crash recovery, and they keep finding them, even in very well tested file systems, because it’s just so hard to do.”

Comment This allows of big modifications (Score 4, Interesting) 110

One of the properties of junk DNA is that it can endure brutal mutations since it's not used for anything. So over time it can change a LOT. Then suddenly another mutation suddenly activates it by mistake and *poof* you have a new magic super-power (more often than not, lethal). Starting from a crucial gene won't work since the slightest modification will reduce your survival rate, since by definition it's crucial.

Research is to see what everybody else has seen, and think what nobody else has thought.