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Comment Re:Microsft loves GPL Lawsuits (Score 1) 316 316

I wouldn't say that this is any proof that GPL shouldn't be used. Yes, in long running bigger projects, who holds the code copyright can of course become an issue, but this also means that contributions to the code muse be respected. This is actually more acout copyright than license. There would be the same problems in a hypothetical multi-developer closed source code. It would just be harder to verify if the source and the contributions aren't available. It's just that closed source code is usually run by companies, which own the copyright of the code their coders produce.

Comment Re:How so "stolen"? (Score 1) 502 502

And that's where the "better" analogy fails. If you were to take my cellphone away because I was drunk, I'd be grateful when sober even though you had technically stolen from me. If you were to take it away because I was stupid, that's theft, because you are in no position to make the decision for me.

Comment Re:like trying to offer proof to a Birther (Score 1) 1093 1093

There has not been recent global cooling in any meaningful way. Take a look at this graph of global temperature since 1880 and tell me that the past decade looks any different than any other similar period. Despite being the coldest year of the decade 2008 was still warmer than any year before 1998 and 2009 will be a warmer year than 2008 unless the next 15 days are -200 or so. The 2000s are still going to be the warmest decade on record.

Climate models didn't fail to predict "this" because they don't even attempt to predict it. Climate models don't try to account for natural variability because they can't. You can't predict the timing of an El Nino or the lower than normal solar minimum we're currently experiencing or any number of other natural factors that affect the short term weather but average out over longer periods of time. That's why (at least some) climate models project a 30 year average trend line. That's long enough to smooth out the effects of short term variations like we're currently experiencing. That's the difference between climate and weather.

Comment Re:like trying to offer proof to a Birther (Score 1) 1093 1093

Did you even bother to read the story? I picked it because it was the first reprint of the AP article I found on Google.

What the article basically says is that it's not statistically valid to say there has been global cooling lately. If you look at the temperature record of the last 130 years there are several periods where global temperatures dropped for 5-10 years. It doesn't change the long term upward trend. So when you say "recent global cooling" you're propagating misinformation (that's fancy talk for telling a lie).

Comment Re:Of course being in China, (Score 1) 315 315

"Capable of getting around your restrictions" is not the same thing as "free". Even if you are capable of doing it, they resist.

I like to say that there is only one guaranteed freedom -- the freedom to try. You can freely try to murder people, but you may well be caught, jailed, possibly executed. You can freely try to get around those restriction. You can also freely try to stop someone else's attempt to do whatever it is they're trying to do.

Comment This is the best idea they've come up with yet... (Score 4, Insightful) 154 154

...to distribute rootkits and create botnets. Even better than those "Free Antivirus Software" downloads.

Seriously, is anybody going to trust something like this without the source? Somebody intelligent enough not to open unsolicited email attachments, at any rate.

(And yes, I realize there might be "legitimate" reasons for keeping the source out of law enforcement's hands, but frankly [at risk of trolling] I would rather be spied on by the government than identity thieves.)

Space

Submission + - Total Lunar Eclipse This Weekend

SeaDour writes: This Saturday night, March 3rd, a total lunar eclipse will be visible from nearly all inhabited parts of the world. A great shadow will stretch across the surface of the moon, eventually casting it in an eerie red glow as sunlight filters through our atmosphere onto the lunar surface. Viewers in Europe and Africa will have the best vantage point, able to watch the entire eclipse in action, while observers in most of the western hemisphere can see it eclipsed as it rises just after sunset.
Communications

Submission + - Cell phone service in a bomb shelter

hedgemage writes: I work at a retirement home and we have trouble with the cell phones that our nursing and maintenance staff use. The problem is that our nursing home area is built into a lower level that was originally constructed as a fallout shelter in 1960. There's a lot of solid concrete in the walls and ceiling. We have paid out tens of thousands to try and get an on-site mobile to work using NEC Dterm PSII phones, but they have proven absolutely unreliable (not just in the bomb shelter but throughout the campus) and the only solution our telecom provider has is to install several thousand dollars more in transcievers. If we could use ordinary cell phones, it would be ideal for everyone. Is there an off-the-shelf solution that could boost regular cellular signals in our bomb shelter?
Businesses

Submission + - Best Buy Confirms 'secret' Website

Iberian writes: Courant.com confirms Best Buy does indeed maintain a second website for what one could only assume is for fraudulent purposes.

State Attorney General Richard Blumenthal ordered the investigation into Best Buy's practices on Feb. 9 after my column disclosed the website and showed how employees at two Connecticut stores used it to deny customers a $150 discount on a computer advertised on BestBuy.com.
Programming

Submission + - An Introduction to NVIDIA's CUDA for GPGPU

An anonymous reader writes: NVIDIA has released their new GPGPU architecture programming tools to a public beta. "CUDA" (Compute Unified Device Architecture) aims to harness the considerable parallel compute power of the modern GPU in the service of applications beyond games. Beyond3D has a go at explaining what CUDA is, how it works, and its likely future.

Comment Web site of the winning team (Score 1) 625 625

I was curious how the winning team won, so I went to their web site: http://www.mech.ubc.ca/~supermileage/.

From their FAQ:

Q: What changes did you make to the 2006 vehicle to yield such large increases to your mileage this year?

A: We keep our vehicle as spartan as possible, with only the bare essentials to keep the vehicle lightweight. Aerodynamics, rolling resistance, driving technique and engine performance are always being revisited and continuously improved.

This year's most significant advances were most likely made in the execution of the design that we had intended for last year's vehicle. Everything in the vehicle was tuned and design with fuel efficiency in mind.

Not much there. Digging some more, their tech specs say their engine displaced 54 cc. However, the original engine displaced 148 cc. (See the engine manual.) Obviously, they made some modifications.

The reward of a thing well done is to have done it. -- Emerson

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