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Comment: This is hardly a new issue (Score 3) 283 283

Automated devices can always be dangerous. This is the case with any mechanised factory.

The company has a duty to produce and enforce health and safety rules. The employee has the duty to follow these rules and apply basic common sense. If both of these conditions are met, accidents will still happen, but nobody is really to blame. That's why they're called accidents. We can't predict everything.
NASA

NASA To Waste $150 Million On SLS Engine That Will Be Used Once 136 136

schwit1 writes: NASA's safety panel has noticed that NASA's SLS program either plans to spend $150 million human-rating a rocket engine it will only use once, or will fly a manned mission without human-rating that engine.

"The Block 1 SLS is the 'basic model,' sporting a Delta Cryogenic Second Stage (DCSS), renamed the Interim Cryogenic Propulsion System (ICPS) for SLS. The current plan calls for this [interim] stage to be used on [the unmanned] Exploration Mission -1 (EM-1) and [manned] Exploration Mission -2 (EM-2), prior to moving to the [Exploration Upper Stage] — also to be built by Boeing — that will become the workhorse for SLS. However, using the [interim upper stage] on a crewed mission will require it to be human rated. It is likely NASA will also need to fly the [Exploration Upper Stage] on an unmanned mission to validate the new stage ahead of human missions. This has been presenting NASA with a headache for some time, although it took the recent ASAP meeting to finally confirm those concerns to the public."

NASA doesn't have the funds to human-rate it, and even if they get those funds, human-rating it will likely cause SLS's schedule to slip even more, something NASA fears because they expect the commercial manned ships to be flying sooner and with increasing capability. The contrast — a delayed and unflown and very expensive SLS vs a flying and inexpensive commercial effort — will not do SLS good politically. However, if they are going to insist (properly I think) that SpaceX and Boeing human-rate their capsules and rockets, then NASA is going to have to hold the SLS to the same standard.

Comment: Re:Copyright and cryonics (Score 1) 111 111

Thank you so much for that interesting piece of information! It's a shame that question doesn't seem to have gotten rated highly enough for Steve to see it, but I'm fascinated by what you've shared and seeing that there's a connection between the raids on Alcor and SJGames and thus, ultimately, the EFF.
The Military

Test Pilot: the F-35 Can't Dogfight 797 797

schwit1 sends this report from the War Is Boring column: A test pilot has some very, very bad news about the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. The pricey new stealth jet can't turn or climb fast enough to hit an enemy plane during a dogfight or to dodge the enemy's own gunfire, the pilot reported following a day of mock air battles back in January. And to add insult to injury, the JSF flier discovered he couldn't even comfortably move his head inside the radar-evading jet's cramped cockpit. "The helmet was too large for the space inside the canopy to adequately see behind the aircraft." That allowed the F-16 to sneak up on him. The test pilot's report is the latest evidence of fundamental problems with the design of the F-35 — which, at a total program cost of more than a trillion dollars, is history's most expensive weapon. Your tax dollars at work.

Comment: Re:If we're stuck with polls, how 'bout tech polls (Score 1) 138 138

I'm becoming a bit of a fireworks nerd, actually. I grew up in the big city where firework sales were forbidden, and now I live in the country where you can buy them twice a year. We actually double up on fourth of July and get extras to save for the fifth of November and have a fun time then, as well.

I've gone so far as to research how to create my own fireworks, and I might actually give it a try some day.

Gunpowder is really the original world-transforming technologies.

Comment: Copyright (Score 4, Interesting) 111 111

Steve, I read that you consider yourself a "small-l libertarian." These days a lot of libertarians have come to oppose copyright law, or else favor severe reforms for it. As a publisher, game designer, and libertarian, how do you feel about the subject, and do you feel that these various roles are in tension with each other?

On a related note, in junior high school I bought GURPS Cyberpunk from a friend, only to later find out that that friend had shoplifted it from a bookstore. I've always regretted that. Do I owe you guys some money?

Comment: Cryonics (Score 1) 111 111

Steve, thanks for many enjoyable hours spent gaming and reading your company's books about gaming. I wish I could ask you how to make more hours so that I could still play today!

I have read that at one time you had cryonics arrangements with Alcor Life Extension foundation. Is that still true today? Are you optimistic about your chances? Do you recommend other people follow suit?

Comment: Re:Wrong idea: too much skin colors. (Score 1) 171 171

Detecting nipples shouldn't be too hard. We could assign a probability based on relative location to the face, colour difference and size. Although a lot of "artistic" nude shots don't show that. The problem here is that they tend to hint at nakedness rather than explicitly show it.You can't detect everything that might be considered rude using a single algorithm.

Comment: I really hope its a bit smarter than that!` (Score 1) 171 171

A women in a bikini - acceptable for all but the most puritanical of people - will have a lot of skin. A woman flashing her top will have a lot less skin than that.

The algorithm seems to do some stuff with "curves" - whether this looks for breasts or just female body shape is something I'll have to play with when I'm not at work.

Comment: Re:Are We Too Quick To Act On Social Media Outrage (Score 1) 370 370

Err, why exactly would it be a bad idea to pay debts?

I wondered that, too, the first time I heard this. The answer is that it would be a bad idea to make debt payments if you are spending your rent or grocery money to do so. This is why we have things like bankruptcy laws.

Comment: Re:Are We Too Quick To Act On Social Media Outrage (Score 3, Interesting) 370 370

Outrage is almost always a sign that someone is trying to manipulate you (either for page views, or something else).

An angry outburst is temporary insanity. You are not rational while you are angry, and anything you are thinking of saying or doing is going to be irrational and stands a high degree of making your problem worse. If you will train yourself to relax as your default habit whenever something frustrates you, and adopt the rule that you won't say or do anything until you have calmed down, you will actually train the neurons in your brain to focus on rational problem solving instead of producing an angry outburst, and you will be able to come up with much better solutions to your problems.

A debt collector knows that if you are thinking rationally when they call, you will not pay them, so they seek to get you upset so you will do something irrational. Politicians exploit the exact same thing.

As a parent I know the most important thing I need to do in raising my children is to keep my head and stay calm and relaxed so that the solutions I come up with to parenting difficulties will be rational solutions, the best solutions possible so I can do a good job of raising my kids.

This works for nearly any problem in life.

Comment: Re:Time for incest NOW!! (Score 1) 1080 1080

Maybe, there can be some justification for legally recognizing groups of people raising children together (their own or adopted) â" but I am not sure about that either...

As a libertarian I would say that each group or individual should be able to grant whatever recognition to those groups that they please, or withhold it. The group/couple should be able to get together and do what they want and their neighbors can consider them "married" or not, or whatever.

You can do this in a number of ways. IBM chose to do all of them. Why do you find that funny? -- D. Taylor, Computer Science 350

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