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Comment: Re:Medium.com Alert! (Score 1) 199

by dmatos (#49790863) Attached to: Ways To Travel Faster Than Light Without Violating Relativity

With a bit of creative interpretation, it does. For example, you could mimic the beta-decay electrons in nuclear piles:

1. Start out traveling at almost c.
2. Slam into a medium with a refractive index > 1.

For a brief period of time, while your body is being vaporized by the impact, and before Cherenkov radiation robs you of your kinetic energy, you will be traveling faster than light.

Comment: Re:Taxes? (Score 2) 224

Downloading of copyrighted music files is legal in this country, because we pay a tariff on blank media.

However, the tariff only goes to pay for music. Downloading of any other form of copyrighted material is not covered by the tariff. This includes television shows, movies, video games, ebooks, and even audio books.

So you're partially correct, yes. But not totally, and not applicably to what people think of when they talk about downloading these days.

Comment: Re:Foundation Repair (injection) (Score 1) 94

by dmatos (#49699391) Attached to: Biologists Create Self-Healing Concrete

You're kidding, right? They fix cracks in concrete now by injecting hydraulic cement. Exactly the same delivery process, except the crack is then sealed as soon as the cement dries, and it uses an existing, inexpensive substance.

I don't think anyone is complaining that injected hydraulic cement is not strong enough, or doesn't fill all of the gaps.

Comment: Text of the Bylaw (Score 1) 152

by dmatos (#49638395) Attached to: Canadian Town Outlaws Online Insults To Police and Officials

Here's the actual text of the bylaw:

Il est interdit à toute personne de provoquer, dâ(TM)insulter, dâ(TM)injurier, de blasphémer ou de molester un agent de la paix ou un officier municipal dans lâ(TM)exercice de leurs fonctions.
Constitue une infraction au présent article des propos tenus sur Internet ou sur lesréseaux sociaux.
(rÃg 0556-2015, art.2)

And my attempt at a translation:

It is prohibited for any person to provoke, insult, injure, blaspheme, or molest an agent of peace [officer of the law] or a municipal officer during the exercise of their duties.

It is an infraction under this section for remarks to be made on the Internet or on social networks.

So, the municipality of Granby has made it illegal to say "God damn it, mayor" on Facebook. Honestly, even discounting the online portion of this bylaw, I think it's unreasonable. And I suspect many of you agree. But remember, Quebec (and especially some of the smaller towns in Quebec) are much more devoutly Catholic, with over 70% of the province identifying as RC.

Comment: Re:Why (Score 1) 529

by dmatos (#48206721) Attached to: Shooting At Canadian Parliament

Terrorism: n

the use of violence and intimidation, intended to cause fear, in the pursuit of political aims. Note the lack of any definition of targets.

Not terrorism: n

Just about every fucking thing that's reported as such by the US media.

The word is misused as much as "literally" these days. So much so that I can't even.

Comment: Re:blackberries in seattle? I'm Shocked. Shocked (Score 1) 290

by dmatos (#47092199) Attached to: Should We Eat Invasive Species?

Probably not. The native habitat for lionfish is the Indo-Pacific oceans. They are not threatened in those locations. They are invasive in the Caribbean especially.

In the Caribbean, they have no natural predators. Additionally, they are voracious eaters, and scarf up hundreds of immature reef fish each day. The quantity of native reef fish has dropped precipitously in the Caribbean due to invasive lionfish. Being able to _actually_ eliminate them from the Caribbean would be a fantastic coup, and allow the reefs to regenerate back to something of their former glory.

As a side note, though, how many people actually pay attention to what the extremists in Greenpeace tell them to do? Have you stopped driving your car? Eating beef? Shut down your nuclear power plants?

Comment: I use the internets! (Score 1) 983

by dmatos (#46463301) Attached to: How Do You Backup 20TB of Data?

20TB of music and movies? How many of those could be downloaded again tomorrow? My guess is "most." The only thing that's really "mine" on my computers, and not backed up, is my own pictures. I upload those to image sharing sites on the internet. Most docs are done on Google Docs for portability reasons, and other things I've created are already on Dropbox.

I experienced a catastrophic hard drive failure a year or so ago. After replacing the hard drive, and about one day of downloading and installing the programs I needed, I was up and running again. It took 24 hours to download enough of the series that I was watching to pick up where I left off again. And if I ever get a hankering for watching something I've seen before, well, I can get it from the internet again in a matter of hours or days.

Comment: Re:Updates always come at the wrong moment (Score 1) 305

by dmatos (#46306593) Attached to: Why Your Phone Gets OTA Updates But Your Car Doesn't

"Your car requires a mandatory update. This update will take 1h 16m, and must be installed within 7 days. Please click "OK" to install this update now. Click "DELAY" to defer the update to a later time. Note that after 7 days, the update will install automatically, with no further opportunities for you to delay it."

Comment: Can something be "scientific" even if it's wrong? (Score 1) 625

by dmatos (#46229971) Attached to: Majority of Young American Adults Think Astrology Is a Science

Would you guys contest that "light is transmitted by fluctuations in the ether" is a scientific theory? It was believed by many scientists, and for a long time. The answer to the question posed in the survey depends not just on the definition of "astrology," but also on the definition of "scientific."

One of the things that I keep parroting to the creationist crowd is that a scientific theory must explain past events, and predict future events in a way that is testable. Nothing in here says that it has to be true. In fact, many theories that we now use are expressly not true at certain limits. Nope - explanation of past events, and prediction of future events in a testable manner. Those are the qualifications.

So let's apply this to astrology. Does it explain past events? Well, it certainly tries to. Does it predict future events? Check. Does it predict future events in a manner that is testable and falsifiable? I think that a controlled experiment would certainly do so. The controlled experiment would fail, and that would prove the theory of astrology false, but that doesn't make it "not a scientific theory."

Given that logic, I'd have to answer "sort of scientific" to this question. But if I were asked "do you believe that the position of stars and planets govern our day to day lives," that would get a resounding "no."

Good day to avoid cops. Crawl to work.