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Comment Re: Obvious deflection. (Score 2) 240

His claim was that those are not weddings, but instead are other gatherings reported to be weddings after the fact for propaganda value. He also claims that higher numbers of casualties are reported, again, for propaganda value.

He does not once claim it is OK to ever bomb a Pakistani wedding.

Comment Re:What they really said (Score 4, Informative) 93

And the dollar won't be the world reserve currency forever.

I think you can look at anything and say that it will not be the case forever and be guaranteed to be right. However, the USD, despite its issues, is looking strong for the next few decades because the other currencies have even bigger issues than the greenback.

The Euro's speculative value is based heavily on the strength of the union, rather than the strength of the large economies backing it. No matter how strong and stable Germany and France may be, they can never wholly support the Euro's worth. Even with a strong Italy and Spain, the Euro would still be prone to shocks and fears. The Euro is held as a reserve currency, but not with the same gusto as it was 5 years ago.

Chinese Yuan RMB, is first and foremost, a controlled currency. Currency exchanges in China are limited by law and complicated to perform, leading it to have a lower volume of trade and thus lower fluidity on the foreign market than Australian/Canadian Dollars, Swiss Franks and Mexican Pesos. Beyond that, it exists to serve Chinese monetary policy, rather than American monetary policy largely existing to serve the Dollar, leading to a lot of exposure to holders of large amounts of it.

The Japanese Yen is used as a reserve currency because of its low inflation. But because of its low inflation, Japan is not growing, despite the 0.1% interest rate they have had for almost a decade now, which makes it unlikely to eclipse anyone anytime soon.

Australian dollars, Swiss Franks and Canadian Dollars, each are underpinned by economies too small and too focused on particular sectors. The only reason AUD and CHF are traded so much is that they move rapidly in a predicable direction due to certain economic conditions. It makes them suitable for a hedge in currency baskets, but not to hold the bulk of value. Besides, its not certain that there is enough of these currencies in circulation to make holding the world's reserves in it practical. Possibly Australia and Canada are just large enough to endure foreign banks either hording their currencies or creating money on paper by lending the another currency against debts in their own, but Switzerland with its half trillion GDP would surely consider this as an act of sabotage.

So what does that leave beyond USD? Pound Stirling, which is in fact a commonly held reserve currency. But the UK does not have the natural resources or the population for rapid growth, so I doubt it will overtake the US.

So what is left? Brazil, Russia and India? Well, the Ruble is a basket case, the Real has 8.5% inflation and the Rupee is in deflation at the moment, leading to concerns about money supply.

I think the USD could get a lot worse before people start thinking about getting rid of it.

Comment Re:BBC / other state broadcasters? (Score 1) 132

I am in China and I would pay for a BBC subscription at the current UK license price, if such a thing was available. Problem is, BBC licenses content on a national basis and also makes a fortune selling national broadcast rights to its programs, so its pretty unlikely to ever happen.

Comment Re: This isn't the first cable to be cut. (Score 1) 102

Why the hell would China deliberately sabotage a foreign cable in order to knock 50,000 islanders off the 'net? That's like opening yourself up for actual diplomatic reprisals for 0 gain.

Now if you claimed they broke it by accident dredging for sand to build their their little island thing, maybe.

Comment Re: Well, she was an interim. (Score 2) 467

"He who takes offense when no offense is intended is a fool, and he who takes offense when offense is intended is a greater fool." Brigham Young

"It's easy to maintain a healthy self esteem if you have an enormous haram and run your own religion." -Me

Comment Re: A long time coming... (Score 1) 364

There is a buffet in most larger Chinese cities called "Golden Jaguar", frequented mostly by the aspirational middle class. It costs upwards of 60 USD to go there, even though most of its food tastes like rubbish. The most popular thing there is the Giant Crab, sometimes it is good, but since the guests expect to see it every time, mostly they just use any giant crab they can find, which tastes worse than those horrible crab sticks you can get... practically flavourless.

So, why eat the giant crab when it usually tastes like cornflower and has the texture of dental floss and you have to smash through a thick carapace to get at it?

Because no matter how shit a giant crab tastes, it will always be expensive. No matter how much shrimp meal you stuff into a crab shell, it will never pass off as crab. Because they spent 400 Yuan per head on a buffet and they better get the real thing!

And so it is with steel. They don't care about whether American or Chinese steel is better, they just think they are paying through the arse for your parts, they better be getting the expensive stuff.

Comment Re:it could... (Score 3, Informative) 148

The weight of the fridge, transferred via the rope and pully, will rip the gears clear off the end of the shaft and tear this 3D printed device apart.

I think the point of the grandparent is that the torque caused by a fridge dangling from a rope is far from extreme, a 100kg fridge on a rope wound on a 0.5m diameter capstan would exert 245Nm of torque onto the axle, less than the engine from a standard family car does before reduction gearing.

While that little hand held plastic toy might not handle the stress, if you were to scale it up or 3d print it out of metal (as some newer 3d printers can do) it would handle it easily.

The point of the 9v winching example is not that a fridge exerts a lot of torque onto the capstan, it is that a battery driven electric motor exerts so little.

Comment Re:Citizen of Belgium here (Score 1) 1307

I thought I hear enough of that crap in Asia. Talk about Japanese art: WWII, talk about Japanese cartoons: WWII, talk about Japanese video games: WWII, talk about modern day Japanese politics: WWII.

It's boring, it's irrelevant and it's ultimately harmful to national consciousness.

The memory of Versailles brought Hitler to power. Memories of past shames like at Gazimestan caused the bloody breakup of Yugoslavia. Memories of Canae caused the Third Punic War, etc.

If history has taught us anything, it is that history should only give wisdom to avoid making the mistakes of the past, not to allocate blame for the present.

Comment Re:That's nuthin (Score 1) 81

100% humidity is where the partial pressure of water vapor in the air is too high for any more water to be suspended in the air. This is when water does not evaporate so sweating ceases to make you any cooler. It does not mean that there is more water around you than air. Water in a liquid state does not count as humidity anyway.

Comment Re:Boo hoo... (Score 2) 818

Abraham Lincoln won the 1860 presidential election, His name was not even on the ballot in 10 states. There were only 33 states at the time so close to 1/3 of the states did not have him on the ballot and he still won. That was the key that started the whole civil war!

And did he get the required electoral collage votes to become president or not? Were the voters deprived the right to vote for Breckinridge, Bell or Douglas through Lincoln being left off the ballot?

Lincoln won fair. The Democrats killed their hope of election themselves by some of their key figures in the south carrying on in an seditious way that could not be endured by much of their voter base, splitting their vote 3 ways. The Republicans had a clear platform of a strong central government and less slavery. Those who voted them in knew what they were voting for and got it./p

Comment Re:FOI Request ... (Score 1) 136

I remember Sydney Morning Herald (not a semi-pornographic supermarket tabloid) published nude full body shots of her on the second page the day after she married Nicolas. Candid pics are nothing compared to what can be achieved with professional lighting and photography.

Comment Re:What are... (Score 4, Insightful) 273

Units are complicated and many people overstate the benefits of having uniform worldwide units. If I'm choosing a unit for how I sell my goods, what's more important, that the person down the street is familiar with the unit, or somebody from Ghana will be familiar if he travels to my store.

In industry, whatever tool or system you're dealing with, you're going to either use something that is either imported or exported or has to be compatible with something that is imported or exported. Thus you are guaranteed that there will be SI units somewhere in your process and it is usually just easier to go with it for the whole process, as is done in the military, NASA, and most US engineering firms. In addition to being internationally compatible, it is also a damn lot easier to use. Sure, if you use no unit but feet, pounds and seconds in your calculation there is no unit conversion that needs to be done, but as soon as you go into the range where you might think in miles or ounces, it becomes fairly difficult to reconcile intuition with units unless you do some fiddly calculations. Whereas a native SI user knows intuitively how long a Km and mm is in the same way an American might recon a mile or an inch.

So you may say: "why don't I buy a 2 pounds of apples, then walk a mile to work where I use SI to design parts and trajectories and what not?" Problem is, if you're thinking in non SI, then non SI units tend to sneak into where they don't belong. The Mars Climate Orbiter for example fell out of the sky because Lockheed used pound-seconds instead of newton-seconds in a calculation.

Considering how much success other countries have had switching, I'm always surprised at America's feeble efforts to do so. I think it is just something to do with Americans natural paranoia about as you say a "New World Order" or whatever else that prevents it.

Comment Re: It's an advertisement for their PVS Studio pro (Score 2) 72

It does make a good case for their product. I look at most of that stuff and think "I have done that" and think how much time has been wasted diagnosing such bugs.

However, what concerns me is the potential noise that is not in the article. I am pretty sure there are a few things that it reports that are actually OK and these things weren't included. Though I admit that I don't know for certain this is the case.

Comment Re: Problems causing Video effects? (Score 3, Interesting) 72

You don't know what you are talking about. Drivers never quite follow the DirectX, OpenGL spec and always have some idiosyncrasies on this card or that to make them generate correct-ish results faster by cutting corners. I find my card getting completely different results to the reference implementation on a monthly basis (sometimes even missing draw calls completely or rendering with the wrong state). I found this particularly true when using DX9 style render states on DX11 class hardware. Neither AMD nor Nvidia will change a driver for you unless you can prove to them that the application is using the spec correctly and the observed results are demonstrably wrong. If you are an independent developer it's even worse since they don't make it easy to contact them.

"Once they go up, who cares where they come down? That's not my department." -- Werner von Braun