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Comment: Re:Perspective (Score 1) 56

by Opportunist (#48640605) Attached to: NASA Video Shows What It's Like To Reenter the Earth's Atmosphere

Fuck money. You know when the US made its biggest leaps ahead? When money was pumped into NASA for the moon shot. The 60s where THE decade. World leader in anything technology, and not resting on its "we're #1, why try harder?" spot but gaining enough momentum that it lasted well into the 80s before anyone could come close in any field of technology. Jobs were plentiful and people had money, and they spent that money on more things, creating more jobs. And with the success in space came a really powerful "can do" spirit that drove the economy ahead again. The heroes were the astronauts, people who dared to brave the perils ahead of them in a quest to push the boundaries of humanity and to prove that anything is possible if you just put your mind to it and focus on the goal.

We need that again. I mean, look around you. It's getting hard to remember when the US was #1 in anything, even the Chinese economy is about to take over, if it hasn't already. Jobs are hard to come by and usually they are barely enough to get by, no money to spend, no way to create a job for a hairdresser or a plumber because you can't afford them. And with that drag comes a "no can do" spirit that quenches the last bit of will to compete and succeed. The current american dream isn't to work and climb the ladder, the dream is to buy a ticket and win the lottery.

Not to mention that the heroes of today are idiots in casting shows, people whose biggest dare is to face the verdict of Simon Cowell, with the focus of 5 minutes of fame.

Comment: Re:Supreme Leader (Score 1) 87

by Opportunist (#48640575) Attached to: Hackers Used Nasty "SMB Worm" Attack Toolkit Against Sony

If I bought one of their rootkit CDs and infected my system, I could see getting a bit miffed, especially after that idiotic statement of how ""Most people, I think, don't even know what a rootkit is, so why should they care about it?" and the "settlement" which essentially said Sony can do whatever they please and don't even get a slap on the wrist.

You see, when the law fails, vigilantes are not far.

Comment: Re:correct if wrong (Score 1) 87

by Opportunist (#48640573) Attached to: Hackers Used Nasty "SMB Worm" Attack Toolkit Against Sony

You would, and so would I and probably anyone who doesn't think TCP is the Chinese secret service.

But do you think Sony would pay either your or my "asking price"? For what I would command they could easily hire three "admins". They might consider TCP the Chinese secret service and have generally zero clue about security or anything related, but hey, they will just take twice times the time I need to get something going, and with a salary a third of mine, that's still coming out ahead!

That the reason they spend twice as long is that they use copy/paste configuring and try&error as a way to figure out how to get stuff going, leaving ports open and vulnerable behind them in their battle against the system, who cares? It works, doesn't it?

Comment: Then maybe we can finally answer an old question (Score 2) 87

by Opportunist (#48640549) Attached to: Hackers Used Nasty "SMB Worm" Attack Toolkit Against Sony

I think it was Thomas Hesse, back when Sony distributed Rootkits with their CDs their President of Global Digital Business, who said "Most people, I think, don't even know what a rootkit is, so why should they care about it?".

Well, Sony? I'm fairly convinced your execs don't have the foggiest clue about malware but ... do you care about it?

Comment: Re: Science, bitches, that's *how* it works! (Score 4, Informative) 173

by nine-times (#48635473) Attached to: Quantum Physics Just Got Less Complicated

Newtonian physics looks kind of logical. It's completely wrong...

No, it's not completely wrong. It's a model that approximates what happens within an acceptable degree of precision for many, many circumstances. We have another model that adds to it and modifies it, and that model is used for situations where that precision is not sufficient. It's not clear that science is capable of providing certainty of "right" or "wrong" beyond determining whether a model approximates what happens within an acceptable degree of precision.

+ - Scientists Discover That Exercise Changes Your DNA

Submitted by (3830033) writes "The human genome is astonishingly complex and dynamic, with genes constantly turning on or off, depending on what biochemical signals they receive from the body. Scientists have known that certain genes become active or quieter as a result of exercise but they hadn’t understood how those genes knew how to respond to exercise. Now the NYT reports that scientists at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm have completed a study where they recruited 23 young and healthy men and women, brought them to the lab for a series of physical performance and medical tests, including a muscle biopsy, and then asked them to exercise half of their lower bodies for three months. The volunteers pedaled one-legged at a moderate pace for 45 minutes, four times per week for three months. Then the scientists repeated the muscle biopsies and other tests with each volunteer. Not surprisingly, the volunteers’ exercised leg was more powerful now than the other, showing that the exercise had resulted in physical improvements. But there were also changes within the exercised muscle cells’ DNA. Using technology that analyses 480,000 positions throughout the genome, they could see that new methylation patterns had taken place in 7,000 genes (an individual has 20–25,000 genes).

In a process known as DNA methylation, clusters of atoms, called methyl groups, attach to the outside of a gene like microscopic mollusks and make the gene more or less able to receive and respond to biochemical signals from the body. In the exercised portions of the bodies, many of the methylation changes were on portions of the genome known as enhancers that can amplify the expression of proteins by genes. And gene expression was noticeably increased or changed in thousands of the muscle-cell genes that the researchers studied. Most of the genes in question are known to play a role in energy metabolism, insulin response and inflammation within muscles. In other words, they affect how healthy and fit our muscles — and bodies — become. Many mysteries still remain but the message of the study is unambiguous. “Through endurance training — a lifestyle change that is easily available for most people and doesn’t cost much money,” says Sara Lindholm, “we can induce changes that affect how we use our genes and, through that, get healthier and more functional muscles that ultimately improve our quality of life.”"

Comment: Re:Not a Real Question (Score 1) 279

by nine-times (#48628153) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How Should a Liberal Arts Major Get Into STEM?

Still, when talking about a "Liberal Arts education," you're talking about a generalized and broad education in a variety of topics, including subjects related to math and science. That's what the term means. No, that doesn't mean that you will study literally every subject, but it's not claiming to be about any particular subject. STEM, meanwhile, seems to be trying to claim to be a valid classification of a particular type of study, distinct from that kind of "broad, well rounded education."

If you say you want to get a Liberal Arts degree, you're telling me, "I'm not going to college for job training in a specific career. I'm going for a general education." If you say you want to get a BS in CompSci, you're basically telling me, "I'm going to college to get training for a career in software development," or something along those lines. Already that's kind of vague, because there are a number of different career paths that involve computer science, and computer science is already a fairly broad field. But if you tell me, "I want a STEM degree," you're telling me, "I have no idea why I'm going to school. I guess I want an education in sciencey stuff that will focus in on a particular field for career training, but I don't actually have any understanding of what field I want to study."

I'm struggling to come up with a good analogy, but it's like if you said, "I really want to travel!" and I asked, "Are you just interested in travelling generally and seeing the world? Or is there a particular place that you want to go?" and you respond, "No, there's a very specific place that I want to go."

So then I ask, "Where's that?" and you say, "Europe or Asia."

Now, I point out, "You're not narrowing it down very much there, you know."

And you respond, "Well you weren't narrowing it down much either, when you asked me if I wanted to see the world!"

And you're not wrong, but it's also a bit of a silly argument now, since the point of talking about "the world" was to be broad and cover everything. Liberal Arts covers everything. I guess that STEM is supposed to be "everything, minus that faggy art stuff, and stuff that makes you think about things."

The tree of research must from time to time be refreshed with the blood of bean counters. -- Alan Kay