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Comment: Re:About Fucking Time (Score 1) 365

by dwye (#48623967) Attached to: In Breakthrough, US and Cuba To Resume Diplomatic Relations

First, the government already seized that land. Any claims to that land by returned exiles will probably be met with the same attitude as claims by Canadians to lands that their Loyalist ancestors lost after the US Revolution.

Second, the land is probably now reserved for use by higher level Party members; they won't be moving.

Third, Cuban prostitutes and taxi drivers make more money than their doctors or University professors.

Yea, the Dictatorship of the Proletariat !

Comment: Re:About Fucking Time (Score 1) 365

by dwye (#48623907) Attached to: In Breakthrough, US and Cuba To Resume Diplomatic Relations

Except that there is a limit to how much US citizens can buy per trip, which works out to about half a dozen of the best cigars. My question is how much can you bring back from Canada? I can imagine a business with otherwise unemployed Detroit youths crossing the bridge to Ontario, buying a handful of loose cigars, and recrossing as many times s day as are allowed.

Anyway, the Cuban exiled cigar families that moved to other countries in the Caribbean produce cigars just as good as Cubans made by Cuban bureaucrats, often better.

Comment: Re:Respuctfully, Greenwald Is Wrong (Score 1) 103

by dwye (#48548195) Attached to: Neglecting the Lessons of Cypherpunk History

Sorry, but I feel that gutless cowards have the same free speech rights as the rest of us, even to advocating for others to snivel and bow and tug their forelocks.

After all, AC is desperately trying to save our families' lives from our advocating copyrights shorter than 150 years after the death of the last person associated with some work, or net neutrality (or against it, or whatever), or using mil-spec encryption on our daily emails.

Comment: Re:Respuctfully, Greenwald Is Wrong (Score 1) 103

by dwye (#48545279) Attached to: Neglecting the Lessons of Cypherpunk History

To be fair, the AC is just expressing the same attitude as every non-political person in Eastern Europe during the Cold War. Or the attitude of slaves in the Antebellum South. Or Hegel's redefinition of "freedom" as the recognition of necessity.

Not everyone is cut out to be Nat Turner, or John Brown. The AC clearly isn't.

Comment: Re:intelligent non-human life (Score 1) 334

by dwye (#48539317) Attached to: Aliens Are Probably Everywhere, Just Not Anywhere Nearby

I know about the Toba Hypothesis, but the last time that I read something related to the population crunch, the crunch and the eruption were supposedly not close enough together for cause and effect. If Toba is back under indictment, good, that makes things make sense; OTOH, things making too much sense is often a sign that you are missing something important, because reality tends towards messiness.

Comment: Re:I hate this name (Score 1) 140

by dwye (#48533805) Attached to: NASA's Orion Capsule Reaches Orbit

Well, yes, if you convert it from one big rock to a big bunch of pebbles too small to survive passing through the atmosphere, it WILL help a lot. Still years without summers, but not a total extinction event. They never show the effects of all that particulate matter on the sunsets, never mind the next winter lasting two years or more (at least in New England), but then rom-cons never show the couple getting bored with each other after a few years, either.

BTW, "Man of Steel, Woman of Kleenex" was a non-fiction essay, not a story, and it deliberately left off the obvious solution, a simulated red sun environment (a real red sun worked for Kal-El and every other Kryptonian, why not a simulated one for Junior-El?).

Comment: Re:hang on (Score 1) 334

by dwye (#48532121) Attached to: Aliens Are Probably Everywhere, Just Not Anywhere Nearby

He is probably assuming omni-directional radio versus lasers. OTOH, at light year distances, even the best focused laser spreads like a flashlight beam does, so rubycodez is still wrong.

For the past century, we have been radiating radio waves like a small radio star, and are obvious above background for almost 100 light years. Unfortunately, in Habitable Planets For Man (which "solved" the Drake equation with values now known to be wildly optimistic) the estimate was that communication-capable civilizations were about 1000 light years apart, so even the entire world isn't good enough to show above some possible someone-else's background.

Comment: Re:intelligent non-human life (Score 1) 334

by dwye (#48531895) Attached to: Aliens Are Probably Everywhere, Just Not Anywhere Nearby

Neanderthals make up about 3% of non-African human DNA, and not all the same 3% (supposedly we can ID about 20% of their genome from various groups), so you cannot really call them a separate species. Subspecies, maybe, but not their own species.

Intelligence is a bit of an advantage - there is a reason that predators are always more intelligent than their preferred prey - but it only gets one so far. A super-intelligent panda or koala, bound to one food source in one biome, would be an extinction waiting to happen. To support a really intelligent species you need adaptability on the same order as the Norway black rat. Ocean-based might be different, given that cuttlefish seem to be really quite intelligent even though they only live a few years and so have little chance of actually using their smarts for anything.

Comment: Re:intelligent non-human life (Score 1) 334

by dwye (#48531663) Attached to: Aliens Are Probably Everywhere, Just Not Anywhere Nearby

Then who/what was capable of reducing the population of Europe by 1/3 (to take the monkish chronicles) to 50% (based on the number of abandoned English boroughs) to 2/3 (last estimate that I read, based on abandoned boroughs not enough to maintain the pre-Death populations of the still-occupied ones)?

The only close competitor would be whatever almost extincted humanity about 80,000 years ago, reducing the African portion of the species to the equivalent of about 1000 unrelated individuals (I have no idea if it affected the Neanderthal, Denisovian, or the Indonesian "hobbit" groups, or any other non-African groups that we have not yet identified, by as much), and I would question whether hunter-gatherers ever class as "in large groups"

Comment: Re:Ummm ... Duh? (Score 1) 165

As far as them being "lazy and incompetent" goes, the people designing the Internet of Things are doing nothing different than the people who designed the Internet of networks. Back then, they assumed that the main danger would be unexpected network partitioning, not some man-in-the-middle attacker sending lies to major routers or DNS sites (hell, back then DNS was a file maintained by Jon Postell out of the goodness of his heart, sent out every so often to replace the previous /etc/hosts file for all hosts), or worse.

Leaving off security to make something useful fast is an easy tradeoff. That it is too dangerous is hard for people in high trust societies (like invented the Internet or picked it over their own ISO network) to wrap their heads around. Maybe DARPA should have outsourced the design or development to the USSR or Afghanistan, where rampant paranoia just meant that someone was paying attention, but it didn't.

"Why waste negative entropy on comments, when you could use the same entropy to create bugs instead?" -- Steve Elias

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