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Comment Re:Short FPC history and goals overview (Score 4, Interesting) 128

23 years ago? That makes it 1992? I was using Turbo Pascal in 1989!

Re-read the summary.

It says 23 years ago development on the Turbo Pascal compatible project "Free Pascal" was started.

It does NOT say 23 years ago development on Turbo Pascal itself was started.

Comment Re:Easy solution (Score 1) 463

If dealers don't want to sell them, let manufacturers sell direct to the customers.

Taking the dealer network out of the equation is largely irrelevant.

If VW or GM or Ford open a direct to customers showroom and service center the sales team there aren't going to be any more motivated than the dealer network to sell electric cars. The managers are STILL going to be pushing the upsell service packages and cars that will bring the owners in for additional services too; and the commission structure and sales incentive plans will be counting those metrics.

The exception of course is manufacturers that only make electric cars. So ... Tesla.

Comment Re:C is high level? (Score 5, Interesting) 93

is there an obvious difference in the generated assembly?

There would be in most projects that were not outright trying to obscure they were using C++.

Its been a while since I looked at disassembled code, but you used to be able to easily tell what compiler and even version of that compiler was used just from the boilerplate setup code; the way things were 'arranged', exception handlers etc, and obviously library usage was frequently a dead giveaway. Your not going to see a either an iostream or an STL container in a C program.

Comment Re:PASSWORDS (Score 1) 491

Everything should be two factor password system with one being a token/phone/pc,

No thank you. I'd like to be able access things like webmail without a token. The reason I'm using webmail in the first place is usually that I don't have my phone or laptop with me. And the last thing I want is a token that can never leave my side, and that upon being lost or damaged locks me out of everything everywhere.

Additionally, I dont' want to give all these entities my cell phone number. (A common identifier that can be used to tie multiple otherwise disconnected accounts together; that ties me to a geolocation, a real identity and even payment information -- unless i go to steps like carrying around a dedicated burner phone.)

I simply don't care to hand them all that information; especially since their marketing deparments treat it as a gold mine.

And if I'm not using a phone as my token... I definitely don't want to carry around a bag of RSA dongles.

the second one should be a short, (no more than 6 symobls - including every key on a standard keyboard

a) Whose standard keyboard? Not everyone speaks US english or uses a US english keyboard.

b) Why limit it to 6 characters? None of my passwords are that short. And at 6 symbols your are into easy "over the shoulder" password theft territory.

"Aha! But they won't have the token!" you'll counter.

Aha nothing! many of the people who might steal my password over my shoulder would be able to get access to my phone too. Coworkers, roomates, the pickpocket at the restaurant, bar, or checkout line...)

Each authenticated resource has a different risk profile, and merits different levels of protection. The registrar account holding our domains and our investment accounts needs a lot more security than a logon at slashdot. The same rules for both don't even make sense.

I certainly don't want a dongle for /. and I don't care to give dice my phone number either; nor have to deal with 2 factor to login to /.

Passwords (and authentication in generall) is a complicated problem. And standardizing electronic authentication is as absurd as standardizing physical authentication. (Can you imagine how absurd you'd look declaring that everything from your luggage to the bank vault should use the same type of key to open the lock?)

Comment The trouble with non-antibiotics (Score 5, Informative) 136

Replacing antibiotics with proteins and possibly phage is a doomed proposition if done as a simple substitution. The advantage that antibiotics have that proteins can never match is they are low molecular weight chemicals. thus you don't have to give someone a high mass dose, it can be absorbed in the gut or membranes, and it can get into cells. Furthermore proteins are relatively easy to decompose without inventing any custom hardware, they are also easy to recognize specifically (which is also why they can provoke an immune response if not properly humanized). Thus proteins are not substitutes and start out with many many orders of magnitude handicap in molecular weight and accessibility. Therefore to overcome that one needs to exploit protein therapies in different ways. proteins are good at things like catalysis. The intital activity of a chemical is stochiometric in which one chemical binds one receptor. But an enzyme can turn over many many reactions, so one can, if used right, have a manyfold activity. (on the otherhand, this advanage is not clear cut, since the receptors bound by standard chemicals may amplify the signal as well, and many desired targets medical for proteins will be stochiometric binders not catalytic enzymes). A big big advantage of proteins is their potential for specificity which will both diminish their side effects and could concentrate them into a specific target area. Imagine for instance protein therapeutic which only affected a certain pathogen and left the other bacteria in your gut alone. Finally, if the protein is large enough then it can remain in the circulatory system longer before the body removes it. But that also means higher molecular weight which can be bad.

Phage are even higher molecular weight. But they can reproduce. And presumably they might be tailored to only infect the bad bacteria as their host for reproduction. But they also might become antigens and your own body would clear them.

Both of these therapies have killer applications and are not to be dismissed. Their extreme specificty will completely change medicine even more than antibiotics did. But they are not in the near future any sort of replacement for antibiotics.

Comment Re:Follow the money (Score 1) 211

No my logic is that claiming to be X when you are really Y is wrong because it hurts the Y group.

Your problem is that you are blaming someone with disrupted mental faculties for their behaviour.

A person in a coma can't be blamed for not picking you up at the airport despite your prior arrangements before they fell into a coma. And a heroin junkie can't really be blamed for spending every penny on heroin.

If I bundle a bunch of subprime mortgages together and lie and claim that it's a AAA investment, I've harmed the investors.

Sure, but unless you are claiming that the functioning of your brain was literally chemically impaired throughout the process by a chemical alteration that created a base overriding drive to commit securities fraud then its not really applicable here.

By your logic, it's okay for a banker to rip off all of their poorest clients because they *need* to make their Lamborghini payment.

Are you really equating the brain chemistry of someone with a heroin problem so bad they are a homeless street junkie to the brain chemistry of a dishonest banker here?

That doesn't mean you can't sympathize with the addict whose life has gone so far off the rails that they are willing to engage in deception to support their habit

They aren't "willing to engage in deception" their brain lives for heroin now. Expecting them to make better choices is absurd, the person who took the heroin isn't in control anymore. The heroin addicted brain is running show.

. If they *need* heroin, is it okay if they engage in armed robbery?

Of course not. But it goes back to my rapid dog comparison. Its not the dogs "fault" it's biting people. Its not ok for it to bite people, and we need to deal with it... but the dog isn't going to get better on its own. You can't yell "Make better choices" and "Heel boy" in your best alpha male voice and expect the rabid dog to settle down. Its rabid. Its brain chemistry is altered. Its not operating under normal dog brain rules now, and can't be expected to. The rabies are in the drivers seat.

A heroin junkie is the same... its not the person it was.

The junkie made a bad decision to take heroin in the first place, and just as with alcohol we've made a collective decision to hold one accountable for the results of the things you do while you are impaired (largely to avoid the undesirable situation where people would claim they werent' responsible for shit they did while drunk), but it is strictly effective as a *deterrent* approach to make the sober person think twice about getting impaired in the first place.

On a purely practical level ONCE they are impaired, they can't, by definition, be expected to be making rational decisions anymore.

Nothing will ever be attempted if all possible objections must be first overcome. -- Dr. Johnson