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Comment: Re:Mission creep. (Score 1) 240

by mpe (#47505657) Attached to: How One School District Handled Rolling Out 20,000 iPads
Saving even a couple of hundred dollars per unit might be a drop in the bucket when compared with the peripheral costs. Yes, IT departments everywhere might be able to save a little money on the purchase of each computer by buying all of their parts from NewEgg and installing Linux on the computer that they cobble together from parts. Still, it ends up being cheaper, when you add up all the peripheral costs, to buy ready-made computers from Dell with Windows pre-installed.

Except that OEM preinstalls tend to be of very little vaule in "enterprise" environments. Even those fairly free of "crapware".

Comment: Re:It gets worse... (Score 1) 655

by mpe (#47501823) Attached to: Russian Government Edits Wikipedia On Flight MH17
Ok thanks for the clarification. Terrorists indeed claimed to have stolen a BUK system from local Donbass military base, on 29/06: https://twitter.com/kram_ua/st... Here's another claim - they're saying they fixed it: https://twitter.com/Dbnmjr/sta...
UA army claimed all BUKs were crippled beyond repair, so it is also likely that specialists and materials needed for repair (if it indeed happened) came from Russia.


Or what was stolen was rather less "crippled" than the Ukrainian Government would like to admit.
It isn't as if politicians tend to be the most honest of people, even in peacetime.

Comment: Re:Android on my pi? (Score 1) 39

I wonder how much of that has to do with the tendency among Android app publishers to make their products exclusive to Google Play Store, which is (legally) available only on devices with preloaded Android OS. This makes AOSP distributions undesirable to end users.

On the other hand any kind of "app store" in an "enterprise environment" where installing any kind of software is about the last thing "end users" should be doing.

Comment: Re:Finally! (Score 1) 467

by mpe (#47493103) Attached to: World Health Organization Calls For Decriminalization of Drug Use
I agree with your comments on this as well. What would we do with all the prison space currently housed by drug-related occupants? That would put a heavy dent in the income of the organizations that manage the prison systems (which are mostly cronies of the politicians).

Could always put politicians (and their cronies) in there :)

Comment: Re: Finally! (Score 1) 467

by mpe (#47493097) Attached to: World Health Organization Calls For Decriminalization of Drug Use
As far as the US is concerned, I don't think use of substances like crystal meth or pcp would be an issue if more enjoyable/safe drugs were equally available. What makes meth so cheap and available is an artificial inflation of other substances caused by Federal drug policy.

One side effect of prohibition is that of "legal hights". Which whilst not illegal often turn out to be considerably more toxic then what's been previously banned.

Comment: Re:There's another treatment that stops most T2 (Score 1) 253

by mpe (#47486129) Attached to: New Treatment Stops Type II Diabetes
One thing I can caution you about, as a med student, is to question where the guidelines for the "correct" cholesterol came from. Hint: it's probably an echo chamber, and not tied to scientific evidence.

IIRC the numbers were the lowest the drug companies could get away with.

Anyway, what I'm saying is not that statins are bad, but merely to question what your goal cholesterol really should be. Your brain has a lot of cholesterol (myelin is high in cholesterol) and cholesterol modulates your cell wall plasticity. Too low would be bad.

One very intresting thing is pattern B LDL particles contain less cholesterol than pattern A LDL particles. Which rather means that breaking lipoproteins apart and looking at their lipid "cargo" is likely to be less useful than looking at the lipoproteins themselves.

Comment: Re:meanwhile overnight... (Score 1) 502

by mpe (#47485927) Attached to: Russia Prepares For Internet War Over Malaysian Jet
and thus will avoid hitting Russian aircraft by default

Or Ukrainian (military) aircraft should the system have been "acquired" from the Ukrainian military. In which case the operators would have been expected to either disable or override the IFF function. Anyway the transponder on a civilian plane is NEVER going to return the correct response to a military IFF. It probably isn't going to return anything at all, since as far as it's concerned it's not seeing a vaild signal.

Comment: Re:meanwhile overnight... (Score 1) 502

by mpe (#47485837) Attached to: Russia Prepares For Internet War Over Malaysian Jet
"Although it has its own identification friend or foe system, this is only able to establish whether the target being tracked is a friendly aircraft. It is the electronic equivalent of a sentry calling out: "Who goes there?". If there is no reply, all you know is that it is not one of your own combat aircraft. It would not give you a warning that you were tracking an airliner."

The rebels don't have any of their own aircraft so there'd be no reason to do this in the first place.
A sentry who knows that an intruder cannot possibly be one of their own might well follow the "shoot first ask questions later" approach.
Distinguishing between a military and civilian plane is not so easy and even trained radar operators can get this wrong. As was the case with Iran Air 655.

Comment: Re:meanwhile overnight... (Score 1) 502

by mpe (#47485717) Attached to: Russia Prepares For Internet War Over Malaysian Jet
What sort of "rebels" would have the training an ability to set up and operate a crew served weapon? I severely doubt that such a system is "point and shoot" as it has 3 separate, independent mobile systems.

So "rebels" cannot possibly be soldiers. Nor can they read manuals. There were reports last month of people quite literally taking weapons from museums. Also the Soviet army was made up mostly of conscripts. Even weapons systems intended for all volunteer armies are often designed to be easy to use.

Comment: Re:meanwhile overnight... (Score 1) 502

by mpe (#47485635) Attached to: Russia Prepares For Internet War Over Malaysian Jet
The question is, was this really a launcher that the Russians gave the rebels? I looked up the Wikipedia page for the BUK missile system last night, and there was a link on that article to a report from Jane's that said Ukraine had some in their possession from their days as a Soviet satellite state. It makes me wonder if the BUK (being a Soviet-era weapons system dating back to 1979) wasn't just misplaced somewhere - if the National Institutes of Health can misplace 300 vials of deadly diseases and biological weapons, it's not a stretch to think that the Ukrainian military might've had a BUK somewhere and forgotten about it.

Or the Ukrainian military/government dosn't want to admit that the rebels had stolen it from them. Even though such a thing would not be unheard of in a civil war.

Comment: Re:meanwhile overnight... (Score 1) 502

by mpe (#47485567) Attached to: Russia Prepares For Internet War Over Malaysian Jet
The only way the Russian's can "win" this propaganda war is if they can somehow convince those Europeans who make decisions about sanctions that they had nothing to do with the downing of the passenger jet. People will want to know where that Buk missile launcher came from, who gave the order to shoot, and where that missile launcher is now. If there is any evidence that the Russians had any direct involvement with this, no amount of propaganda will help them outside of the regions where they have complete control of the media.

About the only way the Russians could come out looking like the "good guys" would be to arrest those responsible as war criminals. Assuming they are from the pro-Russian "rebels". But where to try them would be tricky, given the large number of Dutch passengers on the plane.

Comment: Re:Wait for it... (Score 2) 750

by mpe (#47476927) Attached to: Malaysian Passenger Plane Reportedly Shot Down Over Ukraine
Translating from russian... "Near Torez (city) an An-26 airplane was just shot down, it crashed somewhere beyond "Progress" mine site. We warned beforehand - do not fly over "our zone". Here's another video proof of the next "birdfall". A birdie crashed down beyond terricon (mine excavation site), missed living areas. Population not harmed. We also allegedly have info on another SU-25 shot down"

The AN-26 is a turboprop, vaguely similar to a DHC-8. The SU-25 is a twin engined fighter. The most obviously identifiable piece of wreckage is clearly part of a large gas turbine engine.

Comment: Re:Seems like old times (Score 4, Informative) 750

by mpe (#47476755) Attached to: Malaysian Passenger Plane Reportedly Shot Down Over Ukraine
And those even older may remember Korean Air Lines Flight 007 and Korean Air Lines Flight 902 (both shot down by the Soviet Union). It seems they have done it again.

Both KAL 007 and KAL 902 were off course. At the moment this looks more like Iran Air 655 with a civil aircraft on course exactly where they had every reason to be.

Comment: Re:Anonymity makes sense for special cases. (Score 1) 237

by mpe (#47464329) Attached to: Pseudonyms Now Allowed On Google+
For every troll you discourage by using their "real name" (probably not their real name anyway, and they always make a new account or connect from a different IP), you'll lose many other people who would have given useful comments, but won't do so if they were going to be identifiable.

Or who don't want their comments in one forum linked to a completly different and unrelated forum.

Optimization hinders evolution.

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