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Comment Synrock (Score 1) 62

Australia developed a technology to manipulate radioactive waste into a ceramic where the the radioactive material is locked into the crystal lattice of the material. The advantage of this process is once you bury it, it won't leach radioactive material into your ground water supplies. TFA wasn't clear if their new fancy concrete had this property.

Comment Re:Here's hoping (Score 1) 28

Well, I'm not in it for the money either, I'm comfortably retired. All of my books are posted on my web site in multiple formats, and the physical copies are so cheap I usually lose money on them. And the first one was by reader requests when I was posting the "paxil diaries" at k5 after my divorce.

Rather than selling my place, the mortgage company stole it. The Illinois Attorney General sued them, I got $1200 for being defrauded out of my home. Most of my family and my oldest friends live in the St Louis area, now that I'm retired the only thing keeping me in Springfield is my oldest daughter lives here.

Yes, you can go to the top of the arch. I did, when it was brand new. I remember watching it be built. Back in the early 1960s it was like a trip inside a science fiction book.

United States

US Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia Has Died (theguardian.com) 784

clovis writes: US Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia has died in his sleep while on a hunting trip near Marfa, Texas. Justice Scalia was a Constitutional originalist and textualist. He did not believe the Constitution was a living document to be interpreted with the evolving standards of modern times.

I, for one, am very interested to see what happens next.

AI

Would You Bet Against Sex Robots? AI 'Could Leave Half Of World Unemployed' 367

Machines could put more than half the world's population out of a job in the next 30 years, according to a computer scientist who said on Saturday that artificial intelligence's threat to the economy should not be understated. Vardi, a professor at Rice University and Guggenheim fellow, said that technology presents a more subtle threat than the masterless drones that some activists fear. He suggested AI could drive global unemployment to 50%, wiping out middle-class jobs and exacerbating inequality. "Humanity is about to face perhaps its greatest challenge ever, which is finding meaning in life after the end of 'in the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread'," he said. "We need to rise to the occasion and meet this challenge."

Comment Re:Make IT a real profession (Score 2) 381

Yes, it's possible to chip away at the value of a profession, laws that allow "peers accredited by other countries" to do, say, radiology over the internet from Chennai.
But the professional organizations double as unions of a sort. They are dedicated to protecting the public, not their members. (Most frequent question at the professional engineer's association where I live, "What do I get for my dues?" A: "Nothing. We require you to pay them so we can protect the public from bad engineers.")...but in the case of diluting a profession with lower-quality competition, that's the same thing.
So, hell yes, you already see the AMA working against having immigrant doctors certified without passing the same difficulty of tests and practice-time.
What if there were a "Professional Information Technologists Association of California" (and 49 other states) pressing legislators for laws that required these new-hires to pass a few hard tests and prove their experience before getting certification to take those jobs?
There's *NOBODY* pushing for that law now. It takes organization, planning, money. Putting that organization together would be about 10% of the stuff that a real professional organization would do for you.

Comment Make IT a real profession (Score 3, Insightful) 381

People are arguing this as if it's a political football and furcrissakes turning it into capitalism-vs-communism.

It's about trade vs profession.

This isn't a serious problem with doctors, dentists, lawyers, accountants, or teachers. Why? They're real professions, licensed by the local state. This isn't an inherent barrier to foreigners - if they meet the qualifications, it's a fraction of a year's effort and pay to get certified - but it's a huge barrier to the underqualified.

The hirers here are hoping that (a) the new-hires can pick it up well enough that with a few extra staff (and still cheaper) they can keep up production and (b) that the cracks won't show until they're on to their next promotion.

IT needs to be a Real Profession for about six reasons, but as a side-effect, it would end this continual pressure downward on the salaries of everybody in the industry by various efforts to dilute the talent pool with poorly-qualified competitors. Hiring kids away from college is another.

Just about anybody used to be able to hang out a shingle and be a dentist or doctor; engineering was a trade you picked up on the job working under a builder. Anybody want to go back to that? If not, support professionalising IT.

Comment Re:Here's hoping (Score 1) 28

I've been hibernating. Winter's not so bad when you don't have to go to work every day. I've been more or less steadily writing. I decided last fall to farm the SF out to the magazines before posting them; if one of them publishes me I'll become better known. Right now it's only a couple hundred people.

I never realized how many people write. Even the smaller circulation magazines get hundreds of stories every month, and out of those hundreds only a half dozen are printed. I've come very close so far. Most rejections are form letters, word for word the same no matter what magazine, but one rejection was personalized, from C.C. Finlay, Editor in Chief of F&SF (he didn't like the ending). That's big time!

Right now the magazines have five stories, I have two more I'm editing and three more unfinished (two may never get finished, I'm kind of stuck). I've posted two stories here at slashdot this year.

I'll be moving to the St Louis area in a few months.

Comment Re:This is a big bitchslap to Mozilla (Score 1) 277

This is a server on which developers develop web apps. Having access to multiple browsers on the server itself is useful. Not all servers are DMZ servers where reduction of attack surface is the key point. Many are "crash and burn" servers where people can do their job without worrying about causing damage.

Comment Re:This is a big bitchslap to Mozilla (Score 3, Insightful) 277

Yea, Chrome gets a bad rap for how much resources it uses but, it actually has a good reason and, as you pointed out, if it starts hitting your system's ceiling, it starts scaling back.

That's not acceptable. A web browser isn't the only, or even main thing I use my computer for. I don't want my VM to be unable to start because Chrome has used all the memory it could find, less a small bit.

It's not cooperative. It assumes that all memory available has been made available for it only.
Chrome is like a self-serve cafeteria where some people are gluttons who hog all the food, and latecomers only get crumbs. It might be legal, but it sure isn't playing nice. We shouldn't have to have guards standing at the food stations to prevent greedy bastards from ruining the experience for others. Taking all the biscuits and putting one or two back isn't generosity.

Firefox isn't much better. One of my users forgot to close a browser window on a server before going on vacation, and just periodic auto-refresh had caused it to gobble up a quite a few gigabytes of RAM - a large portion of the server's RAM. The server has extra RAM because of disk caching, to the benefit of all users. I ended up having to implement cgroup memory limiting because of Firefox.

Comment Re:Is there a greater risk of micropenis? (Score 1) 134

I am 3.7% Neanderthal (top 99th percentile).

Given that H.S.Sapiens and H. (S.) Neanderthalensis share 98.5% of the genetic material, it would be difficult to be more than 2.5%,or less than 98.5%, depending on how you see it.

What you probably mean is that you have 3.7% of the genetic markers that have so far been identified as being inherited from Neanderthals. Which is a completely different thing from being 3.7% Neanderthal.

I haven't tested my DNA, as there are large privacy concerns with the available testers (none I have found agree to destroying the test and all results except what they send you), but given that I have a large head, big joints, gap behind my wisdom teeth, and hail from where the largest concentration of Neanderthal-inherited DNA is, it wouldn't surprise me if it's up there.
I'm okay with that - it's part of being human.

Comment Re:Never seen so many allergies in people (Score 1) 134

This is quite humorous! Americans eat raw meat.

Yes, but only beef. Never pork, lamb, goat, horse or any other meats. Certainly not poultry, as the US seems to be able to keep salmonella out of their poultry production. (Which is why Spaghetti Carbonara is almost never made with raw eggs in the US, and don't get me started on the atrocity called egg nogg over here),
And most Americans would never venture past beef, pork, chicken and turkey anyhow. Sometimes fish, if it's breaded thickly enough, fried, and with enough lemon on it that you couldn't tell it from tofu.

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