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Comment Top Universities Attract Top Talent = No Worries (Score 1) 137

Ask anyone trying to get any academic position at a top tier university, the competition is fierce. At best, the universities are losing established talent only temporarily. The people who left will return, and with their newly acquired industry experience and networks, they will make academic positions even harder to get.

tl;dr - the universities aren't the victims here, new grads and prospective academics are.

Comment Pointless: Cheaper than $170 is NOT required (Score 1) 508

$170 for _middle-class_ students?

That's how many S*bucks coffees or pairs of jeans? Yeah, $170 is chump change so the real reason they don't use the computers is not because they don't have one or can't afford one, it's because they don't want to do the work. Nothing cheaper computers can do about that.

Comment Cycling in N.A. is a vanity, so why care? (Score 1) 696

Three points for that demographic in North America: 1) cycling is not a necessity, 2) they already know vehicle operation rules and regulations, and 3) they choose to ignore vehicle operation rules and regulations.

Very very few adults in North America have to cycle, so it's a vain choice reflecting a desire for better health (that's good) and for appearance (being 'hip'). Note the 'health' aspect is only partially true since every effort appears to be made to reduce the actual effort of biking eg. form fitting cycling apparel, the lightest possible (affordable) bicycles, and a reluctance to slow down or stop. [Aside: contrast this with cyclists in Europe, Asia, Third World where cycling is a necessity due to prohibitive automobile/fuel costs, and is done work/street clothes.]

Very very few adults in North America don't know the 'rules of the road' since the overwhelming majority are also automobile drivers!

No, the problem seems that adult cyclists find the sirens call of a bicycles 'freedom' irresistible. They don't see the bicycle as a 'vehicle' except when convenient, say in court after an injury. As a result, they ignore stop signs, traffic lights, ride pedestrian ways (lawns, parks, crosswalks, sidewalks, etc.), take one-way streets in the wrong direction, squeeze past stopped or slow moving vehicles in traffic, and generally circulate as if they were the most important beings in motion (and possibly immortal?).

They know the risks, they take the risks, they bear the consequences. There are more important things to be concerned with in the world.

Comment Because humans are the solution to ... (Score 1) 106

... and cause of the world's problems ?! Just out of curiousity, why the boom in sea star population? Does this happen regularly ie. part of a natural cycle? And does the interruption of that cycle have any repercussions?

Question: should humans intervene in natural processes that they do not completely understand.

Comment Please note the subtle use of the word "model" (Score 1) 244

Just an observation on the subtle dishonesty at play ...

As happens regularly in the world of biological experimentation, the wording describing the achievement is chosen to remove the 'biology' from the experimental process. Here we see that the experimenters have created a 'brain model', not a brain ... even though it _is_ a brain, living cells, albeit in a very early stage of development. However, it is easier to speak of what you are doing to a 'model' (especially an animal 'model' like a mouse, rat, chimpanzee, dog, etc.,) with the lay public, because 'model' implies not living, feeling, etc. like say, a 'climate model'.

Why worry? Well, if someone feels the need to obfuscate what they are doing, perhaps what they are doing should be looked at a bit more closely.

Comment Ice age part of climate change predictions ... (Score 0) 185

... see? When Earth warms up the planet will exeperience all sorts of extreme weather. That's why no matter what happens, as a climate expert you can claim that whatever is happening weather-wise, is completely in line with your theory that the planet is heating up from man-made causes ('cause it wouldn't heat up naturally because things never change in the universe). So, mini-ice age? Well preposterous unless it really does look like it's going to happen, in which case, models can be adjusted so that it is a complete but _temporary_ manifestation of ... the planet heating up just as the models predict. Yeah! It's good to be a climate scientist because you're never wrong when you follow the party line and models.

Comment Instead of a convenient _plug_ on the monitor ?! (Score 1) 89

So instead of putting a convenient outlet on the monitor to efficiently charge your phone ... you now get an inefficient remote charging device spewing more RF in to the atmosphere to inefficiently charge your phone/device _if_ it has the remote charge capability?

In an era worried about the big bugaboo of 'climate change caused by man', we find yet more ways to inefficiently use resources and so contribute to the problem. How ridiculous. So screw it; saturate your home with remote chargers, leave appliances and lights on all the time, get a pool and run the pumps 24/7, turn your A/C on always, and let your car idle when you do your shopping ... and join the others wondering how we can combat climate change.

Comment If you don't feel some horror ... you should (Score 1) 190

Yeah, it's only mice. For now.

Clearly bigger brains would, in principle, allow more complex computations. And while it's animals, I guess we're all cool with that (?). But eventually, they might get to a life form that is less ... compliant. So what other options are there? Well, people can be made to do things they don't want.

But maybe this is all going to go away. Organic brains are slow, and maybe it will become apparent that silica (or black phosphorus) is better for high performance computation. Then the whole brainlet thing will be relegated to powering obedient cyborgs ... till they become less obedient.

Maybe that's it. The new dominant life-form will evolve from this. Animal brain collectives will outsmart the mono-brained monkey descendants, and rise as the dominant life-form that makes first contact with the aliens.

Whoever dies with the most toys wins.