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Comment: Re:Star Wars v. Star Trek (Score 1) 495

by gammaraybuster (#33388844) Attached to: How Star Wars Trumped Star Trek For Scientific Accuracy

What I find offensive is the implied lack of respect for science in an 'artistic' context. The writers don't care to engage those with a modicum of scientific literacy. While it takes some effort for them to become educated in scientific principles, it seems like a tiny investment compared to endless millions invested in SFX, marketing and the rest of the blah blah.

Conversely, I also respect science more that expresses itself with an aesthetic sensibility as well.

Wireless Networking

+ - SPAM: We're Paying What? For WiFi, 3G

Submitted by
itwbennett
itwbennett writes "Companies are spending about $6 billion annually in remote access — about half of which could be avoided, says Gartner analyst Eric Paulak. To make matters worse, most companies have no idea how much they're spending on out-of-office access because 'about 70% of all remote connectivity expenses are buried in expense reports,' says Paulak. And quite possibly, even if your company does know these numbers, it might be hard to reduce spending — not because better solutions aren't available, but because it might require more spending by IT in order to save the overall company significantly more money. 'The average IT manager today loves it when they can take a known cost in their budget and make it a hidden cost on somebody else's budget. So IT has to make a case that it's good for the company,' says Paulak."
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Education

Keeping a PC Personal At School? 695

Posted by kdawson
from the mine-mine-mine dept.
Berto Kraus writes "As one of the most tech-oriented students in my art-oriented institution, I'm usually the one with the laptop. This causes frequent requests from other students to read mail, check some site, or connect it to the projector to display a file from their Flash drive. For the sake of my privacy, the health of my laptop, and my own peace of mind, I'm reluctant. But telling my compatriots to go to our building supervisor and ask him for a desktop-on-a-cart, as they should do, is considered rude and unfriendly. Now, I could dual-boot Ubuntu, or carry around a Linux-on-a-stick. Or I could embed the computer in my skull. For many reasons, none of these solutions is ideal. So I'm asking you, insightful and funny Slashdotters, what would you do to keep your PC personal at school?"

Comment: Re:How depressing (Score 2, Informative) 75

by gammaraybuster (#27986723) Attached to: <em>Left 4 Dead</em> SDK Beta Released
I don't know why this is modded flamebait - it's constructive criticism and trying to make sense of an incoherent assertion. Does the original poster think it's "not wise to get any Valve game" for the PC?

On the other hand I sympathize with the parent. It's hard to write anything comprehensible in under a minute!

Comment: No comment? (Score 5, Insightful) 78

by gammaraybuster (#27279461) Attached to: John Mather On the Building of the James Webb Space Telescope

I had to reply to this thread, seeing only 9 hidden comments so far. That's a bit sad, since the JWST will be one of the most important science events since the Hubble. It will be an infrared telescope like the Spitzer, but it will effectively be an optical telescope for the distant universe because of red shift! And it will be able to peer into the distant past unlike any telescope prior.

In the sense of being a "space race" this is one area where the US really shines. There's no other nation that really is in the running, although there are lots of international contributions (yay Canada!). Maybe it's because of the language barrier, but I can't think of a single Russian space telescope. I can name a half dozen US scopes and one or two from the ESA. (Be sure to look up the Chandra, Fermi, Spitzer, XMM-Newton)

But then it's not really a space race, it's about science, so maybe it's a little boring for the general public. I only hope Slashdotter's are more aware that this is one of the great scientific adventures of our time.

Comment: Re:A great idea (Score 2, Insightful) 237

by gammaraybuster (#22117108) Attached to: Asteroid Missions May Replace Lunar Base Plans

Asteroids ... have considerably more scientific value than the moon.

That's debatable, but to the extent it is true we should be sending unmanned probes to the asteroids, not expensive manned missions. Besides, manned missions really don't have much to do with science.

The moon is much more like Mars than any little near Earth asteroid. Before we go to Mars we'll need to learn how to live there for several months, and constructing a base on the moon is a great way to gain that knowledge. It's far enough away and a similar enough environment to require similar engineering solutions, but near enough to rescue the mission if something goes awry. Also, landing on and lifting off the Moon is just what we want to be good at for a manned Mars mission. The moon's gravity is about 1/6 earth, Mar's is about 1/4. The main difference is Mar's atmosphere, but we won't learn anything about landing on an atmosphered planet from an asteroid mission.

Personally I think going to Mars is going to be a hell of a tough prospect, much harder than most people think. I can imagine a future where the first successful two-year mission barely survives the ordeal and the bleakness and suffering of the explorers turns everyone off the whole idea. Probably what we need is a faster, better, cheaper propulsion system to get us there in a month or less.

Enlightenment

+ - Sun spot activity at a 1,000 year high

Submitted by Burnhard
Burnhard (1031106) writes "A new analysis shows that the Sun is more active now than it has been at anytime in the previous 1,000 years. Scientists based at the Institute for Astronomy in Zurich used ice cores from Greenland to construct a picture of our star's activity in the past. They say that over the last century the number of sunspots rose at the same time that the Earth's climate became steadily warmer."
Google

+ - Google tries to sell ads by criticizing "Sicko->

Submitted by KeepQuiet
KeepQuiet (992584) writes "Philipp Lenssen noticed that Google Health Ad blog team posted a review to bash the new documentary, Sicko, of Michael Moore. It reads "With all the coverage, it's a shame no one focuses on the industry's numerous prescription programs, charity services, and philanthropy efforts." Lauren Turner then tells to health industry companies that "We can place text ads (...) within our ever-expanding content network. Whatever the problem, Google can act as a platform for educating the public and promoting your message.""
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Space

+ - Earth Bacteria Hitch A Ride To The Stars

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Space.com has an article on how old rocket stages are carrying bacteria from Earth to interstellar space. The four upper rocket stages were used to boost deep space probes Voyager 1, Voyager 2, Pioneer 10 and New Horizons. The spacecraft were sterilized, but the rocket stages were not, and they now carry the bacteria of the engineers who handled them. If the rocket stages hit a habitable planet, and the bacteria survive the journey, they would be able to reproduce and colonize the planet."
Sci-Fi

+ - In the UK: Genetic screening for superman?

Submitted by
Rmorph
Rmorph writes "This commentator wonders: How long before we start screening for blue eyes and blond hair?

[url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/6634015.stm /]The BBC is reporting[/url] that the UK Human Fertility and Embryonic Authority has just upped the ante in the Genetic screening stakes — apparently backpedalling on their own rules in order to screen embryos for a "squint" (Previously it was determined that screening should only be used to avoid life threatening conditions).

Dr David King, a molecular biologist, and director of [url=http://www.hgalert.org/]Human Genetics Alert[/url] is quoted as saying "The HFEA has ignored public opinion and has ignored its own rules which say that PGD should only be allowed for serious medical conditions."

Have the floodgates just opened towards for the push to genetically superior humans?

It begs the question, that slashdotters may be able to answer: given that the UK's HFEA is a self-regulating body, what is the situation like elsewhere in the world, where even self-regulation may not be in force? Japan? Russia?
Are there countries where the search for Superbabys has already begun in earnest?"

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