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Comment: Re:Tor's trust model has always been broken (Score 1) 43

Sure you need a directory service. But it needs to be tamper proof. OP is suggesting that all service names should be public keys. So all DHT records that would be published / fetched can be signed. And the connection to the service can also be signed.

That way noone can guess the current key for a known service. Then the only chance of a sybil attack is to convince someone that your key is the service they are looking for. Something that should only be possible by intercepting the first request.

Comment: Re:Stupid (Score 5, Interesting) 128

by tyme (#49787475) Attached to: Computer Chips Made of Wood Promise Greener Electronics

Except that this substrate is not being used for Si based semiconductors, but for GaAs instead. Also, using the wood-based substrate means that you can use 99% less of the semiconductor material (GaAs which is rarer than Si, and also poisonous). This will make specific classes of electronic devices (specifically radio and microwave frequency devices) much cheaper, and much less hazardous to dispose of, which is a big win.

Comment: Re:Germany should pay war reparations for WWII (Score 1) 742

If the economic modelling you use does not have a recession as one of it's possible states. It is not a model of the economy.

If your model of how individual agents interact is not consistent with the rules of double entry book-keeping, you do not have a model of the economy.

If your model of a firms profits don't line up with empirical evidence... you get the idea.

When you impose that model on an actual economy, and it fails to follow your expectations. It isn't the real world that is at fault.

Paraphrasing Hyman Minsky; The natural instability of capitalism is upwards. When firms take small risks and they pay off, they learn to take bigger and bigger risks. Bankers have an incentive to fund larger and larger risks. Asset prices climb. It becomes profitable to speculate on assets without having the income to cover your interest payments. Until the debt level peaks and the whole process works in reverse. A boom becomes a slump. There's a period of pain, when bankers and firms reduce their willingness to take risks. The economy recovers, firms take small risks and they pay off....

But everyone starts the next cycle, still carrying some of their debts from the previous cycle. If there's high inflation, who cares. You can easily pay off your debts with your increased income. But when the mountain of debt in the system gets too large, inflation is impossible.

Once inflation turns to de-flation, the cycle is broken. What starts as a period of tranquility. A "Great Moderation" if you will. Suddenly turns into a crisis. Debtors go bankrupt, money is destroyed. Distressed sellers discover the market is much smaller than they thought it was. Even low risk projects fail as the economy suddenly shrinks.

But if the government sector taxes more in the good times, and runs a deficit during a slump. They can dampen the cycle. They can lessen the pain of the inevitable crash. But do you really think that the people will allow high taxation during a long period with very little trouble?

Do you really think the government caused this? A government run by economists who haven't learnt the right lessons from history. Economists who misunderstand and ignore the role of money and credit. Economists who codified their model of a perfect economy into law. A model which has nothing to do with how the real economy actually works.

Comment: Re:They're bums, why keep them around (Score 1) 742

If you want to understand the situation, you have to study the role of credit and money in the economy. Both of which, mainstream economics will mistakenly tell you are irrelevant. If you've got an hour, I'd recommend watching one of Steve Keen's recent lectures on YouTube.

When banks lend, they create money and spending power with every loan. When you repay a loan, or go bankrupt, that money you didn't spend doesn't flow around the economy. It didn't become someone else's income.

The people of Greece, have less money that's travelling slower around their economy. They're in a depression. It's not like they're all hoarding it under a mattress. The Maastricht treaty places limits on both the annual government deficit and the total government debt. So at this time, when their people are out of work, the government can't pay them welfare. Making a bad problem so much worse.

The Maastricht treaty is a failed economics experiment. Perpetrated by fools, who turned their economic ideology into law. Giving nations like Greece no way to soften the impact of a financial crisis. Turning an inevitable recession, into a much greater depression.

Comment: Re:They're bums, why keep them around (Score 1) 742

the "austerity measurements" are just measurements to make the government not use more money than they have

FTFY. This isn't about the country, it's about the government. When money is leaving the country because the private sector is repaying (or defaulting on) debts, the government is powerless to stimulate the economy. When their tax receipts are reduced during a downturn, they can't increase welfare payments to reduce the misery of the population.

Comment: Re:Easier to learn != easier to use (Score 1) 382

by steelfood (#49751773) Attached to: How Java Changed Programming Forever

For the mass of getters and setters, it's a matter of having a good IDE that'll auto-generate those for you. Remember that discussion on IDE's? Good ones do more than autocomplete. They also generate boilerplate.

Now, it's certainly true that needing all this boilerplate completely suck, and a good IDE only makes it suck just a bit less.

Then again, you can just make everything public. And, you can even make everything static. It's not like you're forced into the OO paradigm.

I'll see your type erasure and raise you operator overloading. Operator overloading is bad. Really bad. Javascript bad. Java's one instance of an overloaded operator, the '+' operator, is the one instance of really bad language design. So are the arrays, which are a hybrid of primitive and object.

Comment: Re:language is OK, programmers are terrible (Score 3, Insightful) 382

by steelfood (#49751629) Attached to: How Java Changed Programming Forever

Any programming language could have stumbled into that phenomena. It just happened to be Java.

If you threw a bunch of shitty programmers at something simple but low-level like C or complicated but high level like Haskell, these same programmers would turn out software that would completely fail to work. Java, by protecting the programmer from the internals of a system (memory management, pointer vs. value etc.), yet still being simple to write in, lowered the bar significantly for entry into programming as a profession. Anybody can write in Java because it's procedural and easy to think in, and most of the heavy lifting is done for them and it's a matter of stringing together the right libraries.

You're right that it could've been another language besides Java, but said language would've had to have had the same intrinsic qualities as Java. I guess it could be worse and the defacto industry standard language could've gone to C#.

It's both good and bad. As programmers, it makes our day-to-day job of writing and maintaining software easier. It also makes being a programmer easier, which is bad because shitty programmers will turn out shitty software, and will do it for cheap. It devalues our profession precisely because managers know they can hire shitty programmers that will churn out a working product. And by the time any maintenance is needed on it, neither they nor the original programmers would be around to deal with the mess, so it doesn't matter.

Comment: Re:Minimum Wage (Score 1) 1093

by complete loony (#49733469) Attached to: Los Angeles Raises Minimum Wage To $15 an Hour

it doesn't raise the amount of money in the system unless more money is printed

That's not what he said.

increases the amount of money flowing in the economy

Don't confuse the stock of money, which might be sitting idle, with the flow of money. It's the difference between measuring distance or velocity.

Comment: Re:pay no attention to the man behind the curtain. (Score 1) 335

Economics, in it's current form, is not much better that Ptolemy's vision of an Earth centric universe. Sure you can add cycles to explain the observations of planets, but the paradigm is not useful for making predictions.

Economists need to learn how to model the economy as it actually is, instead of making so many simplifying (and wrong) assumptions as to make their models useless. They need to learn from fields like weather forecasting, where complex dynamics have been embraced.

Don't panic.