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Comment: Re:Obviously (Score 2) 174

by fyngyrz (#49819479) Attached to: Fuel Free Spacecrafts Using Graphene

I wonder if they've weighed the sponges. One possibility is that the sponges are deteriorating in a particular direction, thus engaging in conventional "stuff out one end makes you go the other way" propulsion. And also becoming traditional "will get used up" style fuel in the process. :)

Though it'd be all kinds of awesome if it was creating coherent motion out of energy delivered by photons without wearing out. Now *that* could be a space drive.

Comment: 20% to 40% ??? No. Just no. (Score 5, Insightful) 582

by fyngyrz (#49793209) Attached to: How Tesla Batteries Will Force Home Wiring To Go Low Voltage

To avoid the 20% to 40% power loss when converting from DC to AC

...they're doing it wrong. DC to AC conversion is easily achieved in the high 90% range. For instance, a typical solar inverter is around 95% efficient. And you can do better, it just gets more expensive (although that's a one-time cost, whereas energy loss is a constant concern.)

Someone is pushing some other agenda here.

Comment: Still awesome (Score 1) 416

by fyngyrz (#49793145) Attached to: What AI Experts Think About the Existential Risk of AI

Sure. Did it to myself decades ago. Offspring of my genetic line aren't of the least bit of interest to me; perfectly happy raising kids of other birth who needed parents (5 so far, mostly excellent results.) Plus that whole "all the bareback sex with my SO we want, any time" thing is awesome.

Which, again, is just how I approach feline guardianship. Don't need new kittens from them. Plenty of kittens out there that need to own their own human.

Comment: Rather a very poor job. :-( (Score 1) 96

by Terje Mathisen (#49789387) Attached to: Making the World's Largest Panoramic Photo

I have made many, many panoramas, but none in the multi-gigapixel range, so I realize that they had a very tough stitching job, but even so: This was a pretty bad job!

All the central snow fields look like the result of randomly placed images: With a motorized pano head they should have been able to locate each image pretty accurately even before they started the SIFT runs to look for matching key points (which can be hard in a blue sky or on white snow).

More problematic is the fact that they must have done the actual stitching pretty much without proper blending from one image to the next:

Within the first minute of zooming around in the image I stumbled across a perfectly straight line with totally different exposure/lighting on each side, giving an almost black/white boundary that screams "This isn't natural!".

The proper way to blend such images is to use a multi-spectral approach: Low frequency information (like average light level) is blended across the entire overlap, while higher frequencies use narrower and narrower bands. Doing it this way means that even if one image had a clear blue sky and the next was taken when the sun was hidden by a cloud, the overlap is nearly perfect.


Comment: Yeah, no. (Score 3, Insightful) 416

by fyngyrz (#49765031) Attached to: What AI Experts Think About the Existential Risk of AI

Except that the opinion of people like Stephen Hawking, Bill Gates and Elon Musk is definitely worth more than any "majority" thinking differently.

Nosense. That's just hero worship mentality. Very much like listening to Barbara Streisand quack about her favorite obsessions.

Bill Gates' opinion is worth more than the average person's when it comes to running Microsoft. Elon Musk's opinion is worth more than the average person's when building Teslas and the like. Neither one of them (nor anyone else, for that matter) has anything but the known behavior of the only high intelligence we've ever met to go on (that's us, of course.) So it's purest guesswork, completely blind specuation. It definitely isn't a careful, measured evaluation. Because there's nothing to evaluate!

And while I'm not inclined to draw a conclusion from this, it is interesting that we've had quite a few very high intelligences in our society over time. None of them have posed an "existential crisis" for the the planet, the the human race, or my cats. Smart people tend ot have better things to do than annoy others... also, they can anticipate consequences. Will this apply to "very smart machines"? Your guess (might be) as good as mine. It's almost certainly better than Musk's or Gates', since we know they were clueless enough to speak out definitively on a subject they don't (can't) know anything about. Hawking likewise, didn't mean to leave him out.

Within the context of our recorded history, it's not the really smart ones that usually cause us trouble. It's the moderately intelligent fucktards who gravitate to power. [stares off in the general direction of Washington] (I know, I've giving some of them more credit than they deserve.)

Comment: Nash just got the Abel price! (Score 5, Informative) 176

Just 5 days ago, John F. Nash and Louis Nirenberg got the Abel price in a ceremony in Oslo:

With a diploma handed over by the Norwegian King Harald and a NOK 6M prize this is the closest thing math has to a Nobel prize.

Unlike the Fields Medal there is no age limit, so just like the Nobel prizes it tends to be given out at a later date, for work that has proven itself to be really outstanding.


Comment: Re:That's recklessly endangering America! (Score 1) 135

by fyngyrz (#49761711) Attached to: NSA-Reform Bill Fails In US Senate

You are crazy. Here is an example of the democratic process working, yet you desperately have to search for some conspiracy theory to continue your irrational hatred of the USA.

No. It's an example of a republic not working. What history books tend to call "decline and fall" when it's happened in the past. It is what happens when governments completely lose sight of, and concern with, and respect for, the principles that brought them into being.

This is real life, not a Tom Clancy novel.

Oh, we know. In Clancy's works the US TLAs are the good guys. That's not been the case for decades now.

BYTE editors are people who separate the wheat from the chaff, and then carefully print the chaff.