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Comment: Re:This is clearly futile... (Score 1) 129

by swillden (#48475045) Attached to: Google Told To Expand Right To Be Forgotten

The Internet is full of half-truths and outright lies. Search engines do not deliver results based on the truth value of sites, but on popularity, page ranking and such.

That has nothing to do with this. If someone has put lies about you up on a news site, you can and should be able to get that information taken down at the source. In fact, dealing with defamatory writing is something we figured out how to do long ago. It's called "libel" and there are all sorts of laws around it.

The "right to be forgotten" isn't about taking down false or misleading information. It's about suppressing accurate but unpleasant truth.

Comment: Re:Alive and gobbling (Score 1) 81

by Rei (#48473053) Attached to: I prefer my turkey ...

Surprised you haven't gotten any "but animals eat meat!" comments.

Animals also commit petty murder and mass rape. I like to think that we have the intelligence to choose to not have to imitate the behavior of other animals and decide our own path. And fortunately, we have a digestive system which allows us to make that choice when it comes to our diet.

Comment: Re:What's with turkey anyway (Score 1) 81

by Rei (#48473045) Attached to: I prefer my turkey ...

Swans can literally kill people - a guy died just a couple years ago when swans attacked his boat and then kept attacking him while he tried to swim to shore, until he drowned. More common though are things like bruises (up to and including black eyes), scratches, and skin-puncturing bites. A google image search for swan attack shows how they don't mess around when they feel threatene (there's even pictures of one attacking a full-grown horse)

Comment: Re:What's with turkey anyway (Score 2) 81

by Rei (#48473019) Attached to: I prefer my turkey ...

It's not all that distant of a relative of chickens, actually - it's in the same family (but a different subfamily). It's kind of wierd that one family (Phasianidae) has almost all of the commonly consumed poultry - chicken, turkey, grouse, quail, pheasant, peafowl, guineafowl, etc. Go up to the order level and you find more (mostly regionally popular) game fowl, like ptarmigan. And once you hit the superorder level, you get the water fowl like ducks, geese, and swans. I can't even think of any other poultry species. There's lots of Aves clades, subclasses, and infraclasses, but apparently the species that people find make good eating are rather clustered together.

Comment: Re:Niche energy (Score 1) 86

by Rei (#48471461) Attached to: WaveNET – the Floating, Flexible Wave Energy Generator

A lot of companies are involved in a lot of renewables tech research. That doesn't mean that any particular one is going to be profitable. The vast majority are going to be big failures.

Wave power's track record so far has been subpar to say the least. And looking at their diagrams, I can't imagine that they're not headed straight for the same fate. Even if we assume that their numbers aren't overly optimistic, their design looks like it would involve several times more steel per nameplate capacity than a wind turbine tower. And they're operating in a much harsher environment. No rotors, but they're dealing with major hydraulic pumping instead. It just doesn't look like a winner to me.

If it was my job to have a go at wave power, I can't imagine going for anything involving large amounts of structural steel or hydraulic pumping; I'd keep it simple and just go for a grid of cables (potentially a high tensile strength UV-resistant plastic), anchored at the edges to keep tension up across the whole grid, with the only slack available involving the grid pulling on regularly spaced springloaded reels (the rotation thereof generating electricity), with any combination of floats, drag chutes and weighs/anchors to cause the needed tug from the movement of water. No pumps, no hydraulic fluid, no large compressive-loaded structures, just a tensile structure that would be (proportionally) lightweight and easy to deploy.

But hey, it's not my industry ;)

Comment: Re:BLUE ray (Score 1) 174

by swillden (#48470725) Attached to: Jackie Chan Discs Help Boost Solar Panel Efficiency

removed the top plastic layer, exposing the recording medium beneath; cast a mold of the quasi-random pattern; and then used the mold to create a photovoltaic cell with the same pattern

So you use your expensive photo lithography equipment to create a master, make as many molds from that as you like, and then create the photovoltaic cells from those. The mass production of BD-ROM discs is irrelevant, it just makes your master cheap, but when you're making 10,000s of cells the cost of the master is unimportant.

Sure, but the cost is very relevant when you're doing research. This Blu-Ray disc experiment demonstrates that the theoretical work done previously will probably work as well as the theory predicts.

Comment: Why is encryption not standard? (Score 1) 89

by Thagg (#48467113) Attached to: New Snowden Docs Show GCHQ Paid Telcos For Cable Taps

It's astonishing that all communication is not encrypted. If you are sharing information over a common carrier, you should expect that somebody is going to be grabbing and examining the bytes.

So, somehow, it is just not the norm to encrypt communication. One reason might be that during the eighties and nineties as the internet was going wide, ITAR and patents on systems like RSA made people and companies nervous and unwilling to go there; that was definitely a missed opportunity.

Perhaps another problem is that there's no money to be made in encryption; and there are real (small, but real) costs in establishing it.

Still, though...

Why is there no encrypted "WhatsApp"? It would not be hard, it would be trivial to deliver through Google Play, and there would be a immediate market. If the connections were truly peer-to-peer, the infrastructure to support it would be almost zero.

How has the world convinced people not to encrypt all communication?

Let's organize this thing and take all the fun out of it.