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Comment: Change of tune (Score 4, Insightful) 446

by inhuman_4 (#46733087) Attached to: Commenters To Dropbox CEO: Houston, We Have a Problem
I find it very amusing how the tune has changed with regards to how vote with their wallet and corporate moral character.

For the longest time the argument was "Well if you don't like company x don't buy their products!". With the implication being that if you don't actually stop, then you are just a whiner or a hypocrite. But now people really are taking their business elsewhere. The actions of a company or the people that represent a company is effecting the bottom line. Yet somehow old "vote with your wallet" is no longer acceptable. Somehow judging a company based on it's moral character is an assault on free speech, maybe even down right persecution!

For a long time people (on Slashdot especially) have been warning of the dangers of putting your data in the cloud. Of the amount of personal information that can be gleaned from your web browsing habits. That that big business is cooperating with the government (willingly or not) in a massive breach of privacy. So how and can anyone be surprised that customers demand moral character from leadership of companies to whom we are handing over so much personal information?

If you had to make a choice between companies to store YOUR personal information and your choices are: Company A with Bruce Schneier on it's board of directors, and Company B with Dick Cheney on it's board of directors. Does anyone seriously think that difference shouldn't effect the decision?

I for one have no sympathy. Yes a company has every right to alienate their customers, but customers also have every right to vote with their wallets.

Comment: Re:Simple.... Odds are even (Score 1) 167

by inhuman_4 (#46671971) Attached to: A Rock Paper Scissors Brainteaser
If you play 2/3 paper 1/3 rock. He will play 1/2 paper, 1/2 rock.

Wins for you:
Paper vs rock: 2/3 * 1/2 = 1/3 win
Rock vs scissors: 1/3 * 0 = 0 win
Scissors vs paper: 0 * 1/2 = 0 win

For him:
Paper vs rock: 1/2 * 1/3 = 1/6
Rock vs scissors: 1/2 * 0 = 0
Scissors vs paper: 0 * 2/3 = 0

Your optimal strategy (2/3 paper, 1/3 rock) vs his optimal strategy (1/2 paper, 1/2 rock), results 1/3 win not a 1/2 win.

Comment: Re:Two Games (Score 1) 167

by inhuman_4 (#46671833) Attached to: A Rock Paper Scissors Brainteaser
We know that the opponent must play rock 1/2 of the time.

If I play paper 4/6 of the time, than I should expect 1/2 of my paper to align with his rock. So 4/6 * 1/2 = 2/6 = 1/3. So I should expect to win 1/3 of the time, plus my winnings on the other combinations. That means 1/3 is the lower bound.

If you play 1/3 rock and 2/3 paper, his response will be 1/2 paper and 1/2 rock. So you are going to get 2/3 * 1/2 = 1/3 for your paper. But your 1/3 rock will never win because he will never play scissors either. But his 1/2 paper will meet your 1/3 rock, giving him 1/2 * 1/3 = 1/6 win. Putting you head by only 1/6.

This is where the two games key comes in. You and I both recognize that 2/3 paper is the right move because 1/2 of his moves will be rock. But by playing the other half as regular RPS with a win/tie/loss of 1/1/1 you can expect the win/loss to cancel out, leaving you with your 1/3 lower bound advantage.

Comment: Re:Two Games (Score 1) 167

by inhuman_4 (#46671485) Attached to: A Rock Paper Scissors Brainteaser
The opponent doesn't have the option to play anything greater than 1/2 scissors because the other 1/2 must be rock. If he uses the "all scissors" response, he can only actually do a 1/2 scissors response. So is we play it out:

1/2 scissors x 4/6 paper = 2/6 = 1/3 victory for the opponent. 1/2 scissors x 1/6 scissors is 1/12 tie. And 1/2 scissors x 1/6 rock is 1/12 lose. So the "all scissors" strategy only nets him 1/3 victory not 4/6.

Comment: Two Games (Score 3, Insightful) 167

by inhuman_4 (#46671095) Attached to: A Rock Paper Scissors Brainteaser
You should play paper 4/6 of the time, rock 1/6, and scissors 1/6 of the time.

The key (if you RFTA) is that whether or not your opponent plays rock is determined by a coin toss. So really you are playing a compound game. You are playing a coin toss and rock paper scissors (RPS). Since the coin toss determines your opponents move, you can think of it as playing 50% coin toss and 50% RPS. The RPS is a subgame of the coin toss.

Since the coin toss is the dominate game, you play with win that first. But instead of heads/tails, it is paper/other. The answer to the coin toss is a 50/50 guess of heads/tails, so the answer to the paper/other is 50% paper, 50% other.

The "other" is the RPS game. And since the answer to the RPS game is 1/3 rock, 1/3 paper, 1/3 scissors, we know what the solution to the other 50% of the game is.

So the equations are:choice = (Coin Toss) + (RPS) so: paper = 1/2 + 1/3, rock = 0 + 1/3, scissors = 0 + 1/3. Or paper = 4/6, rock = 1/6, scissors = 1/6.

Comment: Re:Still trying to wrap my head... (Score 1) 51

by inhuman_4 (#46609133) Attached to: oVirt 3.4 Means Management, VMs Can Live On the Same Machine
One big issue is that virtual machines allows for different OSes. So if you are provides a variety of services, like legacy applications for example, you consolidate them all on to one machine.

It also allows for easier testing. Say for example you need to stress test your application on some combination Red Hat, SUSE, Debian, FreeBSD, WinServer, Mac, and Solaris, or even a variety of different versions of those OSes. Putting them all in virtual machines is much simpler than re-installing or having a dedicated machine for each one. It also makes it easy to call up your test environment if a customer reports a bug.

Comment: Re:Still a ways to go (Score 1) 131

by inhuman_4 (#46394307) Attached to: Sulfur Polymers Could Enable Long-Lasting, High-Capacity Batteries
Aircraft are very sensitive to the weight. But ships are not. I wonder if it would be realistic to have a battery powered ship for cross ocean voyages. Especially for things like tankers and cargo ships. Pull into port and get hooked up with special massive power tx lines and fill up the battery.

I seem to recall that large ships are a big source of CO2 emissions. If it is possible I wonder what the trade off is in terms of costs.

Comment: Re:Idiots in power (Score 3, Interesting) 135

by inhuman_4 (#46361811) Attached to: NRC Expects Applications To Operate Reactors Beyond 60 Years
The Chalk River medical isotope issue was different though.

Everyone agrees that the regulator did its job by shutting down the plant for not meeting the once in a million years safety ratio that is the standard. However the plant was not a power plant, it was a research plant producing medical isotopes. So issue wasn't whether the ractor met the standards, it didn't. The issue was the probability of people getting injured or dying from a plant malfunction was significantly less than the probability of people dying from not getting those medical isotopes.

When presented with instructions to provide a temporary exception to the rule until other sources of the isotope could be brought online, the regulator said no. So things escalated until someone (parliament) had the authority to over rule the regulator.

She was fired for not granting the exception, even though she knew what the balance of probabilities were. Basically she was power tripping.

Comment: Re:SpaceX (Score 1) 73

by inhuman_4 (#46333463) Attached to: SpaceX Testing Landing Legs On Next Falcon9 Rocket
There isn't really anything new going on here, its just never been put togther like this before.

While NASA prefers water landings, the Soviets landed all of their equipment on the ground. So returning things to the ground isn't really that exciting. Additionally there were landing people (who are much more fragile than mechanical parts) from orbit rather than just high in the atmosphere.

And while reusable engines didn't work out that great for the Space Shuttle for various reasons. Lots of rocket engines have been used over and over on test stands on the ground. Rocket engines that can be reused isn't new tech either.

Comment: Re:Time to end the military industrial complex (Score 1) 506

by inhuman_4 (#46333371) Attached to: US War Machine Downsizing?
I don't know who told you the F-35 was an air superiority fighter but that is totally wrong.

The F-35 Joint *Strike* Fighter is a replacement deep strike aircraft. It will be filling the roll of the now retired F-117, and soon the F-16 and F-18.

Since the 70's air forces have followed the high-low model. An expensive air superiority fighter in small numbers, and a cheaper multi-purpose fighter in larger numbers. This is why the USAF has F-15s and F-16, and the Soviets had the SU-27 and MiG-29. The next generation is the F-22 for air superiority and F-35 for multipurpose.

Also the F-35 has nothing to do with the retirement of the A-10. The F-35 wasn't designed to replace the A-10 any more than the F-16 or the F-18 were designed to. The A-10 isn't a sexy plane in the air force's eyes, it's getting old, and no one made plans to replace it. So rather than admitting that they dropped the ball on CAS the air force is claiming that the F-35 will do the job.

Comment: Yes and No (Score 2) 627

by inhuman_4 (#46327457) Attached to: Does Relying On an IDE Make You a Bad Programmer?

There is nothing wrong with using and IDE, that doesn't make you a bad programmer. Relying on an IDE does make you a bad programmer. Lets face it, there is a lot of boiler plate boring crap involved in programming. Using an IDE to handle the mundane stuff makes a lot of sense. But if you can't do your job without it then you are probably not very good at your job.

Using a calculator doesn't make you bad at math. Being unable to do math without a calculator makes you bad a math.

Comment: Re:Organisational mandates (Score 3, Interesting) 82

by inhuman_4 (#46294179) Attached to: EFF Reports GHCQ and NSA Keeping Tabs On Wikileaks Visitors and Reporters

A big part of the issue is that some of these organizations shouldn't be doing any of this at all.

A big part missing the the discussion is that the NSA is a military outfit. It is part of the DoD and its commander is a serving member of the US armed forces. It is the signals intelligence branch of the US military. Their primay mission is ensure secure communications for the US command and control infastructure, and gather intelligence on foreign military powers.

How did we get from spying on the Soviet Union, to monitoring the phones of every American citizen? As a military outfit they shouldn't be operating in the the US at all. You wouldn't let soldiers patrol the streets acting like cops, so why are thay taking on tasks the rightfully belong on the hands of the FBI? The simple answer is secrecy. Whatever legal games they want to play, at the end of the day they knew that they shouldn't be doing it, so the tasked it to the DoD so they can call it a matter of national security.

Comment: Re:En Venezuela hay mucho PETROLEO... (Score 4, Insightful) 152

by inhuman_4 (#46254427) Attached to: Venezuelan Regime Censoring Twitter

Except Norway did pretty much opposite of what Venezuela did.

Norway created a state company owned company (a crown corporation for those familiar with the British system) called Statoil. Using public funds the company established itself in Norway and around the world. Once the company got established it was turned into a public stock company (NYSE: STO). The Norwegian government remains the primary shareholder, however it is a public corporation run by the private sector for profit.

Venezuela brought in foreign established firms to provide the expertise and capital to exploit the country's natural resources and to aid in the development of the national oil company. Later a more socialist government decided that they didn't like the deal anymore and nationalized the foreign owned assets into the PDVSA, a government run enterprises.

The result is that Norway's oil industry is well coordinated and on friendly terms with other governments and oil companies. And frequently engages in joint ventures with other oil companies outside of Norway. Statoil is run for profit by via private sector mechanisms providing a good return on investment for the country, and is relatively free of corruption. The country's ownership of the controlling share of the corporation is treated like a long term asset for the benefit of future generations.

Venezuela has for it's part burned bridges with everyone who had previously invested in the country. Making it hard to expand outside the country, and more importantly attract foreign investment which could provide the expertise that Venezuela lacks. The PDVSA is rife with corruption providing cushy jobs to 'friends of the family' for various political players. The ROI for the people and government of Venezuela is much lower than it should be. And rather than treating it's ownership of PDVSA as an investment (like Norway does with Statoil), they treat it like a cash cow to fund various ill conceived economic plans.

Norway acted as a sole proprietor in a free market. Venezuela acted like the post-revolution communist governments of the last century.

Comment: Re:Whats wrong with init? (Score 2) 279

by inhuman_4 (#46249513) Attached to: Ubuntu To Switch To systemd

The issue with systemd: it reeks of a solution looking for a problem.

The issue I belive is that the Linux kernel has been expanding its capabilities and the init system has not kept pace. Part of that reason is that to take advantage of Linux specific issues means breaking compatibility with other *nix systems.

Take cgroups for example. It is a Linux specific feature, and a great one at that. It can limit CPU, memory, and I/O processes not just just for one process, but for all of the processes that fork off of it. Along the way it solves the "escape by double forking" issue. For systems doing virtualization or running multiple servers it is exactly the kind of thing an admin would want for his services.

Or how about service dependancies? The sysem of A depends on B,F,K works great for all of our package managing systems, and has been for years. The is the reason upstart was adopted, the runlevel system is a very inelegant solution.

I'm not saying systemd is perfect. I really like status messages, but using a binary log file I think is a mistake. But it does provide new features that a lot of developers and admins will be able to take advantage of.

"Text processing has made it possible to right-justify any idea, even one which cannot be justified on any other grounds." -- J. Finnegan, USC.