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Comment: Something wrong with plain switches? (Score 1) 280

by jickerson (#43013619) Attached to: West Virgnia Auditor Finds Cisco Router Purchase Not Performed Legally

Pardon my ignorance, as I'm not a network-admin type in the least, but would there be something wrong with using plain gigabit ethernet switches with an optical module (or something to the effect, not sure of the terminology). Is there any future use for the system that would be hindered by using plain switches instead?

Comment: new possible storage mediums to transfer (Score 2) 442

by jickerson (#42539457) Attached to: The Trouble With 4K TV

I remember seeing articles about the use of holographic storage medium with 500 GB potential . Don't know if it will ever come around, but it would be a possible physical media source (assuming that the read speeds were fast enough)

Comment: Uniformity across the country (Score 1) 167

by jickerson (#42260273) Attached to: Engineers Use Electrical Hum To Fight Crime

If the hum is generated from imbalances between the generation and consumption of power, is there any difference in the hum across the entire grid? Or do the transmission lines transmit the current evenly across the entire grid to the point where the hum in one area is indistinguishable from a spot clear across the country?

Comment: geography/driving profile matters too (Score 1) 341

by jickerson (#41559241) Attached to: Electric Car Environmental Impact: Power Source Matters

I might be mistaken, but it seems like the driving profile of the EV user would matter as well. Consider someone who works in the middle of a metropolitan area, and lives in a small neighborhood ~10-15 miles away. If they spend the majority of their driving time in rush hour traffic, it seems like EVs would be more efficient because they don't waste as much energy when idle/stop-and-go traffic (ignoring things like A/C). Even if they were charged with power from a coal plant, they might still be more efficient. While city/highway EPA numbers work as an overall "average", the benefits of EVs would be greater for this type of driver.

Comment: Re:Trading's Too Fast When It Ceases to Mean Anyth (Score 1) 500

by jickerson (#41298727) Attached to: More Warnings About High-Frequency Trading

No, instead what's going on is someone put out a big pre-order for Microsoft stock and so the HFT guys are buying stocks at a lower price than that only to turn over and dump them almost instantly as the order actually comes through netting fractions of a penny.

Actually, this isn't what is going on. Their access to the trade flow doesn't let them see the market book (what would record the "pre-order"). Instead, they are looking for patterns in the limit orders representing large institutional traders trying to unwind their position (think mutual funds). Since these big players can't place an sell order for 10,000 shares, they break them up into smaller chunks using their own sell algos. If a HFT can identify these trades, they can jump in and buy ahead of the fund and sell to them. They are simply trying to outwit the other institutional fund's trading algorithms.

Disclaimer: I'm a finance doctoral student, and one of my colleagues actually does research into HFT using proprietary data

Comment: Don' really see the big deal (Score 0) 188

by jickerson (#41267363) Attached to: FBI Launches $1 Billion Nationwide Face Recognition System
Firstly, this post is in no way an attempt to troll. I've seen a lot of backlash for the CCTV images used in the UK, etc, but don't really get the argument behind this. I fall more in the, "if you didn't do anything wrong you have nothing to worry about" camp. I understand that people have civil rights, but how is being put into an indexed database really violating your rights? The FBI already has the right to bring anyone in for questioning, so why is it unreasonable to be able to bring someone in if their image pops in a search? If an agent saw a criminal act captured on camera, and then passed someone on the street who matched the visual description, i'd imagine they'd bring them in for questioning as well. We already have a database for convicted criminals. Why should a person's image not be included in the search if this is the first crime they have committed? And for the record, I support the right to bear arms, etc. I just think that if this is able to catch one person who is about to become a repeat offender, then i'd gladly waive my right to keep my photo private in exchange for that one victim being spared.

Comment: Decreasing Marginal Benefit (Score 1) 813

by jickerson (#41141421) Attached to: How Long Do You Want To Live?
It amazes me that this question is even being asked when there are 8 African countries whose life expectancy is less than 45 years of age. Personally, I'd imagine that by the time I'm 80, I'd have gotten enough enjoyment out of life. Beyond that, I'd also think that the joy i'd get out of helping someone go from 45 years to 60-80 years would be greater than the marginal enjoyment of extending my own life to 120 years.

Comment: Options (Score 1) 601

by jickerson (#41137443) Attached to: Would You Pay an Internet Broadband Tax?
"Would you pay it?" I hate to be a pessimist but it's not like we have a huge choice. If it does become a reality, then you either pay it or don't have broadband (and I have a feeling that the marginal benefit from broadband exceeds the $1-2 extra a month for the tax). The real question is: "Is this a big enough deal for you to support a different representative who opposes the tax (if your current guy supports it)." Personally, when choosing a candidate, there are at least 50 other topics that I'd consider before their support/opposition to this tax.

You know, Callahan's is a peaceable bar, but if you ask that dog what his favorite formatter is, and he says "roff! roff!", well, I'll just have to...