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Comment Re:That would be beyond stupid (Score 1) 154

Definitely NO. Answer is in the same same piece of text:


It's very easy to add a little certificate of 'taking responsibility', or add it as an extra clause at the end of the license. It won't change the GPL. However... you must find a manufacturer of software for autonomously driving vehicles willing to provide their sources under a GPL license.

Comment Re:Liberal excuse to invade privacy (Score 1) 284

How does it lead to the further degradation of the privacy of the citizens?

Like how Goolge Ads lead to the further degradation of the privacy of the citizens?


Like how mass surveillance of the NSA (as explained by E. Snowden) lead to the further degradation of the privacy of the citizens?

There is a difference, you know and I consider the former one much more benign than the latter. And a once in 5 year census, properly executed, orders of magnitudes less privacy invading than even Google Ads. I expect, from a country like Canada, they are very careful about privacy violations due to government material. In the country I live (Netherlands), we have an independent bureau for these kinds of issues (the Dutch Data Protection Authority / College Bescherming Persoonsgegevens) every part of government (and commerce, for that matter) has to give accountability to when they store privacy sensitive data.

Also, Google Ads have distinct primary and secondary benefits (personalized ads instead of junk you never would care about and 'free' services like google search and gmail) as the census should have (better government based on facts rather than fiction).
Now if we only had journalism that would actually criticize government when they fail to make decisions by using proper data and rational thinking... Where is free speech when you need it?

Comment Re:Census value (Score 1) 284

btw, what census evidence was used to decide that ending the war on drugs would be worthwhile?

Maybe there were so many Canadians filling 'drug dealer' as their occupation (2006 census, question 42), that the government decided the extra income tax from legalizing that profession would benefit them more than the costs to society associated with drug (ab-)use. ;)

I base some things on *ideals*

Of course you should. But it IS like religion and science. We do want to make rational decisions about things when entire populations are involved. The alternative has historically proven to be often... very unpleasant.

Comment Re:A sample of the actual 61-question census (Score 4, Informative) 284

Ehmm RTFF much?... It's 40 pages to fill in per 5 persons (if more than 5 persons live on the same address, you have to call in for a supplemental form). Which would make it about 8 pages per person. Roughly half of the questions should be skipped for persons aged below 15 and most questions are either 'mark the box' or writing names or amounts. It's not like you have to write a 40 page essay.... Questions are about:

-Inquiring the number of persons residential at the dwelling (the form gives detailed information about who to include and who not).
-Some basic information about each of these persons (Name, DoB, sex, marital status and relationships).
-Ethnic background of each person and language capabilities, detailed.
-Level of education and the type and amount of labour performed by each person over 15. Includes voluntary and unpaid labour (like household chores).
-The state and ownership situation of the dwelling the form is sent to.

Oh, and there is a page for comments.

Except for that last page, everything in the form seems to me to be very relevant for government decision making. At least, and I am generalizing here, if I'm well enough informed about what 'usual Canadians' consider proper government decision making. I'm Dutch, so I do not know the details, but I do read about what's going on in other countries than my own and that includes what populations usually expect from their governments.
Then, again, I can understand why some questions on that form would be highly objectionable to 'usual U.S. Americans'. And I might be wrong but most comments I see here are not those of Canadians... The impression I usually get from the U.S. is that you don't like to let your government meddle in affairs like basic health care, integration of minorities, housing regulations, public welfare or anything that touches income (taxes, minimum wage). And that's what many questions in that census are about. So, I'm not surprised I see so many negative comments here...

Comment Re:No (Score 1) 563

A post-scarcity society may be something in reach in a few generations... but some technological (start with abundant energy - controlled fusion) and social break-throughs (the notion that there may not be enough work available to roughly provide every work-able individual with a meaningful job which may lead to things like a basic income) have to happen first... Also, deliberately creating scarcity on a large scale for personal gain should become a crime. One severely punishable by that... like, on the same level as genocide... And it should include a lengthy trial at a world court.

If all 'common' needs (food, housing, security, connectivity, some entertainment... call it bread-and-games if you like) are provided for, for most people, the need for money will start to fade and so will the notion of it. Money will be something only the very rich care about. Either because they like the pissing contest or they want to execute a 'larger than life' goal.
For the average person, the ability to barter will no longer be 'money', but the skills you can bring a team that wants to create something 'larger than life'. Those teams can be cooperations of average individuals - they don't have to be kick-started by some very rich, but it may help ... initially. Competition between teams will be based on what value they can bring to someone having the skills the team wants. Someone not happy with the 'working conditions' can always take the 'nuclear' option. "I think I go live in a cave for a while - sodd off unless you bring me a better offer". For those teams the 'human capital' they posses will be their most important asset (energy is plentiful, so materials are plenty as well (through recycling or mass-creation) and as such, of low value). Liquidating such teams will not benefit other teams as much unless their goals are very similar. This will bring natural monopolies - but who cares at such a point? Competition will be a lot less...

I think, when you look at Star Trek, there are many things individuals can't 'just' lay their hands on, in it. But most people don't care much. Transporter credits is one explicitly mentioned.
They are all things an individual couldn't be expected to create within their own means, even if they would have worked for it their whole lives - on their own. Everything material an individual needs to survive can be provided for - everything else they have to 'work' for. They band together and build something larger than what one individual can do. That's how they must have been able to do the things they do in the series. Plenty of people working towards, what seem to be, insurmountable goals, focussing on what they can do best because all their material needs, and quite some social needs are utterly satisfactory provided for.

So, if you want to do something really interesting (with your life, in a post-scarcity society, within your lifetime), you take up an education (or educate yourself up to a point to get noticed), then apply for that job that may get you there. Like one involving boarding an interstellar space-ship. If your dream is to 'explore new worlds', you make certain to make yourself useful there. For the crew 'they' pick motivated people (even if the motivation is caused by a lost bar fight and a stern speech). Not the lazy bums that just want to go sight-seeing. Where 'they' are the people that banded together to realize something bigger than life in the first place.

It's all quite logical.

Comment Re:Reason why it's cheaper (Score 1) 421

Unfortunately, scaling down current designs of power generating systems using nuclear fission will result in an exponential loss in efficiency, or worse. When they are too small, power generation isn't even possible because you need a critical mass in most systems (you need to have enough neutron-fission material interaction to keep a nuclear chain reaction going and when the neutrons are 'going fast' you need a barrier first, most commonly a layer of water, to slow them down enough to split new atoms). For 'small' nuclear power plants you need completely different designs and possible even have to search for other fission processes that can scale down to a size that local power plants are possible. There are some fission processes that can produce small nuclear power plants but those currently known are highly inefficient and/or use very dangerous materials . For example: the heat produced by natural plutonium decay is used in many solar system scale traveling space craft to produce heat and power. There is a reason it's used in those space craft, not in local power plants.

Also there is nuclear fusion. Ever wondered why only the 'hot' variant is scientifically proven to provide a surplus of energy and the first fusion test reactor to be built, designed to generate a surplus of power is a global project and, well, quite ... humongous? It isn't because the international scientific community wanted a pork project. I can tell you that...

Comment Re:It's all fun and games... (Score 2) 61

Apparently we have a statistically incorrect over-abundance of mature players in the region I play then...
Yes, I know what you mean with the unsavoury kind of 'players'. However, if said people pop up here and begin ruining the gaming experience for 'the ****** smurfs/frogs' because of "MUST DO WAR EXPLICITLY" it won't take long before they are shunned by both sides. May take a bit longer if said player was more of a regular. We had one on the opposite faction becoming quite dictatorial in handling the area he lived in, also to his fellow team-mates, making demands to do this or that. Let's say he now has to do all the legwork himself if he wants to have any chance of a lvl5+ portal near him.

After some huffing and puffing, things cool down and we soon go back to our friendly games of capture, recapture, sneaky guardians, P8's, either naturally developing or by planned event (and associated game of interception) and a city/region enveloping field once every few months. When sides meet there is a nice talk 'about the weather', followed by some exchange of neutral in-game topics (game changes from the latest updates, that sort of stuff), some questions about unexpected activity of regular/long-time players everyone in the area know about but suddenly retired or re-entered the field, sometimes talk about immature players mentioned earlier... and then we go on our merry way.

Comment Re:They forgot something (Score 5, Insightful) 141

Possibly these $50 phones will get better security update support than most $500 phones-with-hardware-vendor-goo. Simply because the operating system on these will be provided directly by the operating system manufacturer (Google) and by contract no vendor-goo will be allowed.

My phone got pretty much every update between 4.0 and <current release> and I expect to receive updates promptly for quite some years to come. By the way (if you didn't get enough hints), this phone (and my phone of choice) is a Nexus...

There is only one other significant party in the smartphone market that has the same edge... but the phones they make are too locked down for my personal taste. So I only use those when I have to... at work for testing purposes. (I write app software for both iOS and Android.)

Comment Re:Why not have someone do it for you? (Score 4, Insightful) 114

Why? We're talking about Linux drivers here. Why not let the open source community write optimization profiles? Yes, you (AMD) have (has) to make some sort of interface and some documentation for it.
But the beauty is, now the community is selecting the best options for applications, doing their own testing which, with my limited knowledge, for AMD seems to be a very time and resource (paid testers) intensive process. Which is why it's lagging behind, for the Linux drivers, in the first place. Of course only software that's used by community members actually wanting to put time in creating these profiles, will eventually have good profiles. Like every other open source project. It will only improve if there are community members willing to put time/effort in it. And maybe, if you open up this process, game developers wanting their games to have a solid performance on AMD cards will write their own profiles.
Today nobody can optimize graphics performance beyond the usual resolution/AA/shader toggles on a per-application basis, except for a hand full of inside developers. And we know of some 'AAA' games coded so badly they are virtually unplayable without serious driver 'tweeks'. Why not give the open source community the possibility to optimize the games they think are worth it?

As with all open source software, it only gets better. Unless no-one cares. But then... who cares?

Comment Re:If it sounds too good to be true (Score 1) 243

NiCd starts at 1.2V. But nobody (should be) use(ing) those any-more. My experience is that most good NiMH cells start at 1.4-1.5V and maintain 1.25V during most of their in-use-time.

It shouldn't be too hard to switch on the boost circuit this Batteriser supposedly has, only when a reasonable current is drawn by the device. A current sensing circuit should not add that many components. That should prevent the Batteriser from drawing power to keep the boost circuit running when the device is switched off...

-Unfortunately I'm unable to show you the ASCII art I had made... So here is a description of it:
Main circuit, in series: +bat --[>|-- [R2] - device - -bat (ground).
Booster circuit, 4 leads: on both sides of the diode, ground and Current detection sense input.
Current detection circuit, 3 leads: on both sides of R2 and Current detection sense output.

Something like this (just a rough idea. I'm a radio amateur, not an electronics engineer): R2 is very small and in series with the device (and the battery). Current is sensed over R2. A diode (pref. a low drop one) maintains most of the original battery voltage over device as long as little current is drawn. When boost circuit kicks in, voltage is boosted, the diode prevents the surplus voltage from running back to the input of the boost circuit. Drawback, R2 will dissipate some energy and its resistance depends on how sensitive you can make your current detection circuit. Also, the current detection circuit itself may use some energy but if devices with a 'soft' standby can be battery powered and drain the battery in a matter of multiple years instead of days (I'm looking at calculators and those small bike LED-lights), so can this Batteriser.

There is only one sort of device I can think of which may not be able to deal with this. I know some devices that have a stand-by current in the micro-ampere range that still do need a rather high supply voltage, else they reset, restart, draw lots of current while restarting and then go back into stand-by. If the booster circuit shuts down while they are in standby, it would mean and endless cycle of restarts, draining the battery even faster. Of course those devices already would drain the battery faster in the original situation. When the battery voltage would become low the first time, the device resets. Then because of the internal resistance of the battery, the voltage would drop even more by the current drawn by the start-up sequence.... resulting in a reset ... rinse and repeat. A boost circuit should have a capacitor at the device side of things (if only to smooth out the high frequency noise from the boosting). If you can make it rather large (in capacity) and have a voltage sense circuit over it that turns on the boost circuit on for a bit if the voltage drops under, let's say 1.4 volt, maybe you can remedy that problem. But how much room is there for a supercap in such a small device as the Batteriser?

Comment Re:No morning coffee yet (Score 3, Informative) 76

In a floppy disk drive there is a stepper motor which drive the read/write heads. That mechanism is used in normal operation to select the correct track/cylinder to read from/write to (a floppy drive is much like a modern hard disk drive in that respect, except the information density is way less and the 'disks' are of course portable).
In the instance of this musical instrument/organ it's 'abused' by letting the stepper motor step with the frequency of the tone you want to play. The friction between the read/write heads and the rails they are gliding over makes the whole floppy housing vibrate a bit with the selected frequency. The housing acts as a resonance box and the vibration is transferred to the air where it produces sound waves in a frequency (the same the stepper motor vibrates with), you can hear.
Because the stepper motor doesn't rotate smoothly but in steps (hence its name) the produced sound is rather 'sharp', 'blocky', or whatever you may call it (I have some difficulty here finding the correct musical jargon - English is not my native language). There are a lot of higher harmonics in it.
Maybe if you saw the video in the original article, you noticed some random gaps in some of the notes played, where, if you knew the pieces played (they are rather popular numbers so I'll assume you know at least some of them), you would expect the note to continue. Those are caused because the head has reached the end of the track and now has to reverse (and so does the rotation direction of the stepper motor). That takes a moment in which no 'music' can be played.

Comment Re:Make a federal case out of it - learn this term (Score 4, Interesting) 42

I already think of myself as European. I'm Dutch as well, by the way. There are many more who think the same. There are also quite some people who do not. European integration is already at work for at least half a century. With mixed results, I have to admit... but one thing it did do right; 1945 was the last year there was an active war between European nations (there has been quite an ugly civil war (Yugoslavia) and Russia doesn't seem to play nice, recently. But France, Germany and the U.K. seem to have lost their imperial aspirations). Let's hope people are smart enough to see the benefits and be wary of things that should be better - and keep voting accordingly.

Comment Re:Looks like a shipping container, with a roof (Score 1) 71

Well ... it should weigh less than 100 KG (200 pounds?)... I don't know of any shipping containers that light. The smallest 'common' shipping container according to the wikipedia website (20') weighs at least 22 times as much. And it should handle heat/cold a lot better than a big metal box.

To me it rather looks like other 'usual' temporary housing things. Those white houses they set up at big outdoor events. The only one that comes into mind close where I live, where I've seen them and an event with (quite) some international renown are the yearly 4-day marches (in Nijmegen, the Netherlands). They have a number of those houses (a big one and some smaller ones) at the start/finish site, for example where medical personnel can treat people with feet problems caused by the long walk. Only, those are not insulated at all... just made out of white plastic segments and a sheet roof.

Comment Re:Obvious Usefulness (Score 1) 157

Only... we already have kind of natural light houses for galactic-scale navigation already. In multiple types even.
Pulsars (fast spinning neutron stars) are the first that come to mind. Their pulsating frequency seems to be very stable which makes them easily recognizable and distinguishable. There are multiple in our own galaxy (of 14 of them, their characteristics were depicted on the Pioneer Space Probe plaque. One of 'our' early 'Hello, aliens' attempts). They should be perfect for intra-galactic travel. Pulsars have also been observed in other galaxies but for inter-galactic travel I would rather use... Quasars.
Quasars are like 'very distant' radio beacons. With 'very distant' I realy mean 'very distant'. The scientific consensus is, quasars are compact regions in the center of massive galaxies surrounding a central supermassive black hole. The signal they emit comes from the perpendicular jet of energy released as matter falls into the super massive black hole from its accretion disk. The emission is extremely red-shifted which makes them for us, 'light up' heavy in the radiofrequent part of the spectrum and gives us the impression of them being that 'very distant'. Their position shouldn't move a lot, while you travel to your vacation home in the Small Magellanic Cloud.

Comment Re:Because capitalism, idiots. (Score 5, Interesting) 245

This (for quite a part) USED to be government work. Half/3 quarters of a a century ago, at least. Research, also into medicine, was university sponsored work and universities mainly got sponsored by government (at least in large swaths of Europe.... don't know how it was in the '50's/60's/70's in the U.S.A.) However in, 'first world' nations, those that actually 'have/had' resources to develop new drugs, things got privatized, subsidies got cut down because government spending had to be cut down because of .... because Republican/Liberals/howeveryouwanttonameit. Result: Drugs are left to the market and so only what the market sees as profitable gets developed.

Perfect, if you really like it that way, and according to election results, a lot of people in the developed nations think it's all roses (pun intended).
I'm not someone wanting everything and our lives state owned but I do vote socialist. Just because I see, time and again (and I'm not even fourty...), things the free market can not solve. Even in a 'perfect' capitalist system. Which, I'm afraid, we have not one of, in this world.

Public transport, Medicine, Communications/utilities/transportation infrastructure (emphasis on infrastructure, not services), Fundamental research/sciences, Nature development...
Some things you should do as a community, others you should leave to the free market.

And be damned, pay your f*cking taxes, all of you! Also the rich. Yes, I'm looking to you too. You should get enjoyment from living in a country where things are arranged properly. Your investments are worth double if you don't have to fear the troubles that come when a significant part of your fellow human beings live below the poverty line. Your spending into security should be insignificant in a well managed nation... How much extra does that dwelling in a gated community cost you? Talk about living in a cage...

Programmers used to batch environments may find it hard to live without giant listings; we would find it hard to use them. -- D.M. Ritchie