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Comment: Re:Old news. (Score 1) 281

by beakerMeep (#48644221) Attached to: Study: Red Light Cameras Don't Improve Safety

The federal guidelines are too short for yellow lights. And if all it took to make things safer was to lengthen the yellow, why do we need to trade once accident for another? What kind of justification is that? "It's less severe an injury!"

Given the way people actually drive, why not just increase the yellow?

Comment: Re:Clapper (Score 1) 230

by beakerMeep (#48631751) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Can I Really Do With a Smart Watch?

It can work the other way around too -- if you get too far from your phone, it goes into pin/password lock mode. But if it is near a trusted bluetooth device, easily swipe to open. Works with any bluetooth (pebble, moto 360, your car) and Moto X 2013/2014 and Android 5+ devices. I assume iPhone has a similar feature.

Comment: Re:The Earth is connected (Score 1) 70

by blue trane (#48630743) Attached to: Terrestrial Gamma Ray Bursts Very Common

The first 20% or so is axioms and suppositions and assumptions. If you don't agree with those, the rest comes tumbling down. Conservation laws, for example, are philosophy, not science. Dark energy violates conservation, so does the Big Bang itself, and conservation is not needed in General Relativity.

Earth

Last Three Years the Quietest For Tornadoes Ever 187

Posted by timothy
from the always-calm-before-a-storm dept.
schwit1 writes The uncertainty of science: 2014 caps the quietest three year period for tornadoes on record, and scientists really don't understand why. "Harold Brooks, a meteorologist with the National Severe Storms Laboratory in Norman, Okla., said there's no consistent reason for the three-year lull — the calmest stretch since a similar quiet period in the late 1980s — because weather patterns have varied significantly from year to year. While 2012 tornado activity was likely suppressed by the warm, dry conditions in the spring, 2013 was on the cool side for much of the prime storm season before cranking up briefly in late May, especially in Oklahoma, SPC meteorologist Greg Carbin said. Then, activity quickly quieted for the summer of 2013."
Canada

Canada Waives Own Rules, Helps Microsoft Avoid US Visa Problems 122

Posted by timothy
from the alle-menschen-sind-auslaender-fast-ueberall dept.
Freshly Exhumed writes Citizenship and Immigration Canada has granted an unprecedented exemption to Microsoft that will allow the company to bring in an unspecified number of temporary foreign workers as trainees without first looking for Canadians to fill the jobs. No other company in any other field has been granted such an exemption, and it does not fall within any of the other categories where exemptions are normally given, according to a source familiar with process, effectively creating a new category: the Microsoft Exemption. Microsoft Canada did not immediately respond to questions about the deal, but in an interview earlier this year with Bloomberg Businessweek, Karen Jones, Microsoft's deputy general counsel, said the deal will allow Microsoft to bypass stricter U.S. rules on visas for foreign workers. The entire issue of temporary foreign workers has been as blisteringly hot a topic across Canada as it has been in the USA.

Comment: Re:The thermodynamics explanation is circular (Score 1) 107

by blue trane (#48558721) Attached to: 2 Futures Can Explain Time's Mysterious Past

By that definition, the hard drive on a computer increases in entropy when they make bigger ones. But we want more entropy then, because we can store what we choose on it. We don't have to limit ourselves to the disordered states.

So the identification of entropy with "everything falls apart" is misleading. More entropy serves us in many cases: a zipped file has less entropy than the uncompressed version, but we can't read the zipped version. In computational linguistics, maximum entropy models are useful.

Just because there's a possibility of more "disordered" states doesn't mean we have to choose them.

Comment: Re:"This problem of freeriders is something... (Score 1) 205

by blue trane (#48552409) Attached to: The Failed Economics of Our Software Commons

The private sector understands the alchemy of money creation, and creates at least an order of magnitude more money than governments do. The BIS reports that $76 trillion in OTC derivatives were created out of thin air by private entitites in 2013 alone. There is plenty of room for government to create the money for a basic income.

"The identical is equal to itself, since it is different." -- Franco Spisani

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