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Comment You must be joking (Score 3, Insightful) 414

I am sorry but can I just say:

  BufferedReader bufferedReader = new BufferedReader(new InputStreamReader(;
  input = bufferedReader.readLine();
  number = Integer.parseInt(input);

In Pascal (1960's) you could just do something like:
integer number;

See if the compiler knows number is an integer do I really have to tell it to create a stream and parse it as an int? seriously?
Java is an abomination.

Comment Re:I had something similar done about 10 years ago (Score 2) 357

I remember lots but most of it never happened. Impossible to tell the real from the imaginary. Lots of (really) intense dreams that were very unpleasant. However those would almost certainly have happened afterwards while I was unconscious not while I was on the operating table. They say that after a week in ICU you go a bit insane. "ICU psychosis" is what it is called. Hallucinations were very common, I could not tell the difference between when I was dreaming and when I was awake.
A bit like nightmare on elm street.

Could have been worse the guy next to me and the one across from me died (painfully)

Comment Re:I had something similar done about 10 years ago (Score 1) 357

Not quite.
I was unconscious for about three weeks (maybe more), still not sure how long, never checked the dates.
I would occasionally be "self aware" (but unable to sense anything external) I presume when they were changing medication or trying out different stuff to see if I could be woken but then I would kinda disappear again. Had a few intense dreams not sure how long they lasted or what order they occurred in. They were mostly unpleasant, I presume my brain was trying to make sense of what was happening to my body. Then I woke up but still heavily drugged and hallucinating (still unpleasant)

Comment I had something similar done about 10 years ago (Score 5, Interesting) 357

I had something similar done about 10 years ago. It was a bit experimental at the time and they told me I was very probably going to die during surgery and if I did not die I would prob. have brain damage and/or organ failure but without the surgery I would be dead in hours. They cooled down my body and then removed all my blood, there was no saline replacement. I was dead for about 10 minutes and apart from some problems reanimating me it worked out OK (there were some problems,I spent a month afterwards in a medically induced coma and had to have further work done repairing some damage caused during surgery). It was considered a major success at the time.

A bit scary to be told that you have about 30 minutes to live. Last thing I remember is the anesthetist putting a line in and thinking that once he injected the anesthetic I was going to die.

Comment not an exclusive irish problem (Score 1) 335

I would say I am embarrassed to be Irish but I am not. Dumb asses are spread pretty evenly throughout the world. This one just happens to be Irish. He displays the intellectual rigor I have come to expect from our politicians. Badly educated and unthinking. Nothing new here.

I do fear for the future however.

Comment Re:Not as exciting as it used to be (Score 1) 57

The things we can do now adays in medicine are shocking...

The article claims the thing can last "up to 13 years" before having to be replaced.

In the past, we used Pu-238 RTGs called "Plutonium cells", and the pacemakers never had to be replaced.

I guess this step backwards, towards treating pacemakers as a treatment, rather than a cure, guarantees a recurring revenue stream. One wonders, given the industry that surrounds it, whether we will ever get a cure for anything that started out with just a treatment, such as diabetes, when there's so much money tied up in "recurring revenue streams" and so little in "pay for it once". The whole SAS field itself is based on it.

The problem with the plutonium cells was that when you died you had to be buried as nuclear waste (or so I was told).

Comment Re:It's the future (Score 2) 182

It's the future and whining about it is no different than whining about the advent of the rifle or the machine gun or the bow. Your taking the fight away from the human being through a layer of abstraction to keep your soldier alive. The layer of abstraction in this case happens to be a robot, once upon a time it was a gun or a bow.

The people complaining about this are really no different than the Luddites that think warfare should be conduced hand to hand with swords and maces. They wont be satisfied unless their own soldiers are getting killed on the battlefield too. Technology advances whether you want it to or not. Change and human nature are the only things that stay the same.

The machine gun was only a good invention if it was not pointing at you. It helped destroy many cultures, enabled genocide in the name of "civilization" and allowed the west (us) to basically steal land and resources from other people - something from which they have not recovered as yet.
Any technology that tips the balance of power decisively in favour of one group will not stop war, it will ensure war (albeit a quick and bloody one).

Something that allows one side to fight a war without any cost will, I think, result in "bad" things happening.

And do not assume that you will always be at the safe end of this machinery.


"I never let my schooling get in the way of my education." -- Mark Twain