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Comment: Re:former trucker here... (Score 1) 612

by khchung (#49708611) Attached to: The Economic Consequences of Self-Driving Trucks

Or rather, how will the AI decide if it's safe to continue in the blizzard, or if it should pull over?

For an AI with non-urgent cargo, there is no real reason to continue in a blizzard. Only human drivers worrying about being trapped have a reason to keep moving.

When a blizzard is forecasted to approach, all the AI trucks will just go some predesignated waiting spot and sit it out.

Comment: Re:former trucker here... (Score 1) 612

by khchung (#49708599) Attached to: The Economic Consequences of Self-Driving Trucks

Will be interested to see how AI deals with a mountain pass or city traffic; I think autonomous trucks will need human assistance for at least the foreseeable future.

The same way how AI or computer currently deals with other things that are beyond their ability... either avoid it, or signal for operator intervention.

Wouldn't be hard to imagine a team of drivers sitting in a control centers around the world to remotely handle any call-for-help from the auto-trucks. They would be able to see and hear what's around the truck, plus any information they needed, from the cameras/mics/sensors on the truck. The truck can have loudspeakers so the operator can talk to anyone (e.g. cops and other drivers) near the truck. They can remotely drive the truck if needed. In the worst case, they can park the truck at the side of the road and send a truck with a real driver to pick up the cargo, then send the empty truck back.

Or, for particularly tricky pass and roads, auto-trucks just completely avoid them, leaving them for real drivers. For non-urgent deliveries, it would be cheaper for the AI to take an AI-manageable roundabout route than to use a more-expensive human driver through the shorter route. For AI with infinite patience, they could be limited to use roads that are safe for trucks. Even if that just works for 70% of all trucking, that would make economic sense. Human drivers can work on the remaining 30%, until the AI slowly improves and eventually take over more and more of it.

Just like how drones are being piloted. Humans can take over when needed, while the AI can operate the remaining 99% of the boring times. Doesn't mean fighter pilots are all fired, but there won't be as many needed.

So, as a former trucker, would YOU like to drive a truck inside the truck, with all the hardships on the road, plus the risk of injury and death from accidents. OR would you like to drive it from an safe, air-conditioned control center near your home, where you can easily take breaks and go home everyday after an 8-hour shift?

Comment: Re: live by the sword... (Score 1) 611

by khchung (#49664685) Attached to: To Laid-Off Southern California Edison Workers: Boo-Hoo

Get your head out of the sand. In many places around the world, having an employment contract is the norm for *everyone*, including the janitor. And most employment contracts stated clearly what would be the compensation (usually 1 month or more advance notice, or equivalent payment in salary) if one side wishes to terminate the contract.

It is *very common* for larger companies to have standard employment contracts with 3 months of notice for contract termination. If you are in a more important position, or have unique knowledge/skills, you could negotiate longer notice (e.g. I have seen people with 6 months in some case).

Getting half a year of pay when you got fired isn't bad, huh?

Comment: Re:Not encryption, authorization (Score 1) 324

by khchung (#49593749) Attached to: Mozilla Begins To Move Towards HTTPS-Only Web

A lot of content out there is benign, or crackable - what you want to make sure of is that you're connecting to the site you intended, and that the content you're getting is what's intended. What the content actually IS (cat memes) can be less important.

A lot of mails out there is benign also, doesn't mean we shouldn't use envelopes whenever we can.

If only sensitive stuff is encrypted, it helps NSA to locate where are the sensitive stuff.

Comment: Re:It's already happening (Score 1) 407

by khchung (#49526437) Attached to: Using Adderall In the Office To Get Ahead

Annual performance review time... Supervisor says. "You're doing great. Your raise is at the top of the range we're allowed to give. You got a bonus. But, there's a bunch of scary smart fresh-outs coming in. They don't sleep, they're incredibly productive, they're cheap (50% of my pay), they aren't married, they don't have kids. What are you going to do to differentiate yourself?"

It is time to take your money and walk away for some time. Let's those fresh-outs burn themselves out, then you can either come back or work as consultants fixing their messes.

Comment: Re:Hey you grumpy cynics... (Score 1) 356

by khchung (#49520003) Attached to: 'Mobilegeddon': Google To Punish Mobile-Hostile Sites Starting Today

1. The search results are only changing for non-mobile friendly devices IF the search originates from a mobile device, not for everyone.

Note to self: don't use Google on mobile devices, change their default search engine to DuckDuckGo.

I search Google for sites with the best content relevant to what I am looking for, I don't give a flying f**k whether the site have a "mobile friendly" version or not. I can read any webpage on my phone just fine, I can zoom in/out when needed.

Comment: Re:Pearson (Score 1) 325

by khchung (#49490605) Attached to: LA Schools Seeking Refund Over Botched iPad Plan

I can get that they don't like the app, but at this cost they can just write an app.

Pearson is basically selling electronic textbooks that use iPad as the device. You can't "just write an app" for it. Or, sure, you can "just write an app" like you can just write a Kindle App yourself, good luck getting any content on it though.

I have seen Pearson's stuff on iPads (though it may not be what this contract is about), and the real value (if any) is in the contents. The iPad and the app is just the medium.

If the schools signed the contract without going through ALL of the contents first, then they are no different from ordering a ton of textbooks without reading any of it first, and then complain about it "not meeting their needs" when the distributor sent truckloads of the books to them. The fault lies entirely upon the buyer. It would have been the same if those are Kindles instead of iPads.

Comment: Re:Horse, cart (Score 1) 460

by khchung (#49422723) Attached to: Planes Without Pilots

90%+ of comments here have been regarding lack of onboard pilots with commercial passenger flights.

Naturally, the first offboard pilot flights would be with cargo only. And that is way more relevant and less sexy discussion.

It is the same on stories about autonomous cars. 90%+ comments talk about how *they* prefer to be in control of the vehicle, while the most economically beneficial application is for trucks.

Comment: The last 1% is nothing to worry about (Score 2) 258

by khchung (#49408143) Attached to: A Robo-Car Just Drove Across the Country

IF, and that's a big pessimistic if, eventually autonomous car is deemed unable to navigate local city streets, then what you will see are large parking lots springing up around highway exits, where robo-cars will park itself when it leaves the highway.

There, either the human driver takes over immediately and go away, or more likely, the car alert the sleeping driver to wake up. The driver, after sleeping all the way since he got on the highway, gets off and have a meal and refresh himself, then drove off.

OR, the passengers don't even know how to drive. Some other driver drove to the lot next the highway, get off, the car take over to get on the highway, reach the lot near destination, and some other driver came and drive the car to the destination. Think kids of divorced parent, or kids going to visit grandparents.

Same approach applies much more easily to trucks. Now truck drivers only need to go round and round between the last leg on both sides, letting the truck drive itself over the long haul. That means cheap transport, no need for long tiring trips away from home, and fewer accidents.

JUST automating the highway portion is going to give huge benefits, there is no need over worry about the last 1% of the trip.

Comment: Re:Certainty in Science (Score 4, Insightful) 236

by khchung (#49359121) Attached to: Dark Matter Is Even More of a Mystery Than Expected

The quote that bothers me somewhat is this one:

          The data here is on the very edge of reality, built on too many assumptions.

Data is data. Assumptions are the stuff of models and theories. Don't mix the two.

Data is nothing if you do not have any way to interpret it. Models and theories provide the context for interpreting the data.

It is like saying "bits are bits, assumptions are the stuff of encoding and decoding". Problem is, without any assumption to decode your bits, it would be as useful as any random noise. The fact that we can have a conversation here is because I (or rather, my browser) made the assumption that the bits are encoded with a certain pattern, and so did you.

Without any assumptions, models, or theories, the signals we received from Hubble would be no different from random noise.

Without the assumption that the photons came from a distant galaxy, we cannot form the image we can see.
Without the assumption of what they saw were the result of the collision of two galaxies, it would just be a bunch of stars in a strange shape.
Without the assumption of the current model of our universe, we cannot guess what would be the most probably original form of the two galaxies.
Without the assumption of the Theory of Gravity, no one can make sense of what could have happened when two galaxies collide, and thus compare with this observation.
Without the assumption of the model of gases and stars, we cannot reach the conclusion that gases should interact and slow down, while stars would not.

The problem is, with our currently best assumptions, models and theories, those that are able to explain most of our observable universe, we found that it would require the present of some undetectable matter in all the galaxies to make everything consistent -- hence "dark matter".

Yeah, you can claim that is too many levels of assumptions. Feel free to build up your own that could consistently match all the known data even better than the one commonly used.

"Who alone has reason to *lie himself out* of actuality? He who *suffers* from it." -- Friedrich Nietzsche