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Comment: Re:Um, here's a glaring fact (Score 1) 97

by mvdwege (#47446937) Attached to: Elite Group of Researchers Rule Scientific Publishing

Option 6: Submitted papers really aren't that good.

Especially in subjects with a lot of politicisation in the popular press, it is a common tactic for third-rate or worse researchers to go crying about the establishment suppressing their papers; a closer look often turns out that these papers are in fact very shoddy work.

Comment: A.I. is still hard, Self-Awareness not on map (Score 2) 556

Given that China's recent supercomputer can't find enough work at the rates they have to charge to cover their electric bill, it seems to me that any such problem would be as simple as pulling the plug and waiting for the batteries to die down.

I'm also mystified as to how one gets a deterministic device to have volition and self-awareness --- Heinlein could handwave this by declaring that after a certain number of transistors a device ``woke up'' and became aware (The Moon is a Harsh Mistress), Marvin Minsky sidestepped it neatly (The Turing Option), and Victor Milán had to posit algorithms which produced random results and bolt on a radioactive cannister whose decay was used as a source of random input (The Cybernetic Samurai).

Comment: Re:Well that sucks! (Score 1) 484

by WillAdams (#47316111) Attached to: Supreme Court Rules Against Aereo Streaming Service

Building the right antenna helps a lot for OTA TV:

I had to build one when the local PBS affiliate reduced their power output when the other stations went digital --- also location, had to run a cable upstairs and put the antenna behind the sofa (have to move it to the window when the weather is bad --- my wife won't let me hang it on the wall).

Comment: Re:Speaking as a guy in his 40s... (Score 2) 370

by mvdwege (#47292699) Attached to: Age Discrimination In the Tech Industry

younger people are (generally) better at thinking up new ideas/paradigms and novel ways to do things

As a guy with some experience, all I hear is "younger people blindly follow the newest fads". As it turns out, there have been very little new ideas in IT, and most of the New! Improved! ways promoted these days are merely restatements of old ideas, or old ideas that got discarded for being unpractical.

But in an industry with an institutional memory of barely a decade, that sounds like innovation. And it's self-reinforcing due to the fact that not a lot of employers appear to be interested in hiring experience, instead being dazzled by the Cult of Youth.

Comment: Re:One Problem (Score 1) 619

by WillAdams (#47281139) Attached to: 2 US Senators Propose 12-Cent Gas Tax Increase

The bad thing is the per-axle nature of the vehicle taxes actually encourages the design of tractor-trailor designs which do even more damage --- change it to a tax based on GVW divided by the contact area of the tires (and do a tire tax based on the mass of the tire) and you'd encourage the design of vehicles which aren't so hard on the roads.

Comment: Re:FF Motorcycle Solved? (Score 1) 218

Agree, it's an interesting solution.

If the price point were more like to that of Elio Motors, $6,800:

it'd be a lot more interesting, and I'm certainly looking forward to seeing someone make an electric version of the Elio or something like it.

(who rode his daughter's bicycle in to work today)

Of course you can't flap your arms and fly to the moon. After a while you'd run out of air to push against.