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Comment: Re:HAL 9000 (Score 1) 119

by martin-boundary (#47900943) Attached to: The Challenges and Threats of Automated Lip Reading

By analyzing the light in the background of a video you can see what is reflected there (the people behind the camera). If someone in the background of a terrorist vid is talking about their next terrorist strike- I'd want to know what he was saying.

That's ridiculous. If you can lip read the reflection in a terrorist vid, then you can see the person's face, and you don't need to know what he's talking about, you can arrest him for being an accessory. If you can't see the person's face, try using Photoshop's ENHANCE plugin to erase the blaclava from the picture.

Comment: Re:What did they expect? (Score 2) 182

by martin-boundary (#47899341) Attached to: The MOOC Revolution That Wasn't
This is basically a problem with granularity. They should make their MOOC classes into little self contained units of a single lecture each, with a more complex dependency chart. Then they can measure people's completion rates of the various units, and they'll have a better understanding of what microtopics are actually most popular, too.

Comment: Re:HAL 9000 (Score 1) 119

by martin-boundary (#47899293) Attached to: The Challenges and Threats of Automated Lip Reading
My first thought was "why the hell would I want a machine to lip read?" since lip reading is basically a crutch for humans' inability to hear sufficiently well to extract someone's voice from the surrounding environment.

We already have laser microphones, which can detect sound vibrations at a distance, and we have sophisticated sound processing methods to extract weak signals from noise, etc. We don't need lip reading, other than maybe as a fun science project for graduates.

Comment: Re:Great idea! Let's alienate Science even more! (Score 1) 885

by martin-boundary (#47899237) Attached to: Why Atheists Need Captain Kirk
That in fact is only one of the ways religious ideas fail the test of reality. You're still making the mistake of accepting that there is such a thing as a clear conception of something that represents what religious people mean when they invoke the nebulous word "god".

If you dig deeper, you'll find that in common parlance "god" refers to a set of contradictory statements, which cannot ipso facto exist as any object worthy of study anyway, and even just introducing the premise that an object can exist satisfying the requirements commonly understood by people who use the word "god" will introduce a contradiction into your argument, thereby rendering it a waste of time to pursue.

TLDR: never use the word "god" or any of its synonyms, it's a contradiction in terms.

Comment: Re:Great idea! Let's alienate Science even more! (Score 4, Insightful) 885

by martin-boundary (#47899201) Attached to: Why Atheists Need Captain Kirk
Who cares about the meaning of life, the universe and everything? Science isn't the father figure you've been craving for to tell you who you are and what your place is.

Science is a compendium of human knowledge. It doesn't answer all possible questions, only those we happen to have figured out by now. Except it doesn't do so by a humongous Q+A list, that would be inefficient. It does so by stating a small number of facts and theories, and then you can try to see if your particular Q has an A that's derived from those facts and theories. So you actually have to do some work instead of being told everything. And you need some education to even be able to do the work.

There's no free lunch. If you want that, go check out the Hare Krishna in your neighbourhood.

Comment: Re:What is the point? They are carrying a phone (Score 1) 184

by martin-boundary (#47887577) Attached to: Device Boots Drones, Google Glass Off Wi-Fi

If would be paired with my phone in my pocket. If I was taking photos it would go out through the phone.

Like I said in my comment, I view this as the first steps in a suite of countermeasures, not all necessarily through the Wifi protocols.

I can reasonably imagine that stores or restaurants may create internet free zones, where some technology jams your phone in your pocket, as long as you are within the private premises. Kind of like now, where you can only connect to Wifi if you're reasonably close, the jammers would be localized. Moreover, since every measure invites a countermeasure, there would be other tools that prevent other technologies you might carry from working, once loopholes around the phone jammers become exploitable etc.

As a technology geek, this interests me, as well as knowing what sorts of things will be available when I truly need it. I don't care if this particular Wifi method is slightly niche.

Comment: Re:Good. (Score 1) 102

Exactly. Libraries are the repositories of Humanity's Knowlege. Remember all the stuff we used to know that got lost when we burned the Library of Alexandria? No? Of course you don't, 'cause we lost it.

When it comes to books and knowledge, the economics of publishers has to take second place to the imperative of preserving all the copies we can. Not only should libraries be able to make all the copies they want, they should also be able to share their copies with other libraries. The future demands it.

Comment: Re:When is too soon? (Score 4, Informative) 92

by martin-boundary (#47878417) Attached to: Who Is Buried In the Largest Tomb Ever Found In Northern Greece?
There's no minimum time, just how long anybody is willing to protect the sanctity of the tomb. For example, if it's a king, then his subjects are probably willing to stop and prosecute anyone who's trying to open the tomb for a few generations after, probably until the kingdom gets destroyed even. If it's you, then you get dug up about 50 years after they bury you, so somebody else gets to putrefy in your cemetery spot.

Comment: Re:What is the point? They are carrying a phone (Score 1) 184

by martin-boundary (#47870629) Attached to: Device Boots Drones, Google Glass Off Wi-Fi

Ok so the google glass or what ever doesn't connect to your local wifi.... Um and the google glass wearer with their paired LTE phone in their pocket cares why exactly????

I don't know why *they* care. *I* care about such news, because it's the first step towards building a technology stack that will boot those paired LTE phone / glasshole combos from my neighbourhood.

Every useful countermeasure technology has to start with baby steps somewhere. Hopefully more sophisticated jammers and anti glasshole viruses will be ready for when we truly need it - when those spyware tools become cheap and more plentiful.

Comment: Re: Again? (Score 1) 95

by martin-boundary (#47860747) Attached to: European Commission Reopens Google Antitrust Investigation

It's not a monopoly. Switching search engines is free.

Netscape was free too, and it was easy to switch from IE for anyone who wanted to... And yet MS was rightly convicted.

Never overerestimate the inability of ordinary people from doing the most basic things. You may think it's trivial to switch search engines, but for most people it isn't. And antitrust is all about bringing about a good outcome for most people, not for people like you or me who can take care of ourselves.

So no, switching search engines isn't easy for most people, and therefore it's right to force monopolies to go out of their way to make it easier. The market is made up of ordinary people, and giving them more choices improves the market.