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Comment: Re:Yeah, so? (Score 1) 59

by mbone (#47911161) Attached to: New Data Center Protects Against Solar Storm and Nuclear EMPs

Generally, in the data centers guarantees really mean that you get a payment (or a reduction in fees) if the guarantee is violated. (You might get 1 day's service fee off if you lose power for X minutes, for example). So, if it doesn't work, expect a reduction in the bill, as specified in the contract.

So, if you bet your business on something like this, you had better have a plan B in case of outages.

Comment: Re:Who cares if its legal? (Score 1) 213

by mbone (#47894783) Attached to: Congress Can't Make Asteroid Mining Legal (But It's Trying, Anyway)

If you have the technology to go mine an asteroid, i dont think any country on this planet will be able to take it from you. And if they try, just "accidentally" drop some of what you mined on them.

You may not care, but your investors are highly likely to. That is really what's driving this.

Comment: Wrong, wrong wrong (Score 4, Informative) 213

by mbone (#47894777) Attached to: Congress Can't Make Asteroid Mining Legal (But It's Trying, Anyway)

I was there at the hearing, and I think the summary is pretty far from the true situation.

First, Prof. Gabrynowicz is in the minority in the legal community on this (her response is also to work for international consensus on these issues, which is not going to happen.

Second, the Asteroid Act has been vetted by the State Department (and by a whole bunch of interested parties) and it certainly is in agreement with the Outer Space Treaty of 1967 (even Prof. Gabrynowicz didn't claim otherwise).

Third, all of the space powers appear to be in agreement with the basic principle expressed by the Asteroid Act - that space mining is a lot like deep sea fishing - you can't claim your fishing hole, but you get to keep what you take.

For a more balanced explanation as to why the Act is needed as a US instantiation of the '67 Outer Space Treaty to clarify the rules for US Corporations, see Dean Larson's WSJ Op Ed (or my own take on it).

Comment: Re:Seems reasonable (Score 2) 462

by mbone (#47883971) Attached to: CBC Warns Canadians of "US Law Enforcement Money Extortion Program"

Well, starting with Nixon, one political party has made political hay with "litmus tests" for the appointment of politically correct judges, with opposition and voting out (where possible) of any judges who are "soft on crime." Is it any surprise that our judiciary is now full of political hacks?

Comment: Re:Simple solution (Score 5, Insightful) 462

by mbone (#47883931) Attached to: CBC Warns Canadians of "US Law Enforcement Money Extortion Program"


If police want to seize anything, they should charge the citizen with the appropriate crime, and take him or her to court. Anything else is unconstitutional BS.

Yes, not having the proceeds go to charity just turns it into an open invitation for corruption (and any PD that depends on these funds for operating expenses is certainly corrupt), but the problem is deeper than that.

Comment: The trouble with billionaires (Score 5, Insightful) 363

by mbone (#47840531) Attached to: Bill Gates Wants To Remake the Way History Is Taught. Should We Let Him?

'Frankly, in the eyes of the critics, he's really not an expert. He just happens to be a guy that watched a DVD and thought it was a good idea and had a bunch of money to fund it."

That is exactly and precisely why it is not a good idea to let billionaires run your country. Having had dealings with billionaires, I can also say that he left out one thing, that such a person is almost inevitably going to be surrounded by a bunch of people (including in the press) who think that any idea he has is worthy of adulation.

Comment: Really? (Score 5, Informative) 789

by mbone (#47811595) Attached to: Invasion of Ukraine Continues As Russia Begins Nuclear Weapons Sabre Rattling

This sounds like real news. You would think it would be on the front page of the world's news sites. However...

Isn't on the BBC
Isn't on the Guardian
Isn't on the Washington Post
Isn't on the New York Times*
Isn't on the LA Times

I detect a pattern here.

* The NYT does have on its home page a story entitled "Putin’s War of Words: A Roundup." I guess saying that "thousands of words are already pouring over its western borders" doesn't have quite the same pizazz.

New crypt. See /usr/news/crypt.