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Comment: I learned the scientific controversy in school (Score 1) 665

by nameer (#46224299) Attached to: South Carolina Education Committee Removes Evolution From Standards

When I took basic biology in high school, they taught us Lamarkism and Spontaneous Generation as alternative theories. Then we went on to show that these formed testable hypotheses that were easily disproven. That is how you teach scientific controversy. With alternative scientific hypotheses.

Comment: Re:beacon of freedom (Score 1) 266

by nameer (#45926203) Attached to: How Chris Christie Could Use the NSA Playbook

With respect to 4, no the Federal Reserve is not "literally printing money", however the money deposited in the reserve accounts of the member banks is indeed new money. This can be fairly described euphemistically as "printing money." The important question is whether the increase in the money supply risks inflation. Currently, it doesn't look like it. And now we are starting to move into the "remove the punch bowl" phase of monetary policy with reductions in the buying program. As the Federal reserve eventually transitions from buying to selling its bond holdings, the money that the member banks pay the Fed to buy back the bonds disappears in a poof as money is removed from the money supply. It will be interesting to see if we can get the meme going, "The Fed burns $XM every month!"

Comment: Re:Integrity Hotline (Score 1) 310

In general, if you absolutely know that you are in the right, don't report anonymously. If you report as yourself you have protection against retaliation. If you report anonymously, those protections go away because the ethics/integrity dept can't show that there is retaliation without knowing that it was you that reported the misconduct.

Comment: Re:How did they hide prior patents? (Score 5, Informative) 137

by nameer (#39664323) Attached to: Nest Labs Calls Honeywell Lawsuit 'Worse Than Patent Troll'

Duty of disclosure means that if you are aware of relevant prior art when applying for a patent in the US, you are obligated to inform the USPTO about it. Nest is saying that Honeywell should have at least known about its own prior patents, and that not disclosing them violated the duty of disclosure. This is grounds for the patent being found invalid.

Comment: Re:Take environment conditions into account (Score 3, Interesting) 183

by nameer (#39639591) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: The Very Best Paper Airplane?

The intent of the organizers is to generate designs with "nice" glide ratios. But to encourage that, the right metric is not distance of flight, but time aloft. A paper airplane that slowly covers 15' is a much "nicer" design then a wadded paper ball that covers 40' in two seconds.

Comment: Re:corporate responsibility (Score 1) 334

by nameer (#39032083) Attached to: Apple-Approved Fair Labor Inspections Begin At Foxconn

Does China have a free and liquid labor market? I know next to nothing about China's labor economics and politics, but I would strongly suspect that the labor market is quite illiquid (if that word has any meaning in this context). That is, do factories get to compete for workers with compensation and working condition market based incentives? Or does the Party inhibit the competition among factories so that it really is a Foxconn or nothing type proposition?

Comment: Re:Where's the fallout? (Score 2) 473

by nameer (#37237002) Attached to: Mass. Court Says Constitution Protects Filming On-Duty Police

That is what this decision is! The title of the suit is:

SIMON GLIK,
Plaintiff, Appellee,
v.
JOHN CUNNIFFE, in his individual capacity; PETER J. SAVALIS, in
his individual capacity; JEROME HALL-BREWSTER, in his individual
capacity; CITY OF BOSTON,

Glik is filing a law suit against the officers individually and the city of Boston alleging a violation of his civil rights. The defendants claimed that the officers have qualified immunity and are not subject to a law suit. The appellate court has said here that "No, you did violate the rights and have no qualified immunity." Now Glik should be able to proceed with the law suit and get damages. My guess would be that after this ruling there will be a settlement, as it doesn't look like the defendants can win the civil suit without immunity and with the evidence so clearly spelled out by the appellate court.

Comment: Re:Pretty cool (Score 1) 56

by nameer (#37177688) Attached to: MK-1 Robotic Arm Capable of Near-Human Dexterity, Dancing

The video says that the servo control is handled on board the module. So, you would need a trajectory planner and interpolator, but not amplifiers or drives. There is no comment on how to set up the tuning (for good control, robots require non-linear control laws). I *think* the newest ABB robot controllers, with some undocumented options, can directly feed interpolation points out over CAN bus (accepted by these modules), so it might be possible.

The solution of problems is the most characteristic and peculiar sort of voluntary thinking. -- William James

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