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Comment Re:Counterexamples. (Score 1) 545

Education is also a right though. So, you have the right to an education, as long as we can take away the right to choose for yourself what you put in your body? Something sounds a bit off with that...

"Should the state be able to set admission requirements for public schools?", the controversy goes away because the answer is obviously yes.

No it doesn't. If the law required sub-dermal tracking implants to enroll in school, you'd be singing a different tune.

Comment Counterexamples. (Score 1) 545

There's a problem with this: you can easily come up with counterexamples to yours that make sense.

"My religion prohibits the ownership of slaves, so I can't turn over the underground railroad travelers to the authorities."
"My religion requires I uphold human rights, so I can't follow my sergeants order to firebomb the innocent civilians."
"I had to march in Selma; I sensed it was a turning point for the nation."
"My religion requires paying taxes, because someone said give to Caesar what is Caesars and give to God what is Gods."
"My religion requires I protect the innocent from their oppressors."

These are also real cases. Your argument tends to take situations where people are doing something ethically wrong, such as trying to kill or steal with religion as an excuse. That isn't the maxim being discussed here. The maxim is more like:

"People have a right to decide for themselves what they put in their bodies" or "The state should not be able to force people to put things in their bodies they don't want to put in them" or something akin to this.

Comment Figure Out Electricity (Score 1) 391

Then lets assumed complex life did evolve on a planet... what if it's a ocean planet and they're aquatic? They're never going to figure out electricity, they can't even experiment with it.

The superintelligent alien electric eel next to me has requested you amend your statement.

Comment Absolutions & Repair-ations (Score 1) 436

If I were to publish an article in a newspaper claiming that you embezzled millions of dollars with no proof whatsoever

What?! You are going to publish an article in a newspaper claiming I embezzled millions of dollars with no proof whatsoever?!?! How dare you, sir!

If I read your comment as a threat to publish just such an article about me and then sue you, I only need to convince others that you meant it that way regardless of the truth -- even if the truth is you didn't mean it as a threat. Systems that don't uphold the truth as one of the principle values which are sought after in their systems of justice are not just systems. Such systems do not achieve justice, but instead enforce a false opinion. The justice system should be a just system.

Comment Garbage In, Garbage Out; Treasure In... (Score 1) 219

That's the whole point in throwing the book at someone and then extracting a plea deal.

Without plea deals the system would grind to a halt.

Without criminalizing forms of speech the system would be freer to deal with actual crime. The legitimate powers of government reach actions only, not opinions.

Comment Learning Resources (Score 1) 316

I would stick to Objective-C for the moment as there are more learning resources online.

I agree with this. As a new user, for the moment, Objective-C is likely the way to go due to their being more documentation out there. Swift documentation though is rapidly increasing.

As a developer in both Swift and Objective-C, the primary advantage of Swift is it is slightly faster to do many things as it doesn't require strict classing of variables, so you find yourself not having to spend as many lines of code swapping strings to integers as that kind of thing and end up with slightly more readable code.

However, these advantages likely aren't as important for a new user as having a wealth of documentation to learn from.

Comment A Solution (Score 1) 255

>such as mandatory criminal record checks, vehicle inspections and insurance

Allow drivers to send those in via taking pictures of them with their phones. Have the drivers maybe pay a small fee to get some kind of background check on their driving records which the DMV should have anyway (instead of a criminal background check, which does't seem relevant). Problem solved.

Comment Re:Moon Ring Math (Score 1) 330

I agree with you. There would likely be a boost over land-based mw estimates. 10% seems reasonable, but I'm not sure how much exactly. I saw 144% on Wikipedia, but that number also took into account the fact that space-based uptime is better than land-based uptime in rainy and snowier places. This system uses stable weather areas as stations though, which would lower that 144% by some amount.

Good article on space-based solar here:

Comment Moon Ring Math (Score 3, Interesting) 330

Yes, I don't however see any data on their website about how wide they are planning to build the ring out. If their graphical renderings are accurate, they display a 195 pixel moon with a 22 pixel ring. Given that google tells me the moon's radius is 1737 km, that means the ring should be about 200 km wide.

So considering that we have a 11,000 km ring that is 200 km width, the power generation for the light-facing half should be what you'd expect from 5500km x 200km or 1,100,000 square kilometers. I've seen estimates of 1.2 mw per square km for solar. Using that as a basis we'd expect 1,320,000 mw of constant power generation. Wikipedia says to take off 10% due to conversion inefficiencies of microwave transmission of electricity and we probably should take off another 5% or so for weather and atmospheric disruptions or inefficiencies. That leaves us with 1,122,000 mw of constant power.

As a point of comparison, all the wind power in the entire world added up to 238,351 megawatts in 2011, so it is roughly five times the capacity of that. However, in 2008 the world had an average power consumption rate of 15 terawatts . 1,122,000 mw is 1.12 terawatts, so this project could supply roughly 7% of the worlds electricity if it was operational today.

The moon has an area of 37,932,000 square km though, so if we coated the entire moon and got energy from the sunny side and do the same math we get 19.34 terrawats. So, at our current state of energy usage it could power the world if we coated the moon in solar panels.

I'm not sure about the aesthetics of it though, a racing stripe on the moon.

A commune is where people join together to share their lack of wealth. -- R. Stallman