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+ - Polar Vortex Likely Decimated Stink Bug Population, Experiment Suggests->

Submitted by barlevg
barlevg (2111272) writes "Each fall, a team led by Virginia Tech Professor of Entomology Thomas Kuhar gathers brown marmorated stink bugs from around campus and plops them into ventilated and insulated five-gallon buckets designed to simulate the habitats in which the bugs naturally wait out the winter. While previous lab tests have shown the insects capable of surviving chills of -20 C, last month's polar vortex proved too much for the little guys, with only 5% surviving the sustained cold conditions. This suggests that the DC area's population of stink bugs and other overwintering insects should be much lower come spring than in previous years."
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Comment: Re:Fuck 'em (Score 5, Insightful) 204

It is rather difficult to trust a group of people with a long history of lies, abuses, manipulation, and little or no accountability.

That also explains why I don't trust much coming out of the "hacker" community, either. :)

See what happens when you make sweeping generalizations about a community based on the wrongdoings of some members of that community?

Comment: Re:And... it's gone (Score 1) 636

You are either a shill for NK, or a stooge. NK has REPEATEDLY threatened imminent attacks on US soil in the past month. They even showed a video of KJU conferring with his generals, with a map of the USA showing missile tracks targeting several cities.

The general consensus is that Kim is posturing mostly to strengthen his internal political position, but he is doing it in an extremely dangerous and unpredictable way.

Comment: Re:Probably Bought with Laundered Tax Free Income (Score 1) 179

by nobodyknowsimageek (#43414713) Attached to: Crazy Eric Schmidt, His Yacht Prices Are Insaaane!

I don't think the treaties necessarily would prohibit charging fees after a rescue. Certainly you can be fined after a rescue if you were negligent; it doesn't take too much to imagine a fee charged for a rescue if the boat owner was a US citizen and yet had avoided paying sales tax on their yacht by registering in a tax-haven, and was subsequently rescued in US waters.

It could even be structured so that the fee would be nominal for "normal" boats; e.g. 0.1% of the last sale price. But that $20M yacht? That will be $20 grand please.

Most "normal" boat owners will have paid the sales tax anyway, and be exempt from the fee.

Comment: Re:Make reasonable laws - AND ENFORCE THEM VIGOROU (Score 1) 400

by nobodyknowsimageek (#43407979) Attached to: Speeding Ticket Robots — Laws As Algorithms

In California, the "Maximum speed law" states that the maximum speed you can drive is no faster "than is safe". This means you can be ticketed for driving at the posted speed limit if it is (subjectively) not safe under the current conditions (i.e. weather, traffic, etc).

Theoretically it also means that driving OVER the posted speed might not be ticketable; I had a driver's ed instructor who claimed that he had gotten a speeding ticket thrown out by arguing in traffic court that he was driving safely, even though over the posted limit; YMMV.

Effectively this means that a cop could ticket you at ANY speed, and argue that it was unsafe. My experience is that in normal traffic, the "up to 10mpg over" rule is the norm, at least on the freeways/highways.

Comment: Seems unlikely this is really a danger... (Score 1) 263

Airplanes routinely try to avoid thunderstorms because of the danger of wind shear. At most this danger might lead to increasing the preferred distance; but it seems unlikely that there much added risk vs. proximity to a lightning strike while on the ground.

Comment: Re:slow news day? (Score 1) 631

by nobodyknowsimageek (#43403969) Attached to: No Such Thing As a Tax-Free Lunch At Google?

I thought we valued people paying their fair share of taxes.

The Googlers are certainly in the top 5% of earners in the US, many of them are probably in the top 1%.

Why wouldn't you want them paying their fair share?

Are we going to go after schoolchildren that trade desert cups at lunchtime because one has a higher value than another and can be called taxable income? If I pay the check for a date does that mean she has to declare it on her taxes?

Any company that provides free (to the employee) lunch is eating the cost, pardon the pun. If the issue is whether the lunch benefit is taxable, perhaps buying the food from a supplier should already pay the tax. I have no idea if it does right now or not, or what tax arrangements are to be had, but to call this a Google problem is just looking for a reason to be bitchy at those who have more than you.

Your arguments are specious at best; children trading cups do not have an employer/employee relationship. The company is not "eating the cost"; providing these meals is certainly treated as an expense, which means they are writing it off and thus getting a tax break. Seen in this light this is a tax-dodge; a way of compensating their employees, (and receiving a tax break on the expense) while their employees do not pay taxes on the benefit.

Comment: Re:Better answer (Score 1) 572

>

Only geeks complain about DRM. Not saying I'm all for it but I can tell you most console users don't give a shit.

This is demostrably false. non-geeks complain about DRM when:

1) they are unable to play content they have purchased because the DRM is broken
2) the DRM cripples their machine
3) the DRM interferes with their use of other software

All of these things have happened. DRM is a losing strategy long-term. I say this as an ex-employee of a company that sold DRM to both the movie industry and gaming industry (hint: they managed to get Congress to mandate licensed use of their tech in VCRs).

Comment: Re:Oh? (Score 5, Informative) 330

There was a book, subsequently made into a move: "The Mouse that Roared". The only flaw in their plan was that their tiny little invasion force actually landed on the East Coast, managed to capture a Doomsday device the US had built, and thereby won the war. Hilarity ensued!

Comment: Wrong approach (Score 1) 384

by nobodyknowsimageek (#43039063) Attached to: Is Code.org Too Soulless To Make an Impact?

I don't think "Encouraging more kids to learn to code" makes any sense at all. That is a top-down approach. Not everybody is cut out to be a coder, in the same way that not everybody is going to become a professional athlete, or a doctor, or any other profession.

Please DON'T tell kids that coding is guaranteed to make them financially successful; first of all it's not true, and secondly that is the wrong way to find your passion. First and foremost kids should be encouraged to find their passion, and THEN figure out how to be successful at it. And success does not always have to be measured in $$$.

If we want to increase to pool of talented coders, the right approach is to provide opportunity for kids that express an interest to have the tools they need to figure out if coding is the right thing for them. Some of them will find that it is; some may not, but they may find their way into something related and will be the better for having had the experience.

Comment: Re:Retrieved Samples Without DPRK's AF Scrambling? (Score 1) 132

I think you could make the case that the Allies won the war in large part due to superior cryptography. If the British (and later the US) had not been breaking the German and Japanese naval codes for most of the war, things might have turned out very differently.

Comment: Re:California (Score 5, Funny) 514

by nobodyknowsimageek (#42685143) Attached to: California's Surreal Retroactive Tax On Tech Startup Investors

NO NO! We hate it here! It's terrible! Don't move to California, the weather isn't nearly as nice as you think! And there are all these liberals everywhere! And the GAYS!

By all means move to the East Coast; or Texas! Anywhere else but here.

(wink wink).

signed,
lifelong Californian

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