Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook


Forgot your password?

Slashdot videos: Now with more Slashdot!

  • View

  • Discuss

  • Share

We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).


Comment: Re:Boo, you fad killer! (Score 1) 110

by orgelspieler (#49346867) Attached to: The One Thousand Genes You Could Live Without
What if that is the gene to be allergic to poison ivy, and we just didn't think to check for that? There's no way to know that a gene doesn't just serve some rarely-used purpose. What if it increases your intelligence by 1%, or some other feature that is affected by hundreds of other factors, like weight or hairline. Or maybe that gene's function is being suppressed by some epigenomic thing. Even the GP's suggestion of making changes isn't a winner, either. If the gene has a subtle purpose, changing it isn't going to make any obvious changes.

Comment: Re:Maybe you should have read more than one senten (Score 2) 264

I don't think that blaming the victim is inherently immoral. There are several moral codes, including the Abrahamic faiths, that include some aspect of blaming the victim. For instance rape victims are supposed to be stoned to death, under most circumstances. Basically, if they are within earshot of others, then obviously they didn't yell loud enough, so they should be punished. There's an allowance for a woman who is outside walking around beyond where others can hear her. I disagree with this specific rule, but there is obviously room for debate on whether or not blaming the victim is immoral.

I happen to think it is perfectly reasonable for those who have not done due diligence to bear some of the burden when they get scammed. For instance, if I give money to somebody soliciting at my doorstep for a charity I've never heard of, I share some of the responsibility for my loss. Worse, I have given a scammer funds with which to propagate their misdeeds to more victims. I think this position is perfectly moral.

Saying somebody is not moral just because they don't share the same morals as you is fallacious at best, and quite possibly hypocritical. I think it's immoral to cut off the hand of a thief. I think it's immoral to commit adultery. I think it's immoral to pay CEO's 100x what their laborers make. But if you happen to think that these things are A-OK, it doesn't make you an immoral person. It just means we have different values.

Comment: Re:Move more, eat less (Score 2) 491

by orgelspieler (#49328833) Attached to: Hacking Weight Loss: What I Learned Losing 30 Pounds
I'm the same way. I hate throwing away something that hasn't completely turned into slime mold. Easy solution that doesn't involve throwing anything away: Bring reusable leftover containers to dinner. Cut meal in half. Put one half in container. Eat the other half. Bring container to work the next day for lunch. As long as you're not eating super-bad-for-you food all the time, this should help you lose a good 15-20 lbs. If you find that you haven't eaten the leftovers in a couple of days, put them in the freezer (since throwing them out will make you twitch). Plus you don't end up throwing away as much Styrofoam as you would using restaurant to-go boxes.

Comment: Temperament and copyright (Score 3, Interesting) 59

I don't see anything on the Kickstarter or description on the website about the temperament of the Bösendorfer on which this was recorded. I hope that they did not use a standard equal-tempered piano. That would be missing out on a great opportunity.

Also, I noticed the following on the back cover of the CD: "(C) 2015 Navona Records ... Unauthorized duplication is a violation of applicable laws." Yet at the top it says that they hope you share the music. What gives?

Comment: Tile (Score 1) 108

by orgelspieler (#49256577) Attached to: The Internet of Things Just Found Your Lost Wallet
Does anybody remember Tile? I chipped in when they were doing their initial fundraising, but I never heard back from them. Anyway, it was pretty similar to this. But it would even work if your lost thing was far away, as long as enough people use the Tile app. The idea was to turn everybody's iPhone into a thing finder for lost stuff. Pretty ingenious, but it delves a little too far into the creepy realm for most people. "You want to use *my* phone to find *your* stuff?!"

Comment: Re:Freedom, liberty and privacy, and the police (Score 1) 160

by orgelspieler (#49251801) Attached to: LAPD Police Claim Helicopters Stop Crimes Before They Happen
At the Sonic where I worked some 15 years ago, we gave a large discount to cops. The hope was they'd spend more of their lunch/dinner breaks at our drive-in and deter any ne'er-do-wells. We never thought of it as corruption, just being nice to public servants in exchange for some token presence/deterrence.

Comment: Re:And this kids, is why you should pirate all mus (Score 1) 386

Yes and somehow you still got Mozart, Beethoven, Bach, Handel, Bizet... want me to continue the list?

Music worked fine without copying for centuries

Are you seriously going to contend that the great masters never copied themes, styles, instrumentation, structure, etc. from each other and past masters? You are clearly not a musicologist. There are several examples. Wikipedia even has article subsections devoted to the topic. Handel was probably the most famous for doing this. Most of his borrowings were from his previous works, but sometimes from teachers or soon-to-be-rivals. Bach's entire Orgelbüchlein was based on extant sacred themes (Lutheran chorales, to be precise). But many more examples abound: Shostakovitch and Brahms from folk music, Beethoven from Mozart, Mozart from Bocherrini, the list goes on and on.

Comment: Re:Lift the gag order first... (Score 2) 550

It wouldn't be surprising; ISPs add a fee for everything.

My neighborhood only has one supplier, Consolidated Communications. They are godawful. They charge to much and their equipment always goes down. Eventually after a number of complaints from the neighbors, they sent some technicians out who figured out the problems were all on their side, and a bunch of equipment was bad. Lo and behold, everybody's bill now has a $3.50 maintenance fee on it. So basically in order to get the service I originally agreed to, I am having to pay more each month to get it. What a load of crap.

This is what's wrong when companies are allowed to operate as unregulated monopolies. Free market only works with an informed populace and viable competition. With ISPs there is rarely either.

Comment: Re:A REAL electricity Spill. (Score 3, Informative) 267

IAAEE. Since sea water is a very good conductor, you would be hard pressed to put "30MW of into the sea." Assuming these are generating at 13.8 kV, and they somehow had their lineside terminals dunked in sea water, you would get a lot of noise and steam followed by the generator protection relays kicking in in like a cycle and a half. Call it 25 ms. The excitation to the generators would be shut off and the voltage would quickly dwindle. You'd have a bunch of fucked up equipment, and anybody in the immediate area might be exposed to electrocution and arc flash hazards, but there wouldn't be noticeable impact to the rest of the ocean. Hell, the generator itself would probably be OK.

Short circuit calculations are something that any power generation place deals with all the time. When you are shorted, you get a lot of current, but not a lot of volts, so your power will go down substantially. Just like when you accidentally drop a screwdriver across a battery. You get a spark, damage the battery, maybe take out some ESD sensitive components, but by and large the rest of the components on the board are OK. There's just no way for the energy to get out to the rest of the world.

In order to get 30MW of electricity actually into the sea water, well... I'm not exactly sure how you could do it. This sounds like a job for Randall Munroe, honestly. You'd probably have to only dunk one phase in the drink. Then you could at least get a little time before the ground fault and unbalanced load relays kick in. You could run the sea water through very long PVC pipes, essentially turning the water into a 30MW heater, and that would raise the temperature of the water. But that's not exactly what you have in mind. Besides, that's sort of like what other power plants do with their waste heat. They dump it into a cooling water body, although not quite at that level you're talking about.

"Mach was the greatest intellectual fraud in the last ten years." "What about X?" "I said `intellectual'." ;login, 9/1990