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Comment: Re: CB Radios (Score 1) 938

by ThinkingGuy (#38360682) Attached to: NTSB Recommends Cell Phone Ban For Drivers
I have no data to back this up, but based on my own experience* I think there are differences in the nature of communication between cell phones and radios (CB/Amateur/business/etc.).
Cell phones being full-duplex, people are more likely to talk over one another, as they do in face-to-face conversations, which means you have to be listening while talking. With half-simplex radios, on the other hand, you're either receiving only or transmitting only, which seems like it would make it easier to "compartmentalize" the activities in the brain. Again, I'm just hypothesizing. Also, on the radio, long pauses in a conversation are not on acceptable but frequently encouraged (to listen for any other stations to want to join the conversation or use the frequency). This, coupled with the necessity of coordination would seem to have the effect of generally slowing down the pace of the conversation, and freeing up more cycles in everyone's brain.

*Granted, I'm definitely biased on this topic, being a ham radio operator who regularly talks on a mobile radio with several other hams while driving to work in the morning. I do try to take sensible precautions, though; I don't talk and drive if the weather is bad, if visibility is low, if I'm trying to navigate in an unfamiliar part of town, or if I'm merging or performing some other delicate maneuver.

Comment: Re:Citation please (Score 4, Insightful) 938

by ThinkingGuy (#38360146) Attached to: NTSB Recommends Cell Phone Ban For Drivers
I actually asked a police officer about this subject once. Specifically, I asked if they received any special training on how to drive and talk on the radio/phone at the same time. His response was, in effect: No, there's no special training, but witnessing on a daily basis the deaths, injuries, and carnage caused by careless driving serves as a strong motivation to exercise caution while driving.

Rob "CmdrTaco" Malda Resigns From Slashdot 1521

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the steve-got-front-cutsies dept.
After 14 years and over 15,000 stories posted, it's finally time for me to say Good-Bye to Slashdot. I created this place with my best friends in a run down house while still in college. Since then it has grown to be read by more than a million people, and has served Billions and Billions of Pages (yes, in my head I hear the voice). During my tenure I have done my best to keep Slashdot firmly grounded in its origins, but now it's time for someone else to come aboard and find the *future*. Personally I don't have any plans, but if you need to get ahold of me for any reason, you can find me as @cmdrtaco on twitter or Rob Malda on Google+. You could also update my mail address to be malda at cmdrtaco dot net. Hit the link below if you want to read some nostalgic saccharine crap that I need to get out of my system before I sign off for the last time.

NASA Discovers 7th Closest Star 137

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the practically-in-my-back-yard dept. says "Scientists using data from NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) have discovered the coldest class of star-like bodies, with temperatures as cool as the human body. Astronomers hunted these dark orbs, termed Y dwarfs, for more than a decade without success. When viewed with a visible-light telescope, they are nearly impossible to see. WISE's infrared vision allowed the telescope to finally spot the faint glow of six Y dwarfs relatively close to our sun, within a distance of about 40 light-years. 'WISE scanned the entire sky for these and other objects, and was able to spot their feeble light with its highly sensitive infrared vision,' said Jon Morse, Astrophysics Division director at NASA Headquarters in Washington. 'They are 5,000 times brighter at the longer infrared wavelengths WISE observed from space than those observable from the ground.'"
Real Time Strategy (Games)

Sports Bars Changing Channels For Video Gamers 351

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the we-watch-channel-zero dept.
dtmos wrote in to say that "This summer, StarCraft II has become the newest bar room spectator sport. Fans organize so-called Barcraft events, taking over pubs and bistros from Honolulu to Florida and switching big-screen TV sets to Internet broadcasts of professional game matches. As they root for their on-screen superstars, StarCraft enthusiasts can sow confusion among regular patrons... But for sports-bar owners, StarCraft viewers represent a key new source of revenue from a demographic—self-described geeks—they hadn't attracted before."

Researchers Report Spike In Boot Time Malware 132

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the can't-fight-the-fever dept.
wiredmikey writes "In their most recent intelligence report, Symantec researchers pointed out a massive increase in the amount of boot time malware striking users, noting there have already been as many new boot time malware threats detected in the first seven months of 2011 as there were in the previous three years. Also known as MBR (master boot record) threats, the malware infect an area of the hard disk that makes them one of the first things to be read and executed when a computer is turned on. This enables the threats to effectively dodge many security defenses."

+ - Facebook Data Collection Under Fire Again->

Submitted by
JohnBert writes "A German privacy protection authority is calling on organizations there to close their Facebook fan pages and remove the social networking site's "Like" button from their websites, arguing that Facebook harvests data in violation of German and European Union law.

The Independent Centre for Privacy Protection (ULD), the privacy protection agency for the German state of Schleswig-Holstein, issued a news release on Friday saying Facebook builds a broad, individualized profile for people who view Facebook content on third-party websites.

Data is sent back to Facebook's servers in the U.S., which the agency alleges violates the German Telemedia Act, the German Federal Data Protection Act and the Data Protection Act of Schleswig-Holstein. The agency alleges the data is held by Facebook for two years, and wants website owners in the state to remove links to Facebook by the end of next month or possibly face a fine."

Link to Original Source

Humanoid Robot Wakes In Space, Tweets 91

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the kill-all-humans dept.
DeviceGuru writes to note that "Robonaut 2 (aka R2), the first humanoid robot to become a permanent resident of the International Space Station (ISS), was awakened from stasis this week after six months in orbit. R2s first words? 'Those electrons feel GOOD!' The success of R2's activation on the ISS paves the way for putting R2 through its first movements in orbit on Sept. 1, when R2 will be sent commands for moving its arms and hands. Assuming these and other tests proceed without a hitch, R2 will start assisting the ISS crew with simple tasks in 2012. Coffee? Tea? Cigarettes?"

"Regardless of the legal speed limit, your Buick must be operated at speeds faster than 85 MPH (140kph)." -- 1987 Buick Grand National owners manual.