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Comment: Sentencing matched the guidelines (Score 5, Informative) 316

by pavon (#49803035) Attached to: Silk Road Founder Ross Ulbricht Sentenced To Life In Prison

Here's my point. When I read about the Ross Ulbricbht court, what comes across to me is that the judge is saying "blah blah yadda yadda legal stuff and now here is MY OPINION" which will vary from judge to judge. But surely justice must be consistent? You shouldn't have one judge convicting a person for making an urgent phone call, but a different judge effectively exonerating a policeman for not driving with the care required by his job. And you shouldn't have a judge handing down an entire life sentence when another judge would most likely have given a sentence of 10-20 years.

I am undoing moderation to post this, because I have seen similar comments everywhere covering the story, all moderated up, and it simply isn't true.

Yes sentencing should be consistent which is why we have sentencing guidelines, and this judge followed them. He was convicted of running a continuing criminal enterprise which has a mandatory minimum sentence of 20 years. And it gets worse when you add up the offense levels in the guidelines for his crimes: It was demonstrated that people who took drugs purchased on Silk Road have died from that drug use, which give him a base offense level of 38. The continuing criminal enterprise offense adds 4 points, and since he played an Aggravated Role as the ring leader that adds another 4 points, bringing him to 46 points. The sentencing table for someone with no prior convictions and an offense level of 43 or more is a life sentence, period, and that is before talking about the other five charges he was convicted of! As a judge you would have to present a very strong argument as to why someone with that high of an offense level should get less than life.

The reason he got such a harsh sentence is because our drug laws are so harsh, not because the judge was harsh. Prosecutors have huge flexibility in what they charge people with, and in this case they threw the book at him.

Comment: Re:Context (Score 2) 62

by pavon (#49784207) Attached to: SpaceX Cleared For US Military Launches

The Orbital ATK merger is different because they had complementary capabilities and weren't really competitors. Orbital didn't have any experience building rocket motors; they have always refurbished ICBMs for military launches, or purchased motors for their private launches. Whereas Thiokol produced many of those original ICBM motors that Oribital was reusing, and was already contracting with them to produce new motors for Antares. There was/is some overlap in the non-launch services parts of the companies, but as far as launch goes it was a pretty natural fit for them to merge.

Comment: Re:from what I read... (Score 1) 35

The demo of course takes advantage of Sony’s ‘asynchronous reprojection’ technique to ultimately output at 120 FPS." Translation: Two eyes means two frames, so you get 120fps from 60fps. Right?

No, they are talking about a technique that is also used by Oculus to translate variable frame rate renderings to smooth fixed frame rate output without judder.

Comment: Exactly (Score 1) 347

by pavon (#49666463) Attached to: Linux Mint Will Continue To Provide Both Systemd and Upstart

I don't know why this is moderated down, it is absolutely correct. Ubuntu provides and supports both upstart and systemd:

It's worth noting that while systemd is the default in Ubuntu 15.04, all of the Upstart packages are still there, and you can in fact keep using it if you wish. If you want to switch back and forth, you can use Grub and select "Advanced options for Ubuntu," where you will find an "Ubuntu, with Linux ... (upstart)" entry. If you want to permanently switch, install the upstart-sysv package.

Mint is just following their lead, which makes sense given that Mint is based on Ubuntu. This is a non-story, fabricated because editors know systemd flamebait generates traffic.

Comment: Cross Play (Score 4, Informative) 104

by pavon (#49624959) Attached to: GOG Announces Open Beta For New Game Distribution Platform

Crossplay-enabled games offer online play between GOG and Steam. Because where you buy your games shouldn't prevent you from playing with friends.
Cross-play doesn't require any setup or configuration. Steam users won't need to create accounts or install GOG Galaxy, while users won't need to create Steam accounts. Just log in, launch your game, and start playing online!

That is the killer feature, IMHO. I was scrolling through expecting to just ignore this like I did the downloader, but that actually provides something of value above what you can do with the website.

Comment: Not a big increase in complaints (Score 2) 553

by pavon (#49613967) Attached to: Recruiters Use 'Digital Native' As Code For 'No Old Folks'

At the same time, age discrimination complaints have spiraled upward, according to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, with 15,785 claims filed in 1997 compared to 20,588 filed in 2014.

In 17 years the number of complaints went up by 30%. However according to the Census Bureau, the number of "Mathematical and Computer Science" workers increased by 150% between 1997 and 2012 (from 1.3 Million to 3.3 Million). The number of job postings likely scaled similarly, so the complaints per posting actually went down.


Comment: Devil's Bullets (Score 1) 216

by pavon (#49572657) Attached to: US Successfully Tests Self-Steering Bullets

Now, George was a good straight boy to begin with,
but there was bad blood in him someway
he got into the magic bullets and
that leads straight to Devil's work
just like marywanna leads to heroin
You think you can take them bullets and leave 'em, do you?
Just save a few for your bad days.

Well, now we all have those bad days when we can't hit for shit.

The more of them magics you use,
the more bad days you have without them
So it comes down to finally
all your days being bad without the bullets
It's magics or nothing.
Time to stop chippying around and kidding yourself,
kid, you're hooked, heavy as lead

And that's where old George found himself.
Out there at the crossroads.
molding the Devil's bullets.
Now a man figures it's his bullets,
so it'll hit what he wants to hit.
But it don't always work out that way

You see, some bullets is special for a single aim.
A certain stag, or a certain person
And no matter where you aim, that's where the bullet will end up.
And in the moment of aiming, the gun turns into a dowser's wand,
and point where the bullet wants to go

I guess old George didn't rightly know what he was getting himself into,
the fit was on him and it carried him right to the crossroads.

- Tom Waits, The Black Rider

Comment: Higher, at first ... (Score 3, Interesting) 142

by pavon (#49474825) Attached to: How do your actual ISP speeds compare to the advertised speed?

My CenturyLink DSL connection starts out slightly faster than the advertized rate, but if do any sort of sustained high bandwidth activity, it slowly gets worse and worse. So anytime I watch something on Netflix it starts out at the highest quality, and then every 5-10 minutes stops to rebuffer at a lower quality, until it hits 0.7 Mbps. This occurs regardless of whether I am watching during peak hours or not, and I've seen it with long FTP downloads as well so it is not specific to Netflix, or caused by congestion.

I haven't been able to track down whether it is caused by ISP throttling, or if my wireless router / DSL modem has issues with sustained use. I've tried doing speed tests before, during, and after the problem occurs and they always show that my connection has the full advertized speed.

Comment: Re:Credit Ratings (Score 1) 75

by pavon (#49441105) Attached to: FTC Creates Office Dedicated To "Algorithmic Transparency"

Yeah it is really crappy that a company can lie to the credit agencies about you, destroying your credit score and there is nothing you can do about it. I mean, you can file to have the information in your credit report corrected (because those are statements of facts which would constitute libel), but they aren't required to stop including that information in your credit score (because the score is a statement of opinion) and they usually don't.

Comment: Monitors != Lighting (Score 1) 328

by pavon (#49251727) Attached to: New Crop of LED Filament Bulbs Look Almost Exactly Like Incandescents

Yes, you can't tell the difference in the spectrum of the light when you are staring at the light, so when looking at objects whose color is purely emisive, like TVs and monitors then you can represent the entire gamut of color that the human eye can see by combining three primary colors.

But this breaks down when you are looking at objects that are reflecting that light, because the way those materials reflect light absolutely is wavelength specific. In that case if you have two lights that appear to be the exact same color when staring at them (or when shining them against a white wall), but have different spectra, then objects illuminated with those two lights can look very different because they absorb and reflect those spectra differently. A normal person won't be able to quantify why they look different, but they will know that something is "off" and may get an impression of the lighting in vague terms like mood or character.

So no, you can't fake a lighting spectrum with just 3 primaries, which is why producing good LED lighting has been much harder than producing good LED monitors.

Comment: Re:This is a bug not a feature (Score 4, Insightful) 328

by pavon (#49246417) Attached to: New Crop of LED Filament Bulbs Look Almost Exactly Like Incandescents

For the entire history of the human race nearly all the lighting we have encountered has been block-body radiation, and a black body spectrum will always look better and more natural to us than other light spectrum. So florescent and sodium vapor will finally die off as LEDs become less expensive, but variations in color temperature will never go away. Warm lights will always feel more cozy and intimate just like campfires and candles have always been. Cool light will always feel a bit dreary, like an overcast day. And Daylight spectrum will always feel bright and cheerful. Opinions on whether a living room should be bright and cheerful or warm and comforting may vary. But unless we somehow stop experiencing natural lighting whatsoever, and evolve into Morlocks, variants of black body light will retain their historical associations.

Whenever people agree with me, I always think I must be wrong. - Oscar Wilde