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: no... just, yes? (Score 1) 249

by StikyPad (#49513313) Attached to: The Upsides of a Surveillance Society

If the business was closed, then what was the harm in her parking there? None. There's no harm in me parking in your driveway when I'm not there either.

Did the business complain, or did the towing company take her car on their own initiative? Usually businesses sign contracts to allow the towing companies to patrol their lots and tow violators.

Is there any regulatory limit on how much a towing company can demand from car owners? Yes, in most jurisdictions.

Does the business get a kickback, for their participation in this extortion racket? Why would they? They get their lots patrolled for free -- that's their kickback.

Comment: Re:Here's a better idea (Score 1) 586

by Rei (#49513227) Attached to: William Shatner Proposes $30 Billion Water Pipeline To California

That's actually the point. Warm temperatures and near constant sunlight = high productivity - if you import water. Ag in California takes up 80% of the water, but ag + mining together is only 2% of the economy. It's fine when water is abundant, but when it's in short supply, ag has to give.

Comment: Re:Unless (Score 1) 295

by StikyPad (#49513063) Attached to: Joseph Goebbels' Estate Sues Publisher Over Diary Excerpt Royalties

Particular to the antisemitism of the Nazis, one can look at the need to find a villain, some group that they could hold responsible for their economic depression (largely the result of WW1 and the Treaty of Versailles) that did not require that they question their Germanic superiority.

See any Slashdot article about H1Bs to see the phenomenon in action.

Comment: Re:Microtransactions (Score 1) 149

If people didn't pay for it, it wouldn't exist. I'm not talking about any specific game, but the pay-to-play/pay-to-win trend itself. People have shown that they're willing to pay to overcome obstacles -- even obstacles that exist solely to get them to pay, which would be extortion in any other context. The only way to eliminate extortion is to ban it, otherwise it's really damned effective.

Comment: Re:Idiotic (Score 1) 551

Capital punishment is a legal argument, not a moral one. The two are only tangentially related, at best, otherwise name-calling and being a bad parent would be illegal. In a democracy, law is about how many people support an idea, or don't care enough to oppose it, not how moral it is.

Comment: Re:Idiotic (Score 1) 551

But I believe the OP did make a point, while kind of vague, about asking who executes who if you execute an innocent man?

Only if you think people should be executed for acting in good faith in accordance with the law, which seems a bit absurd, especially if you're against capital punishment.

Comment: Misleading headline? (Score 1) 108

Maybe it's my reading comprehension, but this headline made it sound like this deal actually happened to me.

According to the article, "But the deal never happened because Tesla's fortunes quickly began to turn after Musk demanded that all staff, no matter what their job title, get on the phones and sell cars to curious customers who had placed refundable deposits."

Perhaps the headline should read "almost bailed out," or something similar.

Comment: Re:My Casio Fx48 Calculator has a bigger range. (Score 1) 146

by StikyPad (#49511443) Attached to: Mandelbrot Zooms Now Surpass the Scale of the Observable Universe

Floating point numbers, by definition, trade accuracy for size. They're compressed as two numbers -- a base and an exponent, and are limited to the precision of the size of the register.

You need fixed-point numbers to do a level of zoom without losing accuracy, where the level is dependent upon the size of the number you can store.

Comment: Re:Old, old news (Score 1) 146

by StikyPad (#49511345) Attached to: Mandelbrot Zooms Now Surpass the Scale of the Observable Universe

You're absolutely correct about what the article is asserting, and the GP seems to have overlooked how the scale was determined. At the same time, he did hit upon how the Planck length is an arbitrary divisor.

"There is currently no proven physical significance of the Planck length; it is, however, a topic of theoretical research."

There is no scale to the universe that we can prove.. any length could be infinitely divisible, so it's overselling it a bit to say that the scale of the mandelbrot set exceeded the scale of the universe in any real, or even theoretical way.

"Necessity is the mother of invention" is a silly proverb. "Necessity is the mother of futile dodges" is much nearer the truth. -- Alfred North Whitehead