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Comment: Re:Missing out (Score 1) 124

Indeed it is an all around too bad for the millions of _screen lookers_ everywhere --- by focusing on that little lighted panel all the time they never know how much they have been missing out

That reminds me of the one and only time I got robbed. I'm walking along, texting on my cell phone, and next thing I know there's a punk kid pointing a gun at me. In broad daylight. Probably a newbie, as he looked really scared and all he took was my phone. Also, I didn't even notice the two henchmen behind me. Needless to say, no more zombie walking for me.

Comment: Re:on forwarding illegal traffic (Score 4, Insightful) 80

by penguinoid (#48024053) Attached to: Tor Executive Director Hints At Firefox Integration

You already contribute financially to illegal activities. You do business with a business which is used by criminals, saving the criminals money due to economies of scale for said business -- examples: internet, phone, mail, transportation. If you think it is acceptable to do this because it has a lot of legitimate users, what makes it different for Tor? Lots of people value their privacy, especially now that the NSA is unconstitutionally searching all your unencrypted communication. If locks are to keep honest people honest, encryption is to keep dishonest government slightly more honest.

Comment: Re:Should we? (Score 1) 249

by penguinoid (#48015073) Attached to: Could We Abort a Manned Mission To Mars?

I will never understand the quasi-religious fervor some people have about space.

It's the founder effect -- when a small group leaves and establishes a new colony, that group's genes become the dominant genes in the region, even if followed by a relatively large influx some time later. This means that the risks of exploration are countered with the possibility of a tremendous reward in terms of breeding capacity. Thus natural selection favors genes for exploration. ... sorry, I meant "A love for exploration."

Comment: Boooooring! (Score 1) 395

by penguinoid (#48015033) Attached to: The Physics of Space Battles

The reason no one does realistic space battles in movies is that they would violate people's intuitions just to be incredibly boring, at least if you're trying to show the battle. On the other hand, it would be easy and require little/no cgi to actually make a realistic space battle video, but you'd definitely want to focus on the humans at their consoles rather than on the battlefield. It would be little different than a submarine combat video, I would think.

Comment: Re:Oh dear - money grows on trees... (Score 1) 464

by penguinoid (#48008825) Attached to: Utilities Should Worry; Rooftop Solar Could Soon Cut Their Profit

Ladies and gentlemen, there is no such thing as a free lunch, despite politicians pretending otherwise for several thousand years.

But we have made lunches much cheaper over the years, which is similar to adding several free lunches. Used to be if you wanted light at night you had to gather olives and squeeze the oil out of them, and keep refilling your lamp, or similar for candles. Now you can buy a solar panel to recharge the battery over the day and power your light at night, which ends up being so much cheaper and more convenient.

Comment: Re:Interesting. (Score 1) 26

by penguinoid (#48007787) Attached to: New Graphene Research Promises Reliable Chip-Level Production

It's legitimate satire. His "business plan" would be possible to implement before graphene even comes close to fulfilling its "promise". Not saying graphene doesn't have the potential, it's just that sort of thing takes way longer than journalists are allowed by their editors to admit.

Comment: Re:Oh good (Score 1) 903

by penguinoid (#48006989) Attached to: Miss a Payment? Your Car Stops Running

True, but I'm pretty sure that in this case cause and effect works in both directions (ie, it's a viscous cycle). Being poor makes making poor choices more attractive, and making poor choices makes you poor.

But if you make poor choices, having money won't solve your problems. For example, 70% of people who unexpectedly gain a fortune, end up bankrupt 7 years later (link).

...when fits of creativity run strong, more than one programmer or writer has been known to abandon the desktop for the more spacious floor. - Fred Brooks, Jr.