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Comment human language is very telegraphic (Score 1) 167

That means relatively terse for the deep experiences behind words and sentences. This has confounded deep language understanding by earth machine intelligences for decades.

Human language is telegraphic because because our minds probably operate 99% the same way. We only need to drop brief hints to others to convey shared experiences. We learn language quickly as children because we assume to know mostly what other minds are up to.

This could make it difficult to communicate with alien minds on non-scientific matters.

Comment oil company seismic data used to any binary format (Score 1) 167

Back before the mid 1980s when they settled on an interchange standard. So in my grad research we'd get these mystery tape bit dumps. I had a rough idea of the structure of the data, but not its exact shape, nor even its number format- many more floating point and integer formats in the old days. So with "od -o" I'd coax an image out these mystery bit dumps. I think it would be fairly straight forward to do this with AM, FM signals.

Comment another priest first computed Big Bang (Score 1) 268

Georges Lemaitre ( explored the expansion solution of Einsteins General Relativity Field Equation which Einstein initially resisted. Georges called it the "cosmic egg" (until detractor Fred Hoyle named it after British slang for ejaculation). Note both Guy and Georges studied at MIT.

Comment fraction Muslims who go on Hajj (Score 1) 184

If there are 1.0 to 1.5 billion Muslims, but the hajj logistics maxes out at about 2.5M a year, I was wondering what fraction of Muslims are able to practice this essential tenant of their religion. Forbes tried to compile statistics in this figure One out of six at best. Distance, finances, and quotas limit those who are able to attend.

Comment I almost puked ar SIGGRAPH (Score 4, Interesting) 90

In old days the delay in VR made me nauseous. However at the SIGGRAPH a couple months ago I sampled some of the newer VR setups and almost got sick because it felt so real. One Sony demo had you walk a tight rope between two skyscraper roofs. You could see the ground out of the edge of your eyes. Lots of people found it difficult to walk the rope because it felt so scary. Ditto another demo with Oculus riding a skateboard at 40 miles an hour.

We all like praise, but a hike in our pay is the best kind of ways.