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Comment: Re:What am I missing? (Score 2) 101

by pollarda (#49569119) Attached to: A Cheap, Ubiquitous Earthquake Warning System

Unfortunately, it is this kind of thinking that has caused California to be flat broke. You thought this last economic downturn was bad, just wait until California runs out of ways to juggle its debts and declares bankruptcy. While this article is a bit dated, this article seems to cover it nicely (and there are many more like it).

This isn't to say a good earthquake warning system isn't money well spent simply that California should be less knee jerk about all the projects that they spend their citizens money on.

Comment: If you thought NOAA Has a hard time .... (Score 2) 43

by pollarda (#49467669) Attached to: Tracking the Weather On an Exoplanet
If you think NOAA has it hard now, just imagine what a bitch it will be to provide accurate 10 day weather reports for an exoplanet 64 light years away given 64 year old data.

And j ust so you know, I'm going to drive my SUV no matter what they tell me I might be doing to the weather patterns of some random exoplanet.

Comment: Two Words: Pinto Beans (Score 1) 111

I am sure it is no coincidence that the Four Corners area is at the heart of the methane clod and simultaneously the heart of pinto bean country. In fact, I'll bet that after all their research is concluded that they will find their methane cloud centered around Dove Creek Colorado which is the capitol of pinto bean country in the U.S.

Comment: Re: I do not understand (Score 1) 538

It is pretty simple really. Sometimes people loose sight of the goalpost in defense of their team. Harry Reed put it best in regards to Bill Clinton. At the time Bill Clinton had been accused of sexual harassment (Paula Jones, Kathleen Willey), rape (Juanita Broderick), having an affair with an intern (Monica Lewinsky), and multiple affairs. To this Harry Reed said: "He may be a bastard but he is OUR bastard."

Comment: Re:Buggy whip makers said automobiles aren't... (Score 4, Insightful) 451

by pollarda (#49289713) Attached to: Lyft CEO: Self-Driving Cars Aren't the Future

That may be true. However, self driving cars are an entirely different matter. While they are really cool, do you really want to be in one hurling down the highway at 85MPH (I'm in Utah) and trusting that the automated systems are going to know the difference between a coyote or a tumbleweed? There are an incredible number of obstacles that a person can instantly recognize that even today, a computer can't. If a child and a dog run out into the street at the same time from opposite sides, do you trust the car to make the right decision as to which it will run over? How would you like to be legally responsible for your self driving car if it runs over a child? What about black ice? What if a person is in the road and the car has a choice of running over the person or crashing and possibly killing you. Do you trust the car to make the right decision?

As much as I like software (and writing it), there are IMHO too many judgement calls for a computer and in many situations too many for a lot of (supposedly sane) people.

The only way I can see self driving cars really working is to have special roads to carry them. These would be isolated from regular traffic and most of the regular road hazards. They would be in many ways analogous to a set of rail road tracks. (You don't see trains often running into problems with obstacles -- though when they do, the train usually comes out ahead.) Once you get to where you generally plan on going, you jump off and drive the rest of the way manually.

Comment: Flawed Statistics (Score 4, Insightful) 201

by pollarda (#49164645) Attached to: That U2 Apple Stunt Wasn't the Disaster You Might Think It Was
I am one of those who listened to U2 thanks to Apple as recent as last week. Why? Well when I click my microphone switch (on the headphones) to hang up a call, if I don't do it just right in comes ITunes and starts playing U2. Or my phone will occasionally "pocket dial" the music app and it will start playing U2. If I could delete or turn off the music app, I would. (Actually if I bury it in a directory on an unused page, I'm sure that would help.). So the statistics really needs to be those who listened to U2 willingly vs those who didn't.

Comment: Re:Buy some suntain lotion (Score 4, Insightful) 230

Actually, this isn't too far from the truth. I've heard of a few cases where simply changing the URL has brought up documents that should be private and the person who reported it was brought up on charges for "hacking". Unfortunately, the public does not understand the difference between simply poking around and trying to mess up someone's system for nefarious reasons. Perhaps someone here on /. will remember the particular cases involved but as sad as it sounds, you are on a shaky legal foundation.

Comment: Re: Long Term contact... (Score 3, Insightful) 698

Perhaps one thing that you can share with her is _your_ own history. Tell her about your years growing up and the things you learned at every stage. A contemplative history of your life would be very valuable to her. Tell the stories of when you went fishing with your grandparents when you were five. Tell her about what you remember of your great grandparents if you ever met them. What books you enjoyed and why. Tell her the stories that will be lost and that she will never be able to hear otherwise. Tell her of your first love and your first loss. Tell her what made you as a person. One of the saddest things about my grandparents for me (they all having passed away) is that I can never ask them questions about their lives. It came as a huge surprise for me long after my grandfather passed away that I found out he played a key roll in the Apollo program and saved the program tons of money. (He noticed at the last moment that the blueprints had the various stages diameters off by one foot. he was the last person to see the blueprints prior to manufacture so if he hadn't seen it they would have next noticed when they put the stages together. Boy would I love to hear that story directly.) Tell those stories. Tell the story of her birth and recount the precious moments of her childhood she will likely forget. My heart goes out to you and it says a lot about you as a father and husband that you'd take on a project like this. Oh, and don't forget your wife.

Comment: Re: Overstamp twice. (Score 1) 133

by pollarda (#49101313) Attached to: Crystal Pattern Matching Recovers Obliterated Serial Numbers From Metal
Let's see: I live in Utah. In the vast majority of cities in Utah, there is a 50% ownership per household. (Of those households, the majority own more than one firearm.) There are LOTS of firearms here to be had. There is very little crime. The same holds in Wyoming, Nevada, Idaho, Texas, Oklahoma, Tennessee, South Carolina, etc. etc. etc.

On the other hand states like California, New York, Illinois (Chicago especially), Massachusetts, Hawai'i etc.etc. etc. by in large have significantly higher crime rates and stricter gun laws to the states mentioned.

Comment: Re:Cocoa is also disgusting without sugar (Score 1) 224

by pollarda (#48743459) Attached to: Beware Headlines Saying Chocolate Is Good For You
This is not always true. Good quality cocoa can taste great without sugar. However, most cocoa is not of very good quality (only 1% of the world's production is considered "fine".) Even then, most of the fine quality cocoa is not particularly good quality. However, I regularly make chocolate from a bean from the Dominican Republic that tastes like burgamot oranges and lavender. The flavor of the raw beans (or freshly roasted) is amazing and highly addictive. So in general, you are right but if the beans have been properly fermented and dried (something most farmers don't do well) they can taste quite magical.

Comment: Re:Still useful research (Score 4, Informative) 224

by pollarda (#48743443) Attached to: Beware Headlines Saying Chocolate Is Good For You
I own a chocolate factory. I would HEAVILY recommend NOT eating raw chocolate. I travel to some of the very best cocoa plantations in the world in countries such as Venezuela, Dominican Republic, Peru, Ecuador, Dominican Republic, Mexico, etc. etc. Cocoa is processed at the farm in conditions which are far from sanitary. I've watched dogs walk through cocoa (can you say: fecal coliform bacteria?). I've watched chickens walk through it and pidgins peck at it, and turkeys walk around it and EVERY time you have birds, you have salmonella bacteria.

Roasting is important to not only bring out the chocolate flavor but to kill all the nasties that came from the farm, from the cocoa processing center (or co-op), from the warehousing, from the shipping on the boat in open jute bags, from the transport on the semi to the chocolate factory in the US, etc. There are a million ways that even clean cocoa beans can get contaminated even if they left the farm in great condition. While I've made raw chocolate as an experiment for myself (and it is part of my job afterall), there is no way that I'd ever release the chocolate on a commercial basis without having each and every batch go through extensive microbial testing something that few raw chocolate companies do.

Only through hard work and perseverance can one truly suffer.

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