Slashdot is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop


Forgot your password?

Comment Another toy... (Score 0) 322

Another toy for the liberal elite to spend money on to somehow absolve themselves of all the guilt they feel for having money to spend on such toys, whilst simultaneously allowing them to look down their nose at the rest of us 'proles who have to drive these nasty, earth-killing, bunny-murdering cars that run on fossil fuels.

Get back to me when I can drive something that will carry me, my wife, and five kids 300 miles without have to stop for a 12-hour "refill" and costs under $40K.

Comment It's useful to consider the source. (Score 5, Insightful) 444

Look up Donna Ford's bio at Vanderbilt and you get this as her "Research Area":

Gifted with emphasis on minority children and youth; recruitment and retention of diverse students in gifted education; underachievement among diverse students; equity issues in testing and assessment; multicultural education; issues in urban education.

So basically Ford's entire area of expertise depends on FINDING bias in these programs. Perhaps she should acquaint herself with Confirmation Bias. If you look hard enough for anything, you'll find it whether it's there or not.

Further, the bias is explained by Ford as a fault of the gifted program, but she completely neglects CULTURAL FACTORS that also bias gifted involvement. There is, generally speaking, a cultural bias in the black community AGAINST academic excellence. It even has a name: "acting white." Blacks who use proper spelling and grammar are called "Oreo's," a derogatory term indicating they're "black on the outside but white on the inside." This is especially bad in poorer neighborhoods where "leaving the hood" is considered akin to being a racial traitor. Act like a thug, dress like a thug, eschew education in favor of "hanging out" and you're accepted. Anything else and you're ostracized.

Don't believe it? Ask around. It's common knowledge. Nobody wants to say it but everyone knows it's going on.

Comment Re:Mission accomplished (Score 1) 399

Right, and Germany is sunnier than the USA

Strawman. I never said anything of the sort. That said, Germany is spending heavily to IMPORT power from neighboring countries. You might've missed that fact.

No they don't because in today's world, unless you are right on the grid path, it is often cheaper to just run solar or wind turbine. The grid isn't all that any more.

Remind me again what portion of the INDUSTRIALIZED FIRST WORLD runs off of local wind turbines and/or local solar? Oh, that's right: not much. There's a perfectly good reason for that: it's not reliable power like grid power. Solar doesn't work when it's cloudy, at night, or when panels are covered by snow. Wind doesn't work unless it's windy. Grid power works all the time, every time. Power that isn't there when you need it most is rather useless.

Solar/wind is a good solution SOME OF THE TIME IN CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES. But only a fool -- and a obsessive fool at that -- maintains that it's a practical alternative to grid power in places where grid power is available.

Oh, and nice dig at Fox News, not that it's remotely relevant to the discussion. But it does show your bias.

Comment Uber isn't stupid (Score 3, Interesting) 230

Uber isn't stupid. They know the existing transport monopolies are maintained due to political connections aka lobbying. Uber knows there is no way it will be able to upset this status quo without support from local politicians. That, unfortunately, means lobbying. Love it or hate it, it's how things get done these days.

Comment Do you want a diversity hire? (Score 5, Insightful) 287

Google hires people based on talent. Women and minorities are under-represented in the technical and engineering community. That is a fact of life. Until more women and minorities CHOOSE to enter this field, getting a "diverse workforce" would have to mean you exclude more qualified white males in order to hire less qualified minorities and women.

Think about that for a moment. Suppose hospitals did things this way? If you need critical brain or heart surgery, do you want your surgeon to be one of the best in his or her field, or one that was a "diversity hire"?

Until you're comfortable with the second option, this "diversity" idiocy needs to stop. It's one thing to exclude perfectly qualified candidates because they're female or minority. It's another thing to make that the primary reason you're hiring them instead of making sure they're the best qualified for the job.

Comment Re:You don't have to go faster (Score 2) 226

How exactly is space expanding, and what exactly is expanding into?

This is difficult to answer without getting into a long discourse on spacetime. However, you have to get away from the notion that there is some kind of "edge" to the universe and space is somehow expanding that edge into infinite nothingness. There is no "edge" to the universe anymore than there is a definable "edge" to our planet (i.e. a flat earth).

Comment Poorly written (Score 2) 226

Poorly written article and misleading summary. Basically the article says you can "travel faster than the speed of light" without violating relativity...but neglects to mention which "speed of light" you're beating. Light speed is different in depending upon what medium -- or lack thereof -- it's traveling through. It's possible to slow light down to the point where you can walk faster than that speed of light. But you're not violating relativity by doing so because you're moving through a different medium.

So, hyperdrives...not so much.

Comment Re:The begining (Score 1) 52

Here's where I have to be a bit cynical and pragmatic. Googling around, it seems it cost $13.25 billion to find the Higgs. I remember a lot of people in the US were very ticked off when the budget for a US-based collider was eliminated, but let's get real here: does it really matter which country found the damned thing, other than the pride of the physicists involved in finding it?

And now that it's found, and given it's somewhat unlikely -- although admittedly not impossible -- the LHC will find something new and exciting at 13TeV, what are they gonna do with a $13.25 billion collider that can't find anything new?

Comment Re: And what about the infrastructure issues? (Score 1) 294

So you punish a guy who makes little money when you could install comprehensive safety systems to prevent any deaths?

Since when does the amount of money he makes factor into this? If his negligence resulted in the death or injury of people on the train, he should be punished. I don't care if he's a pauper or the richest man in the world, if you take responsibility for a train carrying hundreds of people and you don't respect that responsibility, you deserve every iota of punishment that can be mustered against you.

Comment Why carry everything with the astronauts? (Score 1) 46

For the life of me I can't understand why everyone wants to keep insisting we load everything on a ship with the astronauts and send it all there at once and HOPE nothing goes wrong along the way that kills everyone.

Instead, how about this: we send automated "builder" ships to Mars with a mission to excavate pits in the Martian surface, place inflatable habitats in them, inflate them, then cover them with enough soil to protect against radiation. Monitor the damned things to make sure they're working properly, THEN send the astronauts. If anything goes wrong, at least you know they've got a place to stay until we can get help to them. Obviously you'd need more than just inflatable housing, but this idea pre-supposes you send some sort of power generation facility (nuclear would be best), life support, and enough food for a year or so.

Even better, in addition to the above, send one or two "return trip" ships to Mars ahead of the astronauts so they have a redundant way to get home if something goes wrong. Send a fuel refinery as well that can take Martian atmospheric CO2 and turn it into rocket fuel so you don't have to send fully-fueled ships all the way to Mars. If you start it refining before the astronauts leave Earth, you can have full tanks ready to go by the time they get there.

All of this is completely achievable with current technology and reasonable timelines. Why in the world we're screwing around with trying to do everything in one trip -- along with the massive risks and massive risk mitigation costs that go along with it -- are beyond me.

Comment Re:Who will win? (Score 1) 176

Spoken like a true drooling idiot who has lost all critical thinking skills.

Those who cannot argue logically resort to ad hominem attacks.

Yes, choice is a strong aspect of the market. But if you think the market achieves perfect outcomes in the long run just simply because it's the market ... you're delusional.K

No one said it was perfect, but thank you for creating a strawman, another weak logical fallacy.

f you think removing all government regulations will produce anything except anarchy, you really need to step back and look at reality, and what the actual evidence is for your ideology, instead of just thinking your ideology is 100% complete and infallible.

Again, another strawman. I never said anything about removing all government regulations. Some things -- like not being able to shout "fire" in a crowded theater -- make logical sense. Others -- like forcing nail salons to obtain a license in order to do their specific business -- are idiotic. If you're unable to sift the wheat from the chaff, that's your problem.

Stop pretending otherwise.

Since you're the one who's consistently stooped to ad hominem, strawmen, and completely refused to address any of the logical arguments presented -- namely, why should choice be restricted when it harms no one but the person making the choice? -- it's clear you're the one who needs to quit pretending. This is not about Uber being a corporation trying to flout rules and screw the public. It's about the rules being ridiculous in the first place and Uber is disrupting the status quo. Get this through your thick anti-capitalist skull: Uber would not exist if there was not a demand for its services. Ergo, if Uber exists, it's because the existing services model is flawed, inefficient, expensive, outmoded, or some combination thereof. Replacing something flawed with something less flawed -- or even differently flawed -- is probably a good thing. The only way to know for sure is to let the idea compete in an open market where it will live or die on the merits of its usefulness. But you don't want to do that. You want to maintain the status quo, quash choice and innovation, and tell people you know what's better for them than they do. Because reasons. And corporations bad. Yadda yadda yadda. Your vitriol in this respect is as predictable as it is laughable.

I have yet to hear anything logical or reasoned from you regarding why choice should be quashed. If the idea is bad, it will die on the all bad ideas should. If it's good then what it replaces will die on the it should.

Comment Re:Who will win? (Score 0) 176

See, "the market" isn't "nature", and "undercutting competition by ignoring laws and regulations" isn't a vacuum. That is a complete lie.

Oh really? Then explain why people are using Uber at all instead of the licensed, regulated cab companies that are omnipresent at all Uber-served locations? Saying something is a "complete lie" doesn't make it so, you know. The obviousness of reality proves you're incorrect.

And we have those laws because in the past greedy, shady douchebags with little regard for the welfare of others have decided to act like greedy, shady douchebags. And this whole crap of "people are free to not buy from greedy, shay douchebags" is so so much garbage it isn't funny.

Spoken like a true Social Justice Warrior. So, do you buy products and services from greedy, shady douchebags yourself? Or do you exercise your own free will and avoid buying from companies that exploit sweatshop workers, cut environmental corners, and screw their employees? I do, and it works out rather nicely. If you do as well then you've just invalidated your premise that government is required to keep the greedy, shady douchebags in check. If you don't, you're a hypocrite. Or, perhaps there's a third case where you're forced to buy goods/services from greedy, shady douchebags but only because they're protected by a government-sanctioned (officially or otherwise) monopoly.

Companies that consistently act in a fashion counter to what their customers want don't usually survive long. In fact, they typically only survive if -- drum roll please -- government regulation or subsidies allow them to do so, usually in the form of a protected monopoly/oligopoly or by excessive regulatory action presenting a nigh-insurmountable barrier to entry.

But go on thinking government is the solution to all that ails you. Knock yourself right out on that one.

I'm always looking for a new idea that will be more productive than its cost. -- David Rockefeller