Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


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:Age old story of outsourcing (Score 1) 111

by russotto (#49500047) Attached to: Incorrectly Built SLS Welding Machine To Be Rebuilt

Simple. There probably weren't many who knew both
1) The floor needed reinforcing and
2) It hadn't been done.

Occam's Razor says communications error.

Everyone actually in charge of building the thing would have believed the floor would be adequate. Whoever was in charge overall dropped the ball (maybe misread a statement to the effect "floor shall be reinforced to such-and-such-a-spec" as "floor has been reinforced to such-and-such-a-spec".

Comment: Cursive (Score 1) 65

by tepples (#49499985) Attached to: Google Adds Handwriting Input To Android

Or is recognising and distinguishing between those thousands if not tens of thousands of different Chinese characters really that much easier than the 26 letters (well, make that 52 to account for capitals) in our alphabet?

Joined-up cursive writing in the Latin alphabet is very different from drawing each stroke of a Chinese character. I used to have a Newton MessagePad 2000 and it worked mostly because I stuck to manuscript (separate letters).

Comment: Re:in my opinion this guy is like Jenny McCarthy (Score 2) 216

by mrchaotica (#49499689) Attached to: Columbia University Doctors Ask For Dr. Mehmet Oz's Dismissal

i have no problem with opposing monsanto, the corporation with dubious goals that should be opposed

I want labels on GMO crops because I'm opposed to use of the "terminator gene" and Monsanto's contractual prohibition of seed-saving. I want to be able to buy corn and know it's wasn't grown by a farmer in cahoots with Monsanto, and GMO labeling is a very good proxy to inform me about that.

Comment: Re:This should be amusing (Score 1) 23

by Rei (#49499623) Attached to: Google Ready To Unleash Thousands of Balloons In Project Loon

They talk about how they need to regularly pick up and relaunch balloons when they come down. I don't see why they would need to design the balloons without any sort of reinflation system. The leak rate is tiny, right? So:

1. A little more solar panel area than they already need.
2. Hydrogen filled instead of helium filled.
3. Tiny container of sulfuric acid (hygroscopic - self-dilutes down to a given concentration with atmospheric moisture)
4. Electrolysis cell (sulfuric acid is used as the electrolyte in some types of electrolysis cells).

Problem solved. Sulfuric acid draws moisture from the air, and during the day the solar power electrolyzes it it to produce a minute trickle of hydrogen into the balloon, which replaces the minute trickle that leaks out. Your balloon's lifespan is now as long as your electronics and envelope last.

Comment: Re:What if... (Score 1) 56

by dbIII (#49499509) Attached to: The Origin of the First Light In the Universe

Doesn't quantum theory mean that the above can all be true at the same time?

Not as such on a macro scale.

It's turtles all the way down...

"The Science of Discworld" has a good section on the big bang. For those who haven't read it the book is about comparing science with magical thinking by comparing a very fictional world with reality.

Comment: Re:Pioneers get arrows in back (Score 1) 104

Its a bad idea, full stop. Its a watch that requires a phone to be of any real a time when most under 30 look upon a watch as a throwback to the days of disco.

Both of my boys are in their early 20s, neither have owned a watch...why? Because they have been surrounded by things with clocks built in since birth, that's why. I work less than a mile from the local college so I work around college kids all day...damned near zero watches, why? They already have a smartphone AND a tablet AND a laptop AND a clock in their cars....WTF they need a watch for? Hell I'm nearly 50 and haven't worn a watch in over a decade, the wife is 7 years older than me and doesn't even own one, that is what the phone in her pocket is for.

It just shows IMHO that Apple has run out of ideas as all the previous hits of the past decade plus, iPhone,iPad,iPod,etc were all things that people already used and had uses for that had bad UIs, the watch? The few people I know who refuse to let go of their watches are traditionalists that value things like Swiss movements and have NO desire to add high tech crap to their wrist, the rest? Well as one group of college kids in the shop said when the first talk of iWatches came up "If I have to have my phone...what do I need the watch for?". I couldn't think of an answer then other than "to give something for Apple to sell to hardcore fanboys" and I still can't come up with anything else, as for an ever growing segment of the population a watch belongs next to a rotary phone in the dustbin of history.

Comment: Re:What if... (Score 2) 56

by dbIII (#49499489) Attached to: The Origin of the First Light In the Universe

Why is the light seen as background radiation not from these OTHER big bangs?

Because the math fits the background temperature. It doesn't fit the other ideas suggested so far such as yours.

I mean so wrong that crap has been built on crap that now has become a religion, a test of faith

Don't let your lack of understanding of either religion or science stop you from making such stupid accusations. Is your God so puny that it can be killed by astronomy?

Comment: Re:Did they mention the yummy GMOs (Score 1) 216

by hairyfeet (#49499469) Attached to: Columbia University Doctors Ask For Dr. Mehmet Oz's Dismissal

Look at the circletimessquare account history....its a corp account designed to derail threads, the current clients appear to be Monsanto and any of the oil corps. It goes dead for months,then the "poster" cops a superior attitude and spams if any of the above are the headline (at last count "he" is up to nearly a dozen on this thread) while at almost the same instant a wall of ACs join in to heckle anybody that disagrees.

You might want to look up "how corporations control social media" and you'll see its following the plan to the letter, have 1 account to speak "from authority" on the subject while a wall of ACs parrot agreement while heckling those that disagree, thus causing the majority to go along for fear of being the minority. Its classic psychology 101 stuff.

"No job too big; no fee too big!" -- Dr. Peter Venkman, "Ghost-busters"