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Comment: 99.9999% of sites have 1-3 servers per continent (Score 2) 52

Of the just over 1 billion web sites currently online, fewer than 0.000001% have more than 3 servers per CONTINENT. To have a server in each province / state would increase the costs several thousandfold.

There are about ten web sites in the world that could actually have servers in thousands of locations without going bankrupt.

There is a reason your neighborhood street that you live on isn't 2,000 miles long. It connects to a minor collector (street with several stop signs), which then connects to a major collector (street with a few stop signs), which then connects to an arterial (street with stop lights), which connects to a major arterial (three or more lanes each way), which then connects to a freeway, which then connects to an interstate. Streets are laid out like that because a hierarchy of larger and larger paths is the only halfway efficient way to move stuff from any house in the country to any other house. That's just as true with digital stuff - it only works when you put fat fiber under the rivers, through the deserts, and over the mountains.

Which means someone has to decide where to spend $20 million on the next chunk of backbone, and someone has to fork over $20 million and hope that it's the right technology, in the right place, at the right time, and implemented properly.

Comment: yeah, meaning toss 75% at a table of four (Score 2) 88

by raymorris (#49600373) Attached to: Humans Dominating Poker Super Computer

Yeah that's a restatement of my first-order analysis. At a table of four, you'll have the best hole cards 25% of the time, so you should fold if your cards aren't in the top 25% of possible pairs. There are patterns you can learn to know approximately how many hands beat yours.

Further analysis brings out the fact that sometimes you can call cheap, get a good flop, then have someone bet large into your strong hand. So if you're playing against a table who bets small preflop and large postflop, you might call more often. On the other hand, if there are several potential raisers behind you, calling the one bet might not let you see the flop without calling more, so you should fold more often rather than getting stuck between multiple raises. It just depends on who you're playing against and your position relative to the button.

Comment: I could do better against chess grandmasters (Score 1) 88

by raymorris (#49600333) Attached to: Humans Dominating Poker Super Computer

> I'm sure if I played 20 top level players in heads up, no limit, I would lose against all 20 by a pretty damn large margin.

Perhaps. Actual tournaments aren't generally heads up, they are 8 to a table, with as many tables as needed. In these actual tournaments, you can easily "beat" over half of the players by simply folding anything but the strongest hands. Source - I've actually done this in WSOP events. You can get "in the money" (win prize money) by simply playing super, super tight, folding 90% of the time or more. Winning first place requires switching to a strategy of taking far more risks. Not unlike investing, actually- most millionaires get there by investing in low risk, broad based mutual funds.

  In chess, you CAN beat half the grandmasters while playing heads up against each of them. Simply copy the your first opponent's move against your second and vice versa. They end up playing each other, with you as the messenger.

Comment: the list of skills is only a general idea of words (Score 1) 226

by raymorris (#49598921) Attached to: Want 30 Job Offers a Month? It's Not As Great As You Think

> The list of skills required is so detailed and complex, it would be very difficult for someone to be a master of everything on that list,

The list of skills isn't things you need to be a master of. In fact, most of the time only about half of the listed words are things you'd be doing on the job. You should, however, know what most of the keywords MEAN. If most of the listed words are in your vocabulary, you can then talk to the hiring manager to find specifically what the job is.

Comment: yep. Calling is wrong 70% of the time. Better is (Score 1) 88

by raymorris (#49598891) Attached to: Humans Dominating Poker Super Computer

Yeah starting out by calling all the time is STUPID. I think this game has four players, so it'll have losing cards 75%. In the first-order analysis, you should therefore fold 75% of the time. Sometimes you should raise, so you should only call about 10%-15% of the time. With further analysis it gets (much) more complicated, but those percentages are in the ballpark.

Their LEARNING algorithm might be good, it might be very good, but they're starting out with a strategy that sucks. Really sucks. They'd probably be much better off starting with a reasonably good strategy, then learning from there.

I made a simple computer poker bot which worked reasonably well, and should work much better than theirs with learning added to it. I used two phases to come up with a set of starting strategies, then played them against each other to determine the winner. First, I analyzed a few hundred thousand hands of actual online poker, ranking each player's cards for strength. I could then see through simple statistics that one should always raise preflop if your hole cards are XY-s or better, for example. That was stage 1.

In stage 2, I modified that base to create a virtual Phil Helmuth (slow plays, etc) and a few others based on actual champion players, just teeaking the basic statistical strategy to play more like the champ it's emulating. Then play the virtual champions against each other. The two virtual champs who come out on top are the seeds for a genetic algorithm to create the strategy you debut against human players.

Comment: Devil's advoct ALL encryption has a good-guy door (Score 1) 172

by raymorris (#49591179) Attached to: FBI Slammed On Capitol Hill For "Stupid" Ideas About Encryption

I agree this is stupid. Sometimes, though, I like to think of the best arguments I can for the other side's position. In other words, come up with reasons I might be wrong.

In this case, I'd have to admit that ANY time I send an encrypted message, it should always have a way for the good guy to read the message. For example, suppose I use https to send a secure request to That must have a way for the good guy,, to read the message. There's no technical reason it can't be encrypted such that TWO good guys have keys, and the Good Guy Bureau.

In fact, standard encryption as used by tls does almost that - two people ALREADY have the key which is used to encrypt the message. The sender has the key and so does the receiver. The shared key is then encrypted by another key generated such that two parties can know it, without either ever transmitting it. Mathematically, one could certainly add the GGB key to the algorithm.

  It could be just as unbreakable as the current encryption standards, though those do depend on keys being kept secret. The Good Guy Key probably wouldn't actually be kept secret for long. That's the huge failing that makes it a non-starter from a purely technical perspective- that we'd all be screwed if the FBI's key were ever revealed or cracked. Various attempts at DRM show that widely-used keys are always cracked.

Comment: On the other hand, on one profile. Also Google Now (Score 3, Interesting) 359

by raymorris (#49558329) Attached to: Google Insiders Talk About Why Google+ Failed

I can appreciate what you're saying. I went the opposite way. I use Android, which means I use Google for maps, search, etc. Therefore, I've decided since Google has a good profile of me, I'll try to limit it to ONLY Google, rather than being thoroughly profiled by several different companies.

As a side benefit, Google Now does some pretty cool stuff as their database begins to have good data about my interests and such.

Comment: 1 flawed car,dead & injured don't join $29 cla (Score 1) 104

by raymorris (#49557241) Attached to: Vizio, Destroyer of Patent Trolls

A _design_ flaw that effects all cars of a particular make is likely to result in a class action. A _manufacturing_ defect that effects only your car, or just a few cars, would be an individual suit, not a class action. Also, a class action is often initiated after an individual suit - a plaintiff shows that the defendant owes them, then lawyers put together class action to represent all similarly affected individuals.

Even when there is a class action first, an individually who has been greatly harmed is unlikely to join the class. I just received a check from a class action against Toyota. The check is for $29. Someone severely injured by the flaw wouldn't have joined the class, they sue individually (and maybe settle after filing suit) to get a more appropriate remedy for their specific situation.

Comment: yes, very common for appeal to instruct on the law (Score 3, Informative) 104

by raymorris (#49551587) Attached to: Vizio, Destroyer of Patent Trolls

The appeals courts generally rule on the LAW, not on the FACTS. So when they overturn a decision they frequently remand it with an instruction (not a request) to decide it in accordance with a specific understanding of the law.

Why send it back rather than just deciding the outcome of the case? Because the appellant ruling on the law may or may not change the outcome of a case. Imagine someone confessed to a murder, and there were also witnesses. The appellant court might rule that as a matter of law the confession is not admissible. They'd remand the case to be tried without the confession. The murderer might well still be convicted based on witness testimony and other evidence. The appeals court doesn't hear from witnesses, they just rule on points of law. The trial court would need to judge guilt or innocence, while following the appellant court's instruction to not play the confession for the jury.

Comment: a customer couldn't sue a car company, or any big (Score 4, Interesting) 104

by raymorris (#49551561) Attached to: Vizio, Destroyer of Patent Trolls

Suppose you bought a car which had a significant safety defect. You sue the car company. After a spending a million dollars on lawyers and experts, the company's lawyers convince the judge that you filed suit in the wrong court, so you lose. Now you owe the car company a million bucks. That type of outcome would happen often enough that it would be very, very rare for anyone to sue someone with more money than they have.

    Instead, the fees are based on fairness- if you file a frivolous suit, you can plan on being ordered to pay the defendant's costs. Also, if you clearly CAUSE a suit, you can be ordered to pay the other party's costs. As an example, suppose you write to the car company asking them to fix the defect, at a cost of $350. They give you the run around for two years, promising to fix it but they never fix it. They admit it's a problem, they admit they caused the problem, but they just won't fix it without being sued. In such a case, you'd probably be awarded costs (and possibly treble damages).

Comment: nice argument, considering the ridiculous proposit (Score 1) 302

Considering how ridiculous the notion is that copyright should last approximately forever, you came up with a pretty good argument. Not a PERSUASIVE argument, of course, but pretty good. Reminds of OJ Simpson's lawyers - there was a ton of evidence against him, so anyone who felt like taking the time to learn about the evidence knew he was guilty; yet his lawyers made arguments good enough to sway some jurors.

Failure is more frequently from want of energy than want of capital.