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Comment: Re:Yes, and? (Score 1) 174

by rioki (#49187143) Attached to: One Year Later, We're No Closer To Finding MtGox's Missing Millions

With Credit Cards, you have a few central banks skimming a huge amount of profit from the bulk of commercial activity, basically inflating costs for all of society. With cash, the government (at taxpayer expense) has to continually print more while exchanging/destroying old notes and simultaneously fighting off counterfeiters. Maybe bitcoin can reduce these overhead costs to society while simultaneously making it easy to conduct a long-distance economic transaction.

I basically agree with you, crypto currency is an interesting vehicle to transfer wealth. But BT is quite wasteful; if you take the amount of energy required and wasted to authenticate each transaction (mining), the drag on society is not fully removed. I would like a crypto currency that is less wasteful. But that is the Catch 22 of crypto currencies. Make the authentication to simple and you are open to abuse, make the authentication hard and you waste lots of resources.

Comment: Re:Yes, and? (Score 2) 174

by rioki (#49187117) Attached to: One Year Later, We're No Closer To Finding MtGox's Missing Millions

The fact that the coins are nearly untraceable is the desired effect

This shows you have NO idea how BT works. The coins are super traceable and that is a feature of BT. Each and every transaction is noted in the public ledger (block chain). You wallet is just a private key (with some meta data). The actual amount in "your possession" is determined by the aggregate of transaction towards your "wallet" (public key). Where pseudonymity comes in to play is associating identities (keys) with real persons, but that has proven time and again to only be relatively thing veil. (Like pseudonyms on the internet in the 90s...)

Comment: Re:Obvious (Score 1) 174

by rioki (#49187099) Attached to: One Year Later, We're No Closer To Finding MtGox's Missing Millions

Although I find your musing interesting... That is not the issue here. All the information for "finding" the missing Bitcoins is public; it is in the public ledger (block chain). You "wallet" is just a private key; granted you can hide that in Mincraft... But the "coins" are not "hidden". The problem with MtGox is that of all the transactions that MtGox did, which are the legitimate ones and the which the fraudulent ones.

Comment: Re:The banned weapons (Score 1) 318

I don't know how summarily executing captured regular combatants works with the Geneva convention. But my guess is that one war crime does not justify an other.

With irregular combatants this may work, but then the restriction on dum dum bullets does not apply anyway... so...

Comment: Re:Take your space (Score 2) 290

by rioki (#49110947) Attached to: How Walking With Smartphones May Have Changed Pedestrian Etiquette

Funny you say that. i have noticed that this depends on the size of the city. For example, I currently live in a medium sized European city (Karlsruhe, Garmany). This is the largest city in the area and as a result many people "go to town"; which results in quite a chaos in down town on a Saturday. The average person is incapable of negotiating a crowded area. In contrast, cities like Paris, Berlin or Munich this was never an issue. The flow of people is almost always running quite smoothly... until a Tourist stumbles on the scene. You also don't see many people using their smartphone while walking; because you can't. If you use your smart phone you either get bumped into or run in front of a tram or bus.

Comment: Re: Good grief... (Score 1) 676

by rioki (#49110457) Attached to: Bill Nye Disses "Regular" Software Writers' Science Knowledge

Although I am not GP, I could affirm the same. I am 32, but I guess with 25 would have been able to do the same. Interestingly I have learned most of it by chance and on the side. The basic idea is every time you have a task, not to learn what it the bare minimum to complete the task, but learn about the background. This will lead you to make better informed decisions at the higher level.

For example if you want to use a SQL database learn about what a DBMS does; learn about storage formats. You don't necessarily need to know exactly how your specific DB does the task, but you will understand why certain classes of queries are slower than others. (In a pinch, you can learn the exact reason why something is really slow; but you will not need start with adam and eve.)

Comment: Re:Good grief... (Score 3, Interesting) 676

by rioki (#49110239) Attached to: Bill Nye Disses "Regular" Software Writers' Science Knowledge

I recon, your hard earned knowledge is only valid for current breed of CPUs. I am fairly certain that with a new CPU design, even if you know the exact ins and outs you would not know what actually is optimal code for that machine.

The interesting part of CPU design is that it is a self reinforcing pattern. CPU designers saw common patterns and started to optimize these. Programmers learned that certain patterns are more performant and started using them more. CPU designers optimized the "common case" further.

The current state of CPUs is so complicated that you can't hardly know all the ramifications of the design. Small changes can bring the entire performance characteristics out of whack. (Like hyper-threading making certain numerical applications slower...)

I am fairly certain that you can not explain why a certain instruction stalls the pipeline. But then you don't need to know, the interesting information is that it does.

Comment: Re:Technology can NOT eliminate work. (Score 1) 389

by rioki (#49079403) Attached to: What To Do After Robots Take Your Job

When most people think about job automation, they think about blue collar jobs being replaced by robots. But actually if you think about it many white collar jobs where eliminated through software before most advanced factory automation became feasible. The only jobs that seem to resist automation are engineers and artists.

The thing is, as many other have pointed out, even though the gap between rich and "poor" is widening, the "poor" are often better off than the middle class three decades ago. The net result of automation is that the average cost of living goes down and so far it has shrunk faster then the average income.

Comment: Re:Don't be so hard on him... (Score 1) 323

by rioki (#49073543) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Are General Engineering Skills Undervalued In Web Development?

Although I don't know about Java (last time I programmed early versions in high school), but I can relate with C#, JavaScript and high level C++. Your assertion is correct, knowing about the metal does not translate to actually being a good programmer. But my experience is that programmers that can program C or ASM on average are the better programmers. My experience that these relatively harsh environments separate the wheat from the chaff. Bad code in C# may manifest as a slow and resource hungry application, but in C it will almost certainly cause subtle memory invalidation. Most people will stop programming low level code for their sanity and only the good programmers remain. Most "modern" languages where designed in a way so that it is really hard to shoot yourself in the foot...

Comment: Re:Sigh... Yet another scam (Score 1) 233

by rioki (#49072815) Attached to: Mars One: Final 100 Candidates Selected

We have a sealed habitat up in orbit around the Earth.

Which took about 20 trips of heavy lifting rocketry to put up there. They do not have the money to put the same size structure on Mars. They never will.

Yes and in addition something of around 10 supply missions per year. Just look at the List of unmanned spaceflights to the International Space Station to get a grasp of how much maintenance is required to keep the ISS running. Not going to happen on mars.

"There is no statute of limitations on stupidity." -- Randomly produced by a computer program called Markov3.