Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

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:it could have been an accident (Score 1) 697

by Catbeller (#49350293) Attached to: Germanwings Plane Crash Was No Accident

So can unarmed passengers. And unarmed passengers have swarmed hijackers and taken them down. The hijackers' weapons (knives) are useless if dozens of people jump them. The doors didn't save the planes, the people did. And recall, the one plane on 9-11 that didn't kill people on the ground was the one the passengers fought back on. If they'd done it earlier, they may have lived. Dunno. But sitting still doesn't help at all. And armed passengers would shoot holes in the fuselage and other passengers, and in the melee the plane may crash. Use your hands. Can't blow out the pressure with your hands.

Numbers win against guns, if people know they will die if they don't fight. Best thing to stop a gun-toting idiot menacing a crowd? Crowd jumps him.Works every time. You personally can't, but three dozen of you can. Go for the guns first, grab those lovingly polished killing machines by the barrels and push them up/down and out of line, grab the hands, then his arms, and then pinch his corneas really hard and rip them out. He'll have second thoughts after that. Then kill him at your leisure. Or you can get really a good communal grip and rip his arms off. Or snap his neck. So many ways to make him stop dreaming of killing with his penis enhancing boom stick. Think communist Batman. Batman has the strength of one supremely trained indvidual, but you all have the strength of three dozen fat people who are REALLY scared and TOTALLY pissed.

Comment: Re:What, no link to a hoax news site in there? (Score 0) 697

by Catbeller (#49350119) Attached to: Germanwings Plane Crash Was No Accident

Damned near every terrorist attack in the US has been end-times or anti-government christian cultists of one sort or another. Or racist cults. Or anti-tax cults. And we don't have anyone assigned to keep track of them. I blame Obama for caving in to the Republicans on this one. Doctor killers, Dominionists, Sovereign Citizens, this-land-is-ours loonies pointing guns at sherriffs from high ground WHILE ON LIVE ON CAMERA, and nothing happens and no one gets arrested, because everyone is afraid of them and their supporters. We don't even report on them.

But if a guy with a beard does it, on the news forever. Hell, the HS guys claiming someone was GOING TO join ISIS because reasons is national news for days. Every damned day it seems.

Comment: Astounding that you didn't know about this. (Score 1) 697

by Catbeller (#49350025) Attached to: Germanwings Plane Crash Was No Accident

Astounding that you didn't know about this. If they had been Muslims, it would have been world news.
And, I win.
I correct myself: I am ABSOLUTELY astounded how little coverage this gets. ASTOUNDED. And this is me we're talking about.

http://www.christianpost.com/n...
http://www.azcentral.com/story...
http://boingboing.net/2015/03/...
http://www.usatoday.com/story/...
http://www.charismanews.com/us...
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/new...

Comment: Re:fathers (Score 1) 299

by Catbeller (#49345313) Attached to: Scientists: It's Time To Resolve the Ethics of Editing Human Genome

The White Plague, by Frank Herbert. An SF novel I made a rule never to mention online because it would give people ideas. A lone scientist splices a killer virus with a XX-chromosome seeking component and kills half the distaff half of the human race. And now, it can happen. Say, putting influenze together with HIV and letting fly. The possibilities are infinite, and you are right, someone will try.

Comment: Re:Wouldn't normally say this but (Score 1) 697

by Catbeller (#49345145) Attached to: Germanwings Plane Crash Was No Accident

Ever watch House? There are dozens of ways to physiologically fail into a psychotic or unconscious state that don't have to do with personality. We are meat. We may never know what happened up there. It may make no sense - a fungus or a genetic weakness that just happened at the wrong damned time.
What we need is three flight deck personnel, not two. We've two because we've cost cut our way into a robot plane with one pilot, at times.

Comment: Re:This validates the US policy... (Score 1) 697

by Catbeller (#49345081) Attached to: Germanwings Plane Crash Was No Accident

Rules will always fail. Procedure can always be hacked. And was, you may notice. If it was a suicidal pilot, he could have tricked the the FA into leaving. Maybe he did. No matter how many attempts to manage humans, there can never be enough rules, and never a lack of ways to beat those rules.

Best way to have prevented this would be to NOT HAVE a door that locks out the rest of the plane. Let 9-11 go; that trick won't work again.
Another way? Airlines have cut cockpit crew numbers from 3 (pilot, co-pilot, navigator) to 2 (pilot/copilot) to save money, increase profits and break the unions. That MAY have more than a little to do with the fact that only one member of the flight team is present in the cockpit at times. We've cost cut our way into cheap fares and food-stamp-pilots.... and planes so short staffed that the illness of a single person can kill everyone.

Comment: Re:Be careful of the term "terrorist attack" (Score 4, Interesting) 697

by Catbeller (#49345007) Attached to: Germanwings Plane Crash Was No Accident

A couple of days ago, a Christian musician family in Phoneix (I think) went obviously nuts and engaged in a massive firefight with police in a big box parking lot they were camping in. Their entire repetoir was about Jesus coming and the End Times - and I'm guessing, since they were all armed, they were the US Government-Obama-is-Satan cultists that are extremely pervasive in the Confederacy (the West is just the suburbs of the Confederacy, has been since the end of the civil war). We have a gigantic armed cult of doomsdayer Dominionists dispersed throughout the country, and the FBI taskforce that monitored it was taken down at the insistence of Congressional confederate Republicans. Our loonies wear ties and Glocks and praise Jesus and fear the negro President. Not even a little bit hyperbolic.

Comment: Re:Reminds me of one thing (Score 1) 697

by Catbeller (#49344911) Attached to: Germanwings Plane Crash Was No Accident

As you noted, we really don't have self-driving cars. Here and there, a self-driving *car*, under escort. SD cars are something Google wants, and now everyone is trying to jump in on the idea, but it really won't work. Most will work, but the failures will be huge. Our capacity for denial will have to ramp up.

Comment: Re:Security is hard... (Score 4, Insightful) 697

by Catbeller (#49344701) Attached to: Germanwings Plane Crash Was No Accident

Zero. The 9-11 attacks worked because no one expected the hijackers were intending to suicide all along. We now know it, and they cannot hijack planes and succeed anymore, as no one will cooperate.The entire plane would swarm them, and rightly so. So they don't hijack. Zero hijackings prevented, not because of protocols, but because it's damned impossible to succeed, even without steel doors. We've overreacted, and now we've lost an actual plane because of the totally safe terrorism doors that even the commander can't open. Sigh.

Comment: War on terror update part 2 (Score 1) 697

by Catbeller (#49344061) Attached to: Germanwings Plane Crash Was No Accident

Well, another fine mess you've got us into, anti-bearded-terrorist mass hysteria. Surely no one could have anticipated a suicidal or ill pilot locking the other pilot out of the cockpit. A german pilot, so not a terrorist, of course. Need a beard for that.

Don't bother modding me down, Fox News enthusiasts, I can post again, and yet again.

Comment: Safe from the bearded evil ones (Score 1, Insightful) 697

by Catbeller (#49343839) Attached to: Germanwings Plane Crash Was No Accident

Well, another fine mess you've got us into, anti-bearded-terrorist mass hysteria. Surely no one could have anticipated a suicidal or ill pilot locking the other pilot out of the cockpit. A german pilot, so not a terrorist, of course. Need a beard for that.

Don't bother modding me down, Fox News enthusiasts, I can post again.

Earth

How 'Virtual Water' Can Help Ease California's Drought 413

Posted by timothy
from the it's-as-if-prices-conveyed-information dept.
HughPickens.com writes Bill Davidow And Michael S. Malone write in the WSJ that recent rains have barely made a dent in California's enduring drought, now in its fourth year. Thus, it's time to solve the state's water problem with radical solutions, and they can begin with "virtual water." This concept describes water that is used to produce food or other commodities, such as cotton. According to Davidow and Malone, when those commodities are shipped out of state, virtual water is exported. Today California exports about six trillion gallons of virtual water, or about 500 gallons per resident a day. How can this happen amid drought? The problem is mispricing. If water were priced properly, it is a safe bet that farmers would waste far less of it, and the effects of California's drought—its worst in recorded history—would not be so severe. "A free market would raise the price of water, reflecting its scarcity, and lead to a reduction in the export of virtual water," say Davidow and Malone. "A long history of local politics, complicated regulation and seemingly arbitrary controls on distribution have led to gross inefficiency."

For example, producing almonds is highly profitable when water is cheap but almond trees are thirsty, and almond production uses about 10% of California's total water supply. The thing is, nuts use a whole lot of water: it takes about a gallon of water to grow one almond, and nearly five gallons to produce a walnut. "Suppose an almond farmer could sell real water to any buyer, regardless of county boundaries, at market prices—many hundreds of dollars per acre-foot—if he agreed to cut his usage in half, say, by drawing only two acre-feet, instead of four, from his wells," say the authors. "He might have to curtail all or part of his almond orchard and grow more water-efficient crops. But he also might make enough money selling his water to make that decision worthwhile." Using a similar strategy across its agricultural industry, California might be able to reverse the economic logic that has driven farmers to plant more water-intensive crops. "This would take creative thinking, something California is known for, and trust in the power of free markets," conclude the authors adding that "almost anything would be better, and fairer, than the current contradictory and self-defeating regulations."
Earth

Meet the Carolina Butcher, a 9-Foot Crocodile That Walked On Two Legs 45

Posted by timothy
from the you-too-can-taste-like-chicken dept.
HughPickens.com writes Science News reports on the Carolina Butcher, a giant, bipedal reptile that looked a lot like living crocodiles — except it walked on two legs, not four. Carnufex carolinensis is one of the oldest and largest crocodile ancestors identified to date. Its size and stature also suggest that for a time, the Carolina Butcher (named for its menacing features), was one of the top predators in the part of the supercontinent Pangaea that became North America. Past fossil finds show that cousins of ancient crocodiles were vying with the earliest bipedal dinosaurs, called theropods, for the title of top predator in the southern regions of Pangaea but the Carolina Butcher's reign probably ended 201 million years ago when a mass extinction event wiped out most large, land-based predators, clearing the way for dinosaurs to fully dominate during the Jurassic period. Carnufex is one of the most primitive members of the broad category of reptiles called crocodylomorphs, encompassing the various forms of crocs that have appeared on Earth. "As one of the earliest and oldest crocodylomorphs, Carnufex was a far cry from living crocodiles. It was an agile, terrestrial predator that hunted on land," says Lindsay Zanno. "Carnufex predates the group that living crocodiles belong to." Transported back to the Triassic Period, what would a person experience upon encountering this agile, roughly three metre-long, about 1.5 metre-tall beast with a long skull and blade-like teeth? "Abject terror," says Zanno.

With your bare hands?!?

Working...