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Comment: Re:Occam's Razor - PR stunt (Score 2) 273

by rwa2 (#48670617) Attached to: Did North Korea Really Attack Sony?

Yeah, I'm with you here. I'm sure it's more likely that this is a PR stunt gone wild and we all fell for it. Even the POTUS fell for it. Before this, I hadn't even heard of the studio, much less the movie.

Let's see...

  * Sony was already in panic mode after their security breach. This sure took the new spotlight off of that.

  * OK, movie is coming out now... oh, no, no it isn't, it's too dangerous! ("ooh, forbidden fruit! No one wants to SEE a BANNED movie, do you?")

  * media goes nuts. POTUS makes a statement. NK kicked off the internets.

  * OK, sure, you can watch the movie, but ONLY in SELECT THEATERS NEAR YOU!

  * Sounds like NK pretty much held to their party line of "huh? We didn't do it! But whatever it was, I bet you deserved it, you capitalist swine!"

suckers :P

Comment: Re:WTF UK? (Score 1, Offtopic) 349

by rwa2 (#48669661) Attached to: UK Man Arrested Over "Offensive" Tweet

Quit trolling, GP never said anything about the US being a paragon of free speech protections.

Yep. The US Government is usually far behind most technological trends, but you can bet there's a good reason that the US has been archiving every tweet to the Library of Congress. They may not be using it for witchhunts right at this moment, but you can bet your keister it's gonna be trawled big-time for political fodder whenever it's expedient to perform a good ol' fashioned character assassination or simply to throw someone in jail.

Comment: Safari 8.0.2 and Slashdot (Score 1) 112

by rwa2 (#48662313) Attached to: Apple Pushes First Automated OS X Security Update

I suppose this thread is as as close as I'll get... Anyone else have high CPU displaying Slashdot on Safari?

I usually keep /. open all day in a tab, but lately I've occasionally been getting /. tabs burning through all of my CPU on some tabs, according to ActivityMonitor. I assume it has something to do with the new ads, since it's intermittent, but it's been difficult to flag exactly which ad content has been causing this. Just updated to Safari 8.0.2 this morning, and it's still occurring.

Usually use Safari instead of Chrome since the battery life is supposedly better, but certainly not with this issue :P But at this point, I'd sooner stop keeping /. open than change browsers. :/

Comment: Re:Public land closures (Score 1) 48

by rwa2 (#48660349) Attached to: Hot Springs At Yellowstone Changed Their Color Due To Tourist Activity

Geysir was clogged in the 1950s before the jet age, so it probably wasn't too very many American tourists.

Iceland destroyed half their geysers all by themselves for geothermal power plants:
http://www.nps.gov/yell/planyo...

The US made a strong showing too, but both are far behind New Zealand.

Comment: Re:Public land closures (Score 1) 48

by rwa2 (#48655681) Attached to: Hot Springs At Yellowstone Changed Their Color Due To Tourist Activity

Yep... we did Yellowstone a few years ago, and it was certainly the most crowded, commercialized, and overrated national park we've visited.

Yellowstone covers 2,219,791 acres. You didn't see Yellowstone, you saw the crowded, commercialized, and famous segments of Yellowstone. I spent a week hiking there one year and the only other people within 3 miles of the trails I took were the rest of the group I went with. Also, I know there is MUCH more to Yellowstone than I've seen in about 4 visits (each roughly a week long, and each geographically overlapping only on visiting the Old Faithful Inn once each trip).

True that... we only spent 2 days driving around the main loop and didn't have time for a real hike, since we still had the rest of Wyoming between us and our flight out. But still, the fact remains that we wanted to spend more time at just about all the parks we visited (RMNP, Black Canyon of the Gunnison, Arches, Canyonlands, National Reef, Fruita, Zion), but after a day at Yellowstone we just wanted to get back out to Grand Teton NP. I'm sure the wilderness away from the beaten path are awesome, but it's probably going to be some time before we bother trying to go back.

Comment: Re:Public land closures (Score 1) 48

by rwa2 (#48655095) Attached to: Hot Springs At Yellowstone Changed Their Color Due To Tourist Activity

Yep... we did Yellowstone a few years ago, and it was certainly the most crowded, commercialized, and overrated national park we've visited.

OTOH, it's also the park most likely to self-correct when the supervolcano blows, so there might be some value in allowing it to keep it's most-visited status if only to reduce traffic to other national parks.

We went there as part of a big loop, flying in/out of Denver and taking 2 weeks to camp at every national / state park, from RMNP to Zion, then up to Yellowstone. The parks in Colorado and southern Utah were amazing, as was Grand Teton NP just south of Yellowstone. Yellowstone was all traffic, no camping availability (had to hit the most expensive motel I've ever stayed at on the Montana side... to be fair our timing was bad and we arrived on the weekend), and the attractions were neat, but not much more impressive than anything we had already seen in Iceland. OK, OK, the jumping mud pits were extremely cute, but the geysers and hot pools in Iceland were much more regular and impressive, especially Geysir where you could walk right up to within a few feet, with nothing but a little velvet rope between you and the maw, and it would go off every 5 minutes instead of an hour like Ol' Faithful (which, admittedly, we didn't wait for).

But of course, even in Iceland, there was another geyser a few meters away that was cordoned off and shut down, because it was also clogged up with trash and junk that people had tossed in to try to trigger an eruption.

+ - Problem Solver Beer Tells How Much to Drink to Boost Your Creativity

Submitted by mrspoonsi
mrspoonsi (2955715) writes "When you've been stuck on a problem or that creative spark just won't come, the chances are you've turned to a cup of coffee to get things moving. A quick java infusion can certainly help, but studies also suggest that alcohol can also have a positive impact on your creative cognition. University of Illinois Professor Jennifer Wiley determined that a person's "creative peak" comes when their blood alcohol level reaches 0.075, lowering their ability to overthink during a task. Medical Daily reports that marketing agency CP+B Copenhagen and Danish brewery Rocket Brewing wanted to help drinkers reach their imaginative prime, so they decided to create their own beer to do just that. The result is he Problem Solver. It's a 7.1 percent craft IPA that its makers say offers a "refined bitterness with a refreshing finish." To ensure you reach the optimum creative level, the bottle includes a scale, which determines how much of the beer you need to drink based on your body weight. The agency does offer a word of warning though: "Enjoying the right amount will enhance your creative thinking. Drinking more will probably do exactly the opposite.""

Comment: Moodle (Score 1) 2

by rwa2 (#48623963) Attached to: what is best way to build a site for course content dissemination?

I've set up these moodle sites for my wife for her classes:
https://moodle.org/

It's a snap to set up, and can be as simple or featureful as you're comfortable with. She says it's a lot easier to use than the commercial options like Blackboard as well, so she would use our own Moodle site even when her schools had some other thing paid for and available.

As for my own volunteer classes, I just rock it old school with an html page on my server in emacs in a persistent screen session.

Comment: Re:... or a brilliant PR move. (Score 1) 586

by rwa2 (#48623933) Attached to: Top Five Theaters Won't Show "The Interview" Sony Cancels Release

So the irony is that I actually worked for Disney for a few years. So yes, I did go to the theater to see some of their stuff in the past decade, but only because the company gave us tickets for lack of any other perks in our area. And yes, I do get caught up by watching movies on long airplane trips every so often, so I did see parts of Gravity and Elysium and Transformers and the thing with Smaug. But the discount airline we fly has a really crappy DVR system that apparently can't handle VBR streams very well, so it would just start stuttering and skipping over any action sequences with lots of motion.

Yeah, I don't have a TV either, so the other irony is that I worked on designing and building multi-million dollar AV systems for distributed Command and Control theaters.

But whatever, it doesn't count since we spent plenty of time binge-watching serials back when we had Netflix, so just forget I said anything that might have obliquely supported the bit about the PR move :P

Comment: Re:As with all space missions: (Score 1) 200

by rwa2 (#48618775) Attached to: NASA Study Proposes Airships, Cloud Cities For Venus Exploration

I hate to bring politics into a science discussion, but unfortunately politics is what determines funding. And politics is what put humans on the moon.

Yes, putting humans anywhere in space (or anywhere hostile to biological habitation) is basically a super-expensive camping trip. That never stopped us in the past from building capsules that can take humans to the bottom of the oceans or hurtling across the skies or stationed at the south pole and other places where robots could do the job just as well or better.

Politically, will countries / corporations be able to "own" the resources (or even just the science / IP) discovered in space without a human presence to plant a flag and occupy? I mean, we're not to that level of competition yet, but say sometime in the future when we're mining asteroids and there's a really valuable asteroid that everyone's trying to claim. Would we consider it legal for the first mining robot to arrive to claim the entire thing? Or is it fair game for whichever robot gets there first to take their fill? Is it an act of war for a robot to knock out / disable a competing country's robot? It obviously is if you're knocking out a human-inhabited space colony, but otherwise you're just squabbling over money.

Anyway, I'm glad that NASA is doing the math on what is at this point just a proposal / thought exercise. No harm in having thought things through, in the off-chance that Venus was suddenly struck with a strong case of unobtanium-fever.

BASIC is to computer programming as QWERTY is to typing. -- Seymour Papert

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