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Comment: Re:Backward-thinking by the DMV (Score 1) 506

by skaralic (#47760051) Attached to: California DMV Told Google Cars Still Need Steering Wheels

Look at the deaths per vehicle miles travelled chart of Wikipedia. I would say humans as drivers are doing very well, helped by better cars, roads and technology over time.

How about a dual-mode car. You can drive it yourself in the city and have the computer drive it on the highway (like an autopilot). In many ways the highway is a simpler problem for the computer to handle and much more efficiency can be gained from higher speeds and shorter distances between following cars. Of course, the highway would allow the system to fail more spectacularly as well when a few hundred cars going 200kph (120mph) pile into each other.

Comment: Re:Angry Proliferation Game (Score 1) 224

by skaralic (#47584579) Attached to: China Confirms New Generation of ICBM

Nuclear proliferation is becoming to sound like the plot to some absurdist classic Star Trek episode.

The leaders of all the planets' nations sit in a room, arrayed in a circle. The room is white and completely bare, except for their chairs, and in the center of the room a single gleaming, chromed post rising from the floor about 3 feet tall. Atop the shiny post is a single large, tennis-ball sized red button.

It is widely accepted among all the leaders that pressing the button activates a mechanism that destroys the planet. Yet this doesn't stop them from rising from their chairs, and arguing - yelling, taunting even - other leaders around the circle, so enraging them that at times several of them are close to snapping, rushing forward and pounding the red button.

Because at the end of the day, the leaders are all flawed human beings, driven by the psychological baggage of behavioral evolutionary holdovers, cultural and religious constructs, and overwhelmingly the inability to view the other participants in the room as peers equally deserving of resources as the tribes represented by the leaders.

Sooner or later, someone - in a moment of hubris, misplaced confidence in their own technology or military, or religious zeal - is going to dash out of their chair and smack that button.

I would venture to guess that the leaders peddling this stuff rarely believe their own propaganda. It's marketing to get their people's support and posturing for the other guy's people. They just have to make sure they don't whip the locals up into such a frenzy that they do elect someone who believes it.

Comment: Re: Hmmm (Score 1) 205

by skaralic (#47503165) Attached to: New Toyota Helps You Yell At the Kids

Not good enough... we also traded in the minivan when the kids were a bit older, but our small SUVs only get around 23MPG... I'd traded in my 93 Civic that routinely got over 35MPG, now you don't even get that in a Civic or other small car without it being a hybrid or something... with very few exceptions. I may get a Mazda 3 or 6, though. They get upwards of 35.

I will say this, though, to actually contribute to the conversation about minivans... I had no problem driving one, and felt no stigma about it. All the people buying giant SUVs and justifying it because hey, once or twice a year they may buy a big box item and save on delivery! Or they need to carry a lot of passengers... Our Honda Odyssey carried 7 people a lot more comfortably than any SUV I've been in, and when you needed cargo space it was right up there with the big boys when you folded the rear seat down... even more than a lot of big SUVs; add decent towing capacity and overall better mileage, and the only reason for most people not to get one was the "stigma." Unless you're towing a yacht, or need to go off roading, a good (200hp+) minivan is a much more logical choice.

Most people do not think logically when buying a car. It is based much more on emotions, for better or worse.

Comment: Re: Question (Score 1) 299

by skaralic (#47379175) Attached to: Site of 1976 "Atomic Man" Accident To Be Cleaned

Sex symbol.

Like Henry Kissinger.

Henry Kissinger
How I'm missing yer
You're the Doctor of my dreams
With your crinkly hair and your glassy stare
And your machiavellian schemes
I know they say that you are very vain
And short and fat and pushy but at least you're not insane
Henry Kissinger
How I'm missing yer
And wishing you were here

Henry Kissinger
How I'm missing yer
You're so chubby and so neat
With your funny clothes and your squishy nose
You're like a German parakeet
All right so people say that you don't care
But you've got nicer legs than Hitler
And bigger tits than Cher
Henry Kissinger
How I'm missing yer
And wishing you were here

Comment: Re:Thanks for the tip! (Score 1) 448

by skaralic (#47309093) Attached to: $500k "Energy-Harvesting" Kickstarter Scam Unfolding Right Now

Or not. I'm sorry, I don't trust kick starter campaigns.

Right? I gave Toad the Wet Sprocket $50 for their new record. Then it arrived as double LP with four bonus tracks! If I wanted bonus tracks I would asked for freakin' bonus tracks! And don't get me started about that photo essay book I bought into. It was so good I almost cried. If I want to feel stuff I'll give to an Indiegogo campaign!

Rex Stardust, lead electric triangle with Toad the Wet Sprocket has had to have an elbow removed following their recent successful worldwide tour of Finland. Flamboyant ambidextrous Rex apparently fell off the back of a motorcycle. "Fell off the back of a motorcyclist, most likely," quipped ace drummer Jumbo McCluney upon hearing of the accident. Plans are already afoot for a major tour of Iceland.

So excited!!

Comment: We've been here before... (Score 1) 339

by skaralic (#47115329) Attached to: The Singularity Is Sci-Fi's Faith-Based Initiative
In the 60s researchers thought that "machines will be capable, within twenty years, of doing any work a man can do" and "within a generation ... the problem of creating 'artificial intelligence' will substantially be solved". Pretty soon they realized that they were way off in their predictions. Our machines are much faster today but other than some limited machine learning algos, we haven't really moved that much. Every new generation thinks the breakthrough is just around the corner.

Comment: Re:Terminology (Score 1) 140

by skaralic (#46525267) Attached to: Enlightenment E19 To Have Full Wayland Support
Yep, running it at work and at home. I have it configured with a lot of custom keybindings which make it very fast and comfortable to use. E is fast on all manner of hardware and most of my machines are older so its a good fit. When I got a brand new laptop (T530) I figured I would try the latest desktops out there including Cinnamon and Unity. They are definitely more friendly but even on a brand new, well-spec'd machine, I found them laggy and unresponsive compared to E on an older machine. Of course, I do come from a WindowMaker background so I'm used to fast desktops...

Comment: Re:Good for E! (Score 1) 89

by skaralic (#46233679) Attached to: Enlightenment E19 Pre-Alpha Released

I'd love to see E succeed after all these years of promise. But I installed from Debian some time ago and it immediately crashed (E17).

I tried Bodhi in its 2.0 version (E17), and the file manager crashed on certain themes, but the DE didn't go down.

Perhaps the E-team could make a truly stable version before moving on to more esoteric goals?

Please? I'm so tired of XFCE....and too old for blackbox.

So what you are saying... is that it's as good as the other Linux DEs out there!

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work. I want to achieve immortality through not dying. -- Woody Allen