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Journal: Mars, Ho! Chapter Fifteen

Journal by mcgrew

I started the long walk back to the pilot room wishing again for a bicycle or something.
A robot wheeled past. Hell, I should just flag down a robot. But, of course there was a reason for not having transportation; I remembered the climb up the boat when the whores locked me out and how tiring it was. A body needs exercise and the most I was going to get on a boat with two-thirds gravity was walking.

Comment: Re:That micro-floppy (Score 1) 268

>I think the progression was something like: PCMCIA->CF->MMC->SD, and USB Flash (and other stuff like Sony's MemoryStick) branched off around the same time as MMC.

It's possible that this was a South African magazine - at the time laptops (and thus PCMCIA ports) were pretty much the exclusive terain of executives here - normal folk (even in companies) had desktops.

I do remember that the article itself concluded that the most likely winner was going to be JAZ Zipdrives... instead they died a quiet death not long after.

Comment: Re:That micro-floppy (Score 3, Informative) 268

> signposts the idea of miniature storage.

Indeed, it is still the standard icon for "Save file to disk" almost 2 decades since the most likely disk destination became "the hard drive".

I remember back in 1998/1999 somewhere one computer magazine ran an article on "what will replace the floppy disk" ? Many ideas were touted, in subsequent letters most readers were betting the farm on ever-cheaper and faster rewriteable optical media as cd-burners got cheaper too.
Nobody saw the USB flask coming until it was upon us - let alone it's more recent offspring like the MicroSD.

User Journal

Journal: The third time wasn't a charm.

Journal by mcgrew

I've hardly logged on to the internet at all this past week, too busy correcting a mistake software houses frequently do: Trying to rush a project out the door. The fact is, I'm tired of The Paxil Diaries, but I don't want to ship a flawed piece of crap.

Comment: Re:Why do people listen to her? (Score 1) 581

by silentcoder (#46748823) Attached to: Jenny McCarthy: "I Am Not Anti-Vaccine'"

Not to mention:
*Measles is fatal in a significant minority of cases - an immune herd rules out those cases being exposed before vaccination.
*The people most likely to have side effects from vaccination are the ones who also need it most - they are the people who will DIE if they get the REAL thing.


Mathematicians Use Mossberg 500 Pump-Action Shotgun To Calculate Pi 303

Posted by samzenpus
from the less-common-core-math dept.
KentuckyFC (1144503) writes "Imagine the following scenario. The end of civilization has occurred, zombies have taken over the Earth and all access to modern technology has ended. The few survivors suddenly need to know the value of pi and, being a mathematician, they turn to you. What do you do? According to a couple of Canadian mathematicians, the answer is to repeatedly fire a Mossberg 500 pump action shotgun at a square aluminum target about 20 meters away. Then imagine that the square is inscribed with an arc drawn between opposite corners that maps out a quarter circle. If the sides of the square are equal to 1, then the area of the quarter circle is pi/4. Next, count the number of pellet holes that fall inside the area of the quarter circle as well as the total number of holes. The ratio between these is an estimate of the ratio between the area of the quarter circle and the area of a square, or in other words pi/4. So multiplying this number by 4 will give you an estimate of pi. That's a process known as a Monte Carlo approximation and it is complicated by factors such as the distribution of the pellets not being random. But the mathematicians show how to handle these too. The result? According to this method, pi is 3.13, which is just 0.33 per cent off the true value. Handy if you find yourself in a post-apocalyptic world."

Comment: Re:Sex discrimination. (Score 1) 673

by silentcoder (#46713753) Attached to: Google: Teach Girls Coding, Get $2,500; Teach Boys, Get $0

>Equal opportunity laws already reach such an insane level around here that jobs that can only be done by a certain gender still have to be offered "gender neutral". Dare to show openly that you'd rather hire a man than a woman and be prepared to be sued into oblivion.

You're going to have to give me some examples here because I can't think of a single job that where your capacity to do it is determined by your gender except maybe "wet nurse" and that's hardly a lucrative field these days (not to mention - with modern technology quite feasible for a man to do - they have all the required body parts - they just need the hormones - alcoholics frequently lactate because their damaged livers can no longer filter out their naturally produced progresterone and the build up activates their mammary glands).

Seriously what possible job could be done by only a certain gender ? In fact the concept makes NO sense since gender is a socially defined concept with no physical reality to it at all - even if I assume that when you said "gender" you meant to say "sex" (which is a physical thing) I STILL can't come up with any examples.

Comment: Re:Mirror image (Score 1) 639

>How wrong you are - where I live Muslims are the majority

That doesn't mean you know any of them. In fact - if you express the kind of opinions to them that you express here - then I would be quite surprised if any of them ever wanted to hang out with you, it would be like a black guy going out for a beer with the grand dragon of the KKK.

Comment: Re:Mirror image (Score 5, Insightful) 639

None of the 35 million Muslims in my city have ever celebrated an atrocity, none of their priests have ever encouraged anybody to do the same. In fact - you walk into a Muslim owned shop here you will see signs on the walls that say things like:

Encouraging each other to live in peace with the non-muslim community here ( which is only slightly smaller at around 30 million the vast majority of whom are protestant Christians and who have their shops decorated with signs that spread the same message in the name of Jesus instead) - these communities live among each other, with each other, in perfect peace and harmony - both are convinced that the other's religion is wrong but neither group thinks violence is justified or allowed and in fact both groups spend most of their time trying to convert the other by competing over who can do the most charity for the poor population of the city !

The deadliest religious atrocity we have are pot luck dinners ! The worst problem we face is that these two religions are VERY happy to cooperate on the things they agree on - which means a constant stream of political jockeying against our laws allowing gay marriage and legal abortions which is funded and attended by both groups. A current law banning corporal punishment is being vehemently opposed by religious leaders- FROM BOTH religions, working TOGETHER.
These aren't good things to be doing -but it's interesting that they are quite happy to put aside their differences and lobby collectively for the things they agree on (even when those things are wrong).

I LIVE among the proof of how wrong you are.

The only thing I can conclude from your Islamophobia is that you don't actually, personally, KNOW a single Muslim. Not really *know*.
Like all discrimination - Islamophobia can ONLY exist in ignorance.

Comment: Re:Mirror image (Score 4, Informative) 639

"She is but 14 years old"
"And younger than her are happy mothers made"

William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliette.

That's Renaissance England - and it remained common until the early 20th century. The REAL reason it changed was World War 1- with most of the young men gone to war for several years, women had to take over the work-force and do so without many potential suitors around.

Comment: Re:Mirror image (Score 2) 639

>And since when do two wrongs make a right?
It doesn't - it was wrong when Christians did it, it was wrong when Pagans did it, it was wrong when Muslims did.

>Tu quoque is such a transparent line of reasoning...

It's only Tu quoque is you claim it excuses something - it's not Tu Quoque if you point out that this was the historical context - failing to view historical events through the lens of historical context is GUARANTEED to give you stupid answers.

>Also, check your history knowledge - in the 1st half of the 7th century, a large portion of Europe wasn't Christian in the first place

I was reffering specifically TO the parts that WERE - and also pointed out that these REMAINED Christians standards all the way up to the early 20th century !

>The majority, in fact, if I recall correctly.

I doubt this. The first Christian king of Poland was crowned in the 7th century.

Comment: Re:Mirror image (Score 2) 639

>Uhm you might want to look at the causes of these incidents. Typical Muslim reaction - try to eradicate non muslims then complain that they fight back!

Funny how you ignored the Anders Breivik example - suffice to say I think that these - like ALL wars have no innocent parties, both sides have equal share in the atrocity.
Why would I have a Muslim reaction ? I'm not a Muslim, I'm not a Christian either - I'm a completely neutral observer here, so accusing me of bias is rather silly.

That said - if Christians are "fighting back" that violates a tenet of their religion. Aren't they supposed to "love their enemy" and "turn the other cheek" ?
Funny how throughout history and to this day they all seem to revert to "eye for an eye" whenever they have a way to claim an eye.

Point: there is no such thing as a non-violent religion. Islamophobia is not rational because a phobia, by definition, is not rational.

Comment: Re:Mirror image (Score 3, Insightful) 639

>The obvious problem (unless you are one of those Muslims who think that anything that has ever been done by a non-Muslim at any time in history should be permitted for Muslims today) is that Muslims are still carrying out brutal attacks, raping women, etc today. Just ask the Hindus in Pakistan about the 'religion of peace'.

Christians are still doing that today as well. Ask the non-Christians in Nigeria, Sudan and Algiers a little about the religion of universal-brotherly-love.
Hell even in Europe you still see atrocities committed by people fueled by their Christian beliefs. Remember the Olso shootings a few years ago ? Man grabbed a gun and shot 12 kids because they were liberals and as a Christian he believed he ought to fight (literally) against liberalism !

You can't judge a religion on the actions of extremists. I live in a majority Muslim city - and I have never experienced any violence from a Muslim, indeed they are the most law-abiding demographic in this city.

"Love is an ideal thing, marriage a real thing; a confusion of the real with the ideal never goes unpunished." -- Goethe