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Comment: Re:How hard is it to recognize a stoplight? (Score 1) 280

by ceoyoyo (#48212945) Attached to: Will the Google Car Turn Out To Be the Apple Newton of Automobiles?

Sure you can. Aircraft autopilots have a fairly simple job that needs to be done superbly reliably. Most of the things you've listed are somewhat hard for a human because he has to remember to think about them, like balancing fuel. It's easy to program a computer to always make sure fuel is balanced. So easy, you don't actually need a computer for it. An aircraft autopilot doesn't "need to know physics." It needs to know that with the flaps at 15 degrees the minimum speed is X. Again, that's so simple that aircraft used to implement stall warnings with very simple electronics. Some may have even done it purely mechanically. For the hard part of piloting an aircraft, landing, the autopilot requires external help from instrument landing systems. The big challenge is making sure the human programmers don't screw up while writing the relatively simple code.

You can make a self driving car just as easily if you design the road to go with it. But if you want a self driving car that drives on regular roads you have to do computer vision, which is a lot harder.

Comment: Re:How hard is it to recognize a stoplight? (Score 1) 280

by ceoyoyo (#48212833) Attached to: Will the Google Car Turn Out To Be the Apple Newton of Automobiles?

Betting on unbounded exponential growth is generally not a good idea. Those "computers" you're talking about cost billions, occupy warehouses, and are actually clusters of multiple computers. Clustering doesn't usually follow Moore's law unless the individual processors are doing so.

Processor development is not currently obeying Moore's law (http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-tcoUrJ8CNPk/UsVfZlcA4TI/AAAAAAAAKpk/PdOMedHinN4/s1600/chip2.png). It might be just a matter of waiting for new technology, as has happened in the past, or it might be something more fundamental. We are nearing some fairly hard physical boundaries. There are very different ways of building computers that might get us back on track, but it's not a sure thing.

Comment: Re:Women prefer male bosses (Score 1) 394

by ceoyoyo (#48200883) Attached to: NASA's HI-SEAS Project Results Suggests a Women-Only Mars Crew

I'm not the AC that replied to you. I'm really not a fan of your discussion style so I wasn't going to reply, but I'm also not a fan of the AC's post and I don't really want to be given credit for it.

You'll note that what I said in my post is that single sex groups, of BOTH persuasions, are probably suboptimal. I DID provide you with a NASA review of quite a few scientific studies that suggest that. I recall a study that looked at long term isolated group cohesiveness that found that all-female groups had some significant long term drawbacks. I don't have time to look it up for your pleasure, so yes, it's an anecdote as far as this discussion is concerned.

There are very real differences between sexes besides the obvious physical ones. The politically correct argument is that they are the result of cultural conditioning. It seems unlikely that all differences are due to the environment, although natural tendencies might be exaggerated that way. The majority of the differences are fairly small, smaller than person to person variability. Trying to evaluate individuals based on subtle group-level differences is a pretty stupid thing to do.

If you read carefully, that report I linked for you reviews several studies that suggest men and women approach problems, and generally work, in slightly different ways, and that those differences tend to complement each other. That agrees with the increases in cohesiveness, productivity and performance that is typically found in mixed versus single sex groups, despite the drawbacks.

Comment: Re:Women prefer male bosses (Score 1) 394

by ceoyoyo (#48192111) Attached to: NASA's HI-SEAS Project Results Suggests a Women-Only Mars Crew

I don't have it at hand unfortunately, thus the "IIRC". If you find it, please post it so I can write it down though. As a starting point, I'm pretty sure it was posted on Slashdot a few years ago, possibly around the time that astronaut went nuts and road tripped across the US in a diaper to confront another astronaut she had a thing with.

This (http://history.nasa.gov/SP-4411.pdf) report suggests that mixed groups are likely more productive and cohesive than all-male groups. It doesn't mention all female groups though.

Comment: Re:Women prefer male bosses (Score 1) 394

by ceoyoyo (#48189779) Attached to: NASA's HI-SEAS Project Results Suggests a Women-Only Mars Crew

NASA has done long duration studies of groups with various sex compositions. IIRC, all male groups work well. Not surprisingly, since most militaries and NASA itself has lots of experience with those. Mixed groups do even better, although there can be problems with sex and jealousy. All female groups were unstable long term.

Comment: Re:bandwidth isn't the problem (Score 3, Insightful) 429

by ceoyoyo (#48112577) Attached to: BitHammer, the BitTorrent Banhammer

The issue is that this guy is using a security weakness in a network protocol to redirect the traffic of users he doesn't like to himself. I'm sure you've heard the idea that the ends don't justify the means?

Should hotels, coffee shops and other "public" wifi providers use better APs? Probably. Should APs in general be made better? Likely. Should bittorrent users be more considerate? Yes. Is this guy an asshole committing crimes on other people's networks in his own self-interest? Absolutely.

Comment: Re:Scripting language du jour (Score 1) 547

by ceoyoyo (#48105219) Attached to: Goodbye, World? 5 Languages That Might Not Be Long For This World

The best thing about Python is Cython. You can use all the nice bits of Python and then when you want something to run fast you can write some C code and just use it.

I often use Python to help write C where standard debuggers don't cut it. Need to graph something or display an image to debug your algorithm? No problem. And when you're done, you have Python wrappers as a bonus.

Comment: Re:Scripting language du jour (Score 1) 547

by ceoyoyo (#48105205) Attached to: Goodbye, World? 5 Languages That Might Not Be Long For This World

R is going strong because there isn't really an alternative. It's a pretty horrible language, but that part is copied from something else (SPlus).

Python is much the same. R evolved to replace things like SAS, which are expensive, proprietary and clunky for research. Python got adopted to replace MatLab, which is expensive, proprietary and can be clunky for many kinds of research. In both cases, there's a lot of ancillary stuff that needs to work well - plotting, signal and image processing, interfaces to peripherals, databases, etc. In science, whatever most people choose is going to become dominant and stay that way until there's a good reason to switch.

Comment: Re:If you wanted us to believe your Op-Ed... (Score 2) 547

by ceoyoyo (#48104679) Attached to: Goodbye, World? 5 Languages That Might Not Be Long For This World

So, here's my problem with whitespace being syntactically significant ... everybody likes to see code with different levels of indent. There isn't one "naturally readable" way which everybody agrees on. And then suddenly you have a language which says "we're all stuck with whatever the whiniest coder wants".

Use tabs. Set your tab stop to however many spaces you like. There you go. As a bonus, I can read your code with my preferred level of indent as well.

One of the few things that irritates me about Python is the PEP that suggests you should use spaces for whitespace.

Do not simplify the design of a program if a way can be found to make it complex and wonderful.

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