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More Supermassive Black Holes Than We Thought! 37 37

LeadSongDog writes: The Royal Astronomical Society reports five supermassive black holes (SMBHs) that were previously hidden by dust and gas have been uncovered. The discovery suggests there may be millions more supermassive black holes in the universe than were previously thought. George Lansbury, a postgraduate student in the Centre for Extragalactic Astronomy, at Durham University, said: “For a long time we have known about supermassive black holes that are not obscured by dust and gas, but we suspected that many more were hidden from our view. Thanks to NuSTAR for the first time we have been able to clearly see these hidden monsters that are predicted to be there, but have previously been elusive because of their ‘buried’ state. Although we have only detected five of these hidden supermassive black holes, when we extrapolate our results across the whole Universe then the predicted numbers are huge and in agreement with what we would expect to see.”

Comment: Re:Foreign interests? (Score 1) 309 309

Are you really that dumb? Of course criminals obey SOME laws. Otherwise, rounding up criminals would be easy, as you just arrest the guy crossing the street a dozen time because jaywalking is illegal.

My point is that criminals do not mind breaking laws if it benefits them. Honest citizens, in general, will obey the laws.

If a criminal can 3D print a gun, he will. Getting jail time is just an occupational hazard for a criminal.

An honest citizen, one with children that they are responsible for, will generally not do things that will get them locked up for years.

+ - UI Fail: How Our User interfaces Help to Ruin Lives->

Lauren Weinstein writes: A couple of months ago, in "Seeking Anecdotes Regarding 'Older' Persons' Use of Web Services," I asked for stories and comments regarding experiences that older users have had with modern Web systems, with an emphasis on possible problems and frustrations.

I purposely did not define "older" — with the result that responses arrived from users (or regarding users) self-identifying as ages ranging from their 30s to well into their 90s (suggesting that "older" is largely a point of view rather than an absolute).

Response rates were much higher than I had anticipated, driven significantly by the gracious endorsement of my survey by Leo Notenboom of ASK LEO!, who went out on a limb and assured his large readership that I was not some loony out to steal their personal information.

Before I began the survey I had some preconceived notions of how the results would appear. Some of these were proven correct, but overall the responses also contained many surprises, often both depressing and tragic in scope.

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Comment: Re:Need to be adjustable (Score 1) 249 249

I am currently at a cube. It is a no-brainer to simply detach the work surface from the cube and stick it back in a couple of feet higher. If you want to sit, get something the height of a bar stool, and you are golden.

For home use, I used an Ikea table-style desk and raised it up as far as it would go. Not tall enough, so I purchased some bed risers (Target, Bed Bath & Beyond, etc.) to raise it up an extra five or six inches. Problem solved for not much coin.

Comment: Re:bans on knowledge rarely work (Score 1) 309 309

So, short of hiring a psychic to predict future crime, what else do you suggest as far as a background check? Do you have a criminal record? Have you been declared mentally incompetent?

Anything beyond that is a judgement call, and who gets to make that call? On what basis?

Keep in mind that every year, less than one out of every 30,000 gun is used in a murder.

Comment: Re:From a user standpoint (Score 1) 401 401

Additional things to bring from Amiga:

  • From the CLI, a directory appears to be just another executable object. Name it on the command line and you are there. Put another way, the "cd" command is just white noise.
  • Device names, volume names and aliases are interchangeable. Program or script needs a particular volume of removable media? Simply reference it by name (e.g. foo:). A dialogue box will pop up asking you to put that volume into any drive and click OK. You never need to click OK, because it will detect the volume insertion and carry on. Did you copy that data to the hard drive? Just define an alias so that, for instance, foo: now points to system:volumes/foo.

That said, don't look to Amiga as a model of stability . . . it wasn't. All it took to bring one to a red guru meditation was to attempt to read past EOF.

Comment: Re:Yay, regulation!! (Score 1) 309 309

Actually, most people, including myself, are just honest. While I could get pirated movies, I would rather be able to live with myself and I follow the law willingly. Note that I do use VLC so I don't have to watch the FBI warnings and previews (probably breaking the law somehow).

+ - MIT's Bitcoin-Inspired 'Enigma' Lets Computers Mine Encrypted Data->

Guy Zyskind writes: On Tuesday, a pair of bitcoin entrepreneurs and the MIT Media Lab revealed a prototype for a system called Enigma, designed to achieve a decades-old goal in data security known as “homomorphic” encryption: A way to encrypt data such that it can be shared with a third party and used in computations without it ever being decrypted. That mathematical trick—which would allow untrusted computers to accurately run computations on sensitive data without putting the data at risk of hacker breaches or surveillance—has only become more urgent in an age when millions of users constantly share their secrets with cloud services ranging from Amazon and Dropbox to Google and Facebook. Now, with bitcoin’s tricks in their arsenal, Enigma’s creators say they can now pull off homomorphically encrypted computations more efficiently than ever.
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Comment: Re: What an opportunity! (Score 1) 359 359

Somehow you've managed to miss the austere in austerity. The trait of great self-denial (especially refraining from worldly pleasures). Not only that, you've manage to ignore the role of income.

Scandinavians pay for these benefits with high taxes. The governments make no effort to hide this, as evidenced by this paragraph from a Danish government tax guide for new citizens.

You are an insult to my intelligence! I demand that you log off immediately.