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Comment: I wrote this article, and am available for comment (Score 1) 329

by tgeller (#47751797) Attached to: ACM Blames the PC For Driving Women Away From Computer Science
Wow, how could I have missed this Slashdotting? Nobody tells me nuthin'.

Anyway. I'm the author of this article -- my list of recent work, which includes it, is http://tomgeller.com/portfolio.

I haven't read the comments yet, and am about to (with trepidation).

One quick note: I take exception with the headline. "ACM" didn't blame anybody for anything. Interview subject Valerie Barr "believes the retreat was caused partly by the growth of personal computers". I've asked for it to be changed.

Comment: Re:Perfectly appropriate action for the FAA to tak (Score 2) 199

by tgeller (#47437897) Attached to: FAA Pressures Coldwell, Other Realtors To Stop Using Drone Footage
"Something isn't more or less safe if money changes hands."

No, but:

a) Other factors come into play when money changes hands -- issues of liability, scale, entitlements, conversion of public benefits....

b) Commercial exceptions are well-established in U.S. law.. If you want to argue they shouldn't be, you'll have to go back something like a hundred years. These restrictions have been very good for the country, though, so you'd have an uphill battle.

Comment: Perfectly appropriate action for the FAA to take (Score 4, Insightful) 199

by tgeller (#47437767) Attached to: FAA Pressures Coldwell, Other Realtors To Stop Using Drone Footage
From the post:

"This is a troubling development in an ongoing saga over the FAA's rules which punish the safe commercial use of drones."

Nope. It's a completely appropriate action according to the FAA's mandate and charter. It's their exact *job*.

Whether it's an appropriate restriction is to be debated.

Comment: Re:Registration != ownership (Score 1) 264

Apples and oragnes.

The Nike swoosh and McDonalds yellow M are very specific geometric depictions. Anyone can use a swoosh logo, as a Google image search for "swoosh logo -nike" shows.

Further, each of these examples represents (at least) hundreds of thousands of dollars of development, and hundreds of millions of dollars in direct investment to reinforce through advertising.

Comment: Re:Huh? (Score 1) 362

by tgeller (#46383735) Attached to: Google Funds San Francisco Bus Rides For Poor
Malls? MALLS? I'm guessing you don't actually live in San Francisco. ;)

But seriously. If Google had easy access to such private spaces, and they were convenient to their employees (in the crowded Haight, Mission, etc.), I'm sure they'd use those options. But convenient stops big enough for a bus to pull into are quite rare there.

Comment: Real Estate and Construction (Score 1) 49

by tgeller (#46306587) Attached to: Google's Project Tango Seeks To Map a 3D World
There are two potentially huge markets. I, for one, would like to be able to take a few (360-degree) photos of my house and have SketchUp (formerly owned by Google) deliver a 3D version that prospective buyers could "walk around in" via their browsers. Similarly, construction works spend a lot of effort making site measurements to create estimates, order materials, etc.. If that could be automatically produced via 3D renderings, all the better.

Comment: "Some developers" make ridiculous predictions (Score 1) 96

by tgeller (#44111293) Attached to: Breaking Supercomputers' Exaflops Barrier

Some developers predicted that China's new Tianhe-2 supercomputer would be the first to break through.

Wait... *what* uninformed developer(s) predicted that? The previous record (six months ago) was set by Titan, at 17.59 Petaflop/s. So to pass the exaflop barrier this time around would require over a fifty-fold improvement -- something never before seen in the history of the Top500 list. Did someone *really* make this prediction, or is author Kevin Fogarty just making shit up?

Comment: Re:Coin? (Score 1) 179

by tgeller (#44066105) Attached to: Five predictions for (Bit)coin
<quote>The mapping from your pseudonyms to your "real" identity can be done as soon as you trade your bitcoins for anything not bitcoin.</quote>

That's a good point, assuming that government regulations will require exchanges to record traders' identities (which seems likely). On the other hand, one could use the money to buy something with the Bitcoin and remain anonymous.

Tangentially: I used to think that Bitcoin couldn't be anonymous because one could build an identifying profile based on a series of purchases or exchanges. Then I learned that quite a few holders of Bitcoin use a *different address for each transaction*. That really does muddy the waters!

Comment: Re:Reintroducing the central authority for no gain (Score 1) 179

by tgeller (#44060387) Attached to: Five predictions for (Bit)coin
I think you're underestimating the coordination and effort required in that "administration and such". That's the central authority.

Decentralized authority works for some things -- the Bitcoin system demonstrates that. But some (such as judging insurance payouts) require the human touch.

"Any excuse will serve a tyrant." -- Aesop

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