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Comment: Non-renewables are still the biggest source (Score 1) 108

by vakuona (#48478011) Attached to: Renewables Are Now Scotland's Biggest Energy Source

The math is clear

7.8 + 5.6 + 1.4 is greater than 10.8.

And before you go all nitpicky on me, I have combined all non-renewables (nuclear, coal, gas), in the same way as the original submission combined hydro, solar and wind, all of which have less in common than the non-renewables, which are all thermal power plants, and thus have a lot more in common.

Comment: Re:Has the trend away from blunt force led to this (Score 1) 1087

by vakuona (#48460929) Attached to: Officer Not Charged In Michael Brown Shooting

Now that you put it that way, I would add that it makes sense why US police seem to opt for lethal force. When you have a gun, you can be reckless. In the same way that George Zimmerman felt able to stalk a kid who was much bigger than him. He had a gun, so he could take more risks with himself. Except that when cops (or Zimmerman) take risks with themselves, they are also taking risks with the lives of the people they are confronting. And that is the really unacceptable bit.

In the UK (and many other countries), the police do not have guns, therefore they have to take rather more care in dealing with potentially dangerous situations. People dying in police confrontations is incredibly rare in the UK, in part because the police do not believe they are outmatching their targets. Therefore, they will avoid escalating any situation until they know they can absolutely control it.

Whenever a policeman (or woman) resorts to firing his gun, especially against an unarmed person, then they have lost control, and many times, it is their fault that they have lost that control.

Comment: Re:Sounds reasonable (Score 1) 243

by vakuona (#48444809) Attached to: Swedish Court Refuses To Revoke Julian Assange's Arrest Warrant

So what if there is an investigation. Someone leaked highly sensitive documents. Of course there was going to be an investigation. Doesn't prove that they definitely wanted to extradite him. At worst, Assange is like a spy, and the US generally doesn't go after foreign spies either.

Assange influenced an American man to provide documents, and that is the person the US went after. Of course if Assange steps into the US, he might find himself in a bit of bother, but it is highly doubtful they will go after him.

Comment: Re:Sounds reasonable (Score 1) 243

by vakuona (#48434597) Attached to: Swedish Court Refuses To Revoke Julian Assange's Arrest Warrant

The US has not made any charges against him, and they have not requested his extradition from any country. It would be silly for Sweden to promise this. If anything, it would only encourage the US to actually test such a promise, even if they had no intention to do so.

Secondly, Sweden is bound by the terms of any treaty it signed with the US. They don't get to cherry pick who they will decide to extradite and who they will not. It is not even a political decision - a court will decide whether to extradite him or not based on the agreed rules/laws on extradition. If Assange was in Sweden, and he met the criteria for extradition, then he would be extradited.

And what exactly is Assange bargaining with here? Usually, a deal to avoid prosecution is made when you have something to bargain with. If Assange wants to bargain, he needs to offer something of value to Sweden. Now if he has some yet-to-be-leaked documents, Sweden might be willing to make a deal.

The man is simply using the extradition as a smokescreen. He is right up there with Polanski in my opinion - a fugitive from justice.

Comment: Re:510kph is airliner speed? (Score 1) 418

by vakuona (#48394815) Attached to: Japanese Maglev Train Hits 500kph

I would add that (1) airports are usually some distance outside any major city and (2) You are usually required to have cleared security about 30 minutes before the flight on domestic flights.

I live in the UK, and even though we do not have "proper" high speed rail, train journey times to London are quite competitive with flying. The quickest train from London to Edinburgh is 4 hours, and I can literally get on the train one minute before it leaves the station. If you wanted to get from central Edinburgh to central London, you usually need at least 3 hours to do so by train. This maglev train would be faster than flying no doubt.

Comment: Re:Don't mess with the geek's toys (Score 1) 114

by vakuona (#48367617) Attached to: Groupon Backs Down On Gnome

Branding is for people who might not know, so the fact that people who know EITHER or the system would not be confused by it is as irrelevant as is the fact that Usain Bolt won the last two 100m Olympic gold medals.

If you know both projects, then the brand doesn't matter.

And in any case, why don't they try call it BMW or Mercedes Benz while they are at it, and see how far they get. Those companies are in completely different industries right? That wouldn't cause any issues at all right?

Comment: Re:False sense of success? (Score 1) 112

by vakuona (#48352463) Attached to: Amazon's Echo Chamber

Way to miss the point. I was talking about how success is more than just putting the product in the hands of the early adopters.

The iPhone is a success because people use it and love it, they sing its praises and influence others to buy it.

Amazon surely wants more and better success than simply getting a small number of people to play with the device and then to put it in a drawer. They want people to buy and consume media on it, which is their play after all. If people don't do that, then they won't consider Fire Phone a success. And I don't think they will be considering it a success any time soon.

Comment: Re:identify (Score 1) 320

by vakuona (#48243233) Attached to: What Will It Take To Make Automated Vehicles Legal In the US?

I see you scenario and I raise you the automated car's response.

Car sees deer lurking by the road side. Car blasts deer off the roadside to ensure it doesn't stray into the road.

Kidding aside, there is no reason a car couldn't do exactly what you would in such a scenario. As long as it can recognize that there is a large animal near the road (which it is likely to realise before you would), it can slow down, change lanes etc. It is also able to react long before you would. For example, upon noticing that there is a potential hazard in the road, it could preemptively move the brake calipers as close as it can to the disc brakes to minimise the time required to engage. You wouldn't normally want this in a human driven car because you have to use the feeling in your feet to regulate the brake force. An automated car doesn't have that problem.

If it couldn't prevent a collision, it can also prep all other safety systems to ensure that the collision causes as little damage to the occupants as possible e.g. gets the airbags ready to go etc.

Finally, once the collision happens, it can continue to steer the car out of trouble, which can be pretty important if there are other cars around. Many times, once a car is hit, humans lose control. The automated systems in a car, assuming you haven't hit a wall, can continue to operate until the car comes to a safe stop.

There are many ways for an automated car to do much better than human in most scenarios, including scenarios where an accident becomes inevitable. A computer can also choose to crash in the best possible way to reduce damage to yourself.

Things equal to nothing else are equal to each other.

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