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Comment: Re:.....this is news? (Score 2) 71

by wren337 (#49463793) Attached to: Chinese Hacker Group Targets Air-Gapped Networks
I worked at an online real-estate service in the early 90's, we let realtors mail us floppy disks that our VB app had written listing information onto. One of our jobs was to run through the stack of floppies in the mail every day. So many viruses. People really were clueless about AV protection and were just swapping disks.

Comment: Migration issue (Score 1) 626

There are candidate languages already like Esperanto as has been pointed out. I think what you're looking for is a path to get from here to there. Artificially, I think you'd want education, books, newscasters etc. to start deliberately moving what we see as "proper" language towards the new language. Start introducing borrow-words that are easy to infer meaning of from usage. Begin tweaking word order in subtle ways towards the target. Let people pick it up over generations. Over the course of 100, 200 years with concerted effort the entire planet could be speaking one language. Maybe shorter. But the coordination it would take would be unprecedented.

Comment: Re:Artists paid 16 times as much for Spotify than (Score 1) 305

by wren337 (#49113061) Attached to: Pandora Pays Artists $0.001 Per Stream, Thinks This Is "Very Fair"
I think you're assuming that most people would have spent more than $10 a month without spotify. You can argue the dollar amount, but one album a month is probably a pretty good starting point as an average spend. Just because I can listen to thousands of albums in a month doesn't mean I would have otherwise bought thousands of albums in a month.

Comment: Terribly difficult to filter image search (Score 1) 52

by wren337 (#48522431) Attached to: Google Confirms That It's Designing Kid-Friendly Versions of Its Services
The way Google has implemented image search, the thumbnails that come back are incredibly difficult to filter even using DNS services. Sure, you can set Safe Mode in the browser, but all a kid needs to do is open a different browser, delete cookies or go into private mode. The current best approach that I'm aware of is URL re-writing (to force-append the safe search parameter to every request) - and that is beyond what most people can do with a home wireless router. Something like creating kids.google.com would go a long way to making this easy for parents (in conjunction with something like OpenDNS).

Comment: Re:Could turn our lives into a dystopia... (Score 1) 127

by wren337 (#45617741) Attached to: Scientists Boost the "Will To Persevere" With Current To the Brain
Or, more likely, soldiers. Imagine all of your troops experiencing this at once just before battle.

Current to the anterior midcingulate cortex gave both patients an increased heart rate, physical sensation in the chest or neck, and “anticipation of challenge coupled with strong motivation to overcome it”

Comment: Re:Supply and demand (Score 1) 353

by wren337 (#43078033) Attached to: UC Davis Study Concludes H-1B Workers Neither Best Nor Brightest

What if H1B workers became free agents after 6 months? No paperwork on the part of the hiring company, they just accept a new offer and file something to say they are switching employers. If the problem is that there are not enough qualified people in the "hiring pool" then this shouldn't matter, right? After all they will tell you that they're paying a competitive salary already.

This whole artificially depressed salary thing could blow over if they weren't indentured servants, unable to move. You could normalize salaries pretty quickly. And the sponsoring company would have to become competitive enough to keep people.

Comment: Re:These are not the droids you're looking for (Score 2) 275

by wren337 (#43002355) Attached to: Human Rights Watch: Petition Against Robots On the Battle Field

Landmines are the perfect example of existing autonomous technology. Next steps would be, I imagine, drones that fly themselves home if jammed. Still pretty innocuous but a step into automation.

Also imagine a first generation turret. Automated target acquisition based on stereo imaging and stereo microphones. The first models would require an operator to approve the target. But the systems are so much faster than us - soon you'd want to be able to approve a target area, hold down the "OK" button and have it keep firing. We're not talking spray and pray here - this thing could be single round fully automated sniper, catching someone who only sticks their head up for a fraction of a second. How long until you'd designate an area as a no-go hostile zone and leave it on all night to guard the perimeter?

The question of whether computers can think is just like the question of whether submarines can swim. -- Edsger W. Dijkstra

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