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Comment Re:Maybe they'll grow up as well as old (Score 3, Insightful) 721

A lot of todays "young people" somehow find classical music boring. This, I do not understand. Boring is listening to the exact same riff or chord over and over and over throughout an entire song without any variation. Classical music might do the same theme many times throughout a piece, but it's usually varied every time. Bach, for example, would take one theme and vary it a step at a time until it turned into a completely different theme.

Comment Re:STFU (Score 1) 467

Wrong. We do know what happens when you smash particles at high energies. Particle accelerators across the globe, Fermilab the most prominent until now, have been doing it for years. The energy the LHC is going to smash at, while much greater than any before, still isn't that much. Divide the energy, 14TeV, by c^2 to get the mass. 14TeV/c^2 is about 15,000amu, the mass of 15,000 hydrogen atoms or 2.5x10^-20 grams. Even if the LHC did manage to create a black hole out of all that mass, it would be too little to draw anything in and would evaporate in less than a second.

And in the event the LHC does cause great damage (more likely to be to the power grid than anything), CERN will be responsible for paying up. The physicists will not go on trial, CERN will, because CERN is responsible for the LHC in the same way Fermilab is responsible for the Tevatron. That's why people start corporations—so they don't become responsible when something goes wrong.

Comment Re:PI At Home (Score 1) 204

Yeah, I think that someone needs to set up a pi computation BOINC project and just keep calculating. The real question is "would it be feasible?" I guess they'd have to go about it a different way than {SETI,Folding}@Home. Instead of giving the client a "chunk" of instructions, you could just give it one digit. The algorithm for finding a particular digit (the BBP or Bellard's formula) could be stored on the client's computer indefinitely, and the computer could simply be instructed to extract a single digit or a block of digits and send them back to the host.

PiHex already did this, sorta, but in binary and only was after specific ranges of digits. I think the main deciding factor would be speed. How many digits can the average computer (or slightly above average, since that's the kind of people who would sign up) compute in about a second? A minute? An hour? Is it linear? We ought to run benchmarks before doing anything like this.

Comment Me (Score 1) 799

When I was 12, I actually started teaching myself programming with TI-BASIC on a school-supplied graphing calculator. HTML and GW-BASIC quickly followed, then it was on to Visual Basic and C++. If I were to do it again today, though, I'd probably start with Python—it's easy to learn and can do great stuff. I would certainly steer clear of things like Alice and HTML, which don't really teach the fundamentals of programming very well.

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