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Comment Re:simple reason. (Score 1) 427

In the comments to TFA one suggestion is that the patent office people may not be allowed to modify the submitted forms in any way (which seems a good idea in general to prevent fraud) and that even a simple rotation of the text could be interpreted as modification, so they can't rotate the text. Taking a good idea a step too far, I suspect, but such is the nature of bureaucracy.

Comment Re:Doublethink (Score 1) 473

I suspect that the publisher (and related folks) who own the rights to her works are wining and dining her, and in the process telling her how awful this whole situation is. A bit of operant conditioning as it were - training her that certain stances result in pleasurable times, do that often enough and I suspect the subject will not only support the conditioned stance, but even find better justifications for it.

Comment Re:Silly password requirements (Score 1) 499

The password strength checkers seem odd to me sometimes. I recently had to generate a new password for a site and used my standard method, pick a sentence related to the site (sometimes rude, sometimes nonsensical), then use the first letters, changing one or two to numeric or symbols (so the first sentence in this post might have given me "Tpscs02ms"). My first picked sentence gave me 16 characters (even all lower case that would probably have been good as there were no dictionary words or other simple patterns). The site told me that that password was seriously insecure - and playing around a bit I discovered that the same string truncated at 13 characters was rated highly secure. I should have looked at the code (javascript) to see why adding three characters made it so much worse but was trying to get things done.

A Hyper-Velocity Impact In the Asteroid Belt? 114

astroengine writes "Astronomers have spotted something rather odd in the asteroid belt. It looks like a comet, but it's got a circular orbit, similar to an asteroid. Whether it's an asteroid or a comet, it has a long, comet-like tail, suggesting something is being vented into space. Some experts think it could be a very rare comet/asteroid hybrid being heated by the sun, but there's an even more exciting possibility: It could be the first ever observation of two asteroids colliding in the asteroid belt."

Comment grammidity (Score 3, Interesting) 164

I've written a few genetic algorithm/programming things for "music" over the years. However, not being a musician, I approached it only from an algorithmic perspective. The last of these, called "grammidity" can attempt to evolve sequences of midi events based on a kind of grammar that evolves (loosely based on the ideas behind L-systems). I had it online for a couple of years, but it never evolved much of anything interesting. The source code (java) is on sourceforge and includes ways to evolve "plants" and a fuzzer that generates html and which worked quite nicely to break browsers a couple of years back.

Comment Re:Of course it is. (Score 1) 769

But, if you'd used unix first and used "ls", "dir" would not be intuitive at all. It is always interesting how many people equate "intuitive" to "I learned it already" even when that learning process was often far from intuitive itself.

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