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Comment Re:NIST definition - Cloud computing (Score 1) 118

The fact that "cloud computing" needs 1.5 pages for definition alone is proof that the concept was created by the Marketing Department of the Sirius Cybernetics Corporation.

And here I thought it was Tyrell Corp, developing it as a ploy to use up the limited lifespan of any Android foolish enough to escape their servitude.

Comment Break things that used to work? Sure (Score 1, Interesting) 118

Can Red Hat do for Open Stack what it did for Linux?

If by that, do you mean can Red Hat break things that have worked perfectly for years (clustering in FC13-16 vs 17+, and the godawful mess that is systemd replacing perfectly servicable and reliable UNIX mainstays such as sysv init, etc.), then the answer is most definitely:


On a recent conference call with Red Hat, they dismissed Open Stack and touted their own proprietary products for "cloudy" type infrastructure. Bringing fuel into the fold won't be any different...they'll downplay open source fuel and tout their own version, with layers of proprietary, opaque add-ons of questionable value. The RH version will lag a version or two behind the upstream free version, and probably suffer some breakage due to RH addons. Same song as before, different day.

Comment Re:Noisy isn't it. (Score 1) 123

Also I'm not sure what those cages around the fan blades are suppose to acheive since the cage gap is huge, anything could be sucked in there, needs to be a cage more like a desktop fan.

I presume the cages are sized to keep body parts out.

Unfortunately the laws of physics seriously don't like your suggestion of tighter cages. At low air speeds and with abundant power available you can use tight cages no problem. But when you're at high air velocities to get substantial thrust and where power efficiency is crucial, any obstruction in the air stream is a serious issue. Aerodynamic drag is proportional to velocity squared. When you multiply air speed by ten, the drag caused by each cage wire is multiplied by a hundred. This means thrust loss, as well as draining the batteries trying to compensate for lost thrust. Adding batteries to compensate for the extra power drain increases your weight. Increased weight means you need to compensate with that much more thrust, which in turn means more weight and more power drain. It is a problem that compounds upon itself. You need the cage wires to be as thin and sparse as as you can get away with, short of inviting serious accidental injury.


Comment Re:Not bicycle powered? (Score 1) 123

I had the same reaction, that strapping a bicycle to it seemed totally irrelevant. But I guess you can bike down to the river, fly across, and continue biking. And if you don't mind burning some of your flight time you can use the batteries to power the bike. That gives you a combination of long ground range with the ability to fly over terrain or traffic at will. Cute. Too bad you're stuck with those big bulky fans all around it in cycle mode. If those could fold down compactly it would actually be a pretty practical combo to place on an electric bike. Well, of course that's setting aside the suicide-machine factor.

Final analysis: Darwin would approve.


Comment Re:Noisy isn't it. (Score 4, Informative) 123

350 pound flight capacity minus 187 pound vehicle weight seems to indicate a 163 pound (74 kilo) passenger limit. Not great, but that's certainly not "anorexic child-size styrofoam dummy" either. I'm an adult male, I could get there if I cut out the peanutbuttercups and switched to diet soda.

Oh well, I guess that means I'm never going to be able to ride it. Diet soda is vile.
How about they work on inventing that? Soda that tastes like sugar-water without being sugar-water? Chuckle.


Comment Re:umm... (Score 1) 115

OK now you are dismissive AND arrogant. Good work, I am more concerned about you and your field of endeavor than I was when this started.

The fact that genomic research HAS enabled the ability to engineer organisms that can be extremely dangerous, and can potentially be dangerous to only targetted groups is intensely intertwined with all the beneficial advances in the field. You simply can't separate the two and pretend the dark side isn't there.

Genomics is simply a very dangeorus field. Its given an ethically challenged species the ability to play god and tamper with life itself. Its just a matter of time until someone will tamper with it and it wont end well.

"Yes, I singled out rednecks and skinheadsâ¦"

There wasn't even a tinge of humor in it, not sure why you are claiming there was.

You are engaging in the very kind of stereotyping and targeting of groups you've been preaching against and dismissing. And to pile on you just added a bunch more groups you hold in contempt and would probably just as soon seen wiped off the face of the earth.

Its the kind of bigotry a well educated, probably liberal, affluent person such as yourself would refuse to accept as bigotry. It doesn't really bother me that you are doing it. It bothers me you don't seem to even realize you are doing it.

Comment Re:umm... (Score 1) 115

" What do *you* think should be done to address the problem(s) that concerns you? What is your contribution?"

Not really sure there is anything that can be done. The genie is already out of the bottle. You can pass laws and try to suppress it which will slow beneficial use and do nothing to hamper malevolent use.

There are already people actively trying to alter organisms in their garage and on kickstarter. I assure you there are nation states like North Korea who have the capacity to do malevolent work. It is also well with in the range of well funded extremist groups.

Probably the best thing I can contribute is the thing I did contribute. Remind everyone that this technology is extremely powerful, if you are going to dwell on the upside you should at least remain aware of the downside. Since you seem to be actively involved in the field your dismissive attitude towards the dangers makes me more concerned, not less.

Your assertion that no one will ever try eugenics again is delusional. There are groups and people who are fully committed to it today, all they need is the power to implement it. Hungary for example is already drifting towards an anti semitic neo nazi state in the heart of Europe. As Greece plunges in to an economic abyss, a fascist state is a highly possible outcome. Genomics would have been a boon to the final solution and breeding a master race.

Claiming your commitment to "wisdom of civilization and culture" while you sling epithets like "redneck" and "skinhead" doesn't put you or your cause in a positive light. Labeling people as "rednecks" indicates you have a tendency to stereotype people the same way eugenicists do.

Comment Re:umm... (Score 1) 115

"A. Are you saying just because a technology can be used for harm it should be abandoned or suppressed?"

Actually, no I didn't say anything remotely resembling that. I think I pointed out if you are going to tote up the upside you should probably at least keep it in your mind there is a down side to most technologies. Their cost can be extremely steep, especially when you whistle past the grave yard and ignore them.

Fossil fuels for example have been a boon to the energy input equation driving civilization, as long as they don't start a run away greenhouse effect and wipe out life as we know it.

You seem to be a poster child for "the road to hell is paved with good intentions".

"Just because the technology makes it more feasible doesn't mean we are reckless enough to flirt with it again"

Keep telling yourself that, and hope you have good genes.

"this stuff is not so easy to do accidentally"

Yea, its so tough there are DIY home geneticists "using the Synthetic Biology Parts Registry to engineer yogurt bacteria to produce prozac"

Comment Re:umm... (Score 1) 115

Its a little one side to think genomics will be all upside. The flip side...

A. What will be the costs if someone designs genetically targetted weapons, i.e. biological weapons that only target certain races or even individual people. I read an article a while back that the Secret Service strives to minimize access to the President's DNA, for example skin cells left in sheets, to prevent someone from targetting his genome with a biological weapon.

B. What will the cost be when people or nation states try to genetically engineer for superior intelligence, strength and speed to create an actual master race. It might be a win for them if they succeed, not so much for everyone else.

C. What will the cost be if eugenics returns and people who are considered genetically inferior are sterilized and their genome is wiped out. Reference B.

D. What will be the cost be when someone tries to genetical engineer a virus, bacteria, plant or animal, it goes horribly wrong and results in a global threat.

Comment Re:US Epic fail (Score 1) 266

It's not fear of nuclear power that makes it uneconomical. It's cheap fossil fuels. Back in the 70s it was the Saudis opening the oil spigot; today it's fracking natural gas and of course coal.

Which is not to say irrational fear hasn't created nuclear problems -- particularly when it comes to developing long term storage facilities for high level radioactive waste. We also give fossil fuels a break on externalized costs because we're familiar with the and therefore fear them less than we probably ought. But still, it's hard to supplant a mature, entrenched, *cheap* technology.

Comment Re:Definitions (Score 1) 860

Well, it depends. You have to look at each situation individually to see what is at stake. If you know that Anne Frank's family is hiding in the office annex, you obviously keep your mouth shut.

In a case like this, it's important to remember that civil disobedience is most effective when it forces the government to mete out a wildly unpopular punishment. What the government has done is bound to be extremely unpopular because it has come perilously close to passing a secret law.

People think they have fourth amendment protections for most of this data, but long established precedent (Smith v. Maryland) is that there is no Constitutional expectation of privacy for metadata on phone calls. When Congress weakened *statutory* protections against collecting call metadata, American citizens *believed* their calling data was still protected by the Constitution. Nobody has bothered to disabuse them of this idea; not Congress (who despite their current posturing passed the law and authorized the program) nor the Obama administration (their posturing on "transparency" and "accountability" notwithstanding). They knew that the majority of Americans had no idea the changes in the law technically allowed the government to run a program like PRISM.

The exposure of this bit of flim-flammery makes Snowden standing up and outing himself incredibly powerful. His doing that means that this issue will *not* die down anytime soon. Look at how long the Bradley Manning case has dragged on, and *this* one, rightly or wrongly, may prove to be far more powerful in the public imagination. I think Snowden might have been morally justified in laying low if he thought he could get away with it, but his outing of himself will keep this issue alive through the next election cycle at least. That could deal a far more serious blow to the PRISM program than quietly leaking it's existence. The cost of that greater impact is that Snowden definitely loses his job, and he faces prosecution and legal punishments.

Comment Re:email leak (Score 2, Insightful) 476

OK, now you are in a position where the burden of proof is on you.

It's legitimate to look at somebody's evidence and say, "it doesn't convince me." It's sometimes *also* legitimate to say "I've seen enough evidence to convince myself beyond a reasonable doubt, so I won't bother thinking about your evidence; otherwise you'd have to take the time to examine the workings of every proposed perpetual motion machine.

What you can't do is say, "I'll dismiss your evidence because there's a possibility you have a conflict of interest." Everyone *always* has a vested interest in any position they've taken in the past. If you go there, if you call a man a liar because he has stated a professional opinion you disagree with, it's *your* responsibility to show evidence that lying has taken place. If you can't, STFU.

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