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Comment Idle hands... (Score 1) 856

Senator Leland Yee is proof that the vast majority of elected officials are useless buffoons. They are in excess of humanity's requirement survive and therefore redundant except as raw material to create soylent green.

The idiot does not realize that to do so would require sales enforcement to regulate the sale of servo motors, items that contain servo motors, all-thread rod, timing belts, gears, bare circuit boards, solder...

The list is endless. Such a person should also consider banning libraries since I can use one to learn the procedure to produce nitro-cellulose. And let's not forget that we must also permanently incarcerate all of the specops guys since they could train everyday citizens to become insurgents.

The best use for politicians is to fill abandoned mine shafts.

Submission + - Teenager Expelled and Arrested for Science Experiment

ruhri writes: A 16 year-old girl in Florida not only has been expelled from her high school but also is being charged as an adult with a felony after replicating the classic toilet-bowl cleaner and aluminum foil experiment.

This has quite a number of scientists and science educators up in arms. The fact that she's African American and that the same assistant state attorney has decided not to charge a white teenager who accidentally killed his brother with a BB gun has some thinking whether this is a case of doing science while black.

Submission + - Mozilla Claims Government Spyware Masquerading As Firefox

twoheadedboy writes: Mozilla has sent British spyware pusher Gamma International a cease and desist letter, after a report showed how the surveillance software was being delivered under the guise of a Firefox executable. Gamma has come under fire in recent months after its spyware was found in use in countries with poor human rights records. Its FinSpy tool, which can infect smartphones and PCs, was seen in use in various nations run by apparently repressive regimes, including Bahrain, Egypt, Ethiopia, Turkmenistan and Vietnam. Mozilla isn't happy about how that spyware is getting on users' machines, however. "As an open source project trusted by hundreds of millions of people around the world, defending Mozilla’s trademarks from this abuse is vital to our brand, mission and continued success,” said Mozilla chief privacy officer Alex Fowler.

Comment Re:How about gloves? (Score 2) 632

Probably not.

Unless a person is willing to become a Darwin Contestant, they won't use it. I sure as hell won't. Fingerprint biometrics are barely reliable in a lab situation. I can't imagine anyone putting up for this sort of crap going out to do some work. It's just more feel-good bullshit from someone who's never pulled the trigger for real.

Submission + - How NASA brought the Saturn-V F1 rocket engine back to life ( 3

Martin S. writes: How NASA Engineers have reverse engineered the F1 engine of a Saturn V launcher, because: every scrap of documentation produced during Project Apollo, including the design documents for the Saturn V and the F-1 engines, remains on file. If re-creating the F-1 engine were simply a matter of cribbing from some 1960s blueprints, NASA would have already done so. A typical design document for something like the F-1, though, was produced under intense deadline pressure and lacked even the barest forms of computerized design aids. Such a document simply cannot tell the entire story of the hardware. Each F-1 engine was uniquely built by hand, and each has its own undocumented quirks. In addition, the design process used in the 1960s was necessarily iterative: engineers would design a component, fabricate it, test it, and see how it performed. Then they would modify the design, build the new version, and test it again. This would continue until the design was "good enough."

Submission + - Isaac Asimov's Psychohistory Becoming A Reality? (

An anonymous reader writes: publishes an interesting interview with University of Connecticut Professor Peter Turchin about an emerging field in applied science named "Cliodynamics":
"In Issac Asimov’s classic science fiction saga Foundation, mathematics professor Hari Seldon predicts the future using what he calls psychohistory. Drawing on mathematical models that describe what happened in the past, he anticipates what will happen next, including the fall of the Galactic Empire.
That may seem like fanciful stuff. But Peter Turchin is turning himself into a real-life Hari Seldon — and he’s not alone.
Turchin — a professor at the University of Connecticut — is the driving force behind a field called “cliodynamics,” where scientists and mathematicians analyze history in the hopes of finding patterns they can then use to predict the future. It’s named after Clio, the Greek muse of history.[...]"
The bad news is that, according to these scientists early studies, it appears that "[...]the prognosis isn’t that far removed from the empire-crushing predictions laid down by Hari Seldon in the Foundation saga. Unless something changes, he says, we’re due for a wave of widespread violence in about 2020, including riots and terrorism.".

Submission + - Mozilla Stands Firm on Firefox Cookie Blocking, Despite Protests (

An anonymous reader writes: The Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB) has accusied Mozilla of "undermining American small business" with its plan to block advertising cookies by default in the Firefox browser. Fast-forward to today, and the pre-release version of Firefox version 22 does indeed proceed with the plan, which will make many users happy.

Submission + - North Korea Blamed for March Cyber Attacks on South (

DavidGilbert99 writes: It may have taken a few weeks but the South has finally officially pointed the finger of blamed for the 20 March cyber attacks on banks and TV stations at Pyongyang. As tensions rise on the Korean peninsula, cyber attacks could become increasingly important, with the North looking to target critical infrastructure in the South which is one of the world's most connected countries. The same cannot be said of the North however....

Submission + - Spectrolab claims new world record solar cell efficiency (

cylonlover writes: Spectrolab, a Boeing subsidiary known for the manufacture of solar cells for satellites and spacecraft, has in recent years turned its attention to terrestrial solar cells to tap into the expanding alternative energy market. Now the California-based company has claimed a new solar cell efficiency record of 37.8 percent for a ground-based multi-junction cell without solar concentration.

Comment This is why rooftop voting will soon be popular (Score 1) 631

What a fucked up place. Long, long ago, I was a proponent of "My country, right or wrong."

As I grew older that changed to distaste and then disgust with home and foreign policies.

Of late, it's become a cancer eating at my soul. What the fuck happened to America?

When I went off to the military I was so damned naive that I wish I could bitch slap my younger self.

I am activating my ace in the hole, which is a dual-citizenship courtesy of my immigrant parents (yes, they arrived with residence visas in-hand and obtained green cards).

There's nothing here worth saving.

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I cannot conceive that anybody will require multiplications at the rate of 40,000 or even 4,000 per hour ... -- F. H. Wales (1936)