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Comment Must live in a small country. 2,000 Km, 1 train (Score 1) 144

Let me guess, you live in a densely populated city, in a small country. (Where small means smaller than a US state, such as Texas.) Electric makes sense when you have many trains on relatively short tracks, so that a train passes every few minutes. US commuter systems like New York's subway benefit from being electric.

North Dakota is over 2,000 kilometers from the destination, the refineries south of Houston. Between the two locations, you'll find Dallas and a bunch of cattle. Not much else, just cattle and open plains for 2,000 Km. With nothing out there, there are no commuters, so the train goes by once per day or so. Building out thousands of kilometers of third rail for one train to use each day would be really, really silly.

Besides, it wouldn't be allowed because a green-eyed, three-toe New Mexico mosquito lizard might electrocute himself.

Comment I'd believe it if you didn't say performance & (Score 1) 247

> Java is definitely the preferred language over those for reliability, uptime, performance, security, and manageability and maintainability of the source code.

I would have believed you if you didn't say performance and security. Since you claimed Java has great performance and security I kow you're just trolling. :)

Comment most engineering is applied math (Score 1) 197

Mechanical engineering is applied math.
Therefore, if you have a math background, you're all set to be an engineer - no engineering classes required, right?

A good math background will make CS much easier. It is, however, a distinct discipline. For example, to study algorithmic complexity, some math is needed, so someone who already understands the pure math will have a head start. However, they still need to learn the patterns to quickly estimate complexity and be able to "see" which type of algorithm might have lower complexity.

In many ways, CompSci is to finite math as finite math is to arithmetic. You need arithmetic to learn all of finite math, because it's based on arithmetic, but it goes beyond arithmetic. So to CompSci requires knowledge of set theory and other finite math, but it goes beyond. See for example SQL, aka relational algebra and relational calculus. A math background will teach you about set operations, but SQL is set algebra on sets on tuples. You don't normally restrict sets of projected tuples in math class.

Comment sed, awk, grep, expr (Score 1) 197

You're not going to write much useful software in bash without calling expr, sed, awk, grep, etc. - all separate programs. When you use echo, basename, etc. you don't necessarily KNOW whether you're calling an external program or not.

On the other hand, an experienced Perl programmer rarely calls external programs. The full functionality of sed, awk, grep, basename, echo, and most other system utilities is available within the Perl language itself. The one notable thing Perl often opens a pipe to is sendmail, for configuration purposes. You could write sendmail in pure Perl. In shell, even "hello world" may well call /bin/echo . Perl is an interpreted language, shell is a scripting language.

This most certainly does not mean shell is BAD. She'll scripts are very useful. They are useful SCRIPTS.

Comment $35 unlimited everything from Boost. Phone subsidi (Score 1) 273

With the discount for on-time payments, I pay $35 for unlimited talk, text, and web on the Sprint network. That's no contract, so certainly good prices are available.

Of course, many people pay $85 for the phone subsidy that comes with a three year contract. An extra $50 / month will certainly increase the bill. $50 for 36 months is $1,800 for a "free" phone that's worth $250. No thanks. I don't recall how often you can get a new phone subsidized, but if it's a $200 credit once a year and people are paying $50 / month for that benefit ...

Comment THREE environmental studies by liberals say yes (Score 1) 144

The Obama administration recently completed the THIRD environmental impact study of the pipeline. Like the first two, it concluded that piping oil is better for the environment than what's happening now - rail cars crashing, leaking , occasionally exploding , while burning tons of diesel to power the trains.

Comment we just pad to the next X bytes, where X is small (Score 1) 17

What we do, and have done for many years, is just pad to the nearest X bytes, where X is roughly size / 30. That's small enough that it makes little difference in speed, but many resources end up being the same size.

Consider as an example the Mayo clinic web site. Each page is maybe 5KB for the html itself. The graphics for the logo, nav bar, etc.are separate requests, cached after the home page. 80% of the html is template stuff - the header, the footer, the nav bar, overall page structure. Maybe 20%, or 1KB, is different on each page. Most pages have 500-1,000 bytes of unique content. So pad up to the nearest 100 bytes. You aren't going to notice any slowdown from an extra 50 bytes, but if most pages are an even multiple of 100 and their sizes generally don't differ by more than 1,000 bytes, about 10% of all the pages on the site will pad out to the same size as the requested page - foiling the attack.

It seems to have worked. The bad guys discuss our security system on the crack forums regularly, but there's been no mention of a successful sized-based attack.

Comment Congress,abridge and THE freedom, important words (Score 1) 519

You'll note the second amendment says "Congress shall not", it says what Congrss may not do. It does not claim to give citizens any right at all. Instead, it says Congress may not abridge THE right. Not that they must give you some new right, but that they must not violate THE right, the right you already have, by virtue of being human.

The plain wording of the Constitution simply recognizes that you have these rights and the government shouldn't violate them. Nowhere dies it define what exactly "the freedom of speech" is. Perhaps the reason the founders didn't feel the need to define these rights is because they were already defined in the existing law, English common law. I think you'll find that at the time they wrote "THE freedom of speech", they understood that freedom to include unpopular speech, but not shouting fire in a crowded theatre, libel, and a few other things.

This fact, that the ConConstitution speaks of protecting pre-existing rights, is crucially important. If your rights were not pre-existing as part of bring human, they must have been given to you by government. What government can give, government can take away. The Constitution rejects that view. Because your rights are endowed by your creator, legal documents can neither remove the nor define them. The Constitution doesn't define the freedom of speech because it can't. If it could, it could define freedom of speech as freedom to say approved things. The definition is elsewhere, as it must be.

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