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To Boldly Go Nowhere, For Now 308

An anonymous reader writes "A recent Slate article makes the argument that manned space exploration is not useful and we should concentrate on Robots. The article makes the claim that manned space exploration was never popular and by diverting money to robotic space exploration we can get more bang for the buck. From the article: 'Most of the arguments in favor of manned space exploration boil down to the following: a) We need to explore space using people since keeping the entire human race on a single piece of rock is a bad strategy, and even if we send robots first, people would have to make the journey eventually; and b) humans can explore much better than robots. Both these arguments are very near-sighted—in large part because they assume that robots aren’t going to get any better. They also fail to recognize that technology may radically change humans in the next century or so.'"

Comment Re:Brazil always answers to USA (Score 1) 285

First, they don't care if they change it or not. The US can change it or not, and Brazil will maintain reciprocity. Reciprocity is about fairness, not about forcing change.

Second, it does not reduce the number of Americans traveling to Brazil because, believe it or don't, most Americans who have the means to travel don't have trouble meeting the financial criteria to get a visa to the US (which is the chief problem poor foreigners run into when trying to come here).

Comment I don't like it (Score 4, Insightful) 230

With this move, they are now beholden to shareholders (i.e. the Venture Capitalists) and profit is the #1 priority, despite the flowery, rainbow-colored unicorn fantasy they are promoting.

I'd bet dollars to donuts that CM is going to become payware and possibly even supported by ads integrated directly into the O/S, with underlying information snooping software that gives them your private info so they can sell it to marketing firms.

So, no, I don't like it one bit.

Comment Re:Brazil always answers to USA (Score 4, Interesting) 285

Brazil has a policy of absolute reciprocity when it comes to immigration. Brazil requires the same of US Residents applying for a Brazilian visa as the US requires of Brazilian Residents applying for a US Visa.

Any requirement imposed upon Brazilian citizens by any other country is reciprocated toward that country's citizens. It makes perfect sense to do it that way.

Comment Re:Obama and the FCC dont get cell phone tech (Score 3, Interesting) 378

You can't have that many antennas in the phone without it being too big. There are half a dozen frequency bands ranging from 700Mhz all the way up to 2100MHz, and one antenna will not do it all.

Sure, it's easy enough to have a software defined radio like they do, but the amplifiers, LNAs, matching networks, and antennas are all cut for one or maybe two bands.


Arrested Chinese Blogger "Confesses" On State TV, Praises Censorship 349

Koreantoast writes "As part of a broader, chilling Chinese crackdown on Internet dissent, Chinese blogger Charles Xue appeared on Chinese state television in handcuffs on Sunday, denouncing his blog and praising government censorship. He 'confessed' to becoming drunk on the accumulated power of his Weibo blog, which peaked at 12 million followers, and confessed to recklessly spreading unverified rumors and slander, disrupting social harmony and becoming a vent of negative emotion on mainstream society. He also praised new government legislation cracking down on Internet freedom, stating how dangerous the Internet would be if left uncontrolled by the government. Xue was arrested on prostitution solicitation charges though his television confession did not discuss that. His arrest was also suspiciously around the same time as a broader government sweep that picked up other Chinese Internet activists."

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