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Comment Re:Right... and Wrong (Score 1) 1040

It seems to me that its not really that the Tea party bunch are so bad. Its that the rest are near their equals in the stakes of being so poor.

I'm an Anglophile. I hope the US gets back on its feet soon. The world needs you.

Please, for the love of all that is holy tell me you are joking. Nothing about the Tea party is rational and their having a "seat at the table" is what caused this non-sense in the first place. Their type of thinking is what caused this mess over the last 30 years and they behave like spoiled children even when they get their way. Unless we get rid of some military spending, we can't maintain our current debt load. And going after "entitlements" is basically stealing from the poor (SS is getting back your own money, not getting it from someone else). Most of our debt is from military spending, not from entitlements unless the FICA line on my paycheck is something else. We can't keep spending $700B a year on defense (that's about $2.3K per person each year) and keep not taxing the wealthy. Pick one and we'll talk. Until then they will continue to be the same people who didn't realize that teabagging is a sexual term and not a source of serious political thought or even adults.

Comment Re:FF 4.0 noisier than usual (Score 2) 554

I work for the company that created the back-end for that visualization, SQLStream. Disclaimer: I didn't work on this project, I work on our product team and I don't speak for my employer.

Its real. The apache logs are read by our streaming SQL backend, transfered to HBase and then used to generate the AJAX web front end. We make a streaming database which is architected much like a traditional DBMS with the additional capability of streams which act like tables but instead of being a destination for relational tuples on disk, they instead are conduits through which data flows. Think JMS with a standards based SQL control (publish is an insert, subscribe is a select). This allows for SQL queries to support streaming and windowed aggregation (think querying on a tuple's timestamp in addition to its data). I'm trying not to make this a cheap marketing ploy so if you want to know more, just go to our website:

Comment Distributed Computing (Score 1) 206

What you are describing is the problems around distributed systems. What would I do with a billion cores? Run tens of millions of instances of VMWare (x8 or 16 each) and write distributed code that runs on millions of machines. No shared memory, communication channels which are slow compared with computation? Basically, that's the line between distributed systems and non-distributed systems. Not that most distributed systems problems are solved, but this is the model that we would be investigating assuming no major shift in the computational model (turning vs quantum, etc).

Sticky Rice Is the Key To Super Strong Mortar 194

lilbridge writes "For over 1,500 years the Chinese have been using sticky rice as an ingredient in mortar, which has resulted in super strong buildings, many of which are still standing after hundreds of years. Scientists have been studying the sticky rice and lime mortar to unlock the secrets of its strength, and have just determined the secret ingredient that makes the mortar more stable and stronger. The scientists have also concluded that this mixture is the most appropriate for restoration of ancient and historic buildings, which means it is probably also appropriate for new construction as well."

Comment Re:My guess (Score 2, Insightful) 344

If that was the case, it you would see a more gradual decline in the traffic and not so regular usage across the board. Its looks like a bot net with significant infection in the countries with increased traffic after the first stripe. I'm sure something with more experience in this type of thing could tell us even more about it however...

Comment eliminates bias (Score 1) 2

There are a lot of potential valuable modern art (mostly ab ex) that even experts can't decide if it authentic. There are several Jackson Pollock works that can't be authenticated. In many of these cases, there are accusations of bias on all sides as the art world can be very subjective at its core. This type of system might help in those cases but the ramifications of depending upon such a system are complex to say the least. If this type of system became some sort of legal standard, it might even let forgers "debug" their works so as to copy a valuable work more accurately.

Comment Re:Sounds like a nice place to live (Score 1) 494

Do you really have problems with people throwing beer bottles at you?

Does this comment answer your question?

Here in Austin the frapping bikers are everywhere. It would be so much nicer if they'd stick to areas with bike lanes, parks, etc, rather than making their political point and stressing everybody out trying not to kill them. Get off the road!

Drivers are very impatient when it comes to cyclists and don't care if there are no available bike lanes which push cyclists onto the roads with faster traffic. In my experience, most drivers are very impatient and don't even want to wait on cyclists when it won't effect their arrival time. I've seen it get downright nasty even here in San Francisco (to the point of violence in some cases). The truth is that bikes are only practical in certain places, usually very dense population centers. And even there, there is generally quite a lot of friction between drivers and cyclists. Because of the anger among the cyclists, Critical Mass was started which generally only pisses off the drivers but also is a lot of fun.

And riding a bike in some locations does have a certain amount of cultural cashe (and yes, will even get you laid). The fact that an bike expert doesn't know this says more about the article's lack of research than anything.


Zombie Pigs First, Hibernating Soldiers Next 193

ColdWetDog writes "Wired is running a story on DARPA's effort to stave off battlefield casualties by turning injured soldiers into zombies by injecting them with a cocktail of one chemical or another (details to be announced). From the article, 'Dr. Fossum predicts that each soldier will carry a syringe into combat zones or remote areas, and medic teams will be equipped with several. A single injection will minimize metabolic needs, de-animating injured troops by shutting down brain and heart function. Once treatment can be carried out, they'll be "re-animated" and — hopefully — as good as new.' If it doesn't pan out we can at least get zombie bacon and spam."

Comment Re:I think it's great, but... (Score 4, Insightful) 121

Yes and no, water actually is a very good "thermal" battery. That is why coastal regions have a more temperate climate than inland region. Its cheap and we know a lot about how to move it around and have existing infrastructure for doing exactly that. Its not the most efficient way, but often it is the most practical and economical.

Comment Re:As a long-time contributor (Score 1) 632

Ok, my company (a small software startup) posted a Wikipedia article about itself but only included details about the founders, dates of operation and the space in which we compete. Our competitors of all sizes have similar Wikipedia pages. None of these pages including ours had links to anything other than the front page of their websites. Our page was deleted in under two weeks. I understand that you don't want wiki spam, but this wasn't a marketing effort. It was a good faith effort to add general information about our company to the wiki. While you might think its of no use, hundreds (hopefully many more in the future) of people who will search for us might like to see a Wiki entry that provides this type of basic information.

Either all of the companies' wiki entries are spam or they are not. The absence of these types of policies and the seemly capricious nature of these decisions is a problem. Its not that we don't agree that there is a lot of wiki spam. Its that the human editors are acting as the world's worst spam filter. Spam filters are judged not entirely by their accuracy rate. False positives are dramatically more important than false negatives and so we tolerate only a reduced amount of spam in exchange for very few valid emails being flagged as spam. More importantly, a software spam filter doesn't enforce a personal agenda.

The much bigger issue here for the Wiki org is that its alienating its most loyal users. Most companies have contact information on their products to identify the most involved customers because they influence sales by an order of magnitude more than other people. Wikipedia is in the interesting position of having those customers not only identify themselves, but contribute to their "product". But instead of welcoming this, they actively are driving them away. A curious behavior to say the lest.


Jetman Attempts Intercontinental Flight 140

Last year we ran the story of Yves Rossy and his DIY jetwings. Yves spent $190,000 and countless hours building a set of jet-powered wings which he used to cross the English Channel. Rossy's next goal is to cross the Strait of Gibraltar, from Tangier in Morocco and Tarifa on the southwestern tip of Spain. From the article: "Using a four-cylinder jet pack and carbon fibre wings spanning over 8ft, he will jump out of a plane at 6,500 ft and cruise at 130 mph until he reaches the Spanish coast, when he will parachute to earth." Update 18:57 GMT: mytrip writes: "Yves Rossy took off from Tangiers but five minutes into an expected 15-minute flight he was obliged to ditch into the wind-swept waters."

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