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Comment Re:Here's an idea... (Score 2) 91

I'm not an expert, but I don't think the shuttle was designed for staying in space for more than about a month or so at a time. For one thing, it leaks oxygen. I don't think the space station is capable of supplying enough power right now to keep it operational when the power cells on the shuttle run dry.

Comment Re:Taking stock of the decades of the shuttle prog (Score 2) 91

If you're looking for tangibles, you can try this:

But in reality, the entire benefit of the space shuttle program isn't just in "stuff". Lots of the benefits can't be boiled down into metrics, like inspiring children, boosting national pride, etc. I'm not going to claim that with these benefits the shuttles were worth their cost, but you're missing a lot of the point if you only look at the tangibles.

Comment Re:Eh? (Score 1) 127

You're comparing apples and oranges. the original "apps" for iOS were just supposed to be HTML5 websites. WebOS uses html, css and javascript as part of the native apps that run on the device, and you can also write WebOS apps in C or C++ (through this wasn't true for the first six months the device was out). I don't know about Windows Phone 7, but im pretty sure that those apps are on the phone, not just special websites.

Comment Re:propaganda (Score 1) 289

Now you're changing your requirements to fit my evidence. You asked me to find any full English transcripts for 2006 onwards. I was able to find full English transcripts from Osama's broadcasts in 2011 in about 20 seconds, thereby disproving your assertion that "it's not possible". Since you then threw in the "mid 90's", I would suggest:

It's a very nice guide to Osama's writing from the mid 90's up to 2004, I used it in a class on modern Islam.

If you're worried about the accuracy, we're back to "learn it yourself" or consider finding someone you trust who already knows the language to verify the translation. This is back to trust, which you frankly seem to be trying to avoid. You could even use a site like mechanical turk - get several different disconnected strangers to translate it, and if they agree then you can probably trust the results (or there's a very large conspiracy, at which point there's no good advice I can give you.)

As to your issue with learning Arabic: "Do you seriously suggest that citizens of a supposedly free country must learn Arabic instead of insisting that their democracy actually functions?"

what? A functioning democracy isn't usually described as having free translation services for citizens too lazy to do the work themselves. Ignoring that, if you're really concerned about the lack of quality translation, you don't need to learn all those languages. Just find some people who share your distrust in everyone else and split up the work. I took first year arabic as part of my Middle Eastern studies minor - its a complete bitch, but it's not impossible. When I was in Morocco there were many shop owners who could speak passable French, Arabic, English, Spanish and Dutch. If you really wanted to learn these languages so you could study the world outside the english enclave you could, but I think you prefer to shout about how the man is oppressing you by not providing timely translations instead.

Finally, I think you have the sleeping part backwards. I went out of my way to learn about the Middle East, assimilate in Morocco and learn some Arabic. You just whine about the government not doing this for you. You're just in a nightmare of your own making.

Comment Re:Unity (Score 2) 249

I use it with two displays - a 22" and a 24", using the proprietary Nvidia drivers. While that's my "home" machine, at work I use Win 7 and Mac OS X frequently, so I'm sort of used to dealing with several different desktop "paradigms". I like that Unity is simple, attractive, and leaves me lots of space. If you're already using ubuntu, there's really no harm from trying it, since you can go back to whatever else you were using easily.

Comment Re:Forget about talking to cars -Talk2 traffic lig (Score 1) 239

Most of Southern NH has this - along with the sensors at the edge of each road where it meets the intersection, there is usually another a couple hundred meters back, so the intersection knows you are a few seconds from arriving. If you're coming from the non-dominant road at night, and there is no other traffic, it will turn your light green before you reach the intersection (you do end up slowing down a little, but its better than nothing...)

Comment Re:Well of course (Score 2, Informative) 436

Those "Uncivilized Savages" happened to give us:
The Scientific Method, Fountain Pen, Windmills, irrigation, the first eye surgeries, mathematical proofs, numerous advances in algebra, calculus, geometry; they practically invented chemistry... It goes on and on.

Their current oppressive regime problems happen to date back to the 1870's to 1950's (and on until now) thanks to intervention by "Civilized nations" like France, the United Kingdom, and the United States. The Ottoman empire, while by today's standards not exactly enlightened, had an extremely effective method of dealing with diverse populations and religions within it own borders - Jews moved there to flee from Christian persecution in Spain, for example.

Get out in the world and learn a bit about the Middle East - Its an intensely fascinating place that has been the center of so many things and events in our world, and deserves better then "Uncivilized Savages".

IAAMEH (I am a Middle Eastern Historian)

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