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Comment Re:Curly braces = good. Indents = bad. (Score 4, Insightful) 131

Python's stance is that the humans and the tools should use the same block identifiers. Sure there are other ways to solve the problem (like make the tools look for likely errors and warn the user), but Python chose the route of just getting people and tools on the same page - it's not a bad solution.

Sorry but it is a bad solution. I used to be a fan of indentation until I started writing large programs. Such big projects often require refactoring of the initial design and thus massive cut-and-pasting, with all the standard ensuing pitfalls.

This is a problem that clearly didn't occur to the Python designer and to this date is both unsolved and a major source of bugs.

Comment Re:God, I hope not (Score 1) 136

I've been a supporter of McLaren since I was a kid. I could never support an Apple F1 team. (or Google, or Microsoft, or Blackberry, or Facebook)

You are aware that Mercedes AMG has a deal with Blackberry with the logo prominently shown on the sides; Williams, BMW Sauber and Caterham used to have a deal with Intel; Lotus and Renault have a deal with Microsoft; Lotus, BMW Sauber and Caterham have a deal with Dell, and McLaren had a deal with SUN Microsystems?

Comment Re:Like suing McDonald's for hot coffee (Score 1) 100

The reason for this is that 180 to 190 degrees fahrenheit is the proper serving temperature for coffee.

No, 180 to 190 is the common temperature for serving coffee in America by cheap coffee purveyours, because of monetary reasons. Go to Europe and you will be hard pressed to find any coffee shop serving coffee at temperatures greater than 155 degrees, which is the temperature human subjects prefer their coffee at. Here's the relevant quote:

The preferred drinking temperature of coffee is specified in the literature as 140+/-15 degrees F (60+/-8.3 degrees C) for a population of 300 subjects.

In "Calculating the optimum temperature for serving hot beverages". Fredericka Brown, Kenneth R. Diller. University of Texas Austin. Published in the Journal Burns, August 2008Volume 34, Issue 5, Pages 648â"654.

Comment Re:"coding" is not CS! (Score 1) 240

Actually, the quote is deeper than most people think. Go to any astronomy department and you will find faculty members whose specialty is telescope design.

Dijkstra wasn't saying that computers are not CS, he was simply pointing out that they are not the ultimate end of what CS does, they are only a part of what CS is.

CS is about processing information, presently we use computers and code to do that, hence look at any CS department and you'll find professors doing research on those subjects, among others. But a hundred years hence you might find that most of those computer specialists are now programming on quantum computers or atomic computers or DNA computers and writing "code" means a completely different thing but it still CS, just like astronomy is still astronomy whether you are using an optical lens looking at the moons of Jupiter in the 1500s or using LIGO to discover gravitational waves from a supernova collision in the 2000s.

Comment Re:Good (Score 1) 278

officials that are appointed rather than elected

Is this any different than the current members of cabinet who are appointed by the PM?

Why such distaste with the appointed officers of the EU and yet deafening silence about the appointed members of the House of Lords?

I think you've been manipulated into focusing on a minor flaw of the EU, similar to ones you have at home, and believing it is somehow unacceptable and worth the unraveling of the union.

Would you agree with Scotland separating merely on the basis that the cabinet is not elected?

Comment Re:Why do names reflect the opposite so often? (Score 1) 170

It's an old rule of marketing. An adjective either very accurately describes the product or is the complete opposite, nothing in between.

Say for example, if you have a cereal called Nature's Best. It either is an organic tree-hugging, all vegan, hemp-tshirt inspired cereal or is the worst junk full of sugar and additives.

The explanation is straightforward, either you are an honest person and describe your product accurately or you are a crook, in which case you maximize your lie since it makes business sense.

Comment Re:DDoS Defense (Score 4, Insightful) 237

This is why slashdot sucks so much. I started reading /. back when the UIDs where in the 10k range, and only people who really knew about the subject would comment. It took me many months before I saw a topic I could contribute to with enough insight, hence my 100K UID.

Now, we have captain obvious noob giving a trivial "shut down" solution, which only works when the botnet is concentrated in an arrogant tone to the security experts in Verisign and Bruce Schneier. To top it off it gets ranked +4 Insightful.

p.s. Can we add a moderation score of -1 Rolls eyes?

Comment Re:Abolish Jobs (Score 1) 192

Instead, we should pay people to achieve the goals of civilization: maintaining land and buildings, participating in cultural events, having families, curating farms, maybe even maintaining old documents and cumulative knowledge.

Last I checked, science and creating of new knowledge are key components of civilization, which are surprisingly missing from your list.

Comment Re:Fools (Score 1) 192

The improvement of AI technology over the last two-three years made AI better than humans in many fields.

Driving wasn't solved by the improvements over the last two-three years. The big breakthrough was one of the DARPA competitions about a decade ago. Since then there have been many refinements, but the core of the developments happened there.

Comment Re:Unnecessary cushioning (Score 1) 130

What you say is true in the abstract, though to be accurate 4 is a special case of 3 if you think about it.

After each experiment, one must consider all five alternatives before reaching a conclusion. However in this specific case the only reasonable conclusions are 1 and 5, which is why bringing up the "correlation does not imply causation" is just a meme.

A valid comment would have been "wait, how big is the earthquake sample? how large is the increase in intensity?, could it be just random variation?". There is no way to answer those questions, so those will remain a mystery (unless we read the TFA that is, but who does that?).

Comment Re:Unnecessary cushioning (Score 4, Insightful) 130

Correlation does not imply causation.

This has become a /. meme. What is your suggestion here, that there is a third agent responsible both for earthquakes and full/new moons?

In real life, science correlation is often converted into causation using Occam's razor or logical physical principles. E.g. while there is nothing in theoretical physics forbidding the interpretation that the light about to start shining made you turn the switch, we choose for a variety of other reasons, the interpretation that the causation is the other way around, we turn on the switch, then the light goes on.

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Mathematicians stand on each other's shoulders. -- Gauss