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Comment Re:"developed an artificial intelligence(AI) progr (Score 1) 153

The only thing the 1950s needed to obtain recent results in convolutional neural networks, was the planar process of 1959 and a suitably accelerated coefficient of Moore's law. We can get there by applying the inverse Hackermann function.

When planning a project, increase the amount of time that you estimate it will take by doubling the number and going up to the next time unit.

Dividing 18 by 2 and shifting to a lower unit gives us a doubling time of nine weeks. Probably we're recognizing cats by 1967. Before the modern API was half fleshed out.

Seriously, have you looked at the sophistication of mathematics in the 1950s?

Ramanujan surprises again

The discovery came when Ono and fellow mathematician Andrew Granville were leafing through Ramanujan's manuscripts, kept at the Wren Library at Trinity College, Cambridge. "We were sitting right next to the librarian's desk, flipping page by page through the Ramanujan box," recalls Ono. "We came across this one page which had on it the two representations of 1729 [as the sum of cubes]. We started laughing immediately." ...

What the equation in Ramanujan's manuscript illustrates is that Ramanujan had found a whole family (in fact an infinite family) of positive whole number triples x, y and z that very nearly, but not quite, satisfy Fermat's famous equation for n=3.
...

Ono and Trebat-Leder found that Ramanujan had also delved into the theory of elliptic curves. He did not anticipate the path taken by Wiles, but instead discovered an object that is more complicated than elliptic curves. When objects of this kind were rediscovered around forty years later they were adorned with the name of K3 surfaces — in honour of the mathematicians Ernst Kummer, Erich Kahler and Kunihiko Kodaira, and the mountain K2, which is as difficult to climb as K3 surfaces are difficult to handle mathematically.
...

His work amounts to one box, kept at Trinity College, and three notebooks, kept at the University of Madras. That's not a lot. It's crazy that we are still figuring out what he had in mind. When is it going to end?"

The book is not even closed yet on the mathematics of the 1920s.

Comment Re:most of those reasons have in common (Score 1) 249

Restated as 32% of Americans admit they disagree with American copyright law. Passing laws that most people don't agree with causes the people to stop respecting all laws, leading to them not respecting the government. This is a road that eventually ends with the ruling class dying in a violent revolution.

I ask you this: was less leadership ever required? Has a smaller, easier, less bitterly swallowed step ever been contemplated in the annals of the human condition?

On the "eventually" question, do you think before or after the Second Coming? (Name your sect if you wish, bearing in mind that a diligent and exhaustive land-title-search on "eventually" will set you back a king's ransom.)

In the 18th century, mathematicians such as Euler succeeded in summing some divergent series by stopping at the right moment; they did not much care whether a limit existed, as long as it could be calculated.

Likewise, we are less concerned here with whether history repeats itself in practice, than whether we can by facile bloviation declaim it so.

Comment Re:Retracting the Truth (Score 1) 65

They're saying that technically accurate or not, the article is misleading and doesn't give context. In particular, this supposed threat is almost impossible to exploit in practice, as it requires the attacker:

1. Knows exactly when you're going to swap a SIM card over or otherwise change phones
2. Also knows you simultaneously have a bunch of messages waiting to be sent, that the attacker actually cares about.
3. Also knows that you have gone into settings, and unchecked a setting that would normally be checked that warns you if a change in encryption keys has occurred
4. Has access to all the infrastructure in the middle.

That's a tall order. It'd be easier to just steal your phone, or hit you on the head with a blunt instrument XKCD style until you talk.

The letter also points out that the article discourages people from using a popular messaging platform over this issue whose security is generally first rate, encouraging them to seek alternatives that either may be insecure, or may be taken as a sign of guilt (eg Signal), making it easier to pinpoint dissidents with something to hide.

So, yeah, the article may be technically correct, the best kind of correct, but if it leaves people with a false impression, then it's probably right to withdraw it.

Comment Re:Not impulsive at all (Score 1) 1302

Yeah, I must admit I'm on the impulsive side though. The entire conspiracy theory that, for example, he tweets to draw attention away from the crap he's doing has two fatal flaws: he's always tweeted like that, and he doesn't actually apparently give a rat's ass if anyone knows he's corrupt and racist.

He's essentially had some luck in his life, but doesn't strike me as particularly smart or calculating. He apparently based his election campaign by studying Mussolini, apparently oblivious to the long term damage such a strategy will cause to, well, pretty much everyone.

I'm not seeing it. I see someone impulsive and thin skinned, who takes the easy route when offered, and has little imagination or understanding of people.

Comment Re:How (Score 1) 64

The only part of that that sounds potentially unkosher is the unlimited miles on the leases. Everything else looks like just a matter of people failing to do their own damned due diligence.

Every employer brags about their awesome compensation package; any employee making $20.50/hour (the average for a NYC Uber driver) who thinks they'll make $90k a year damned well better plan on working 12 hours a day, 7 days a week. And their leases sucked? Hey, maybe shop the fuck around before you pay someone (especially your employer) for a product or service offered by a million other sources?

Comment Re:Agrument in favor of modularity (Score 1) 80

I'm not quite down there, but I started carrying Palm Pilots back in the late nineties, and those devices were used for address/contacts lists, some light-duty spreadsheet or document viewing and editing, some maps, some PDFs from time to time, some early ebook stuff.

I do look for the technology like a good web browser and other stuff, but I do not expect a phone to be a VR device or honestly, even a good camera. I need it for its ability to retrieve or display information.

Comment Re:Agrument in favor of modularity (Score 1) 80

And if the phone is modular and was sold through a carrier that has a brick-and-mortar presence, you start by having the carrier send notifications to the handsets on its network to come in and exchange the battery. After that first round, you start being more insistent about it and you possibly disable a feature like high-speed data until they bring it in. For those that continue to ignore it, you brick the phone. You set up a means for the clerk to note that a particular phone's battery has been swapped so to exempt them from the various actions.

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