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Comment Re:Do not push this button (Score 2) 192

Thesupraman has everything right and I'm just filling in background.

What makes a radioisotope dangerous is
1. A long enough half-life that it is still around when the plume reaches its first victims
2. A short enough half-life to be intensely radioactive.
3. A tendency to get stuck in the body by looking like something the body normally uses. Strontium-90 mimics calcium. Iodine is iodine.

I've seen potassium iodide in mail order catalogs.

Comment Hotline numbers and other resources (Score 4, Informative) 381

US: 1-800-273-8255 is a 24/7 suicide prevention hotline, which also advises people dealing with a suicidal loved one or friend.


For US active duty military and veterans:
Veteran's Crisis Line:
Press 1
or text 838255

confidential chat available at: www.veteranscrisisline.net

Specifically for support of trans* people, http://www.translifeline.org/ has a US hotline number +18775658860 and a Canadian toll-free number +18773306366.

For LGBT teenagers and young adults, http://www.thetrevorproject.or.... They also have a hotline number, 866-488-7386.

If you're a friend or bystander, these are relevant.
Suicide threats on social media:
If you're in the US this is a guide to reaching emergency services outside your own area: http://firstaid.about.com/od/c...
Immediate steps you can take: http://www.helpguide.org/artic...

Comment Re:Justice (Score 2) 99

That depends on whose version of the incident response costs is true.

The defense as I understand it says it was a matter of clicking revert and took less time than scrubbing out graffiti.

The prosecution claims the cost to the victim was 333 hours. On the other hand they included some response work to different incidents for which he had not been on trial.

Comment Re:I fail to see the problem here (Score 1) 93

Burdell has pointed out the real story.

"The search warrant seeks to have Microsoft â" which owns Skype â" provide the government with logs and the content of conversations and written messages made on Ciccoloâ(TM)s account, as well as passwords."

If Microsoft is in fact recording the content of Skype conversations, that really is news for nerds.

Comment Re:Where do inmates get money for calls? (Score 1) 197

Inmates have small accounts with the facility which they can feed from their 12-42 cent/hour jobs, or, if they're fortunate, with gifts from friends on the outside.
They can spend the money on phone calls or items from the prison commissary, for example toothpaste, stamps, and vitamins.
The last time I looked, the Federal system was charging inmates 6 cents per minute to make _collect_ calls. In other words, to talk to your children for five minutes, you'd have to work two and a half hours at one of the entry-level jobs, or most of an hour at a skilled trade.

Comment Re:This is evil, and incompetence at so many level (Score 1) 197

Is it corruption if the money goes to the institution and not into the administrator's pockets? The firms that gouge prisoners offer "facility commissions" to share their revenue with the prisons.
JPay has been reported to entertain wardens lavishly, but I haven't heard of actual bribery.

Comment PCI DSS is a mixed bag (Score 1) 101

At its best it's prescriptive and incorporates some sound practices. At its worst, it's as bad as you say.

At least one cynical person has suspected it's all just a way for the card issuers to shift liability to merchants ("Your Honor, we will show the defendant was out of compliance with the following vague language ...").

At least it's better than HIPAA but that's setting the bar pretty low.

Comment Why that's a real issue (Score 2) 391

That law puts decision making burdens on the wrong people and there are no end of debatable cases.

The police department of a nearby city told an employer that the picture of a young boy in his underwear on an employee's computer was actionable.

On the other hand, if an "IT technician" gets too sensitive, people with bathtub photos of their kids are going to have their lives ruined.

Then there's the issue of whether it's even safe to report things. Right here on Slashdot, someone who runs a porn hosting business said that the first time they found a customer running underage porn, they contacted the authorities. The authorities then threatened to prosecute the hosting firm. When that firm finds child porn today they silently fire the customer and delete the content.

Comment Re:Deniers? (Score 3, Insightful) 507

When all else fails, watch the way the parties debate and assess their credibility from their actions.

On one hand, there are scientists who tell you what their error bars are, talk in terms of probabilities, and tell you where they need more data to offer firmer forecasts.

On the other side I have heard
o The planet is not warming up, satellite measurements prove it
o The warming, which isn't happening, ended in 1998
o The warming, which isn't happening, which ended in 1998, is caused by carbon dioxide from volcanoes
o The warming which isn't happening which ended in 1998 which is caused by CO2 from volcanoes has nothing to do with CO2 but is caused by solar output changes

There's more.

Some of it is honest backlash against people who go beyond the evidence. I dismiss anyone who talks about "saving the planet". The planet was just fine with palm trees growing in Antarctica.

Most of it is cynically calculated intentional disinformation. See the book "The Climate Coverup" for examples of how talking points were tested in focus groups without any investigation into whether they were true.

Then consider, if you don't believe the scientists, that they could be wrong in either direction and things could be worse than they expect. There's actually some data to suggest exactly that. See the book "With Speed and Violence", from a science magazine editor who has excellent BS filters.

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