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Comment Re:Next (Score 1) 134

The Vatican having some secrets doesn't negate the fact that every significant doctrine of Catholicism is public knowledge.

Likewise, the inaccessibility of some parts of some synagogues and holy sites doesn't negate the fact that every significant doctrine of Judaism and Islam is public knowledge.

Quite a big difference from Scientology and other cults where a lot of information about what the leaders believe is deliberately held back from potential converts.

Comment Re:Next (Score 1) 134

I think we can at least require that the religion's tenets be sincerely held by members and leaders alike. (In general; if some individuals disbelieve that needn't deligitimize the entire religion.)

This implies that the members and leaders share the same tenets and generally means those tenets are publicly known, not secret.

Comment Re: Hmm (Score 1) 1028

That Wikipedia article completely contradicts what you said. It says:

> the cumulative products of 100 of these firestorms would unmistakably cool the global climate by approximately 1 ÂC (1.8 ÂF), largely eliminating the magnitude of anthropogenic global warming for two to three years

i.e. the climactic effect "100 bombs" would be no more than a brief reversal of the current warming trend. The much more severe impact you quoted requires a much larger number of bombs, and, as the article goes on to point out, is based on highly questionable assumptions.

Comment Re:Rust is going to eat C's lunch (Score 2) 232

Rust allows programming "closer to the metal" than those languages. For example, Go, Nim, Scala and Haxe all require a garbage collector in practice for significantly complex programs. This makes it difficult (or at least heavyweight) to embed components in those languages into other languages and makes memory usage more difficult to reason about. This makes it easier to use Rust as a drop-in replacement for C or C++.

(Rust has other advantages over each of those other languages too.)

Comment Re:problems, lol (Score 3, Insightful) 232

The reality is that programmers make lots of mistakes, no matter how smart they are, how educated they are, or how hard they try.

Another reality is that even if the really brilliant programmers never made mistakes, there aren't enough of them to create all the software that the world needs.

Fortunately, in the 44 years since C was created, we've learned how to design languages that are easier to use and prevent or detect many of the worst kinds of mistakes. Recently we've even learned how to do that without giving up the power C programmers need.

Comment Re:autonomous taxi services are the real game-chan (Score 1) 101

Owning my own car isn't all that convenient. I have to have it serviced. I have to refuel it. It's not always the ideal model for the task at hand. Every so often I have the hellish experience of buying another one. I have to juggle usage with other family members (or spend significantly more money for another vehicle that'll be less used).

Autonomous taxis would be more convenient than taxis driven by real people simply because you could afford to have a lot more of them on the road.

Even in rush hour, it would be common for an autonomous car to complete multiple trips so there's still a significant increase in utilization there. Also, sane road rules would give one-person micro-cars preferential treatment over space-wasting big cars.

Comment autonomous taxi services are the real game-changer (Score 1) 101

More than any other change in the car industry, autonomous taxi services would make things massively better. Once you make it cheaper and more convenient for most people to use the taxi service than to own your own car, then:

You can customize your car to the journey. One-person 3km trip? Hail a short-range one-person electric car. No need to drive a big car just because you need it once in a while. This leads to a massive reduction in average vehicle size on the roads, and big reductions in energy consumption.

Most people won't need driveways and garages anymore. Extend your house or put in a garden.

Large reduction in the need for on-street and off-street parking. Replace on-street parking with pickup/dropoff bays and/or bike lanes and/or more general lanes.

On one hand, this would reduce public transport usage by providing a more convenient alternative for many people. On the other hand, this would increase public transport usage by reducing instances where people drive from A to B only because they'll need their car to get from B to C. Both of those cases are wins.

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