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Comment Re:Due process matters more than Snowden (Score 1) 335

United States Constitution, Article II, Section 2 reads in part:
The President ... shall have Power to grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offenses against the United States, except in Cases of Impeachment.

A pardon IS due process.

The right response for Snowden is a pardon. Any other response would be to make him a political prisoner.

Ideally the pardon should be accompanied by the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and perhaps the Nobel Committee should also see fit to award him the peace prize.

Comment Re:Whistle-blower defense (Score 1) 335

He absolutely does get to dictate what charges he will face. He has the option of not returning to a country that will persecute him unless that country offers him the only acceptable solution - a guarantee that there will be no charges.

And he absolutely should be held accountable for his actions. That accountability should be in the form of a pardon and the Presidential Medal of Freedom. No other accountability is appropriate.

He is a hero to the United States and to the world.

Comment Re:Trial in Absentia (Score 1) 335

There is absolutely no requirement in the Constitution that a person have been convicted of any crime before receiving a pardon, and there is certainly precedent for pardons being given without charges ever having been filed.

The pardon is a part of the process of law, not a circumvention of it. It's not used nearly often enough.

Edward Snowden is being accused of a political crime. A pardon is the appropriate legal solution.

Comment Re:Wouldn't need subsidies (Score 1) 179

We don't necessarily have to tax carbon emissions. We can tax coal, oil, and gas production instead. We can end the depletion deduction. We can make fossil fuel production companies ineligible for any subsidies or deductions. We can ban fracking.

There are plenty of things we can do to make it much more expensive to use fossil fuel than to use renewables without subsidizing nuclear or taxing carbon emissions directly.

Comment Why Oracle? (Score 2) 113

So, maybe somebody here can answer this...

Why would you use Oracle for anything? Is there really something that Oracle does that an open-source database can't do? I mean, they're clearly a horrific company to do business with, it would seem that if there's any other solution that would work it would be an obvious choice not to use Oracle.

I'm not a database guy, it's a real question.

Comment Re:Fools (Score 2) 192

"Fancy cruise control" as you call it is already a product, is already in shipping cars, and you can buy it today. It's not five years away. Some currently available mass production cars already have the ability to maintain their lane, change lanes when directed, and maintain speed and distance in traffic. It's not just research and development, it's for sale.

What's going to be here in five years is a product that will take you from point A to point B without you doing anything but telling it where you want to be. Those points will likely not initially be any point in the country, but they will likely be any point within a city that's accessible by city street. Successful research and development leads to products, and by every reasonable measure, the current research and development is very successful, since they're already putting those research and development cars on the public streets.

And since you mention freeways, driving on the freeway is actually the easy part. City streets are a much harder problem, but they're a problem that's also nearly solved.

Please explain why you think I don't know what I'm talking about. Do you think the technology demonstrations have all been faked? Do you have some sort of insider knowledge about it not working that contradicts all the information that's been published about how well these systems work now?

You're declaring it "hype" when anybody paying attention can see it's happening. So please, if you've got something useful to add, do so.

Comment Re:Fools (Score 2) 192

What you don't seem to understand is that it's already there, on public roads now.
It's not decades away. It's already happening.
And it's less than a decade from being a product that you can go buy.
People were scared when elevators stopped having operators too. Sure, elevators are an easy problem, cars are a hard problem.
But when AIs have already driven millions of miles on public roads in traffic, you can't claim that it isn't going to happen without sounding like a crazy person.
And you can't claim that it won't be allowed to happen for decades when it's already being allowed without sounding a bit deranged.

Comment Re:Great! (Score 1) 192

The point is that the technology already works. At this point, it's all about refining it. And it's a very reasonable assumption that they're going to make that ship date, because they've got five years to refine a technology that is already workable now.

This is not some far-off maybe scenario. Self-driving cars are on the road today. Millions of miles have been driven by computers. They will be a product, and they will be a product within five years.

Comment Re:chess has fixed rules and paths cars do not (Score 1) 192

Sure they do. Cars are pretty much stuck in Newtonian physics.

Most of the issues that exist while driving are defined by making guesses about what other things are on the road are going to do. A human has visual and audio and to a much lesser extent tactile cues about that, and makes decisions from those inputs. An AI can have those inputs along with additional data. A human has typically at best a 220 degree field of view. The AI gets 360. It can monitor small cues in every direction to determine what's most likely to happen next and can actually make a better guess than a human, because it can acquire and process more data.

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Heisengberg might have been here.