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Comment Old stuff "discovered" by the ignorant (Score 5, Informative) 505

I am an economist. Economists have already extensively studied this kind of approach. It's called an Input/Output Model. Communist countries used it in their approach to central planning during the 1970's. It failed miserably for two reasons:

1) It assumes zero substitutability between inputs. E.g., to make a car you need exactly 1.35 tons of steel, 52.7 kg of rubber, 217 kg of glass, 1.73 KW of electricity, 29.4 hours of labor, etc. No other formula is possible, you can't use more energy and less labor, for instance. For reference, the production function is known as a Leontief production function. To be fair, adding any kind of substitutability between inputs results in a completely intractable problem. However, without substitutability this is a lousy way to actually model an economy.

2) It assumes perfect information on the part of the central planner. While this is an oft-used simplification in economic models, it's a lousy reflection of reality. It's simply impossible for a central planner to gather and correlate sufficient information to make it work.

Yet another piece-of-crap opinion article written by someone who couldn't be bothered to do an hour's research on Wikipedia.

Comment Re:Other things we don't know (Score 2) 142

Of course, if the system actually uses a resolution that accurate, it's quite likely you won't even be your own doppelganger. Retaining water would be enough to throw it off.

I'd wager that evolution and neural net learning has struck a pretty optimal balance between false positives and false negatives for this in the human brain.

Oh, and the human system definitely uses measures the researchers didn't take in this study; ever failed to recognize someone because they're not in the same context you usually see them? Heck, I once spent 2 hours on a train talking to someone I thought I sort of recognized. A day later I realized I'd been talking to a (former) CEO of one of the biggest companies in the country, but of course, I wasn't exactly used to seeing him outside TV or newspapers. Ah, well, at least he got an early insight into free software.

Submission + - Asian Americans use Google Docs to Fight Prejudice

plsuh writes: Little-known outside the Asian American community there is a strong strain of racism against blacks, especially among the older generation. As reported in the Washington Post, in the wake of the shootings in Louisiana and Minnesota Christina Xu and a group of online contributors used the joint editing capabilities of Google Docs to create an open letter about the significance of the Black Lives Matter movement. The letter is addressed to "Mom, Dad, Uncle, Auntie" — the first generation of immigrants who may not understand and harbor prejudices of their own from the old country. Translations into Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Vietnamese, and tens of other languages are in progress.

Comment Re:As it's been said... (Score 4, Insightful) 621

The commission is the only entity that can propose legislation. Usually, you do elect the people who can propose legislation.

The power of the actual elected body, the European Parliament, is still quite limited. They don't even have enough power to prevent their forced relocation from Brussles to Strassbourgh every month, rather being caught in a perpetual schoolyard bully 'stop hitting yourself' moment. They've managed to block legislation, what, once in history?

There are good and bad things about the EU, but democratic credibility isn't one of the good ones.

Comment Re:This is BS (Score 1) 440

Yeah, I think it's quite common in most places for the same reasons you mention. And a human or an autonomous car with more situational awareness can deal with those situations by being extra alert and careful and keeping a pre-planned problem resolution at hand (ie, ensuring there's space behind/at the side to emergency break while passing).

But the Tesla just drives right into it, keeps a speed that might as well have been planned to make it invisible to the truck, while closing the distance to the car in front in a place where the road layout makes it look like it's intentionally cutting people from the merging road off from being able to take the exit. It's really bad behaviour.

I can't even say that it's good that it's collision avoidance managed to avoid the collision, because it that's how it works, there's a high chance that people will start to figure 'oh, look, I'm being cut off by a Tesla being a dick. No problem, it's fast enough to deal with me forcing myself into its lane.'.

Comment Re:This is BS (Score 1) 440

In the near miss video the Tesla is engaged in behaviour that is so dangerous that it's illegal in many countries, as it's overtaking the truck in the outside lane. The legality might be a bit mitigated due to what seems to be a road merge right before, so the lane speeds might not have gotten sorted out, but considering the off-ramp or whatever it is that the truck is heading for, it's a traffic situation where exactly what happened is highly likely to happen. A situation where most human drivers would be very, very careful about exactly what that truck was doing if they intended to pass it. And where any real autonomous car should absolutely not be moving faster than the cars in the lanes to the left at anywhere near highway speeds.

Comment This isn't a victory for Behring-Breivik. (Score 3, Insightful) 491

Someone once pointed out that hoping a rapist gets raped in prison isn't a victory for his victim(s), because it somehow gives him what he had coming to him, but it's actually a victory for rape and violence. I wish I could remember who said that, because they are right. The score doesn't go Rapist: 1 World: 1. It goes Rape: 2.

What this man did is unspeakable, and he absolutely deserves to spend the rest of his life in prison. If he needs to be kept away from other prisoners as a safety issue, there are ways to do that without keeping him in solitary confinement, which has been shown conclusively to be profoundly cruel and harmful.

Putting him in solitary confinement, as a punitive measure, is not a victory for the good people in the world. It's a victory for inhumane treatment of human beings. This ruling is, in my opinion, very good and very strong for human rights, *precisely* because it was brought by such a despicable and horrible person. It affirms that all of us have basic human rights, even the absolute worst of us on this planet.

Comment Re:Negotiating (Score 1) 455

Reading the actual article (sorry...) the actual reason is that 'computer programmer' in this case means (more or less) 'mainframe programmer'.

The study also includes the titles we would normally be including in 'computer programmer', and they have slightly different statistics...:
Software Engineer – $0.94
Mobile Developer – $0.97

Comment Re:What if it had supported "social justice"? (Score 4, Interesting) 572

Well, it's hardly surprising if the bot used Twitter to build its responses, Twitter seems to excel in dragging it's users mental capacity down into the gutters. Exposing it to Tumblr would probably have resulted in something more stereotypically 'teen girl', and putting it in a class on critical theory and you'd get a random generator of meaningless words.

Neo-Nazi Sex Robot has a better sales potential than windows mobile though, maybe Microsoft should see if it can aquire Boston Dynamics from Google and combine these revolutionary technologies into a truly spectacular future for humankind.

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