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Comment Re:The size of the farm shouldn't matter.... (Score 1) 150

We just need someone insightful and ingenious to find a way to deal with machine learning in an 'offline' way, and be able to present the user interface in a quick fashion.

It would have to start out very dumb, but with some great key algorithms I expect an open source option could move a lot faster than anything out there in this regard.

Precisely. I don't get what the misunderstanding is here among the Slashdot crowd.

Natural Language Processing is neat tech. Mechanics of speech recognition is neat tech. Integration of the two via a dispatch engine and scriptlets to go off an search Google, run a command, or whatever else one can script, is neat tech.

I'd use this ALL THE TIME if the data didn't leave my network, and I'm sure I'm not alone.

We can't duplicate a zillion far off machines running a Google-scale cluster, but it's hard to see why we need to in OSS land. I have a spare 32 core box and God-knows-how-many GPUs sitting here. Where's the project that can let me get up and running on my own, and that we can all use to iterate over as public algorithms (inevitably) improve and storage/memory/processing costs (inevitably) decrease.

Frankly, it's difficult to see why that type of infrastructure is really needed in the first place. NLP is hard, but it's not like these building blocks aren't already there. Apple's dictation software (PlainTalk) was running on System 7.1 Pro 20 years ago, using local hardware 100's of times slower than what I have in my pocket. Basic NLP code was running on the Newton, which was 1000x slower and still managed to handle the basics on top of the handwriting recognition. "Speakable Items" let me run user-writable AppleScripts to automate tasks and was just missing dictatable variable names.

None of this required cloud-level processing, especially not voice recognition, which even Apple lets you do locally w/o using Siri.

Comment Re:So basically... (Score 1) 614

That's their right. Luckey's right is to speak against Hillary, VR devs' right is to be intolerant to Luckey, a consumer's right is to boycott those VR devs because of their siding with Hillary and so on.

As long as we all have those rights and are exercising them legally it works itself out. It's sad that so much hate is going on but you can't blame Trump or Hillary for that -- it's the state of the world at the moment that created the conditions for it. In a wiser world such conditions would be prevented before Trump or Hillary would rise to prominence, but it is what it is.

While this is absolutely true, it doesn't mean it's good -- in the long term -- for American culture to slide into "I'll boycott anyone I disagree with about anything" mentality, because it reduces social cohesion and increases social friction.

As a libertarianish conservative, I agree 100% with people's free speech, and free speech about others free speech, and economic boycotts about others' free speech. I still lament that it has come to this and hope this age passes quickly. There's a resonant effect that will kick in once the folks who grew up in a "not my president!" post-2000 mentality start having and training kids of their own; if this dumb political intolerance of other Americans doesn't stop, it'll be that much harder to turn around.

We haven't seen a first-world country devolve into civil war. I'd hate to start it now.

Comment Re:Worse than Win10 for Privacy defaults (Score 1) 200

I've got to imagine that some of this stuff is not going to go down well with corporate users

MacOS has corporate users?

Actually, yeah it does. Probably more on corporate tech than corporate corporate, but it's there.

From what I've observed, Macs have generally fewer runtime and operational issues, but more configuration issues for IT to deal with.

Comment Worse than Win10 for Privacy defaults (Score 3, Interesting) 200

I've got to imagine that some of this stuff is not going to go down well with corporate users, unless they can lock it down real tight.

"Here, we'll automatically upload stuff to the Cloud and remove it from your local computer if we don't think you need it."
"You can have us permanently store your voice and background conversations and run it through our linguistic analysis AI even if you're not dictating anything."

With all of the other privacy and security issues surrounding smartphones, making laptops more smartphone-like doesn't seem like a benefit.

Comment Re:Epipen cost: $30, regulatory costs: $30 mil+ (Score 1) 325

The Epipen is *not* idiot-proof though. Lots of childcare professions (school nurse, daycare worker, etc.) require training in how to use it. And the entire reason everyone is supposed to carry 2 of them around is the high rate of people using it wrong. Supposedly some of the competing designs are significantly more idiot-proof.

They actually didn't pass reg approval for the exact opposite reason. They weren't more idiot-proof, and occasionally failed in awesome ways (like giving a larger dose than intended).

Comment Re:Single payer system would avoid this problem (Score 1) 325

Nope. From your description you don't have any experience with the US health care system. You opted to leave the US rather than make use of it.

My family member was in a US hospital. The costs were exorbitant and the standard of care was, at best, no better than the UK. Even with the flight cost, the UK hospital was the better option. But hey, don't take my word for it.

I've literally never heard that from anybody in person. UK folks coming here complain about cost, and office wait times if they pick bad hospitals or doctors, because they're not used to having a choice. Everyone else has been pleased with their service, and the quality of the care itself, as long as they were able to pay for it.

Comment Re:Single payer system would avoid this problem (Score 1) 325

The uninsured have no negotiating power, and get charged 10x, 50x or more for the same exact services.

Actually, that's not *entirely* accurate. If you're uninsured but might have a reasonable chance of paying something in cash, you can often negotiate down to something more reasonable, depending on what's happened. The "list price" of medical services is more so that they have somewhere to start in negotiations with the insurance companies (and Medi[Caid/Care]).

Given a choice between "patient goes bankrupt and pays nothing" and "we might be able to recoup some of this", some medical agencies will work with you so it's not a complete write-off for them.

Comment PS4 Pro timing (Score 1) 207

On the one hand, great for streaming pickup.... But I've gotta believe that this decision still won't ever be hailed as a good idea -- failing to include a 4kUHD player in it (presumably waiting until the PS5 for that).

People are picking up 4K TV's. Early adopters are picking up 4K TV's. Some early adopters don't live in areas where massive bandwidth is available (or cheap) for streaming said video services.

These people who don't already have an XBox One are not likely to go out and pick one up *just* for the drive; they'll probably get a standalone player instead unless they were close to getting a Xbone anyway. But they're not likely to think too highly of Sony for leaving the drive out.

Comment Re:So a guy that runs a ride sharing company. (Score 2) 274

... now here in SF where parking is $280/mo in a private garage, it makes perfect sense. My lady friend owns a car but we only use it for trips out of town. If we're going somewhere to dinner or a show we always take an uber -- parking is insane and effectively impossible. All the street parking is taken up 100% of the time by residents who don't want to pay for private parking. As more people move in to cities, private car ownership can't go up. Private ride share makes perfect sense.

The problem here is San Francisco. Massive development, poor freeways, high-density urban living in glorified dorms, zero parking, and eco-nuts who are trying to make a point.

Perhaps Uber/Lyft makes great sense there, like taxis in New York and the massive, mass public transit investment. In most of the rest of the country, the economics don't make sense unless you're going to try to force people to use them by making parking very inconvenient, and/or taxing the hell out of everything involved with having a car. That might be one way to achieve it, but that's hardly a fair win.

Hell I recently *moved* to a downtown urban area and parking's a pain for visitors, but not insurmountable. And every condo or rental unit comes with at least one parking space for it (usually 1 per BR). Why? Because San Diego developers are realistic about car needs and aren't trying to force people into their preferred civic paradigm. Bay Area problems come from a manifest unwillingness to face inconvenient truths.

Comment Get out of your city more often (Score 3, Insightful) 274

The tech industry would be much less hilarious if so-called visionaries left the Bay Area or the East Coast Boston/Phil/NY/DC metropolitan areas more often.

If you get out into the other 98% of America, you'd realize that a) we like cars and b) we like ownership of property and things like cars.

Stop trying to solve problems that only exist in San Francisco. Thanks.

Comment Re:welcome to python (Score 0) 148

Python was initially released in January 1994, almost 23 years ago. Since then, some libraries have been deprecated, first producing warnings, and later being removed. That process gave users and developers time to update the code without completely breaking following an upgrade. Backward compatibility was reasonably well maintained until 3.0, which was released in parallel with 2.6. Python 2 is still maintained while developers port code to Python 3.

That's a big contrast from Swift, which was initially released almost exactly 2 years ago, and made significant backward-incompatible changes without an interim version that retained compatibility. Python's not perfectly backward compatible, but it's a whole lot better than this.

You sound like a Fedora admin.

Comment Re:Don't you people have better things to do? (Score 1) 81

Aren't there better things to do than play with a 30+ year old computer? Don't you dorks have better things to do with your time? There is no practical use for the Apple II in the modern world, nor has there been for at least two decades. You can get a newer computer if you just leave your parents' basement.

Yes, rather than bringing a little bit of extra polish to a piece of hardware/software that's simple and elegant, and does everything that it needs to, he could be spending that time completely ripping out tech in the most obnoxious way, like developing systemd.

Comment Re:piracy? (Score 1) 88

Actually, there are weapons on the ISS too, if inadvertently.

The Soyuz capsule has a 9mm on-board for use in self defense if it lands in the middle of, say, a lake surrounded by somewhere with wild animals.

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