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Comment Re:Too good to be true. (Score 1) 94

This seems to be an incredible invention that will be a game changer. Passive cooling on the order of what this article talks about would seem to be too good to be true. If it is true these guys should be filthy rich soon.

Well the article certainly lacks critical sense:

And because it can be made cheaply at high volumes, it could be used to passively cool buildings and electronics such as solar cells, which work more efficiently at lower temperatures.

Cool solar cells.... by blocking the sunlight *facepalm*. Also I'm thinking how big a deal is the "not blocked by the atmosphere" really, I mean it's not like heat reflected of a little building significantly changes the ambient temperature. And finally production cost is one thing, but how it works in real dust-covered conditions and if it can survive being exposed to the weather all year long is another matter. I don't think it's quite as revolutionary as the article might suggest.

Comment Re:Not really a success for the AI (Score 1) 69

No, this is like a self-driving car that only works in GTA because it has a pipe into the hard data for locations of obstacles and other vehicles etc.

Wouldn't that still mean you've reduced an AI problem into a computer vision/identification problem? Like making a video recording of a chess board and saying if we could identify where the pieces are, we'd know what to play. I imagine the computer could look at the framebuffer and "derender" the picture back into game state a lot faster than a human, then feed that into the same algorithm. Would that really be meaningfully different?

Comment Re:They did it to themselves (Score 3, Informative) 188

When you make HUGE price tags to repair items, people are going to repair it themselves. I previously worked for Lenovo/Asus repair depot. To replace an LCD was over $300. Part on eBay is about$60 takes maybe 10 mins depending on the model. So when you flease the customer long enough, they attempt it themselves because the $300+tax or buy a new one for $400. Most think I'll give it a shot for $50.

I think the biggest issue for any repair shop is they can't deliver "I'll give it a shot" service. If it doesn't work, people aren't very likely to pay you $50 or even believe you really tried at all. If it turns out something else is broken too, they won't be very happy being stuck with a bill and a still broken machine. In fact you could end up in an argument about what was broke or if you broke it. If you do it yourself as a last-ditch attempt before throwing it in the trash you got nothing to lose, but deliver it to a repair shop and the customer will never accept that. They want a quote and a repaired machine for that price and you're burdened with the risk of delivering that. If those parts on eBay turns out to be faulty or shoddy knock-offs that don't quite work right or have quality issues that could become your problem too. Also if bad shit happens shortly after it comes from your shop they'll try to blame it on your repair, whether it's actually correct or not.

All of this starts amounting to quite a bit of overhead, if someone comes in with a machine you probably can't make an off the cuff estimate. First you have to figure out roughly what's wrong, what parts costs, the time you'll spend and the risk you're taking then give a quote based on that. And very often the customer will say it's not worth it and go buy a new machine and that time is lost. And then you'll have customers who want time estimates or worse yet guarantees and you have supply chain issues you'll spend time dealing with customer complains and they might haggle or cancel their business and you might get stuck with the bill. And you will have all the ordinary business overhead of having a shop, maintaining an inventory and billing system, taxes etc. and people that don't ever come to collect or pay. And if you're shipping you will spent time wrapping and unwrapping, collecting and delivering, dealing with transport damage etc.

I have some friends that are in the construction industry, they say pretty much the same. If you take away all the overhead, preparation and cleanup and just look at the time the handyman actually does this craft the hourly rate looks bizarre. But after dealing with "everything else" it's not like they walk away with that much per hour worked. It's the cost of doing it as a business, if they were just working on their own house they could do it way, way cheaper. It's simply a matter of trust and risk management, like I rented an apartment from an ex-classmate some years ago. Even though we weren't exactly friends he'd much rather rent to me than to some stranger, simply because he knew I'd be a no fuss tenant. The money is in easy business, dealing with complex and unique situations lie half-broken machines is often unreasonably time consuming and thus expensive. Getting a "known good" one off the assembly line often wins on simplicity.

Comment Re:Not a problem at all (Score 2) 832

There are dicks everywhere. People of all religions, ethnicities, colors, and even financial backgrounds don't like and/or trust other people who are not like them.

Well yes, but using extremes can often lead to a sort of moral relativism where everybody is equally bad even though one is a fringe movement and the other a mainstream sentiment. I'm sure there were a few black supremacists, but nothing like the KKK. I'm sure some Jews hated the Nazis, but nothing like the Holocaust. I don't know if it's been listed as a fallacy but the appeal to indifference certainly should be, like they were probably just as bad as us. No, they probably weren't.

Comment Re:Not really a success for the AI (Score 5, Insightful) 69

No, the purpose of AI should be that it can problem solve and adapt to a situation as well, or better than us. With an unfair reaction benefit it can actually problem solve worse, yet still win simply because it has an external advantage. That doesn't sound like a win for AI to me.

If a self-driving car can drive better than you because it's got 360 degree vision, millisecond reaction time and the capacity to focus on ten different factors at once is that "cheating"? I think that's a matter of perspective, limiting it to the wheel's turning rate and the pedals' actuation force sounds like unreasonably hampering the performance. Maybe that's not a "fair" fight, but I'd say we probably want the computer to play to its strengths and not mimic our weaknesses.

Comment Re:git was written when SHA-1 attacks were publish (Score 1) 169

If you think that SHA-3 somehow magically makes everything more secure for verifying data have not been modified in transit (e.g., installer gets corrupted while being downloaded) because you replaced all the SHA-2 hashes with SHA-3 hashes on the installer download page which is served over insecure HTTP, then I suspect you may not fully understand what threats you are trying to protect against.

The point is that if you're trying to use a hash instead of a checksum, it'll actually work as advertised. If you only care about random bit flips CRC32 will work very well and be much faster than MD5 or SHA-1. If you're doing major overkill you might not care that a hash doesn't function as a hash because you don't actually need a hash but that's no reason to use a bad hash. You should either use a good hash or use a lesser solution that doesn't pretend to make promises it can't hold.

Comment Re:And you should learn to read before replying. (Score 1) 136

The postal workers, who ship mail for a living, really should have advised him better.

That's like saying the people taking orders at McDonald's make food for a living. While there's of course exceptions I generally assume retail clerks don't have any real experience with any other part of the business than pointing out where things are, pushing the products and accessories the company wants to sell and working the cash register. The real skilled people are often working somewhere else, the front line staff is often temps and extras or quite happy with jobs where they don't have to think so hard. Not that I really blame them, but I'd rather set my expectations low and be positively surprised instead of the other way around.

Comment Re:I like my curved monitor (Score 1) 167

Distance doesn't matter. It's all down to how many degrees of your vision that the screen takes up.

That makes as much sense as saying it's all down to the area of the rectangle, the length doesn't matter. Field of vision (degrees) is a function of screen size and distance just like area is a function of length and width. Most of us sit way closer to the monitor than the TV, not just absolutely speaking but relative to the size. I just did a quick measurement and found I sit about 60cm away from a 28" monitor. That means I should sit 120cm from a 55" TV or 240cm away from a 110" TV for the same field of vision. In fact at the back wall of my living room at about 4m I'd need a 180" projector. So if curved only makes sense for big fields of vision, we need to sit way closer or buy way bigger TVs. So I think for typical living room distances the answer should be to give us reasonably priced 100"+ TVs first, then we can talk about curved.

Comment Re:Quantity vs Quality (Score 1) 143

Humans can be alert and productive for only so many hours a day, differs by person but it is definitely even less then 8 for most everyone. After that something that would take 1 hours in the morning will instead take 4 hours of overtime.

The question is what people could do and people would do. I've had six hour exams and they were killers, same if you watch top chess players after a typical match of ~5 hours so if you're giving it your everything then clearly you don't last eight hours. Do you think people would become super effective if they only worked six hours a day though? Do you think they'll just zone out and mentally recover for the rest of the day? Not just like one day, but every working day? I can't speak for everyone else but I get more done in eight hours than in six or ten hours than in eight. Maybe not quite as much per hour, but it's not like I'm drop dead exhausted when I come home from work. But that's only if I cut down on my leisure time accordingly, if I go from eight hours to six hours to four hours of sleep then yeah productivity goes down the toilet. But that's because I "force" the company to bear that cost, not because I couldn't do twelve hours a day of good work. I just wouldn't have any other life to speak of.

Comment Re:Talk about a subset of a subset (Score 1) 61

Not to mention that Valve knows well enough that Microsoft is working hard to throw as many obstacles between their feet to make Steam as unusable as possible in Windows to promote their own game store. Valve, of all companies on the planet, has a VERY good reason to push for full blown Linux support in gaming. And that's basically what Linux needs if it wants to take off.

Well Microsoft doesn't want to lose the Windows users to Linux and Valve doesn't want to lose the Windows gamers to the Microsoft store, so I'd say their Linux support is mixed. They want to keep Linux as a credible threat so Microsoft doesn't play dirty and that whole SteamOS and Steam Machines play was part of that, but they don't really want an all out war and neither would Microsoft. Because many gamers would stay on Windows and Valve would lose, but also many Windows users would migrate to Linux and Microsoft would lose. Okay so Microsoft might not be happy about Steam, glass half empty. But they're also 95% Windows users, glass half full.

Comment Re:Inadvertently attached to an unintended recieve (Score 1) 63

Well there are two quite different scenarios here, unnamed and named defendant. If it's an unnamed defendant like they're trying to subpoena the subscription information of the IP that uploaded this movie to P2P it's up to how much the third party wants to fight. If it's a named defendant like against Uber then Uber will have their own lawyers to fight that subpoena themselves, they're a party to the case and it's their data. The third party will usually get an order to preserve data and if that is the outcome to hand over the data, but they won't really get involved. Unless they explicitly want to bend over, like if your room mate invites the police in to look around with no warrant.

Comment Re:Thanks. Mr. Obvious (Score 1) 244

Yes, of course, everyone will have to pay for it. But it won't be via a high cost of purchase, it will rapidly be turned from auto-sales into auto-rentals or leases, where you won't be able to buy a car anymore, just hire it to go from a to b, or lease it for a period of time. As a bonus, the company will get to record and sell everything you "do" in the car, in order to optimize the ads being displayed to you.

Does anybody genuinely think that autonomous cars will come without a huge feedback loop back to the mothership? Reporting any situation the AI had a low confidence solution for, not just accidents but incidents that caused agitation like honking and near-accidents for review and all sorts of statistics on what it's been doing. And the other way will be full of driving AI updates, sensor processing updates, recalls, map updates, traffic alerts, weather warnings and so on. Actually regarding traffic I expect it'll be a two way system, the cars will report in on accident, road work, lane blockages, slow traffic and traffic jams. Maybe part of it will be opt-out but I imagine they'll bundle it such that for 99% of the population it's just their cell phone #2, they own it but the system knows where you are...

Comment Re:Practical? (Score 1) 139

I want crypto that has a good chance of outlasting the heat death of the universe

Why, are you Doctor Who and got the key to unraveling space and time or something? And even if someone should bother, do you really care if crypto-archaeologists find your tin foil hat conspiracies or pr0n collection (I was considering saying love letters and gf sex video, but it's /.) many thousand years from now when you and everyone who ever knew you is countless generations dead? I do care about 20 or 50 years from now but unless we make significant progress towards immortality in that time, I hardly care what happens after I become worm food.

Comment Re:The magic is dead. (Score 3, Interesting) 154

Computing is pretty much ubiquitous nowadays. When I first got into computing back in grade school around 1981-82, computers were just this incredibly awesome thing.

And no matter how fast technology goes there's a diminishing return, like the difference between CGA, EGA and VGA is never coming back no matter how much people talk about 4K, 10 bit, HDR, Rec. 2020 and so on. Doubling from 1MB to 2MB meant more than 1GB to 2GB. The last time I was genuinely floored by new hardware was in 2002 with Morrowind when I installed a new GPU with hardware T&L. Suddenly the grass looked like grass, the sea looked like sea, things started to have realistic textures and shadows and whatnot. Sure in sum we've come far since then, but never in huge leaps like that. That and modem -> DSL was also huge, but of course not as huge as getting Internet in the first place.

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