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Comment Re: Wind and Solar are Environmental Disasters (Score 1) 161

Actually, they regularly run into things like parked cars and windowless buildings. Did you have data to back up your claim, or were you just lying and hoping nobody would contradict you? The reason they hit the windows in houses, not the house, is that they hit the house, and you don't notice, but when they hit the window, you notice.

Comment Re:i/o ports and support (Score 1) 51

The Pie has FreeBSD and other Linux distro support and lots of i/O to hook up other peripherals.

And I was running Ubuntu 14.04 LTS on a Beagle Bone Black in April of '04 (although its userland was running on a somewhat back-versioned kernel for a couple months until the guy doing the kernel ports got the proper one fully ported).

The Black is not the first Beagle Bone version, either, and it was running Debian Linux from the first time I encountered it. It has lots of I/O hookup opportunities - including onboard USB, Ethernet, video, and lots of GPIOs that can be configured to provide several serial ports and a number of buses, in addition to lots of wiggle wires. And you can stack peripheral boards on it, as well.

Plug in a wall wart, USB hub, keyboard, mouse, monitor, (and, if 4 or 8 Gigabytes of file systems feels too cramped, a USB drive or mount a filesystem from a fileserver). Bingo: a full-blown desktop system with about the power of a cellphone and smaller than a pack of cigarettes (excluding all the stuff you plugged into it, of course).

Which is not to say it's the best choice. it's just one I happen to be familiar with. There are a number of single-board machines out there. Cellphone processor technology is too powerful, cheap, and available to NOT be plowshared.

Comment Re:Good idea, bad name (Score 1) 89

The name "autopilot" isn't confusing at all if you think of it as an analogue of the autopilot in a commercial airplane

Yeah, it's not confusing, all I have to do is think about it for a bit, then read the article you linked to, and everything will be clarified.

As a software developer, I can tell you that all my users are totally willing to put that kind of effort into understanding. They really try to understand I'm not being sarcastic here at all.

Comment Re:Good idea, bad name (Score 1) 89

Because if they come up with a better name, all problems are solved. They don't have to go around with complicated explanations telling people about their misconceptions. Or maybe you think it's easy to go around telling people they have misconceptions about what words mean?

Rename it, it's just easier.

Comment Re:Squirrels spread their attacks conveniently (Score 1) 117

I feel like you have a reasonable assessment of the security problems the country faces, but I think you underestimate the resources required to exploit them. It's probably takes more than five malware assisted spies to take down the infrastructure (say, the power grid). It takes a lot of training, expertise, and if you want to target SCADA systems, a lot of expensive equipment, and if you want to attack hardware that is properly air-gapped, then even more effort and a bit of luck, too. It's not a cheap operation to take down a big system (which is why no hacker has done it yet for the lulz although maybe they are trying?)

Comment Re:One obvious improvement (Score 1) 156

"so why does Nim need a feature only useful in video game inner loops"

yeah that is a bit of a straw man, I admit. We never established that operator overloading is a feature only useful in video game inner loops.

But I will say that I think it's generally only useful in a narrow and small subset of programming problems: those for which mathematical constructs already exist and for which math operators are meaningful. Most people don't write code using quaternions and matrices. General control logic and data flow algorithms are far far more common.

The worst kind of overloading in C++ is overloading for things like brackets and parenthesis and dereference. You're taking an operator which implicitly only has meaning within the language, since these are not mathematical operators, and allowing the meaning to be changed. I can buy that in narrow circumstances there is value in overloading the math operators, but the rest of them, forget it. Way more rope than necessary to hang yourself and anyone else who is unfortunate enough to read your code.

Comment Re:One obvious improvement (Score 1) 156

That's only because of some weird syntactical rules of the functional language you are using in your example.

So in:

'let a = 5 if a = 2 else a'

the variable 'a' from that point on in the scope will I guess refer to this *new* 'a' introduced by the let expression, instead of the 'a' that was passed in? That's freaking confusing.

And the 'a' in the right hand side of the let expression is the function parameter 'a', not the 'a' being introduced in the left hand side of the let expression?

Sorry that's just obtuse.

Comment Re:One obvious improvement (Score 1) 156

The ways that + can behave in C can be enumerated without knowing anything else about the program. But overloaded operators in C++ cannot be enumerated without knowing the types involved and doing an inspection on those types to see if the operator is overloaded.

It's a trade-off. Sure operator overloading allows some concise representations. But it's information hiding. That's not a trade-off that I think is wise to make. Other people obviously differ in their opinion.

Comment Re:Squirrels spread their attacks conveniently (Score 1) 117

ok, someone modded it down, but the push with "cyber security" and power is not a new thing. Remember when they wanted an 'internet kill switch?' It's not about Russians, or Chinese, or fat people in the basement, it's about people using excuses to increase their power. This theme has been going on for as long as the 'invade Iraq' thing was going on........many years before the invasion actually happened.

Comment Re:Broken Copyright (Score 1) 136

This is the system that Barak Hussain Obama defended and did not fix for the last 8 years. We will have to see what the next administration brings.

Likewise President Bush for eight years. Neither of them did anything about it because neither of them could. U.S. copyright policy is in the hands of the legislative branch. The US Patent and Trademark Office is part of the Department of Commerce, but the Copyright Office is part of the Library of Congress. Blame the Republican senators and the Democratic senators. Better yet, blame the incumbent publishers that provide campaign contributions, super PAC contributions, and in-kind donations of coverage on their affiliated TV news outlets.

Comment Re:Seriously wtf (Score 1) 136

Link's not an elf; he's a Hylian. The Zelda universe has its own counterpart to wood elves, called Kokiri. Link in Ocarina of Time was raised by Kokiri.

But at least CBS and Paramount have decided to embrace fan creativity by publishing guidelines for what constitutes an acceptable fan work. Nintendo doesn't at all.

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