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Comment Re:Paying customers and age appropriate roles (Score 1) 240

Is it possible to fix? Maybe. Won't be easy though. The key would be proving that age discrimination is actually harmful to the economic outcome for a film. Challenging case to make since they don't let a lot of people who aren't white and young (if women) into movies to test the theory.

I suspect it's also going to be a challenging case to make because it's wrong. They simply also make movies which appeal to that audience, which is not interested in big special effects and whatnot. Different audience, different budget, different casting. And different release strategy as well; many of those movies are direct-to-video.

Comment Re: Comment (Score 1) 240

Well, I'm definitely opposed to this law, but think about your example: regardless of whether you know Anthony Hopkins age or not (I certainly don't know it without looking it up), he is visually and obviously unsuited to that role.

Consider more a case of Emily Kinney, whose age was at one time a bit hard to look up. She was pretty convincingly portraying Beth Greene on The Walking Dead - a 16-17 year old character - while the actress was in her late 20's.

You have to think of cases where people CAN'T really tell that the person isn't suited for the role just by looking at them.

Comment Re:Yup (Score 1) 240

Exactly. Loser pays all system basically means you DO NOT sue a big company regardless of how solid you think your claim is. I don't care if Microsoft wrote a program that caused my computer to intentionally come to life and shoot my dog, I wouldn't sue them for fear of maybe just POSSIBLY losing, which would mean I'm on the hook for their legal fees and I'm basically screwed for life.

Now, loser pays some capped portion of the opponent's legal fees and I could get behind that.

Comment Re:Yup (Score 1) 240

The Supreme Court hasn't seem to have made any rulings lately that I'd say are too far off-base, and their title *SUPREME* court basically means that they're the ones tasked with interpreting what the constitution means. You might as well accuse Hermin Melville of not knowing the ending of Moby Dick.

Of course I'm guessing your post is just another one of those "government is bad, mmmkay" type posts where everyone is always doing everything wrong despite never including any actual examples. It's always easier to bring generic discontent than specific talking points.

Comment Re:Too much money... (Score 1) 128

Uber is trying desperately to use up all that money they were given based on their (relatively simple) app. An app that they can't even make profitable. Apparently they lost around $1.2B in the first half of the year.

If they don't use it up, there's a risk they might eventually be asked to give it back.

Comment Re:Scale and power vs weight (Score 1) 128

Are you seriously arguing that because we've done it with an RC airplane that it is a trivial exercise to scale up to the size where it can plausibly carry humans safely? Yeah it doesn't work like. The energy costs to get aloft do not scale linearly with size. The bigger the vehicle + cargo the more fuel you need to lift PLUS you need more fuel to lift the extra fuel. This places upper limits on what can practically get aloft and how long you can stay there.

Several outfits have now demonstrated an electric multicopter large enough to carry a human for twenty minutes.

Plus even if you deal with the technical problems getting it to be economically viable is a MUCH harder problem. Helicopters have been a thing for a long time but they remain hugely expensive and problematic for use by the General Public.

It doesn't have to be affordable to every tom, dick and asshole. It doesn't have to be viable everywhere in the country. It only has to be viable in a large enough market to afford a few such aircraft. Also, helicopter air taxi services are a thing. People with more money than you or I regularly use them.

Comment Re:The poor economics of flying cars (Score 1) 128

1) Physics. The energy requirements to get something the weight of a human aloft are considerable. The fuel costs alone would make it economically prohibitive.

Show your math. I'm sure someone would be willing to pay at least that part.

A VTOL aircraft is necessarily going to be more expensive than a standard automobile because it is more complicated and thus more expensive. Even the simplest imaginable version would be far more expensive than what anyone but the super wealthy could afford.

They don't actually make any sense unless they are autonomous, because you're just having to pay the fuel penalty for the pilot — who can reasonably be replaced by a computer the size of your testicle.

None of the infrastructure for any plausible flying vehicle has been built excepting for airports.

Well, that is most of the required infrastructure. You can use their radio navigation beacons.

The cost to change this would be astronomical. Can you imagine trying to land in the parking lot of your local Walmart without the prop wash endangering everyone around you?

We're talking about a lightweight vehicle by definition. It won't take much of a rooftop pad for it to land on.

A much bigger problem is that you really need to not have a pilot, and there's no FAA framework whatsoever that would permit transporting passengers by drone.

Comment Re:VTOL planes a/k/a Widowmakers (Score 1) 128

There's a reason that both the Harrier and Osprey are called the Widowmaker.

I've heard that about the Osprey, but not the Harrier.

I doubt a commercial VTOL Uber plane will be a reality in my lifetime due to liability concerns.

Why not? People can use helicopters in cities, and they're dangerous as heck.

Comment Re:Hollywood discriminates on age, race, gender... (Score 3, Insightful) 240

It seems unlikely to me that Hollywood has an age discrimination issue.

Oh they certainly do have an age discrimination issue, particularly for female actresses.

Society has an age discrimination issue. Most of us, even women, would rather look at a fresh-faced young girl than at a woman with lines on her face. We'd rather look at perky boobs than saggy ones. Is it even possible to fix the problem of age bias in Hollywood, and if so, would that actually help address the problem of age discrimination in society? Or would there just be a lot of bitching about how feminist laws are compromising entertainment, ala Ghostbusters? (I don't have an opinion on that movie, which I haven't seen; I'm only characterizing the complaints.)

If an actor doesn't look the age for a part, they're not going to get the role.

That might have some credibility if they didn't also hire actresses who do not look the role at all. See Emma Stone in Aloha. See whitewashing. Same thing happens with them hiring actresses who are FAR too young for the role they are playing.

Yeah, I thought that was a bullshit argument, too. The truth is that they're going to hire the prettiest, most popular actress to play the role, and part of that means hiring the youngest one that can more or less carry it off because that's what puts asses in seats. I shouldn't have to be the one to tell you this, either. The degree to which youth equals beauty has been explored nigh unto death by everyone and their mom, especially as she ages.

Submission + - SpaceX Test Fires First Raptor Engine (techcrunch.com)

Thelasko writes: Elon Musk is preparing to unveil his plans to colonize Mars at IAC tomorrow. As a tease to his lecture, he has released some details about the Raptor engine on Twitter, including pictures.

Mr. Musk states that, "Production Raptor coal is specific impulse of 382 seconds and thrust of 3 MN (~310 metric tons) at 300 bar." He goes on to note that the specific impulse spec is at Mars ambient pressure.

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