Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?
Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 internet speed test! No Flash necessary and runs on all devices. ×

Comment Re:Hmm.... (Score 5, Interesting) 275

Tada: it's a micronation... in space!

Of course it's unrealistic armchair-libertarian drivel: the magnetosphere is a harsh mistress, after all.

What's interesting about this development is that it isn't a nearly-entirely American endeavour, which is often the case with such ambitions; Asgardia seems to be Russian and the AIRC supporting it is Viennese. I suspect we'll see a lot more anti-authoritarian behaviour from Europeans in the coming years as a) the EU weakens, b) the Internet transmits political memes that were previously comparatively contained by media limitations like talk radio and poor English literacy, and c) people already exposed to (b) come of age.

The much more feasible version of "let's get off the Earth so we can get away from our countries' laws" is called seasteading, and generally involves a platform in international waters. There's one clear non-Libertarian, non-American example of seasteading (Sealand, UK) which is fairly old and unusually successful by micronation standards. These days, however, the idea is generally associated with these guys, who have been funded by Peter Thiel. They, unquestionably, are primarily concerned with ways to dodge regulation. Without a realistic means of building such a gigantic physical presence, though, they certainly aren't going to be doing much of that; at best they'd end up creating their own passports that no one would accept.

Comment Re:Too bad it didn't have a RTG (Score 1) 70

To be fair, I was thinking of what it "could do" and not just the mission objectives. When I wrote it, I the Opportunity probe in mind, which far exceeded its mission objectives. On Mars, solar panels make pretty good sense. Would a RTG have made better sense here? As a poster below notes, they simply aren't considered in ESA missions.

Comment Re:Too bad it didn't have a RTG (Score 1) 70

I'm not automatically discounting what you say, but do you have a citation? I went looking (for a while, at that) for weights on a likely RTG vs. batteries and solar panels. The best I came up with was fuel mass for the Cassini mission - 4.8 kg producing 110 watts. http://www.world-nuclear.org/i... - (and Plutonium 238 needs the least amount of shielding for any RTG fuel). Can you provide information on the weight of the solar and battery components?

Comment I don't normally swear online (Score 3, Insightful) 396

But why in the FUCK are companies being granted effective monopolies on generic drugs?!?!

Nice to know our 'representatives' don't feel the need to hide it anymore. They've been in bed with the drug companies for a long time. But seriously, this takes it to the level of Muppets-style puppetry. No one believe that Kermit is a real frog; we all know that he's got an arm buried up his backside. Do you think Congress gets a bulk discount on shoulder length calving gloves and jugs of lube?

Comment Re:The name says it all... (Score 2) 162

It's not mispronounced; the first screenshot in this article shows that the menu item (third from the left) is in fact spelled "manbang" and pronounced (using X-SAMPA) as /man.baN/, equivalent to how a conservative English accent would say "man bang" (with open front unrounded A) Here's the Wikipedia article on Korean phonology if you want to analyse it yourself.

...Is it possible you're salty because someone forgot to invite you to participate in Manbang?

Comment Re:It's not sabotage (Score 4, Informative) 86

Were it that I had mod points! I think the title tells us more about the Ars writer than it does about anything else; your interpretation is much more consistent with the actual study's tone:

Abstract: Most theories of motivation have highlighted that human behavior is guided by the hedonic principle, according to which our choices of daily activities aim to minimize negative affect and maximize positive affect. However, it is not clear how to reconcile this idea with the fact that people routinely engage in unpleasant yet necessary activities. To address this issue, we monitored in real time the activities and moods of over 28,000 people across an average of 27 d using a multiplatform smartphone application. We found that people’s choices of activities followed a hedonic flexibility principle. Specifically, people were more likely to engage in mood-increasing activities (e.g., play sports) when they felt bad, and to engage in useful but mood-decreasing activities (e.g., housework) when they felt good. These findings clarify how hedonic considerations shape human behavior. They may explain how humans overcome the allure of short-term gains in happiness to maximize long-term welfare.

Slashdot Top Deals

e-credibility: the non-guaranteeable likelihood that the electronic data you're seeing is genuine rather than somebody's made-up crap. - Karl Lehenbauer