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Comment Re:Everyone knows (Score 2) 637

If it has to be something you can remember, then some examples are substitution cyphers (eg, rot13, but more complex substitutions work better), keyboard patterns, interleaving two words, spelling backwards, mixing two languages, &c. For example, a substitution cypher of the keyboard key up and to the left moves Password to ")qww294e". Tough choice for mobile, though. Interleave: mybank -> "m!y@b#a$n%k^". Now go make up your own.

Comment Re:Btrn in soace (Score 5, Interesting) 81

I spent a year or so working on fire detection for the Orion project, which was, at the time, sending folks to the moon. Fire in space is an incredibly arcane subject, with almost nothing known. On Earth, convection is everything, but in space, there is no gravity to drive convection. In other words, hot air doesn't rise. So flames do really weird, unexpected, unintuitive things.
Earth

Our Hidden Neanderthal DNA May Increase Risk of Allergies, Depression (sciencemag.org) 134

sciencehabit writes: Depressed? Your inner Neanderthal may be to blame. Modern humans met and mated with these archaic people in Europe or Asia about 50,000 years ago, and researchers have long suspected that genes picked up in these trysts might be shaping health and well-being today. Now, a study in the current issue of Science details their impact. It uses a powerful new method for scanning the electronic health records of 28,000 Americans to show that some Neanderthal gene variants today can raise the risk of depression, skin lesions, blood clots, and other disorders.
Businesses

Qualcomm Promises Gigabit LTE Speeds and New Chips to Power Smartwatches (google.com) 46

Qualcomm may have been losing steam (and jobs and sales), but it looks like the major telecommunications corporation is back in the lead when it comes to pushing out new LTE technologies. Qualcomm announced today the new Snapdragon X16 modem, which together with the WTR5975 transceiver, boasts Category 16 LTE download speeds of up to 1Gbps. Qualcomm also announced new chips that will power the next generation of wearables. Although you shouldn't hold your breath just yet, the implications could be huge!

Comment Re:Groundbreaking was awesome (Score 1) 105

That's... amazing. Color me incredibly jealous.

I'd guess they were throwing away nearly all that aperture -- to get all the scope's light through a 4mm exit pupil, you'd need close to 2000x magnification, which would make the nebula look like it was about 24 degrees across -- okay, that would fit perfectly into a normal field of view.

So, yeah. I hate you even more.

(Wonder what kind of 4mm lens could successfully catch all the light from a system that size? It's been a long, long time since I was immersed in the amateur-telescope-maker literature...)

The exit pupil of the eyepiece is probably more like 20 mm, so that the observers don't have to get their eye exactly in the right place. Wastes a lot of light. I was there last time they put an eye piece on Magellan. I remember being able to spot four moons by moving my eye around, but I no longer remember if it was Jupiter or Saturn.

Comment widen your horizon a bit (Score 1) 238

Just a suggestion that you might want to widen your horizon a bit. Most of what you've been doing is related to number theory. You might consider topology (mobius strips), geometry (compass and ruler), real numbers (show pi is irrational), platonic solids (wikipedia has some you can print, cut out, and fold), zeno's paradoxes (there a many), probability (die rolls and coin tosses), and almost any basic physics demonstration.

Comment Re:A secure backdooor? (Score 1) 179

Is he claiming he found a way to safely have backdoored communications?

Not sure what "safely backdoored" means. The system is spread out amongst many different countries in such a way that many different governments must agree to use the back door. If the USA, the Netherlands, and Russia can agree, for example, then it is probably criminal investigation and not spying going on. I reviewed many of the early drafts of this paper. It's pretty cool.

Just because something is criminal does not mean it should be criminal per our system of morals and ethics. Free speech in China or Saudi Arabia, for example.

As well, governments will cooperate on issues that may not be illegal but are inconvenient to them, for whatever reason.

You place too much confidence in government doing the right thing.

Actually I have absolute confidence that most governments will do the wrong thing. But if a system exists for which a diverse set of governments must agree, then doing anything, right or wrong, is more difficult. Not impossible, just difficult.

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