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Submission + - Colin Pillinger dies 1

Smivs writes: The BBC report that planetary scientist Professor Colin Pillinger, best known for his involvement in Britain's Beagle 2 Mars mission, has died aged 70.
Prof Pillinger was the driving force behind the ultimately doomed Mars lander, and was awarded a CBE in 2003.
His spokesman said he suffered a brain haemorrhage at his home in Cambridge and later died in hospital.

Submission + - Most silent movies have now been lost 4

Smivs writes: Of the nearly 11,000 silent films made between 1912 and 1930, only 14% still exist in their original format, Library of Congress research has found.
  And 11% of those that survive only exist as foreign versions or on lower-quality formats, meaning an original 20th century art form has all but disappeared.
  Silent films were at their peak between in the early part of the century when — before network radio or television — going to the cinema was the most popular form of entertainment.
  Famous films now considered lost include Cleopatra from 1917, The Great Gatsby from 1926, Lon Chaney's London After Midnight from 1927, and The Patriot from 1928.
  Librarian of Congress James Billington says "The loss of American silent-era feature films constitutes an alarming and irretrievable loss to our nation's cultural record."

Comment Re:Autopilots (Score 2) 722

Well up to a point. The comparison is with 'normal' drivers, American drivers at that. As far as I know driver training in the US is fairly basic compared to many countries, and TFA doesn't actually mention 'professionally trained' drivers at all unlike the /. summary. I would contest that a 'real' advanced driver, say a UK police Class 1 driving certificate holder, will out-perform a robot any day, not because they are quicker to react but because the skills and experience they have gathered over years of dedicated training and practice would give them the ability to predict problems and prevent incidents, rather than relying on their robotically quick response times to cope with a developing problem the advanced human driver would have already avoided.

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The unfacts, did we have them, are too imprecisely few to warrant our certitude.