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Comment Come on (Score 1) 386

How is this considered the slightest bit complicated?

Cryo's already paid for. Mom doesn't share any expenses with Dad. If she's frozen, there's a tiny chance she'll wake up. If she's buried, there's no chance she'll wake up.

If she wakes up and life is too hard, she can still off herself. But no, let's not even give her the option?

It's a fucking no-brainer and the father should be shot. Well OK not shot, but sternly admonished for sure.

Comment Re: if by "plant" (Score 1) 215

I think you're confusing m/s and m/s^2. You use multiple stages to reach a given speed, and the units of speed are m/s. Acceleration increases your speed over time, and the units of acceleration are m/s^2. You can accelerate by 7400 m/s, which means you'll end up going 7400 m/s faster than before. If you accelerate at 7400 m/s^2, it means your speed is increasing by 7400 m/s every second, which after a minute would have you going 60*7400 m/s = 444000 m/s.

Comment Accountability Economy (Score 1) 213

OK this is how to save the world.

Punishment is just an expression of anger. It doesn't make the world better unless it fixes the underlying problem. We have "correctional institutions" but we don't correct. Prison is still just a place to dump someone as a form of punishment.

Autonomy and accountability go hand in hand. So when citizens in good standing reach legal age, start them out with the Basic Autonomy (TM) package. It gives you all the freedoms and powers you expect. You get it because society trusts you to keep your shit together, more or less.

We spend so much per prisoner that we certainly can afford to offer actual correctional support to those who can't manage this autonomy.

If you screw up in some way, you don't necessarily go to jail. You temporarily forfeit some measure of both autonomy *and* accountability. You lose a freedom but you also aren't expected to handle certain responsibilities. Like let's say you're caught DUI. You lose the freedom to drive, but you're provided whatever transportation you need to be productive. It's like what you'd do with your kid. Make sure the kid can get to school/work, but otherwise ground them.

If you're caught laundering money, you lose your business and license. Maybe there's some weird way to make this temporary, like if the government runs your business while your rights are suspended. The government also prohibits you from associating with certain people. But anyway, there's no need for jail time.

If you can't hold a job, or don't want to, you're basically treated the way we treat adolescents. It isn't a bad thing. It is what it is. You're fed, clothed, sheltered, free to work part time if you want, etc, but the state keeps a close eye on how you spend your time, just like parents would. It isn't fun but it isn't terrible either. You can get help to improve your ability or increase your drive to regain autonomy. Of course if circumstances beyond your control have stripped you of the ability to work, things go a bit differently.

If you kill someone deliberately, your access to people is heavily restricted. I guess this is a case where imprisonment is the only option. It's tough because when you imprison someone, they necessarily lose some powers they might have been able to handle just fine.

If you have power over other citizens, you have concomitant responsibility. For-profit prisons are de facto impossible because the whole point of the system is to balance power and accountability. As a result of that balance there is no profit to be made.

If you commit fraud, you owe the people you cheated. You lose most freedoms until you earn the money back because all of your wages are garnished. You lose the power to gain new property so the state assumes the responsibility.

Giant financial institutions are limited in their ability to grow by their ability to account for their power. "Too big to fail" doesn't happen because a bank is required to hold an untouchable cash reserve that's released if it ever fails, and this amount depends on how much damage the economy would suffer. We already require banks to keep a fractional reserve, but that fraction increases along with your impact on the market. There are other factors, such as how competent top executives are deemed to be. Can't find someone good to replace your top person? Then you need to release reserve into the market. Somehow. Not sure how.

If you take a risk so great that in failure you'd never be able to account for the loss, a portion of your gains are garnished such that in retrospect, the risk was manageable. You also temporarily lose the power to take certain risks.

I don't know what to do when economic growth in general is limited by a scarcity of accountability. Maybe nothing.

National security will upset the balance. Not sure how to manage that either.

Comment Re:What happens when they name the Jew? (Score 1) 98

Such an AI will be among many, each tuned to argue for someone's pet belief system. There probably will be complicated dynamics involving the popularities of various worldviews, retroactive evaluations of different "embryonic" AI configurations based on the belief systems they produce, trust in the intellectual honesty and/or ethical rectitude of different AI developers, greed and power mongering, whatever ethics might be inherent in human instinct, moral and ethical fashion, and the public majority who don't care to think much about it.

Comment Our Solar System Isn't Necessarily Special (Score 1) 88

We still have too little data to guess whether our planetary system is special. Transits and Doppler wobbles are being detected in only a small fraction of the stars we observe. One reason is time: it takes an a few orbits to establish a pattern. So it's only natural that most of the systems we've found have been compact. They're they low-hanging fruit. It will take a bit longer to get a good statistical understanding of the proportion of less compact systems.

Submission + - How music listening programs can be easily fooled (qmul.ac.uk)

An anonymous reader writes:

For well over two decades, researchers have sought to build music listening software that can address the deluge of music growing faster than our Spotify-spoilt appetites. ... One particular area of intense research has been devoted to getting these “computer ears” to recognise generic attributes of music: genres such as blues or disco, moods such as sad or happy, or rhythms like waltz or cha cha. ... So far, we see some systems achieve accuracies that equal that of humans. The appearance of this human-level performance, however, may instead be a classic sign of unintentional cues from the experimentalist — a danger in experimental design recognised for over a century.


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