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Comment Actual discovery: Mass of one such galaxy (Score 4, Informative) 105

RTFA (and Wikipedia) reveals that the discovery of the galaxies is actually one year old.
What was discovered is that the mass of the brighest one found (1% light of milky way) is the same as the milky way (even if the nature summary talks about weight, tststs). The way they measured it is interesting:

The more massive a galaxy is, the faster its stars move relative to one another. These motions broaden the spectral line through Doppler shifts, [...]. By combining six nights of data, the astronomers found that the stars’ typical movements relative to one another clocked in at 47 kilometres per second.

What I would be interested in is how one is sure that one didn't simply misjudged the distance of the galaxy. If it was 10 times as far away as thought, it would also appear only 1% as bright as expected.

Comment Re:Maybe the driver believed it was enabled? (Score 2) 166

This can be fully in line with the driver thinking the autopilot being on-line. Potentially the driver was trained by the system over time that he just has to shortly move the steering wheel in answer to a "hands on wheel!" requests by the system to be allowed to take his hands off again for one/some minutes. Only this time he did it too late so the system did not re-engage.

This is the problem of allowing long stretches of hands-off with only short stretches of hands-on because one originally promised "completely hands-off" to the customers.

Comment History-altering nuclear first-strike capability (Score 5, Insightful) 256

I really like articles which make large claims (here "a potentially history-altering nuclear first-strike capability") without spending the minimum of thought on them.
A first strike capability encompasses disabling the second strike capability of the opponent. I would be interested to learn how a rather large and slow plane would be able to find all the space-radars switched off so no one noticed the fleet of planes flying two hours through outer space, the early warning system not detecting re-entry of the warheads, and all the nuclear subs in the ports.
Very obviously the author of the article is privy to some information not about space planes but mind-altering capabilities of the Russians. I propose he gets a visits from the nice guys at CIA.

Comment Re: Google vs Tesla approaches to self driving car (Score 2) 485

I am a bit surprised about the belief that AIs (or machine learning) will solve all problems given enough data.
What do you think a neural net would have learned to do if trained to use VW's "AdBlue" as efficiently as possible but still to pass the NHTSA conformance test?
Who would you blame then? After all the constraints look reasonable. Would you want to be the engineer sued because he did not predict the neural net might learn something illegal?

Plus, there is obviously a problem with the way Tesla gathers its training data. If Elon Musk promotes a dashcam video taken by the killed driver earlier where the driver admits insufficient attention to the road (the cutting-in vehicle was in front of the driver and clearly visible), people might well take this as encouragement to not pay attention.

Comment Re:This topic again... (Score 3, Insightful) 201

Plus, what I am missing is a comparison with the ratio in the overall populace. I.e. if four times as many arabian/muslim people were studing STEMM (last "M" for medicine) than Islamic Studies, then actually people studying Islam would be twice as likely to become terrorist.

It is OK if the Tony Blair Faith Foundation wants to defend faith. But they should at least include basic statistical facts before writing articles.

Comment Re:I have seen one of these in action (Score 1) 54

I have seen one of these in action. I typed into the search bar in FF and it defaulted to Yahoo instead of Google.

Changing the default search provider happens quite often and does not need what this article describes i.e. one plugin using facilities of another. It is also easily correctable by *gasp* clicking on the looking glass icon next to the search bar and choosing your old search provider.

Please return your nerd card per express e-mail.

Comment Re:Good read (Score 1) 618

Actually the open discussion/review page is an even better read as it presents counter and counter-counter arguments. For example several Dutch and English scientist consider the predictions of the paper not impossible but on the upper tail of the probability curve (http://www.atmos-chem-phys-discuss.net/15/C6867/2015/acpd-15-C6867-2015-supplement.pdf)
Now, I am no climate scientist (nor do I have time to read all the references) so I cannot say who is more right but at least it seems to indicate that the large & quick effects predicted in the paper are probably not universally accepted as correct.

Submission + - Alpha Go Takes the Match 3-0 (i-programmer.info)

mikejuk writes: Google's AlphaGo has won the Deep Mind Challenge, by winning the third match in a row of five against the 18-time world champion Lee Se-dol. AlphaGo is now the number three Go player in the world and this is an event that will be remembered for a long time. Most AI experts thought that it would take decades to achieve but now we know that we have been on the right track since the 1980s or earlier. AlphaGo makes use of nothing dramatically new — it learned to play Go using a deep neural network and reinforcement learning, both developments on classical AI techniques.
We know now that we don't need any big new breakthroughs to get to true AI.
The results of the final two games are going to be interesting but as far as AI is concerned the match really is all over.

Comment Retaining Privacy? (Score 3, Interesting) 28

The "retaining privacy" part of the posting's title only refers to the ability to prevent some websites to be listed. Everything else is public. From the FAQ:

  • How much of my browsing data does Eyebrowse collect?

    Eyebrowse only collects data from the domains that you give it permission to collect. ...

  • Is the data I put on my Eyebrowse feed public?

    Yes. ....

  • Exactly what fields are collected with each visit?

    From every visit that is collected from Eyebrowse, we collect the time you entered the page and the time you leave the page. From the webpage, we store the url, [....] . Finally, the visit is associated with your Eyebrowse account. ...

They specifically warn that even an anonymous eyebrowse account can be potentially tracked back to a user by his browsing behaviour. It appears the title of the posting promises more than the mechanism keeps. No wonder for a webservice promising to get you in touch with like-minded (or -browsing) people.

Comment Re:And? (Score 1) 53

Decoupling the "droops" on the local power lines from local circuits drawing or providing excess current for signal lizes comes to mind immediately. It's easy to put in a large local capacitor to decouple many devices, but harder to find the board space to put a small, high frequency capable capacitor _right next to_ the power leads that connect each chip to the power bus or to the power plane.

To my knowledge it is even worse. You need to decouple the power grid of the individual parts of the IC against each other as well as the power supply (often also on chip for microcontrollers). From what I learned in a previous job most of the empty space(*) on current microcontroller dies is converted into capacitance to buffer the effects of power draw by switching transistors. And discussions sounded as if that was already becoming a limiting factor, so more capacitance (by attaching super capacitors on top of the die) could help.
But I am not an analog guy so I can't comment on whether the bad AC characteristics mentioned in another post will prevent such usage.

(*)= There is quite a bit of empty space on silicon dies due to the fact that a) the layout programs are not perfect (or rather the problem of routing the signal lines on the existing metal layers is not solvable without leaving some silicon empty) and b) design rules requiring certain areas to be empty (not sure they are allowed to be filled with capacitance then).

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