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Comment Aaaghhh, my eyes! (Score 1) 66

The first WTF was the disclaimer itself, but OK, if you must. Buy then, not one but two sets of weasel words?!!

"Necessarily", "in most cases". Choose one and leave it at that.

I'm not necessarily an old pregnant black Kenyan woman most of the time.

In fact, today I'm a young, white, male, New Zealander.

Comment Cherry picked data is cherry picked (Score 1) 304

...nothing to see here.

PS, if you search for "three aquatic mammals" you don't get three typical aquatic mammals either. You get a picture of a single seal or something because the text doesn't come up so much.

Because people don't take pictures and label them "3 black teenagers", for regular social photos more like: "me and my friends". The people that label photos like "three blahblah teenagers" are stock photography companies or police.

Google gave you what you searched for, it didn't anticipate your context and doesn't have a human level understanding of what a human is, let alone a black teenager.

Treat Google as a simple text and you won't be disappointed. Everything beyond that is a bonus. Google does it better than most, but...

AI, machine learning... there's some smoke and mirrors, some very impressive and valuable niche and specific applications, but does Google have the cognitive ability to hold a human-equivalent realistic model of the world?... that's the AI holy grail, we're not there yet.

Comment Optimistically... (Score 1) 103

I don't know anything about this particular project, and yes I'd guess it's plausibly snakeoil. But...

Positive thoughts, critic and cynic acknowledged upfront. The cynic and critic will say you can see how bad Google translate is by translating and reverse translating.

So let's put voice recognition capability aside and ask what if this new gadget is exactly as good/bad as Google translate?

it will still save you your free hands and a lot of time from looking things up in a phrase book or one word at a time in a dictionary.

After living three years in Japan, I've become very good at communicating in very simple English and very simple Japanese. Google translate can give you workable results for bare and not unreasonably imperfect communication. Keep your sentences very short with self-contained context. Don't expect pronouns and plurals to translate.

. Develop the skill of talking simply, and with clear gestures. If you're lucky or determined you will find others with these same skills.

. Even current technology, well applied, could be a god send if your traveling well off the beaten track. Not to translate your life's work, but for a (newbie) stranger in a strange land.

my two yen.

Comment Re: universal translator (Score 1) 103

Oops, typos, formatting.

Wow. OK, I'll feed the troll.

Firstly this person is probably your customer, or your customer's customer. So they pay your salary.

Next, are you sure they live in your country? On holiday? Visiting?

Next, do they speak only in their foreign language all day, every day? Are you sure? Do you suggest everyone becomes fluent in a language before they visit the country?

For some languages,with dedicated effort, even getting close to high-school level language will take several years on average. And guess what? The best way to learn a foreign language is to live in a foreign country.

Are you so sure you'd be happy to communicate at the level of a one year old to your family, friends, co-workers if you were in their position?

Source: I'm an English Teacher and part-time Japanese student in Japan. Please feel free to give specific examples of who does you such great injustices and I'll be happy to debunk them.

Comment Re: universal translator (Score 1) 103

Wow. OK, I'll feed the troll. Firstly this person is probably your customer, or your customer's customer. So they pay your salary. Next, are you sure they live in your country? On holiday? Visiting? Next, do they speak only in their foreign language all day, every day? Are you sure? Do you suggest everyone becomes fluent in a language before they visit the country. For some languages,with dedicated effort, even getting close to high-school level language will take several years on average. And guess what? The best way to learn a foreign language is to live in a foreign country? Are you so sure you'd be happy to communicate at the level of a one year old to your family, friends, co-workers if you were in their position. Source: I'm an English Teacher and part-time Japanese student in Japan. Please feel free to give specific examples of who does you such great injustices and I'll be happy to debunk them.

Comment Can't parse article text (Score 1) 105

Does this sentence make sense?

From both the article and the summary...

"On April 29, another 180 filed a separate lawsuit making the same claim: that Google's Apps for Education, which provided them with official university email accounts to use for school and personal communication, allowed Google until April 2014 to scan their emails without their consent for advertising purposes."

I get to "until April 2014", and my brain won't parse it. What was/wasn't promised before April 2014 and what was/wasn't delivered? Was the situation before April 2014 undesirable? Was the situation after April 2014 undesirable? Maybe it's just me, but the wording seems really unclear.

Comment Re:Argh (Score 1) 70

holds 9 degrees in programming and web design.

The "9 degrees" in the summary seems to be sourced from his linked in page:

---
Daytona State College
AS, Computer Programming and Analysis - Software Engineering, Internet Services Technology

2006 – 2011

9 Computer & Internet Degrees/Certificates With Honors
---

http://www.linkedin.com/in/wshawnwilkerson

... which is marginally more precise than the summary: 9 pieces of paper from a University. Not all are degrees.

Comment Guess free minesweeper (Score 3, Interesting) 279

I found this for android: "Guess-free minesweeper"

It has an ad-supported free version and a cheap paid version, $1 - $2 I think . It's like the puzzle game that comes free in Windows but less frustrating... you never get to an unsolvable point.

It still requires enough focus that it'll close your brain off from your serious work, and on the "expert" setting you'll find that you're better challenged than the old windows one... you keep searching (rather than guessing) for a solution because you know there is one.

I think someone's made something similar for windows too as freeware. Anyhow, it's good... but surprisingly addictive. I guess that's different problem though :)

Comment From the IT department's perspective (Score 1) 475

Talk to your IT department, say "my computer runs slowly", and see what they say. I'm serious, keep it simple and to the point. Say what the problem is, not the solution.

They may well have more RAM around lying spare, 1GB is about the minimum for Windows XP SP3 for a comfortable experience without too many heavyweight apps running, 2GB for Vista. I haven't tried Windows 7 with less than 2GB, but it's touted as running faster than Vista in the interest of netbooks etc.

Use Window's performance mode instead of "let windows choose" (right click on my computer > properties > advanced settings). You may want to tick a few extra options if you notice fonts are too jagged or you want to view pictures as thumbnails in windows explorer, etc, etc. Use Smooth Screen Fonts and Turn On Drop Shadows are the only two I normally bother with

Setting your swap space to a constant size, about 1.5x your RAM, tends to make the system run slightly faster. ie. set the minimum the same number as the maximum instead of "let windows choose".

If your hard drive needs defragging, do it.

Without knowing what kind of company you're in, you may find your IT department don't support browsers other than their standard IE6 / IE7 / whatever. So the internal web applications and intranet might not behave quite as you expect.

(I've worked in various IT support roles for the last 5 years including a lot of desktop support)

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