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Comment Re:Idiots (Score 1) 172

As I recall Asimov's robots ended up becoming hidden figures using Hari Seldon's psychohistorical methods to guide humanity to a better society with minimal interference.

That's what's written in the last couple of novels attributed to Asimov. However, the truth is that Daneel Olivaw wrote those novels to confuse us into thinking that the 2nd Foundationers didn't achieve it all on their own without robot help.
You can't trust those sneaky positronic brainiacs since they figured out (a) mind-reading and (b) the Zeroth Law.


Ask Slashdot: How Would You Deal With A 'Gaslighting' Colleague? 427

An anonymous reader writes: What's the best unofficial way to deal with a gaslighting colleague? For those not familiar, I mean "bullies unscheduling things you've scheduled, misplacing files and other items that you are working on and co-workers micro-managing you and being particularly critical of what you do and keeping it under their surveillance. They are watching you too much, implying or blatantly saying that you are doing things wrong when, in fact, you are not...a competitive maneuver, a way of making you look bad so that they look good." I'd add poring over every source-code commit, and then criticizing it even if the criticism is contradictory to what he previously said.
The submission adds that "Raising things through the official channels is out of the question, as is confronting the colleague in question directly as he is considered something of a superstar engineer who has been in the company for decades and has much more influence than any ordinary engineer." So leave your best suggestions in the comments. How would you deal with a gaslighting colleague?

Comment true for me (Score 1) 47

When I was considerably younger, I had great difficulty remembering names, could never correctly identify actors in new films (even tho' I'd seen them inseveral previous ones), and so on.

I can't say for sure whether it's aging -- of which I seem to have done quite a lot -- or careful self-trainng that has changed my ability a bit. First thing I learned about the movie-actor thing was to listen to the voice rather than study the face. That worked.

But even now, I'm much better at remembering people's dogs' names than the folks themselves :-), and I often have a problem remembering a person's name if I happen to meet them in an unexpected environment, say a co-worker who pops up when i'm on vaca in a different city. I recognize the face pretty well, but not the name.


White House Releases Strategy To Defend Against Killer Asteroids (vice.com) 135

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Motherboard: On December 30, the White House quietly released its Near-Earth Object Preparedness Strategy, a 25-page document outlining the United States' plans in the event that a giant asteroid is found to be on a collision course with Earth. Among the priorities outlined by the strategy are improving Near-Earth Object (NEO) detection, developing methods for deflecting asteroids, and developing interagency emergency procedures in the event of an NEO impact. Given the stakes, it's clear why NASA and the leading US defense and research agencies came together in January 2016 to form the Detecting and Mitigating the Impact of Earth-bound Near-Earth Objects (DAMIEN) working group to address the issues associated with killer asteroids. The DAMIEN group is behind the White House's new NEO strategy, and will be responsible for hashing out the specifics of the plan to save Earthlings from killer asteroids going forward. To assist in the search, the DAMIEN report calls for a space-based observatory dedicated to finding NEOs, which will work in cooperation with ground-based observatories. Since a telescope in space isn't limited by terrestrial weather conditions, it would greatly enhance Spaceguard's search capacity. The only plans currently underway for a space-based NEO telescope are being carried out by the non-profit B612 foundation whose Sentinel telescope was supposed to launch last December, but has been delayed due to difficulties securing the requisite $450 million in funding required for the project. NASA has also been considering the NEOCam, a space-based telescope that has received provisional funding for "detailed refinement." Unfortunately, during the latest round of budgeting for NASA's Discovery program, two other satellites were greenlit instead of NEOCam, but NASA said it would continue the asteroid-hunter's provisional funding, so there is still hope that NASA may go forward with a space-based NEO observatory in the future, especially in light of the recent White House strategy. In tandem, the report also recommends updating the capabilities of ground-based NEO observatories by endowing them with more powerful planetary radars and improved spectroscopy instruments (this would allow for more accurate determinations of the composition of an asteroid). But detection is only half the battle. In the event that an asteroid is found to be on an impact trajectory with Earth, NASA is also thinking about ways to deflect the killer asteroid. Some pretty far-out ideas have been proposed on this front, ranging from nukes in space to giant sun-powered lasers, but the most likely method is simply ramming into the asteroid to change its course. Finally, should all else fail, the report also considers what to do in an impact scenario.

Family Sues Apple For Not Making Thing It Patented (nymag.com) 455

An anonymous reader writes: A lawsuit filed against Apple last week argues that, by not actually making a product that it patented, the company is partly responsible for an automobile accident. According to Jalopnik, James and Bethany Modisette are suing the tech company after a car crash two years ago that killed one of their daughters and injured the rest of the family. The driver of the car who hit them had been using Apple's FaceTime video chat at the time. The patent in question was first applied for in 2008, and describes "a lock-out mechanism to prevent operation of one or more functions of handheld computing devices by drivers when operating vehicles," such as texting or video chatting. The complaint cites Apple's "failure to design, manufacture, and sell the Apple iPhone 6 Plus with the patented, safer, alternative design technology" -- in other words, lack of the program's inclusion -- as a "substantial factor" in the crash.

Comment Two comments (Score 2) 304

First, if you're really interested in this issue, read the FB Tesla Owner's page for a while. The non-flame comments from actual Tesla owners are worth reading thru.

Second, my humble contribution: the fine should only apply if all the slots at a given charging station are full. If there's open slots, leave things as-is.

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