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Comment Re:The signs are there (Score 3, Insightful) 76

There's no chance in hell that Turkey will be able to join the EU and the chance is decreasing rapidly.

Exactly. Turkey has been pushing to join the EU for decades now, and it has (of its own- or rather of Erdogan's- own volition) been moving further away from meeting the requirements to join.

Even a few years ago, before things got this bad, it was generally seen as clear that Erdogan was not interested in joining the EU- let alone meeting the conditions for membership- but only in exploiting it for political capital... particularly when they were rejected so he could blame them for anti-Muslim bias, say they had no intention of letting them in in the first place, and use it as an excuse to bolster his own autocratic regime.

It'll also be noted how Erdogan exploited the Syrian refugee crisis in an attempt to extort concessions from the EU by threatening non-cooperation and effectively swamping the EU with refugees coming via Turkey. With freedom of speech- let alone expression- being cracked down on to the current extent, with the state shamelessly exploiting its power to push its own message while persecuting and suppressing any opposition, Turkey has- like Russia- become a mockery of a democracy.

Erdogan got his way- regardless of whether the Turks themselves are decent people, this is not a country- in anything like its current state- it would be acceptable or remotely workable to have within the EU. But then, there was never a cat's chance in hell of this happening anyway (and now it's more like a snowman's chance).

If I'd thought there was *anything* like a realistic prospect of Erdogan's Turkey being allowed to join the EU, there's no way I'd have voted "Remain". (Spoiler; I voted "Remain".)

Of course, that didn't stop self-serving scum like Boris Johnson- the guy who shifted his allegiance to improve his own prospects of becoming Prime Minister- using this as a scaremongering tactic to promote the Leave case, and in an utterly shameless display of hypocrisy, once they'd won, saying they were going to help Turkey join the EU. What a piece of shit.

Comment Re:No way! (Score 1) 82

So you can't possibly imagine how a company can provide economic benefits (and others) beyond simply paying taxes either?

You seem to think the onus is on us to guess- and make- your point for you.

Yes, I suspected that's what you might have been getting at. I had also suspected you might do the usual low-taxation fans' trick of parlaying this into an excuse to argue against taxation in general, using the line that- rather than X having to pay their fair share of taxes, it would- of course- be far more reasonable for their competitors to pay less.

I've no interest in living in a country like the US, which- relative to the amount of wealth that exists there- still has (e.g.) relatively poor infrastructure and healthcare (#)- because everyone's racing to the bottom to avoid taxation to pay for the facilities they use.

(#) Horrendously overpriced and broken before, only partially fixed with a compromise system (Obamacare) that was closer to what the Republicans had originally proposed before *they* moved further to the right and smeared it as socialism, now in the process of being broken again. Couldn't give a toss, I don't give there, not my problem.

Comment Re: It has its uses (Score 1) 417

Java (like Flash) was always designed as a plug-in, running side by side with the browser, not an integrated part of the browser. T

Uh, what?

Just because Sun developed a Java plug-in doesn't mean that Sun's vision was ever that Java was primarily supposed to be used that way. Java has always meant to be used as a standalone programming language, and the percentage of Java development targeted at the plugin is absolutely tiny. Most of it is focused on back-end applications, websites, and the occasional desktop app.

I'm not sure where this "Java = applets" thing comes from, and it's especially hard to understand why software developers would think this given it's pretty hard to work in this industry for more than a few years without being given a Tomcat/etc application hosted in a JBoss environment to fix up.

Submission + - Wikipedia blocked in Turkey (

Ilgaz writes: The Turkey Blocks monitoring network has verified restrictions affecting the Wikipedia online encyclopaedia in Turkey. A block affecting all language editions of the website detected at 8:00AM local time Saturday 29 April. The loss of availability is consistent with internet filters used to censor content in the country.

Comment The Not-Yet-Ready For Prime Time Drivers (Score 1) 28

Breaker, breaker, that'd be a big no on ditching the steering wheels, back up drivers, and reporting fack-ups, good buddy, over.

Fact is, autonomous driving systems aren't yet up to snuff to go the full monty. Until they prove out, they need a human with some skin in the game, and who's aware s/he's playing. And the state can't be sure how close to the tipping point we are without reporting.

On the flip side, I agree that allowing higher gross vehicle weights should be allowed, the better to test freight hauling.

Comment The Law Looks At Effect, Not Intent (Score 1) 303

A few comments make the claim that this suit will get thrown out, based on the idea that 1) the Indian outsource firms just happen to have younger workers, and 2) that these workers just happen to be Indian nationals with a number of India-sourced ethnicities.

That would be an interesting dodge, except for one wee obstacle: US labor law doesn't believe in coincidences. Rather, it focuses on disparate impact, and the plaintiffs have that in spades.

Submission + - MIT creates 3D-printing robot that can construct a home off-grid in 14 hours (

Kristine Lofgren writes: Home building hasn't changed much over the years, but leave it to MIT to take things to the next level. A new technology built at MIT can construct a simple dome structure in 14 hours and it's powered by solar panels, so you can take it to remote areas. MIT's 3D-printing robot can construct the entire basic structure of a building and can be customized to fit the local terrain in ways that traditional methods can't do. It even has a built-in scoop so it can prepare the building site and gather its own construction materials.

Submission + - Elon Musk on why he doesn't like flying cars: 'That is not an anxiety-reducing' (

boley1 writes: Elon Musk on why he doesn't like flying cars: 'That is not an anxiety-reducing situation'.

According to Musk, the main challenges with flying cars are that they'll be noisy and generate lots of wind because of the downward force required to keep them in the air. Plus, there's an anxiety factor.

"Let's just say if something is flying over your head...that is not an anxiety-reducing situation," he said. "You don’t think to yourself 'Well, I feel better about today. You’re thinking'Is it going to come off and guillotine me as it comes flying past?'

Comment Re:Speaking of delays... (Score 1) 106

ULA's track record with the Atlas V: 100%

Yes, let's take one vehicle in its fifth generation (not counting subrevisions), and ignore its track record with all of its earlier versions that led up to this point and all of their failures, and all of Lockheed and Boeings' other launch vehicles over time, with all of their failures. Lets also ignore that they're going to have to switch engines soon, to an engine with zero track record.

Payloads typically launch on schedule or within a few weeks. .... Some payloads have been waiting literally years due to delays.

Let's totally ignore that Atlas V launches once per two months, while SpaceX launches once per month, and that almost all of the wait time was due to investigation backlog. When it comes to hitting launch windows, SpaceX has a higher average success rate than average than Atlas V

And lets entirely fail to mention the point that ULA charges nearly double what SpaceX does per kilogram. Or that SpaceX is doing everything while rapidly evolving its rocket, to the point that they've basically even switched propellants partway through (denisification radically changes their properties). And while at the same time running an aggressive recovery and refurbishment programme and developing a heavy lift vehicle, with a small fraction as much capital.

Comment Re:What governmen brought to the table (Score 1) 106

As if liquid boosters can't fail catastrophically? Check out SpaceX's last failure. Liquids are hardly immune to catastrophic failure.

And actually more to the point, you've got it backwards. The SRB failure on Challenger was slow, more like a blowtorch. The explosion was when it compromised the external tank (which, obviously, stored liquids).

Solid propellants aren't like explosives. More to the point, you have to keep them under pressure to get the sort of burn rate that is desired for a rocket.

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