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Comment Re:This is it. (Score 1) 738

I disagree with the court's decision, and I am completely for Net Nuetrality. Carriers should be just that, carriers, but that doesn't mean we would be able to carry on with limitless internet forever. The internet doesn't scale that way, and at this point is a hodge podge of random servers thousands of miles away from eachother. It costs money to ferry our data around, and as much as I love the way the internet is priced right now, it simply can't last.

So yeah, charging per gig or some other metered service is about the bottom line, but it's also about keeping the companies themselves alive. I don't want tiered service that favors one site or subset of sites over another (past infrastructure issues), but I can completely understand why a company might charge you extra for using their phone networks past the agreed upon limit, which is what this article is about.

Comment "Heavy Users"? (Score 2, Informative) 738

What the fuck does "heavy user" mean? Turns out the article mentions it.

He specified and said that the company would throttle the ones using smartphones past their bandwidth limit. Yeah, that's why I don't use a smartphone for that shit. It's spelled out in the contract for a reason. Turns out he's not making some ridiculous claim or stating that the company'll start throttling home based networks.

Crazy that.

Comment Re:You forgot the "so what". (Score 2, Insightful) 80

The smaller the transistors, the more that can be packed into a smaller area. Basically, this will allow you to have smaller chips that will have denser memory capacities. The benefits come into things like phones, tablet PC's, netbooks, cameras, cars, computers, etc. Anything that uses or can use digital memory will benefit from smaller components.

It'll also decrease the price for components out now, and that's always nice.

I just wonder what'll happen when we hit the quantum wall -- the point at which quantum effects become apparent and electronics behave erratically.

Comment Re:Keep in mind... (Score 3, Interesting) 241

The problem with bombs that have laying about for decades is that they decompose and lose some reactivity. They still pose a danger due to the conventional explosives they contain and the radioactive material, but past their shelf life they will not result in a catastrophic explosion and will release their contents relatively slowly.

What would be interesting to see is if the old bombs that have been left around have maintained the perfect symmetry required to properly compress the plutonium and ignite the nuclear fire; otherwise the ensuing explosion will be weak compared to the optimum yield, if it can occur at all. If critical mass is not met, an explosion will not occur on the scales liked to a proper nuclear blast. An explosion will still occur, maybe, but it will be trivial in terms of the actual damage done by air pressure versus radioactive contamination from the remaining fuel.

Comment Re:Interesting Idea (Score 1) 301

I'm of the mind that the AI has a smaller rule base since it doesn't have my experience. For the cassowary example, I don't think weighing 200 lbs necessarily precludes the ability for flight, but that's only because I have observed larger and heavier entities fly. If, like the AI, I was basing it on probability, then no, the damn thing can't fly because most birds I've seen don't weight that much and it's hard to envision an animal with the much heft to fly. Or, rather, I wouldn't expect it to fly, and say that it probably can't fly, based on just looking at a picture.

I agree that it needs to be able to learn based on observation or have an explicit code (I prefer it to be based on observation), but that's the point of the probabilistic method; it sets up a system in which the AI can roughly guess, based on shape and size, if something can fly, or swim, or any other thing. That is essential, because we do it as well. Then when something unexpected like a manatee comes around, we have to figure it out because its outward appearance does not correspond directly to what it can actually do.

The Turing Test's criterion is to creating a conversation in which a person cannot reliably say whether or not the entity they are speaking with is a man or machine. In this case, asking a person that does not have experience with the concept of bouyancy would most likely not believe that a 50,000 ton vessel could float. They simply do not have the data necessary to make an accurate judgement. We do not intuitively know how bouyancy works until it's been explained to us. Of course distribution of weight makes sense! But if you have not been taught that, you don't know why a ship floats, only that it does, and only if you've seen it. Realistically, I'd expect a person to ask me how a ship floats if they don't know. If Church were to undergo the Turing Test and ask or say it thought the ship couldn't because it was so heavy, that'd be in line with my expectation of a human response.

Comment Re:Interesting Idea (Score 5, Insightful) 301

The first time I saw an airplane, I didn't think the damn thing could fly. I mean, hell, look at it! It's huge! By the same token, how can a ship float? Before I took some basic physics, it was impossible in my mind, yet it occurred. An AI doesn't mean it comes equipped with the sum of human knowledge; it means it simulates the human mind. If I learned that a bird was over 200 lbs before seeing the bird, I'd honestly expect that fat son of a bitch to fall right out of the sky.

If you were unfamiliar with the concept of ships or planes, and someone told you that a 50,000 ton vessel could float, would you really believe that without seeing it? Or that a 150 ton contraption could fly?

Humans have a problem dealing with that. Heavy things fall. Heavy things sink. To ask an AI modeled after a human mind to intuitively understand the intricacies of bouyancy is asking too much.

Comment Re:Doesn't change much (Score 1) 586

It does mean a lot in nueroscience, true, but when it comes to courtrooms, I don't think it'll change much.

The precedent is pretty bitchin', seeing as they altered the brain with magnets, but realistically? I don't think it changed anyones moral scale (what they view as immoral vs moral) rather than gave them tunnel vision (only seeing the result rather than the cause).

Comment Doesn't change much (Score 2, Informative) 586

A small change in moral response, and even then, it isn't as if they turned off the moral center. Looks like they just caused the subjects to focus on the effect of the action than the reasons behind it. It's almost like they muffled some of the higher reasoning functions behind morality and changed the focus from "The person's action resulted in [x], though he didn't mean it to" to "The person's action resulted in [x]".

They didn't kill morality; they hastened the response to a morally vague event. Black and white, no grey.

Comment Re:Not so terrible (Score 1) 367

From Section 18:

"The President--

(2) may declare a cybersecurity emergency and order the limitation or shutdown of Internet traffic to and from any compromised Federal Government or United States critical infrastructure information system or network;"

and from Section 23:

"(3) FEDERAL GOVERNMENT AND UNITED STATES CRITICAL INFRASTRUCTURE INFORMATION SYSTEMS AND NETWORKS- The term `Federal Government and United States critical infrastructure information systems and networks' includes--

(A) Federal Government information systems and networks; and

(B) State, local, and nongovernmental information systems and networks in the United States designated by the President as critical infrastructure information systems and networks."

I take those as saying that internet back bones are considered critical infrastructure information systems, and, as such, are under the scope of this act. That's bad.

Worse, though, is that the President can designate what is and isn't "critical". Leaves far too much room for abuse.

Comment Slower (Score 1) 801

While this may cause cautious drivers to drive slower, it doesn't entirely inhibit reckless drivers from behaving dangerously. Granted, though, that reducing vehicle fatalities is an admirable goal, I dislike this method. Causing my line of sight to be cut off will piss me off, all the more so when I get stuck behind a driver than drives too slowly for the conditions, which is frustrating enough without cars that a pedestrian may walk out from unexpectedly. Any town with a tunnel will notice, though, that drivers instinctively slow down when entering a constricted space, to my chagrin. If you can drive at 75 + on the bridge, why can't you with a roof over your head? The walls aren't any closer to the road, and the speed limit hasn't changed.

Comment Re:Better than the alternative? (Score 1) 367

Most cases probably won't shut the entire American back bone down, as it would be catastrophic. Rather, he can probably choose certain servers/networks to kill in order to isolate a threat, rather than completely wreck communication and the economy. Ideally, the attack would come from outside the US so we could clamp it at the coasts and maintain, at least, an American intranet. This, of course, would be a moot point if the attack came from a botnet like Storm.

Comment Re:Dear World (Score 2, Insightful) 324

Dear fellow US citizen, as an American citizen, Canada remains a sovereign nation, so unless you know something I don't they can, and should, tell the US and EU to fuck right off in the form of an aggressive counter offer. Canada owes us nothing, regardless of what benefits they glean from our existence. We secure the world markets for ourselves, not Canada. We trade with Canada for ourselves, not Canada. We want them to sign this treaty for us, not them, so they should tell us to go fuck ourselves. V/R, Another America

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