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Comment Re:Statistical inference (Score 1) 127

You might (stress might) be right about the fact that the overall mortality rate might not change much but that doesn't mean a specific cause can be ignored.

The question is how many people died because VW cheated. If the net result is 0, what more is there to say? In fact we don't know, because there has been no good-faith attempt (by either side) to make such a determination. VW obviously has no motivation to participate in such an effort, so it's disappointing that no one else seems to be interested either.

Comment Re:Who sells their old drives? (Score 1) 174

I usually get used drives at yard sales, either inside of a used PC or sometimes as an external. Every single time, there has been personal information included. Only once has any of their data been interesting, and it's never been the personal information in my case. They just had a cool mp3 collection.

Comment Re:Why? (Score 1) 174

In my experience, every single drive that I've seen reporting even a single bad sector will soon go pear-shaped and shouldn't be used.

Not that I want to go back to measuring disk size in tens of megabytes, but I do have a certain nostalgia for the days when hard errors would sometimes correct themselves and an unusable sector would become usable again.

Comment Re:And yet nobody died (Score 2) 127

TL;DR it's hard to put an exact figure on but it's high, in the millions.

No, FUD-spreading liar, it is in the thousands at worst. Further, it cannot be even that number, because the study was actually shit.

The study, published in the journal Environmental Research Letters on Thursday, concluded that most of the 59 premature deaths were caused by particulate pollution (87%) with the rest caused by ozone exposure (13%). Most of the deaths were estimated to have occurred on the east and west coasts of the US.

The number of deaths was reached by looking at the amount of extra pollution emitted between 2008 and 2015 by the VW cars fitted with the defeat devices.

But that is garbage, because the software also caused the vehicles to use less fuel, which means while they produced more NOx, they actually produced less PM2.5 particulates, which are the kind that cause cancer. These particulates are increased when modern diesel emissions systems are used. Gasoline cars put out just as much black carbon as diesels, and nearly all of it is PM2.5, so if those cars had not been purchased and gasoline cars had been purchased instead, a lot more harmful particulates would have been released.

At most, thousands more people died from NOx-related effects, but no one is even trying to tell us how many less people died from PM2.5 soot causing cancer, how much less unburned HC was released due to so much less HC being injected (a 20-25% fuel savings!) and from people buying diesels when they could be buying the competition — non-plug-in hybrids. Such vehicles get no better mileage than diesels, they emit more PM2.5 than diesels, and they have two whole power systems which raises the production energy cost. Battery electrolytes are still not recycled, they are incinerated or landfilled which costs more energy, so a diesel is still superior to a non-plug-in-hybrid.

TL;DR: You're full of shit.

Comment Re:Full refunds on all VW cars (Score 2) 127

Firstly, this is not about all VW cars, but only those fitted with one specific type of engine (EA189) and then only those sold in one specific country.

You are wrong on all points here. There are multiple engines involved, and German authorities say that VW cheated in Europe, too.

Plaintiffsâ(TM) lawyers brush aside the distinction being drawn by Volkswagen. âoeThe issue of whether or not it is a defeat device amounts to very little in a legal sense,â said Bozena Michalowska Howells, a partner at the London law firm Leigh Day.

âoeTheyâ(TM)re going to remove it and fix it, and for regulatory purposes, itâ(TM)s being deemed a defeat device,â she said.

So in fact, this is about a broad range of cars sold in multiple countries, and you have no idea what you are talking about. Why not step aside, and let the adults speak?

Comment Re:If no one goes to jail, it means nothing... (Score 1) 127

It's almost guaranteed that quite a lot of people are dead because of this fraud.

The last estimate I saw suggested some 40 people may have died because of the additional NOx pollution, although pollution doesn't work that way, and auto pollution double-extra doesn't work that way. Because the vehicles produced more NOx, they also consumed less fuel and they produced less soot, HC, and CO2. They went ahead and calculated the additional deaths from NOx, but they didn't subtract the reduced deaths from soot and HC, nor from the reduced impact on climate change.

Comment This discussion is stupid EVERY TIME. (Score 1) 300

I've said it before, and I'll say it again for your benefit now. The car is going to do its best to not break the law. Hitting a car that cut you off is not against the law; it's the fault of the driver who cut you off and hit the brakes, that's called a brake job. It's not going to come around a blind turn and hit something because it's going to slow down for the turn if some other vehicle hasn't just gone ahead and reported back that it's clear via V2V. It's not going to leave the lane because that would be a potential violation of the law. It's going to hit the brakes, and diminish the force of the impact. It's not going to choose to swerve around a bus and hit a bunch of nuns, but it's also not going to choose to hit the bus in the first place by driving like an asshole.

If anyone wants to bring up this point in the future, and I strongly suggest that you do not, please say something interesting or novel about the situation.

Peter Dizikes at MIT News is a staggering idiot if he thinks that the majority of people will not buy self-driving cars simply because they might kill you. People also get on airplanes and they can't even get into the cabin and fight with the pilot any more.

Comment Re: Unsurprising (Score 1) 417

You do realize humans are currently being outcompeted and replaced by machines in pretty much every occupation? That's pretty much the root reason for our economic and social problems.

First part yes, second part no. Greed is the... etc. We could say that greed is caused by insecurity caused by shitty parenting, though. So really, all our social problems are caused by shit parenting at all levels

Comment Re:easy one (Score 1) 417

And is "dogfighting" still a thing in the 21st century?

Missiles keep getting better, but ECM is also a thing. For much the same reason, we've been keeping pilots in planes. Squishy organic meat bags aren't vulnerable to the same things as electronics, although admittedly there is considerable overlap in the areas of ballistic projectiles and high explosives.

Comment Re:Not a real world test (Score 1) 417

To the best of my knowledge we do not presently nor are we likely to any time soon have an AI that we can or should trust to make judgements about what to shoot or when to shoot it.

That argument is ridiculous in every way because we do not have human pilots that we trust to make judgements about what to shoot or when to shoot it. They have to get permission before they engage an attacker, and they are given their ground targets before they even take off.

Comment Re:Why are we still using Human Pilots? (Score 1) 417

Because when we automate war and remove the risk of losses on our side, it becomes too easy to just throw more robots into a situation.

We are only robots or slaves to the elite who send us to war anyway, so no. That's not really a valid argument. The only reason we're not using robotic pilots right now is that they're not as reliable as humans. That's changing.

Comment Re:AIs don't have G-force limits (Score 1, Insightful) 417

The airframes can't take 8G either.

So they'll use the techniques BMW used to mass-produce the i3 to make carbon fiber drones that can take even more. Taking the pilot out of the equation saves volume that lets you make the craft smaller, and then you benefit from square-cube law instead of getting fucked by it.

Comment Re:"He took on the software in a simulator" (Score 3, Informative) 417

Translation: he took on the software in its version of reality, with it either being omniscient or having a perfect model of its sensors' deficiencies.

After boats (which got autopilots very early on) aircraft are literally the easiest vehicle piloting job for AI for a broad array of reasons. The sensor package is one of the most compelling; they really know where they are, and what they are doing. Some literally $1 accelerometers will tell you the vast majority of what you need to know to keep a plane in the air.

It should not shock anyone that an AI would be a better combat pilot than a human, especially when it comes to stuff like leading shots.

Tracking a target with a camera and making a visual estimation of its heading is not that hard any more, again, especially of aircraft which we've been spotting first with our eyes and then with software since they have existed. We have rather complex and expensive spying programs designed to tell us where military aircraft are and what they are doing. And aircraft don't go backwards, and they don't stop in mid-air, etc. What they are up to is a lot easier to estimate than other types of vehicle, again, besides boats.

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