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Comment Re:Sterile and shattered. (Score 4, Interesting) 229

One thing you're forgetting is that these stars have very low gravity, so when they throw flares they get a lot further out into space than they do on the sun. Typically the incident radiation will be low for the reasons you described, but when a planet orbits through a flare it gets zapped really hard. Meanwhile, orbiting the sun, we are so unaffected by flares that when we saw one, we thought it was the Russians jamming our radar.

People who get excited about aliens living on planets orbiting dwarf stars are kidding themselves. These stars are a dime a dozen and make up more than 90% of all stars, their light is more strongly affected by planetary transits, and they tend not to gobble up their innermost planets when forming. It's no wonder we find exoplanets around them all the time. But there is nobody interesting living on any of them. You can really only trust type F and G stars with life. Larger stars explode so fast their planets haven't even had time to solidify, and smaller stars have to be hugged so closely that the planet is affected by the star's fickle weather patterns.

Comment Re:written in Go (Score 1) 53

Given Go is a mainstream language without anything unusual about it, and given that's pretty much well known, I'd say most programmers wouldn't consider it a barrier. The programmers that do? Probably the people who aren't going to contribute to an open source project in the first place.

Why do I say this? Well, because you either love programming or you don't. If you do, then yes, open source is interesting to you, and no, you're not going to be put off by having to use a language you're only 90% familiar with (because, like I said, for non-LISP/Prolog/etc programming languages, you're already 90% familiar with them), you'll consider that a feature, not a bug.

What might put a programmer off contributing to a project because of the language is if the language is unpleasant or a chore to use, not if the language is not something they've used before. But Go isn't that either.

I'm a developer too. I've been in this profession for nearly 25 years, and been programming since I was 10 years old. If something can be modified and the source is available, I tend to play with it, regardless of the language. I really suspect most of us are the same way. Those who aren't... well, do you think they're really interested in open source?

Comment Re:FINALLY! (Score 1) 246

Well that's a post-hoc justification, if AMD can't compete in a market they can:

a) Make a comeback
b) Exit that market
c) Fail as a company

If it's a market full of competition b) and c) aren't a big deal but if it's the last competitor and it'll become a monopoly it's a pretty big deal. You can still 'vote with your wallet.' but in a one-party state it's not worth much. A boxer on the ropes doesn't need a knock-out punch to know he's in trouble. It's obvious to everyone, including themselves. And AMD has been diversifying into other markets and dancing on the ropes for quite some time now. Consider these two scenarios:

AMD Intel
(Bulldozer) (Sandy Bridge)
*buy Intel, AMD exits high end market*
(no offer) (Ivy Bridge - near monopoly rent, little innovation)
*buy Intel, no real choice*
(no offer) (Broadwell - near monopoly rent, little innovation)
*buy Intel, no real choice*
(no offer) (Haswell - near monopoly rent, little innovation)
*buy Intel, no real choice*
(no offer) (Skylake - - near monopoly rent, little innovation)
*buy Intel, no real choice*
(no offer) (Kaby Lake - near monopoly rent, little innovation)
*buy Intel, no real choice*

AMD Intel
(Bulldozer) (Sandy Bridge)
*prop up AMD by buying inferior offer*
(poor offering) (better offering)
*prop up AMD by buying inferior offer*
(poor offering) (better offering)
*prop up AMD by buying inferior offer*
(poor offering) (better offering)
*prop up AMD by buying inferior offer*
(poor offering) (better offering)
*prop up AMD by buying inferior offer*
(poor offering) (better offering)
*prop up AMD by buying inferior offer*

Would we be better off in the long run? I'd argue that quite possibly both AMD and Intel customers would be better off in the long run by occasionally taking one for the team, even if AMD customers got the short end of the stick every time. Except we're not a team, so we all do what's best for us individually and lose as a team of consumers. This is not the Intel/Pentium IV situation, when you kick the big incumbent to innovate that's entirely different. Like you, I'm cautiously optimistic that this is AMD's Hail Mary save in the last moment. But it was far from given than this would be the outcome.

Comment Re:the laws may take 3-5 years to get rid of drive (Score 2) 106

Quite, the same thing happened when they started to introduce human driven motor vehicles in place of the horse powered vehicles in the late 19th Century. A few lawsuits later, and nobody wanted to drive cars any more because of the risk. That's why we're stuck with horse and buggies in 2017, and nobody has gasoline or electrically powered motor vehicles.

(The concept you're looking for is "Insurance".)

Comment Re:written in Go (Score 2) 53

I don't think real developers care. As long as it's not written in LISP or some other language that's radically different from normal paradigms, and as long as the development environment is just a matter of checking some options in their favorite IDE, most programmers will be entirely happy.

You grossly underestimate the ability of decent programmers to switch from language to language. What we care about is not whether a language is rarely used, but whether it can do what we need it to easily and quickly - and whether the libraries are easily googlelable of course.

Go is a mainstream language, if a little basic. It's fine. That won't be the problem.

Comment So essentially test rides with passengers (Score 4, Interesting) 106

All trips will include two Uber engineers in the front seats as safety drivers

Google has also done this several times as a PR stunt without the taxi fare, they let a legally blind man ride with them back in 2012. I would imagine the fare is pretty irrelevant anyway when you have an expensive test vehicle and two engineers to pay. So what's really new here that hasn't already been done 5 years ago? Is there any reason to believe that in 5 years it'll be any different? I understand it's difficult, but I'm getting tired of the hype that self-driving cars are right around the corner. Two safety drivers on every ride isn't exactly self-driving. Any bets on when you can actually get into the back of a self-driving car with no helpers, no license and have the car drive? I'm starting to guess 2030+ while like totally being just "a few years out" all the way...

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