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Submission + - Indian Student Jailed for Cheating on Exams

HughPickens.com writes: BBC reports that Ruby Rai, a 17-year-old schoolgirl in India, has been thrown in jail after cheating on her exams. Ranked first in the Bihar state exams — Rai said in a video interview that her main subject political science was about cooking. After the video went viral, Rai was made to re-sit her exams, and was arrested after she failed and had her original results cancelled. Examiners who retested Rai told reporters they were "shocked" by her performance. When asked to write an essay about the Indian poet Tulsidas, she only wrote "Tulsidas ji pranam (Salutations to Tulsidas)". Meanwhile, arrest warrants have been issued for several other students who performed well in the exams, including Saurabh Shrestha who topped the science stream, but later could not say that H2O was water. Last March as many as 300 people were arrested for cheating in Bihar after the Hindustan Times published images of dozens of men climbing the walls of a test center to pass answers inside.

Submission + - Autonomous Cars Cannot Be Test-Driven Enough Miles to Demonstrate Their Safety

HughPickens.com writes: According to a new report from RAND, autonomous vehicles would have to be driven hundreds of millions of miles and, under some scenarios, hundreds of billions of miles to create enough data to clearly demonstrate their safety and under even the most-aggressive test driving assumptions, it would take existing fleets of autonomous vehicles tens and even hundreds of years to log sufficient miles to adequately assess their safety when compared to human-driven vehicles. “Our results show that developers of this technology and third-party testers cannot drive their way to safety,” says Nidhi Kalra. “It's going to be nearly impossible for autonomous vehicles to log enough test-driving miles on the road to statistically demonstrate their safety, when compared to the rate at which injuries and fatalities occur in human-controlled cars and trucks.”

The problem is that even though the total number of crashes, injuries and fatalities from human drivers is high, the rate of these failures is low in comparison with the number of miles that people drive. Americans drive nearly 3 trillion miles every year, according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics. In 2013, there were 2.3 million injuries reported, which is a failure rate of 77 injuries per 100 million miles driven. The related 32,719 fatalities correspond to a failure rate of about 1 fatality per 100 million miles driven. “The most autonomous miles any developer has logged are about 1.3 million, and that took several years. This is important data, but it does not come close to the level of driving that is needed to calculate safety rates,” says Susan M. Paddock. “Even if autonomous vehicle fleets are driven 10 million miles, one still would not be able to draw statistical conclusions about safety and reliability.”
Patents

Submission + - Texas judge tosses out patent claim against Linux (networkworld.com)

netbuzz writes: "A federal judge in Texas, presiding over a district notorious for favoring patent trolls, has summarily dismissed all claims relating to a case brought by Uniloc USA against Rackspace for allegedly infringing upon Linux patents. Red Hat defended Rackspace in the matter and issued a press release saying: “In dismissing the case, Chief Judge Leonard Davis found that Uniloc’s claim was unpatentable under Supreme Court case law that prohibits the patenting of mathematical algorithms. This is the first reported instance in which the Eastern District of Texas has granted an early motion to dismiss finding a patent invalid because it claimed unpatentable subject matter.”"
AT&T

Submission + - Proposal To Kill Wisconsin University Broadband (wistechnology.com)

twoallbeefpatties writes: via BoingBoing, a bill designed to give state universities more freedom gained an additional line at the 11th hour that would dismantle WiscNet, a nonprofit broadband system that serves schools and libraries in Wisconsin. The line could force the state to return stimulus funds that were planned to go to WiscNet's expansion, including money already spent. It's possible the line was the result of lobbying from AT&T, who would gain business by forcing more use of a more expensive private-public system.

Submission + - DC Comics Revamp Underway; New No. 1's (bleedingcool.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Bob Wayne, Senior Vice President of Sales at DC Comics, has written to comic book retailers today, outlining much of what Bleeding Cool has been telling you, as well as addressing all DC books going day-and-date-digital.

"Many of you have heard rumors that DC Comics has been working on a big publishing initiative for later this year. This is indeed an historic time for us as, come this September, we are relaunching the entire DC Universe line of comic books with all new first issues. 52 of them to be exact."

IOS

Submission + - Lodsys ignores Apple, sues iOS developer (edibleapple.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Well that was quick. Just one week after targeted iOS developers felt they were in the clear after Apple issued a strongly worded response to Lodsys over alleged claims of patent infringement, the patent troll has decided to move forward with its plans regardless and has filed suit against iOS developers.

Comment Re:And nothing of value was lost (Score 1) 264

You don't use a torrent to grab a three or four meg file: swarming protocols work best for sharing large files.

You don't or you shouldn't? With torrents people generally look for the album many of which are small enough that they aren't even compressed. From there they can download a single track listed in the torrent (bad for the sworm) or just download the whole album and delete the songs they don't want. If the album is well seeded, the benefit of a higher downloads speed and selection is often worth dealing with torrents, even for small files. Then you have the private trackers like jpopsuki that seed singles and package files so you can download them individually.

Comment Re:Social networks (Score 1) 295

I don't necessarily agree with this. I think that the number of people already on facebook is definitely an obstacle, but just look at its own history. You just need to create momentum, which is difficult to do but not impossible. When I first joined facebook, hardly anyone I knew outside of one specific circle of friends were on it. But I would tell my other friends about it, and eventually they'd try it out, and presumably do the same to others. I don't doubt it would change, but I doubt it would change like facebook did, at least in regards to privacy. The set-up alone would make that seem like a non-starter. All facebook needed to do was change its TOS. That doesn't seem like it'd work here. What I think their biggest challenge is going to be is to make it as easy to use/join as the more centralized social networks. Anything that starts out by saying "allows you to set up your own node" is going to turn off a vast majority of people.

Comment Re:Oh No! (Score 1) 269

I love how mixed up people are these days, and the mere idea of hallucinating is associated with the most harmful of effects any chemical could have on your brain. When in reality, there are several natural, human made substances (like DMT, check it out) that cause you to hallucinate (near-death experiences anyone?). If magnetic fields do cause people to hallucinate, there aren't inherently any health problems. There may be health problems with hanging out in that much magnetic field, but if there's not, then this would be really awesome, and there's no reason on earth why we should "think of the children"
I know you were being sarcastic, but people really do think that way :P

Comment Re:if you're in the intersection and it's red (Score 1) 976

The yellow light is just meant as a margin of error before the traffic starts going in the other direction. You're most certainly not supposed to count on the length of the yellow to clear the intersection before the red light.

The yellow light (inter-green time) is not just a margin of error, it is supposed to be a warning. If it just turned red you would have people applying emergency braking levels to avoid entering the intersection. This would lead to a lot of accidents. There is a margin of error typically 2 to 3 seconds that is built into an all red period where no lane is supposed to move, this also allows slower pedestrians to clear.

The light timing specifically for yellow lights is highly variable and is based on a number of inputs including typical traffic type, sight distance, reaction time, and speed limit to name a few. In the case of TFA it is entirely possible to "short" the light, whereby they do not allow a reasonable reaction time or allow enough distance to stop with normal braking. Reference any highway design text or specifically HCM2000 chapter 16.

Comment Re:Doesn't matter what country you are in... (Score 1) 667

I would argue that it isn't that the Constitution hasn't kept up with the time, but that our government has failed to live up to the Constitution.

When the federal government wishes to grow, it should do so by amendment - there is a process in place for that, and it works.

As for the "services" you mention, the Constitution fully supports the FBI as a federal enforcement agency. As for the standing army, we *technically* don't have one - we have an appropriations bill go through Congress that authorizes the continued expenditure of federal funds to maintain it. If Congress wanted to do away with it, all they would have to do is not pass a bill, and the funding evaporates. While I don't think this was the intent of the Framers, it certainly falls within the bounds of the authority granted to the federal government.

The rest... well, they are unconstitutional. They should be either authorized via amendment, or they should be repealed. I acknowledge that some of these programs are now part of the fabric of the American culture, but that doesn't make them right - it just makes them hard and slow to repeal.

I'm no Paulite. While I think he's got the right idea on domestic and monetary policy, he "bring them home tomorrow" foreign policy is insane. Indeed, he seeks to restore constitutional government - a noble goal - in many arenas, but he seeks to do so overnight. That would be catastrophic for this country.

As for the Second Amendment. I'm sure you're aware that the Supreme Court recently shot down the collectivist interpretation of the Second in Heller. As for the "civic purpose" part - well, yes and no. Yes, individuals were expected to be able to serve as militia to fend off attackers and to keep the peace - but that is not the rationale for the amendment, that is only it's primary use. " ... necessary to the security of a *free* state ... " is the rub - our Framers recognized that a state whose citizens where unable to purchase arms was not a free state.

Finally, as for effectiveness --- having a gun does not make you an effective fighter any more than having a hat makes you a cowboy. It takes motivation, mindset, training, and practice to become proficient in the use of firearms, and to maintain that. I agree that both sides of the argument are guilty of inflating statistics and hyperbolizing (is that a word? It is now!), but in the end, the effectiveness of the weapon is not relevant to it's status as a natural right.

Image

Police Called Over 11-Year-Old's Science Project Screenshot-sm 687

garg0yle writes "Police in San Diego were called to investigate an 11-year-old's science project, consisting of 'a motion detector made out of an empty Gatorade bottle and some electronics,' after the vice-principal came to the conclusion that it was a bomb. Charges aren't being laid against the youth, but it's being recommended that he and his family 'get counseling.' Apparently, the student violated school policies — I'm assuming these are policies against having any kind of independent thought?"

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