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Comment Re:Too much Star Trek on the ol' Netflix I think.. (Score 1) 262

Just because something looks and acts like it has consciousness does not make it so. The two facts are separate. A robot can mimic consciousness and not be aware. Conversely it would seem that humans can have consciousness and be aware and still act completely oblivious.

Submission + - SPAM: A 'Fitbit' for plants?

cithotelservice writes: (American Society of Agronomy) Knowing what physical traits a plant has is called phenotyping. Because it is such a labor intensive process, scientists are working to develop technology that makes phenotyping much easier. The tool is called the Phenocart, and it captures essential plant health data. The Phenocart measures plant vital signs like growth rate and color, the same way a Fitbit monitors human health signals like blood pressure and physical activity.
Link to Original Source

Submission + - Slashdot Poll: Enough already? (

LeadSongDog writes: Sometime early Friday this planet will hit 7-1/3 billion people. Is it time to stop the population clock?
A) Soon
B) Never
C) Overdue
D) As soon as I'm finished my Soylent Green
E) If Cowboy Neal ever finds a breeding Partner
F) I for one want to make serfs for my new robot overlords

Submission + - KFC Introduces Meal Box That Doubles As A Smartphone Charger (

An anonymous reader writes: KFC has introduced a limited edition 5-in-1 Meal Box to select KFC outlets in Delhi and Mumbai. The box has one mighty special feature: it will charge a user's smartphone while they eat. The company has partnered with a Mumbai-based digital agency, Blink Digital, to make the "Watt a Box" concept a reality. In terms of specs, the box features a built-in 6100 mAh power bank, and two USB-ports with the ability to charge Android smartphones and iPhones. KFC has launched a contest on its Facebook page, giving users a chance to win the box.

Submission + - C-SPAN Uses Periscope To Broadcast The House Sit-In (

An anonymous reader writes: C-SPAN has made history for resorting to Periscope to livestream a sit-in on the House floor. C-SPAN spokesman Howard Mortman said: "This is the first time we've ever shown video from the House floor picked up by a Periscope account." C-SPAN had to rely on Periscope for a direct feed to House proceedings because these proceedings aren't exactly official. The Washington Post reports: "Earlier today, Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) led a sit-in on the House floor to push for action on gun control, following the failure of four gun measures earlier this week in the Senate. According to an official at the House Recording Studio, the cameras that C-SPAN commonly uses to broadcast House business are 'in recess subject to the call of the chair.' No approved video feed, no problem: C-SPAN has been piping in the Periscope feed from Rep. Scott Peters, a California Democrat." The feed hasn't been as reliable as C-SPAN's official House-proceedings feed. "Well, the Periscope video froze up again," said a C-SPAN anchor. And a bit later: "We're still having some issues with that video feed." At around 3:30 p.m., C-SPAN switched to a Facebook feed where viewers could hear and watch Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) rip the "cowards who run this chamber" for failing to turn on the microphones.

Submission + - Europe's Robots To Become 'Electronic Persons' Under Draft Plan (

An anonymous reader writes: Under the European Union's new draft plan, Europe's growing army of robot workers could be classed as "electronic persons," with their owners liable to paying social security for them. Robots are only becoming more prevalent in the workplace. They're already taking on tasks such as personal care or surgery, and their population is only expected to rise as their abilities are expanded with the increased development of new technologies. A draft European Parliament motion suggests that their growing intelligence, pervasiveness and autonomy requires rethinking everything from taxation to legal liability. The draft motion called on the European Commission to consider "that at least the most sophisticated autonomous robots could be established as having the status of electronic persons with specific rights and obligations." It also suggested the creation of a register for smart autonomous robots, which would link each one to funds established to cover its legal liabilities. Patrick Schwarzkopf, managing director of the VDMA's robotic and automation department, said: "That we would create a legal framework with electronic persons — that's something that could happen in 50 years but not in 10 years. We think it would be very bureaucratic and would stunt the development of robotics," he told reporters. The report added that the robotics and artificial intelligence may result in a large part of the work now done by humans being taken over by robots, raising concerns about the future of employment and the viability of social security systems. The draft motion also said organizations should have to declare savings they made in social security contributions by using robotics instead of people, for tax purposes.

Comment Re:Android vs iPhone is not the new Mac vs Windows (Score 1) 711

Can we please talk about something else besides whether your phone is better than my phone. I mean really - aren't you all like the smartest people on the planet and we have to debate which phone gets on Facebook the best?? I mean fuck man their burning the Amazon down and fracking the planet to pieces and this is what's fucking important to talk about? Isn't your super awesome genius brain made for better things than this?? Isn't it??

Comment Automatic updates turned of in April (Score 1) 345

I started turning off automatic updates on XP boxes that people were going to keep as it had become an unnecessary service. Then I'm told that MS is going to issue another update via Windows update to IE. This irritates me. So what am I supposed to leave the Windows update service turned on just in case MS want to send another one sometime??

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The test of intelligent tinkering is to save all the parts. -- Aldo Leopold