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Comment Re:When the North Korean People (Score 4, Insightful) 441

Oh, God, no.

Yes, I want the North Korean government to get its well-deserved comeuppance as much as the next guy, but take a look at Seoul on Google Earth. Now drag northwards until you come to the North Korean border. Not very far, is it? Forget fancy missiles, it's within artillery range. It won't matter that they get "(at most) a couple of miles into South Korean territory." By the time they've done so, one of Asia's financial and industrial capitals will lie in ruins. The fact that the already mostly empty shell of Pyongyang will be razed to the ground shortly thereafter is cold comfort.

Classic Games (Games)

Super Mario Bros. 3 Level Design Lessons 95

An anonymous reader writes with this excerpt from Significant Bits about how the early level design in Super Mario Bros. 3 gradually introduced players to the game without needing something as blatant and obtrusive as a tutorial: "Super Mario Bros. 3 contains many obvious design lessons that are also present in other games, e.g., the gradual layering of complexity that allows players to master a specific mechanic. What surprised me during my playthrough, though, was how some of these lessons were completely optional. The game doesn't have any forced hand-holding, and it isn't afraid of the player simply exploring it at his own pace (even if it means circumventing chunks of the experience)."

Comment Very Afraid of the Teleporter (Score 5, Interesting) 633

I voted for the replicator. End scarcity. That'd be pretty wonderful.

The idea of a teleporter actually frightens me, though. I can't shake the idea that you're actually destroyed in the teleporter, and when you're recreated at the other end, there's an entirely different "you" created, with all the memories of the final copy. However, the "you" that got into the teleporter ceases to exist. And this terrible death happens to you over and over, with the "new you" and the outside world utterly oblivious.

It kind of recasts Star Trek into a horrible, inadvertant tragedy. Yes, yes, I know. "It's just a show, I should really just relax."


Man Builds His Own Subway 174

jerryjamesstone writes "Everybody is into rail these days; it is the greenest way to get around next to a bike. Leonid Mulyanchik has been into it for years since before the Berlin Wall fell, since before the first Macintosh, building his own private underground Metro railway system. English-Russia says that he has been doing it with his pension, that it is all legal and approved and that he is still at it. Gizmodo calls it 'Partly the traditional, inspiring, one man against all odds type of persistence, but more the obsessive, borderline insane persistence.'" Update: 06/02 07:33 GMT by T : And if you're the type to visit Burning Man, you can actually ride a home-made monorail this summer, too.

90% of the Universe Found Hiding In Plain View 279

The Bad Astronomer writes "As much as 90% of previously hidden galaxies in the distant Universe have been found by astronomers using the Very Large Telescope in Chile. Previous surveys had looked for distant (10 billion light years away) galaxies by searching in a wavelength of ultraviolet light emitted by hydrogen atoms — distant young galaxies should be blasting out this light, but very few were detected. The problem is that the ultraviolet light never gets out of the galaxies, so we never see them. In this new study, astronomers searched a different wavelength emitted by hydrogen, and voila, ten times as many galaxies could be seen, meaning 90% of them had been missed before."

Comment Re:If you are worried about it... (Score 1) 791

The RF geeks replying that it probably won't do any harm are absolutely correct. It will almost certainly be entirely harmless.

However, the people saying that it will adversely affect your resale value are also correct, and in this case their opinion is the far more important one. Anyone purchasing a Manhattan penthouse will certainly do sufficient due diligence to look out the window before purchasing. The future purchaser won't think, "Hey, there's a cell tower right by me, maybe I should ask Slashdot." They'll think, "OMG, my testicles will fry! Abort transaction!"

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Every nonzero finite dimensional inner product space has an orthonormal basis. It makes sense, when you don't think about it.