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Comment Obsolecense (Score 3, Insightful) 231

The biggest problem I see with these systems is very rapid obsolescence. You'll generally replace a phone or tablet a lot more often than a car. There should be a standard port to attach a tablet to and the car manufacturer can offer software for all the major platforms, or you can choose to use something else. Instead we seem to be getting a bunch of built in tablets running code that we have no control over and can't replace. Is anybody sorting this out?

Comment Re:Mental Note for Slashdot Editors... (Score 1) 437

It's got nothing to do with not liking Halloween. Aussies love a good dress and piss up as much as the next nation. The grumpyness comes from the feeling that you are being invaded and taken over by a foreign power. You know that creeping dread that the Chinese are going to take over the world by buying everything that you see on TV even if you don't feel it yourself? The rest of the world has felt like that about the US for as long as I know. We get all your movies and TV and by and large the US ignores the cultural output of the rest of the world and even remakes the good stuff so that it contains American accents and references. It's nobodies fault and it's not helpful but when people see kids aping American customs it gives them the shits (not literally, that's an Australianism).

Comment Head tracking 3D (Score 1) 404

I was pretty interested in 3D for gaming until I actually tried it and found it pretty "meh" after a while. It actually made it more difficult to see detail, it certainly wasn't any more immersive. What did look good to me was head tracking. You'll still get the popping at the edges I guess but it would feel much more like you were there than stereoscopic 3D from a fixed POV.

Comment How much will you pay for safety? (Score 5, Insightful) 493

Of course the plants can be made safer. Everything can be made safer. We could all wear crash helmets 24/7. All cars could be made crash proof (take the wheels off). "All the dams in France bursting at once and flooding the plants", if that happens the least of your problems is the nuclear reactor. Just like the problems at Fukushima were the least of the worries of the 20,000 killed by the earthquake and tsunami. No industry in the world spends money on preventing staggeringly unlikely events causing harm like the nuclear industry has to. Do you want to double your electricity bill so that the chances of a disaster move from 1 in 10 million years to 1 in 20 million according to the design calcs? Humans are staggering bad at risk assessment and the nuclear (and terrorism) panic proves it conclusively. You would think that a bunch of geeks could figure some basic stats.

Comment Re:Which illustrates what we already knew (Score 1) 298

Don't you think that you might be asking for the impossible? How exactly is Linux supposed to keep up with the latest hardware developments and support legacy hardware and stay small? Linux can be paired down to be tiny and run with very little resources but it can't to that as part of a mainstream distro trying to cater for everyone from your gran to a linux gamer to a developer. I think you might have your rose-tinteds on about the good old days when hardware compatibility was a nightmare and the amount of linux software was a tiny fraction of what we have today.

Comment Re:Your kidding, right? (Score 1) 585

I don't think it's the testing that makes UK drivers better, it's the tiny roads with cars parked on both sides. You have to be aware of the size of your car and what is going on around you all the time or you hit something (I learned to drive in the UK). Here in Western Australian (and in the US from what I've seen) the roads and lanes are wide, long and straight and half the drivers are asleep.

Comment Re:Mark Zuckerberg and Ted Nugent (Score 1) 544

The point I think you are missing is choice.

For most of history (and for most people in the world today) if they want to get enough nutrition to survive they eat meat, that's why we're evolutionarily equipped for it. Our own survival tends to come before the pain and death of animals that we have control over. I get that, and under the same conditions I would kill and eat a pig. Frankly in extremis I might eat a person.

The difference is that in our hermetically sealed, mollycoddled, western lives we can get all the nutrition we need without the pain and death of other animals (other than the poor sods breaking their backs in the production of veggie food of course). Some of us make that choice. You can argue about what constitutes morality until you are blue in the face, we all draw lines in arbitrary places about the stuff we think is right and wrong.

I have to wonder why you are so angry about this. Nobody is threatening to take your steak away. I think the point that some people are making is simply that if you care about how an animal lives or dies, which Zuckerburg seems to be claiming he does, you could simply choose not to eat them.

Comment Don't bother. (Score 2) 277

If I remember correctly the reported levels of contamination in the food and water supply in Japan were, even at their peek, in the order of a couple of 100Bq per kg. You need to put a sample in a counter or spectrometer for some time to be able to tell those levels from background. Pointing a GM tube at pieces of spinach to see if one is contaminated more than another is futile, all you are going to notice is variations in background. You can have fun finding all sorts of slightly radioactive things with a counter if you like but unless you are willing to spend >$10k on a portable gamma spectrometer which _might_ be able to distinguish tiny amounts of I-131 or Cs-137 from background you are not going to find anything in the food.

Comment Detectable means nothing! (Score 4, Insightful) 150

You can detect (and identify) the radiation from the atmospheric bomb testing that took place decades ago! Radiation detection equipment is extremely sensitive. Without numbers (and units) "detected" means absolutely nothing. Please /. stop reporting this non-news, it's just infuriating to anyone with even a basic understanding of radiation safety/physics.

Comment Legal Issues (Score 1) 293

It'll be interesting how the governments of the world choose to deal with self driving cars. They are bound to be statistically much better than humans but I bet it will be a long time before you don't need a license holding, sober, able-bodied person behind the wheel even though most of them will be checking their Facebook updates on the dashboard screen rather than "supervising" the car.

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Reality must take precedence over public relations, for Mother Nature cannot be fooled. -- R.P. Feynman