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Comment Common Assumptions (Score 1) 713

It seems like the common assumptions in the discussion are:

1) that technology will make everything possible given a long enough period of time.

2) Other species will develop the same technologies.

3) Other species will have the same desires as we do.

I see a lot of these assumptions should be looked at more closely.

For example, some of us aren't that confident in technology solving every issue. We are on a collision course right now with ourselves, in my opinion. If I were asked to assume that life would develop in a similar way as we did, then I would say that the reason we don't run into them, is that they don't survive long enough to get to other solar systems. I certainly hope that we don't make it.

I am reminded of the famous quote by Mahatma Gandhi. When he was asked what he thought about 'Western Civilization' he said he thought it would be a good idea. I hope that contact doesn't happen in my lifetime at least. *shudder*


Submission + - Robot unravels mystery of walking (

manchineel writes: Roboticists are using the lessons of a 1930s human physiologist to build the world's fastest walking robot.

Runbot is a self-learning, dynamic robot, which has been built around the theories of Nikolai Bernstein.

"Getting a robot to walk like a human requires a dynamic machine," said Professor Florentin Woergoetter.

Runbot is a small, biped robot which can move at speeds of more than three leg lengths per second, slightly slower than the fastest walking human.

Bernstein said that animal movement was not under the total control of the brain but rather, "local circuits" did most of the command and control work.


Submission + - 12 IT skills that employers can't say no to (

Lucas123 writes: "There are more IT positions open right now than recruiters can fill, according to a Computerworld story that lists the most desirable IT skills. 'The market for IT talent is hot, but only if you have the right skills. Take a look at what eight experts — including recruiters, curriculum developers, computer science professors and other industry observers — say are the hottest skills of the near future.'"

Submission + - The Ugly Truth about Best Buy Refunds ( 1

An anonymous reader writes: I'd like to warn Slashdotters about Best Buy policies for defective merchandise. From the article: They didn't care. Let me rephrase that, they don't give a shit that you just spent almost a thousand dollars on something that is defective. They don't care that it's obvious that there is no abuse whatsoever but rather that it's a defective LCD which overheated or leaked on its own. They basically blamed me — the customer — for the problem and when I told them that I've worked with computers for many years and I know what I am saying, challenging them technically, they told me "we are not saying that you broke it", but that doesn't matter because they still told me that they were not going to replace it or fix it. Then I asked them, what if the unit was like this out of the box? They would still not replace it in such instances.

Submission + - 'Whopper' squid washes up in Australia (

Raver32 writes: "A squid as long as a bus and weighing 550 pounds washed up on an Australian beach, officials said Wednesday. "It is a whopper," said Genefor Walker-Smith, a zoologist who studies invertebrates at the Tasmanian Museum. Giant squid live in waters off southern Australia and New Zealand — where a half-ton colossus, believed to be the world's largest, was caught in February. They attract the sperm whales that feed on them. The dead squid, measuring 3 feet across at its widest point and 26 feet from the tip of its body to the end of its tentacles, was found early Wednesday by a beachcomber at Ocean Beach on the island state of Tasmania's west coast, the museum said."

Submission + - New ultracapacitors may mean the death of batterys ( 1

certain death writes: "According to Technology Review a Texas based company has developed a new Ultra Capacitor that could possibly make Lead Acid and Lithium Ion batteries a thing of the past.

A secretive Texas startup developing what some are calling a "game changing" energy-storage technology broke its silence this week. It announced that it has reached two production milestones and is on track to ship systems this year for use in electric vehicles. The full story can be read on the technology review website located here.

This would be extremely great if it turns out to be true, what is your take on it?"


Submission + - Dragon Quest Google Maps (

Francesco Fondi writes: "The japanese Dragon Quest fan XB-LIM has created a Goggle Maps like map of Dragon Quest 1 (MSX/NES), Dragon Quest 2 (MSX/NES), Dragon Quest 3 (NES/SuperFamicom/GBC) and Dragon Quest 4 (NES/Playstation). It would have been really usefull if we had this kind of Google Maps back in the 80s! Dragon-Quest.html

GAMERS is the first european underground videogame magazine. Retrogaming, akihabara news, console modding and programming. Something like a mashup of MAKE magazine and EGM."


Submission + - Linux Gains Completely Fair Scheduler (

SchedFred writes: KernelTrap is reporting that Ingo Molnar's Completely Fair Scheduler, or CFS, was just merged into the Linux Kernel. The new CPU scheduler includes a pluggable framework that completely replaces Molnar's earlier O(1) scheduler, and is described to "model an 'ideal, precise multi-tasking CPU' on real hardware. CFS tries to run the task with the 'gravest need' for more CPU time. So CFS always tries to split up CPU time between runnable tasks as close to 'ideal multitasking hardware' as possible." The new CPU scheduler should improve the desktop Linux experience, and will be part of the upcoming 2.6.23 kernel.

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I find you lack of faith in the forth dithturbing. - Darse ("Darth") Vader