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Comment Tzar Bomba (Score 4, Informative) 566

That is a big firecracker, but it is no Tsar Bomba. The Tsar Bomba was tested in 1961, so the technological capability for high yield bombs is old news. Best bit about the Tsar Bomba: "In theory, the bomb had a maximum yield of 100 megatons if it were to have included a U-238 tamper, but because only one bomb was built, this theory was never demonstrated."

Here is a short documentary film on the Tsar Bomba.

Comment Temporal Anomaly (Score 1) 44

wireless connectivity that's faster than our speediest home internet service, is years away.

global standard {is} expected in 2020.

Verizon said it will begin commercially deploying its service next year.

Either Verizon is managed by Time Lords or the company is going to deploy 5G technology before global standards are agreed.

Comment Re:too much fuss (Score 1) 209

Second, everyone - commenters included - seem to confuse AI with artificial consciousness.

It almost follows that if there is artificial intelligence then there must be artificial consciousness, but I doubt it. Either an entity is conscious or not. Since the ancients we have not invented a definitive test to determine when something is conscious, and yet this is not a moot point: Maybe the rocks and trees are conscious but no one can tell so terminating their existence does not matter; maybe you have a simulacrum of consciousness but no one can tell so ending your existence matters a lot, especially to you.

Unlawfully and definitively ending the productive capacity of an entity which is conscious is murder. I suspect there will be a long genocide of silicon life until the law catches up with that fact.

Comment Here's a study that proves you right (Score 4, Interesting) 192

I remember reading about this study this years ago, it shows that people with more bumper stickers are more likely to be involved in road rage incidents. The theory is, people who personalize their vehicle tend to view the vehicle as their own private space, even when on the public roads. Because they are in their own private space, they literally do feel that they own the road.

Comment First Ammendment (Score 3, Interesting) 156

Isn't a ban on encryption a ban on free speech?

It seems to me that encrypted communication is akin to two people having a conversation in Klingon. If a third party, a police officer, were to interrupt the conversation shouting, "Hey! Speak English! You must be understood!", then that would clearly be a violation of first amendment rights. I cannot imagine a judge would allow the police officer to use a defense of, "Well, they could have been planning terrorism." If the conversation is electronic, and the government does not know what is being said, then it still seems absurd to me for that to be illegal.

Banning encrypted communication is akin to banning all foreign languages, made-up languages, and baby talk. Speak English, little baby, you must be understood or the cops will get you! Absurd.

Comment Less Free Than Stated (Score 3, Insightful) 330

If the CNIL's proposed approach were to be embraced as the standard for Internet regulation, we would find ourselves in a race to the bottom. In the end, the Internet would only be as free as the world's least free place.

Correction: The Internet would only be as free as the intersection of all least free places. Anything that is forbidden anywhere would be forbidden everywhere.

Comment Re: Whats wrong with US society (Score 1) 609

poorest state is wealthier than the UK on a per capita basis

According to Wikipedia, the poorest state is Mississippi with a per capita GDP of $28,900. Depending on whose figures you use, the UK has a per capita GDP of between $37,000 and $39,000, which would rank the UK somewhere around #32 out of 50 states. Or were you not talking about GDP?

Comment The Dead Who Do Not Vote (Score 1) 609

Here is an article from The Society Pages about dead people who won't vote:

Black people in the U.S. vote overwhelmingly Democratic. They also have, compared to Whites, much higher rates of infant mortality and lower life expectancy. Since dead people have lower rates of voting, that higher mortality rate might affect who gets elected. What would happen if Blacks and Whites had equal rates of staying alive?

These articles are interesting, but the conclusions are too simple: It is too simple to say that if things were different then people would act as if things were the same.

Submission + - Automakers to gearheads: Stop repairing cars (autoblog.com)

Mr_Blank writes: Automakers are supporting provisions in copyright law that could prohibit home mechanics and car enthusiasts from repairing and modifying their own vehicles. In comments filed with a federal agency that will determine whether tinkering with a car constitutes a copyright violation, OEMs and their main lobbying organization say cars have become too complex and dangerous for consumers and third parties to handle. The dispute arises from a section of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act that no one thought could apply to vehicles when it was signed into law in 1998. But now, in an era where cars are rolling computing platforms, the U.S. Copyright Office is examining whether provisions of the law that protect intellectual property should prohibit people from modifying and tuning their cars.

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