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Comment Re:iTunes purchase? (Score 4, Insightful) 105

The guy running the torrent site is buying stuff on iTunes?

Yes, I get the irony of that question. But a better question is why does the guy who is running a company that is seriously illegal in the eyes of interests who have deep pockets not have absolute separation between his personal and corporate activity? He used the same IP address? Really? Isn't he smarter than that? Isn't he (rightfully) paranoid about every single action in his daily life?

Comment Re:Really? (Score 1) 983

Or they could have ...

a) used a tranquilizing dart, either from afar, or from a gun mounted on the robot and fired remotely
b) used infrasound
c) put a gun with non-lethal projectiles (ie, beanbag rounds) on the robot
d) put a flash-bang on the robot to stun the suspect and then rush him
e) disarmed and disabled the suspect with a water cannon
f) any of the other items on the long list of non-lethal but disabling weapons

But, in this case, since the suspect was targeting police, and the police were geared up for military combat, a different choice was made.

Comment Aerodynamic nightmare (Score 1) 298

Look at the article. No really, look at it. You don't have to read the text, just glance at the pictures for a few seconds. I'll wait ... done? Great.

In an era where 2-3% improvement in efficiency is considered a breakthrough, creating a design that has permanently extended landing struts and non-integrated passenger / cargo compartments, would seem to be a show-stopping problem for low-drag aerodynamic design.

That and, who would want to ride in a cabin where most of the windows are blocked by the landing struts?

As a poster above put it, this design should be relegated to the amusing thought pile that's full of such one-offs that design students without any solid engineering chops put forth periodically.

Comment Embedding videos in PDFs, then? (Score 1) 172

One of the really useful features in PDF is the ability via Adobe Reader to embed flash videos in PDFs. It's a very convenient way to deliver videos to a client (or in our case, grant review committee) in a nicely packaged way that is guaranteed to be playable (everyone can get Reader). Moreover, everyone that accepts documents for various applications in my circles, accepts them in PDF.

If we can't use flash (and I recognize that, eventually, another solution will become necessary), what's the alternative for embedding videos in a universally readable document?

Comment Re:This is the problem. (Score 4, Informative) 231

Your model of energy usage is lacking the majority daytime use: commercial and industrial. These uses match insolation (and therefore available solar-based power) pretty well, it turns out.

Here's a very, very simple part of it: cooling office buildings. Mostly, that needs to happen when the sun is shining, because that's when (a) the building is being warmed by the sun, and (b) the building is occupied by people who want it cooler.

Comment Re:idiots again (Score 1) 113

So making an attempt to pay off a debt somehow "erases" the irresponsibility of running up the debt in the first place?

You're saying that, not me.

I'm not arguing whether it is right or just or ethical to go into debt


Nope, I didn't. I argued about whether it is right or just or ethical TO PAY OFF ONE'S DEBTS.

And, should anyone else get all huffity, plenty of Democrats, Republicans, and Independents, including our current sitting president, have racked up massive campaign debts. I make no judgement on whether going into debt to finance a campaign is good or not -- I accept it as the current standard behavior. Paying off one's debts (which seems to be a long-term problem for Democrats, Republicants, and Independents, also including our current sitting president), is a morally good thing.

Comment Re:Republican Financial Acumen (Score 1) 113

Why is this comment marked funny? Paying of 1/4 of a million-plus dollar debt in about nine months is (a) nothing to sneeze at, and (b) fiscally responsible. The campaign is repaying its loans. How is that not good? How is that not the right thing to do?

I'm not arguing whether it is right or just or ethical to go into debt to campaign for public office (from my naive understanding, nearly all major campaigns operate under a deficit spending model), but there's no way you can argue that making efforts to pay off your debts, and making decent progress at it, is dishonorable.

Furthermore, we have not idea what the terms of the loans are. He could have 20 years to pay it off, or 2, for all we know.

Comment Re:Wherefore? (Score 1) 331

The -- and really, the ONLY -- thing going for VB6 is the ease of integrating rudimentary visual controls to create a GUI with minimal effort. You can get a pretty sophisticated GUI (I'm embarrassed to say that I have maxed out the number of available widgets -- text boxes, labels, drop-down selection lists, etc -- on more than one application) in nearly no time. The code that gets generated is incredibly slow, but if you're super-duper careful, you can squeeze reasonable performance out of the compiler. It never gets above reasonable, though.

I've tried writing a GUI in C, and it was an awful experience. Same for MATLAB. If you allows me to call web pages a GUI, then same for PHP / Perl, and it was only slightly less painful.

I wrote a very simple GUI in Visual Studio 2010 C, and it was ... OK. Wouldn't want to make a really complex one, though.

So, in the end, there is a reason to use VB6, sort-of. Kinda. Maybe. If it ran on Win7, there'd be a stronger case for using it.

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