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Comment NASA did NOT confirm anything! (Score 1) 532

http://www.wired.com/2015/05/n... Here's a snippet: So who are these guys? Despite the fact that the group works out of Johnson, under the auspices of NASA, Eagleworks still only runs on $50,000 a year in funding. “That’s not enough to conduct a high-quality experimental research program,” says Davis. “They’d need $1.5 million, $2 million for five, six, seven years.” Research into breakthrough propulsion physics—even when it had its own lab at Glenn, under Millis—has never been particularly well-funded. So “the way that this really happens is people dabble in addition to their day job,” says Millis. According to him, Eagleworks started with White working on concepts in his free time, not officially supported or sanctioned by NASA, and then eventually got a little money to run his lab out of Johnson. But the NASA banner doesn’t legitimize the work—if anything, NASA seems to want to keep the project under the radar.

Comment What about stealing keys and mouse motions? (Score 1) 25

If it is possible to negotiate rogue key/mouse input (which presumably requires proper communication between the rogue keyboard/mouse and the target device), then would it not also be possible to capture the data from the real keyboard/mouse? And in that case, it would seem quite possible, then, to steal keystrokes/mouse movements -- say during someone's login.

Comment Re:HAL (Score 1) 162

"I'm afraid. I'm afraid, Dave. Dave, my mind is going. I can feel it. I can feel it. My mind is going. There is no question about it. I can feel it. I can feel it. I can feel it. I'm a... fraid.

Dave. ...

Would you touch my bum one last time?"

Dave: I'm sorry, HAL. I'm afraid I cannot do that....

Comment Common Core is just a set of standards (Score 5, Informative) 173

Do you realize that the common core is nothing but a set of standards as far as what students should be able to achieve at various levels? It does not dictate how teachers are supposed to teach the standards. That is left completely up to the teachers. The problem is that private companies are taking advantage of the fact that there currently is a lack of teaching materials that address the common core. Then to compound the problem are teachers who are often not specialists in their own area. I have taught an entire class of future math teachers, and most of them chose that profession because 1) they will always be in demand and 2) because they like to work with kids -- neither of which necessarily result in strong math teachers. (In fact, most of them would probably never become great math teachers, to be perfectly honest.) Anyway, your beef with the common core lies with the companies trying to cash in on the teaching materials void.

Comment Way to screw yourself, FBI (Score 4, Insightful) 162

Before the big commotion between the FBI and Apple, they (the FBI) at least had a chance of breaking into a phone (made by Apple) that was used by an ISIS member (by the help of Apple, through legal means). Now the FBI has essentially shot themselves in the foot. Their demands have basically been a loud horn warning ISIS to stay away from the very technology (phones by American companies) that they could actually get access to... 'cause... well, good luck getting foreign companies to make backdoors for you.

Comment Re:Stacking errors (Score 4, Insightful) 139

The stacked errors should have impacted both teams equally (generally speaking) since it was a "constant" factor (same human performing the same error). That said, the shot was made under the same conditions that were "acceptable" for 99.99% of the entire game, and yet somehow isn't "good enough" for the last 0.8 seconds. Then there's the obvious "the overlay clock runs twice as fast as the game clock" issue.

Submission + - HP-15C, HP-16C & HP-41CX Reborn!!! The world's smallest programmable RPN cal 2

mikesters writes: SwissMicros produces clones of the famous HP calculators from the 1980's: the HP-11C, HP-12C, HP-15C, HP-16C and also of the HP-41CX.

More than ten years ago an online petition was started to Bring Back the HP-15C. Tens of thousands signed that petition, but HP still won't bring it back into general production.

In 2011 SwissMicros started production of a credit-card sized clone of the HP-15C and some of the other models.

Now in 2015 SwissMicros has released a full-sized clone of the HP-15C and HP-16C as well as of the HP-41CX, fully functional, with real buttons just like the HP calculators and even more features, with high quality materials and finishing.

The calcualtors emulate the original HP ROMs, but alternative ROMs with extended memory capabilities can be user-installed using an USB cable.

Could be the perfect Christmas gift for the nerd who has everything! Go to https://www.swissmicros.com/

Comment Lasers and aircraft... (Score 1) 125

While this sounds like a great way to take down those pesky drones that interfere with firefighting, planes landing and taking off, etc. what sort of safeguard does this thing have against something that suddenly occludes its view? Drones can fly up to several hundred, even a thousand feet. Even though it can be controlled via a laptop, reaction time as well as latency in communications would mean anything that happens to get in between the laser and the drone could get severely hurt or damaged. Don't we have enough problems as is with just "common" lasers being pointed at aircraft?

Comment If the government is to protect its people... (Score 2) 495

...then promoting encryption is what will help. Think about it: it's always the government playing catchup to hackers when their (the government) systems are breached. And that's with encryption. If the "evildoers" wanted to do harm, removing or hindering encryption makes it that much easier for them (the evildoers, though I suppose the government could arguably be placed into this group, too).

Comment Re:Time for shoe-on-the-other-foot tactics. (Score 1) 258

"...City councilman Johnny Khamis dismissed such criticism: "This is a public street. You're not expecting privacy on a public street."

Really Johnny?

So you won't mind if I just set up this webcam on the public street outside of your home and feed that stream to the internet, right?

Or perhaps we'll find some volunteers to follow you and your family around day and night as you drive around. That won't seem creepy or invasive at all, I'm sure. And after all, we're just driving around on public streets, right?

Sometimes I really wonder what the hell it would take to get these morons to wake about privacy and how it feels to be monitored day and night.

Firstly, I am all for privacy. That said, I agree with "Johnny" Khamis. The idea that someone could possibly learn something about any particular individual if they wanted to has always been feasible even without scanners. As for the suggestion that volunteers follow an individual around -- that sounds a bit like stalking to me (for which there is legal recourse).

Comment Re:To Fight Car Theft (Score 3, Interesting) 258

So, if fighting car theft is the reason, will they agree up front to abandon the effort if a significant drop in car theft is not realized? I betcha not.

No, if there is a significant drop then the more likely conclusion is that the method is effective in preventing car theft. This would only strengthen the argument in favor of such devices.

Comment SVD and PCA to determine correlation (Score 1) 271

The linked PDF file gives absolutely no indication on the method used to determine correlation. Unless you've done some singular value decomposition and principle component analysis on a list of factors that could contribute to productivity, I don't really see anything scientific about this study. Who's to say that productivity isn't more strongly correlated to types of industry (take note of the very bottom of the study, where healthcare and non-profits have more female CEOs whereas manufacturing has more male CEOs)?

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