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Comment Re:Streisand effect (Score 2) 350

This is all because republicans refuse to pass a bill that would stop people on the no fly list from buying guns.

I must have missed that part of the Constitution or the House Rules which says that if other members don't vote your way, you can coerce them into doing so by staging a sit-in until they change their mind.

Personally I would have had the Sergeant-at-Arms remove them, but I suppose that would have been bad PR.

Comment Re:makes no sense (Score 5, Interesting) 176

Several reasons, here's two:

1) They want to run correlations to see if they can find people abusing prescription medicines and bust them.

2) If they want to put pressure on someone for any reason, they want to dig up their prescription records. Aha, you've had several prescriptions for Percocet, does your professional review board know about your drug habit? Does your boss know you've been prescribed SSRIs? Do you want them to? No? Better play ball.

Comment Re:Why not press the switch (Score 1) 170

They could most certainly turn off civilian GPS on select parts of the planet, like a over a continent. A GPS satellite only serves a given cone below its current position, by turning a satellite off when the cone enters an area you want to block it in, and on again if it leaves it you can block the whole area. It of course only works on bigger "resolutions" like per-continent, but it works.

Not sure about the current satellites, but the earlier satellites didn't have this capability (or at least the government claimed they didn't)

Comment Re: Slow them with real traffic (Score 1) 767

Yes, there are official alternatives to long-running construction projects, but in the US there is no legal requirement to stick to them. Streets are legal to use for through automobile traffic except where explicitly designated otherwise. In the pre-GPS days, straying from the official detour was often a big win because pretty much no one knows how to read a map (or navigate by the seat of their pants) so you could bypass the horrific traffic on the detour that way. Now, with GPS, all routes fill up.

Heavy trucks and/or commercial vehicles are often restricted to the official detour, because the other roads might disallow such traffic (as might the streets on the detour when it's not a detour), but that doesn't apply to car commuters.

Comment The usual way (Score 5, Insightful) 515

That is, the usual way for 1980s computer geeks. Self-taught BASIC on an Apple II using a few books on Applesoft and Integer BASIC. Later Pascal also on the Apple II with a few books including Jensen and Wirth's PASCAL User Manual and Report. Learned C (K&R, mind you, none of that prototype crap) on a Mac XL with the old Megamax compiler. Picked up 6502 assembler out of necessity in there, also 68000 and 6809.

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