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Journal Journal: The USA in 50 years? 32

Anyone care to share their perspective?

I'm not giving it more than 50 years. Doesn't matter who is elected, once disparity between the top and bottom becomes to wide, once those in the middle see that no matter what they do, they're going to continue to risk being part of the bottom, and those on the bottom rungs realize that this is their lot in life, "citizen" is no longer a source of pride.

Submission + - SpaceX Just Nailed Its Second Falcon 9 Ground Landing (

SonicSpike writes: SpaceX just launched a rocket into space, then landed a substantial part of it back on solid ground for the second time. And the only reason they were able to do it was because they weren’t afraid to fail. Probably some engineering skill, too. And money.

Last night’s launch was the commercial spaceflight company’s ninth mission to the International Space Station. Its payload was a Dragon capsule loaded with two and a half tons of gear, most impressive of which is the International Docking Adaptor—a crucial modification that will give the next generation of space capsules access to the station.

SpaceX Releases Rockets-Eye View of Yesterday’s Landing
The Dragon, which should arrive at the ISS in the next two days, also has a handheld DNA sequencer, so the astronauts on board can finally figure out what’s inside all those aliens they’ve been capturing for the past decade. Just kidding, it’s for tissue from mice, and other little organisms with Earthly origins. Besides the tech and the science, the capsule is loaded with creature comforts like like food, water, and oxygen. Astronauts, what a bunch of prima donnas.

Getting that payload into orbit is priority one, but the main attraction was the landing. Not only is it a very cool engineering feat, but these landings save the company about $60 million worth of non-exploded rocket every time. So far, the company has landed four times before—once on the ground, three times on a drone barge in the middle of the ocean. Once SpaceX starts relaunching these things, they will be at a huge advantage over commercial spaceflight competitors like Blue Origin, United Launch Alliance, and Sierra Nevada.

Comment Re:reduce the amount (Score 1) 983

Funny, btw, for jpeg and mp3 backup, there is at least one lossy compression solution: http://www.elektronik.htw-aale... For up to date code take a look at the Matthias There are pre-built (command line) windows exe It's LGPL (and GPL) code fairly portable, alas, the compression isn't streamable (so the inclusion in some packers is quite hard).

Comment Re:I keep wondering why... (Score 2) 258

Fancy answer, I'm thinking about "internet" as a worldwide thing, what's the meaning of "foreign courts", where are you from? It's not the "business" area, it's the "justice", not really a nation by itself. I.E. We don't have death penalty in any "region", so we should regard USA (or China, or any other nation) as a barbarian society? Greetings.

Comment Re:"Lobbyists"? (Score 1) 150

Don't you know? Berlusconi is everything. Weird, but, w/o him the left parties would have fallen in pieces years ago (no good ideas,no leaders). I've heard something about him and: - Titanic's shipwreck - Apollo 13's troubles - some natural disasters (choose one). - the big black hole in the middle of the galaxy. Also.. italian justice is questioning him about two thousands years ago... and his collusion with Ponzio Pilato in a triple murder. Anyway, take a look at our recent history: we are a republic since 1945 and we haven't had any stable government since then. It's quite a miracle that there is still an italian republic. Oh, the law is far from perfect, but it's against the abuses (and we had a LOT of them). Greetings from one of the most beautiful and rich of art country in the world - really. I don't remember who wrote this here, but it's quite true, when you come to politics, it's like soccer (or baseball or ....put your favourite sport here...)... Reason leave. Maybe it's the same for me. P.S. psst... do you have a real opposition to spare? Even an used one. Please.

Submission + - "Brain Activity" Found in a Dead Salmon Demonstrat (

AthanasiusKircher writes: "Neuroscientist Craig Bennett used a dead salmon in his Dartmouth lab as a test object while they were evaluating new lab methods. The lab even followed proper experimental protocols, including showing the salmon photos of humans displaying various emotions. They were somewhat surprised by the results:

When they got around to analyzing the voxel (think: 3-D or 'volumetric' pixel) data, the voxels representing the area where the salmon's tiny brain sat showed evidence of activity. In the fMRI scan, it looked like the dead salmon was actually thinking about the pictures it had been shown.

Of course, the salmon wasn't actually responding to pictures illustrating human emotions. But the data manipulation commonly used in brain studies caused apparently significant patterns to appear by chance. More from the Wired article: 'The result is completely nuts — but that's actually exactly the point. Bennett, who is now a post-doc at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and his adviser, George Wolford, wrote up the work as a warning about the dangers of false positives in fMRI data. They wanted to call attention to ways the field could improve its statistical methods."

The study demonstrates the potential for misinterpretation and misuse of data in brain studies, particularly as data manipulation becomes more and more complex. Bennett notes: 'We could set our threshold [of significance] so high that we have no false positives, but we have no legitimate results.... We could also set it so low that we end up getting voxels in the fish's brain. It's the fine line that we walk.'

So far the paper has been rejected for publication a number of times, but there is a poster available that was employed in a conference presentation. Recently it has been making the rounds informally in the neuroscience community."

Submission + - VMware deprecates VMI (

ian.woodstock writes: "In a posting to the linux kernel mailing lists VMware announced it's intention to stop supporting VMI their paravirtualized extensions to the Linux kernel.
VMI's been included in SUSE Linux and Ubuntu, as separate kernels for improved virtualization performance, but according to the posts it's irrelevant given the speed of modern hardware"

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Nothing is more admirable than the fortitude with which millionaires tolerate the disadvantages of their wealth. -- Nero Wolfe