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Comment Re:GM producers are shooting themselves in the foo (Score 1) 514

The GM people don't want to be pushed into a situation similar to the gluten people - where idiotic superstitious people avoid their product

Examine what you are doing. You are arguing against everyone (that includes you) having more information available on their food because... they might waste time and energy avoiding things which may well prove to be harmless? Do you realize that not disclosing this information will convince large numbers of people that GMOs are in fact harmful to health, or that there is something else wrong with GMOs, something worth hiding? I wonder, if we had skipped this streisand-effect phase and mandated GMO labeling years ago, would anyone really care about it today? Maybe a few hardcore skeptics and Infowars fans, who would almost certainly be growing/canning/cooking all their own food already.

At the very least, I think you should have to turn in your nerd card for arguing against having more information available. I am baffled by how common this sentiment is on Slashdot; things sure have changed from the STEM-friendly hobbyist/DIY Slashdot I remember from the early 2000s, full of people who sought out and argued over the most trivial pieces of information.

There's a real strong-state, government-is-your-father-eternal attitude in that quoted section above that isn't warranted at all. The idea that government's proper role is to make the final call on what the people have a right to know; after all, they're just stupid superstitious plebs who would misunderstand or misapply the information, anyway. It's not like we're talking about something where there's an argument to be made that widespread knowledge could be trouble - like detailed plans and specifications on how to build thermonuclear devices (is that still officially classified material in the US?) - we're just talking about more descriptive labeling for food here.

First, this is a democratic republic, not some dictatorship. The people's wishes, even if they are silly or stupid, are supposed to be driving government, not the other way around. Yes, yes, pure democracy is capricious, and our government has checks and balances, though ever since Wickard v. Filburn inverted the commerce clause, I can't think of any that apply to this situation as the law is currently interpreted.

Second, you neglected to explain how labeling for GMOs would harm anyone in any way. The US isn't Africa during a drought, it's not like we have some shortage of farm capacity in the US that necessitates improved yields from GMOs... heck, we have so much excess capacity we can afford to screw around with organic farming's low yields. I guess it could harm the bottom line of food companies looking to pay off their R&D costs; though I'm pretty sure protecting corporate profits isn't a duty of government, and besides, if demand for GMOs fell, food companies would start selling more GMO-free foods to meet the changing market demand. I guess it could make GMOs harder to find for individuals seeking them out, though I'm not sure why exactly someone would do that (are there advantages? I haven't looked into it, myself), or why the onus should be on those avoiding GMOs to make GMOs more available for others.

Third... I see a lot of room for improvement in food labeling standards besides GMOs. Nutrition facts were a good start, but I'd like to see it made accurate to 0.1 g, not just to the nearest 1 g like now (would save diabetics a lot of grief from improperly gauging their sugar intake). While we're at it, let's also start using the actual chemical names of more of the ingredients instead of vague claims like "natural flavors". And if I'm buying produce, I'd like to see a box showing the levels of cadmium, lead, benzene, etc. in the soil - if I can get a report updated once per year on how many ppm of lead, arsenic, and various other nasties I'm getting in my tap water each year, why can't I find this same information for the food I eat? It's not like any of those requirements (or GMO labeling) would be more than a trifle for food companies to meet. And it's not like the information causes trouble for people who don't care - they don't have to read it. And if all this information is too much to fit on food packaging, I'm sure there's at least room for a QR code leading to the full information online.

Disclaimer: I don't give a damn one way or the other whether the food I'm buying is GMO-free or USDA certified organic. But a lot of people seem to care about these things, and it's no business of mine what foods they choose to eat or choose to shun, even if I think they might be doing it wrong. Only an insufferable busybody would do something like that.

Comment Re:DO NOT WANT (Score 1) 55

Consoles let you game on your TV using a game controller.
PCs are the more expensive option

How's the weather in 2008?
A decent gaming PC (read: as good or better graphics/framerate vs. consoles) w/ HDMI output on a midrange graphics card is $500 now. Steam big picture mode is free, usb controllers are everywhere. New console is what? $100 less? But the higher average price of games means you break even once you buy 3-4 games. Buy more, and the console option costs more than the pc. You know how computers aren't really dramatically faster or more capable today than in 2011? Consoles are even worse about that, they just hide it better with market segmentation ("exclusives"). The result: even a midrange pc from a few years ago can handle modern games just fine.

(consoles are) good for action games, sports games and action oriented RPGs.

Action games? Pretty sure no one at quakecon uses a controller.
Sports games? lol, consoles can have that one. With my compliments.
aRPGs? Do those even exist anymore, outside of Path of Exile and Diablo? Or do you mean Bethesda's single-player-only-MMO walking simulators?

Unless anonymous coward really, really wants to play Bloodborne or NFL Roster Update 2k15, the PC seems like the obvious choice. Has the largest catalog of games, barely more expensive hardware, cheaper games, entire genres of games that don't exist on consoles (RTS)...

Comment Re:Don't we (the US) already have that... (Score 1) 1291

I don't believe that there should be a basic living stipend, unless everyone, even those who work, receive it.

I feel about the same. For a basic income to work, it really would have to be _EVERYONE_ receiving it.

No matter how esteemed or hated or wealthy or poor, everyone needs to get it. Do that, and you will have a true safety net on your hands. I don't feel that things like SNAP or section 8 housing really count. They don't actually give needy people the one thing that solves most of life's worst problems: money. Because even if you're kept well-fed and housed by the gov't, emergencies can still arise. It doesn't help that these things can be withheld from people, IIRC a criminal record can disqualify you. Which is sad, because a lot of criminals are pretty desperate for a job or a place to live, and it's not a bad bet that without an outside influence, their first instinct might be to break the law to get what they want...

Comment Re:Yawn. Last Ditch Cash Grab. (Score 4, Insightful) 26

The 28nm is frustrating, yes. But AMD and nVidia seem to both be suffering equally from a bad case of "not being Intel, lord of the fabs". It's interesting to compare their strategies for making the most of their situation.

nVidia: Pushes closed gameworks devtools with so much tessellation that triangles become smaller than pixels. Hampers performance on nVidia cards, severely hampers performance on AMD cards. Gameworks contracts stipulate that nVidia has executive control over the final shipped code.

AMD: Bets big on hardware capable of asynchronous computing going back to GCN 1.0 (2012). Creates proof of concept API (Mantle) used in a handful of games to show it is faster than DirectX 11. Microsoft later assimilates all the key ideas of Mantle into the DirectX 12 specification.

The result: AMD users have to spend 5 minutes googling and turning down tessellation settings to below placebo-levels to get acceptable frame rates on some current titles like Witcher 3. nVidia users will have to buy new cards to run DirectX 12 titles natively; their current cards can emulate async compute successfully but cannot harness any of the performance benefits.

The difference: While they have both been stuck on 28nm for years, AMD spent their time and money on making structural hardware and API design improvements that would pay dividends later (not just in async compute; AMD has now shipped a product with HBM, another promising technology). nVidia spent their time and money on rent-seeking profit schemes that can best be described as hurting their customers less than the competition.

Even though AMD and nVidia are basically tied for performance and value now on current titles, AMD cards have an interesting feature set. It reminds me of the GeForce 5800 vs. the Radeon 9700, where the major advantages of team red didn't become apparent until a year or so after release when DirectX 9 games ran slower and looked worse on nVidia's cards. I'm definitely interested in how this will play out with DirectX 12 games set to release in under a year (like the new Deus Ex).

Comment Re:Slower in games, faster in vector maths (Score 0) 53

I still have a "vintage 2006" Core 2 Quad in my gaming desktop. It's one of the original quad core monsters. It's so old it's on 65nm tech and it actually has two processor dies on one package that communicate over FSB. It's one of the last Intel chips without an on-die memory controller... it certainly COULD be paired with nice fast DDR3, but my old motherboard has DDR2-800 memory, and I'm not even running in dual channel because I buy mismatched old ram for cheap from friends.

When I noticed my pc was getting a bit slow a few years ago, I put a $20 Hyper 212+ cooler on there and overclocked it +45% to 3.5 Ghz. Had to raise the Vcore all the way to 1.6V, enough to make people on overclocking forums wince, but the thing is _stable_ and has been for years. I did the math and this "105 watt" rated cpu is sucking down 191 watts now. Absolutely amazed at how cheap good CPU cooling is today.

Paired with a Radeon 7850 I picked up for $180 a few years ago, it's good for 40+ fps on anything but the most poorly optimized single-threaded games I play. Any Crysis, any STALKER (even with punishing community-made mods with extra pretty everywhere), World of Tanks, Deus Ex:HR... had a blast playing all of them! At this point, pushing and prodding my el cheapo system to get a good frame rate in my games is half the satisfaction of gaming to me :P

Every once in a while I spec out a new build and see if it's worth it to me to plunk down a few hundred for an upgrade. So far, it just hasn't been worth it. Modern games are pretty good about using 3-4 cores; video encodes (the only other demanding thing I do) are embarrassingly parallel, and now that I have an SSD in my pc it hardly ever has a "senior moment". If I were building a new pc right now I'd probably go with an AMD vishera build. Never mind the tech is a few years old... they're cheap, they're FULL-FEATURED, they're FULLY OVERCLOCKABLE, and AMD doesn't play dirty like Intel, who rigs compilers and sends out PR shills everywhere. Or maybe you think the solution to hot chips is to spend millions on shills to insult AMD rather than just make an appropriately sized heatsink/fan that would cost another dollar to ship to the customer.

I've probably used enough Intel hate buzzwords to summon Hairyfeet to this thread, haha. But the man speaks the truth. This "Intel rules AMD drools" sentiment among gamers makes me wonder how many have tried fueling up thier Honda Civics with 100-low-lead airport gas -_- MAKES IT GO FASTER!!

Comment Re:Sigh. 28nm... (Score 1) 77

I guess it's just the way the engineering played out. Basically everyone except Intel is stuck on 28nm, so there's not much to work with... might as well pay your engineers to rig up a way to deal with all that heat. At least AMD is putting effective coolers on their cards instead of nVidia just putting the "prettiest" blower on there.

I don't really share your want for lower-power graphics cards though. These are *desktop* parts connected to the electrical mains. I don't live in communist germany where electricity costs 3-4x as much as it should, the cost is negligible for me; all I care about is maximum performance per unit cost; if that means a 1.2 kW system then so be it!

Comment Re:Three thoughts... (Score 1) 394

Only explanation I can think of is: rear facing seats aren't always safer.

During a crash, shit will be flying fowards at very high speeds. If an overhead bin in row 30 crumples and a gym bag full of barbells sails into the aisle seat in row 20, you'd want that to hit a padded headrest of a seat bolted to the floor, not the front of your face.

Comment Re:Fee Fees Hurt? (Score 2) 270

In fact, class warfare is precisely the mass of the population fighting against the elite tyrants, i.e. workers against capitalists in Marxist terms.

That's always the official story. In practice, an environment of constant fear and distrust is created as the instigators use class warfare to set the population against itself, throwing the country into chaos, giving the instigators more favorable odds for their coup against the existing elite.

You appear to be using some strange American interpretation of the term "class warfare".

No, he's just saying it like it is. Here's a shot in the dark: maybe he knows about the post-war "liberation" of China, where [Peasant A], who owned one cooking pot, would accuse his neighbor [Peasant B], who owned TWO cooking pots ("oh, such a DECADENT CAPITALIST!!"), of being a "landlord". The "landlord" was then tortured and executed. If [Peasant B] got wind of it and chose to lamb it, any family he left behind would be tortured and executed instead. Communist Russia went through a similar phase with their "kulaks". In either country, it was a fantastic way for one person to sic a lynch mob on anyone they wanted, and show their class warfare cred in the process.

Comment Re:Too many pixels = slooooooow (Score 1) 263

Complete and utter BS.

Truth. Anyone remember this guy?
Bought a bunch of el cheapo 4K televisions for the programmers at his office. Even though the 30hz refresh rate caused horrible mouse lag, they all put up with it. It's not like there was a 4K computer monitor at anywhere near a competitive price.

"I didn't really get it until just now." Four editors side-by-side each with over a hundred lines of code, and enough room to spare for a project navigator, console, and debugger. Enough room to visualize the back-end service code, the HTML template, the style-sheet, the client-side script, and the finished result in a web browser - all at once without one press of Alt-tab.

Comment Re:Procedural Rules? (Score 2) 128

What are they teaching kids in schools these days? Back in my day Gideon's Trumpet was in the curriculum and we went over all the key / formative SCOTUS rulings over the US's history.

I totally don't know. I took civics class in high school in 2008, and a couple weeks were devoted to students researching and presenting information about landmark court cases to the class. I was home sick the day everyone picked their court cases, so I got stuck with a court case I had never heard of and that I knew nobody else wanted: Gideon v. Wainwright.

What luck! I got to watch Gideon's Trumpet during school hours, I read and learned way more about the public defender system than I had time to present, and I was actually just playing hooky the day I stayed home! While everyone else was bitching and moaning about how much they were procrastinating on their presentation, I was lost in this story of a poor old drifter without much book-learnin' showing supreme court justices how shit should get done in America.

I learned some time later that on the day students picked their court cases, fully half of the class demanded to research Miller v. California ("you know, the one about PORNOGRAPHY... tee-hee!"). There was such a stalemate, I think the teacher finally had them draw straws.

Comment Re:The bay area used to have affordable housing (Score 1) 359

As much as your racist mindset would like that to support your conclusion. It simply doesn't. Being 13-14% of the population does not imply being an even distribution within the demographics of the population. If all 75% of that 13-14% is poor (not unreasonable), but only 10% of the white people are poor (also not unreasonable), then that would give you pretty much the exact same number of poor people of either race. The result - an unsurprising 50/50 split in crime rates too.

I don't think it's poverty that leads to crime (West Virginia is poor and has low crime). Rather, I think that surrendering to poverty leads to crime. Joining a gang, dealing drugs, and expecting to get killed or imprisoned for life by age 30 only seems tolerable if you're convinced that there aren't any better options.

But there are better options. Anyone who can borrow or save a few hundred bucks can buy a greyhound ticket to North Dakota. There is an oil boom going on there, right now, with scads of job openings requiring no prior education or skills, with starting salaries around $50,000/year. That's higher than the median household income in the US. Most companies even have barracks on-site for employees who can't find housing. Also, working a bottom-rung service industry job near the oil fields is still pretty lucrative; I hear Walmart cashiers are making $20 an hour in ND!

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If I'd known computer science was going to be like this, I'd never have given up being a rock 'n' roll star. -- G. Hirst