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Comment Re:DRONE ON (Score 1) 225

So working to reduce our waste volume is the only realistic plan.

Not the only one. Another is to learn how to engineer the climate. Actually, in the long run that will be necessary anyway, because the Earth's climate has significant natural variation, enough that for most of the planet's life-bearing history it's had a climate that we wouldn't like very much. There's also evidence from both Greenland and Antarctic ice core records that the planet occasionally undergoes very rapid spontaneous (i.e. not driven by obvious causes like large volcanic event) climate changes -- faster than the current anthropogenic change. We need to learn how to manage the climate.

Reducing our "accidental" impact will make the job of engineering appropriate deliberate impacts easier, of course.

Comment Re: Lots of children have the wrong DNA. (Score 1) 226

I'll stick with one subsection of this incoherent/trolling wall of text:

Doesn't matter how you claim it.

Claim what?

you should have stuck with leaving the child in foster care

The convicted statutory rapist still has custody, if you put the child in foster care that's kidnapping.

And even then, people will end up being taxed. Somebody ends up paying for it.

And the most appropriate person to do that is the adult who took criminal advantage of a child.

Sorry, but a lot of things aren't free, just try to have a dog, a house or a car.

"Being the victim of a sex crime isn't free"?

Comment Re: Lots of children have the wrong DNA. (Score 1) 226

Admit it would be unfair if the man was raped? Yes, although I doubt that's a very common occurrence.

Jumping out of the bushes and raping him is probably quite rare, though I should mention that that situation is rather rare for women as well. But sex while too drunk or high to consent, or passed out - that might be a bit more common.

But we're getting off the track of the main conversation, this was meant to be a bellwether for our expectations of men. If even the most extreme situations (being too young to legally participate, or even not committing any voluntary act at all) aren't enough to mitigate responsibility, then it's pretty clear that we're not giving men in other situations (lied to about birth control, not told about other possible paternity) a fair hearing.

Or admit it's unfair that women have wombs and men don't? Yes, but only in so far as it's unfair that some people are born smarter, stronger, and more attractive than others. The world isn't fair.

Sure nature is unfair, but that doesn't mean we have to be. Nature sticks women with kids after sex, but lets men walk away, and also give us instincts to try to counteract that imbalance. So we invented induced abortion and birth control, fought to make them legal, and then to make the free. And we also make men pay for dates, pressure them to marry pregnant partners, and now hunt them down after one night stands and even after they're victims of sex crimes. At some point our one-sided re-balancing of the scales will start to make things unfair in the opposite direction, and I think we've passed that.

Comment Re:Cases, not electronics (Score 1) 80

Frankly, computer cases are far less important than the electronics that reside inside them.

I disagree. If that were the case (har har) then a perfectly viable laptop would be a cardboard box with a bunch of great parts haphazardly fixed to the inside. The case and packaging is super important. Many laptops are just shonky heaps of garbage where the case falls apart fast.

With portable electronics, it's ALL about tradeoffs. It needs to be fast enough. It needs to have enough ram. The batterylife has to be long enough. The screen has to be big enough but not too big. It can't be too heavy etc etc etc.

Oh and it had to fit in my budget.

I'd love a laptop in principle with the same grunt as one of those maxed out 1U machines, but not enough that the immense weight and terrible battery life would be worth it.

And I'm too old to put up with a laptop in a crap case.

Comment Re: Lots of children have the wrong DNA. (Score 1) 226

men can make women pregnant

No, if we're staying legal here, men can only offer to have sex with women. He can't make her have sex, he can't make her stop taking birth control, he can't prevent her from getting an abortion.

women can't make men pregnant

But they can make men pay child support, even if he never wanted kids, even if he never consented to sex. Can you at least admit that that isn't fair?

Comment Re: Lots of children have the wrong DNA. (Score 1) 226

Actually, you will find out that underage fathers are not required to pay child support unless they want custody. Then they will be paying after they hi their majority.

So you're correcting me, but then say "they will be paying", which is exactly what I said, so ... you agree? What? Or are you saying that if they don't want custody they don't pay (which is completely incorrect)?

Same with unconscious. That's called rape, you know.

If he's wasn't penetrated it's not rape in the US, nor in the UK. And paternity is strict liability - even if the woman was convicted of sexual assault that wouldn't be good enough. So it might be technically possible to avoid liability, but I haven't come across a case like that, ever, while on the other hand there have been several cases of men held liable for child support after the woman admitted that he never woke up the entire time, so...

You really should stop trying to justify the punishment of the many by false appeals to the victimization of a few when the actual legal details are different.

Who am I trying to punish?

Same problem when the scofflaw deadbeats bemoan the costs, it is a lie, done only for sympathy, not even true. Your credulous endorsement discredits you.

So all men who gripe about child support are lying, child support is always cheap? And repeating facts from actual court cases discredits me?

It's like the people who bewail how a lesbian couple could have a bunch of kids, but one partner not made to pay child support. Not a one of them was willing to admit the lack of samesex marriage was the issue. No, no, they just wanted the man to be persecuted.

Hunh? If a man donates sperm to ANYBODY (gay or straight, married or single-but-in-a-relationship or single-completely-by-themselves) if the messy legal process to avoid legal parenthood isn't followed he still can be held liable. And I don't think we persecute men, we just don't care that much if they get hurt in our rush to support women and children.

Please change your dosage - I'm not qualified to tell if you need more drugs or less - but you've lost contact with the real world.

Comment I suggested training on sims to Alain a decade ago (Score 1) 52

I worked with Alain Kornhauser about thirty years ago, first taking his robotics course as an undergraduate, later managing his robotics lab as an employee, and then again even later (briefly) as a grad student tangentially as part of a group doing self-driving car research focused mainly on a neural networks approach. I had also been hanging around Red Whittaker's group making the first ALVAN (Autonomous Land Vehicle) around 1986 before going back to Princeton to work as an employee.

While I did not contribute much of significance to that self-driving car group (I had other interests), I had suggested we train cars to just drive one specific route based on videos from driving that route a variety of times. I guessed that most daily commutes are just along the same route and so that could be a big win. But he dismissed that idea for some reason I'm still not sure I understand. Still think it made a lot of sense though for the resources we had at the time.

About ten years ago I suggested he get his PAVE students to write software to drive Gran Turismo as a challenge. Not much response from him on that then though. Glad to see his is finally doing that -- although with much better game/simulation software now.

I also suggested he could make PAVE the free and open source software hub for self-driving vehicle software to address some concerns I outlined back in 2001 in the essay to the Markle Foundation:

From the email I sent Alain in 2007-02-02:

"Glad to read of your group's successes with the Grand Challenge. I've long thought a fun project for your students would be to write software that takes visual input from a a PlayStation 2 driving game like "Gran Turismo"
(direct via video out to video capture, or even through a camera focused on a TV) and processes that image to drive the simulation via a USB hookup into the PlayStation. Not quite the real thing (and Red Whittaker might rightfully scoff at that approach as ignoring much of the challenge of making real hardware survive in a tough environment :-) , but it is cheap, easy, and safe to do in an undergraduate lab with limited supervision. And the racing game simulators just keep getting more and more realistic. And if that challenge becomes too easy, you can then add noise to the video signal to make it harder... Or introduce lags or noise in the USB steering. And then start working on controlling ATV Off Road Fury or the the Snowmobile racing games, and so on. Or have kids write software to control one game and then give them only one day to make it work for another... Probably lots of good science and engineering and education to do there on a (relatively) small budget."

I mentioned that idea again to him in 2011-06-18 when I was looking for jobs:

"Or maybe you need someone to do more work on cars that drive themselves, which sounds like more fun? :-) Except that PAVE stuff is all student run, and good for that approach, so I can see you probably won't need someone for that. I still feel getting students interested in writing open source software to process images from the latest driving simulator games is a good (safe) project that might advance the state-of-the-art in automotive intelligence in a very positive way. :-) I'm sure it would at lead to lots of funny press though ("Students at Princeton are seriously playing with video games", and so on). Whether that is good or bad depends on your point of view, perhaps."

Anyway, glad to see that idea finally getting some traction. :-)

While he did not take some of my ideas that seriously, I did not take his idea of the self-driving car stuff that seriously myself back then. Not that I objected to it -- I just did not see the urgency for it and was more interested in robot manipulation (being a fan of the "Silent Running" drones).

But Alain saw the value in self-driving cars decades before most other people. He explained how they could save lives by being safer -- as well as reduce expenses and reduce pollution by being more efficient.

Alain is a brilliant guy and a nice person too (they don't always go together) -- wish I had made more of my time working with him. Looking back on it, I think, wow, what if I had just been excited to do a project to make a self-driving golf-card for the Princeton campus for alumni or for the annual P-rade? That would have been a great place to start and I'm sure we could have been successful enough on a limited scale with a limited budget to move onto grander things.

Back in my early 20s I just did not appreciate what a great opportunity working with him was. Working with him as an employee for a year in his robotics lab was where I learned so much about 3D graphics which made it possible to write a garden simulator and also PlantStudio software (for breeding 3D botanical plants). Best job working for someone else I ever had. Thanks Alain!

Comment Re: Lots of children have the wrong DNA. (Score 1) 226

Kindly point out where I was defending it.

Without some clear distancing language (e.g. the legislature thought that...) one can't tell the difference between a mere statement of fact and an endorsement - English is funny that way. That's why I kept saying 'you seem to be suggesting' - I want you to make your position clearer.

I stated how it came about, to the best of my knowledge.

And I'm trying to point out that men leaving their wives and children on a whim was never a large fraction of divorces, but it did make a good boogyman. Or to use your terminology, there are probably more sluts than dicks (or maybe roughly the same number), but for some reason legally we not only favor sluts but are also willing to disfavor all men for the actions of the dicks.

Comment Re:The problem is depth perception (Score 1) 52

Your eyes are far better at matching light frequencies between both eyes to get the depth mapping correct. Your standard camera can only distinguish 24 bits of light frequency. At that level you get somewhat of a depth map but not a very good one.

Waymo uses LIDAR, not visual light cameras. It gets an extremely accurate depth map, far more accurate than any human could, because LIDAR measures the time it takes light to reach the "seen" object and bounce back to the receptor.

In a 3D mapped world, all the depth information is 100% accurate.

Which is only slightly better than LIDAR-derived depth information.

Comment Re: Lots of children have the wrong DNA. (Score 3, Informative) 226

This occurred because the men were suddenly free from the expenses of the family, whereas the women were forced to take on the financial burden of raising the children.

Exactly, this is after men no longer had default custody of the children after a divorce and people were trying to put financial responsibility back on his shoulders. I'm sorry if my extremely brief overview missed some of the twists and turns between the old common-law system and the one we have today.

But how is this a defense of ' "real fathers" were only too willing to abandon their families'? The fact you quoted was true no matter who initiated the divorce or for what reason.

And again, you seem to be suggesting that the bad behavior of those men justified the unfairness to all men. I'm suggesting that the number of 'dad abandons family on a whim' phenomena was blown out of proportion by the unfortunate victims of those cases, bigots, and people who saw a political advantage to be gained, and that even if it was true it wouldn't justify a wholesale shift in legal responsibility.

the father almost always profited and the mother almost always became impoverished

And the mother almost always got to raise the children and the father did not. I agree that both were unfair, but at least they weren't both unfair in the same direction, as they are tending toward now.

Comment Re: Lots of children have the wrong DNA. (Score 3, Interesting) 226

The legal system for child support came about because plenty of "real fathers" were only too willing to abandon their families when the going got rough or a more winsome piece of ass drifted on by.

What revisionist twaddle. Child support after a divorce came about because originally fathers kept the children and got both the benefits of custody and the responsibility to support them. Then we decided that children belong with their mothers, but financial responsibility should stay with the fathers.

The 'deadbeat dad' narrative came about as a way to defend this clearly unfair system, and the fact the fathers (quite reasonably) feel more responsible for children that they are allowed to be the fathers of, rather than kids they aren't allowed to see.

The problem the GP describes, with cuckolds paying child support for kids that aren't theirs, stems from the same sexist urge. In most cases a DNA test can only give a man responsibility (even if they were underage and she wasn't, even if he was unconscious) but not remove it (he was married to her at the time and waited until the child was six months old, he 'acted like a father').

And as a side note, it's incredibly crass of you to try to justify the ill treatment of some men by pointing out the bad behavior of other men.

Comment Re: Becaue you aren't offering to do the work. (Score 2) 358

That's unfair. Blender did undergo some big changes, but they were more than justified. It's not like they're just continuously changing it, or that the changes weren't warranted. I think Blender is a better tool today because of their changes.

I have much more of an issue with GIMP. Pushing forth changes that the vast majority of the userbase hated (and railed against on the forum), and got a big "FU, if you don't like it, use another tool" response from the developers. Comments on the "can only save XCF through the save menu, changes to other formats pester you about "unsaved changes" even if you do export" design change were over 10:1 against. The brush size slider is a mess. Text editing is broken in about ten different ways, from it forgetting what font size you're typing in to not rendering full text deletion in some cases. The general quality has gone way downhill. Meanwhile, things that have supposedly been "in the works" for years, like higher bit-depth colour, seem further away than ever. Even if I didn't want to export to a higher bit depth, if I want to do a gaussian blur on a high-res image I need to do a combination of dithers and blurs because of the loss of precision at 8 bits per channel.

Facebook is the classic example of terrible product evolution (particularly Messenger... have these people never heard of the concept of screen real estate?). I'd also like to zing Google for Google Maps. Today it's way slower, they took the very convenient full-length zoom bar out (and only put the tiny one in after user complaints), buttons with similar functionality are scattered out (e.g. satellite is on the bottom left, but landscape hidden in the menu top left), photo integration is terrible (no longer shows photos where they actually are, but in a giant "bar" on the bottom of the screen, opened by an ambiguous icon that looks like three different buttons, with lines that point to the map seemingly at random), make you zoom in twice as far to see the same amount of map information (ex. road labels), added icons to the upper right that have no connection to Maps at all just for "product consistency", and so on. And it's 2017, why is their landscape option still so terrible? Even little local companies' map services have vastly superior landscapes.

Comment Re: Electric, or Jet? (Score 1) 156

Actually... I knew exactly what he meant.

I think the person being pedantic is you. He might being imprecise. I think you are the one who's being ostentatious about your learning or overly concerned with minute details or formalisms.



ostentatious in one's learning.
overly concerned with minute details or formalisms, especially in teaching.

Comment Re:This is meaningless..... (Score 1) 356

Seriously, that's the best you have, a case from over a decade and a half ago? No country is perfect, but when you have to reach back sixteen years to find something to damn them for., you're really stretching.

World Justice Project (which uses a peer-reviewed methodology to rank judicial systems from around the world; there are over 17 experts just for Sweden alone) ranks Sweden the best in the world in terms of fundamental rights. Their biggest weakness in the rankings? Letting criminals off too easily. But never mind that, because there was a single incident sixteen years ago involving two people who had no legal right to be in the country (versus Assange who has no legal right to *not* be in the country) and who had been misidentified as convicted terrorists being extradited, that means that the whole country is evil and corrupt and just loves to extradite people, right?

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