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Comment All the new high end ARM CPUs do (Score 1) 69

My phone (LG G5) supports it because it has a Snapdragon 820. That's great and all, but there aren't a lot of devices out there that are so new. So no real point in Netflix supporting it. They'd need to wait a few years for enough people to replace their hardware with new units.

Comment Also nothing supports it (Score 4, Interesting) 69

I mean the newest devices support it in hardware, but it has to be a very new chip to have H.265 support. The vast majority of devices in use don't. For computers you could do it in software but that isn't ideal, since H.265 decoding is rather heavy so you'd hit the CPU pretty hard, whereas hardware accelerated H.264 would hit it almost not at all. For mobile/embedded devices though it just won't work. Too CPU intensive to do in software, so people need a new device.

Comment Re:Look up laws on booby traps (Score 1) 235

Hence what I said about "overly literal geeks". You think so long as you can find something that you consider to be logically consistent, that'll work and you are out of trouble. I'm telling you that is NOT how it works in a court. They very much take the "reasonable man" approach and factor in intent. Doesn't matter how clever you think you are, what matters is what the law says and how the judge applies it.

Comment Re:This MUST be fake news (Score 1) 235

Why in gawd's name would anyone mass produce such a device? This must be one of those fake news stories we've been hearing so much about.

I can't imagine any legitimate use for such a device, so I assume it would be made illegal as soon as the politicians can get off their duffs.

I'm sure certain companies and government agencies working with very sensitive information or critical infrastructure would find some value in it. You can disable USB in software or fill the ports with hot glue gun glue, but both can be undone/worked around. There may be other, better methods to secure the USB ports, but there are definitely some legitimate uses for such a device.

Comment Look up laws on booby traps (Score 5, Insightful) 235

I doubt they'd have a hard time stretching it to over something like this. If you have a device who's only purpose is to destroy something and it goes and destroys something, well you are pretty likely to get in trouble for it.

Remember courts aren't operated by overly literal geeks who think if they can find some explanation, no matter how outlandish or unlikely, it'll be accepted. The law bases a lot around what is reasonable, and around intent. So your attempt at being cute won't work, and you'll be off to jail.

It also may very well be illegal just to have, or be made illegal if not. There are devices that are outlawed purely because they have no legit use. Many states ban burglary tools, which can include things like the cracked ceramic piece of a spark plug (the aluminum oxide ceramic breaks tempered glass easily). If they catch you and can prove intent, then you are in trouble just for having them with the intent to use them illegally.

Oh and don't think they have to read your mind or get a confession to prove intent. They usually just have to show that the circumstances surrounding the situation are enough to lead a reasonable person to believe that you were going to commit a crime.

And a post like this, would count for sure.

Comment These idiots are going to get sued (Score 4, Informative) 235

The problem with a device like this is it is hard to find a substantial legitimate use for it. Given that, they are likely to be targeted for a lawsuit and they are likely to lose that suit.

While it is perfectly ok to sell a device that gets used to commit crimes, you generally have to have a legit reason to be selling it and it can't be something that is totally made up that nobody actually believes. So for example while a crowbar can certainly be used to break in to a house to or attack someone, they are also widely used used to get nails out of things and pry stuck objects apart. As an opposed example a number of companies that sell devices to help you cheat on urine tests have gotten in trouble since their devices had no use other than said cheating.

It is very, very hard to think of a legit use for this and I can't imagine they'll get many legit sales. So it'll probably get them in legal trouble.

Comment Even ones that are tested can have problems (Score 1) 118

I bought an Anker USB C-C cable. I got an LG phone with C, and Qualcomm quick charging on it so I needed some new adapters to be able to charge it at full speed. Gout a couple of adapters, and couple of A-C cables and then said "why not?" and got a C-C cable too. No use for it yet, but I figured I'd get it since I'm sure my next laptop will have C on it.

A few weeks later, Anker sent me a recall notice. Apparently there was a problem in the cables that could cause issues with high power use cases so they gave me my money back and promised a replacement when available.

The issue was actually apparently in the ICs on the cable. Yes that's right, the cables have to have controllers on them too since they have to communicate what kind of power they can handle.

It is likely to be a problem for some time. The good news is A-C cables aren't such an issue since A supports much lower voltages and currents (can only go up to 12v and and like 2.5a) so they don't have to be as insulated and don't need as much protection (apparently a resistor on them does the trick) but still. The C-C stuff though, it will be an issue.

Comment Re:That's not even all (Score 1) 300

Odd things happen, such as Chernobyl and Fukushima, yes.

Well, let's be honest: neither of those incidents were odd or unforeseeable. In the case of Chernobyl, we had an experimental reactor (and I don't mean it was new - I mean it was specifically built for them to screw around with and see what happens) designed with a highly positive void coefficient. It was an insane design that was not passively safe and it was purposely operated in a reckless manner. The "accident" that took that place down happened when they shut off the already limited safety features and ran more experiments. Keep doing that over and over in a design that isn't passively safe and you almost can't help but have it end in disaster. If nothing else, any rational person could easily see that what they were doing was dangerous as Hell. And the Soviets knew what they were doing was dangerous as Hell which is why they did it there and not next to, say, Moscow for instance.

In the case of Fukushima, the plant design's manufacturer (GE) identified design flaws in the plant's containment measures back in the 1970s. And they came up with a remediation plan and published it to everyone running that design. In the 1970s. And the company operating the plant at Fukushima chose not to do what GE told them they needed to do in order to ensure containment in the event of a catastrophic failure. And the regulators in charge of ensuring the plant was operated safely allowed them to do that. So the plant ran for decades with a known design problem and nobody did anything about it. So again, this wasn't exactly a surprise that as soon as something went wrong, bad stuff happened.

Ain't no magic here: if you run known-unsafe designs, you're risking bad things happening. If you run safe designs, then catastrophic failures do not (and, physically, cannot) result in catastrophic consequences.

Comment Re:Shrooms, too. (Score 2) 148

From what I understood, it was indeed promising but it never went beyond that. The problem with psychedelics is that while we did have some very good results, it was too unpredictable. You talk about non-scientists but there is nothing scientists hate more than unpredictability. When a psychiatrist gives a drug to a patient, he wants to know the effects beforehand, he wants to know how things can go wrong, what to do next, etc.. You can't have it with LSD. I don't think we went passed the point of throwing it at a patient and see how it sticks.

One of the last potential use of psychedelics is for treating cluster headaches. A benign but extremely painful condition. Interestingly, the most effective treatments are all hit-or-miss repurposed drugs, psychedelics are of these.

Every drug has potential side effects and some level of unpredictability. If you were to measure the negative side effects and the benefits of commercial prescription antidepressants and mood disorder drugs, the net gain is very small or even negative in some cases. Some antidepressants on the market actually perform worse than a placebo. That's not a particularly high bar for these drugs to clear.

The only reason these drugs weren't fully researched is because they were made very difficult to study, both by regulation and by the social stigma / loss of reputation that anyone trying to study them would have to endure.

Comment Re:Why would this concern Trump? (Score 2) 184

He campaigned on a platform of isolationism. Why would he care if two countries on the other side of the world are hacking each other?

Not just that, unlike previous Republican administrations, he takes a dim view of all of Islam: he doesn't view Sunnis as better than Shias or vice versa or any of that. His whole stance of allying w/ the Russians in Syria is based on that: that militias that are financed by the Saudis, Turks or Qatar are just not reliable at best, and Jihadists at worst. That's why he's taken a position that's completely heterodox to the Republicans, if not downright heretical.

On Iran, what he has to do is pull the plug on that deal, and make it clear to Iran's trading partners that they can choose to trade either w/ the US or Iran, but not both. If European countries are so enamored w/ trading w/ Iran, that's fine: just don't expect to do any business w/ the US.

But as far as the Saudis go, we have no dog in the fight b/w Iran and Saudi Arabia. Both are our enemies, and the 2 of them fighting each other is an alien vs predator situation, to paraphrase Debbie Schlussel. Or like the 2 cats of Kilkinney. If they can fight each other and wipe each other out, then praise be to allah - nothing like it!

Wars have a habit of spilling their effects across borders. For a time, I was reading every day's front page of the Canberra Times starting in October 1938. The problem of international refugees appeared again and again, and I had to stop in February 1939 because I got busy with work. The war had only just begun at that point.

65 million people were displaced at the end of 2015. This problem is not just Saudi Arabia and Iran's problem. A lot of the costs of their "not so cold" war are externalized onto other nations.

Comment If you do business in the US, the IRS gets to peek (Score 1) 203

You find it is true of most nations, actually. If you are playing with finances in their borders, their tax agencies get to have a look at what is going on. Doesn't matter if you are a citizen or not. There can be tax implications even if you are't a citizen but regardless they want to see what is going on.

I mean look at the FIFA guys who got brought down by the US: It happened because they were doing shit with US currency and US banking. That is why the US took an interest and has legal standing.

Comment Re:Shrooms, too. (Score 2) 148

Research into cannabis, MDMA, LSD, etc was the most promising area of psychiatric research in the 1950s. A mental health revolution was on the horizon until a bunch of non-scientists got involved and shut the whole thing down.

Comment Re:"Willing to"??? (Score 1) 130

I don't even keep location services turned on except when I need to use my phone as a GPS, never mind allow any apps to access it. Why the hell would I want to share my location with Uber? Oh, right - "Location data could also be used to provide new channels of revenue for the digital platform. This could include serving ads of local businesses". Yeah, kindly fuck right off, Uber.

Uber may be playing shenanigans but other companies can potentially do useful things with that data. As an example, Pandora seems to play certain songs depending on my location or time of day. I have noticed that John O`Callaghan's "Big Sky" seems to play much more frequently around sunset. Driving home from the airport after a business trip almost guarantees a play of Gareth Emery's "Long Way Home". I have no evidence that Pandora is actually changing the songs played based on location or time of day, but it would not surprise me.

The ads on Pandora don't seem to change much, if at all, based on my location.

Comment Re:TV BS (Score 2, Insightful) 219

I hate to break it to you, but in reality (you know, as opposed to the microcephalic mentality you mistake for "real life") there are far more gay people, people of different ethnic backgrounds, and transgendered people, than are shown even now on TV.

...Actually, I lie. I don't hate to break it to you at all. Rubbing bigots' noses in their blindness and their bullshit is hilarious. Sweet, sweet schadenfreude...

Comment Re:Fair, but they have to decide what instead (Score 1) 300

You might want to try and spend a little more time considering your responses and a little less time getting all worked up, it'll help you make points more cognizant and likely to persuade.

First off I didn't post AC so... not sure what you are going for there.

That aside, when you start talking about nuclear power as "Kablooey power" you are more or less saying "ignore my opinion, I have a childlike view on this." Making up silly names does nothing to make your point, it doesn't convince me you have a valid view, it says to me your view is based on fear and a lack of understanding, not on a carefully considered weighing of the evidence.

So given that, I'm not going to waste more time trying to convince you since it won't work, logical appeals to people with an emotional position don't succeed. I'm just going to suggest that you might want to chill out, spend some time reading what you are responding to, and argue based on logic, not on emotion. You'll win more converts that way.

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