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Comment Re: I think that they are missing the point (Score 1) 210

Even that would be nonsense since muscles weigh more than fat tissue and people that properly exercise are likely to gain muscles and thus weight. For that reason, weight loss is not a meaningful indication of anything except for people that have the physique of a big sea mammal and thus are mostly fat anyway. Proper research should include diet and body fat percentage. Also, in general exercising more without losing much weight is already a big win for the health of most people. Stupid research like this only demotivates them because it fails to include all factors that are relevant to their health.

Comment Re:Increase employment rate? WTF? (Score 3, Interesting) 630

That's your explanation. In my world, basic income is a means of fairly distributing the fruits of our planet amongst its rightful shareholders, the people. While basic income comes in handy as a solution for unemployment resulting from increased automation, simply providing it because we cannot come up with a better solution would be stupid, unfair an unsustainable. We should not do that.

I'd rather turn it around: as the productivity increases, the value of our planet increases and we can expect its rightful shareholders to receive more money. That's exactly the reason basic income is starting to become economically feasible in the first place. However, in order for it to work properly in the long run, it should to a large extent be funded from taxes that directly relate to the use of the planet itself, for example through Land Value Taxes, taxes on the profit of mining and fossil fuel production and taxes on the use of the atmosphere (by dumping crap in it). This approach is fair and sustainable and could actually lead us to the unlimited leisure time utopia we were promised, if needed supported by a bit of helicopter money.

Comment Re:Does it work better than a tree? (Score 1) 195

It's pretty damn difficult to achieve efficiencies as low as photosynthesis in the wild so it probably does. Then again, it's pretty damn difficult to achieve efficiencies as high as photovoltaics so it is very unlikely for this technique to ever match that.

(Note the inevitable consequence: growing crops indoors under photovoltaic powered lamps that emit frequencies that are actually usable for photosynthesis is more energy efficient and sustainable, today already. The future of agriculture is not very pretty: we need to replace our agricultural lands with solar cells and move food production indoors...)

Comment ATM's are unsafe anyway (Score 4, Interesting) 105

Even without this technology, your fingers will leave a heat mark on the ATM keys long enough for a malicious person to take a picture of it with a thermal camera. Therefore, when I use an ATM machine, I always hold my fingers over a subset of keys to warm them up while waiting for the excruciatingly slow computer in the thing to do its job. That probably sufficiently masks the thermal print left by actually entering my PIN. Furthermore, I have developed a habit of pressing on the keypad frame as if pressing a key on the pad to fool lurkers. That would probably also protect against the smartwatch appraoch. It's rather easy to protect against such attacks, just introduce sufficient noise.

Note that most ATM machines allow pressing random keys while they're not ready for input. You might also want to press random keys during that time.

Comment What's the alternative (Score 1) 262

If given the choice between my medical data being on a server in a hospital or whatever managed by a grumpy sysadmin who also needs to take care of peoples desktops or stored on a server that happens not to be in a hospital, managed by people that do only that, I'd go for the cloud hands down.

However, one should be picky about the country and jurisdiction of your cloud. I suggest not to store your medical data on a US server (or a US company server) if you're not in the US.

Fear of the cloud is a bit like fear of flying. "OMG I'M NOT IN CONTROL", totally ignoring reality.

Comment It's futile (Score 1) 301

Not using your real name is futile. It's likely easily extraced from the Facebook dataset, even if you don't have an account, so not having an account is futile too. The question is not whether you have an account, the question is whether your friends and family are going to upload pictures and mail/phone addressbooks that include you. Don't worry, most of them will.

Comment Re:Unfortunate but not unreasonable (Score 1) 91

[quote]Nobody blinks an eye when the EU demands patient records and other 'protected' confidential data being held solely in Europe, but being financial in nature, all of a sudden that's overreaching?[/quote]

The EU does not demand that. The EU demands that information is well-protected (which may in turn mean that you should keep it out of the US). It does not forbid data to leave the EU at all. Turkey does.

[quote]All I can say is if you're a multi-national without the ability to data partition geographically, whatever your business is in, you're just welcoming a pain in the ass now or in the near future.[/quote]

How the hell do you expect that to work? Paypal facilitates international transactions. In order to comply to the approach you're proposing, they would have to keep data about all international transactions in at least two countries. In a world where every country acted like Turkey, there would be no international transactions.

It's not just overreaching; it's ridiculous incompetent idiot behavior.

Comment Re:GM coral (Score 3, Interesting) 145

There's much more going on than "some research". Australia is actively breeding coral that is adapted to future conditions (lower pH, more CO2, higher temperatures) and is planning on releasing the results in the wild. I got this from the documentary about the Great Barrier Reef on Discovery Channel, but this article also describes it:

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It seems that more and more mathematicians are using a new, high level language named "research student".