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  • Commented on The Ferguson Question
    What I'm trying to get at is that the police department should be given objectives based on socio-economic indicators such as: x% major/violent crime rate = (translates into) y% loss of house values. Okay - I realize that this could...
  • Commented on The Ferguson Question
    Now onto a bit of a tangent ... Just how much damage does crappy policing (like killing an unarmed teenager) do to the local economy? I don't know that stats, but I would guess based on general media coverage that...
  • Commented on The Ferguson Question
    Some general questions comparing U.S. vs. U.K. police forces ... How much of this is attributable to Sheriffs (heads of police forces) being elected in the U.S., rather than being appointed/promoted? Is there any minimum training requirement for police forces...
  • Commented on Hiatus
    Agree - "It hardly matters what the aliens want. What matters is how much what they want diverges from what Earth's movers and shakers want." We could be an interesting lab experiment, a source of renewable resources, or we might...
  • Commented on Hiatus
    Only if humanity knew that the source of the change was alien/extraterrestrial. We're pretty good at convincing ourselves that we are the authors of our destinies, that we like something that we really don't, etc. Basically we've a history of...
  • Commented on Hiatus
    "The first step would be hiding and gathering information." The web can provide all the info needed, from afar. And as far as getting the finances started - there's ebay, bitcoin, etc. which do not require any physical/fixed geo-presence. Essentially...
  • Commented on Hiatus
    Re: "How would the agents of an alien power infiltrate a more modern space opera setting ...?" Outsourcing all intellectual and artistic endeavors (as well as classic out-source of manufacturing) thereby making the economy completely dependent upon an outside supplier...
  • Commented on Down tools
    Been a while since I last read any of the Merchant Prince series. Do all of the MP worlds/universes have identical geologies? Because access to the right uranium isotope would be necessary to acquire enough nukes to be a threat,...
  • Commented on Message for GISHWHES participants
    ... and the donations breakdown of 15% to Haitian orphans and 51% for flowers randomly distributed to western mega-city inhabitants is noble? Yeah - sure!...
  • Commented on Message for GISHWHES participants
    Just visited a couple of related sites to find out more about the founder and this org. Overall impression is that this is probably a new art-form which I'll call 'behavioral sculpting'(apologies to any real psychologists out there reading this)...
  • Commented on Who Owns SF?
    Good SF explains us to ourselves in terms of the 'other'. Gadgets (social policy) are a useful device but only when they show how an already existing human behavior will be altered/amplified by that gadget (social policy). Just finished Vernor...
  • Commented on Competition Redux!
    Terrific contest, thanks to everyone who contributed - lots of laugh out loud entries, and a few groaners. For next year, how about: 'corporate best practices: firing the client from hell'?...
  • Commented on The Rhesus Chart: Chapter One
    Look forward to reading this latest Laundry Files. Am currently on pg 80 of Neptune's Brood, and didn't expect as many LOLs based on previous books of this series. You do a marvelous job of "technology-goes-splat!" Keep it up!...
  • Commented on YAPC::NA 2014 keynote: Programming Perl in 2034
    From an internet of things, the next step may be making the inanimate into the animate capable of self-monitoring and self-repair. Not nanotechnology, but biology....
  • Commented on Crass commercial interlude
    Can't get this link to open either ......
  • Commented on Crass commercial interlude
    Temporal lobe seizures also account for Dubya's problem with words/word retrieval. http://brain.oxfordjournals.org/content/132/10/2772.full.pdf...
  • Commented on Crass commercial interlude
    My vote re: Dubya is Temporal Lobe Epilepsy ... The dementia that follows strokes (or their equivalent) is not always quickly/easily observed. It over a year to figure out all of the changes in one elderly relative's demeanor following a...
  • Commented on Schroedinger's Kingdom: the Scottish Political Singularity Explained
    Thanks for a modern history lesson, interesting times coming up for Scotland... Opens up a possibility of an independent Scotland engaging in an energy price war vs. Russia, as England would no longer need to treat Scottish energy preferentially (if...
  • Commented on We need a pony. And the moon on a stick. By next Thursday.
    We need a few marine biology/environmental science grad students who need 'just one more paper/project'. If they conducted the same study/analysis at multiple points along this coast line, it would provide good comparative and benchmarking information. Crowd-sourcing might work for...
  • Commented on We need a pony. And the moon on a stick. By next Thursday.
    Someone I know had such a transplant, and I believe that one of the tests used to detect/confirm extent of engraftment was a cheek swab test. Blood work definitely comprised the large majority of tests, but there was also a...
  • Commented on We need a pony. And the moon on a stick. By next Thursday.
    What about the person who's just had a bone marrow/peripheral stem cell transplant and his allogeneic marrow/stem cell donor is on the SS's hit list? Would current gene testing using a cheek swab sample return a 'false positive' ID?...
  • Commented on We need a pony. And the moon on a stick. By next Thursday.
    What you're describing is pretty close to verbatim coding software which has been used by marketing researchers for at least 10 years. There is also software/ algorithms used to analyze speeches by politicians, etc. to assess how emotionally loaded/skewed the...
  • Commented on We need a pony. And the moon on a stick. By next Thursday.
    Hey, I've got it! Monty Python's 'Hungarian Translation Book' mixed in with 'Ministry of Silly Walks'....
  • Commented on We need a pony. And the moon on a stick. By next Thursday.
    A simpler strategy would be to identify individuals who've lost their sense of humor. Simply hire Google to flash random/various jokes on screen with every search, or intermittently*, and if the keyboard detector doesn't register a physical reaction such as...
  • Commented on Amazon: malignant monopoly, or just plain evil?
    Glad to hear that ......
  • Commented on Amazon: malignant monopoly, or just plain evil?
    A few posters mentioned buying their books/e-books on AMZN and I'm curious about how well the e-books law suit settlement is going, from a customer-experience perspective. Specifically, in December 2013, AMZN was ordered to return the $ it overcharged its...
  • Commented on Vacation
    Didn't recall it being that long, so checked Google maps: Orlando-Tallahassee - 257 miles (3.47 hours) along I-75N and I-10W (toll hwy). Still a longish drive but if you overnight there, not too bad. Plus, NHMFL is not your everyday...
  • Commented on Vacation
    Hi Charlie: Info on tours at the MagLab: http://www.magnet.fsu.edu/education/community/tours.html The MagLab is a fascinating place, and we welcome visitors! Read about our tour options below. All visitors touring the lab are required by our safety policy to wear close-toed shoes!...
  • Commented on Vacation
    Probably a long drive for you but Florida State University in Tallahassee might be of interest ... Paul Dirac spent his last years there; Home of the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory (NHMFL), the world's highest powered magnet laboratory; Official...
  • Commented on Vacation
    Hurricane season is on, and there have been reports of really loud military/war exercises in southern Florida. A friend who was on a boating vacation in Florida years ago got a little too close to some naval vessels during a...
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