Matthew Seaman

Matthew Seaman

  • Commented on Busy busy busy
    > If not, then it's ByteMark Hosting, and there's nothing I can do about that (at least, not easily). Cloudflare CDN has a free tier, and the necessary setup is just to transfer a DNS zone to their nameservers --...
  • Commented on What are you reading this summer?
    Just finished the first book in C.J. Cherryh's classic (?) Foreigner series (titled, crazily enough, Foreigner) on the recommendation of a friend. Heh. What a coincidence. I just grabbed half a shelf-full of those myself for bed-time reading. Cherryh's Foreigner...
  • Commented on Cyberpunk 2.0: Political economy, energy, and the future US
    Methanol is also fairly nasty corrosive stuff. And rather toxic. If you want a reasonably safe, fairly non-toxic but high energy-density liquid, well, there are a number of popular choices: * alkanes -- a mix of pentane and hexane is...
  • Commented on We'll all go together when we go
    IIRC the population of what is now England and Wales is estimated to have been something like 4 million during the peak of the Roman Empire. Plague and the departure of the Legions around 400AD cut that by at least...
  • Commented on We'll all go together when we go
    Likely mechanisms for wiping out the human race completely seem to me to need a sequence of unfortunate events. So, something like -- * Global warming impacts agricultural production, leading to increased food prices and local famines in vulnerable parts...
  • Commented on Constitutional crisis ahoy!
    Leadsom is a virtual unknown to me, as admittedly so was Callmedave (who is my MP for my sins...) at the time he became Conservative leader. The difference here is that Callmedave had some time as opposition leader to establish...
  • Commented on Constitutional crisis ahoy!
    Hmmm... Given that the leadership of both of the major political parties seems to be headed for a round of musical chairs, and that none of the available choices is particularly appealing, nor likely to show particularly well at the...
  • Commented on Constitutional crisis ahoy!
    Point of pedantry: while true that Scotland has not had a Queen Elizabeth before the current monarch, she is still Queen Elizabeth II even in Scotland. Apparently the Queen and her advisors get to choose her regnal name and number,...
  • Commented on Cytological Utopia and the rapture of the eukaryotes
    in a future-unbounded cosmos there can only be one first time for everything Unbounded how? If the cosmos contains infinite space -- more than just what we can see in our own light cone -- and our location is nothing...
  • Commented on A purely theoretical dilemma
    Perhaps we are misunderstanding the representatives of the Galactic Federation? Perhaps what they are suggesting is at once more literal and more subtle than we've understood? What, precisely, is a hive mind? Think about actual ant hills or bee hives....
  • Commented on A purely theoretical dilemma
    All your questions are irrelevant. Resistance is futile. Join the Borg and gain access to vast amounts of information and power, or stay out ... and don't get any of it. Uh... if the Galactic Federation is acting to remove...
  • Commented on Follow the money: Apple vs. the FBI
    How is Apple going to become a bank? Or, more likely, lots of banks? I can't see them operating in just the USA when there are all those other countries with money to spend. Do they just set up a...
  • Commented on Towards a taxonomy of cliches in Space Opera
    When ships meet in space - They will always share a common vertical orientation. - Which will have its up-down axis parallel to the rotation axis of any nearby planet. - This will coincide with the direction of the apparent...
  • Commented on The Rules of Magic
    We an also add in, say, Earthsea, which looks rules-driven but isn't. Ask yourself how an infinite language where every drop in the sea has a unique label would work, why the hero has a three-letter true name, and why...
  • Commented on Long range forecast
    "When are we going to see a distinctive British style of Moslem women's headdress?" "Never. Except in countries dominated by single authoritarian sect, there isn't such a thing in any country, though there often is in a single community." That's...
  • Commented on Long range forecast
    America was built on immigration; the American dream -- that anyone could succeed -- attracted a lot of energy and talent into the country. Even the UK has demonstrably benefited from regular infusions of foreign talent for around the last...
  • Commented on Sitrep
    Dang! That porcelain sure is cold....
  • Commented on The cult of justice
    @5: Baristas as the priests of the caffeine religion Suddenly many things about my life have become clear to me. It seems I have been a reformed-orthodox Caffienista of the Tea-drinking variety for some time now. PS. While we may...
  • Commented on On Syria
    Supposing parliament does eventually come down on the side of endorsing action against Syria -- and likewise the French and maybe a few others decide to join in too. How is that going to work? Obviously the Americans don't need...
  • Commented on Marking time, more thoughts
    If no-one has to work for a living, and there isn't that much paid work around anyhow, then presumably most people are going to spend much of their time doing unpaid work. For which the motivations as to what to...
  • Commented on Marking time, more thoughts
    The shift from 'work for a living' to 'basics provided, work for luxuries' sounds has an interesting consequence. It makes the whole concept of pensions pretty much redundant, and the question of demographic time bombs pretty much moot. If a...
  • Commented on The permanent revolution
    That post-enlightenment ideas about democracy, republicanism, equality of opportunity irrespective of birthright are a very recent fad in the course of human history I accept. But the Divine Right of Kings, a rigid class hierarchy headed by a landed aristocracy...
  • Commented on The Anthropic Stupidity Hypothesis
    Tool use -- in particular knives or other cutting tools, and fire -- seems to have been essential to evolution of intelligence in hominids. Basically because knife+fire forms the essence of a kitchen, and cookery as a form of external...
  • Commented on What are the big issues of 2013 going to be?
    Maybe not in 2013, but soon: H5N1 flu finally crosses the species boundary, probably in a rural part of Africa or S.E. Asia, but spreading rapidly to nearby population centers and within weeks to all continents (even Antarctica). Global Flu...
  • Commented on Happy Christmas! Here is a flame war in a can
    There's one huge difference between the early Christian church and the putative early Osamanians. Back in the 1st century AD, they didn't have TV or film or Internet. They didn't even have printing presses. And although Jesus' life and teachings...
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