Dave Lester

Dave Lester

  • Commented on A bright and shiny hell
    Greg asks: "Are Farage & his friends indirectky or directly in Moscow/Putin's pay, then,as part of the new Fascist International? After F's antics recently, I wouldn't be surprised" Bearing in mind Charlie's imprecation here's what's known. Source 1: https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2017/apr/02/arron-banks-interview-brexit-ukip-far-right-trump-putin-russia Quote...
  • Commented on A reminder
    Yep, all set. Hotel near Gare Central booked, but no indication of the [bleep, bleep, deleted] Eurostar tickets. Damn, am I going to need some luck. Still to return to topic -- and after a day annoying them on the...
  • Commented on A reminder
    Dear Charlie and Philippa, Apologies for any offence. I'm probably just a bit anxious about appearing in front of the MEPs for STOA tomorrow in Brussels....
  • Commented on A reminder
    Dear Philippa, Precisely because we have FPTP here in England, we have had plural similar parties since at least the 1620s. But there is still plurality, and that's probably more important than the precise theology they espouse....
  • Commented on A reminder
    Charlie, Thanks for this bone to chew over! To me the defining feature of Fascism -- at least the Italian version -- is the mixture or intermingling of business and single-party politics. Anything else is optionally extra. Business meets politics...
  • Commented on Sometimes I don't know why I bother!
    Of course most of us have ignored Mr Stross' second point: ".. and write a scenario involving your heros". So, how about a Laundry prequel -- interwoven with a current story, as was The Fuller Memorandum. In 1937 Heinrich Harrer...
  • Commented on Sometimes I don't know why I bother!
    Nick writes: You get three columns of being parachuted behind enemy lines, being interrogated and bluffing their way out of it, blowing things up, having love affairs with all and sundry and then a short paragraph where they married their...
  • Commented on Sometimes I don't know why I bother!
    Another oddity from Burma is Walter Fletcher (nee Walter Fleischl von Marxow) ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walter_Fletcher_(politician) ). His war service in Burma as part of Force 136 included: "In Operation Remorse, a businessman named Walter Fletcher carried out covert economic operations such...
  • Commented on Sometimes I don't know why I bother!
    Two suggestions: Orde Wingate ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orde_Wingate ). "Men I expect you are wondering why I am here on parade this morning wearing just an alarm clock on a string?" And one I met: Daphne Park ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daphne_Park ). Somerville College...
  • Commented on Sad Trombone Exoplanet Reality Check
    Charlie, You may find my comments on the last blog entry permit you to minimize the changes you envisage to your latest manuscript....
  • Commented on Reality is broken
    Charlie, You're the story teller, but I'm not sure your description of David Cameron and the COBRA meeting in the Nightmare Stacks rings true. So be very careful how you re-write! The thing to understand about Old Etonians is that...
  • Commented on The iron law of development
    Greg writes: There is a definite anti-French bias here. OK, so why, then ( apart from US "war of independence" when everyone ganged up on the UK ) did the French lose every time? And why were the RA better...
  • Commented on A plaintive request
    So, some good news, .. .. anything scientific! (1) Anything with gravity waves. (2) CERN's quadruple quark particles. (3) Binary neutron stars and their EoS: http://www3.mpifr-bonn.mpg.de/staff/pfreire/NS_masses.html (4) Henry's cell paper: http://www.cell.com/abstract/S0092-8674(15)01191-5...
  • Commented on CASE NIGHTMARE BLOND
    Charlie writes: All I know is, I need to have an end in sight for the story of Bob vs. Lovecraft, lest I despair. Have you guys got any idea how hard it is to plan and write roughly two...
  • Commented on CASE NIGHTMARE BLOND
    (Warning: I know many of the "players" in this little drama, personally: Boris, Dave, Petsy, ..) Excerpt from "Boris Johnson's Diary (age 52 and a bit)" Thursday 14 July. Met the senior FCO people today. Most seemed reliable and competent,...
  • Commented on The Nightmare Stacks: US Launch
    THE DELIRIUM BRIEF(s?) spoiler alert Graham writes: For those interested in more Alex and Cassie, I did notice the line early on: "Cassie, if you ever read this, I'm very, very sorry". And Alex is clearly writing this in past...
  • Commented on Competition Time!
    I noticed a number of other similar ideas on skimming through the list, so I don't claim this as entirely original, but what you might want is a "magic masking" app. I've been thinking along the lines of using an...
  • Commented on The Ultimate Tech Frontier: Your Brain
    Whoops, I missed the final two paragraphs of Alex's questions. Alex writes: "Any citations to results so far, showing that the approach taken is generating insights?" My focus at the moment is to get the software tools up to scratch....
  • Commented on The Ultimate Tech Frontier: Your Brain
    Alex writes: "Do I understand this correctly. The SpiNNaker architecture allows massively parallel processing but with low power consumption. The software allows you to program the characteristics of each neuron and synapse. Together this should provide fidelity and reasonable run...
  • Commented on The Ultimate Tech Frontier: Your Brain
    Catina writes: "Do you make a distinction between visual memory (actual visualization) and non-visual memory (associative language / descriptive) in your simulations?" OK. It's early days (I smiled at the idea we are in the DOS age: I can remember...
  • Commented on The Ultimate Tech Frontier: Your Brain
    Alex writes: On reflection, if we use Kanerva's "Sparse Distributed Memory" approach for memory storage, even hippocampal interfaces might be sufficiently recoverable despite plasticity. It is slow when implemented in software, but the new chips simulating neurons might change that....
  • Commented on The Ultimate Tech Frontier: Your Brain
    Ramez, I'm a neuromorphic engineer working on the Human Brain Project (and am a non-voting supernumerary member of its Board of Directors). The issue with encoding is that in very few areas do we get to see the inputs and...
  • Commented on Inverted realities
    My own favourite is: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tunicate "The sea squirt that eats its own brain". Oh, the things you learn when you're trying to gross-out the artists in an arts-meets-science event....
  • Commented on On the Great Filter, existential threats, and griefers
    Nice to see Anders Sandberg up at the top: hi Anders, fancy doing some teaching on the Human Brain Project for me? I'm not sure whether its been mentioned already, but the following article from three days ago http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/04/150414101000.htm This...
  • Commented on The referendum question
    Andreas writes: He has a plan. Never assume malice when the same actions can equally well be attributed to incompetence. Andreas, this is not malice: this is practical politics. I have played and lost against David Cameron thirty years ago...
  • Commented on Message for GISHWHES participants
    Greetings me hearties! I am here to tell of the octopus and elephant, Shining in the night. Heart-warming and yet, somehow Wistful. Hail to our ruler, Elizabeth Regina (Mi Sha). For as much as we are all Ordained by God....
  • Commented on Trotskyite singularitarians for Monarchism! A political speculation.
    The question we have been set (as I see it) is: (1) how will we order our political economy? (2) who gets to run our society? Let's take question (2) first... The answer I feel here is summed up by...
  • Commented on Catching a Blighty
    Firstly a big thanks to Guthrie for pointing out the clip that has sparked the furore. As someone who crossed swords with Cameron when we were both students at Oxford, I was very surprised by the reports of what he...
  • Commented on I have a new book cover
    What I'm really looking forward to in a future Laundry book is "Bob meets his political masters" Now, we've been told about the HoL black budget, so maybe the politcos there are not quite the same as HoC -- though...
  • Commented on Do Zimboes dream of Electric Sheep?
    albill writes .. about Dennett. Firstly, I am not a philospher, I just get to subject their theorizing to scientific scrutiny. The version of philosophical zombies with which I have come into contact the most are those defined in terms...
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