Nile

Nile

  • Commented on Introducing Dead Lies Dreaming
    The best bang-per-buck with the lowest risk of apocalyptic retaliation against Iran is to destabilise The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. A servile revolt in any Arabian city - including the Emirates - would do it. So, too, would targeted assassinations...
  • Commented on Introducing Dead Lies Dreaming
    Successive Republican Presidents have installed a highly effective passive defence against assassination: the automatic succession of the Presidency to dangerously-stupid or psychopathic Vice-president. The Ayatollah and the Revolutionary Council do *not* want Mike Pence in the White House. For the...
  • Commented on Artificial Intelligence: Threat or Menace?
    Am rather intrigued by the rarely unmentioned 4) unknown/knowns I like that observation! However, I define it differently: "Things that we know, but don't realise we know" Consider that an (almost) all-white, all-male, all Oxford-educated upper caste of First...
  • Commented on Artificial Intelligence: Threat or Menace?
    The right to human appeal of an algorithmic decision is baked-in to European law, in a directive - the General Data Protection Regulation - which every member state has enacted in domestic law. Someone was thinking ahead, when that provision...
  • Commented on CASE NIGHTMARE BLONDE, Part 2
    A point about the markets: it costs money to maintain shorts and derivatives positions, and the possibility of an extension could be quite expensive to the members of the ERG who are reputed to be betting against Sterling and the...
  • Commented on CASE NIGHTMARE BLONDE, Part 2
    None of the uncertainties of Brexit have been resolved by yesterday's vote in Westminster. The proximate uncertainty - will Parliament reject the latest bad deal and precipitate Hard Brexit? - has been kicked down the street as far as possible:...
  • Commented on Normal service will be resumed eventually
    My condolences: and yes, it does take time....
  • Commented on Upcoming events
    Oh dear, I have 90 minutes from my flight's arrival at Dublin, to get to the start of the Writing Robot & Non-human intelligence panel......
  • Commented on Whoops Apocalypse!
    A mental exercise: list the various parties in the Gulf and ask which war each of them wants. The Kingdom wants someone else to prosecute a war if annihilation against Iran, with just enough of a role for the some...
  • Commented on Whoops Apocalypse!
    Consider Farage welcoming the riots, and knowing damn well that the Thin Blue Line of the Police won't hold, and that the Joint Chiefs won't play ball with his blustering demands to 'get tough'. Exactly as he expected. He doesn't...
  • Commented on Ask me anything!
    What, ask *anything*? Without necessarily naming names, what is the most bizarre or disturbing vice (or fact of reproductive biology) that you have discovered about the luminary geniuses who lead or nation?...
  • Commented on Story time!
    Sometimes, there is a side to my geekiness that's a bit "you're not very nice at all, are you?"... "...the Alan Moore electric chair diorama" Can you imagine how much fun it would be to do ALL THAT HAIR for...
  • Commented on Peak Brexit
    How did the Tory party become so inept? In general terms - the force of history, if you will - you're right. But there are specific problems in the selection of MP's in play, some of which apply to the...
  • Commented on Do my Homework
    Kim Stanley Robinson touches on the societal impacts of effective longevity treatments (but not rejuvenation - you have to get them young and keep taking them to stay youthful) in second and third books of the Mars trilogy. I say...
  • Commented on Do my Homework
    Michael Grosberg has an interesting idea in changing your personality traits... Consider the obvious commercial value of becoming a sociopath, and start to worry. Luckily, we already have enough of them, they are in charge, and they don't want any...
  • Commented on Happy 21st Century!
    If your employer has continued to function, however minimally, through the 50-70% outages, then you have something to teach us all about resilience. There are organisations that do: some of them operate on a small set of skills and can...
  • Commented on Happy 21st Century!
    And *that* is where it gets interesting... Banks and tech companies actively seek out graduates with no family commitments, and cultivate socipathic traits among those who progress to management. This is one of the reasons why. The next question is:...
  • Commented on Happy 21st Century!
    There's a warning signal for viral or disease-based population-control programmes: 'key man' insurance, and HR key personnel dependency risk mitigation software. Back in the late 1990's,in the middle of the Y2K work, the London bank I was working in got...
  • Commented on GDPR compliance notice
    Thanks Charlie - I am a big fan of GDPR, and you may well have supplied a model GDPR declaration. There are *intended* consequences to the new laws, and one of them is that website owners are being forced to...
  • Commented on Not dead but dreaming
    Looted artifacts from Iraq... There's a worrying legal exposure there: it's very difficult to prove that you haven't traded with ISIS, or other organisations on terrorism-related blacklists, or named individuals subject to sanctions. It's impossible to prove that you didn't...
  • Commented on Test Case
    You *do* realise that you've made a compelling economic case for granting legal 'personhood' to autonomous vehicles? A lightly-customised chatbot script would suffice for providing answers to a narrow range of questions asked in court... ... And then *all* liability...
  • Commented on The Nakamoto Variations
    Ask me where the state of the art is at, in money Laundering these days, over a pint in Harrogate. Naturally, my answer will be nothing more than ill-informed speculation and trading-floor gossip. Interesting gossip, nonetheless; and the world has...
  • Commented on New publication dates (and audiobook news)
    "The best options for the author are either a hardcover sold in publication week through a small bookstore (not a chain), or an ebook sold at full price shortly after publication." So: for the avoidance of doubt, ordering the hardback...
  • Commented on The crazy years
    It seems clear that News is broken, in many different ways; and the social media citizen journalism that was going to supersede it has *been* brokeen, quite deliberately, by organised armies of trash-posters, augmented by bots. The bots were an...
  • Commented on Burn The Programmer!
    Indeed it was my point! Other definitions exist, all of them repellent. You've raised a couple of interesting points of your own: one of them being that top-level programmers don't have a rigorous understanding of software or hardware. If...
  • Commented on Burn The Programmer!
    Indeed it was my point! Other definitions exist, all of them repellent. You've raised a couple of interesting points of your own: one of them being that top-level programmers don't have a rigorous understanding of software or hardware. If...
  • Commented on Burn The Programmer!
    How about repurposing a (rightly) little-used word: Copromancer. It is particularly fitting for (say) tactical developers in banks whose primary toolkit is Excel and Visual Basic for Applications. But you could totally use it for web developers, nine levels of...
  • Commented on A bright and shiny hell
    Recognising protesters from video footage, even when their faces are masked... Yes, I've been expecting this. Gait recognition is probably there already. The delay has been in algorithms capable of doing this, and in the need for sufficient training data,...
  • Commented on Trapped in the wrong trouser-leg of time
    The Paris Accords and action to reduce carbon emissions are probably the biggest medium- to long-term effects on the Third World, here....
  • Commented on Unwanted Blogging Vacation
    My condolences, and my sympathies. There is nothing to be offered in platitudes: all the comfort that there is, comes from the work of reassuring the dying - above all, from talking them through the fear and the guilt and...
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