Geoff Hart

Geoff Hart

  • Commented on Are VR esports going to become a thing?
    Icehawk noted: "Muscle Memory can definitely be a trap." Indeed, and in ways you might not expect. Two police officers from different forces told me that when officers train in the gym or dojo to disarm someone, they are now...
  • Commented on Burn The Programmer!
    Heteromeles wondered: "Why do you worry about voting machine tampering?" Because the machines are becoming more common and popular, and (so far as I can tell from what's been written) seem to be easily hackable without leaving any audit trail....
  • Commented on Burn The Programmer!
    Elderly Cynic suggested that the notion of corporate sock puppets voting might not be so bad. In the end, it comes down to details of the specific election. Elections are sometimes won by a margin of only a few thousand...
  • Commented on Burn The Programmer!
    Thanks to those who pointed out the problem of registering myriads of virtual corporations purely for the sake of using them to vote. Yup, that's a big problem... so big I completely missed it....
  • Commented on Are VR esports going to become a thing?
    Robert Prior noted the importance of muscle memory. Yes! Thanks very much for that insight. It makes very good sense. I still have muscle memory of some of my aikido kata, and remember how well muscle memory worked for steering...
  • Commented on Burn The Programmer!
    I'm not convinced that letting corporations vote would be a significant problem for democracy. After all, a typical large corporation (i.e., the scary kind) has thousands to hundred thousands of employees. One vote for the corporation would be a drop...
  • Commented on Are VR esports going to become a thing?
    Martin noted: "Mass wins - which is why any nine-stone policewoman facing down a fifteen stone aggressive drunk needs a baton or an asp" Not necessarily, and not even most of the time. A well-aimed blow to the throat will...
  • Commented on Are VR esports going to become a thing?
    Martin noted an important difference in how people see "competition": some see it as a way to improve their performance, but others are only interested in winning. I don't think this is necessarily a UK vs. North American difference, but...
  • Commented on Are VR esports going to become a thing?
    As the original poster who suggested that the risk of injury was significant, it seems worthwhile reiterating that point but with considerably more nuance. If you look at how the Star Trek holodeck works, or consider other examples such as...
  • Commented on Burn The Programmer!
    It's helpful to step back and reconsider the original purposes of "limited liability" in the context of corporations: it was emphatically not intended to protect criminals. The goal was (as others have noted) to create a convenient legal framework to...
  • Commented on Burn The Programmer!
    Martin noted that my comment about "professional" training of programmers kinda missed the mark: "that's a touch cruel to those of us who regard ourselves as "software engineers"... you know, degree-qualified, trained and experiences, full membership of a professional institution."...
  • Commented on Burn The Programmer!
    _Moz_ noted: "Some programmer should be burnt. At the stake, preferably, before we all get burned by their code." Heh. Reboot the Salem witch trials, and let the smoke of burning programmers encourage the survivors to be more virtuous! *G*...
  • Commented on From Here To The Holodeck
    Philippa Cowderoy noted: "I sometimes hear people talk about VR e-sports, and I have to admit I really don't think that's going to work well" Not very well indeed. If you consider the frequency of IRL injury among aging jocks...
  • Commented on From Here To The Holodeck
    Great description of the state of the art! I think my only real quibble would be the notion that VR needs to support walking around and other forms of movement. That's a specific subclass of VR -- or perhaps a...
  • Commented on Burn The Programmer!
    Gasdive mentioned the "Pauli effect": I offer two bits of anecdata for your edification and amusement: First, one of my colleagues way back when I worked for the feds. The guys in the electronics lab told me they had to...
  • Commented on Burn The Programmer!
    Troutwaxer "And there's the phrase "Wave a dead chicken over it," which has always amused me." Back when I worked for the feds, we had a Xerox photocopier that I nicknamed "the Antichrist"; the name stuck, much to the annoyance...
  • Commented on Burn The Programmer!
    General note first, then specific comment: One thing to be cautious about in this discussion is how you're defining "magic". There are so many forms ("real" magic vs. what appears in literature, magic as technology, magic as science, magic as...
  • Commented on Burn The Programmer!
    Hugh noted: "None of what I describe sounds like the consumer tech that I use." Among other things, because there's no "low terror mode". Speaking as someone who's been using computers for close to 40 years, who's studied programming (just...
  • Commented on Crib Notes: Empire Games
    Charlie noted: "Sorry, but this is not, ahem, a new problem for me. Hint: what latitude do I live at? What are my sunrise/sunset times today?" I really do get that most people who suffer from a condition have researched...
  • Commented on Crib Notes: Empire Games
    Side note re. seasonal affective disorder (SAD): Both my wife and my BFF have had lots of success with "SAD lights". There's some clinical evidence that this kind of phototherapy works*, so I suspect it's not just a placebo effect...
  • Commented on Bread and Circuses (circumlunar version)
    Sabik noted: "the expertise needed to implement that design no longer exists in any one place; the requisite number of engineers would have to come up to speed, to a level of knowledge not much short of designing from scratch....
  • Commented on Bread and Circuses (circumlunar version)
    (Rejoining the fray after 2 weeks in Japan...) Very plausible prediction. The question is whether the anti-science faction in the U.S. manages to persuade the administration that the world is really flat, and that the moon landing really was faked--in...
  • Commented on Houston: what are the long-term consequences?
    A note about rationality and Kim/Trump: Some posters seem to be conflating rationality (or lack thereof) with sanity, plausibility, desirability, ethical behavior, and other related concepts. It's important to note that "rational" means only that a belief is based on...
  • Commented on Houston: what are the long-term consequences?
    guthrie notes: "Certainly Florida property prices crashing makes excellent sense, but so far the history of land speculation in Florida suggets that they may not." Past performance does not predict future performance. *G* If current trends continue, it won't just...
  • Commented on Houston: what are the long-term consequences?
    Troutwaxer noted: "Washington and his generation founded our country so they get a pass on being vilified." Why? Showing them as complex people (perhaps noble, definitely flawed) is crucially important. Among other things, taking them off the whitewashed altars they...
  • Commented on Houston: what are the long-term consequences?
    Troutwaxer noted: "My thoughts on statues of Treasonous Slaveowning Generals are as follows: I do not think the statues should be removed." I agree. My concern is that once the statues are gone, and children no longer ask Mom and...
  • Commented on Houston: what are the long-term consequences?
    The scary thing about Trump versus North Korea is the "sunk cost fallacy": the more emotional energy you invest in staking out a position, the harder it becomes to abandon it. Apart from the ethics of this solution (or lack...
  • Commented on Houston: what are the long-term consequences?
    Speaking of the Houston flooding: http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/houston-flood-concrete-planning-1.4271740 Science: it works, bitches! Footnote to my post on the October crisis: To be clear, I was focusing on the imposition of martial law, not an actual coup. So it's not a really good...
  • Commented on Houston: what are the long-term consequences?
    Speaking of failures of democracy, you may be thinking "it can't happen here". But yes, it really can, and for evidence, I offer you the following, which occurred within the lifetime of (probably) most readers of this blog, including me:...
  • Commented on Houston: what are the long-term consequences?
    Heteromeles noted: "What I'm thinking here is not that I'm pro-military or anti-military, precisely." Fully agree. Like any huge organization, a national military will have the full range of humanity well-represented, from the noble and laudable to the downright scary....
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