Search found 546 matches

by wumpus
Thu Jun 14, 2018 2:28 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2006: "Customer Rewards"
Replies: 40
Views: 3477

Re: 2006: "Customer Attention"

Given this is (presumedly) the US, those weird local sales taxes you have (and the even weirder final figure) must already be in the initial value (minus the things previously normally paid for by semi-involuntary participation in data-scraping anyway , giving $20.45?)… It gets worse when you are j...
by wumpus
Fri Jun 08, 2018 3:10 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6248
Views: 901326

At least some misbehaving cops punished...

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-44402948 more information http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/crime/bs-md-ci-gttf-jenkins-taylor-sentencing-20180606-story.html Note that the lead officer was considered "untouchable" for his corruption, so presumably his protectors and kickba...
by wumpus
Thu Jun 07, 2018 5:02 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2003: "Presidential Succession"
Replies: 72
Views: 6283

Re: 2003: "Presidential Succession"

(Who is South-African, whoever it is who doesn't realise that. Geoff Bezos is American, as is Burt Rutan (though I think Richard Branson, the Brit is currently "the money", and there's other people above Rutan in the structure these days). It's a non-zero countable list, but I leave it up...
by wumpus
Mon Jun 04, 2018 12:11 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1996: "Morning News"
Replies: 20
Views: 3108

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Yeah, but at least their news didn't consist of Twitter reactions. I'm not sure when it happened, but by the 1990s it was considered improper to report actual facts. You had to present both "sides" (even for things like flat Earth vs. oblate spheroid) and do so largely via quotes. Using T...
by wumpus
Fri Jun 01, 2018 11:21 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Where Aren't They Now (Obituaries)
Replies: 249
Views: 48730

Re: Where Aren't They Now (Obituaries)

The original prognosis was for 2030, but we are currently below the 50% curve with four living moon men. Not much. Follow it up to "4 left" and you the 50 percentile is before 2020. The "5th percentile" is way down by 2015. So while it does look a bit below 50%, it isn't by much...
by wumpus
Fri Jun 01, 2018 11:16 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6248
Views: 901326

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Your logic boils down to expecting people to prioritize the same things as you, when that's definitely not the case in reality. Folks are accepting Trump as the option closest to their interests. Sort of. Trump still doesn't have an amazing popularity rating. By the numbers, people don't really act...
by wumpus
Fri May 25, 2018 3:53 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6248
Views: 901326

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Society changes rapidly. It was only 14 years ago where a white man could sexually assault a black woman on live tv and the entire media would blame her , literally blaming it on what she was wearing. "Wardrobe malfunction"? Really? I'm pretty sure that was a scripted event, and unlikely ...
by wumpus
Mon May 21, 2018 4:36 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1996: "Morning News"
Replies: 20
Views: 3108

Re: 1996: "Morning News"

Anyone assuming the trustworthiness of newspapers in the paper age should look up the shenanigans of H.L. Mencken and William Randalf Hurst. Mencken described in detail the invention of news at the local level: hearing rumors in a bar, making up the details, and for the important part: sharing it wi...
by wumpus
Sun May 20, 2018 6:19 pm UTC
Forum: Hardware
Topic: Thicker Extension Cord = Blown Fuses
Replies: 4
Views: 2192

Re: Thicker Extension Cord = Blown Fuses

In case you are wondering what happened, the power rating on the devices are designed to draw 800W or 1000W from 120VAC (assuming US power sources, I don't know if True Value stores are common outside the US). The catch is that extension cord knocked the voltage down a bit, so they weren't heating n...
by wumpus
Sat May 12, 2018 4:53 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1992: "SafetySat"
Replies: 28
Views: 4905

Re: 1992: "SafetySat"

So, I just took "Space Law" at CUA Law school. While you have ample violations of the FAA, FCC, ITU and DOD rules. To violate EVERY regulator of Satellites that I know of, you need: *A violation of the Outer Space Treaty - A nuke or WMD will do. *A violation of the NOAA rules - any earth ...
by wumpus
Sat May 12, 2018 4:50 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1990: "Driving Cars"
Replies: 86
Views: 8421

Re: 1990: "Driving Cars"

A factor of 10 assumes that either the drivers aren't tailgating (which likely only happens in places that *don't* need more roads) or the computer simply has *zero* spacing between cars. A factor of 3 to 5 seems possible, although how you would be certain that a human didn't slip into your convoy ...
by wumpus
Fri May 11, 2018 5:12 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1990: "Driving Cars"
Replies: 86
Views: 8421

Re: 1990: "Driving Cars"

Nearly all traffic is caused either by poor human driving habits, or by accidents. We could handle 10 times the number of cars if they were driven by computer systems. Huge [citation needed] on that figure. I accept that the number of cars could increase a bit if all of them were connected and comp...
by wumpus
Thu May 10, 2018 5:10 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1990: "Driving Cars"
Replies: 86
Views: 8421

Re: 1990: "Driving Cars"

2015: ~0.80/1000 mi (1 failure per 1244 miles) 2016: ~0.20/1000 mi (1 failure per 5127 miles) 2017: ~0.18/1000 mi (1 failure per 5596 miles) The 90/90 rule of engineering is lumbering out of hibernation, as the computer-driven cars are reaching... 1% of human ability. https://www.dmv.ca.gov/portal/...
by wumpus
Tue May 08, 2018 9:20 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1990: "Driving Cars"
Replies: 86
Views: 8421

Re: 1990: "Driving Cars"

Comparing cars across 30 years of development is going to get you some odd results. Your Prius almost certainly has more horsepower than what passed for a Dodge Charger in 1985. Those old '80s Civics gave you anywhere from 55 to around 80 hp. There are very few cars that are underpowered nowadays f...
by wumpus
Tue May 08, 2018 4:49 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1990: "Driving Cars"
Replies: 86
Views: 8421

Re: 1990: "Driving Cars"

Some thoughts: Do ultralights still not require a license (and thus age)? The first death in my high school class (@16) died this way... Pierre Currie died in a horse carriage accident. Presumably these were not unknown. Then there was chariot racing that was presumably entertainment similar to glad...
by wumpus
Tue May 01, 2018 3:25 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1987: "Python Environment"
Replies: 29
Views: 4401

Re: 1987: "Python Environment"

harmless.sh What if you have to make a derivative of the code? Would it be "Mostly Harmless?" I'm trying to decide if that file is required to have a "goto" in it, or if it's required not to. I think the requirement is to use goto, but have rules to make it "safe". Lik...
by wumpus
Sat Apr 28, 2018 5:36 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1986: "River Border"
Replies: 69
Views: 8650

Re: 1986: River Border

The Potomac river is the border of Maryland and Virginia, with the curious property that the entire river is part of Maryland. As far as I know, the only real difference is that you could have a building on the Virginia shore that sold VA lottery tickets, and also have a cash register on a floating ...
by wumpus
Tue Apr 03, 2018 5:27 pm UTC
Forum: Fictional Science
Topic: Trying to develop a hard sci fi magick system
Replies: 12
Views: 2421

Re: Trying to develop a hard sci fi magick system

I think the fundamental problem is claiming that anything possible in a hard sci fi universe is magick and not technology. What are you supposed to do, summon Maxwell's demon? In the introduction to "Recluse Tales" (a bunch of short stories revisiting a 20 year+ old series), L. E. Modesitt...
by wumpus
Sun Mar 25, 2018 6:52 pm UTC
Forum: Hardware
Topic: After a decade it's time for a new computer
Replies: 24
Views: 6698

Re: After a decade it's time for a new computer

There's a thread over on realworldtech.com that has a lot of pros and cons of used enterprise SSDs (Linus mentions how consumer ones have a non-zero chance of losing all data if you lose power at the wrong time). Can't say I'm sold. I've been more curious out refurbished rotating drives. While the &...
by wumpus
Sun Mar 25, 2018 6:42 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6248
Views: 901326

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Nearly 1000 people were killed by police last year. 68 were unarmed. So 7% of the time a police officer decides to shoot someone to death, that person is unarmed... Given the number of police who plant weapons on people they’ve shot as well as the utter lack of any sort of consistent reporting - or...
by wumpus
Mon Jan 08, 2018 4:38 pm UTC
Forum: Computer Science
Topic: Favorite Programming Language
Replies: 23
Views: 9321

Re: Favorite Programming Language

Languages are tools, not pets. Use the right tool for the right job. As awesome as rust's safety guarantees are, sometimes a bash one-liner is all you need. So far, every language I met had *some* use case where it shines, and *some* use case where it's a poor choice. True, so we should probably me...
by wumpus
Sun Jan 07, 2018 12:29 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1938: "Meltdown and Spectre"
Replies: 36
Views: 5500

Re: 1938: "Meltdown and Spectre"

I think this, like rowhammer, shows mostly that we are getting sufficiently good at software security that attackers have to exploit the hardware. Actually, Heartbleed is only about 2 months older than rowhammer. Who needs hardware exploits when you only have to press backspace 28 times? Show me a ...
by wumpus
Thu Jan 04, 2018 4:01 pm UTC
Forum: Hardware
Topic: After a decade it's time for a new computer
Replies: 24
Views: 6698

Re: After a decade it's time for a new computer

get a good 100 or 200 amps extra than your total (power distribution unit) What? I think you mean milli amps. My entire house's electrical supply is protected by a 60amp fuse. I think he means Watts. Even so, power is [instantaneous] voltage * [instantaneous] current. So >100 Amps going into a <1.0...
by wumpus
Sun Dec 31, 2017 6:54 pm UTC
Forum: Hardware
Topic: 1980s PCs
Replies: 5
Views: 1921

Re: 1980s PCs

I don't remember that editor at all (I wrote nearly all my BASIC on 8-bit Ataris, and mostly wrote Visual Basic much later on PCs). Presumably it was part of BASICA (or possibly QuickBasic, although I think QuickBasic had a "later DOSish" interface). I *did* use an editor presumably inspir...
by wumpus
Thu Dec 14, 2017 2:05 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1928: "Seven Years"
Replies: 52
Views: 12575

Re: 1928: "Seven Years"

Regarding a strip from SMBC, "I don't care if curing cancer is like curing virus. It needs done".

- you might want to cure virus as well. And maybe deliver me a pony.
by wumpus
Thu Dec 14, 2017 2:03 pm UTC
Forum: Hardware
Topic: After a decade it's time for a new computer
Replies: 24
Views: 6698

Re: After a decade it's time for a new computer

You do know about https://pcpartpicker.com/ don't you, it makes finding a good build vastly easier. Video card: Titan V is only the answer if you really care about machine learning or double precision CUDA work. If you do it is a "great bargain" (compared to its meager/exhorbinant competit...
by wumpus
Mon Nov 27, 2017 3:08 pm UTC
Forum: Hardware
Topic: Repairing a Digital Multimeter?
Replies: 5
Views: 3552

Re: Repairing a Digital Multimeter?

I'm not sure this is the right place to ask, but it's my best bet. Recently I made the mistake of measuring AC current with a multimeter only capable of measuring DC current (Voltcraft VC130-1). Since then the resistance measuements are all wrong and the diode tester beeps continuously even if I re...
by wumpus
Fri Nov 24, 2017 4:20 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1920: "Emoji Sports"
Replies: 23
Views: 4954

Re: 1920: "Emoji Sports"

The title text seems a bit odd. While plenty of breeders will immediately retire a horse to stud after winning a Kentucky Derby (the recent triple crown winner had already sold stud rights, so the owner had no reason to retire the horse early), you still should put Missouri Horse Hole before the Bel...
by wumpus
Fri Nov 24, 2017 4:14 pm UTC
Forum: Computer Science
Topic: Encryption for the Lich Queen's spys?
Replies: 18
Views: 12309

Re: Encryption for the Lich Queen's spys?

DnD rules don't have any spells for it because Decipher Script is just a skill check. So basically it's unsupported by magic, beyond stacking Int bonuses. As a DM I'd probably have the creator take 20 on making it to set the DC, then give a cracker one check per workday or something, with reduction...
by wumpus
Thu Nov 23, 2017 7:08 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: My Future Invention card game
Replies: 8
Views: 2233

Re: My Future Invention card game

jewish_scientist wrote:You realize that I have to read this now.


Lucky you. [shades of https://www.xkcd.com/1053/ and the experience of seeing coke&memtos for the first time]
by wumpus
Wed Nov 22, 2017 5:21 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: My Future Invention card game
Replies: 8
Views: 2233

Re: My Future Invention card game

Could you limit this to just one thread and not do what "Maximum77" did on this site: http://www.giantitp.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?62-Mad-Science-and-Grumpy-Technology To those who missed it, OOTS is the "other great stick figure comic" on the internet. It might not have any o...
by wumpus
Tue Nov 21, 2017 4:25 pm UTC
Forum: Computer Science
Topic: Encryption for the Lich Queen's spys?
Replies: 18
Views: 12309

Re: Encryption for the Lich Queen's spys?

Say you are advising this evil lich queen one day and she requests an improved system of encryption as part of her overarching plan to stop all opposition. In what scenario would spies need better encryption rather than steganography? I thought spying was all about passing information unbeknownst t...
by wumpus
Mon Nov 20, 2017 4:04 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1918: "NEXUS"
Replies: 25
Views: 4196

Re: 1918: "NEXUS"

The premise of #1918 is absurd except that the 15th anniversary of Operation Iraqi Freedom is coming up, when this really happened. The French were too stupide to join Bush 43's invasion of Iraq. By March 2003, there was a de facto boycott of products that sounded French but weren't: https://news.v...
by wumpus
Sat Nov 11, 2017 5:18 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1914: "Twitter Verification"
Replies: 61
Views: 8574

Re: 1914: "Twitter Verification"

to let you know that you are looking at the real account of a famous person and not a parody account. Whether or not that was their intention at the time, the implementation doesn't reflect that. The badge system, in practice, would verify that the owner of the account was the same person as the ow...
by wumpus
Mon Oct 30, 2017 4:32 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1909:"Digital Resource Lifespan"
Replies: 61
Views: 7118

Re: 1909:"Digital Resource Lifespan"

How long will it take to get a pdf variant that won't include javascript (or flash and EXE exploit holes)? I've been fond of the format since .ps were available on ftp, but can't recommend an Adobe format for "digital resource lifespan". PS: what does it take to replace microfilm lamps wit...
by wumpus
Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:11 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1904: Research Risks
Replies: 62
Views: 6628

Re: 1904: Research Risks

So does that mean Larry Ellison qualifies as a super villain? I wouldn't be surprised. No idea if that was what has been pushing Elon Musk into building a volcano lair. For those wondering about molasses storage: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Molasses_Flood I assume it should be a higher threa...
by wumpus
Mon Oct 16, 2017 3:56 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1903: "Bun Trend"
Replies: 24
Views: 3651

Re: 1903: "Bun Trend"

I think it is more a follow up of this comic: https://xkcd.com/1682/ I tend to despair of the last time the US had a government likely to be better than a lagomarchy. Maybe we should simply grab Canadian officials and put them in US office (hopefully Canada could endure the situation thanks to great...
by wumpus
Sat Oct 14, 2017 5:59 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: What is Wealth?
Replies: 10
Views: 3989

Re: What is Wealth?

I don't think you can ponder wealth and Native Americans (or should I say First Nations, I think this is more common in Canada) without considering the potlatch. Presumably the potlatch can be seen as a useful form of socialism (hopefully those in need get enough), extreme wealth signaling (much lik...
by wumpus
Mon Oct 02, 2017 3:20 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1897: "Self Driving"
Replies: 57
Views: 9366

Re: 1897: "Self Driving"

Come now, Goto is for noob-lords. On the contrary: the Linux kernel is full of gotos. They're used both by n00bs and by the 1337est of the 1337. It's just intermediate programmers who are advised to avoid them. (Like the way beginners and professional electricians will strip wire using a pair of pl...
by wumpus
Thu Sep 28, 2017 2:25 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: EXPERIENCE TRUE LEVEL!
Replies: 21
Views: 7207

Re: EXPERIENCE TRUE LEVEL!

Apparently the new kilogram standard is a perfect sphere correct to 3 Angstroms, which, depending on the atom/bonding, is approx 1-3 atoms/bonds. https://www.newscientist.com/article/dn14229-roundest-objects-in-the-world-created/ That's just one proposed standard. The 2018 redefinition is likely to...

Go to advanced search