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* Posts by Grikath

598 posts • joined 9 Feb 2012

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Got your NUDE SELFIES in the cloud? Two-factor auth's your best bet for securing them

Grikath
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There's a couple of places....

I'd keep any putative nude selfies of me.. Or any other sensitive private information for that matter.

"the Cloud" most definitely isn't one of them.

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Was Earth once covered in HELLFIRE? No – more like a wet Sunday night in Iceland

Grikath
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Boffin

Re: Goldilocks

Given the sheer amount of planets with origins similar to ours in the entire universe, and considering current theories on how life came to be, you're probably right. Getting to the point where we are takes quite a few other hurdles that are less well-determined.

Mind.. this is a pretty important find, since it extends the buildup time of "natural organics" needed to actually make up "life" by quite a margin. It certainly debunks the "not enough time" apologists in the whole, ancient discussion.

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Europe prepares to INVADE comet: Rosetta landing site chosen

Grikath
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Re: The region lies at the top of the comet

you pick the longest end in cross-section, then flip a coin.

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Archaeologists and robots on hunt for more Antikythera pieces

Grikath
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"since it seemed to embody technology which used to be considered far beyond the roughly 60 BC societies that created it." FTFY

According to the post-19th C Spinners-of-Tales that classed themselves as "historians". There's plenty of surviving sources and artifacts that clearly show knowledge of what we would class as "machinery" including gear systems, and a level of technological ability that rivalled if not surpassed our own in some ( now "obsolete" ) areas.

Most of that stuff would have been trade secrets, and would not have been widely known, but you can see the *results* in the existing archaeology and whatever has been preserved. No tinfoil hat needed.

But I do hope they manage to find more pieces. It's an elegant thing, judging from the recreations I've spotted around, and a really nice piece of brainsweat.

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NASA on Curiosity bot: Mission accomplished (for now at least)

Grikath
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Happy

curioser and curiositier

Very excited about this one. :)

Even if curiosity does not find any (direct) evidence of extraterrestrial life as such, a decent slice of extraterrestrial planetary history is basically priceless already for so many scientific disciplines.

Drive on, brave chariot!

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CNN 'tech analyst' on NAKED CELEBS: WHO IS this mystery '4chan' PERSON?

Grikath
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Re: Europe

only if you live down south..

over here between the Dikes it would be "W8chtw00rd" ..

come to think of it.. "Y0uSh4llN0tP4ss" would be a nice one ;)

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Grikath
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AH, but you're forgetting the pecking order of showbusiness... IT is just about the lowest form of life as seen from the Floor, hell they're not even directly associated with it, and they can probably not even comprehend the fact that there just may be people around that actually know Stuff.

Even if someone does, the mere thought of giving someone that low on the Ladder actual airtime will probably cause a couple of heart attacks and aneurisms.

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Cave scrawls prove Neanderthals were AT LEAST as talented as modern artists

Grikath
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Re: Art or Design?

Nope. You don't sharpen a stone tool in a way that leaves marks like that. In fact, you'd only blunt it.

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BBC: We're going to slip CODING into kids' TV

Grikath
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Re: "Coding" may not result... @ boltar

" Its not teenagers per-se that are the problem but the current moronic dumbed down celebrity culture where the only qualification that seems to be needed to get on in life is a look-at-me haircut and the ability to hold a mic and not fall over for 3 minutes."

Which was different in the '70's until now exactly how? The only difference since roughly the '90's may be that there's the addition of the powergrrrls that adorn teenage girls' rooms.

And seriously... Learning to program (and associated activities good for Preparing for your Future ) has never been conductive to get a bit of snogging in, between, say, age 14 and 18. And certainly never from the girls you (hopefully somewhat discreetly) hoped to get it from at that age..

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Grikath
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"Coding" may not result...

Especially since the age group you really want to enthuse turn into raging balls of hormones (girls first, then boys) with primarily only the other gender** on the mind, at a time when you ordinarily would be able to show them why learning certain things may be a good idea for the future ( which presumably involves a lot more of the other gender, in hopefully a more practical sense.) This had always been a hurdle for any teacher, but programming or "coding" requires a dollop or two of several other subjects outside of strict programming, like maths, physics, "logic" in various forms, and electronics to make the subject actually stick. Neither of which are in any way or shape "cool"or "comfortable" for teenagers, since they require to Engage Brain, which detracts time and energy from chasing the Other Subject, making life double hard for teachers in those subjects.

I can see where they're aiming, and you can definitely use kiddie programs to familiarise children and pre-teens with certain aspects of technology, possibly even in a Fun Way. But in the end you always hit the rocks on actual interest when it comes to choosing subjects when the kids come at an age where the System dictates they have to. Simple human biology practically ensures that any amount of pre-preparing and propaganda goes straight out the window. Unless you adopt the Asian approach, which revolves not around Teaching, but drilling and a rather gruesome internal competition, you simply won't get anywhere.

The best you'll get out of this, within the current flavour of education in western europe, is a slightly more tech-savvy teenager, who may be better hardened against life online. But it will not increase interest in "coding".

** I know.. there's same-sex interest.. But even at the most inflated occurrence of some 5%, this still means that >95% will chase the other gender. Which is Significant enough by trick-cyclist rules to generalise.

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Windows 7 settles as Windows XP use finally starts to slip … a bit

Grikath
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Re: "hard core of folks"

Sticking to XP may have various, sometimes even valid reasons...

But what on earth must people be on to still use bloody Vista?!!

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Ninja Pirate Zombie Vampires versus Chuck Norris and the Space Marines

Grikath
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Have we missed clowns?

They only seem harmless, but hand them a ladder and a bucket of whitewash.... *shudder*

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Top beak: UK privacy law may be reconsidered because of social media

Grikath
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huhwhot?

The UK has privacy laws? Coulda fooled me, given the spate of articles proving quite the contrary the past couple of years.

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Boffins attempt to prove the UNIVERSE IS JUST A HOLOGRAM

Grikath
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Re: Reminds me of ...

or a certain Glass Clock...

Now where did I stash my procrastinator...

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Oz biz regulator discovers shared servers in EPIC FACEPALM

Grikath
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Stupidity....

It always finds a way to one-up even the worst worst-case scenario.

Worst thing is... These clowns will simply stay wherever they are, will not get any sanctions against them, and will happily and "innocently" mess things up again..

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China building SUPERSONIC SUBMARINE that travels in a BUBBLE

Grikath
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Re: The wake?

That's the point isn't it? For all current detection purposes, a sub using this will be so noisy you can pick it up 100's of miles away. If it ever gets built it would be more of a "Warning! We cracked the secret of this little trick..." type of grandstanding as opposed to having any actual military tactical value.

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No, thank you. I will not code for the Caliphate

Grikath
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Subtle...

Like a mace in the face..

And yes, dear AC's ... It's funny as hell, if a bit dark.

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Your Bitcoins aren't money – but it is barter, so we'll tax it, ta ... says Australia's taxman

Grikath
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Re: great news for the exchanges that got knocked off

"A proper exchange will most likely know where its virtcoins are, and who they belong to."

Nope.... They will know exactly which coins are in which wallets. Who those wallets belong to not so much, especially in the cases where peeps set things up to work the Dark Side™...

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Microsoft exits climate denier lobby group

Grikath
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Yup, reads a bit like Twurp's Peerage... Nearly all the Who's who is there in that list.

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Grikath
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Holmes

Re: ...that word. I do not think it means what you think it means

"I bet we could find someone who denies the climate exists."

Not that hard, since the concept of "climate" as most people understand it is a Lie To Children, and as such does , indeed, not exist.

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LOHAN packs bags for SPACEPORT AMERICA!

Grikath
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Re: Explosives factory

It Has To Be Done!

Also. Doesn't this particular example of officious buffoonery have a superior who may be a little more inclined to recognise that it's not really good PR to snub a project of a rather well-known if not (in)famous online IT news outlet?

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Grikath
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Holland: 50% water, rest is either 'leccy tower, highway, dense urban jungle, all sided, fronted, and accompanied by trees. Plus it's rather densely populated in the skies, and the Officials *really* don't like anything to do with potential explosives. LOHAN's combined package would not get permission to lift off, and one test package has already met a probably watery end in one of North Hollands' semipermanently flooded meadows or the IJsselmeer.

Oh, and the weather over here is ..welll... good luck picking a launch window...

Germany: too. many. damned. trees. Often in places with a distinct lack of roads, or near-vertical geography. Or if you're unlucky, and the jetstream has a "good day", you'll be picking up the plane far into eastern Europe..

France: "Ze english, zey vant to do vat?!!!!!" Also trees, vinyards, and the not-so-slight chance of LOHAN ending up somewhere in the Pyrenees or the Alps (trees optional)

As much as I would have loved a Euro lanch, New Mexico is in a pure technical sense a better option.

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Ballmer leaves Microsoft board to spend more time with his b-balls

Grikath
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Facepalm

Re: 2 billion US dollars?

He needed a good excuse to bow out gracefully after borking just about everything under his rule...

He set the course for the cliffs, now he can watch from the sideline and play backseat driver as Nadella tries to veer away from disaster. Fun, innit?

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CRR-CRRRK, beep, beep: Mars space truck backs out of slippery sand trap

Grikath
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Re: Hardness of aluminium

Of course they are, given that pure aluminium is too soft and plyable to be used outright in anything structural.

Exactly *which* alloy they used is a lot harder to find though.

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Munich considers dumping Linux for ... GULP ... Windows!

Grikath
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Re: Josef Schmid's personal opinion

well yes.. it's at least partly political..

Then again, the issues raised in the article are valid, and all too common when working with open source in a microsoft-dominated habitat. The biggest problem is the insular nature of the implementation, as pointed out in the article, which is neither efficient nor wise when you're part of a larger government structure. And even if other government bodies would have made the switch, the Public still has not, and will not switch to open source on a scale sufficient to alleviate the problems encountered.

They're running into the "problem" that for all practical purposes Microsoft simply still has a virtual monopoly in the OS/Office space, and that there are no useable "turnkey" solutions on the scale they need in the open source sector that compensates for the rather well-known issues between WinOffice and open source.

And forking/developing is simply too impractical, too expensive, and too risky for the situation we have here.

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Yes, but what are your plans if a DRAGON attacks?

Grikath
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Trollface

Re: I pay my council tax, so answer the damn question already!

Given the scarcity of british virgins nowadays.... not as often as it used to..

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Rupert Murdoch says Google is worse than the NSA

Grikath
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Re: For one , I got to agree with Rupert

"However, the NSA is completely unavoidable unless you don't use a computer, Telephone, Fax machine, Mobile phone, or any device capable of remote communication."

By which time they would be very interested in you , since you must have something to hide if you....etc...

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Time to move away from Windows 7 ... whoa, whoa, who said anything about Windows 8?

Grikath
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Re: But this has four!! @ irongut

I think you'll find that for a work computer the art is in throttling the capabilities of the OS ( and the software allowed to run on it) to the minimum necessary to make User [x] perform his/her job.

So yes, a work computer is more or less like a single function tool, if you do it right. You do not want users to get...creative..

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Grikath
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Re: Clouds don't last forever

"Then we are basically back to the 1970's/80's environment that looks a lot like the good old mainframe with dumb terminals."

ssstt..... You're not supposed to remind people that the whole Cloud setup is a fancy version of the old server-side model.. It's New! It's Exciting!!!! It's for people with Smarts!!!

ummm [/sarc]

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Bath boffins put BUGS on chips – on purpose

Grikath
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Re: Neat.

I am aware of the possibilities, and worked with the first-gen versions of the technique some 20 years ago. It's very nice, but hardly "cheap".

There is, of course, the teensiest caveat regarding using heavily modified bacteria outside of a laboratory as well. the Hippies** et.al would probably have an objection or two...

** insert the usual El Reg Hippie disclaimer here.

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Grikath
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Re: Neat.

Neat, but the spectrum is the thing to look at.

Something that's bad for those bacteria may be completely harmless to us, and vice versa. It's also not telling you which pollutant is in the water, just that there's something there that may possibly be bad for you.

It's nice for quick 'n dirty work, but you've got reagent kits that are just as efficient, and tell you more about what's going on..

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Apple BANS 2 chemicals from iPhone, iPad final assembly line

Grikath
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question is...

What were the actual concentrations found?

From the article it seems to me that most of the stuff they found is trace leftover degreaser, possibly due to production pressure and insufficient airing times.

This would be measureable, but hardly noticeable, especially with n-hexane, which gets you stoned when you hit the (EU) legal limit of 25 ppm (prolongued-exposure toxicity (associated with the nervous disorders) for n-hexane is lowest-value 500 ppm, 20 times over that limit..) I can't imagine those facories working with peeps working in fumes thick enough to have a measureable physical effect. There'd be a recall or two each week if you let your cheap labour get stoned on the job, and such...

Benzene itself is not as nasty as people will have it, actually. The problem is mostly with its metabolites in the human body ( which also occur naturally) which are rather nasty. Flooding your system with that stuff through benzene inhalation is definitely a bad idea, although you really still need to inhale quite a bit of the stuff to have serious effects. The MAC value for benzene is very low (<1 ppm), but you hit that value with a bit of splash of gasoline, or for that matter a nice walk in a pinewood.

Both substances can be nasty long-term if misused/applied, but other than the bruhaha about "Dangerous Suffz" from environmentalists they rate pretty low on the scale of "Stuff you don't want to be around in/with". Especially as far as benzene is concerned there's even chance the air in the factory is cleaner than outside, given the rather notorious smog problem.

I'm not one to jump to the defense of megacorps/factories, but this one comes across as a kneejerk reaction, without properly investigating the cause.

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IBM boffins stuff 16 million-neuron chips into binary 'frog' brain

Grikath
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"16 million neurons is roughly the scale of a frog brain," Prof Furber quipped. "So, the IBM board may be able to catch a fly for its dinner."

If they manage to get it *that* coordinated they'd be in for a Nobel prize...

That being said..... I want to play with one...

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Now even Internet Explorer will throw lousy old Java into the abyss

Grikath
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Re: Microsoft FAIL

Eadon , is that you? :P

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Grikath
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Re: smug

and the track record of the other browsers is ....what again? There is no such thing as a secure, bug-free browser, and as soon as browser [x] becomes popular it becomes a target for exploitation.

Many, many of the security-minded crowd tend to forget that security through obscurity has worked wonders for them over the years. Small user fractions are simply not interesting targets.

Linux and the alternative browsers used to have such a tiny market percentage that the black hats simply did not bother at all with them, thus raising a false sense of security, and quite a bit of hobnobbery about it. With the rise of popularity of the linux platform and the "alternative" browsers those systems suddenly did become attractive for exploitation, and bugs and vulnerabilities did prove to exist in said software. Just like in Windows/IE.

Which is when much sniggering ensued about the gnashing of teeth of those who had to eat their own rantings over the past decades.

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Brit kids match 45-year-old fogies' tech skill level by the age of 6

Grikath
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Facepalm

tech skills?

Pushing buttons maybe. But hand them a screwdriver, and see the panic enter their eyes.

Hell, being 45 years old I remember the time where a healthy lad of 6 with a screwdriver would have been a terror, because you'd never know what would have been disassembled this time around. Nowadays? pffffttt.

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CIA infosec guru: US govt must buy all zero-days and set them free

Grikath
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Re: US govt must buy all zero-days and set them free

I was wondering why this rather critical flaw in the logic wasn't commented on immediately....

You cannot trust any government with a scheme like this, let alone one that has proven to have a rather cavalier attitude when it comes to civilians' rights. Within a week the first accusations of [government body x] not releasing all acquired data, or retaining data for [nefarious purpose x] will fly. Nationally and internationally.

And no way to really prove the opposite even if the agency involved was squeeky clean and holier than st. Peter.

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SCORE: Rosetta probe hits orbit of duck-shaped comet

Grikath
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Pint

what can you say...

just impressive..

The peeps who got Rosetta this far deserve a couple of cold ones.

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Has Europe cut the UK adrift on data protection?

Grikath
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Re: Little Englander syndrome

"The reality, we are actually a very large and rather well populated island, with a very large economy, a significant armed force, a rich and varied demographic, good educational standards, a highly trained workforce and a willingness to embrace change and new ideas."

the reality:

large and well populated... You mean greater london and it's satellites?

a very large economy ... which is why there's tons of british working in mainland europe, because there's f*ckall to be had at home.

a significant armed force .... funny you felt the need to include that...

a rich and varied demographic .... which is rampant with racism and discrimination, despite the blanket of political correctness.

good educational standards ... could have fooled me there.

a highly trained workforce.... of which the fraction that actually can and will do anything productive tends to look for work on mainland europe. What's left is B-Ark material..

a willingness to embrace change and new ideas... If there's one country famous for it's hidebound conservatism it's the bloody UK....

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Ethicists say Facebook's experiments not SO creepy

Grikath
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it's not an experiment...

If ith hathn'th got a lighthning rod sthrappeth tho ith!

That being said ethics** ( the biology Boffin variety) , and Ethics ( the trick-cyclists variety) are two different beasts, and the confusion of the two regularly gives rise to this kind of fun.

** The one where option "whack-you-over-the head-if-you displease-me" is a valid, and general purpose option. This is why biologists tend to just Grin at trick cyclists. They can defend the Ook! option, and usually are able to get away with it.

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Senate introduces USA FREEDOM Act to curb NSA spying excesses

Grikath
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So....

They're implementing the lightning rod.

And that would change things how? As pointed out above, within even non-black ops there's 50 shades of data sharing going on already, all "legal". This thing does not change until the curb and bit are applied internationally. Until then? Business as usual.

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Asteroid's DINO KILLING SPREE just bad luck – boffins

Grikath
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Re: Genuine question

Well.. The KT border tells us there must have been something that is rich in stuff the earth has not in sufficient quantities to show up all over the globe that "arrived" at that time. Currently nothing else but "a bloody big rock hitting the earth at interplanetary speed" fits that bill. It also helps they've located the impact site nowadays.

Outside of the obvious effects at ground zero and its direct surroundings (total annihilation of just about everything), the shockwave that propagated through the globe would almost certainly have triggered every fault and subcritical volcano then extant, adding some local spice to the mix. Note that the volcano would have to have been suvcritical to begin with. The ones with empty magma chambers would at most have collapsed. New volcanoes... well shaking the globe up like that would have most likely opened up a crack or two.

The problem with the supervolcanoes is about the same as with "ordinary" volcanoes: would they have been subcritical at the time? The Siberia traps, being at the opposite end of the globe at the time, belong to a much earlier event, and would have been "dead" up until the impact. Would the converging schockwave have cracked open the surface there, forcing eruptions? Most likely. Would it have blown up supervolcano style? Not very likely.. The engine there was already running idle.

The Deccan traps are from that era, and its existence may well be tied to the impact itself. The problem with trap-like features is that in and of themselves they are not strong enough to force a global mass extinction. The changes they're forcing are too gradual, so that taxa (not species...) have time to adapt to the changing environment. They are very unlikely to cause a shift in the dominant taxa, certainly not in the relatively short period of the KT extinction. The Deccan would, however, have added insult to injury, certainly locally.

Yellowstone, if the plume that feeds it was already present, and in more or less the same absolute place, would have been well under water, between the two parts of what now is the north american continent. Currently that spot would be somewhere scrunched up in the Rockies... Good luck hunting for it... ;)

Besides... the dinosaurs *did* survive... look a healthy old-fashioned rooster in the eye.. imagine it to be man-sized... and remember that chickens are omnivorous... The old "reptilian megafauna" may have gone the way of the mammoth, that doesn't mean their cousins aren't still around..

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New Star Wars movie plot details leak, violate common sense and laws of physics

Grikath
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Re: Perhaps someone could buy the hand in a fleamarket

Now the clone-and-subvert angle would have the possibility of making an interesting storyline. Which is why it would never happen.

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Mwa-ha-ha-ha! Eccentric billionaire Musk gets his PRIVATE SPACEPORT

Grikath
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Re: Confused on the motivation...

No. It is about being independent of NASA's facilities, and not having to wrangle around for launch slots. Besides that, he needs his own site, as NASA will most definitely throw a fit if he tries to land his rockets at their facilities...

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Grikath
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Happy

Re: I would not be so sure

Given Musk's known streak of geeky humor?...... Soon™... ;)

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Programming languages in economics: Cool research, bro, but what about, er, economics?

Grikath
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Devil

Re: Oh dear...

reality proof? economics? Bwahahahahahaaaa!..

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MPs wave through Blighty's 'EMERGENCY' surveillance laws

Grikath
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unsurprised, but ...really?

people simply bend over and take this in britain?

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Boffins urge European Commission to reboot electric brain project

Grikath
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Re: Where's the cheese?

Not that much later as you'd think.... There's very little difference between a mouse brain and a human brain. The differences are mostly a matter of size/capacity of specific areas.

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Islamic terror peril hits US giants' phone wallets

Grikath
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Holmes

Re: ISIS's name confuses me anyway

because the poor old lady is defenseless, and a couple of wiccans waving natural incense around doesn't purify enough to stop bullets and shells.

Never forget that Religion has always been best promoted with Ponty Bits.

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Wannabe Startup CEOs Hate This Guy: Potato Salad man and the $60k

Grikath
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Re: Will he really make a huge profit though?

ah.... but the point of the whole exercise is that it's an investment... No actual guarantees.

The art at the base of Kickstarter ( and like setups) is to find the few gold nuggets in the field. You simply don't have to have oodles of cash lying around to participate in the same amount of risk.

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