the unofficial Slashdot digest for 2022-Jan-13 today archive

Alterslash picks up to the best 5 comments from each of the day’s Slashdot stories, and presents them on a single page for easy reading.

The Hottest Eight Years On Record Were the Last Eight Years

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Verge: The last eight years have been the eight hottest years on record, NASA and the National Oceanic Administration (NOAA) confirmed today. 2021 ranks as the sixth hottest year on record, the agencies said, as global average temperatures trend upward. Rankings aside, there were plenty of red flags throughout 2021 to show us how remarkable the year was for temperature extremes. "The fact is that we've now kind of moved into a new regime ... this is likely the warmest decade in many, many hundreds, maybe 1000s of years," says Gavin Schmidt, director of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies. "There's enough change that it's having impacts locally."

In North America, those local impacts included epically bad summer heat, even for typically cool regions. In late June and early July, the Pacific Northwestern US and Western Canada struggled with record-smashing temperatures that buckled roads and melted power cables. In the desert further south, California's Death Valley reached a blazing 130 degrees Fahrenheit (54.4 degrees Celsius) in July, potentially breaking the world record for the hottest temperature ever recorded on the planet -- for the second year in a row. Across the Atlantic, Europe experienced sweltering heat, too. A reading of 119.8 degrees Fahrenheit (48.8 degrees Celsius) in Sicily might have broken the European record for maximum temperature. (The World Meteorological Organization is still working to vet those records.) All told, July 2021 was the hottest month humans have ever recorded, according to NOAA.

Heat trapped in the world's oceans also reached record levels in 2021, according to research published this week. Ocean heatwaves are likely twice as common now as they were in the early 1980s, and they can be devastating for marine life and coastal communities. They kill coral, take a toll on fishing and crabbing industries, and can even make droughts worse onshore. Temperatures might have been even hotter in 2021, were it not for a La Nina event. La Nina is a recurring climate phenomenon defined by cooler-than-average waters in the eastern equatorial Pacific, which has predictable effects on weather patterns worldwide.


By fermion • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
Where I live has only been popular for the past 70 years, with air conditioning and cheap power. It was possible to build houses , with windows and trees, to make it tolerable in the summer, but I think now it is too hot, days between 80-105. Parts of the US is dealing with this now, light rail that has to be halted in high heat. People already spending all their money on rent, with no money for air conditioning. In other parts of the world it is worse. Where there is no infrastructure, where everything is open. In one place I stay it was a reliable 50-80 degrees. Now there are 100 degree days, with hot nights too. It has a lot of arable land, but not a lot of water. This is the kind of disaster we are looking at. People who have a productive life, being forced to the city, or just destitution.


By PopeRatzo • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Where I live has only been popular for the past 70 years, with air conditioning and cheap power. It was possible to build houses , with windows and trees, to make it tolerable in the summer, but I think now it is too hot, days between 80-105. Parts of the US is dealing with this now, light rail that has to be halted in high heat.

In Houston, they're building houses with windows that don't open because you have to air condition 11 months of the year anyway. And they're building those new houses out of the flimsiest of materials because nobody expects to be able to live there in 15 years. When Hurricane Harvey hit, a lot of the worst destruction was of these cardboard and plastic houses. And even in the home of the petroleum industry, the energy prices are higher and more volatile than California. It's not a place you want to settle down.

Many of the new residents to that part of Texas readily admit that they're just there to make some quick money and then get the hell out. To be fair, the place has long been a toxic swamp without zoning laws or drainage, and the refineries and chemical plants just to the East burst into flames on a monthly basis. I think South Texas from Galveston to Houston is going to be the poster child of the coming environmental catastrophe. It's a damn shame because the people and culture there are terrific. They deserve better.


Well, the engineer says...

By BobC • Score: 3 • Thread could be that we've gotten better at measuring "hot"!


By OngelooflijkHaribo • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

What are you expecting, that every year is hotter than the last? This year was the sixth hottest on record, and the last eight were the eight hottest. — That's certainly quite dramatic and more than I expected.

Every year being hotter than the last would be quite something.

Then we'd better get hot

By cascadingstylesheet • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Then we'd better get hot (badum ching) and go full nuclear. Oh, and figure out technological solutions like carbon sequestration.

We pretend to care about this, but we won't do what it takes to address it.

World's Largest Fish Breeding Grounds Found Under the Antarctic Ice

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
sciencehabit shares a report from The most extensive and densely populated breeding colony of fish anywhere lurks deep underneath the ice of the Weddell Sea, scientists aboard an Antarctic research cruise have discovered. The 240 square kilometers of regularly spaced icefish nests, east of the Antarctic Peninsula, has astonished marine ecologists. "We had no idea that it would be just on this scale, and I think that's the most fantastic thing," says Mark Belchier, a fish biologist with the British Antarctic Survey and the government of South Georgia & the South Sandwich Islands, who was not involved in the new work.

In February 2021, the RV Polarstern -- a large German research ship -- was breaking through sea ice in the Weddell Sea to study marine life. While towing video cameras and other instruments half a kilometer down, near the sea floor, the ship came upon thousands of 75-centimeter-wide nests, each occupied by a single adult icefish -- and up to 2100 eggs. "It was really an amazing sight," says deep-sea biologist Autun Purser of the Alfred Wegener Institute, who led the ship's underwater imaging. Sonar revealed nests extending for several hundred meters, like a World War I battlefield scarred by miniature craters. High-resolution video and cameras captured more than 12,000 adult icefish (Neopagetopsis ionah). The fish, which grow to about 60 centimeters, are adapted to life in the extreme cold. They produce antifreezelike compounds, and -- thanks to the region's oxygen-rich waters -- are among the only vertebrates to have colorless, hemoglobin-free blood.

Including three subsequent tows, the team on the RV Polarstern saw 16,160 closely packed fish nests, 76% of which were guarded by solitary males. Assuming a similar density of nests in the areas between the ship's transects, the researchers estimate that about 60 million nests cover roughly 240 square kilometers, they report today in Current Biology. Because of their sheer numbers, the icefish and their eggs are likely key players in the local ecosystem. [...] The vast colony, the researchers say, is a new reason to create a marine protected area in the Weddell Sea, an idea has been proposed five out of the past 6 years to the intergovernmental treaty organization that regulates fisheries there.

Tough fishing

By Rosco P. Coltrane • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Maybe the fish colonies thrive there because it's one place where fishing vessels can't come and overfish the shit out of that entire region of the ocean.

For now

By The Evil Atheist • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
Not for much longer.

Yahoo Tells Japan Employees They Can Work Anywhere, Commute By Plane When Necessary

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
Yahoo Japan is telling its 8,000 employees they can work anywhere in the country -- and even be flown into work when the job requires it -- bucking the trend of companies looking to return workers to offices in the third year of the coronavirus pandemic. The Japan Times reports: The program takes effect April 1 and allows employees to commute by plane, which wasn't previously an option, the company said in a statement Wednesday. While Yahoo is best known for its internet portal in Japan, it's a unit of SoftBank Group's Z Holdings, which also owns the Line messaging app and PayPay mobile payments service. Ninety percent of the company's employees are now working remotely, according to President Kentaro Kawabe, who tweeted that an overwhelming majority of them said their performance has held steady or improved at home. "So we're allowing Yahoo employees to live anywhere in Japan. This doesn't mean we're denying the benefits of the office -- you'll be able to fly in when needed," he added.

Yahoo is setting a commuting budget of $1,300 per month per worker and lifting its previous daily cap. In-person communication will still be encouraged as the initiative is also aimed at bolstering morale and well-being, with social gatherings to be subsidized by [$44] per employee a month. The company has had an "office anywhere" remote work system in place since 2014, however it had capped the number of work-from-home days before the virus took hold to five days a month.

It's available but...

By klipclop • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
Having had the pleasure of working in Japan for a few years, I know from first hand experience that the work culture is the worst. Employers treat you like crap, and they promote incompetent people simply based on seniority. They are very inefficient workers, and managers use social pressure to come in early and leave late for no reason. They also have endless after work drinking parties that no one wants to attend but feel obligated to (lest they become an outcast). Japanese employers also impose forced transfers where employees are expected to upend their life as well. (normally resulting in the family staying behind). I think back when employers had lifelong employment, they felt empowered to abuse their employees. I sure hope that yahoo is offering these perks in good faith and not actually going to highly discourage or punish employees who actually use it.

Jack Dorsey Announces Bitcoin Legal Defense Fund

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
Former Twitter CEO and Block founder Jack Dorsey has announced plans to create a "Bitcoin Legal Defense Fund" with Chaincode Labs co-founder Alex Morcos and Martin White, who appears to be an academic at the University of Sussex. CoinTelegraph reports: The announcement was sent on a mailing list for Bitcoin developers, bitcoin-dev, at 13:45 UTC on Wednesday from an email address appearing to belong to Dorsey. The announcement stated the fund will help provide a legal defense for Bitcoin developers, who are "currently the subject of multi-front litigation." "Litigation and continued threats are having their intended effect; individual defendants have chosen to capitulate in the absence of legal support," the email stated, referencing open-source developers who are often independent and, therefore, susceptible to legal pressure.

The announcement went on to describe the Bitcoin Legal Defense Fund as a "nonprofit entity that aims to minimize legal headaches that discourage software developers from actively developing Bitcoin and related projects." "The main purpose of this Fund is to defend developers from lawsuits regarding their activities in the Bitcoin ecosystem, including finding and retaining defense counsel, developing litigation strategy, and paying legal bills," it stated. Initially, the fund will include volunteers and part-time lawyers for developers to "take advantage of if they so wish," although, the email also states that "the board of the Fund will be responsible for determining which lawsuits and defendants it will help defend." According to the email, the fund's first project will be to take over the existing defense of Ramona Ang's "Tulip Trading Lawsuit" against developers for alleged misconduct over access to a Bitcoin (BTC) fortune.

I smell something fishy

By beepsky • Score: 3 • Thread
Why would a fascist authoritarian who loves excessive iron fisted control over everybody support a decentralized cryptocurrency?
Something is going on, and I don't like the smell of it

Carmakers Launch Desperate Attempt To Delay Massachusetts Right-to-Repair Law

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Gizmodo: Major car manufacturers aren't giving up on their efforts to stymie Massachusetts' right to repair legislation. Less than two years after residents in the state voted in favor of updated right to repair laws that would let independent auto repair shops receive telematics data from vehicles, groups representing auto manufacturers are now introducing their own new proposals that would delay the law's implementation. If passed, the two new proposals, first viewed by Motherboard, would push back the starting date of Massachusetts' right to repair law to 2025, three years later than the original 2022 start date. Though supporters of the proposal argue the extra years would give automakers more time to comply with the laws, the efforts were derided by critics like Massachusetts Right to Repair Coalition Director Tommy Hickey.

"Massachusetts consumers have spoken, and the law now gives them the right to control their own repair data so that they can get their car fixed where they want," Hickey told the Gloucester Daily Times. "However, instead of listening to their customers and attempting to comply with the ballot initiative, automakers and dealers filed a baseless, anti-democratic lawsuit." For those unaware, Massachusetts' 2020 law was intended to make it easier for small auto shops to access diagnostic data about vehicles without the need for proprietary tools available only to manufacturers. When the law goes into effect, The Drive notes, it would require any automaker doing business in the state to allow this telematics data to be accessible through a smartphone app.

The auto industry has argued making such tools more widely available could come with cybersecurity and vehicle safety risks, though that line of argument has often come across as more akin to fearmongering than actual concern for consumers' well-being. (One ad paid for by the Alliance for Automotive Innovation tried to convince viewers a sexual predator could use vehicle data to stalk and prey upon their victims). Industry groups representing carmakers even went as far as to file a lawsuit in U.S. District Court arguing the law was unconstitutional. The ruling on that suit has yet to be determined.


By the_other_one • Score: 3 • Thread

Back in my day we had carburetors not computers... No chip delays to get a car either... ahh the good old days...


By speedlaw • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread
I had to replace a headlight on a Benz because deer. The light had to be married to the car, so they have to use a specific computer, which communicates to GERMANY, to marry the light module to the car... To replace a headlight. This legislation is way overdue.

Re:Whose freedom is it anyway?

By sjames • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Because your right to swing your fist ends at my nose.

Or we could go with truth in advertising and require that any car that does not support right to repair shall be marketed as disposable.


By sconeu • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

VW has to "pair" the battery with the car. You can't replace your own battery any more.

Re: Then take the "cyber" garbage OUT!

By e3m4n • Score: 4, Informative • Thread
Some of the PITA aspects come from certain unreleased codes in order to do maintenance. Ive seen something as simple as brake pad maintenance become dealership only because it required a special instruction sent to the BCM just to rewind a motor so you can expand the calipers enough to install the brakes. That turns a $35 do-it-yourself or $99 pep-boys repair into a $400 stealership repair. Eventually, years later, we discover what Vag Com codes to send, but until that info gets leaked or reverse engineered, you are at the mercy of the stealership. With a TDI something similar happens if you let your AdBlue (DEF) counter reach under 25. If flat tells you that it will not start again once you turn it off. Normally one doesnt let it get that low but sometimes an error could result in a warning only 200mi before that point and you happen to be in the middle of a road trip that exceeds 200mi. If it does hit the red warning its a must-tow situation. Even if you add the fluid after.

More Than 1 Million Fewer Students Are In College, the Lowest Numbers In 50 Years

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
More than 1 million fewer students are enrolled in college now than before the pandemic began. NPR reports: According to new data released Thursday, U.S. colleges and universities saw a drop of nearly 500,000 undergraduate students in the fall of 2021, continuing a historic decline that began the previous fall. Compared with the fall of 2019, the last fall semester before the coronavirus pandemic, undergraduate enrollment has fallen a total of 6.6%. That represents the largest two-year decrease in more than 50 years.

The nation's community colleges are continuing to feel the bulk of the decline, with a 13% enrollment drop over the course of the pandemic. But the fall 2021 numbers show that bachelor's degree-seeking students at four-year colleges are making up about half of the shrinkage in undergraduate students, a big shift from the fall of 2020, when the vast majority of the declines were among associate degree seekers. Graduate program enrollment, which saw an increase in the fall of 2020, declined slightly, down by nearly 11,000 in the fall of 2021. Overall, enrollment in undergraduate and graduate programs has been trending downward since around 2012, but the pandemic turbocharged the declines at the undergrad level.
"The easiest assumption is that they're out there working," says Doug Shapiro, who leads the research center at the National Student Clearinghouse, where the new data comes from. "Unemployment is down. The labor market is good. Wages are rising for workers in low-skilled jobs. So if you have a high school diploma, this seems like a pretty good time to be out there making some money."

"It's very tempting for high school graduates, but the fear is that they are trading a short-term gain for a long-term loss," Shapiro says. "And the longer they stay away from college, you know, life starts to happen and it becomes harder and harder to start thinking about yourself going back into a classroom."

Re:Colleges are Pricing Themselves Out of Reach

By wakeboarder • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

A lot of the rising cost is hiring more administrators:

Higher education also has no reason to lower costs:

International students

By mkwan • Score: 3, Insightful • Thread

Most of that is probably just international students who found it too difficult to enter the US during the pandemic.

College is a waste of time and money for most.

By PJ6 • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
I say that coming from an Ivy League school so make of it what you will, but honestly I think most of the jobs in this country don't benefit at all from a college degree.

Even my degree, I didn't use it. It just opened doors. Which is actually kind of terrible.

That whole "trading a short-term gain for a long-term loss" is nonsense. Who needs such a huge debt starting out in life? It's like kicking them in the face.

Re:In a country with 54% illiteracy. No wonder.

By nadass • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
Great link! Here's another look (US Dept of Ed literacy map, by county)

Don't flip a coin to choose your school or degree

By raymorris • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

> you'll by lucky if all you owe is $60,000 in loans and don't have the same degree as thousands of others competing for the hundreds of jobs in that field.

Lucky? I didn't choose my degree field, or my school, by luck, by flipping a coin. I chose them *on purpose*.

I *decided* to go to the top-3 school that costs less than $10,000 all-in. Nothing lucky about it. It's called being a little bit responsible and actually paying attention before spending $100,000.

Fortnite Sneaks Back Onto iPhone By Way Of GeForce Now

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
It's been 518 days since Apple kicked Fortnite off of the App Store after Epic Games tried to bypass its payment system. Now the popular free-to-play battle royale is once again playable on iPhones, sort of. From a report: Starting next week, Fortnite will be available on iOS by way of streaming, as part of an upcoming closed beta for Nvidia's GeForce Now game streaming program. "Fortnite on GeForce NOW will launch in a limited-time closed beta for mobile, all streamed through the Safari web browser on iOS and the GeForce NOW Android app," Nvidia announced on its blog today. "The beta is open for registration for all GeForce NOW members, and will help test our server capacity, graphics delivery and new touch controls performance."

GeForce Now, subscriptions for which range from free to $200 a year for the premium tier, lets users stream games they already own to PCs, tablets, and smartphones. It's one way to make blockbuster PC games portable, or to play them on rigs with beefier specs than the ones people already have at home. In Fortnite's case, GeForce Now subscribers will soon be able to stream the shooter to iOS devices and play it using touch controls via Apple's Safari. The browser workaround is one way companies like Microsoft have been able to get their game streaming platforms on iPhones despite Apple's ban on allowing them inside its App Store. Now its bringing back the game that kicked off a massive, messy, year-long legal battle that's still raging to this day.

Good Luck...

By ELCouz • Score: 3 • Thread
You are streaming the PC version. So mobile against angry keyboard gamers...absolutely no chance! Plus,,, hello stream delay.

In other words ...

By fahrbot-bot • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

It's been 518 days since Apple kicked Fortnite off of the App Store ...

It's been 37 Fortnights ...

Epstein-Barr Virus Found To Trigger Multiple Sclerosis

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Scientific American: A connection between the human herpesvirus Epstein-Barr and multiple sclerosis (MS) has long been suspected but has been difficult to prove. Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is the primary cause of mononucleosis and is so common that 95 percent of adults carry it. Unlike Epstein-Barr, MS, a devastating demyelinating disease of the central nervous system, is relatively rare. It affects 2.8 million people worldwide. But people who contract infectious mononucleosis are at slightly increased risk of developing MS. In the disease, inflammation damages the myelin sheath that insulates nerve cells, ultimately disrupting signals to and from the brain and causing a variety of symptoms, from numbness and pain to paralysis. To prove that infection with Epstein-Barr causes MS, however, a research study would have to show that people would not develop the disease if they were not first infected with the virus. A randomized trial to test such a hypothesis by purposely infecting thousands of people would of course be unethical.

Instead researchers at the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health and Harvard Medical School turned to what they call "an experiment of nature." They used two decades of blood samples from more than 10 million young adults on active duty in the U.S. military (the samples were taken for routine HIV testing). About 5 percent of those individuals (several hundred thousand people) were negative for Epstein-Barr when they started military service, and 955 eventually developed MS. The researchers were able to compare the outcomes of those who were subsequently infected and those who were not. The results, published on September 13 in Science, show that the risk of multiple sclerosis increased 32-fold after infection with Epstein-Barr but not after infection with other viruses. "These findings cannot be explained by any known risk factor for MS and suggest EBV as the leading cause of MS," the researchers wrote. In an accompanying commentary, immunologists William H. Robinson and Lawrence Steinman, both at Stanford University, wrote, "These findings provide compelling data that implicate EBV as the trigger for the development of MS." Epidemiologist Alberto Ascherio, senior author of the new study, says, "The bottom line is almost: if you're not infected with EBV, you don't get MS. It's rare to get such black-and-white results."

"Epstein" & "Barr"??

By Sebby • Score: 3 • Thread

Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is the primary cause of mononucleosis

Wow, not good to be in Trump's circle.


By ceoyoyo • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

I collaborated briefly with Ascherio a few years ago. The link between EBV and MS was very unpopular in the MS research world; Ascherio has been keeping the idea alive for a couple decades. A colleague and I had a paper the big bosses wouldn't let us publish and we were talking to Ascherio about ways to get more evidence.

The idea has been getting more play lately, particularly since a pharma company has run a trial of a drug that targets EBV infected cells. I'm glad to see Ascherio is having some success too.

China To Create Own NFT Industry Based on State-backed Blockchain Infrastructure

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
China's state-backed Blockchain Services Network (BSN) plans to roll out infrastructure at the end of this month to support the deployment of non-fungible tokens (NFTs), a major step to creating a Chinese NFT industry that is not linked to cryptocurrencies. From a report: Although Beijing has banned cryptocurrencies, He Yifan, chief executive of Red Date Technology, which provides technical support to BSN, told the South China Morning Post that NFTs "have no legal issue in China" as long as they distance themselves from cryptocurrencies like bitcoin. The infrastructure, named the BSN-Distributed Digital Certificate (BSN-DDC), to differentiate it from crypto-transacted NFTs, will offer application programming interfaces for businesses or individuals so they can build their own user portals or apps to manage NFTs. Only Chinese yuan is allowed for purchases and service fees. "NFTs in China will see annual output in the billions in the future," He said in an interview.

Let me know ..

By PPH • Score: 3 • Thread

.. when this comes on the market as an NFT.

January 6 Committee Subpoenas Social Media Giants In Probe of Capitol Attack

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
The House select committee investigating the deadly Capitol riot has subpoenaed social media giants Twitter, Reddit and the parent companies of Facebook and Google, the panel's chairman said Thursday. CNBC reports: The select committee had asked a trove of records last summer from those and other social companies, but received "inadequate responses" from four of the largest platforms, according to a press release Thursday. The committee is once again demanding that Google parent company Alphabet, Twitter, Reddit and Meta -- formerly known as Facebook -- hand over a slew of records relating to domestic terrorism, the spread of misinformation and efforts to influence or overturn the 2020 election.

"Two key questions for the Select Committee are how the spread of misinformation and violent extremism contributed to the violent attack on our democracy, and what steps -- if any -- social media companies took to prevent their platforms from being breeding grounds for radicalizing people to violence," Chairman Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., said in the press release. "It's disappointing that after months of engagement, we still do not have the documents and information necessary to answer those basic questions," Thompson said. "The Select Committee is working to get answers for the American people and help ensure nothing like January 6th ever happens again. We cannot allow our important work to be delayed any further."


By quonset • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Why is this marked as a troll? I would expect people to care about the narrative, but maybe it is the wrong kind for them?

The narrative is Republicans who embraced white supremacy attempted to overthrow the U.S. government because they didn't like the outcome of the election. In response, they stormed the capitol in an attempt to capture and kill several elected officials including the Speaker of the House and the Vice President. It should be noted the Vice President had to hide in the loading dock of the capitol while the so-called president was admonishing him on social media for not overturning the election results.

Meanwhile, the insurrectionists were attacking police, including one who voluntarily went into the horde to protect someone who was having a medical emergency and was then in turn attacked and beaten.

This was on top of plans drawn up in an attempt to subvert the Constitution by lying about election results or claim there was "fraud" in the election or have states not allow elector votes to count, among other things. Not to mention, the National Guard was supposed to be ready to protect the insurrectionists on orders of the so-called president, but were instead held up for over four hours before allowed to assist police in putting down the insurrection.

That's the "narrative" the cowardly Republicans and their white supremacist allies keep trying to deny.

Re:Yay hypocrisy

By quonset • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

When conservatives riot, it's an "attack", "coup", "insurrection", "threat to our democracy" and so forth, but when liberals riot, like the BLM riots that went on for months, causing vastly more deaths and property damage than January 6, it's a "peaceful protest".

Because attempting to overthrow the United States government through violent measures, aided by members of one political party, is the same thing as protesting people are being shot solely because of the color their skin.

Yeah, totally in the same ball park. It's like saying the British burning the capitol is the same as the civil rights marches.

Re:Congressional priorities

By XXongo • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

What I find funny is everyone comparing this to 9/11. Reasonable people laugh and dismiss them as crazy, but I think it's important to take them at their word: they are admitting that they think people protesting and making them feel uncomfortable for a few hours is worse then 3000 of us commoners dying in a terrorist attack. It reveals a lot about their character.

No, they think that people attempting to violently overturn democracy in the United States are as bad as a terrorist attack.

I disagree, I think it's far worse.

not a Double Standard

By Anonymouse Cowtard • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
What about this, what about that. Did Antifa (actually a figment of the Right's imagination) or BLM try to overthrow a democratically elected government? What is so hard to understand about that? You try to portray the Capital rioters as just having a lark. The gallows were just a joke, geddit? No, it wasn't a joke. The punishment must fit the crime and some rioters will have their cherished freedumbs diminished for a good number of years.


By zeeky boogy doog • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
Oh please do explain what ELSE the 1/6 terrorists were doing. We all spent the whole day getting nothing done because we were watching the live news in disbelieving horror.

The traitor-in-chief spending two months feeding his cult the gigantic lie about his loss.

His 1/6 morning miniature Nuremburg Rally after which he sicced them on the capitol.

The mob at the capitol screaming "hang Mike Pence" because Pence refused to try and install loser Trump as dictator.

The endless looped clips of the Zip Tie Terrorist.

Seeing Officer Goodman leading the mob away from unlocked doors to the chambers and most likely saving multiple Senators' lives in the process.

Hearing the reports that the terrorists had planted bombs in Democratic lawmakers' offices.

Hearing that one of the terrorists had been shot after the mob corners lawmakers in a room, after the bodyguards REPEATEDLY screamed "if you enter this room you will be shot."

We saw every sordid, horrible moment of the lowest point our once-great democracy has ever reached, as a cult of moron terrorists disrupted the peaceful transfer of power for the first time in our nation's history at the behest of a psychopathic narcissist monster.

Then in the following days, weeks, months, we started seeing that it was far more than just an attack by a mob of angry dumbasses. We found out about how the preparations and response had been deliberately crippled and slowed down. We found out the obvious signs that there was an orchestrated plan to maximize the change that they would succeed at murdering our elected officials on live national TV, because this would give the traitor-in-chief his excuse to declare martial law and seize power. We found that the "advisors" visiting him had explicit plans to do this written down when they visited the White House.

There is only one thing you need to know to know who was responsible for this travesty: When it became apparent that the Capitol was being attacked, the President was not IMMEDIATELY evacuated to a secure undisclosed location.

Ground Temperatures Hit 129F as Argentina Suffers Blackouts

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Ground temperatures climbed above 129 degrees Fahrenheit (54 degrees Celsius) in parts of Argentina this week as the country suffers through a shockingly hot start to summer. Air temperatures were equally suffocating, leading to widespread blackouts as the Southern Cone attempts to beat the heat. From a report: Copernicus's Sentinel 3 satellite recorded the extreme ground temperatures. Those temperatures are different than air temperatures, which is our usual way of conveying how hot a place is. The surface of the Earth tend to be hotter than air temperatures, given that heat can more easily dissipate in the air. But air temperatures are still pretty unbearable in Argentina. On Tuesday, temperatures rose to 106.7 degrees Fahrenheit (41.5 degrees Celsius) in Buenos Aires, the second-highest reading in the city in more than 100 years of records. Other parts of the country saw temperatures as high as 113 degrees Fahrenheit (45 degrees Celsius). The heat was so bad in Argentina on Tuesday that it was briefly the hottest place in the world, surpassing parts of Australia that usually have that honor during austral summer. "This is a heat wave of extraordinary characteristics, with extreme temperature values ââthat will even be analyzed after its completion, and it may generate some historical records for Argentina temperatures and persistence of heat," meteorologist Lucas Berengua told Reuters.


By ArchieBunker • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Totally normal patterns.


By spun • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Some people would rather fuck the Earth and everything on it than admit they are wrong, and someone they despise was right.

Ground temperatures are not air temperatures

By wakeboarder • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

129F Seems excessive, but I want to know the air temperature not the ground temperature, because that is what's reported on the weather apps. The ground is normally hotter than air in sunny conditions, because sunlight is directly heating the surface of the earth. The further you back away from from the earth the cooler it gets. Most air temperature measurements are taken in sheds that are at eye level for most people and a few feet off the ground, they do this so that ground temperature effects contribute less to the measurements. A satellite is picking up infrared radiation directly from the ground.

Re:Ground temperatures are not air temperatures

By Gravis Zero • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

129F Seems excessive, but I want to know the air temperature not the ground temperature

Actually, ground temperatures should concern you because this is what will cause massive crop failures.

Asia's Richest Man Plans To Invest $76 Billion in Green Projects

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
The conglomerate led by Mukesh Ambani, Asia's richest man, announced plans to invest $76 billion toward clean energy projects, dwarfing an earlier commitment of $10 billion by the world's biggest fossil-fuel billionaire. From a report: Reliance Industries, controlled by Ambani, has signed pacts with the state government of Gujarat for a total investment of 5.96 trillion rupees ($81 billion), according to an exchange filing Thursday. Of this, about 5 trillion rupees would be used over the next 15 years to build 100 gigawatts of renewable power projects and a green hydrogen network while 600 billion rupees will be for factories making solar modules, hydrogen electrolyzers, fuel cells and storage batteries, the filing said. The remaining sum is to be spent in the retail-to-refining group's new and existing projects, including the upgrade of its telecom network for 5G services and expansion of its consumer retail businesses. Reliance has already "started the process of scouting land" for its renewable energy power projects and has requested the Gujarat administration for 450,000 acres (182,110 hectares) in the arid Kutch region. Though the investment pact is just a memorandum of understanding right now, it outlines the scope of Ambani's green ambitions and is a big step up from the $10 billion investment over three years he had announced in June. Ambani is in the midst of transforming his fossil fuel-fed empire and pivoting it toward green energy and digital technology.

Invest - so he expects getting his money back

By jellomizer • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

The thing with green projects is that over time they become far more valuable then projects that consume more resources.
Say buying an Electric Car and paying 10k more for over an equivalent Ice car, that you plan to use for 10 years.
The cheaper ICE car, needs to be filled with Gas over its life span you are spending close to 20k to fill up with gas, while you may spend 5k over 10 years to charge it. Giving you a net 5k in savings.

Or if you sustainable lumber where the trees can grow back before you finish cutting down original ones down. So you don't need to keep buying new land over and over again.

The key thing that rich people have over the poor, is they can afford to spend more upfront to save in the long run, while the poor, have to spend more over time, because they need the low upfront cost.

Bold move, that's 90% of his net worth

By Khopesh • Score: 3 • Thread
Wikipedia cites Ambani as having a net worth of US$90 billion as of 2021-12-02. Then again, if this $81B investment doesn't pan out, I'm sure he can liquidate it and get back at least some small percent of it, and even if he can't reclaim a dime, he'd still be left with US$9B plus whatever golden parachute he has when Reliance Industries lets him go.

Re:Here's something useful rich fucks can do

By WoodstockJeff • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

If you could read anything more than the talking points you were given, you would probably find that a shitload more than "fair share" was sent to a number of government units, where it did nothing but keep a bunch of bureaucrats financed while they picked their asses.

He certainly paid more than you did.

Fine print

By Areyoukiddingme • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

Of this, about 5 trillion rupees would be used over the next 15 years to build 100 gigawatts of renewable power projects and a green hydrogen network...

Yeah no. It's a fossil fuel company. A "green hydrogen network" is a fig leaf for hydrogen via steam reformation of natural gas, which will be the vast majority of the output. Reliance Industries isn't about to give up their massive investment in oil and gas. They're just going to hide it better. Greenwashing is too easy.

Adhole, the Massive Public Pi-hole Instance, Shuts Down

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
segaboy81 writes: I've been running Pihole for years (for myself), but this guy was running one for everybody! Since 2017, those not so savvy who still wanted the experience of Pi-hole, could turn to That is, until now. is shutting down, citing issues with maintenance and stability

Re:But it's EASY!

By Sique • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
You have to be able to set up a server, to administer a server, install a service on that server and administer that service.

This is something you have to be a professional or at least a dedicated hobbyist for.

To use Pi-Hole via, you just have to ask someone else to change your internet settings once. This is a lot easier.

Care to tell us WTF *-hole is about ?!?

By dargaud • Score: 3 • Thread
If the blurb gives no idea what the subject is about, I'm even less inclined to RTFA...


By TWX • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

Really? They shut their Pi-hole?!

Re:Care to tell us WTF *-hole is about ?!?

By I've Got Three Cats • Score: 5, Informative • Thread
Pi-hole is a raspberry pi based DNS server that blacklists ad and malware sites. Hook it up to your home network and you have LAN wide blacklisting. Never heard of, but it seems to me it basically has the server in the cloud instead of on a local raspberry pi.

Re:But it's EASY!

By dnaumov • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

This is something you have to be a professional or at least a dedicated hobbyist for.

Dafuq? All you have to do is buy a Pi, download and write the image to SD, answer a few questions and modify your DNS in the router.

What you just wrote would entirely fly over the heads of 95%+ of all computer users.

Dafuq, indeed.

Second Life Founder Returns To Revamp His Original Metaverse

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader shares a report: The metaverse isn't a new concept. Not only did Neal Stephenson coin the idea in 1992, but some of us were literally living in virtual spaces with virtual currency and virtual storefronts nearly 20 years ago. The virtual place many people went back then was Second Life. Philip Rosedale, Second Life's founder, has decided to task a core team to work on evolving Second Life now that the metaverse has become a buzzword yet again. His hopes are that developing community-focused worlds like Second Life will solve some metaverse problems that aren't necessarily being solved in VR headsets... yet. After Second Life, Rosedale became focused on VR technology in 2013, co-founding a company called High Fidelity that promised high-end, low-latency VR. But High Fidelity started to pivot from VR to other technologies over the last few years, focusing on spatial audio most recently.

In 2019, Rosedale published a goodbye of sorts to VR, stating that VR hadn't reached a form that was good enough for most people to want to use. Talking with him over Google Meet in 2022, he still feels that way, calling VR headsets a blindfold to the real world that only some people feel comfortable enough to use. Rosedale thinks VR headsets could hit an iPhone moment, but maybe not for another few years. In the meantime, he's shifting focus to a metaverse platform that doesn't require headsets: namely, Second Life. He isn't the only person to feel this way: Even VR/AR software companies like Spatial have recently pivoted away from VR headsets as a way to reach more people.


By RoccamOccam • Score: 4, Funny • Thread
In my second life I was also a paper salesman and I was also named Dwight. Absolutely everything was the same except ... I could fly.

Re:Neal Stephenson

By HiThere • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Even that wasn't the first. Think of "The Eden Cycle". Or if you don't need novel length, try E.M.Forester "The Machine Stops"

Or in movies you might consider "The Forbidden Planet". (I think "monsters from the id" count as virtual.) Or Arthur Clarke "The City and the Stars". Several variations of things there. Clarke gave virtual objects physical properties and vice versa in a tight interlock.

Or E.E. Smith "Skylark Three" et seq. where he called virtual images projections. Though he usually tied them tightly to something actually physical happening somewhere else until near the end of "The Skylark of Valeron". I'm sure I've missed lots of instances.

Second Life is still alive

By presearch • Score: 3 • Thread

A lot of the riff-raff element is gone now and those users that remain are now 10 or 15 "years old".
SL contains countless hours of 3D work, perhaps the largest collection ever assembled,
and it would be a shame to see it disappear in favor of Meta's Disney/cartoon/children's world.

Not surprised that Rosedale is worming his way back in, but he's the reason that it turned into kind
of a sewer back when. Anything for a buck. What's troubling is if they bring in blockchain, unnecessarily.

And Rosedale really didn't "build" squat. CTO Cory Ondrejka was the chief architect, and a genius.
I hope that they can lure him back. He knows what the difficult issues really are and has insight to solve them.

He was at Facebook for a while, but Zuck is too dim to understand what Cory was telling him.


By Photo_Nut • Score: 3 • Thread

I'm curious to hear the Slashdot profile on Roblox -- an actually successful metaverse that has captured so much of America's youth.

What About Linden Dollars?

By careysub • Score: 3 • Thread

From Wikipedia:

Residents may purchase L$ directly through the Second Life viewer, or by logging into the website and using the Lindex Exchange. The ratio of USD to L$ is a floating exchange rate depending on supply and demand; As of June 2017, exchange rates average approximately L$252/US$1. Linden Dollars can be purchased and sold on the Lindex at the current market rate, or residents can set their own limit to get a better exchange rate. However, limit orders may take longer to be fulfilled than market rates. Between June 2008 and June 2017, the rate has remained stable with a high of L$270/US$1 and a low of L$240/US$1.

Linden dollars seem to have one characteristic essential in a real currency that all cryptocurrencies lack -- stability of value. Maybe there is an opportunity here for Second Life.

OTOH, they could just jump into the crypto swamp and issue LindenCoin.

Game Maker Says Apple, Google Selling Rip-offs in New Lawsuit

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
The maker of the popular game "PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds" says in a new U.S. lawsuit that a Singapore-based company made rip-off versions of its game, and Apple and Google have refused to stop selling them. From a report: Krafton alleged Monday in a Los Angeles federal court complaint that Garena Online's "Free Fire" games copy several copyrighted aspects of PUBG: Battlegrounds, including its game structure and in-game items, equipment, and locations. Released in 2017, Battlegrounds was one of the first and most successful "battle royale" games, a popular genre that now includes "Fortnite" and "Call of Duty: Warzone." Korea-based Krafton's complaint said Battlegrounds has sold more than 75 million copies. The complaint said Garena, owned by Singapore-based Sea Ltd, began selling Free Fire through Apple and Google's app stores in 2017, and started selling another infringing game called "Free Fire MAX" last year. According to Krafton, Apple and Google have distributed hundreds of millions of copies of the Free Fire games. The complaint says Garena generated more than $100 million in revenue from Free Fire sales in the U.S. in the first three months of 2021. Krafton also named Google's YouTube as a defendant for allegedly hosting videos of Free Fire gameplay, as well as a Chinese film that Krafton says is a live-action dramatization of its game.

Re:Is there even a case here?

By UnknowingFool • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

PUBG is claiming copyright on "in-game items, equipment, and locations" according to the summary" which is fine for Game structure" would be a stretch for me. I have not seen these Free Fire games to know if they are straight up copying assets. PUBG's previous lawsuit against NetEase however showed that PUBG's idea of "copying" was very liberal. This analysis of the complaint detailed PUBG's somewhat ridiculous claims that guns used in NetEase's Rules of Survival were "copies" even though both games used different CG models for the same gun. The claims boiled down to "these guns look similar" even though there are only so many ways you can model a Tommy gun, an AK-47 etc which are real world guns. The guns were not exact copies but similar representatives of the same gun. Now if someone modeled a BFG from Doom or Halo's Needler, that is a different story as those guns are unique to those games.

Second what is Google and Apple supposed to do again? Generally stores (real and digital) do not remove things unless the copying is just blatant.

Crypto-Savings Lawsuit Puts Principles of DeFi To the Test

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
The emerging world of decentralized finance offers the holders of cryptocurrency many of the amenities of a modern financial system, under the premise that blockchain technology can cut out the middlemen, replacing flesh-and-blood bankers with autonomous, self-governing computer programs. The model promises lower costs and greater access. It also begs the question: Who's responsible when things go wrong? From a report: That is the question being raised by a class-action lawsuit filed in New York federal court against one such novel DeFi service, a cryptocurrency savings application called PoolTogether. The application, described as a "no loss prize game," incentivizes users to save their cryptocurrencies by offering them the chance to win awards from the interest generated by the collected funds. The lawsuit, filed by a software engineer named Joseph Kent, has challenged the legality of PoolTogether's operation, saying the scheme is essentially a lottery and prohibited under New York law.

Although Mr. Kent's lawsuit, supported by two plaintiffs' law firms, is nominally focused on winning a potentially large pot of financial damages, it also appears to be a deliberate effort to put some of the DeFi community's core doctrines to the test. A former technology lead for Sen. Elizabeth Warren's 2020 presidential campaign, Mr. Kent is described in his lawsuit as someone "gravely concerned" at the prospect that cryptocurrency, which consumes voluminous amounts of electricity, could contribute to climate change, besides enabling bad actors to circumvent financial sanctions. The size of the DeFi market has grown precipitously in the last year, bringing closer attention from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and other regulators. The total value of assets deposited as collateral on DeFi platforms climbed to more than $111 billion in November, up feverishly from about $10 billion at the beginning of 2020, according to DeFi Pulse.


By bobm • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

I'm curious how the interest would work? With a bank it's assumed that my money is loaned out to people who pay interest for using it (simplified) but if this is just a coin storage facility where does the interest come from?

In case you were wondering why there are so many

By waspleg • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

crypto stories. this is the company that owns slashdot they do business to business crypto "bartering" in what appears to be a thinly veiled attempt at dodging taxes.

Who responsible when things go wrong in defi?

By hdyoung • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
Nobody. Nobody is responsible for anything. That's the whole point of defi. Everybody is a gun totin' rootin' tootin' libertarian I-follow-no-rules anarchist cowboy. The only laws that apply are the ones that you can enforce by trickery or violence. It's all very attractive to a certain type of person, until that person gets their life savings yoinked away by someone smarter than them. Then, suddenly, they start whining. "where's my due process...". In their most high-pitched, nasally, child voice.

Which is why none of the smart/big money will be in it. Centralization has it's advantages.

Microsoft Has Discontinued All Xbox One Consoles

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Microsoft has stopped manufacturing all Xbox One consoles. The software giant originally discontinued the Xbox One X and digital Xbox One S ahead of the Xbox Series X launch, then quietly stopped manufacturing the Xbox One S at the end of 2020, leaving retailers to sell out their remaining stock. From a report: "To focus on production of Xbox Series X / S, we stopped production for all Xbox One consoles by the end of 2020," says Cindy Walker, senior director of Xbox console product marketing, in a statement to The Verge. Microsoft's confirmation comes just as a Bloomberg report suggested Sony had planned to end PS4 production at the end of 2021, but that the company will now manufacture around a million PS4 consoles in 2022. Sony has confirmed PS4 production is still ongoing, amid struggles by both Microsoft and Sony to meet demand for their latest Xbox Series X and PS5 consoles.

Unless you have money to burn, get Xbox Series S

By Echoez • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

We got one here for Christmas, and it's been great. I'm sure there are some features of the Xbox Series X that maybe we're missing, but even on our 4K TV, it looks and performs amazingly. It's small, fast, quiet. Games start and/or resume super quickly. And it was available! For $300! Who knows what we're missing, but all we play here is Madden, Halo Infinite and Fortnite, and it's amazing on our 55" TV.

I don't know if there is a place for continuing to make Xbox One in the current market. The Series S is essentially that.


By tgeek • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

New for Nerds?

Stuff that doesn't matter....

If you believe news regarding a popular video game console's availability doesn't qualify as "news for nerds" you may want to reconsider your definition of "nerd". It may not be matching everybody else's definition . . .

Someone needs fired and kicked in the nuts

By ThurstonMoore • Score: 3 • Thread

The person who named the last two generations of MS consoles needs fired and kicked in the nuts. They're the most confusingly named products ever.

Deep Learning Can't Be Trusted, Brain Modeling Pioneer Says

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
During the past 20 years, deep learning has come to dominate artificial intelligence research and applications through a series of useful commercial applications. But underneath the dazzle are some deep-rooted problems that threaten the technology's ascension. IEEE Spectrum: The inability of a typical deep learning program to perform well on more than one task, for example, severely limits application of the technology to specific tasks in rigidly controlled environments. More seriously, it has been claimed that deep learning is untrustworthy because it is not explainable -- and unsuitable for some applications because it can experience catastrophic forgetting. Said more plainly, if the algorithm does work, it may be impossible to fully understand why. And while the tool is slowly learning a new database, an arbitrary part of its learned memories can suddenly collapse. It might therefore be risky to use deep learning on any life-or-death application, such as a medical one.

Now, in a new book, IEEE Fellow Stephen Grossberg argues that an entirely different approach is needed. Conscious Mind, Resonant Brain: How Each Brain Makes a Mind describes an alternative model for both biological and artificial intelligence based on cognitive and neural research Grossberg has been conducting for decades. He calls his model Adaptive Resonance Theory (ART). Grossberg -- an endowed professor of cognitive and neural systems, and of mathematics and statistics, psychological and brain sciences, and biomedical engineering at Boston University -- based ART on his theories about how the brain processes information. "Our brains learn to recognize and predict objects and events in a changing world that is filled with unexpected events," he says. Based on that dynamic, ART uses supervised and unsupervised learning methods to solve such problems as pattern recognition and prediction. Algorithms using the theory have been included in large-scale applications such as classifying sonar and radar signals, detecting sleep apnea, recommending movies, and computer-vision-based driver-assistance software.

[...] One of the problems faced by classical AI, he says, is that it often built its models on how the brain might work, using concepts and operations that could be derived from introspection and common sense. "Such an approach assumes that you can introspect internal states of the brain with concepts and words people use to describe objects and actions in their daily lives," he writes. "It is an appealing approach, but its results were all too often insufficient to build a model of how the biological brain really works." The problem with today's AI, he says, is that it tries to imitate the results of brain processing instead of probing the mechanisms that give rise to the results. People's behaviors adapt to new situations and sensations "on the fly," Grossberg says, thanks to specialized circuits in the brain. People can learn from new situations, he adds, and unexpected events are integrated into their collected knowledge and expectations about the world.

Re:We know

By XXongo • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

We have seen what trust in machine learning gets us. People facing harsher prison sentences because of their race, medical issues missed, ...

But these are the identical flaws that non artificial intelligence has. When humans make the decisions, people face harsher prison sentences because of their race, medical issues are missed, etc.

What you should be saying is, "we shouldn't trust the AI to do better at these tasks than the humans that have trained it."

...The fact that we can't know how they make a decision, we can't ask them to examine the process they use, is a huge problem.

But likewise for humans: humans are terribly unreliable when we ask them to explain the processes they use in making everyday decisions. "It's a gut feeling I have" is a response approved by hundreds of books telling you to trust your instincts, but these "gut feelings" are also conditioned by prejudices, both overt and invisible.

Have to look that one up

By alleycat0 • Score: 4, Funny • Thread
"Grossberg -- an endowed professor" - I don't think this word means what I thought it meant.

Re:This part stood out:

By xwin • Score: 4, Informative • Thread
From my personal experience with ML models, they do behave like a child for the most part. Very limited child, concentrated on one task, but a child. The model only can recognize an object from a list of the objects that it knows. If it does not recognize the object it may think that it is another object that it knows. Small children do exactly that. If they know a dog but don't know a cow, they will call a cow a dog. Even adults do that with say a type of a plant. They will recognize a plant of the type they dont know, as a different plant of the type they do know.
ML networks are very good in a controlled environment, where unexpected inputs do not come up. They should not be dismissed as useless. You can populate a PCB by hand but yet we use pick-and-place machines. These machines require input to be in reels and separated by parts and have limits on parts they can place. Yet we use them because they are much faster and more accurate even with all the restrictions they have. Same with ML.
Now ML research is going into teaching the model to "not recognize" an object. To say - I dont know what this is. This turned out to be much harder task than one can expect.
No disrespect to that professor, but he is pushing a theory that he invented and thinks that it is better than existing ML. When the software that is based on his theory can perform a useful task, he would have a much better ground to stand on.

So what?

By groobly • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Is Grossberg just following in the footsteps of Hubert Dreyfus?

Deep learning, or any "neural net" learning is just a mathematical model that tries to make predictions based on a way to understand data. Huge strides have been made in making it work where it does work.

Ultimately, deep learning or neural nets in general, like many other AI algorithms, work by finding ways to divide up very high dimensional spaces in ways that have predictive value. They are in general no better than the generality of their training set, and always far worse because no one really know how well they have divided up a million-dimensional space.

Just because idiots (i.e. suits) follow the fad of thinking deep learning is the be-all end-all of AI, doesn't mean that their ignorant view is a new enlightenment from god. Deep learning is just a very good and very very smart algorithm that works if you have a HUGE amount of data to train on. That's it. Nothing more. Getting to AI will take a lot lot more.

We have all these problems with people too

By aldousd666 • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
Show me a human who isn't vulnerable to the same things... sure we only train for one thing at a time now, largely because we can combine lots of deep learning networks together, each serving as an 'expert' on it's area. But we don't need to get them to be perfect... they just have to make fewer mistakes than people, which is a lower bar than you might think.

The PC Market Just Had Another Big Year Thanks To Pandemic Demand

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
The PC market experienced its first big growth in a decade during 2020, when the pandemic began to force people to work and learn from home. Market research firms Gartner and IDC are now reporting that the worldwide PC market has grown again throughout 2021, as demand for traditional PCs continued during a global chip shortage. From a report: Nearly 340 million PCs were shipped in 2021, according to Gartner. That's a nearly 10 percent increase over the already unprecedented numbers seen in 2020. IDC puts the figure at 348.8 million, up nearly 15 percent. "2021 has truly been a return to form for the PC," said Jitesh Ubrani, a research manager at IDC. "Consumer need for PCs in emerging markets and global commercial demand remained strong during the quarter with supply being a gating factor." Ongoing supply issues relating to a global chip shortage mean the PC market "could have been even larger than it was in 2021," according to Tom Mainelli, an executive at IDC. Gartner reports that 2021 saw the highest shipment volume of PCs since 2013, after a 2017 milestone of five years of PC decline.

PC's and mice live,

By Tablizer • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

so let's stop making "mobile first" UI's a priority. Real GUI's are the pinnical of productivity UI's, not shit like Bootstrap. Git off my lawn, Bootie! For one, let's form a stateful GUI markup standard so we don't need bloat-loads of buggy JavaScript to get normal and common GUI idioms across networks. Stop letting fadsters set our damn standards, they are hit-and-run.

Other Factors

By 4pins • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

the pandemic began to force people to work and learn from home

Other Factors:

  • AMD CPUs sometimes beating Intel's in performance
  • Intel finally on 10nm (for 2021, primarily in laptops)
  • Nvidia's huge (roughly 2x) leap in GPU performance
  • AMD almost catching up with Nvidia in raw GPU performance (but not features)
  • Apple switching architectures (and doing it as well as I have ever seen)
  • A crypto currency renaissance
  • People needing to play from home

It has been a great two years of computer products,if you could get your hands on them. After a decade of just using hand-me-downs from work, I've bought two macs and built a PC.

Re:What is a PC?

By jellomizer • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

I guess you can classify PC as personal computers, Tablets and Phones probably don't make the cut, because you rent them, and cannot do whatever you want with them. Unlike a PC, where you can clear out and install whatever OS you want with what ever software for good for for ill.

Study Finds Cannabinoids Prevent COVID-19 Infection

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
MachineShedFred shares a report from Forbes: Compounds in cannabis can prevent infection from the virus that causes Covid-19 by blocking its entry into cells, according to a study published this week by researchers affiliated with Oregon State University. A report on the research, "Cannabinoids Block Cellular Entry of SARS-CoV-2 and the Emerging Variants," was published online on Monday by the Journal of Natural Products. The researchers found that two cannabinoid acids commonly found in hemp varietals of cannabis, cannabigerolic acid, or CBGA, and cannabidiolic acid, also known as CBDA, can bind to the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19. By binding to the spike protein, the compounds can prevent the virus from entering cells and causing infection, potentially offering new avenues to prevent and treat the disease.

"Orally bioavailable and with a long history of safe human use, these cannabinoids, isolated or in hemp extracts, have the potential to prevent as well as treat infection by SARS-CoV-2," the researchers wrote in an abstract of the study. The study was led by Richard van Breemen, a researcher with Oregon State's Global Hemp Innovation Center in the College of Pharmacy and Linus Pauling Institute, in collaboration with scientists at the Oregon Health & Science University. Van Breeman said that the cannabinoids studied are common and readily available. "These cannabinoid acids are abundant in hemp and in many hemp extracts," van Breemen said, as quoted by local media. "They are not controlled substances like THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana, and have a good safety profile in humans."

Van Breemen added that CBDA and CBGA blocked the action of emerging variants of the virus that causes Covid-19, saying that "our research showed the hemp compounds were equally effective against variants of SARS-CoV-2, including variant B.1.1.7, which was first detected in the United Kingdom, and variant B.1.351, first detected in South Africa." [...] Although further research is needed, van Breemen noted that study shows the cannabinoids could be developed into drugs to prevent or treat Covid-19. CBDA and CBGA are produced by the hemp plant as precursors to CBD and CBG, which are familiar to many consumers. However, they are different from the acids and are not contained in hemp products." Van Breeman also noted that the research showed the cannabinoids were effective against new variants of the virus, which he said are "one of the primary concerns" in the pandemic for health officials and clinicians.

Re: Oblig XKCD

By jobslave • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

CBD oil isn't going to get you, me or anyone of any age stoned.

Correction: cannabinoids don’t block entry

By 93 Escort Wagon • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

The COVID virus just stops caring about whether it gets into the cell or not. Then it orders a pizza.

Screw that nonsense

By AndyKron • Score: 3 • Thread
Smoke weed, be happy. Screw the rest of that nonsense, get vaccinated instead

Chill Out

By skam240 • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

Now CBD oil is gonna be the next craze among the "anything-but-the-vaccine" crowd.

Hey, maybe they'll go all in on weed instead. Then maybe they'll chill the fuck out and just get the damn shots.

Re:Oblig XKCD

By TheRealMindChild • Score: 5, Informative • Thread
Who the hell modded this up? Were there ever any legit studies saying that Ivermectin or Hydroxychloroquine worked in vivo at levels that are safe for humans?

In Vivo: In microbiology, in vivo is often used to refer to experimentation done in a whole organism, rather than in live isolated cells

Your link: Conclusion Chloroquine is effective in preventing the spread of SARS CoV in cell culture

Get your lies out of here

AI Unmasks Anonymous Chess Players, Posing Privacy Risks

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
silverjacket shares a report from [A]n AI has shown it can tag people based on their chess-playing behavior, an advance in the field of "stylometrics" that could help computers be better chess teachers or more humanlike in their game play. Alarmingly, the system could also be used to help identify and track people who think their online behavior is anonymous. [...] To design and train their AI, the researchers tapped an ample resource: more than 50 million human games played on the Lichess website. They collected games by players who had played at least 1000 times and sampled sequences of up to 32 moves from those games. They coded each move and fed them into a neural network that represented each game as a point in multidimensional space, so that each player's games formed a cluster of points. The network was trained to maximize the density of each player's cluster and the distance between those of different players. That required the system to recognize what was distinctive about each player's style.

The researchers tested the system by seeing how well it distinguished one player from another. They gave the system 100 games from each of about 3000 known players, and 100 fresh games from a mystery player. To make the task harder, they hid the first 15 moves of each game. The system looked for the best match and identified the mystery player 86% of the time, the researchers reported last month at the Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NeurIPS). "We didn't quite believe the results," says Reid McIlroy-Young, a student in Anderson's lab and the paper's primary author. A non-AI method was only 28% accurate. [...] The researchers are aware of the privacy risks posed by the system, which could be used to unmask anonymous chess players online. With tweaks, McIlroy-Young says, it could do the same for poker. And in theory, they say, given the right data sets, such systems could identify people based on the quirks of their driving or the timing and location of their cellphone use.

I have been doing that for years

By nospam007 • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

Apparently each time I lost, the other player was some guy named 'Fritz'.

Better to detect cheaters

By Laxator2 • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

With the COVID lockdown it was always assumed that chess players are not affected, they can play on-line as well as over-the-board.
However, speaking to a few players (2000-2300 ELO range) they all complain about the number of cheaters on platforms like Lichess.
Many of them have moved from 10min + 5sec rapidplay format to 3min + 0s blitz simply because it is harder for cheaters to play in that format.
The cheaters input the opponent's moves into some chess engine and then play the engine's reply against the opponent.
Even a free chess engine you can get on a phone can play at grandmaster level.
On the 3min + 0sec format at least you have a chance to win on time against a cheater.
Catching cheaters would be a much better use of AI than de-anonymising human players.

Re:Is this an Onion article?

By john83 • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
Not really. It's more interesting from the wider perspective of data science increasingly making privacy much harder. For example, I recall an article on a similar process that could identify people from an MRI. That means that an anonymised database of MRI - which is more or less essential in light of current privacy laws for medical research - isn't really as anonymous as you'd wish. I play chess. In practical terms, this might be useful to elite players in identifying anonymous accounts of rivals who are trying to quietly experiment with some new ideas. Highly niche, certainly, but not useless. In the longer run, it might be the sort of direction that allows us to write software that can analyse my games and tell me what kind of mistakes I make, or even develop a custom training programme for me. That could be more generally useful, and it would be proof of concept to try doing this for more analogue activities.

Re:Is this an Onion article?

By Joce640k • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Does anyone seriously care about whether anonymous chess play can be fingerprinted by AI?

Not really but it can probably be used to identify AnonymousCowards as well. That could be a bit more serious, eg. if governments start sending dissenters to prison based on anonymous online writings.

PS: "We didn't quite believe the results" - oh, really? I'd have been far more surprised if this couldn't identify people.

Re:Better to detect cheaters

By john83 • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

Lichess does use software to detect cheaters. I know of several kids who had accounts banned for that reason; one of them even admitted to cheating afterwards. They look at what's called average centipawn loss. The metric chess computers use to evaluate a position is measured in units of pawns, i.e. all else being equal, if I'm a pawn up, it's +2 and if I'm two pawns down it's -2. The evaluation functions are fairly subtle, considering positional features too. The traditional (pre-AI) computer algorithms were minimax algorithms: each move by white aimed to maximise this metric, and each move by black aims to minimise it. If you take the computer's evaluation of a position before and after I move, I will have played a non-ideal move frequently. The drop in evaluation is called the centipawn loss (i.e. in units of 0.01 pawns). A top level player might have an average centipawn loss of 10 per move. An amateur like me will be higher. A cheater will be lower. Hence, we can detect cheaters. You can get lucky over a game or two, but if you're consistently playing computer moves, you'll be detected. And yes, there are strategies to avoid detection, but they involve leaning on the computer less with obvious disadvantages.

I don't really get cheating at it. Wow, your computer is good at chess. Who fucking cares? I bet your car can beat me or even a top class runner in a race too.

Expect Sonic Booms In Central Florida As Falcon 9 Booster Lands At Cape Canaveral, SpaceX Warns

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
SpaceX is set to launch a Falcon 9 rocket Thursday from Florida's Space Coast with a scheduled booster landing back at Cape Canaveral, which means there could be sonic booms heard in the area. From a report: As the first stage of the Falcon 9 booster plummets back to Earth just under 10 minutes after launch, it creates shockwaves that make a thunderous sonic boom -- which can be heard across Central Florida depending on weather conditions. Usually SpaceX lands its Falcon 9 booster out at sea. But for this launch of a handful of commercial and scientific payloads, the company is directing the rocket booster back to Cape Canaveral.

The mission will launch southward, a departure from usual eastward launches. It's the second of a planned five polar launches heading southward just this month. While there weren't any issues with wayward boats or planes for a launch last week, SLD 45 is asking boaters and pilots to continue to pay attention to new hazard areas issued for this launch. "These trajectories are different," said [Lt. Col. Brian Eno, Commander of the 1st Range Operations Squadron]. "We must make sure that we're vigilant as a community on reviewing those notices. SpaceX's Transporter-3 mission has a 29-minute launch window which opens Thursday at 10:25 a.m. ET. Space Fore forecasters said there's a 70 percent chance of favorable launch weather.

Not new

By necro81 • Score: 3 • Thread
Maybe it is timely, but this is hardly news. SpaceX has landed boosters at the Cape before (called a Return to Launch Site (RTLS)), and they cause sonic booms each time. In fact, for at least one launch of the Falcon Heavy, both boosters returned, creating multiple sonic booms.

Another Success for SpaceX

By techmage • Score: 3 • Thread

SpaceX keeps racking up the wins. This one was special though as I have my first free flying orbital satellite in space because of this flight.

Sorry (not sorry) for the shameless plug.

Re:Another Success for SpaceX

By EvilSS • Score: 5, Funny • Thread
Congratulations! That's really cool.

Oh wait, this is /. Give me a minute... I think I remember how this is supposed to work here.. Ahem... "So you put more useless space junk into orbit on a useless rocket trip that is destroying the environment!? You and Elon are the worst thing since sliced Hitler!"