Tuesday, March 23, 2010

I Agree With the Vice President

The Great Commuter marks the occasion (language warning!):

Monday, March 22, 2010

Get Ready for the Annual Health Care Fight

Fred Barnes on why the health care wars are just beginning.

Rep. Paul Ryan: Obamacare is "about what kind of country we are going to be."

Ryan gets to the heart of the matter in laying out the case against the health care bill:

Thursday, July 23, 2009

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch

Somebody on the Dennis Miller radio show mentioned something about a giant floating garbage dump in the Atlantic which has collected due to ocean currents. I had to Wiki that one.

Turns out its true; they call it the "Great Pacific Garbage Patch," and it's estimated to be twice the size of Texas. If I understand correctly, it is largely bits of plastic, and has gradually formed because of ocean gyres, which are large scale vortexes created by wind and current patterns. Folks that study this estimate that 80% of it is from land-based rubbish, and 20% from ships.

Walter Mossberg on Migrating to Windows 7

Walter Mossberg, the venerable personal tech guy at the Wall St. Journal, likes the new Windows 7, which Microsoft is releasing on October 22nd. But while upgrading should be pretty smooth for Vista users, XP users like myself are out of luck:

While this latest operating system stresses simplicity, the upgrade process will be anything but simple for the huge base of average consumers still using XP, who likely outnumber Vista users. It will be frustrating, tedious and labor-intensive. In fact, the process will be so painful that, for many XP users, the easiest solution may be to buy a new PC preloaded with Windows 7, if they can afford such a purchase in these dire economic times.
Long story short, most XP users will have to temporarily move all of their data to some other backup system, reformat their hard drive, do a clean install of Win7, and then experience the sheer joy of reinstalling all of your hardware drivers, applications, and application patches. (This is where my strategy using multiple hard drives comes in handy, because I can nuke my C: drive, where my operating system lives, without destroying any of my data, which I keep on other drives.)

I'll be sticking with XP for as long as I can.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Robo-Ethicists Want to Revamp Asimov’s 3 Laws

From Wired News, a new look at Artificial Intelligence by "robo-ethicists.":

Two years ago, a military robot used in the South African army killed nine soldiers after a malfunction. Earlier this year, a Swedish factory was fined after a robot machine injured one of the workers (though part of the blame was assigned to the worker). Robots have been found guilty of other smaller offenses such as an incorrectly responding to a request.

So how do you prevent problems like this from happening? Stop making psychopathic robots, say robot experts.

“If you build artificial intelligence but don’t think about its moral sense or create a conscious sense that feels regret for doing something wrong, then technically it is a psychopath,” says Josh Hall, a scientist who wrote the book Beyond AI: Creating the Conscience of a Machine.

For years, science fiction author Issac Asimov’s Three Laws of Robotics were regarded as sufficient for robotics enthusiasts. The laws, as first laid out in the short story “Runaround,” were simple: A robot may not injure a human being or allow one to come to harm; a robot must obey orders given by human beings; and a robot must protect its own existence. Each of the laws takes precedence over the ones following it, so that under Asimov’s rules, a robot cannot be ordered to kill a human, and it must obey orders even if that would result in its own destruction.
Read more at Wired News.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

This is a Parody too, right?

I think this is a joke, like this one.

Sunday, January 04, 2009

"Stop Breaking Down"

Another video uploaded to my YouTube channel.