Comments by JayB

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Posted on December 28 at 2:09 p.m.

Sigh. Turing didn't invent the computer, he invented *Computer Science*. The movie, which gets the history, Turing's personality, and his accomplishments all wrong, gives nary a hint of this until the ending captions, where it still gets it wrong.

The Poles (while under German occupation), not Turing, invented the decryption machine (the bomba kryptologiczna; the British called theirs the bombe) ... Turing used his grasp of mathematical logic to make critical improvements to the design, necessary to deal with the complexities the Germans added to the Enigma. His design depended on a "crib" ... a piece of plaintext expected to be part of the message. It had to be figured out by cryptographers, who numbered in the thousands at Bletchley ... it wasn't "Heil Hitler" and it wasn't some flash of insight in a pub, with a bunch of Brits hugging each other as they would never ever do.

Turing was a thinker and a bit of a klutz, not a machine builder; the machines (plural) were made in a British factory, not by Turing and his team. Later, the U.S. Navy made much faster machines and supplied some to Bletchley.

Turing was a charming, likable fellow ... not a high-functioning autistic as portrayed.

The bombe was a special purpose machine ... nothing like the universal computing machines that Turing laid the mathematical groundwork for.

Turing had a lifelong fascination with Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, which probably explains his choice of suicide method, a poisoned apple, which was only obliquely hinted at in the movie.

Something else very important that the movie omits: After Christopher's death, Turing believed that he was still in contact with him, and wanted to understand how that was possible. (I think he later gave up that belief.) This led to his investigation into the nature of minds, and eventually to his realization that machines can potentially have minds and think just as humans can (the movie puts words in his mouth to the opposite effect). In his article "Computing Machinery and Intelligence", published in 1950, he estimated that it would be 50 years before computers could pass "The Imitation Game" and convince judges talking to them via teletypes that they were human. The problem is a lot harder than he thought.

On Review: <em>The Imitation Game</em>

Posted on November 14 at 3:04 p.m.

"97% of establishment funded scientists go with the establishment line."

Like that the Earth orbits about the sun and is 4.5 billion years old. Of course the fact that most "establishment" scientists agree with "established" science couldn't have anything to do with evidence and reason ... the stuff science is built on.

On Measure P Postmortem

Posted on November 14 at 2:59 p.m.

That post above is typical of denialist scammers (who go by ironic monikers). By "deniable accusations", Mann was talking precisely about the accusations of the deniers like "14noscams" and climatism. They have no interest in the truth at all. This is obvious and needs no explanation, although Mann did explain it at

On Measure P Postmortem

Posted on November 5 at 5:28 a.m.

" I still haven't seen evidence to dispute them. "

That's not how it works for intelligent people ... he has to provide evidence to support them. But they're all ridiculous lies.

On Measure P Protects Santa Barbara County’s Future

Posted on November 5 at 5:23 a.m.

The oil companies spent $7 million to fool stupid people. The Yes On P campaign had about $100,000, which is why you barely saw an ad or flyer from them. Those numbers alone should have been enough to inform any intelligent person how to vote.

On Measure P Protects Santa Barbara County’s Future

Posted on October 23 at 1:25 p.m.

If there is an outbreak of Ebola in the U.S. it will be because of Republicans, who have slashed public health budgets in their incessant drive to make their rich patrons richer and everyone else poorer. And the same people ho come here blabbering about "big government" are the first ones to complain of the consequences of insufficient government and societal resources ... consequences like the homeless.

On Santa Barbara's Ebola Scenario

Posted on October 19 at 6:42 a.m.

How droll that Sara Miller McCune says this is not an oligarchy as she spends her way to power, and absurdly blathers about "dictatorship" just because the mayor wrote an op-ed ... she LOST the vote. Anyway, anything that that Andy Caldwell is for, I'm against.

On Mayor Blasted for Alleged Conflict-of-Interest

Posted on October 5 at 11:44 p.m.

The opponents of Proposition P are corrupt sociopaths and generally bad people.

On Mail in voting begins October 6. What say you on Measure P?

Posted on October 5 at 11:01 p.m.

CalTrans is corrupt.

On Regarding 101 Widening Project

Posted on September 30 at 5:37 p.m.

Bill, you are such an awful ass.

Sorry for your loss, Starshine.

On Pray Tell: The Hocus Pocus of Happy Thoughts

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