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Comments

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Billionaires Secretly Fund Vast Climate Denial Network

ApharmdB Re:Big deal... (848 comments)

You speak as though you are positive there is parity in the amount of funding and lack of transparency. I have not seen data to either support or refute that hypothesis so it seems like pure conjecture. I am aware of individual funders such as Al Gore and George Soros but two famous sources doesn't mean there is parity.

One can't prove a negative, someone will always say that you just haven't found it yet. But proving the positive is possible so if someone can, please do.

Note that a major goal of the groups discussed in the article is to generate a sense of false equivalency in public opinion such that nothing is ever done.

about a year and a half ago
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US Postal Service Discontinuing Saturday Mail Delivery

ApharmdB Re:one less day of junk mail (582 comments)

https://www.catalogchoice.org/ - I've been using the free part of the service for a while now and I get vastly less junk mail than I used to. Not having the extra volume to deal with is worth the time it takes to use the website.

about a year and a half ago
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Gabe Newell Reveals More About Steam Boxes, New Input Devices

ApharmdB Steam Box Server (218 comments)

From the Verge article: "For example, Valve intends to make Steam Box a server, which can serve games on multiple TVs around the home simultaneously. So you could purchase a single Steam Box and use it with multiple controllers for playing games on the different TVs around your home." I'd like this very much please, thank you. If I could share games in a steam account within a household that would be awesome. Currently, when I'm logged in and playing Game X from the account then no one can play Game Y. That's not any different than with consoles but you can buy multiple consoles. Buying multiple consoles solves the problem completely. Having multiple steam accounts with games split across them doesn't. You aren't going to have a separate steam account for each game. And then you still can have the issue of two desired-at-the-moment games being on the same account. And constant account switching. This is not a major issue, but it would be a very-nice-to-have.

about 2 years ago
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If Extinct Species Can Be Brought Back... Should We?

ApharmdB Do it for practice (299 comments)

We definitely should. We need to practice the technique. We'll need for ourselves someday. :)

about 2 years ago
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First Evidence That Some Insects May Rely On Photosynthesis

ApharmdB Re:helping address humanity's food crisis. (107 comments)

But it is a political problem that with an understanding of humanity (or a realistic/pessimistic opinion), one realizes humanity will never solve. So perhaps a technological, post-scarcity world created by technology is the only solution.

more than 2 years ago
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Higher Hard Drive Prices Are the New Normal

ApharmdB A reference point (268 comments)

I bought a "Western Digital Caviar Blue WD5000AAKX 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive" on Newegg in March '11 for $40. That was before the floods. I just bought another for $75. Ouch.

more than 2 years ago
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High School Students Sue Federal Gov't Over Global Warming

ApharmdB Re:kids are worried ... (491 comments)

I can't say for sure that your place of employment is like mine, but I know that similar perceptions are held by many were I work. These folks tell corporate that it is a waste of time to separate since it all gets combined. Corporate repeatedly tells them that it actually is getting recycled, the company is saving money by not having to pay trash hauling fees, and they give figures to prove it. The argument never gets resolved. But through my own observations I've noticed the following after being bothered by this myself.

1) Deposit bottles/cans - if placed in the more limited number of containers around the company they are picked up by special needs groups. Special needs folks do the pick-up giving them a job and they get the deposit money for the group's programs.
2) Paper recycling - the bins that the cleaning staff wheel around all look the same. I've realized that the staff often have 2 separate bins with them though you only may see one out your door when they stop by.

So while there may be some instances of the waste stream being combined, I'm pretty convinced at this point that the majority of it is properly recycled.

My advice if you think your employer is putting on a big charade just for looks is to ask the question - How much is the company saving on trash hauling by recycling? Ask the person or group in charge of facilities if the cleaners are actually separating. It may be that the cleaners are supposed to separate but don't because they are lazy. Or they do and you just can't tell. Ask questions, make a little noise and you can help get the situation resolved. Not everyone can be convinced, but if the recycling program is a farce you can make sure it becomes a real one.

more than 2 years ago
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Crowdsourcing and Scientific Truth

ApharmdB Re:Science as a social construct (62 comments)

Is the article author aware of how pervasive astroturfing is in the comments sections? Perhaps if the article is about a subject that no one has a financial or political interest in, comments sections could serve this way. But as soon as someone's got an interest to protect, you can't trust the comments to be anything other than posts made by paid people creating fake personas to do so. Slashdot has had articles about this type of astroturfing before.

more than 2 years ago
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A Planet Literally Boils Under the Heat of Its Star

ApharmdB Re:Holy cow ... (163 comments)

unless an H3 weighs 5000 tons

Ah ha! So that's why they get such bad mileage!

more than 2 years ago
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How Doctors Die

ApharmdB Re:Ken Murray's blog (646 comments)

I was commenting more on what I perceive to be the general intent of the "live life to the fullest" kinds of statements than on your specific phrasing. The reason they irk me is because I hear them most often in marketing - "live every day like its your last, eat out and get that big piece of chocolate cake for dessert!" The constant drone of the marketers has co-opted these statements and made them mean spend beyond your means. I agree that the good things to keep in mind are making sure to spend time with family, etc. As for plans, what I mean is that I would like to know if I'm going to kick the bucket at 55 of a heart attack or cancer. That way I would know I only need to earn enough to support myself until 55. Otherwise I might still be working at 55 thinking I need to support myself until 95. I'd be able to spend even more time with family, etc. that way. Not that I don't spend time with them now, but more is better with no limit.

more than 2 years ago
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How Doctors Die

ApharmdB Re:Ken Murray's blog (646 comments)

The reason that it is impossible to "live every day like its your last" is because of money. If someone has enough assets to spend every day checking things off a bucket list without having to earn any more money, more power to them. But the majority of the world has to keep working to earn the money to buy the food & shelter to keep themselves alive for the undetermined number of days they've got left as long as they don't starve or die of exposure. This isn't news to anyone, including you, but it always gets brushed aside when people suggest living every day TO THE EXTREME! If we all had a timer that told us how much time we had left, we could plan out our lives much more easily.

more than 2 years ago
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Google Announces One Pass Payment System

ApharmdB Credit card comparison (135 comments)

Who would have ever thought that the 1-3% service fee that credit cards take from retail & other transactions could be considered small? Kudos to Google & Apple for managing to make Visa & Mastercard look good.

more than 3 years ago
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Why Engineers Don't Like Twitter

ApharmdB Iranian Election Unrest (460 comments)

I used to think Twitter was useless for the same reason. (I am an engineer.) But the Green Movement put it to such good use during the Iranian election unrest that it makes me willing to put up with all of the insipid news stories (effectively retweets) about what stupid people have put on Twitter.

more than 4 years ago
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Obama's Mobile Phone Records Compromised, Shared

ApharmdB Re:Nice red herring (278 comments)

This is why politics stays corrupt. Both the parent and grandparent of my post defend the inexcusable actions of others when those actions help their side and profess moral outrage when the other side does the same thing. And they both get modded insightful by people that are defending their side.

Neither Joe the Plumber nor Barack Obama's records should have been compromised. To defend one instance while castigating the other is hypocritical.

But it is the nature of human grouping. People form groups and then expect their group to defend them when they have done wrong. If the group didn't, the group would not stay a group for long.

Personally I'm glad Obama's records were compromised because it might teach him the importance of taking privacy seriously. Hopefully then he will stop the warrantless wiretapping.

more than 5 years ago

Submissions

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Scientists create alternatives to DNA & RNA

ApharmdB ApharmdB writes  |  more than 2 years ago

ApharmdB (572578) writes "DNA & RNA are the basic building blocks of life. But could there be alternatives? Scientists have created HNA, CeNA, LNA, ANA, FANA and TNA in the lab. That is allowing for exploration of numerous questions such as 'What is the origin of DNA & RNA?' The journal article can be found here."
Link to Original Source
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Game Over: Terrorists Won

ApharmdB ApharmdB writes  |  more than 2 years ago

ApharmdB (572578) writes "Despite making a big stink that he would veto the bill, Obama has changed his tune and decided to sign the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act which contains provisions allowing for the indefinite detention of American citizens arrested on American soil. With his planned signing of the bill into law, the only hope left is the courts."
Link to Original Source
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Testing the media-A bad science reporting honeypot

ApharmdB ApharmdB writes  |  more than 3 years ago

ApharmdB (572578) writes "Slashdot commentators love them some "correlation!=causation". We also frequently gripe about the poor quality of science reporting by the media. A Guardian blogger from the mathematics department at Queen Mary, University of London has made a honeypot press release to see how bad it can get. (Or maybe to have some fun trolling the media?) The statistic used is the strong link between the number of mobile phone masts in an area and the number of live births. Of course, there is no causal link because they are both instead based on a 3rd variable, the local population size. Slashdot readers can keep on eye on news sources over the weekend to see just how much traction the story gets and watch the train wreck in real-time!"
Link to Original Source
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Ancient Ecosystem Found in Ice Pocket

ApharmdB ApharmdB writes  |  more than 5 years ago

ApharmdB (572578) writes "Beneath a glacier in Antarctica, scientists have discovered a community of microbes growing in frigid pools of salty water. It's a particularly tough environment, with no light, no oxygen, and extremely cold temperatures. But the microbes appear to live — and thrive — off a combination of iron and sulfur, according to a new study. The result of that strange metabolism is a brilliant red streak of cascading ice called Blood Falls."
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Fault line found under Yucca Mountain

ApharmdB ApharmdB writes  |  more than 7 years ago

ApharmdB (572578) writes "The plan for a spent nuclear fuel repository at Yucca mountain has been thrown for a loop. The believed known location of a nearby fault line was wrong and it has now been found to run directly under a storage pad in the planned facility. The state of Nevada has long opposed the project on geologic instability grounds (no pun intended), so what will this mean for the future of the facility?"

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