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Scientists Find Rats Aren't Smarter Than Mice, and That's Important

Daetrin That seems odd (154 comments)

"You might think that mice and rats would be basically the same when it comes to these kinds of things" [About training the two species]

It doesn't seem like it makes much sense to believe that rats and mice are different enough for one species to be measurably smarter than the other, but not to also believe that they're different enough to have different behavior patterns and responses to various stimuli.

5 days ago
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Prosthetic Hand Capable of Delivering Texture Sensations

Daetrin Re:Phantom pain (30 comments)

Please don't take this wrong, but i took a quick look at your comment history and between that and what you've posted here you're sounding an awful lot like a friend i used to know. At first i thought she was just a little odd, but it turned out that she actually had some serious problems and some pretty bad stuff ended up happening because of it. If you really believe the things you're saying i think you should really consider talking to someone. I expect you'd be resistant to the idea of going to a psychiatrist, but perhaps you have friends or family you can discuss these concerns with?

And if i'm just feeding a troll... oh well.

about two weeks ago
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Prosthetic Hand Capable of Delivering Texture Sensations

Daetrin Well duh (30 comments)

"A new prosthetic system allows amputees to feel familiar sensations and also, somewhat unexpectedly, reduces their phantom pain."

This seems like one of those things that people might very reasonably not think of ahead of time but which seems blindingly obvious in retrospect. It would probably be expected that if you managed to reattach a severed limb that there wouldn't be any phantom pain afterward. ("Real" pain during the healing process yes, and perhaps lingering aches as one might have with any injury, but not phantom pain.) You'd also expect the same to hold true if you managed to grow a new arm and attach it properly.

But a simple prosthetic isn't enough to prevent or cure phantom pain. So one would expect that at _some_ point in the process between no nerve connections with a peg leg (or equivalent) and full connection with a regrown/reattached limb that the phantom pain would disappear. I guess they just encountered that point earlier than they might have expected.

about two weeks ago
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Living On a Carbon Budget: The End of Recreation As We Know It?

Daetrin Re:Lots of cheap carbon stuff (652 comments)

You originally said "And children tend to do much better with two parents actively involved in raising them to adulthood, everything else equal." and "I would suggest that children should be a choice made by a man, and a woman together in mutual agreement whenever possible."

When it was pointed out that two women or two men could be the two parents who are actively involved in raising the children, your argument gradually morphed into "Lesbians have no ability to relate to male children in a way a dad can. Gay dads have no ability to relate to girls on their period for the first time."

This is called "moving the goalposts."

(And as an aside, you also said "THIS is sociological issues, and while not unique to Gay / Lesbian couples, affects all of them." Which is entirely untrue. Some gay couples have only male children, and some lesbian couples have only female children. And given the way in which such couples have children it is even pretty trivial to choose the genders of their children if they wish. I'm not saying they should, just that your argument that it affects "all of them" is totally unfounded.")

However to address those shifty goalposts, as far as i can tell you are basing this argument entirely on personal experience. I'm sorry if you felt your childhood was less than ideal because you didn't have a male role model, but that doesn't apply to everyone else.

I'm male and i definitely related far more closely to my mother than i did to my father, perhaps because my dad spent so much time at work. (He spent plenty of time with us during the periods when he was home so it's not like we felt neglected. I was quite happy with my childhood and as far as i know the same is true of my sister. However there's no denying that having to work to support your family means spending less time with that family.) My sister on the other hand was always arguing with my mom (and our mom told us that she always argued with her mom, and her mom told her that...) so it always seemed to me that she related much more to our dad.

Meanwhile i can't really tell any substantive differences between the son of my lesbian friends and the son of my heterosexual sister and brother-in-law. The first likes sports and video games. The second, last i checked, was into monster trucks and princesses. They're both _far_ more rambunctious than i remember being as a child (though clearly there could be some bias/rose colored glasses there) and both seem quite happy and well adjusted.

Maybe some differences will appear once they reach puberty, but i never had the "birds and the bees" talk with either of my parents. I learned all that stuff from sex ed classes at school and the internet, so i don't see why having a parent of the "appropriate" gender really matters. I honestly don't think it would have made a difference if both my parents had been women. Perhaps a girl would feel differently about having two male parents, but i can't really say anything in regards to that.

You say you think children deserve what's "best". How is not being born at all better than being born to parents of the "wrong" gender? Do you think any woman in a same-sex relationship who gets pregnant ought to immediately go get in abortion?

In short, everything i've observed has shown me that actual children of actual same sex couples can be just as happy and well adjusted as the actual children of actual heterosexual couples. That certainly isn't "proof", but it seems to me that it is a far more compelling argument than your theoretical opinions about people that you don't seem to have any actual experience with.

about two weeks ago
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Living On a Carbon Budget: The End of Recreation As We Know It?

Daetrin Re:Lots of cheap carbon stuff (652 comments)

You seem very concerned about the "biologic process". Please explain why this is so important to you. Which do you feel is more important, the biologic process or the social contract? You seem to be trying to switch tacks but you can't have it both ways.

If the biologic process is what is most important, then a single woman who decides to get pregnant by sperm donation, from a man who you've argued above was involved in the decision making process by the choice to donate sperm, will provide just as good an environment for the child as a married heterosexual couple. Because it's the biologic process that matters, not the social situation.

If the social situation is what's important, then please provide your argument as to why a same-sex couple is inferior to a heterosexual couple. And it better be a good argument because i have living proof that a same-sex couple can successfully raise children in a healthy manner just as well as a heterosexual couple while all you've done so far is state that it's "silly" to believe that.

In particular be sure to detail how a same-sex couple that can't (currently) have children without someone else supplying one or more of the gametes in inferior to an infertile heterosexual couple who can't (currently) have children without someone else supplying one or more of the gametes. Do you believe that heterosexual couples in which one or both members are infertile should not choose to have children?

about two weeks ago
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Living On a Carbon Budget: The End of Recreation As We Know It?

Daetrin Re:Lots of cheap carbon stuff (652 comments)

If the spouse hadn't agreed then they would not have had the children. How do you argue that she wasn't part of the decision making process?

Your original argument is that children are better off with two parents raising them. That is a matter of sociology, not biology. The "biology of 'choice'", whatever that is, is not relevant at all. The man consented to donate sperm. He was not involved at all in the social decision by the women to have and raise children as a couple.

about two weeks ago
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Living On a Carbon Budget: The End of Recreation As We Know It?

Daetrin Re:Lots of cheap carbon stuff (652 comments)

He was not involved in the decision making process that this couple made about having children. His choice to donate sperm was indeed a choice, but not a choice in the context in which you originally phrased the question: "I would suggest that children should be a choice made by a man, and a woman together in mutual agreement whenever possible."

The man was not there for the discussion. Yes he also made a decision prior to that and you could "technically" say he was therefore involved. However the grandparents also made the decision to have the kids who would become the parents, so you could technically say they were involved. And friends made the decision to introduce the couple to each other, so you could technically say they were involved. And if you keep extending the chain of causality to people who made a decision at some point that impacted the final decision to have the kids then technically the entire planet was involved.

So i would argue your "technically" argument is incorrect, and even if i'm incorrect about its incorrectness, it's still entirely beside the point.

about two weeks ago
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Living On a Carbon Budget: The End of Recreation As We Know It?

Daetrin Re:Lots of cheap carbon stuff (652 comments)

That's funny, i know a lesbian couple that got married and then had two kids. No man was involved in the decision making process. (Yes, a man donated sperm in each case, but if that man hadn't been willing there were plenty of others who would be, and those men weren't part of the decision making process. And pretty soon such families won't even need a sperm donor anymore.) It's a two income family (as most families around here are, regardless of whether they're hetrosexual or homosexual) but the parents spend as much time with the kids as they can and the kids seem to be doing pretty well.

So while i agree with some parts of your argument your foundation is built on quicksand.

about two weeks ago
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Possible Reason Behind Version Hop to Windows 10: Compatibility

Daetrin The Circle of Standards (349 comments)

Let's see if we can sum up this thread.

This is stupid! Why don't they have a standard way of doing things!?!
Standards have a way of biting you in the ass, for example this standard way of abbreviating the year.
It seems ironic that an abbreviated name was used for a problem caused by abbreviations.
But that's a perfectly normal abbreviation!
No it's not! This other system of abbreviation makes much more sense!
No, the first kind of abbreviation makes more sense in some contexts because of these reasons.

And so we have come full circle to why we can't just have one method of doing things, and thus why we can't have nice things.

Also, obligatory xkcd: http://xkcd.com/927/

about two weeks ago
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MIT Study Outlines a 'Perfect' Solar Cell

Daetrin Re:Carnot efficiency (110 comments)

Where are you getting the impression that the heat is going to be transferred to a liquid which will be used to perform work? Both the MIT page and the wikipedia page on thermophotovoltaics seem to indicate the conversion is pretty much straight from heat to electricity. The wikipedia page in particular uses the same heat engine equation as you but comes up with a result of 83%. I'm not sure what the difference is between their number and yours is, but even if your 70% is correct a 70% conversion into electricity is still a lot better than the 40% for regular photovoltaics that you cite.

about three weeks ago
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Robotic Taster Will Judge 'Real Thai Food'

Daetrin I've seen this episode before (103 comments)

A robot programmed to eliminate "unpure" food based on the standards set by a bunch of critics. In their arrogance the critics will have provided standards of purity that no food can match, and the robot will go wild, destroying all food everywhere.

Of course given that the end is inevitable, i for one welcome our new robotic food tasting overlords.

about three weeks ago
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Friendly Reminder: Do Not Place Your iPhone In a Microwave

Daetrin You'll be amazed! (240 comments)

Power companies hate Apple for this one weird trick!ï

about a month ago
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Microsoft To Buy Minecraft Maker Mojang For $2.5 Billion

Daetrin Re:An end to XBox? (330 comments)

Despite Microsoft supposedly saying that won't be the case, i'm more concerned that this will mean the end of Minecraft on PS3 and PS4. Either directly or through neglect. Microsoft may be behind in this console generation but they're definitely not out yet, and a "the only place where you can play the latest version of Minecraft" tagline might sell 100,000 or more extra consoles.

about a month ago
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Combating Recent, Ugly Incidents of Misogyny In Gamer Culture

Daetrin Re:Why "SJW"? (1134 comments)

Well even if we still haven't cleared up the mystery of the reason for the abbreviation, and despite the fact we clearly differ in opinion on the social issues involved, i thank and congratulate you for being the only person to respond to the original question in a reasonable manner with an attempt at an actual explanation (albeit with some confusion and fumbling around on both our parts before arriving at that point.)

Although it's a little sad that in this case an AC is setting the standard that so many of the pseudonym users ought to be aspiring to.

about a month and a half ago
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Combating Recent, Ugly Incidents of Misogyny In Gamer Culture

Daetrin Re:Why "SJW"? (1134 comments)

See my above response. It's not the name i disagree with. (I disagree with the assumptions behind it, and it seems a bit over the top, but it's a reasonably adequate name for its purposes.) It's the choice to consistently use the acronym instead that seems bizarre to me.

Saying "I don't like people who are enthusiastic about rape threats" doesn't sound paranoid. However if a bunch of people started going on about the "RTEs" and questioning what the RTEs were responsible for and if the RTEs had submitted this slashdot article, etc. Well, that would sound both stupid and a little paranoid.

about a month and a half ago
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Combating Recent, Ugly Incidents of Misogyny In Gamer Culture

Daetrin Re:Why "SJW"? (1134 comments)

Though i disagree with your interpretations, that's a perfectly adequate description of how the name might have come about, however it does nothing to explain the choice at acronym-ize it.

I have heard people complain about the War on Drugs many times (and i often agree with those criticisms.) However i can't ever recall anyone complaining about the "WoD". Certainly not for the first reference to the name in any case. In contrast i've seen "SJW" used dozens or scores of times, but can't recall "Social Justice Warrior" being used at all except on the rare occasion to explain what SJW actually stands for. (Notably in your explanation above you just assumed everyone already knew what SJW stood for when you explained the derivation.)

So to get back to the original comment that prompted the question in this thread, why is it:
"Who are possibly outnumbered by professional victims and SJWs."

instead of:
"Who are possibly outnumbered by professional victims and social justice warriors."?

or to use your own definition, why not just:
"Who are possibly outnumbered by professional victims and militant misandric idiots."?

To me, #1 sounds stupid, #2 sounds a little hokey but okay, and #3 sounds perfectly reasonable (given the viewpoint of the person supposedly saying it.) I would certainly have gone with "militant misandric idiots" myself but would be boggled by the idea if anyone suggested abbreviating it to "MMI".

(I was originally going to suggest "militant misandric assholes" as an alternative, but then realized that if you tried to abbreviate that everyone would think you were talking about martial arts. Although perhaps choosing a term that can't be acronym-ized without confusion would be a good way to help prevent that from happening.)

about a month and a half ago
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Combating Recent, Ugly Incidents of Misogyny In Gamer Culture

Daetrin Re:Why "SJW"? (1134 comments)

You're right, that was a mistake on my part and i apologize. What i should have said was "Question, why do you (generally speaking) feel the need to lump many or all of the people who disagree with you together into one group [...]"

The "or all" part is because it's possible that the set of people that are, in general, included in the group "professional victims" is actually a subset of the group "SJWs". If that were the case my original question would still be correct, however since i don't know if that is the case or not the rewording is justified. Carry on.

about a month and a half ago
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Combating Recent, Ugly Incidents of Misogyny In Gamer Culture

Daetrin Re:Why "SJW"? (1134 comments)

Hmm,

#1: I never said that i've seen anyone on /. or any other forum say that rape or death threats are cool. I have seen people make such threats elsewhere, and perhaps it is a bit of jump to assume that the people who made those threats think that they are cool, but i think it's reasonable to believe so until proven otherwise. If you wish to debate the point however for the moment i will settle for "i mentally categorize everyone who makes rape or death threats into the same group."

#2: You specifically left out the bit immediately following the part you quoted, in which i clarified that i was not accusing anyone here "(and just to be clear, as far as i know that is not the exact same group as the people who like to use the term "SJW")".

#3: The part where you say that you do not take conversations on slashdot seriously (or at least that's my interpretation of your statement) and post here "only for fun": http://slashdot.org/comments.p...

So nice job troll, thanks for playing?

about a month and a half ago
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Combating Recent, Ugly Incidents of Misogyny In Gamer Culture

Daetrin Re:Why "SJW"? (1134 comments)

No, i have no problem with that. If you wanted to take everyone you currently lump under the label "SJW" and call them "misandrists" instead i would disagree with your definition, but i wouldn't think it sounded stupid. It's not that you disagree with those people and have a less than complimentary name for them, it's that the name you (collectively) chose sounds like it came out of a paranoid conspiracy. Why construct stupid sounding acronyms to make it sound like there's some organized group out to get you when there are so many other perfectly normal words you could use?

It's interesting that so far there have been over a half-dozen replies in this thread and there's been a lot of dodging the question (sometimes with insults thrown in, free of charge) but no actual attempt to explain why "SJW" seemed like a good idea at the time.

about a month and a half ago
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Combating Recent, Ugly Incidents of Misogyny In Gamer Culture

Daetrin Re:Why "SJW"? (1134 comments)

No, i got it all from three letters written by you, and the context of all the other people who have used those same three letters. I realize the definition is a bit redundant, but the group of people who use "SJW" to refer to people in a serious context just end up sounding well... to put it politely, "strange." My faith in humanity, battered though it may be, insists that they're not all just crazy and there must be some reason why they choose to do that, so what is it?

As for your knee, it sounds like you hurt it. I can say that in just six words because in this case i can say the first thing that comes to mind without sounding like i'm trying to insult you outright.

about a month and a half ago

Submissions

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T-Mobile Merging With MetroPCS

Daetrin Daetrin writes  |  about 2 years ago

Daetrin (576516) writes "Last year T-Mobile tried to merge with AT&T but the deal was blocked by the FCC. Now T-Mobile and MetroPCS have agreed to merge in a $1.5 billion deal. There doesn't seem to be much concern that the FCC will disagree with this deal, perhaps because the two companies combined will have a user base of 42.5 million, which will still be smaller than the #3 player Sprint Nextel's 56.4 million. Because the two companies have similar spectrum holdings T-Mobile claims the merger will allow them to offer better coverage. They also say they will continue to offer a range of both on and off-contract plans."
Link to Original Source
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Stardock Games Now On Steam

Daetrin Daetrin writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Daetrin (576516) writes "Seven months ago the sale of Impulse to GameStop was announced. Today Sins of a Solar Empire has been released on Steam with more Stardock games on the way. The games will also be coming to other digital distribution channels as well. Until now Stardock had kept quiet about any legal conditions attached to the sale of Impulse, so this is great news to those interested in Stardock's games but who aren't too fond of GameStop."
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Talk Like a Pirate Day Music

Daetrin Daetrin writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Daetrin (576516) writes "[Note to editors: Yes, i'm submitting this a day early, just to make sure you have time to see it.] Today is Talk Like a Pirate Day, and some people like to Sing Like a Pirate as well! You may already be aware of the Talk Like a Pirate music page which has a selection of songs including the official anthem by Tom Smith. More recently the Celtic musician Marc Gunn, under the pseudonym "Captain Black Jack Murphy" has produced an album of pirate music titled "Pogue Mahone Means Kiss My Arse!" and made free copies available. He encourages everyone to support piracy by copying the album and sharing it with their friends. Of course if you like what you hear you should donate at that page or buy some of his other music. This is how many Slashdotters say music ought to be done, so how well will it work in practice? (Beware though, these are (mostly) real sea shanties and drinking songs performed acoustically. If you prefer heavily produced music from the modern labels this is not for you! Also, a couple of the songs are definitely NSFW.)"
Link to Original Source
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Nintendo slashes profit forecast and 3DS price

Daetrin Daetrin writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Daetrin (576516) writes "Nintendo has announced a large loss for the first quarter of the year and lowered its annual profit forecast. In the three months prior to June 30th Nintendo lost 25.5 billion yen ($328 million) and the forecast is being reduced about 80%, from 110 billion yen ($1.4 billion) to 20 billion yen ($257 million.) Nintendo is blaming poor sales of the 3DS and is responding by announcing a price cut from $250 to $170 on August 12. In order to mollify early adopters of the system Nintendo also announced that anyone who has logged into the Nintendo eShop before the price cut will receive 10 free NES games and 10 free GBA games. The GBA games won't be available until later in the year, but Nintendo claims they will be exclusive to the "3DS Ambassadors" and will not be available for purchase on the store in the future."
Link to Original Source
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Asus Transformer Now Supports Game Controllers

Daetrin Daetrin writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Daetrin (576516) writes "E3 may not have started yet but there's already video game news from over the weekend. Asus has just released an update to add native support for game controllers to the Eee Pad Transformer, and it supports PS3 as well as 360 controllers. Engadget has a video showing the controllers in action. This is great news for fans of emulation on Android, even if you get emulators from an alternate source now."
Link to Original Source
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GameStop buys Impulse from Stradock

Daetrin Daetrin writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Daetrin (576516) writes "It was announced thursday that Stardock has sold Impulse, the digital game store, to GameStop. And no, it wasn't an early April Fools' joke. Stardock founder Brad Wardell gave an interview to Joystiq talking about the sale and the reasons behind it. GameStop also announced their acquisition of SpawnLabs, a game streaming company. It seems that GameStop is looking to challenge Steam, or at least avoid being cut out of the digital distribution business entirely."
Link to Original Source
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Google Debuts Dataing Site

Daetrin Daetrin writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Daetrin (576516) writes "Have you seen the Google Romance page yet? Particularly the tour? I'm not going to bother writing up a real summary since i'm not creative enough to come up the the right Tweaks, but i'm sure you could find some fun ways to use them while talking about Google's attempt to help us find love/contextualize romance/sell ads :)"
Link to Original Source
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Google's Gingerbread Man Has Arrived

Daetrin Daetrin writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Daetrin (576516) writes "Last weekend Google received the next statue in the sweets-themed series that commemorates the major updates of the Android OS. In the past this has meant that the release of the next SDK was right around the corner. However this time there's some doubt as to what the version number will actually be. Many sites (including Slashdot) have assumed that "Gingerbread" was synonymous with "3.0", but now there's some evidence that everyone may have jumped the gun and the next version will actually be 2.3."
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OCRemix no longer accepting new songs

Daetrin Daetrin writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Daetrin (576516) writes "The video game music remix site, Overclocked Remix has just announced the "OverClocked ReMixanator," which allows you to choose from among the most commonly remixed songs and apply your own preferred settings to have it produce a custom remix that is perfect for you! Unfortunately this means that human contributions are no longer necessary, and from this point on song submissions are no longer being accepted and all album projects have been canceled."
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Daetrin Daetrin writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Daetrin (576516) writes "Square-Enix has just held a press conference announcing the development of Dragon Quest 9: Defender of the Stars. The continuation of one of the most popular and influential series in Japan was no surprise, but in the past Dragon Quest has always been released on the most popular console of the day so many were surprised when it was revealed that the newest iteration will be on Nintendo's DS rather than the PS2 or a "next generation" console. Level 5 will be handling the actual development one again but there will be some big changes to the formula. The new game will be an action RPG instead of turn-based and up to four players will be able to play at once."

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