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What Law Affects You Most

GrumpySimon Natural Selection! (273 comments)

..the cause of - and reason for - everything that's interesting in this world.

Thank you, Evolutionary Biology.

more than 6 years ago

Submissions

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GrumpySimon GrumpySimon writes  |  more than 6 years ago

GrumpySimon writes "Recently, a well-read science blog, Retrospectacle posted an article on a scientific paper. This blog post reproduced a chart and a table from the original article and everything was fully attributed. When the publishers, the mega-science publishing house Wiley found out, they subsequently threatened legal action unless the chart and table were removed. Understandably, this whole mess has stirred up quite a storm of protest, with many people seeing this as falling under fair use, and calling for a boycott of Wiley & Wiley's journals."
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GrumpySimon GrumpySimon writes  |  more than 7 years ago

GrumpySimon writes "New research has proven that subliminal messages may actually work. In a paper titled Attentional Load Modulates Responses of Human Primary Visual Cortex to Invisible Stimuli , Bahrani et al demonstrate that even though stimuli may not be available to consciousness, they are processed by the visual cortex. Whilst I'm sure that marketing agencies all over the world are rubbing their hands in glee at this news, the authors report that there's no evidence that this can make people buy things against their will, so with any luck the use of this in advertising will remain an urban legend."
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GrumpySimon GrumpySimon writes  |  more than 7 years ago

GrumpySimon writes "The recent 2.1.1 release of the popular blog software Wordpress was compromised by a cracker who made it easier for to execute code remotely. This is interesting because the official release was quietly and subtly compromised, and has been in the wild for a few days now. There's no word on if any affected sites have been compromised, but anyone running Wordpress is urged to upgrade to 2.1.2 immediately, and admins can check their logs for access to "theme.php" or "feed.php", and query strings with "ix=" or "iz=" in them."
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GrumpySimon GrumpySimon writes  |  more than 7 years ago

GrumpySimon writes "I'm not sure what to make of this: Microsoft will donate a portion of advertising revenue every time you start a conversation in Windows Live(TM) Messenger with "i'm". Why?

So any time you have an i'm(TM) conversation using Windows Live Messenger, you help address the issues you feel most passionate about, including poverty, child protection, disease, and environmental degradation. It's simple. All you have to do is join and start an instant messaging conversation. We'll handle the donation.
I'm not sure if this just applies to "i'm", or "I'm", or even "I'M"."
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GrumpySimon GrumpySimon writes  |  more than 7 years ago

GrumpySimon writes "Whilst many of us thought we were the person of the year, BBC disagrees. They've decided that Richard Dawkins is. Dawkins was chosen for a number of reasons, including "being everywhere this year", and "proving that scientists can still change the way people think", for getting the most negative review ever published, for attacking religion, for being married to an ex-Dr. Who star, and "for being rude and getting away with it"."
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GrumpySimon GrumpySimon writes  |  more than 7 years ago

GrumpySimon writes "Wikipedia has blocked the entire country of Qatar from editing pages. Whilst the ban is due to spam-abuse coming from the IP address in question, the fact that this belongs to the country's sole high-speed internet provider has the unintended consequence of stopping Qatarese from editing the wiki. The ban has raised concerns about impartiality — the majority of Al Jazeera journalists operate out of Qatar, for example. This raises a number of issues about internet connectivity in small countries — what other internet bottlenecks like this exist?"
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GrumpySimon GrumpySimon writes  |  more than 7 years ago

GrumpySimon writes "This Christmas I...
1) ate too much turkey
2) drank too much eggnog
3) heard too many carols
4) spent too much time with the family
5) watched It's a Wonderful Life repeatedly
6) asked Santa for Cowboy Neal
7) all of the above"
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GrumpySimon GrumpySimon writes  |  more than 7 years ago

GrumpySimon writes "The journal Science has published a list of the top breakthroughs in science for 2006. First on the list is the proof of Poincaré Conjecture (Wiki explanation). The rest of the list includes the rise of "Palaeo-genomics" allowing the large-scale comparison of human and Neanderthal genes, proof that the great ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica are melting, and the discovery of a amphibian-like fish fossil Tiktaalik roseae ."
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GrumpySimon GrumpySimon writes  |  more than 7 years ago

GrumpySimon writes "Techcrunch is reporting that MySpace had more page views than Yahoo in November, making it the biggest site on the net. However, Yahoo still has almost twice as many visitors as MySpace, which is possibly attributable to MySpace's Click-Factory design. The results come from noted spyware purveyors Comscore , so may be a trifle inaccurate, suggesting that MySpacers are more prone to infection than Yahooligans."
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GrumpySimon GrumpySimon writes  |  more than 7 years ago

GrumpySimon writes "McAfee is predicting more malware in 2007. The anti-virus company is (surprise!) saying that there's going to be more spamming, more phishing, more trojans, more bots, and more viruses. They suggest that viruses which target smartphones (e.g. CommWarrior ) will become more prevalent, and the combination of this with wireless/bluetooth technology is a recipe for shenanigans. Additionally, digital video is becoming the next big vector (e.g. myspace v.s. quicktime), and you can expect to see SMiShing — AKA phishing via SMS — on a phone near you soon."
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GrumpySimon GrumpySimon writes  |  more than 7 years ago

GrumpySimon writes "Science Daily is reporting that evidence has been found for the world's oldest ritual. Archaeologist Sheila Coulson has uncovered a stone artifact shaped to look like a python in the Tsodilo hills region of Botswana (well known for glorious rock paintings). The python was surrounded by more than 13,000 other artifacts, many of which were spearheads. It appears that these spearheads, were brought to the location and ceremonially burnt. This find pushes the dates of early ritualistic and religious behavior back 30,000 than previously thought."
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GrumpySimon GrumpySimon writes  |  more than 7 years ago

GrumpySimon writes "In the midst of fanboy speculation on whedonesque.com (http://whedonesque.com/) about a sequel to last years fantastic Serenity movie (http://www.serenitymovie.com/), Joss Whedon pops up and emphatically states that:

"There's no sequel, no secret project regarding Serenity or somesuch and I'm not even sure how anyone thought there was talk there." — http://whedonesque.com/comments/11487#143843

We can only hope this means "no sequel in progress" and not "no sequel, ever"."

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