top Schizophrenia Is Not a Single Disease
Bipolar Disorder, Psychosis and Schizophrenia for Dummies who know a little physics etc.
Life is generally in a good position when it has potential (like gravitational potential in the case of high ground) and the capacity to use it in a controlled fashion. That means balancing in a position that would otherwise be considered an unstable equilibrium in the sense of dynamical systems theory. Our bodies are at their most efficient when well balanced (just watch a good dancer to see this in action) and our brains are at their best when similarly balanced. If something disturbs the equilibrium, this disturbance and the required correction can be used to understand the disturbance. This is how stimulation affects us.
Now consider a simple example of a balancing physical object, but with no control mechanism: a spinning top. This has three states--spinning upright (when the gravitational potential is near its maximum), wobbling (when the gravitational potential is slightly lower, in which case it behaves erratically and gives up its energy randomly until...) finally we have the fallen over state. This is what medical people term depression. The simple solution is to get upright and balanced again, but this is hard in our modern overly complex society, and the result of trying to get up is often a lot of wobbling, which gets diagnosed as things like mania, psychosis and schizophrenia depending on how exactly this wobbling manifests itself. The key is to get balanced before you get pushed over, and that is hard when the medical mental health people seem to have the idea that you fix a wobbling spinning top by knocking it over and gluing it to the floor.
Trying to understand mental health in a 'sum of the parts' way is just dumb, but it is the obsession of the medical fraternity, and is to the extent that it is politically very difficult to suggest otherwise. How our genetic code creates us is an approach that misses the point that without the environmental context in which that genetic code develops, it won't develop, so you need to understand the environment as well (and that means understanding the entire world in complete detail, which is rather a long way the other side of impossible).
Viewed as an equilbrium seeking system, 'mental illnesses' like mania and schizophrenia are just seen as things like oscillations and resonant modes that are being excited by either an appropriate drive, or are resonating within the equilibrium seeking system. The biological stuff is just an implementation detail in much the way that transistors on a chip are implementation details of your python program that you are running that you can safely ignore in most cases. Medication is basically trying to solve a software problem by randomly pumping noise into the processor. A computer will crash instantly if you do this, but humans are rather more robust, and can survive for a long time in an unbalanced state. They are, however, rather unproductive in this state and won't tend to find life enjoyable. But they can survive for a long time, but can become desperate to get out of such states.
top Does Learning To Code Outweigh a Degree In Computer Science?
Imagine a world where coding is as ubiquitous as reading and writing is to us today. Bear in mind that centuries ago, reading and writing was about as ubiquitous as coding is today, and was at one point in time the preserve of the masses. Writing for machines and reading machine instructions will at some stage become part of our everyday literacy. The thing is, efficiency matters: in a competitive marketplace, for a given market niche, barring underhand business tactics, the more efficient (and effective) software will tend to do better. Eventually underhanded business tactics will become too inefficient relative to the state of the art, and will be destined to die out (as, in general, will self-serving greed, it too not being the most overall efficient use of resources). Maths is unavoidable, and computer science is an outgrowth of maths, and is the part relevant to modern digital computers. Furthermore, concepts and phenomena we see in computer science and artificial intelligence often have implications and applications well beyond digital computers once considered in mathematical generality. Long term, coding is not enough, but not being able to code when computers are as ubiquitous as they are today is as sensible as not being able to read or write, or do simple arithmetic.
top Are Altcoins Undermining Bitcoin's Credibility?
Whats all that got to do with the price of eggs?
about a month and a half ago
top Comparison: Linux Text Editors
Of course, you could use a few Bash aliases for fun.
:47,80s/hello/world when you can do
mknod -p a b c
head -n 47 myfile > a & tail -n $(($(wc -l myfile) - 80)) myfile > c & ( head -n 80 myfile | tail -n $((80 - 47)) | sed -E 's/hello/world/' ) > b & (sleep 1 ; cat a b c > myfile.version2)
on the command line.
Caveat, this has neither been run, nor tested, so may need debugging.
top Comparison: Linux Text Editors
When I first played with Linux in 1995, with no *nix experience, I recall the situation of getting trapped in ed or vi. After trying various random key combinations, I discovered that Ctrl-Z got me back to a command prompt, then jobs -l gave a list of stopped jobs with PIDs which I could pass to kill -9. That restored sanity. Years later I actually got round to learning vi(m) after hearing from a local sysadmin how useful it was, and by then there were tutorials online that eased you into it. The thing I'm most grateful for with vim is how I can get a command prompt on windows, mac, linux, or over ssh to my webhost, and the environment works the same way. But for things like android programming I tend to follow the sheeple and use eclipse/android-studio and I'm beginning to get into Code::Blocks for some things. I've thought for years of writing my own vim-like editor as an exercise, but haven't got round to it yet.
top Following EU Ruling, BBC Article Excluded From Google Searches
I can imagine Streisand effects coming into play. If google blacklists one article, in compliance, what is to stop other articles containing the information and possibly linking to the original appearing.
top Swedish Farmers Have Doubts About Climatologists and Climate Change
How many biologists understand the nature of randomness though? When it comes to metaphysical stuff, the biologists are punting the difficult bit into the term 'random' and ascribing this 'random' thingamajig the properties that fundies ascribe to their God. Then things such as mind, consciousness and intelligence have yet to be turned into sufficiently concretely defined concepts to answer questions like 'is evolution directed in an intelligent way' let alone how and if human intelligence and consciousness arise from brain activity, or emerge in other ways. We really know less than we think, and many untestable hypothetical foundations are elavated to the position of unquestionable dogma by the phenomena of 'near universal acceptance by experts'.
That climate change is happening is beyond doubt, but the case that humanly produced CO2 emissions are the primary cause, and that massively reducing our CO2 emissions will fix the issue is not beyond doubt. Funding for projects which subject these ideas to scrutiny is harder to get than funding for projects which assume the CO2 caused warming and then show results consistent with it. The diagram correlating CO2 with global temperature as inferred from ice cores, famously used by Gore in his 'inconvenient truth' has been claimed by some to put the causative relationship the wrong way round (suggesting that instead rising temperatures cause the oceans to release stored CO2, hence the increase in CO2). Some have advanced the notion that solar activity is the cause, with evidence. But global warming has become so politicised that proper scientific debate is stifled, for example by the need to adhere to CO2 caused warming theories in order to get funding for your project.
Your point of 'Never underestimate the power of a person to disagree if agreeing means that they will need to alter their worldview.' is just as valid for the wide acceptance of the CO2-warming relationship. The great political momentum attached to this worldview is hard to argue against, even on scientific grounds, since those who don't wish to change can keep pointing to the mass who believe CO2 causes global warming.
Caveat: I'm not an expert in this area, but find how politicised it is to be worrying.
top Exploiting Wildcards On Linux/Unix
There are multiple manpage sections. For example
man -s1 stat
will get you the docs for the command line tool called stat, which will have STAT(1) in the top left, whereas
man -s2 stat
will get you the docs for the C library function stat, and this will have STAT(2) in the top left.
top Exploiting Wildcards On Linux/Unix
*.* is a DOSism -- in *NIX shells it matches all files who have a . in their name, such as 'file.png', but will not match a file called 'hello' which does not have a dot. sudo rm -rf
/*.* won't do a lot, whereas sudo rm -rf /* will.
top Wayland 1.5 Released
The most common use case today is local applications. This must be optimised for. Have a separate server and protocol to network transparency for the classes of applications that network transparency is useful for (simple GUIs, text editors and suchlike, rather than nonlinear video editors and 3D games). Likewise with audio, there is a need for a simple high performance backend for some applications, and network friendliness for others. In both cases there should be two layers, a fast light low level backend and a network transparent application layer for applications that want to use it.
top Jimmy Wales To 'Holistic Healers': Prove Your Claims the Old-Fashioned Way
The word science has an interesting etymology. One branch follows modern sciences such as physics, but classically pre the formation of the modern philosophy of science, the word also meant a reliable body of knowledge and discourse about it. Rigorous discourse should be fine, but a word other than science is needed, and a clear philosophy underlying said discourse. Much of the way our reality works is beyond what science can touch, since so much only happens once, or involves more variables than can be controlled in an experiment. I tend to explore these things through mathematical thought experiments, modelling what a human experimenter could see, and thus tend to be aware of 'aliasing issues' where too few observations allow false 'truths' to be inferred without contradiction. Proper scientists, as my last word, try their utmost to blow their results to kingdom come, and only accept what remains. Ask these 'holistic science' people two things: what are the limitations of their scientific methods, and what steps have they taken to try and disprove their claims. Unless, as we see in our physics textbooks, one can say 'this has survived every experimental test we've thrown at it', then a claim can't be said to be scientific in my book. (This means I throw much of biology and medicine outside what I consider scientific, but I am happy as a hardliner when it comes to what is scientific, and I am happy that there are other reliable bodies of knowledge that work differently.)
top Ouya Dropping 'Free-to-Play' Requirement
My recent experience with the Mac App store (if a newer version won't work on your hardware, you're SOL and can't get older versions that do work) has burned me enough not to trust a model where I don't take delivery of a physical copy with the means to activate it without the intervention of third parties. I run the windoze that comes on my laptop until I decide on a HDD upgrade, then run Debian or UbuntuStudio. I'm beginning the painful process of weaning myself off ShinyJuicyAppleses.
With this console again it just goes to show that business needs trump claims and promises to consumers. You get what you pay for, and anything else is a bonus that lasts as long as it lasts. Mr Caveat X. Emptor is very much alive and kicking.
top Flies That Do Calculus With Their Wings
that humans do signal processing with their brains, and that such processing involves complex analysis. One day they'll learn that those squiggly symbols in maths books actually mean something. It's an embarrassment to science that these insect chasers are called scientists rather than sciensecoolhuhwowists. End rant of an old school fundamentalist.
top Ask Slashdot: Can an Old Programmer Learn New Tricks?
Programming was done and dusted as a discipline in the sixties, got creative in the seventies and has been taking the piss ever since. New programmers need to stop learning tricks and learn to write good programs that work on minimal resources and work under strain and with no guessing games involved, just like the Space Shuttle people did, and learnt the beauty of purity that Lisp showed, the beauty of simplicity that Forth showed, and redevelop the lost art of programming. Modern day computing is ugly. [ Here ends the rant of an old school fundamentalist
top Solar-Powered Toilet Torches Waste For Public Health
"Solar Powered Toilet Torches deemed a Waste to the Public Health budget" is one example misreading.
top Child Porn Arrest For Cameron Aide Who Helped Plan UK Net Filters
A perfect child-porn filter that only filters child porn would be wonderful, but that is fairy magic.
In reality we cannot trust those who wish to filter our internet, and this is why. There is no substitute for proper discipline and compassion in upbringing. Being forced to learn to fight crudely at school to protect myself (and fight my own battles) has caused me crippling psychiatric issues in adulthood. Being forced to porn act to make daddy money (this did NOT happen to me) is an even worse evil. Children need to grow, learn and play, and be free from influences such as sexuality and violence, but must be taught proper discipline about both so that as they reach maturity these things are no longer a fascination and do not cause the grown up child to turn to unhealthy sex and violence as a crutch. Society needs fixing.
top Slashdot Asks: Do You Label Your Tech Gear, and If So, How?
Varnish! (Works a treat for colour coding things like laptop PSUs.)
top A Mathematical Proof Too Long To Check
I was trying to classify the normal subgroups of PSL(n,q) where n,q may be nonstandard elements of a nonstandard model of arithmetic. I pointed out that if Ariah Lev's work formalised correctly, then a few steps would yield the result I wanted, but that this was beyond checking. Once the PhD was done, I did further investigation, and scribbled a thought in a moment of insight, and left it to tidy itself up. I believe I put an entry on either chalisque.wordpress.com or deardiary.chalisque.org, but forget which, and am hunting it down. If not, John's Antibang Theory That Really Works and its notion of True Computability vs Turing equivalent non-True forms will see the light of day in a readable format, but if you want to know how my mind really thinks, this is a clue as to my mind's native language. It's quasi-English pseudo-maths that I then filter for correctness before communicating.
I can't find it, but there are a great many thoughts I had to dump out to reclaim brainspace. As a free software believer, and a free-thinking believer, I treat my programs and thoughts like a mother treats her children, caringly and lovingly and I don't send them out into the world ill-equipped to face rigorous challenge.
top Ask Slashdot: Best Options For Ongoing Education?
I've managed to fit my post into the subject, so here I'll paste my Open Letter to Wacom instead. Enjoy, and please don't moderate off-topic since the Comment Subject is the entire post and is on topic, but I've got to put something meaningful here to get through the filter.
(hint: copy and paste into a fixed width editor and reformat to taste, taking care to make my signature look like John.)
An Open Letter to Wacom,
Re: Drivers that don't drive properly, and are welded shut so as to be unfixable for whoever has the misfortune to need to use them.
When I plug my Bamboo into my Linux laptops, it works perfectly every time. It does not, however, work at all properly on my mac, and isn't moving the mouse at all on this Windows 7 64bit laptop despite it having worked in the past, no new drivers having been installed, and Windows 7 saying the driver was successfully installed.
Please investigate how the Free Software community was able to write a working driver, hit your driver developers over the head with a clue-stick or other relevant therapy, and consider having open source (BSD licensed or weaker) Windows drivers---from which open source and Free Software drivers can be developed, maintained and debugged independently---written from scratch following advice of the Free Software community (but not copying code itself) and released under a BSD-style open source without restrictions license.
Since I cannot trust Wacom products to work on my Mac, nor on my Windows laptops, and my £200 Corel Painter software doesn't have a Linux version, I cannot justify the cost of an Intuos Pro no matter how much I love the idea if digital painting, and the philosophy of what was Fractal Design's Painter.
That I cannot trust Corel Painter to try to kick it's twice-a-day crash habit, means I can't trust it either.
Krita is a nice idea, but is at least a year or so from being production ready, and Gimp is not really a digital painting product, but a General Image Manipulation Program, so that is no substitute either.
You can put part of the blame on Microsoft for the driver issue for having such a stupid USB driver model, but you are the fools for actually trying to code to said broken model.
_J_oo hh nn J oo hh nn J ----------- .
15th February, 2014 (Hangover-after-Valentines-and-too-many-glasses-of-wine-Day Day) [hic!]
top Music Industry Is Keeping Streaming Services Unprofitable
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v... from conception to completion within a day (yesterday, Valentines Day if you care about pink fluffy luvviduvvy stuff). This says all I think I can say abou the Music Industry's 'think of our struggling artists when you ponder not giving us more money than we need' attitude.
top The Law for Lawyers and Non-Law for Non-Lawyers Manifesto: A Call to Arms, Legs,
We demand the right not to be treated as lawyers, by laywers, subjugated under the will of a legal system run by lawyers. We've just had enough "legal fertilizer probably legally obtained from a possibly illegally owned cow's rear end" and "ignorance of the law is no excuse".
Well (Non-)Ignorance of the (Non-)Law (respectively subect to the existence of at least one Non) is equally No Excuse.
So hear our Non-Law and take your Law of Lawwers, by Lawyers, of Lawyers and for Lawyers back to you planet of Law and leave us in peace to explore the rest of the Universe.
Important Non-Legal point:
By adding to this document, you are declaring Your intention to lay down Your life if required to do so in the event that You are required to Die so that Your inconsistent addition may be removed for the sake of all others.
top My blog.
Ok, whoever may read this. I've set up a standard free blogging account with blogger.com. You can
go there to read thoughts that I want to jot down. Chances are, I won't write anything much in my journal entry here. This may change, but given that I've been a slashdotter since before it had user accounts, and I've never bothered to make a journal entry here before, don't expect much.