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Genetically Engineering Babies a Moral Obligation, Says Ethicist

MerlinTheWizard Re:If you dont, someone else will (840 comments)

That's sweet. Actually a very nice example of unethical reasoning.

about 2 years ago
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Genetically Engineering Babies a Moral Obligation, Says Ethicist

MerlinTheWizard Re:Combination of cluelessness with logical fallac (840 comments)

You make 3 very good points. To quote Wikipedia: "Savulescu argues that humanity is on the brink of disappearing in a metaphorical ‘Bermuda Triangle’ – unless certain eugenic steps are taken to correct what he considers to be aberrant human behaviour and overly liberal laws."

Maybe his romanian origins (Romania under the soviet union influence for a long time) could explain some of this. As for me, the sentence above shows that they guy is more of a dangerous politician than a scientist. End of story.

about 2 years ago
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Genetically Engineering Babies a Moral Obligation, Says Ethicist

MerlinTheWizard Engineering is actually a well-chosen term (840 comments)

What they are talking about here is exactly that: something akin to engineering - basically using science facts and "recipes" to create or modify things without really understanding what one is doing on a deeper level, as long as it seems to be working (and until it breaks).
Modern views on evolution and on genetics tend to admit that DNA is actually a very vague description, where genes code very general characteristics and not the precise details we used to think they did, leaving a large part for randomness and subjectness to interactions with the environment.
What that basically means is that by trying to "fix" DNA, we are actually reducing the overall possibilies: maybe some bad characteristic won't show up, but probably many more other possibilites won't either, the result of which we have absolutely no idea about.
I'm baffled that some current "professor" does seem to think as though we were 50 or 60 years ago. Grow up!

about 2 years ago
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Wozniak Predicts Horrible Problems With the Cloud

MerlinTheWizard I basically agree (331 comments)

The term itself ("the cloud") is so retarded that it can't be anything else than a good way of getting more money from the masses.

Basically you will pay to give away your privacy and ultimately, your freedom. It's a dictator's wildest dream coming true. Incidentally, a society model where you give up ownership of your data sounds like communism to me. Or maybe even worse than communism. I don't buy the "but people never backup their own data anyway, so the cloud is good for them." point. In fact, I don't want to live in a society where people can't even take care of their own data. Idiocracy?

about 2 years ago
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The Science of Santa

MerlinTheWizard Alcohol... (223 comments)

Somebody should really quit drinking.

more than 2 years ago
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Student Suspended For Posting On YouTube

MerlinTheWizard Re:Police? (375 comments)

Oh, indeed! This student used the tube and got stinged!

more than 3 years ago
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Bing Adds 'Like' Button

MerlinTheWizard Thinking about it... (119 comments)

... isn't the internet, and especially social networks and search engines, becoming something worse than communism, where eveveryone's life, not just their properties, belongs to everybody?

People, in their Internet-aholism, seem to care less and less about their privacy. Are we regressing on some level?

But what's even more amazing is that this seemingly endless source of revenue makes people think it actually enhances their lives, whereas the added value to their lives is doubtful, at best.

The Economist talks about the new tech bubble: http://www.economist.com/node/18681576, and this time, it seems like it's here to stay. All these new "technologies" look like they have something in common: depriving people of their freedom (the so-called "cloud", social networks, increasingly intrusive search engines...)

Will I eventually be proved wrong? I hope so.

more than 3 years ago
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Chromeless Supplants Mozilla's Prism Project

MerlinTheWizard Re:Single point of failure development (111 comments)

So why does it seem as if everybody wants to make us dependent on a 24/7 connection to the web, and why does it seem everyone wants to turn the browser into the building block upon which everything else depends?

Because it's a potentially endless source of revenue. It's really that simple.

more than 3 years ago
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How Europe Will Lower Emissions — Self Driving Cars

MerlinTheWizard Automation (317 comments)

The human species seems to be oddly obsessed with automating everything it can think of - and of course, it's always supposed to be in a good cause. Since there was much talk about commuting, why don't we go a step further and finish what we already started long ago: automate every possible kind of work humans can do. Then we won't need to commute anymore and the work environment should be much more efficient too. Thus, lower emissions. Then we can just sit around and maybe push one button or two every once in a while. But then, we might get very fat in the long run, if we just do nothing. And our own production of CO2 and other nasty gases ( ;) ) might eventually be a huge problem. Then again, maybe at this point, we won't need to exist at all anymore. Looks like a bright future, if you ask me.

more than 3 years ago
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US Students Struggle With Understanding of the 'Equal' Sign

MerlinTheWizard Re:I guess I'm stupid, too. (1268 comments)

Am I the only one who absolutely DID NOT understand your answer? How do you go from: 4+3+2 = 9 to: ( ) + 2 = 2 ? It makes no sense.

about 4 years ago
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German User Fined For Having an Open Wi-Fi

MerlinTheWizard And then... (563 comments)

... of course, the user that got fined for not securing his network access could sue the Wi-Fi router manufacturer / his ISP / the Wi-Fi alliance / the ISO (while he's at it) for not making it obvious enough that not securing his wireless network access is, in the end, actually a law infringement. Jesus!! This is a masquerade of justice.

more than 4 years ago
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Do IT Pros Abuse Their Power?

MerlinTheWizard Re:Power Corrupts... (460 comments)

Yep, it's the most frequent kind of abuse. IT people making changes without prior warning nor any concern about how people work and use IT in their daily routine. They usually never even ask.

more than 4 years ago
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Phantom OS, the 21st Century OS?

MerlinTheWizard A bit frightening... (553 comments)

In soviet OS, everything is a persistant object.

Kidding aside, I see several major issues with this concept: the increased risk of losing valuable data, the slowness, the very low interoperability (how do you exchange data with other OS's?), the whole span of programming languages that are not supported (I don't want to be coerced into using Java or C#, what's that about?)

Another issue is that I think the "object oriented" paradigms that are in use today are flawed in some aspects, and instead of basing everything computing-related on that, maybe we need to work on the concepts first.

more than 5 years ago
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512GB Solid State Disks on the Way

MerlinTheWizard Re:Cost? (186 comments)

I'm not sure that storing this much data in just one device would be that clever to begin with.

more than 6 years ago

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