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Behind the MOOC Harassment Charges That Stunned MIT

MisterSquid Re:Popcorn time! (357 comments)

Look at the actual crime reporting figures, locally rape convictions stand at around 8 per 100,000. Now let's get crazy and say only one in twenty rapes and or sexual assault charges result in a conviction. Let's get even crazier and say one in twenty people who are raped even report the matter. That leaves us with 3200 per 100,000, or about one in thirty. Still almost an order of magnitude smaller than feminist figures and almost certainly still a gigantic exaggeration.

You're missing the dimension of time which crime statistics do include (you didn't include a link, btw). If your hypothesized/extrapolated numbers for rape is multiplied for the same population over a period of, say, 10 years and presuming each year produces new victims, that would mean than a relatively stable population base of 100,000 would yield 32,000 rapes.

It's not like rape (or any crime) only happens in a given population for only one year. People have lifespans and the number of victims accumulate over time, increasing the percentage of people who fall victim.

Your mistake was so easy to catch that if I didn't know better I'd say someone such a miss by someone who's looking so carefully at the data probably has an axe to grind.

Then again, maybe I don't know better and I'll say it anyway.

yesterday
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Regular Exercise Not Enough To Make Up For Sitting All Day

MisterSquid Re: higher risk of death (348 comments)

I just want to know how sitting on my ass all day increases my chance of being eaten by a shark by 15 to 20 percent.

You don't stand a chance against a Land Shark if you're sitting down.

Plumber

I didn't ask for a plumber. Who is it?

Telegram

5 days ago
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Republican Bill Aims To Thwart the FCC's Leaning Towards Title II

MisterSquid Re:I doubt the Republicans wrote it... (182 comments)

Actually, it is unconstitutional to have laws enacted in ways other than the constitution proscribes.[...].

Can the US government with absolutely no legislative act making a change but by board or panel constituted under it- constitutionally declare pot illegal.[...]

Everything you say after the last sentence I quoted is a straw man.

Reclassifying ISPs under Title II is not a legislative act. On the contrary, it depends on the legislative Act known as Title II.

Here is a common-language explanation of the legality of using Title II to classify communications company as "common carriers".

You seem to think that classifying communications companies requires a legislative act when it does not. It simply requires a vote by the FCC and a reclassification of ISPs as common carriers under Title II would have consequences but the enactment of new legislation is not one of them.

about a week ago
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Republican Bill Aims To Thwart the FCC's Leaning Towards Title II

MisterSquid Re:I doubt the Republicans wrote it... (182 comments)

The problem with the FCC taking control of something it has previously refused to control is a steep problem for republicans to overcome on a constitutional basis.

Why is the FCC regulating an industry that OBVIOUSLY WOULD BENEFIT FROM REGULATION a "problem to overcome"?

Oh, that's right. it's because the line of argumentation which backs populist conservative/Republican talking points cannot understand that Constitutionality does not prohibit the regulation of public utilities, especially when such regulation is in alignment with even the most hardcore conservative defenders of free market capitalism.

about a week ago
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Republican Bill Aims To Thwart the FCC's Leaning Towards Title II

MisterSquid Great Part of Republican-backed Industry Bill (182 comments)

"which Internet service providers (ISPs) and Republicans say would unnecessarily burden the industry with regulation." - Except it IS NECESSARY, DUMMIES.

Given where US broadband is even in major metropolitan areas like San Francisco, New York, and Chicago, regulation as Title II is EXACTLY what US ISPs need to get their acts together. I mean 12 mbs down and 5 mbs up for $50/month in 2015. Give me a fucking break.

The great part of this Republican-backed shill bill? Obama is going to VETO it.

Suck THAT you plutocratic, money-grubbing, technologically-illiterate enemies of the United States. (Yes, I'm talking about the so-called "honorable" representatives who are backing this bill, whatever their political stripes may be. [Though we all know exactly what those stripes are, right?])

about a week ago
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Google Search Will Be Your Next Brain

MisterSquid Re:What do you mean? (45 comments)

Google doesn't need anymore money, thank you very much. It's fine that they 'waste' it on research. Much like ol Elon.

Nonetheless, I think they need to think about doing something with less potential for serious problems. I found the phrase

We never told it during training, ‘This is a cat,’” Dean told the New York Times. “It basically invented the concept of a cat.”

To be the scariest thing I've read all day. It did that by parsing YouTube. That was the first attempt to parse YouTube with 'Deep Learning".

I do not want to be around when it finally figures out about 4Chan.

My OMG moment came when I read

Nobody is saying that this system has exceeded the human ability to classify photos; indeed, if a human hired to write captions performed at the level of this neural net, the newbie wouldn’t last until lunchtime. But it did shockingly, shockingly well for a machine. Some of the dead-on hits included “a group of young people playing a game of frisbee,” “a person riding a motorcycle on a dirt road,” and “a herd of elephants walking across a dry grass field.”

because looking at those images made me realize the machine basically trained itself to do couple two domains of knowledge that even experts in language acquisition and image recognition only partially understand.

That's just flat out amazing.

The other part that got me going "Wow" reads

The neural-net system was left to its own deep learning devices to learn game rules—the system simply tried its hand at millions of sessions of Pong, Space Invaders, Beam Rider and other classics, and taught itself to do equal or surpass an accomplished adolescent. (Take notice, Twitch!) Even more intriguing, some of its more successful strategies were ones that no humans had ever envisioned.

As an old-timer (older than Dean which makes me feel like I missed the boat by spending so much time earning a doctorate in the humanities), I wanted to know precisely what successful alternative strategies DeepMind had devised in which games.

I mean, besides being completely fucking cool, that shit is like gothic scary.

The end of the article where Hassabis notes that humans should never spend any time wondering what book they should read next made me think of Richard Powers’ Galatea 2.2 which is an incredible read about the attempt to build an AI capable of passing a Master's exam in English Literature. Not as nerdy as the /. might like but it raises many of the important questions that we face as machines increasingly become able to make autonomous decisions based on (as the article calls it) "unstructured data".

I'm really glad to hear DeepMind has formed an external board to monitor the progress of its development and while the composition of that board is secret, I do think the product of its deliberations should be made public. In any case, it won't be too long before the US government (or the government of whatever country DeepMind cares to be in) will consider it an issue of national security and categorize AI and neural net technology as a munition or whatever it takes to get greater insight into what DeepMind and companies like it are actually building.

about a week ago
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Sloppy File Permissions Make Red Star OS Vulnerable

MisterSquid Re:Good ol' 777 (105 comments)

Unix doesn't help much. I mean if apache can't read /home/me/www/path/to/index.html the OS isn't going to tell you its because of the permissions on /home. Meanwhile you have given up and gone chmod -R 777 /

Actually, both the browser and the Apache log will tell you it's a permissions issue. Go to the root of /home and either add the Apache user to the group that has access to "/home/me/www/path/to/index.html" or change the group access to Apache's user.

Once the group is correct, change the permissions to g+r if necessary.

Taking the 15 seconds to properly set permissions when you know the issue is a permissions issue (otherwise why would chmod 777 fix the issue) really is just too easy not to do.

Also, use your signal lights!

about two weeks ago
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Sloppy File Permissions Make Red Star OS Vulnerable

MisterSquid Good ol' 777 (105 comments)

Whenever I see devs take the stupid shortcut of "chmod 777" I wonder what is the brain drain for these "professionals" that they can't figure out how to enable make use of "chown root:admin" and then "chmod g+x", or whatever's the appropriate level of permissions for the task at hand.

How can developers be so lazy and so security naive? It's like using signal lights when driving. Just do it because it makes for good habits.

about two weeks ago
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FCC Favors Net Neutrality

MisterSquid Seriously? GOOD NEWS? (255 comments)

Today is not 1 April!

Hard to believe what I'm reading here. I was starting to grow cynical.

Anyhow, just wanted to post to say this appears to be a good thing. Very, very exciting.

about two weeks ago
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Writers Say They Feel Censored By Surveillance

MisterSquid Re:The latest trend... (130 comments)

P. S. I meant to mod GP "Insightful", which it most certainly is.

Please mod GP up.

about three weeks ago
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Writers Say They Feel Censored By Surveillance

MisterSquid Re:The latest trend... (130 comments)

Replying to undo "Redundant" mod.

Parent heads off the practically inevitable trivializations of how universal surveillance produces a chilling effect, squelching dissent and suppressing critiques that would uncover, for example, corporate malfeasance and government corruption.

Additionally, the surveillance regime of early the early 21st-century United States is one of the greatest ideological errors and phenomenological atrocities of human history. I'm not sure there exist (nor can exist) a human institution more worrisome or troubling without its being coupled to an enforcement regime which—as we all too plainly know—the system of US surveillance is.

about three weeks ago
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Uber Must Submit CEO Emails

MisterSquid Re:Uber's in a completely different market (183 comments)

Uber is an ethically-challenged company. They are repeatedly in the news for their unscrupulous behavior (e.g. DDoSing their competitors by requesting and canceling rides) and dragged into court by multiple jurisdictions for their negligence in matters of insurance, background checks for their drivers, and predatory business practices.

Uber's CEO's tone deaf call to harass journalists was the last straw for me and I stopped using Uber and began using their competitor Lyft.

If Lyft is as good in your city as it is in mine, you may be pleasantly surprised should you also choose to switch.

I'm personally sick of hearing about Uber acting like assholes in the news and, for my money, they can't go under quickly enough.

about three weeks ago
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Gmail Reportedly Has Been Blocked In China

MisterSquid Re:So what exactly is it blocking? (145 comments)

Since SMTP allows forwarding by other servers this would require deep packet inspection.

If you mean the SMTP protocol supports chained delivery routes, then I do not think this is true (at least not used in practice). However, business customers of Gmail (at least) can request that a different SMTP server than Google's be used for outgoing mail, and (of course) anyone using an external mail client can send using any SMTP server they like.

I run a personal mail server and know I know just enough to know that I have vast chasms of ignorance about mail and network rules/firewalls.

Wouldn't it be easier to filter outbound packets destined for Gmail's SMTP servers and prevent Chinese email users from sending email to Gmail users? (This is an honest question.)

about a month ago
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Study: Police Body-Cams Reduce Unacceptable Use of Force

MisterSquid Re:Many people have thunk it. (368 comments)

I will admit that I am pretty quick to shout heads up and escalate the verbal stakes (e.g. cursing) when motorists honk if I (for example) legally and quickly take the full lane, but I only do so in the interest of encouraging safer driving and cycling. I have zero interest in provoking a fight.

"Quickly?" In other words, you're riding along the right hand side of your lane, and as a car approaches intending to pass you, you quickly move into the middle or left of the lane to force them to quickly slow down to prevent passing. Doing anything "quickly" that obstructs others is a dick move and you know it. You're an asshole who makes the rest of us cyclists look bad. Only in very rare situations would that "quickly" move promote safety. It's unsafe to anger another driver, both to you and the next cyclist they come upon. You're not doing it to promote safety, you're doing it to express dominance, like a gorilla beating its chest.

Next time you try that, think about this - are you doing it to promote safety, or are you doing it to try to express dominance by proving that you can legally be a dick? Believe me, the other driver doesn't care how big your penis is, so be the better person and don't be a dick or a dumbass to cars when you're on your bike, you're making the rest of us look bad, and it hurts us when we actually want to promote safety or policy changes (who wants their tax dollars to pay for bike lanes for a bunch of assholes like you?)

What's with your attitude? As far as anyone can tell, you're the asshole for all your presumption.

In any case, I do signal before moving from the edge of a lane to the middle, and I do assess if it's OK to do so.

Also, where I live (California), drivers may only pass when there is three or more feet between a cyclist and a driver.

Why don't you take your sanctimoniousness someplace where it's warranted?

about 1 month ago
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Study: Police Body-Cams Reduce Unacceptable Use of Force

MisterSquid Re:Many people have thunk it. (368 comments)

"legally and quickly take the full lane" as long as you are not impeding the flow of traffic, i have no problems.

Where I live, as in many municipalities, motorists must yield to cyclists who may be avoiding hazards that motorists cannot see such as roadside debris, potholes, opening doors, etc.

Additionally, in major metropolitan areas, it's safer to yield to bicyclists who will pass through traffic once they've done taking the full lane as they need.

With regard to cycling safety: when I drive, I think like a bicyclist and when I bike, I think like a motorist.

about 1 month ago
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Study: Police Body-Cams Reduce Unacceptable Use of Force

MisterSquid Re:Many people have thunk it. (368 comments)

Not to mention that when one cycles, a mirror doesn't provide the same kind of "rear view" as a rear view mirror does while driving.

about a month ago
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Study: Police Body-Cams Reduce Unacceptable Use of Force

MisterSquid Re:Many people have thunk it. (368 comments)

Not all motorists are calmed when they see my camera, but it seems many are (for example, they'll ease off tailgating me and shadowing my blind spots).

You are on a bicycle. You have no blind spots.

That's ridiculous.

Just as when driving your blind spots are at 7 o'clock and 5 o'clock. And just as when driving, one compensates by turning one's head or using a mirror.

about a month ago
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Study: Police Body-Cams Reduce Unacceptable Use of Force

MisterSquid Many people have thunk it. (368 comments)

I cycle in a major metro area and started wearing a highly visible helmet camera for liability reasons.

I also noticed (anecdata!) that the camera tended to have a calming effect on motorists near me as I would (for example) turn to look over my shoulder and the camera profile was visible.

Not all motorists are calmed when they see my camera, but it seems many are (for example, they'll ease off tailgating me and shadowing my blind spots).

I will admit that I am pretty quick to shout heads up and escalate the verbal stakes (e.g. cursing) when motorists honk if I (for example) legally and quickly take the full lane, but I only do so in the interest of encouraging safer driving and cycling. I have zero interest in provoking a fight.

YMMV

about a month ago
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Dish Pulls Fox News, Fox Business Network As Talks Break Down

MisterSquid Re: wrong totally (275 comments)

Admittedly with no data to hand, the demographic who watches FOX as a source of news likely anti-intellectual, science-denying, god-fearing, economically disenfranchised, and socially regressive.

It looks like you missed at least three words in this sentence. But that's the problem with calling people dumb over the Internet, isn't it?

I missed one word, an "is" between "news" and "likely".

I called no one dumb, though I did insinuate it by calling people a subset of people who don't get their news from cable TV "smart ones". I stand by that assertion, that people who get their news through the Internet are more literate, skeptical, and open to evidence-based claims than those who get their news through cable TV.

I have no data for my claim, which I admit is a stereotype.

Finally, I don't hate the audience I characterized, though my political differences with that audience may be great.

about a month ago
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Dish Pulls Fox News, Fox Business Network As Talks Break Down

MisterSquid Re: wrong totally (275 comments)

I've never heard of a cable package with CNN not on basic cable. You usually get CNN, Fox, and MSNBC. Dish network, the company who we're allegedly talking about, has all 3 on their basic service.

Also, the bonus for doctor's offices and car dealerships doesn't account for the success of Fox's prime time shows. Fox News routinely blows out its competitors in prime time, a time at which most of those businesses are closed and viewers are watching at home.

The people still glued to their TV sets and cable television in the US in 2014 are very likely politically and educationally uniform.

Admittedly with no data to hand, the demographic who watches FOX as a source of news likely anti-intellectual, science-denying, god-fearing, economically disenfranchised, and socially regressive.

But even if I'm mistaken in my gross stereotype of the audience for FOX News, judging the "merits" of a TV network according to the size of the TV audience misses the forest for the trees which is that in 2014 the smart ones aren't really watching any cable TV at all.

One guess where those smart people are getting their news. (Hint: the Internet has many, many sources of information where even single individuals can reach millions of people pretty much in real time.)

about a month ago

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