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The GPLv2 Goes To Court

Pseudonym Re:Why not ask the authors of the GPL Ver.2? (173 comments)

It would lock up much software as then each person who contributed is basically a copyright holder and can sue under that.

That's true of the Linux kernel. It's not true of most GPL'd code, which is almost all available under GPL version X (for some X) "or (at your option) any later version".

2 days ago
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Apparent Islamic Terrorism Strikes Sydney

Pseudonym Re:Muslims? (873 comments)

But one Breivik is newsworthy only because it's such a rare occurrence.

THANKYOU!

I'm glad someone said it. Breivik was a rare occurrence. 9/11 was a rare occurrence. Fort Hood was a rare occurrence. The random nutter with a gun in Sydney is a rare occurrence. All crimes of this nature are rare occurrences. That is why they are remarkable, and that is why we take note of them.

When drones take out a whole street in Pakistan, nobody pays attention, because this is not a rare occurrence.

2 days ago
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Australian Target Stores Ban GTA V For Depictions of Violence Against Women

Pseudonym Re:Meanwhile (310 comments)

Actually, there is no "eternal torture in the fires of hell" for humans in the Bible. A lot of people don't know this.

about two weeks ago
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Australian Target Stores Ban GTA V For Depictions of Violence Against Women

Pseudonym Re:Removed after Initial sales spike (310 comments)

Exactly this.

There is a good argument for a store like Target not to stock a game like GTA 5 or, indeed, any media rated R. I'll bet you money that Target doesn't carry any Catherine Briellat movies, and their Lars von Trier section is pretty small too. Something else that pretty much everyone on this thread missed was that this was partly in response to an advertising flyer which had GTA5 right next to a Peppa Pig DVD.

That Target decided not to sell GTA5 hurts almost exactly nobody. Game stores will still stock it. It will still be on all the download stores. JB Hi-Fi and EB Games will still sell it, and make it available via game stores. Hell, DVD stores (of which there still are plenty in Australia) will still stock it. Most people in the target audience for GTA 5 will continue playing the copy they got at some point in the last year.

The number of people who were hurt in any way by this decision was almost exactly zero. This is a big whoop over nothing.

But here's what makes me sad about the whole thing:

Target is within its rights not to sell GTA5, but it's hard not to see it as cynical and hypocritical.

Take Two is within its rights to make and sell GTA5, but it's hard not to see it as a symptom of a wider problem with the portrayal of women in media, and video games in particular.

The people who made and signed the petition are within their rights to do so, and certainly had noble motives for doing so, but it's hard not to see it as a symptom of the wider moral panic over video games as being somehow "different" from other artforms.

The gamers who lashed back at the petition (even the non-gators) are within their rights to do so, and even had good reason to do so, but it's hard not to see this as yet more pseudo-victim mentality.

In summary, there is no such thing as "the good guys".

about two weeks ago
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James Watson's Nobel Prize Goes On Auction This Week

Pseudonym Re: Of Course It Was (355 comments)

I did read your post. I was answering your question about what I was telling you.

On the rest of your post, I don't think that it's likely that we will "measure intelligence" to the level of precision required to find a significant difference that correlates with "race" at any point in the forseeable future. Leaving aside that we don't have a precise enough definition of "intelligence", the only way we currently know to increase precision is more samples. There aren't enough people in the world to get the confidence level down to one decimal place. The Sun would go nova before we got "trillions".

about two weeks ago
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James Watson's Nobel Prize Goes On Auction This Week

Pseudonym Re:Of Course It Was (355 comments)

On the contrary, it's quite inconvenient. It means that intelligence differences between "races" are our responsibility, rather than something out of our control.

about two weeks ago
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James Watson's Nobel Prize Goes On Auction This Week

Pseudonym Re:Of Course It Was (355 comments)

It was a systematic review, so it covered all of the known evidence on all hypothesised factors which could cause difference in intelligence. "Race" (which is a junk concept anyway) was largely ruled out because there is little evidence for it.

about two weeks ago
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James Watson's Nobel Prize Goes On Auction This Week

Pseudonym Re:Of Course It Was (355 comments)

I am saying that anyone who sets out to "prove intelligence differences among the races" is assuming the conclusion before the study is done, and that's junk science. I was not saying any more or less than that.

But since you asked: Intelligence does seem to run in families. There is probably a combination of genetics and environment happening here. The idea that this could scale up to "races" (whatever "race" means) is not unthinkable, but based on what we know now, it seems highly unlikely.

about two weeks ago
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James Watson's Nobel Prize Goes On Auction This Week

Pseudonym Re: Of Course It Was (355 comments)

I will only note that I anticipated this objection, and this is the reason why I gave the evidence on which I made that judgement. I think the little that I had to go on was enough.

For what it's worth, I am also unqualified.

about two weeks ago
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James Watson's Nobel Prize Goes On Auction This Week

Pseudonym Re:Of Course It Was (355 comments)

I interpreted what you said in the only way which makes sense. Because if you were saying that nobody would get away with studying the reasons why different groups have different measured IQs these days, that claim is demonstrably false.

about two weeks ago
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Google, National Parks Partner To Let Girls Program White House Xmas Tree Lights

Pseudonym Re:But, as the feminists say.. (333 comments)

No, it's neither the purpose nor the end result. But it is the practical effect. To implement an affirmative action programme, that's pretty much what you have to do.

about two weeks ago
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James Watson's Nobel Prize Goes On Auction This Week

Pseudonym Re:Of Course It Was (355 comments)

Imagine the hammer that would come down on anyone proposing a study to prove intelligence differences among the races.

A large hammer should come down on anyone proposing a study whose stated goal is to prove an assumed conclusion. Such a person doesn't understand the point of science.

about two weeks ago
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James Watson's Nobel Prize Goes On Auction This Week

Pseudonym Re: Of Course It Was (355 comments)

You could not genuinely investigate the correlation between IQ and ethnic/racial groups because you are unqualified to do so. I know this because you are unaware that qualified people have been looking at the issue for decades, and in that sense, the subject isn't the slightest bit taboo.

Since you asked, pretty much every systematic review of the evidence finds that any differences can be explained by sociocultural factors, environmental factors, stereotype threat, and so on.

Incidentally, one of the reasons why we know this is that IQ has been increasing for pretty much everyone around the world since the 1930s (though there is some evidence that the effect may be slowing now), but it has been increasing at different rates for different groups. Importantly, the IQ of groups like African-Americans has been increasing at a faster rate than for white Americans. There is no possible genetic explanation for this.

about two weeks ago
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James Watson's Nobel Prize Goes On Auction This Week

Pseudonym Re: Of Course It Was (355 comments)

Or, to put it another way, extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.

about two weeks ago
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Google, National Parks Partner To Let Girls Program White House Xmas Tree Lights

Pseudonym Re:But, as the feminists say.. (333 comments)

In the United States, affirmative action is legally defined in a bunch of executive orders, in particular 11246 (which established the regime for US government contractors) and 11478 (which extended it to the civilian workforce).

And yes, it really is almost all about data collection. The idea is pretty simple: If you are not discriminating, then you should be able to show it. If you haven't looked, then you don't actually know if you are the cause of systematic discrimination or not.

“Let me be clear about what affirmative action must not mean and what I won’t allow it to be. It does not mean – and I don’t favor – the unjustified preference of the unqualified over the qualified of any race or gender. It doesn’t mean – and I don’t favor – numerical quotas. It doesn’t mean – and I don’t favor – rejection or selection of any employee or student solely on the basis of race or gender without regard to merit.”
-- Bill Clinton, July 19, 1995

about two weeks ago
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Google, National Parks Partner To Let Girls Program White House Xmas Tree Lights

Pseudonym Re:But, as the feminists say.. (333 comments)

Affirmative action is almost entirely about data collection. What's discriminatory about data collection?

about two weeks ago
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Google, National Parks Partner To Let Girls Program White House Xmas Tree Lights

Pseudonym Re:Girls, girls, girls... (333 comments)

There is an imbalance in the world of elite jazz instrumentalists. There are far, far more men than women who are at the top of that profession.

It is not due to lack of interest in jazz. We know this because elite jazz singers are split pretty much 50/50 men and women.

It is not due to lack of skill. We know this because elite classical instrumentalists on those very same instruments are split pretty much 50/50 men and women.

Your task is to explain how this is due to biology and not culture.

about two weeks ago
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Google, National Parks Partner To Let Girls Program White House Xmas Tree Lights

Pseudonym Re:But, as the feminists say.. (333 comments)

The best way to fight discrimination is to set the example by not discriminating.

The best way to fight discrimination is to find out exactly where the discrimination is happening, and then fix that. This is known as "affirmative action".

about two weeks ago

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