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Comments

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Linus Torvalds: "GCC 4.9.0 Seems To Be Terminally Broken"

Spazmania Re:I know you're trying to be funny, but... (670 comments)

He's being a bully, pure and simple

Sticks and stones. I'd rather face honest anger than than a disingenuous veneer of reasonableness. And this isn't the first (or second or third) time in the last couple years GCC has been found to have optimized something into wrong code.

2 days ago
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Predicting a Future Free of Dollar Bills

Spazmania Re:Children (753 comments)

Taxes pay to print cash. They could pay to run the transaction system.

Cards could carry a monthly fee that covers up to some number of transactions.

Transactions consisting solely of splitting or combining cards could be made free while transactions consisting of the purchase of goods or services continue to carry a fee.

There are any number of ways to set up the system where one activity or another carries no fee. When I write a check I pay no fee. The bank makes its money off me other ways.

about two weeks ago
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Predicting a Future Free of Dollar Bills

Spazmania Re:Children (753 comments)

Maybe. Certainly with today's approach.

about two weeks ago
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By 2045 'The Top Species Will No Longer Be Humans,' and That Could Be a Problem

Spazmania Re:Now thats incentive (564 comments)

So a guy walking around with an artificial leg, a plastic heart valve, dentures and google glass ISN'T a cyborg? What is?

about two weeks ago
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Predicting a Future Free of Dollar Bills

Spazmania Re:Children (753 comments)

Seriously?

By the parent using the parent's bank card. By the kid splitting a larger card so he can give some amount to his buddy or combining several cards he got from his buddies.

I'm against a cashless society but not because there's any practical obstruction to it working. There isn't.

about two weeks ago
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When Beliefs and Facts Collide

Spazmania Re:Not surprising. (725 comments)

Shame you don't understand logical fallacies.

"Appeal to consequences" means an argument that something must be false because the consequences would be bad. I made no such argument. I said, "we'd better be damn sure we're right" before undertaking an effort with such negative consequences.

Unproven is not the same as false, nor is disputing unfounded conclusions the same as calling the conclusions untrue. This is one of the central fallacies that the alarmists have been perpetrating: that anyone who says, "hold on, it looks like you should investigate this a little more thoroughly" is a "denier" claiming that the hypotheses are false.

Climate alarmists may yet find sufficient scientific evidence to justify drastic action. I claim only that the ringing of the alarm bells is premature and I even suggest a form of acceptable evidence which, if found, would sustain the yet unproven claims.

Unfortunately science only works when scientists are at liberty to try as hard as they can to demonstrate counter-examples to your theory. The whole "denier" politics discourages folks from asking the questions scientists must ask in order to sustain or refute the hypotheses on the table. Your politics have gotten in the way of actually proving whether you're right.

about two weeks ago
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Predicting a Future Free of Dollar Bills

Spazmania Re:Last century stuff (753 comments)

Not exactly. When someone with good credit pays off his "cash back" card at the end of the month, the bank passes on a portion of the merchant fees. That's the "cash back."

Of course, if you use your card as an unsecured loan for longer than the billing cycle then you pay interest. And if you're late paying you pay late fees. You're a fool to do that in anything but a dire emergency, and your parents, friends and colleagues have warned you about it all your life, but you're free to live your life any way you want to.

about two weeks ago
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Predicting a Future Free of Dollar Bills

Spazmania Re:Useless coins (753 comments)

What would we like about the dollar coin? Except by sight it's nearly indistinguishable from a quarter worth, well, a quarter of what a dollar is worth. And when we see it... it's ugly. I want to see George Washington on my dollars, not obscure companions of explorers however worthy they may be.

I do think it'd be reasonable to replace the penny and nickle with a better designed $1 coin and a $5 coin. Then the new system of cash transactions in tenths of a dollar instead of hundredths of a dollar would make sense and the universe wouldn't end because of it.

about two weeks ago
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Predicting a Future Free of Dollar Bills

Spazmania Re:Children (753 comments)

Pre-paid debit card.

about two weeks ago
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Normal Humans Effectively Excluded From Developing Software

Spazmania Re:Regular People (608 comments)

No approach to "programming" for normal people ever has allowed normal people to go beyond the canned capabilities. Excel macros are as far out of reach.

But why would this be surprising or unreasonable? Most people can't change the oil in their car either, or replace the stereo. And most of those who can can't make engine repairs. It'd be absurd to suggest this reflects faulty thinking on the part of car manufacturers.

about two weeks ago
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Normal Humans Effectively Excluded From Developing Software

Spazmania Re:Regular People (608 comments)

We are talking about something "regular" people can do.

about three weeks ago
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Normal Humans Effectively Excluded From Developing Software

Spazmania Regular People (608 comments)

Regular people can build web apps. It's called "Microsoft Sharepoint."

about three weeks ago
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When Beliefs and Facts Collide

Spazmania Re:Not surprising. (725 comments)

Haters gonna hate.

about three weeks ago
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15-Year-Old Developing a 3D Printer 10x Faster Than Anything On the Market

Spazmania wake me up (203 comments)

I was going to say wake me up when he has a production-grade model that's still the most reliable, most advanced, and faster than any 3D printer but the kid gets major style points for the Bustin Jeiber game.

about three weeks ago
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When Beliefs and Facts Collide

Spazmania Re:Not surprising. (725 comments)

Can I get you to concede that there are scientists unworthy of the title? And that many scientists belive that consensus with no serious contending alternative explanations is effectively settled?

Yes and yes. But I would suggest that those who fall into the latter category generally also fall into the former.

A theory has to coherently explain all of the evidence and make correct predictions about experiments not yet performed. Epicycles had no contenders for quite a while. But anyone who considered the orbits of the planets a settled matter was a fool -- each time data collection improved, epicycles' prediction was a little bit off yet again.

Put another way: I don't have to know the truth to know when someone is full of bull. I merely need recognize the characteristics of BS. It could still be the truth, but the guy BSing me is ruled out as a credible source for that knowledge.

about three weeks ago
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When Beliefs and Facts Collide

Spazmania Re:Not surprising. (725 comments)

Go right ahead. This should be entertaining. Or was that the limit of your analysis?

Before you get too worked up, allow me to point out that the phrase, "In my opinion" encourages critical thinking but pretty much precludes offering the statement which follows as a scientific result.

about three weeks ago
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When Beliefs and Facts Collide

Spazmania Re:Not surprising. (725 comments)

How else can you convince a layperson at all?

How do you make other people do what you think they should do? You don't.

You tell them what you're sure is true with a simplified explanation of why using the language of certainty. Then you tell them what you believe to be true and why, using the language of uncertainty. Then you acknowledge any competing theories that haven't been strictly disproven, again with the language of uncertainty, and briefly discuss the merits behind those points of view.

Anyone who needs to make a decision on that information will then ask their personal subject matter expert to spot check you -- do any of your certain claims appear questionable? Does any of the uncertainty in your beliefs appear to be mere wishful thinking? Did you deliberately omit the competition?

Folks won't make their decision on the facts. They'll make their decision based on whether they believe you're honest. Behaving like a used car salesman, using the language of certainty for everything you believe and ridiculing that which you don't, dissuades folks from finding you credible. The hard sell sometimes achieves a single result but it never achieves sustainable results over time.

about three weeks ago
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When Beliefs and Facts Collide

Spazmania Re:Not surprising. (725 comments)

I don't suggest doing nothing. I suggest more research and more experimentation. I suggest public policy that encourages more nuclear power and addresses the dangerous build up of temporary storage for spent nuclear fuel, trading a risk of local toxicity for the proven regional air pollution and possible global impact.

What I -don't- suggest is that we rush it. Let change evolve slowly on a low-cost vector until the science is good enough to support more radical action.

about three weeks ago
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When Beliefs and Facts Collide

Spazmania Re:Not surprising. (725 comments)

The only reason this whole thing is political (or a debate in the first place) is because there are people who stand to lose significantly from environmentally friendly measures and a move away from hydrocarbons.

And you and I are among them. The kind of massive economic shift needed to materially reduce the use of fossil fuels will seriously undermine your standard of living, as will the war with China necessary to stop them from burning coal.

Before we undertake such a massive and costly effort, we'd better be damn sure we're right. Something more than 97% of published abstracts declining to reject human activity as a major cause of global warming. Like maybe a model that can be shown to have been solidly predictive a decade or two after its publication. With numbers far enough outside the error band to lend the model credibility.

about three weeks ago
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When Beliefs and Facts Collide

Spazmania Re:Not surprising. (725 comments)

Phrenology has no scientific basis, but Eugenics certainly does. If you take all the people with traits you don't like, and murder them, you will have fewer of those traits in the next generation. That is a scientific fact.

That's basic animal husbandry. Eugenics takes it a step further - to a belief that weeding out the undesirables in a population will improve the species. But the last century of animal husbandry and now genetics suggests a different result - that from bulldogs to dairy cows the more thoroughly bred the animal, the more fragile it becomes. That a loss of genetic diversity leads to extinction.

Eugenics was presented as science -- look everybody, we can control attributes through breeding. Surely if we breed out the undesirable characteristics, our species will be better for it. But that conclusion didn't follow from the evidence. Eugenics' proponents made a long and unjustified leap to reach their conclusion from the available science. And in time they were proven wrong.

In my opinion, current "climate change science" quacks like the same duck -- a core of sound science deep underneath a pile of conclusions far more profound than the science actually supports.

about three weeks ago

Submissions

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The Twilight copyright saga

Spazmania Spazmania writes  |  about 4 years ago

Spazmania (174582) writes "When it's not breaking box office records, Summit Entertainment, the studio that made the Twilight series, is doing its best to make sure that if you want to see a vampire brooding, you do it through Summit. The company seems to be lobbing lawsuits at pretty much anyone who uses Twilight's name or images without its permission."
Link to Original Source
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Second Life affair ends in divorce

Spazmania Spazmania writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Spazmania (174582) writes "A British couple who married in a lavish Second Life wedding ceremony are to divorce after one of them had an alleged "affair" in the online world. Amy Taylor, 28, said she had caught husband David Pollard, 40, having sex with an animated woman. Taylor is now in a new relationship with a man she met in the online roleplaying game World of Warcraft."
Link to Original Source

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