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New Study Confirms Safety of GM Crops

Tikkun Re:Crazy vs. Evil (571 comments)

This is originating in France for a reason. GMO crops have prompted riots in that country.

The French have rioted about having to work 7 hours a day. It would be newsworthy if they dealt with an issue in a calm and reasonable fashion.

more than 2 years ago

Do You Really Need a Smart Phone?

Tikkun Get a smart phone already (851 comments)

Seriously. It will change your life. So many crappy things in life are made simple and easy by owning one. It's worth the $80-$100 a month you pay for service.

more than 2 years ago

Violent Games Credited With Reducing Crime Levels

Tikkun Re:Not the cause. (209 comments)

I notice this with my 12 year old son. He wants to be online and talk and chat and play games instead of doing anything that is actually connected to real people or that requires that he use his actual skills or body.

Although I've failed the Turing test a number of times, I promise you I am a real human being that is using his real human fingers to type on a real keyboard that sends real electronic impulses that are interpreted by computer hardware and software made by real people that send real network traffic over switches and routers configured by real people to servers built and maintained by real people and eventually sent back over the previously mentioned real network to be converted by real software and hardware into light that is seen with your real eyes and turned into something understandable via electrical impulses in your real brain.

If you want your son to be equipped to deal with the real world, make sure he reads books and learns to type. Everything else is finding out what you're interested in and working hard towards it.

tl;dr "What is real? How do you define real? If you're talking about what you can feel, what you can smell, what you can taste and see, then real is simply electrical signals interpreted by your brain."

more than 3 years ago

NATO Report Threatens To 'Persecute' Anonymous

Tikkun another quote from a NATO official (388 comments)

"Anonymous penetrate and ravage delicate public and privately owned computer systems, infecting them with viruses, and stealing materials for their own ends. These people, they are terrorists."

more than 3 years ago

Google Is Serious, Chrome 13 Hides URL Bar

Tikkun Re:If my clients are any indication few will notic (417 comments)

Many modern cars already have so many different things going on in the background that they're half driven by wire anyway. Taking this to the next step where you tell the car where to drive is progress and would likely result in many fewer dying in accidents.

Power tools are actually a great example of dumbing down things for safety's sake. The $20 drill you get at home depot that can barely go through an Ikea table isn't what people that make buildings for a living use and will do far less damage to you if your hand slips. More importantly, there are no metaphors to get with a drill. You point it at something, pull the trigger and it drills. People still manage to injure themselves on accident, as they are human. Ideally the drill would be able to look at where it's pointed at and *stop drilling* if it's looking at flesh.

Even airplanes are a great example. I have no idea how to fly a plane, but there is someone that can get paid a great deal of money to fly for me. All I have to do is figure out how to buy the damn tickets from a website somewhere (which could be made easier, really). And even pilots aren't controlling every element of the plane without assistance from a variety of computers.

Most people that use computers on a daily basis aren't computer experts. They're engineers, architects, scientists, lawyers, businesspeople, personal assistants, etc. The computers they use are tools to accomplish something. Some people get it, others don't. But forcing people to use metaphor after metaphor that has nothing to do with their jobs frequently doesn't result in someone that knows what the metaphors mean or how they interact, it simply results in someone that knows how to keep clicking a certain way until the black box gives them something the way it did in the past (at least until they upgraded it and everything moved around to make it more user friendly).

more than 3 years ago

Imagining the CLI For the Modern Machine

Tikkun Re:This is better how? (317 comments)

But they can cat an image and see a picture of a cat with a caption! That is totally more usable! ;)

more than 3 years ago

Google Is Serious, Chrome 13 Hides URL Bar

Tikkun Re:If my clients are any indication few will notic (417 comments)

When your system doesn't map to the brain of the user that needs to use it, you change the system. Expecting the user to change for the system is futile.

more than 3 years ago

University Proposes Tuition Based On Major

Tikkun Re:Why not free? (532 comments)

Nope. SSI and Medicare are pay as you go systems.

more than 3 years ago

US Contemplating 'Vehicle Miles Traveled' Tax

Tikkun Re:Sounds like hell (1306 comments)

I'm imagining the life you've created and how that will play out as you get older. Sitting in that efficiency staring at each other, kids sitting there wondering why you're too cheap to get a place where they don't have to stare at you 24 hours a day.

My significant other is a full time student. Living next to where she goes to college is really handy. I imagine we'll have more options in a few years when her income can be spent on something other than book and tuition. But given that neither of us want kids I'm pretty sure we'd be looking at either a 1 or 2 bedroom apartment or possibly a condo.

However, I'm not suggesting that people with kids move into the city, simply that they should consider something more dense than the suburbs. Taking my area as an example, I live in Capitol Hill in Seattle. I pay $905 a month in rent and utilities and am in an incredibly walkable area. If you're willing to live 6 miles away from downtown Seattle you can live in West Seattle and rent a 3 bedroom home for around $1600-$2000 a month *and still not need a car*. You're next to good schools, are within walking or biking distance of supermarkets and are away from all the "fun" stuff you might not want small children around while still being able to get them to the stuff you want them to experience. Want to take your kids to the Seattle Art Museum? You're one bus or bike ride away. Want to take them to some children's musical? Again, you're right there. Bike trails? Check. Want to drive 30 minutes so you can go hiking? Rent a zipcar for 5 hours (less than $50 in many cases, or $80 if you want it the whole day).

All of this may not be your thing. Which is great! People are different and should want different things. I want to experience a lot of things before I die. You really like having a lawn. But we all have choices, and your preferences don't mean that you only have the choice of living in a low density area and must drive a car everywhere. You can choose something else.

more than 3 years ago

US Contemplating 'Vehicle Miles Traveled' Tax

Tikkun Re:Sounds like a headache (1306 comments)

But that forumula almost presumes you can do without a car entirely, which most of us can't.

So ignore reality and create your own. ;)

Seriously though, I've been car free for years and zipcar (a car sharing service) helps a ton for those 4 times of a year when you must have a car. Other than that you just have to make lifestyle choices that make it easy to walk, bike and ride the bus.

I get that you like your lifestyle. I don't want to force you to live in the city and walk a block away to the supermarket, ride the bus 20 minutes to work, get off work and enjoy a happy hour with friends nearby, then catch an indie rock show at a dive bar and take the bus (or a taxi) home to enjoy some fine company with loved ones. Similarly, I hope you don't want to force me to have kids and live in a place that I spent the better part of my youth trying to get out of, just so they can go to a mediocre public school.

What I don't get is when people don't accept that these tradeoffs are *possible*. That I can make a middle class wage and still enjoy my life in my postage stamp sized studio with my significant other. Americans, even middle class ones, are extremely rich. We can chose what we want to spend our money and time on. And assuming that people with kids started moving into places that had some level of density we'd end up with better schools in those places with higher density. Just not big houses with lots of room for lots of crap.

And what do we really want for our kids? A place that bores the shit out of them so much that their choices are: "study like hell so they can leave" or "do drugs and fuck"? Because that is what suburban American was for myself and my friends growing up. I got out because I had good parents and was lucky. A lot of my friends didn't (even ones with good parents).

more than 3 years ago

Quad Core, Thunderbolt In New MacBook Pros

Tikkun Re:Buyer's remorse or Buyer's rejoice? (495 comments)

Why wasn't there an article about my laptop?

Your laptop isn't running OS X out of the box.

more than 3 years ago

US Government Strategy To Prevent Leaks Is Leaked

Tikkun Re:elephant in the room -- MOD PARENT UP! (336 comments)

Because the conventional wisdom in DC is that the CIA, the State Department and the rest of the government needs to be able to do quasi legal things in order to function.

more than 3 years ago

Mac OS X 10.6.6 Introduces App Store

Tikkun Re:Innovation (408 comments)

I'm pretty sure Redhat and Novell have profited from from the existence of package managers running on their distros, even if people aren't buying individual packages.

more than 3 years ago

Groklaw — Don't Go Home, Go Big

Tikkun Re:She's feeling abused? (230 comments)

Because I want to make money I can't possibly want to do anything else?

I'm not talking about individuals, but rather groups of people (queue Agent K quote).

Groups are more likely to be influenced by incentives (bad or good) than individuals. For example, I didn't start walking and riding the bus because I wanted future generations to be better off, I did it because I moved to the city and it's cheaper and easier. Many people living around me have been riding busses all their lives, even when they lived in the burbs. Most people in the US make the opposite call for the same reason I did.

What if all I care about with regard to money is having enough to live comfortably?

There are billions of people on Earth and they all have to figure out what to do every day. Given the vast amount of information contained in the market, better allocation of resources will generally occur when the market is influenced by what people really want (pay for) instead of what they say they want (free X). (note: as awesome as single payer healthcare may be, it isn't free)

You as an individual can make a choice to work part time, or work as a volunteer, or any number of different worthy goals. Non-profit companies are able to do great things (at least in the eyes of the people funding them), but given that they aren't working with a profit motive they cannot figure out how many widgets need to be made.

more than 3 years ago

Groklaw — Don't Go Home, Go Big

Tikkun Re:She's feeling abused? (230 comments)

If the goal of your company isn't to make money, it's a non-profit. If your company is a for-profit, the goal of the company is to make money.

In the case of the latter, how do you know you're making what people want? People tell you with money.

If you want different behavior from a for-profit company either convince other people to stop paying them or change the legal framework so that they need to do what you and the rest of your interest group want them to do. We have seatbelts, clean water, clean air, etc. because concerned people stood up and demanded them.

more than 3 years ago

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Announced for November 2011

Tikkun Re:Windows-only game? (231 comments)

Although I do have a Steam account and have bought a couple games for my Mac (Civ 4, Gratuitous Space Battles and Torchlight), most of my gaming time is spent either on my iPad or my PS3.

I am a gamer and I don't really care about "rigs". I care about having a good time. Which, hopefully, is the point of playing video games in the first place.

more than 3 years ago

The DIY Car Computer vs. the iPad

Tikkun Re:Depends on the use case you are going after (202 comments)

Can it play regular CDs or DVDs?

Why would you want to? Ripping legacy CDs and DVDs is easier than lugging them around.

Can you easily plug a thumb drive into it

Why would you want to? I've already got much of my music library on my iPad. If I want/need different songs I can always sync different genius mixes before I go to bed.

As for video, shows (or iTunes U) I've already watched are deleted automatically after I watch them, allowing me to keep up with lots of video without having to put in much work (other than subscribing).

Don't give end users forks. They will invariably stick them in their eyes, blame you for the pain and demand that you find a way to make it feel like rainbows and sunshine.

more than 3 years ago

Apple Awarded Anti-Sexting Patent

Tikkun Re:Parenting skills? (184 comments)

I'm pretty sure that if a child today doesn't have a cell phone and isn't amish, they have no friends. Parents, feel free to correct me if I'm wrong here.

more than 3 years ago


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