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Link Between Salt and High Blood Pressure 'Overstated'

abies Re:Water Retention? (291 comments)

Hmm and if you fart, your blood pressure decreases? Because it is obvious that that compressed gas in bowels was getting your 'generally more pressurised'? There can be even a correlation between holding your fart in public getting your blood pressure higher ("Not now, not now, she will think I'm horrible").

about a week ago
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Unpopular Programming Languages That Are Still Lucrative

abies Re:Supply vs demand not popularity which matters (383 comments)

I'm not saying anything of that. I was saying that:
- it is a job for a programmer, not for trader
- that is is possible to get neccessary experience in just few years to qualify for such job (if you are good)
- that key part here is that you know the domain (investment banking), rather than C# itself
I think that we agree on all that? And this is point I want to make - instead of learning C+-%&^!, train into well paying industry and utilize whatever skills you already have.

Said that, few more points:
- it is a lot easier to get into such positions starting from good IT background and then learning finance on the job rather than having financial background and learning how to program
- there are positions where they will accept good people without financial background for money which is still considerably bigger (2x?) than anything in web-programming
- there are positions where they will accept very good people without financial background for exactly same money (I was hiring for one few months ago, where we were looking for soft/hard-realtime programmers, paying normal investment banking daily rates)
- it is not just 8-5 job in many cases, but it is not as scary as stories about game development crunches (unless you get into small hedge funds, but then you are asking for that...)

From my experience, biggest issue to overcome for people from 'outside' is not lack of financial knowledge, but rather mindset. A lot of programmers enjoy living in walled garden, with requirements coming in controlled agile fashion, well defined sprints, not caring about final deliveries after unit/integration tests have run, not having to face end users pointing your mistakes to you and abstracting away clients to be far away evil. But that is separate story.

about a week ago
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Unpopular Programming Languages That Are Still Lucrative

abies Re:Supply vs demand not popularity which matters (383 comments)

I can read. It is C# job for programmer, not for trader. It is C# frontend development, most probably to display UI for risk metrics for daily trading. Yes, you need to have experience with working in investment banking, same way as you won't get accepted into certain jobs without knowing browser quirks, physics or whatever is needed in given environment. As for getting accepted without finance background for similar jobs - indeed it might be hard, but everybody starts somewhere, people are not born with that knowledge. There are offers which accept good programmers even without background in that area (not contracts, but still good money) and in few years you already will get the experience.
You might be confused with some job offers which call for quants - these are indeed quite different profile, where programming is secondary requirement (but it will be mostly C++, not java/C# and it will mention quantitive finance somewhere in requirements). Plus they pay better.

In any case, it is what I'm talking about. Experience in proper domains will earn you a lot more money than experience proper languages. I know about investment banking and game companes, so I gave these examples, but similar discrepancies might exists in other industries. You just need to get out of the mindset of "I'm programmer so I can code in A whatever you throw at me with no knowledge of domain" to "I'm expert in domain XYZ and can code that in any language you ask me for (with preference for A and B)"
And no, HTML or J2EE is not a 'domain' in my understanding. Investment banking, 3d games, biotechnology, nuclear simulation, GIS etc is what I mean.

about a week ago
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How Scientific Consensus Has Gotten a Bad Reputation

abies Re:Pseudoscience (770 comments)

Wieslaw Maslowski. He later defended it with "I was very explicit that we were talking about near-ice-free conditions and not completely ice-free conditions in the northern ocean". In any case, we are quite far from near-ice-free conditions as well.

about a week ago
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Unpopular Programming Languages That Are Still Lucrative

abies Supply vs demand not popularity which matters (383 comments)

I would probably avoid looking into Clojure or Scala to make money based on popularity. Problem is that these languages are 'cool' which means that there is considerable amount of good programmers playing with them in free time and willing to take a job where they could code in that. Let's say that there are
- 2 million java programmers
- 2.1 million java jobs
Doesn't look good? But if you compare it to (completely random numbers)
- 50k Clojure programmers
- 1k Clojure jobs
Then the fact that there is 40 times less Clojure that java programmers is not going to help you much.

If you are trying to game the popularity, you need to find languages platform which are in some demand, skillset is rare and they are horrible to work with. With that, you may get into job which you will hate, but you will be paid a good money and have job security.

Look what is happening with game development. So many people want to work there that you work very long hours and pay is very low. I knew some people who were willing to get pay cut to switch from Java to Scala. They weren't learning Scala to earn more, but to have fun again.

From my experience, domain you work in has a lot bigger factor in salary than platform. Investment banking people will earn same money, regardless if they code C#, java, C++ or python, but might get considerably different packages based on domain knowledge and actual skill. Game developers will be paid badly regardless if they do Flash, Android (talking about salaries, not indie games) or C++.

Switching language in same industry can give you maybe 20-30% salary increase? Switching industries can double or triple it.

Examples:
C# developer with 5 years experience in banking
http://jobview.monster.co.uk/C...
600-700 GBP per day (which gives 130-150k yearly)
plus plenty of other 500-600 GBP per day jobs.

Web C# jobs outside banking (same city)
30-50k GBP yearly
and no offer for daily contracts.

Learning Scala just to move from 30k to 35k job is not worth it. If you want money, go for proper industry. Learn languages/platforms if you want to have fun in work - but then base it on what you want, not what is best paid.

about a week ago
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How Scientific Consensus Has Gotten a Bad Reputation

abies Re:Pseudoscience (770 comments)

Please enlighten me. Unfortunately, it seems that all youtube traces of original interview were eredicated. From what I got (not from blogs, but from newspaper articles - but indeed, I have not done throughout check on the newspaper owners and political leanings, so they might have their own agenda), he claimed very strongly that ice cap will be gone by 2013 (for German TV). Then, in in another interview, he claimed it will be completely gone in 10 years or so. THEN in 2009, in Copenhagen, he started to hedge himself saying "_75%_ chance that it will be _mostly_ gone in 10 years".

So yes, please provide me with context which caused him to change his wording during this short period. From what propaganda says, climate scientists have approached him themselves saying he misinterpreted the findings, so he changed the talk for Copenhagen conference.

about two weeks ago
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How Scientific Consensus Has Gotten a Bad Reputation

abies Re:Pseudoscience (770 comments)

Of course nobody is going to release models after training them on x-y and seeing that y-z fails - so it is as good as training them on x-y-z. It is only after this gets published and z' comes where you can see how wrong you were. And when you are wrong, answer is 'this is weather, not climate'. And when you are wrong for 10 years in row, nobody remembers your claims already.

To quote: "Entire north polar ice cap will be gone in 5 years". Predicted at 2008. I'm NOT saying that polar cap is healthy or that it is recovering long-term - but this just show how crap predictions can be made by climate celebrities. Training your climate model on last 20 years of anomalies is not giving you ANY insight about what will happen in 50 years from now. You can be wrong by order of magnitude each direction.

Saying 'putting CO2 into atmosphere is causing GW and can possibly destabilize biosphere and fire up domino-effects causing extinction event' is ok. Saying 'based on last million of years of non-AGW and 20 years of AGW, I predict temperature in 100 years will be higher between 0.8 and 4.2C globally' is just bullshit.

It is especially fun with futurologists. Some of top ones these days are already after one round of completely failed predictions (predicting in 1995 that we will have some ground-breaking tech in 2005, but it looks like we are 30+ years away from it even in 2014), but still people listen to them when they are making predictions about 2025 and 2035...

about two weeks ago
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Canada Tops List of Most Science-Literate Countries

abies Re:Could have fooled me (221 comments)

Isaac Newton was a devout Christian. Does that mean he was "scientifically illiterate"?

I would rather disagree with devout _Christian_
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/R...
[...]
not holding to Trinitarianism.'In Newton's eyes, worshipping Christ as God was idolatry, to him the fundamental sin'
[...]
Newton refused viaticum before his death.
[...]

Yes, he was a person of faith, but he was very far from being Christian - both in his times meaning and in contemporary meaning.

about three weeks ago
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Why Women Have No Time For Wikipedia

abies What about real encyclopedias? (579 comments)

How the percentages look like for normal, old-school encyclopedias? I know that for example in case of school textbooks gender ratio might be even skewed towards woman (at least in my country) - which is probably a side effect of majority of teachers being woman (83%). But encyclopedias? I cannot find any data on data - but looking at chief editors of Brittanica, all of them were man...

I think that problem lies somewhere before age of 25. At some point during early education, there is some kind of bias/peer pressure/whatever which makes woman being interested in other things. Putting Hello Kitty pictures in background of wikipedia is not going to help afterwards ;)

about three weeks ago
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How the Ancient Egyptians (Should Have) Built the Pyramids

abies Carry them? (202 comments)

2.5 ton with 50 people means 50kg per person. Given proper poles/etc, they could as well carry this block... not neccesarily nice work, but make it 100 people, add few whips and you have something working in long run.

about three weeks ago
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Fifth Edition Dungeons and Dragons Player's Handbook Released

abies Monsters/encounters are bland (203 comments)

Biggest issue I see with 5e so far (compared to 4e) is how bland monsters and encounters are. (please don't tell me that I can change it if I wish, I'm talking about D&D as presented by WotC and official adventures). Gone is interesting terrain setup, with 3 types of goblins working together, each having distinct abilities. We are now back to 2nd edition style of
15. Storage room. 1d3+1 orcs. Orc: 20hp, AC 15, sword +5 to hit, 1d8+3 dmg
16. Bedroom. 1 giant bedbug. Giant bedbug: 25hp, AC 16, bite +4 to hit, 1d8+2 dmg

I suppose that part of it is because they removed board as required part of the game, so it is a harder to come up with big number of distinct abilities. Still, as far as 'tactical game', 5e seems to be a complete failure to me so far.

Of course, if somebody hated 4e because of the combat, he will feel different... but if you don't like combat, I don't think that D&D variants are best system out there for you...

about a month ago
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Facebook Tests "Satire" Tag To Avoid Confusion On News Feed

abies Facebook failed to spot satire? (131 comments)

I suppose that people who sent the petition forgot to put [satire] tag in front of it as well and now are bit scared of what they have started...

about 1 month ago
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"Intelligent" Avatars Poised To Manage Airline Check-In

abies Flight to Uncanny Valley departing from terminal 1 (102 comments)

I think that going through tree of discrete selections has a better solution in touchscreen than in glorified answer-phone system with space-wasting avatar visualisation.
Maybe they could prototype it first by putting terminals videoconferencing to live people which could not fully understand what you are telling them (certain offshore locations come into mind) and see how much it improves the passenger checkin quality. If it works perfectly, THEN they can solve problem of video lines by generating almost-human computer avatars. I have a feeling that people will prefer impersonal selections to videoconference...

about 2 months ago
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Russia Prepares For Internet War Over Malaysian Jet

abies Re:Who benefits (503 comments)

The separatists still had no motive to shoot down a civilian airliner.

But we know they had no idea it was civilian plane - they were cheering destruction of military airplane on Twitter for some time, before realizing it was civilian.

And if the Kiev authorities are directing civilian aircraft to fly over an active war zone they are still to blame, whoever actually pulled the trigger.
(That is to say if they did. It might have been a pilot error.)

This is interesting thing to see. Have they been forced on this path by Ukraine air control? Or have they asked Ukraine for permission due to weather conditions (for example) and Ukraine just allowed? And according to latest developments it looks like BUK they got from Ukraine was indeed non functioning and one which was used was fresh import from Russia, so Ukraine (or at least civilian air control) could as well had no idea about capability to destroy high-flying targets.

Who knows, maybe it will even turn out that somebody in Ukraine has pushed this plane into dangerous territory hoping for trigger happy separatists. It would be quite bad and there will be political backlash - but still, people pulling the trigger are the ones which are truly responsible.

about 2 months ago
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Russia Prepares For Internet War Over Malaysian Jet

abies Re:Who benefits (503 comments)

Separatist have motive - they are trying to shoot Ukrainian military planes. They have means - they were showing BUK launchers themselves, Ukraine later said that they won't be able to operate them, but might have been wrong, especially given technical support from next country.
They had means and motive. And no clue this is rerouted civilian plane, because despite having enough capability to fire BUK (few people with neccessary skills), they weren't up to date on flightwatch... and decided to not ask on radio first.

So, in certain sense it is an accident. Same kind of accident as when sniper tries to kill person A, but person B moves in the way at last second. Sniper is still at fault, even if he had no motive to kill person B.

about 2 months ago
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IEEE Spectrum Ranks the Top Programming Languages

abies Re:Java is the new COBOL (197 comments)

I started to enjoy it again since I started using xtend (http://www.eclipse.org/xtend/). I suppose that same holds true for people switching to Scala/Kotlin.
Basically, you get expresiveness/tersity of python (often even better/more readable), while preserving performance (sub-second executions aside) and all the library support. Java-the-language might be going direction of COBOL, java-the-platform can be still enjoyable.

about 2 months ago
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Neanderthals Ate Their Veggies

abies Re:Cooked! (151 comments)

No, because animals do not control fire. But there are animals which warm/freeze/ferment/marinate/flavor/wash their food (not all done by same type animal of course). But cooking as in 'having control over 200+C heat source' - no.

about 3 months ago
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Match.com, Mensa Create Dating Site For Geniuses

abies Re:IF.. (561 comments)

No, because vaccines have no relation to autism.
IF there would be a:
- vaccines contain X amount of lead
- X amount of lead causes autism
AND there would be a correlation between vaccines and autism, I would happily say 'vaccines cause autism', instead of saying 'it is just lead which causes autism, fact that vaccines contain lead is irrelevant, because injecting pure lead would also cause autism'

People from certain racial minorities have lower IQ. It is caused by social inequality, not genetics ('lead', not 'weak patogens' in false vaccine example), but let's not get PR into our statements.

Of course, EVEN if there would be genetic relation by few percent, it would not give anybody right to dismiss specific person just based on that. We are talking about averages and very small differences. But if we are allowing people to discriminate by saying 'your are from poor family, so you are probably stupid', we should allow as well discriminating by 'your skin is blue, blues are generally poor, so you are probably stupid'. If we are not allowing to discriminate based on 'probably stupid' because every human is different etc, then it doesn't matter if it is race related or socioeconomic related guess.

about 3 months ago
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Match.com, Mensa Create Dating Site For Geniuses

abies Re:IF.. (561 comments)

Hmm. So;
- people of race X are more likely to come from poor background on average
- people coming from poor backgrounds have less IQ on average
is ok, but saying:
- people of race X have less IQ on average
is already contrafactual. So, in same way:
- 1/3 of cars of brand X have ignition locks of type Y, as opposed to 1/10 of other car manufacturers
- ignition locks of type Y are more prone to getting car on fire
will be ok, but saying:
- cars of brand X are more prone to get on fire
will be already wrong?

Car analogy ticked off. Let's try Nazis:
- most SS officers in WW2 were German
- most killings in death camps were done by SS officers
does not imply
- most killings in death camps during WW2 were done by Germans
because no Germans who were not SS officers have done any killing, so correlation is purely between SS and killings?

Ok, two analogies ticked. To reassume - you let your political correctness cloud your logic. A->B->C implies A->C. Fact that A doesn't cause C _directly_ doesn't mean it does not imply it. You can split any problem into substeps. I throw rock at window, it flies in the air, it breaks the window, it is air/rock fault window got broken, not mine...

about 3 months ago

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