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Comments

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Study: Male Facial Development Evolved To Take Punches

adonoman Re:Sexual selection by the opposite sex. (190 comments)

The explanation I've heard for useless showy features (a la peacock) is that the ability to put resources into giant shiny feathers show that you have the ability to gather enough food to live, and have leftover energy to devote to impressing the ladies. It's not so much the particulars of what the feature is, but rather having resources (or money) to burn indicates that you're successful enough to be a good mate.

about 1 month ago
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C++ and the STL 12 Years Later: What Do You Think Now?

adonoman Re:Why use it? (435 comments)

Resource handling. Lower-level languages require you to manually release any resource you acquire. Every piece of heap allocated memory needs to be freed. Every file you open needs to be manually closed. Every network connection, mutex, or handle needs to be released. It's feasible to do, since you don't have to worry about exceptions. But it does require an incredible fastidiousness to make sure that you always clean up after yourself.

When you get to the higher level languages, you get garbage collection which means never having to manually release memory again. But everything else is stuck being released manually. You can't do it reliably in regular code, since exceptions get in the way, so they introduce things like finally or using. But again, you're relying on the people using the class to remember to clean up every single time they use it.

In C++ you can rely on stack-unwinding to clean up after you. I haven't checked in a "delete" in over 10 years of C++ coding. Every C resource we use gets a wrapper class that automatically releases it when the object is destroyed. It's really the biggest thing I miss when working in other languages.

about 3 months ago
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Duke Univ. Device Converts Stray Wireless Energy Into Electricity For Charging

adonoman Re:Units! (216 comments)

Maybe our gadgets need to come with cat cradles.

Professor Norton Nimnul has already beaten you to it.

about 9 months ago
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First Experimental Evidence That Time Is an Emergent Quantum Phenomenon

adonoman Re:Generalized Master Equation... (530 comments)

Out of genuine curiosity, can you point me to evidence showing the universe is non-deterministic? I'm not sure how one would go about making that kind of observation.

about 9 months ago
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First Experimental Evidence That Time Is an Emergent Quantum Phenomenon

adonoman Re:So... Parmenides was right after all? (530 comments)

Fair enough, and judging by some of the other responses, you were justified in your interpretation. I guess I overestimate /.'s rationalism. To be clear, I don't attribute Parmenides with any great insight into the quantum nature of the universe, anymore than I think that Democritus had any clue about what we've come to call "atoms". That being said, the line of reasoning on "what is" vs. "what is not" does have some interesting things to think about if time is indeed an emergent phenomenon.

about 9 months ago
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First Experimental Evidence That Time Is an Emergent Quantum Phenomenon

adonoman Re:So... Parmenides was right after all? (530 comments)

He obviously wasn't "right" in the sense of having anything useful to say about the world in any scientific sense - I would have thought that goes without saying. I just found the parallel amusing. You're reading a bit too much into an off-hand comment.

about 9 months ago
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First Experimental Evidence That Time Is an Emergent Quantum Phenomenon

adonoman So... Parmenides was right after all? (530 comments)

This sounds a lot like what he was saying 2500 years ago.

From Wikipedia:

In "the way of truth" (a part of the poem), he explains how reality (coined as "what-is") is one, change is impossible, and existence is timeless, uniform, necessary, and unchanging. In "the way of opinion," he explains the world of appearances, in which one's sensory faculties lead to conceptions which are false and deceitful.

about 9 months ago
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What Are the Genuinely Useful Ideas In Programming?

adonoman Re:the most basic data structures (598 comments)

I've interviewed for a company that required you to write out a stack implementation in C++ from scratch during the interview. It's a great problem, since it's quite easy to define, nearly everyone knows what is required, but it's complicated enough that when coding by hand on paper, every entry-level programmer is going to make a mistake, and you can see how they think when you tell them there's a mistake. Even when they get it right, you get a lot of insight into their problem-solving style by listening to them defend the design.

about 10 months ago
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How Human Psychology Holds Back Climate Change Action

adonoman Re: What's next Cass? (530 comments)

The paper is real, but its value as currency is only due to a collective agreement to value it as such.

about a year ago
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China Plans To Stop Harvesting Organs From Executed Prisoners

adonoman Re:I'll go ahead and say it (200 comments)

If a right can be forfeit, then it's no longer a right - it's a privilege. In a democracy, the ability to vote has to be one of THE fundamental rights that can never be taken away. Otherwise, you end up with the situation the US currently sees where large chunks of people are disenfranchised, and the government loses its claim to be representative of its citizens.

Whether you firearm ownership is a fundamental right, a secondary right that must yield to other more fundamental rights in a conflict, or a privilege that the government has the ability to revoke, makes a big difference as to whether you feel that any level of gun control is acceptable.

about a year ago
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China Plans To Stop Harvesting Organs From Executed Prisoners

adonoman Re:I hear they're outsourcing it... (200 comments)

Then why stop at harvesting organs? Why not use the dead as food? Why bother following a person's will, and just let the living do what they want with a person's estate?

about a year ago
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Ask Slashdot: Best Software For Med-School Note-Taking?

adonoman Re:Remember the one hour equals three hours rule. (217 comments)

I can't say that any of my university classes were so dense that there was three hours of information packed into a single lecture. I'd say half of them were about 10 minutes of information packed into an hour-long lecture and obfuscated to make it seem like there was more content that there was.

about a year ago
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Ask Slashdot: Best Software For Med-School Note-Taking?

adonoman Re:One Note? (217 comments)

This would seem to fit. When you search in OneNote it'll give you a list of all the pages that have that search term (including UCRing images, and searching through recorded audio).

about a year ago
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Ask Slashdot: How To Deliver a Print Magazine Online, While Avoiding Piracy?

adonoman Re:Fingerprint it! (298 comments)

But if you have to pay for a new subscription each time you get caught, there's a strong disincentive to keep making your copies available.

1 year,8 days
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Some Windows XP Users Can't Afford To Upgrade

adonoman Re:Should run on Win7 (953 comments)

Yup. The easiest is to upgrade to windows 7 Pro or Ultimate and install XP Mode

about a year ago
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"Micro-Gig" Sites Undermining Workers Rights?

adonoman Re:being your own boss (426 comments)

I'm not sure where your information is from, but, as far as breaks go, there's no federal legislation at all, it varies from province to province. Generally you're entitled to a half-hour break every 5 hours, which must be paid if you're required to remain on site, but can otherwise be unpaid.

There's no special provision anywhere for law-enforcement (except that the RCMP are not allowed to strike. Farm workers, commercial fishers, oil field workers, loggers, home care givers, professionals, managers and some categories of salespersons have special federal provisions in other areas of worker's rights.

about a year ago
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Ask Dr. Robert Bakker About Dinosaurs and Merging Science and Religion

adonoman Re:Monogenism (528 comments)

Paul does certainly use language that would appear to require a single "original fall" event by one person, but it's also likely, given the historical context and his generally lax exegesis of the old testament, that he's simply appropriating the Adam story out of context to make a point in contrast to Jesus. Certainly,there's a complete lack of reference in the Old Testament to Adam after Genesis 5, and no concept of original sin.

There also isn't a case in the bible where someone is condemned based on original sin, any punishment meted out to a person is based on a specific choice that person made. Bad things do happen to "good" people, it's true, but even Jesus denied that those were necessarily punishment for sin.

The concept of original sin is far from universally accepted in christianity. The concept of universal sin, is nearly universal, but inherrited sin isn't. Also, nearly all Protestant churches would deny that Mary was without sin, original or othewise.

about a year and a half ago
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Ask Dr. Robert Bakker About Dinosaurs and Merging Science and Religion

adonoman Re:Monogenism (528 comments)

Christianity commands all Christians

You're being awefully generallistic here. There's no such command in the Bible, and it's only tradition that leads to this being the accepted belief in many christian sects. Even in the bible itself, it's pretty clear that there were other people outside of Adam and Eve that Cain would have reason to fear after killing his brother. It's also fairly defensible to read the second creation story as the specific creation of the nation of Israel, and not the general creation of the world. Here, Adam is at most the first patriarch of Israel, and possibly just a symbolic one at that.

about a year and a half ago
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New Largest Known Prime Number: 2^57,885,161-1

adonoman Re:Uhhh... (254 comments)

Um.... let's try n=4. 2^4-1 = 15, so not a prime. You might want to read that wikipedia article a little closer.

about a year and a half ago

Submissions

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Pirate Party's North American Debut

adonoman adonoman writes  |  more than 3 years ago

adonoman (624929) writes "A 25-year-old Winnipeg businessman is the first Pirate Party of Canada candidate to run for federal election. Running on a limited budget, he tested out Canada's fair use laws by remixing existing signage. At the same time, the US and UK pirate parties have put out an open letter to Anonymous requesting that they cease Operation Payback's DDOS attacks and focus on taking a legal route to fix intellectual property law."
Link to Original Source
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Canadian Government brands copyright bill opponent

adonoman adonoman writes  |  more than 4 years ago

adonoman (624929) writes "The Canadian heritage minister is now comparing everyone opposed to Canada's upcoming DMCA law to terrorists. James Moore says, "the only people who are opposed to this legislation are really two groups of radical extremists." In a comment clearly directed at copyright expert Michael Geist he wants to "make sure that those voices who try to find technical, non-sensical, fear-mongering reasons to oppose copyright reform are confronted every step of the way and they are defeated.""
Link to Original Source
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Paul Graham releases Arc

adonoman adonoman writes  |  more than 6 years ago

adonoman (624929) writes "After years of teasing us with tidbits of his hundred year language, Paul Graham has finally released a preview of Arc. It's still in a very early stage, but it's at least something to fiddle around with, and see where he's trying to take this project.

It's not for everyone. In fact, Arc embodies just about every form of political incorrectness possible in a programming language. It doesn't have strong typing, or even type declarations; it uses overlays on hash tables instead of conventional objects; its macros are unhygienic; it doesn't distinguish between falsity and the empty list, or between form and content in web pages; it doesn't have modules or any predefined form of encapsulation except closures; it doesn't support any character sets except ascii. Such things may have their uses, but there's also a place for a language that skips them, just as there is a place in architecture for markers as well as laser printers.
"

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