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Comments

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Ask Slashdot: When Is It Better To Modify the ERP vs. Interfacing It?

dcollins Re:No matter how common you think it is... (156 comments)

MS Ribbon encourages that kind of mindless position-process because you can't even talk about it without words attached. All you can do is grunt and point at the cave paintings.

4 hours ago
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Lots Of People Really Want Slideout-Keyboard Phones: Where Are They?

dcollins Re:Where are the buggy whip dealers? (540 comments)

True, but that's a separate issue. The point is, the claim that a sample size of 49 is insufficient (and instead needs to be 10,000) is totally false.

2 days ago
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The NSA's New Partner In Spying: Saudi Arabia's Brutal State Police

dcollins Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (125 comments)

None of these count as either citations, or even support your original statements. (a) A citation is a short on-topic quote with reference on where to find it -- it is not the entirety of a book, video, or article. (b) All of these sources actually say that Israelis are to blame, except that some Israeli military spokesperson makes a claim that "maybe" Hamas is to blame. I don't see anything here about your GP claim that "You mean the hospital where snipers were shooting at soldiers? Bet you also turn a blind eye to them transporting terrorists around in ambulances.", it's completely off-topic.

Congratulations, I am now even more convinced that you are a BS propagandist. Try again if you like.

2 days ago
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Lots Of People Really Want Slideout-Keyboard Phones: Where Are They?

dcollins Re:Where are the buggy whip dealers? (540 comments)

"Way below the margin of error."

False. Sample size and margin of error aren't even commensurable quantities (not even same units). The only requirements for estimating a population proportion are (a) a random sample, and (b) at least 5 "yes" and 5 "no" responses in the sample. As someone else pointed out, the margin of error here would be about 14%, at the 95% confidence level, assuming a randomized sample. (Weiss, Introductory Statistics, 9E, Section 12.1.)

Ladies and gentlemen: The parent post is what it looks like when someone tries to BS you with fancy words that they don't understand.

3 days ago
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Earth In the Midst of Sixth Mass Extinction: the 'Anthropocene Defaunation'

dcollins Re:But what IS the point they're making? (333 comments)

"A lot of this hysterical screaming about how we're destroying the planet seems a lot like hubris. On certain level, the idea that we have that much power pleases the egos of some people."

Holy god, these "argument by hubris and ego" debates are so fucking stupid. Look, they can always be flipped around the other way: "People believing they can exponentially expand in population without suffering the same limits as any other species sounds like hubris. The idea that we can do whatever we want without consequences pleases the ego of people."

See? It always cuts both ways, Such a stupid thing to hang an argument on. Scientific data or GTFO.

5 days ago
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Earth In the Midst of Sixth Mass Extinction: the 'Anthropocene Defaunation'

dcollins Re: Not news (333 comments)

Guys like him fantasize about living in a sci-fi film so bad (Blade Runner, Foundation series, Martian Chronicles, whatever) that they will the poetically tragic destruction of life on Earth, so long as it better motivates us to become spacemen. The first might happen, the second won't, but they do like to imagine.

5 days ago
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Earth In the Midst of Sixth Mass Extinction: the 'Anthropocene Defaunation'

dcollins Re:It is their fault. (333 comments)

It's totally the Great Filter.

5 days ago
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SLS Project Coming Up $400 Million Short

dcollins Re:Sad (132 comments)

See: Machiavelli's The Prince.

about a week ago
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Switching From Microsoft Office To LibreOffice Saves Toulouse 1 Million Euros

dcollins Re:French dialog boxes (293 comments)

Don't worry: someday they'll have another decades-long African occupation, or nuke somebody, and then Droolin' Joe Sixpack will be making the opposite joke for the next half-century.

about a week ago
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Switching From Microsoft Office To LibreOffice Saves Toulouse 1 Million Euros

dcollins Re:The real question (293 comments)

Translation: "I am butthurt that I've been whipped in the productivity game. By a municipality. In France."

about a week ago
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Switching From Microsoft Office To LibreOffice Saves Toulouse 1 Million Euros

dcollins Re:sure, works for France (293 comments)

Oh, to live in a libertarian paradise where everything on earth is explainable within the first week of Econ 101.

about a week ago
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Switching From Microsoft Office To LibreOffice Saves Toulouse 1 Million Euros

dcollins Re:sure, works for France (293 comments)

"Vacation time is not something that government can force an employer to add on top of your salary"

Demonstrably false.

about a week ago
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Man Booted From Southwest Flight and Threatened With Arrest After Critical Tweet

dcollins Re:Is there an SWA Twitter police? (890 comments)

"Where do you work, I wonder, that you believe people who have flaws, like we all do, should be treated like used tissues?"

Probably a place where police/SWAT don't show up with machine guns if he whines "Timmy's being mean to me".

about a week ago
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Windows 9 To Win Over Windows 7 Users, Disables Start Screen For Desktop

dcollins Re:Hmm... (681 comments)

Probably not that predictable. The atrocity at that point might be: must be implanted in your butt to work, or automatically sniffs out and takes control of your car or flying drone, etc.

about a month ago
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Windows 9 To Win Over Windows 7 Users, Disables Start Screen For Desktop

dcollins Re:One switch to rule them all? (681 comments)

"effecience was improved"

I'm sure it was.

about a month ago
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IRS Lost Emails of 6 More Employees Under Investigation

dcollins Re:No Democratic groups were targeted (465 comments)

'At least, I think those bars are showing percentages."

Can you not read the label on the y-axis? It says, "APPEARANCES ON THE WATCH LIST".

And anyway, the 3rd bar (the next one higher than Tea Party groups) is for "Acorn Successors", ACORN being the group that many Republicans blame for electing Obama in the first place. So your arguments seem to be in a shambles.

about a month and a half ago
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MIT Researchers Can Take Your Pulse, Right Through the Walls

dcollins Horseshit (125 comments)

"The research could be used for health-tracking apps, baby monitors, and for the military and law enforcement."

Yeah, lead with the health-tracking and baby monitors, which actually benefits the subject, such that the subject would happily allow a monitor right next to them, and thus "through the walls" monitoring will never, ever get used.

Bury the bit about using it shoot people who break a drug law, or a resister of some foreign tyranny, in a way that they never have a chance to see it coming, which is how this will actually get used.

Ugh.

about a month and a half ago
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The Sci-Fi Myth of Killer Machines

dcollins Re:Human nature (222 comments)

"humans are not all good guys looking out for societies interests, but their own."

Let me flip this a bit. Most humans are empathetic and actually do look out for those in their community around them (society, if you wish to call it that). But a small number are indeed sociopaths who look out only for themselves. From a game-theory perspective, the more Utopian a society becomes (i.e., trusting of others), the more advantage and profit there is to being a scam-artist sociopath. So there is a hard-core selection for a small number of these people. In fact, it does seem likely that our institutions and governments are more often run by sociopaths than otherwise. Being willing to step on another man's neck is fairly rare but does have its rewards, unfortunately.

about 2 months ago

Submissions

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Facebook Silently Removes Ability to Download Your Posts

dcollins dcollins writes  |  about a year ago

dcollins (135727) writes "Facebook has a "Download Info" capability that I've used regularly since 2010 to archive, backup, and search all the information that I've written and shared there (called "wall posts"). But I've discovered that sometime in the last few months, Facebook silently removed this largest component from the Downloaded Info, locking up all of your posted information internally where it can no longer be exported or digitally searched. Will they reverse course if this is publicized and they're pressured on the matter?"
Link to Original Source
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Udacity Statistics is Awful

dcollins dcollins writes  |  about 2 years ago

dcollins writes "As a college instructor specializing in statistics, I felt compelled to survey one of the massive-enrollment online education courses that are all the rage these days. This summer, it seemed a perfect opportunity when Udacity unveiled Introduction to Statistics by founder Sebastian Thrun (of Google autonomous car fame). Having taken the entire course through to the final exam, my overall assessment is: It's amazingly, shockingly awful. Some nights I got seriously depressed at the notion that this might be standard fare for college lectures encountered by many students during their academic careers. I've tried to pick out the Top 10 problems with the course structure and address them in detail."
Link to Original Source
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Director of IT the #1 Most-Hated Job

dcollins dcollins writes  |  more than 2 years ago

dcollins writes "CNBC reports on a CareerBliss.com job-satisfaction survey. The #1 most hated job: Director of Information Technology. From the slideshow:

"... IT directors reported the highest level of dissatisfaction with their jobs, far surpassing that of any waitress, janitor, or bellhop. Of those who responded to the survey, one simple, five-word response summed up the antipathy very well: 'Nepotism, cronyism, disrespect for workers.'""

Link to Original Source
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Germany to End Nuclear Power by 2022

dcollins dcollins writes  |  more than 3 years ago

dcollins writes ""Germany on Monday announced plans to become the first major industrialised power to shut down all its nuclear plants in the wake of the disaster in Japan, with a phase-out due to be wrapped up by 2022... Germany has 17 nuclear reactors on its territory, eight of which are currently off the electricity grid... Already Friday, the environment ministers from all 16 German regional states had called for the temporary order on the seven plants to be made permanent... Monday's decision is effectively a return to the timetable set by the previous Social Democrat-Green coalition government a decade ago. And it is a humbling U-turn for Merkel, who at the end of 2010 decided to extend the lifetime of Germany's 17 reactors by an average of 12 years, which would have kept them open until the mid-2030s.""
Link to Original Source
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Poll: How should poll numerical increments be set?

dcollins dcollins writes  |  more than 3 years ago

dcollins (135727) writes "(1) Linear (0,10,20,30,40, etc.)
(2) Binary (1,2,4,8,16,32, etc.)
(3) Logarithmic (1,10,100,1000, etc.)
(4) Exponential (1,3,7,20,55,148,etc.)
(5) Preferred numbers (1,2,5,10,20,50, etc.)
(6) Renard numbers (1,1.5,2.5,4,6,10,15, etc.)
(7) Comical (i, e, pi, etc.)"
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Video Games Shown to Hinder Learning in Young Boys

dcollins dcollins writes  |  more than 4 years ago

dcollins (135727) writes "Researchers at Denison University in Ohio show that giving PlayStations to young boys leads to slower progress in reading and writing skills:

"The study is the first controlled trial to look at the effects of playing video games on learning in young boys. That is to say, the findings aren't based on survey data of kids' game habits, but instead on a specific group of children that were randomly assigned to receive a PlayStation or not... Those with PlayStations also spent less time engaged in educational activities after school and showed less advancement in their reading and writing skills over time than the control group, according to tests taken by the kids. While the game-system owners didn't show significant behavioral problems, their teachers did report delays in learning academic skills, including writing and spelling.""

Link to Original Source
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Open Source Computer Literacy Textbook?

dcollins dcollins writes  |  more than 4 years ago

dcollins writes "The college where I work has decided to forego ordering a textbook for the computer class that I teach this fall. Does anyone know of a free, open-source textbook for basic computer literacy concepts (overview of hardware, software, operating systems, and file systems)?"
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Drug Tests for Benefits in Some States

dcollins dcollins writes  |  more than 5 years ago

dcollins writes "From the AP: "Lawmakers in at least eight states want recipients of food stamps, unemployment benefits or welfare to submit to random drug testing... 'Nobody's being forced into these assistance programs,' said Craig Blair, a Republican in the West Virginia Legislature who has created a Web site — notwithmytaxdollars.com — that bears a bobble-headed likeness of himself advocating this position. 'If so many jobs require random drug tests these days, why not these benefits?'" ( http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090326/ap_on_bi_ge/states_welfare_with_strings ) I don't usually think that "slippery slope"-type arguments are that much of an actual danger, but here we find a lawmaker directly making that proposal as a straight-faced call to action."
Link to Original Source
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No More Open Gaming for D&D

dcollins dcollins writes  |  more than 5 years ago

dcollins (135727) writes "In 2000 the 3rd Edition of D&D came in conjunction with an Open Gaming Licence (OGL), modelled on the GPL with the same business motivations ( http://www.wizards.com/dnd/article.asp?x=dnd/md/md20020228e ). Today it was revealed, in a turnabout from comments as recently as last week, that there will be no OGL for the upcoming 4th Edition of D&D. Instead there will be a "Game System License" with many more restrictions on its use — for example, no third-party publishers in 2008 without a $5,000 advance license fee ( http://www.enworld.org/showthread.php?t=218031 )."
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Burn Salt Water with Radio Waves

dcollins dcollins writes  |  more than 6 years ago

dcollins (135727) writes "From Yahoo News:

An Erie cancer researcher has found a way to burn salt water, a novel invention that is being touted by one chemist as the "most remarkable" water science discovery in a century.

John Kanzius happened upon the discovery accidentally when he tried to desalinate seawater with a radio-frequency generator he developed to treat cancer. He discovered that as long as the salt water was exposed to the radio frequencies, it would burn.

The discovery has scientists excited by the prospect of using salt water, the most abundant resource on earth, as a fuel.

http://green.yahoo.com/index.php?q=node/1570"
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Slot Machine with Bad Software: Players To Jail?

dcollins dcollins writes  |  about 7 years ago

dcollins (135727) writes "Numerous Slashdot threads turn into a debate over who's liable for faulty software: the programmers, the publisher, etc. Here's a new option: perhaps the users are themselves criminally liable. From the AP: ( http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070719/ap_on_fe_st/ge nerous_slot_machine ): "Prosecutors are considering criminal charges against casino gamblers who won big on a slot machine that had been installed with faulty software... A decision on whether to bring criminal charges could come in a couple of weeks, said John Colin, chief deputy prosecutor for Harrison County. He said 'criminal intent' may be involved when people play a machine they know is faulty.""
Link to Original Source

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