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China Worried About Terrorist Pigeons

denzacar Color coded scare-o-meters are useless... (48 comments)

Hell, we once had a color coded scare-o-meter to tell people how nervous they should feel on any given day.

They should be numerically graded.

How else are we to know EXACTLY how nervous we should be?

44 minutes ago
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Nixie Wearable Drone Camera Flies Off Your Wrist

denzacar Vaporware... (63 comments)

Sure... You can tell it's the future cause the vaporware now comes as vaporwear.

From TFA:

Absolutely no information about availabilty seems to be listed anywhere, but if you head on over to the official website (linked to below), you can add your email to the company's mailing list to keep up-to-date.

And videos are just your run of the mill advertisement for imaginary products.
Showing diddly-squat of actual operation or even wearing of the product, while showing instead obviously fake videos of them throwing the "prototype" off screen (which does not even clip on to the hand at this point) and "drone footage" which is too well focused and stabilized to be from a wrist-mountable drone camera, obviously NOT wrist-mountable drones flying around, 3D renderings, and not even a single 360-degree shot to prove it was done with at least a camera hanging off of a drone (or a movable crane).

Oh... It's a part of a contest sponsored by Intel?
With prizes of $50,000 to finalists (10) and a $500,000 grand prize (1)?

Well why didn't you say so? I've got a design for a floating cloud sofa I could have entered.
It's like this only with an "intel inside" logo taped to it.

2 days ago
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Japan's Mt. Ontake Erupts, Stranding Hundreds of Hikers

denzacar Clearly... (41 comments)

...that's Godzilla.

Coming back to show the dissatisfaction with mere 6.8 imdb score for the latest iteration of the venerational spectacle.

3 days ago
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Irish Girls Win Google Science Fair With Astonishing Crop Yield Breakthrough

denzacar Re:Aaaah... shit... There's more. (308 comments)

Seriously you're living in your own world if you think Irish people are a "poor minority" in the social justice warrior sense.

What kind of a world do you live in when out of 4 distinct tropes you pick one as if it is the only one?

Weaker sex.
Poor minority.
Multiculturalism.
"Do no evil." Scout's honor.

And who mentioned anything about social justice warriors?
I'm not saying that Google is promoting any brand of "social justice". Whatever that may mean, as from my experience so far it means so many different things to so many people.

I'm saying that they are exploiting people's preconceived notions about what constitutes "Doing no evil", for the purposes of self-promotion as a "Do no evil" company.
Which they are, in this case, achieving by exploiting children for their various superficial and preconceived racial/gender/ethnic/economic_status/etc attributes and connotations attached to said attributes.
Instead of awarding them according to the merits of their projects.

3 days ago
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Irish Girls Win Google Science Fair With Astonishing Crop Yield Breakthrough

denzacar Re:Aaaah... shit... There's more. (308 comments)

You seem to think it's about sex and race.

Not sex and race.
Exploitation of perceived image which goes with certain sex, race, ethnicity...

Why do YOU think that helps them the most?

Because if you are a "first world" multibillion dollar behemoth, it is good for your image to offset some of the connotations that come with that territory, making you look like a big brotherish soulless corporation.
By presenting yourself as aligned with those on the opposite part of that spectrum.
I.e. The poor, the powerless, the weak... through exploitation of well known tropes.

Weaker sex.
Poor minority.
Multiculturalism.
"Do no evil." Scout's honor.

Here's one for you.
Why is this photo of kids winning a science fair, "better" than both this one and this one?
And I'm not talking about technical details like resolution or a nicer stage someone threw more money on.
I'm talking about kids.

What is it about them that makes them more appealing?
Here's a hint.
It has to do with the image of both the army and corporations in general and while it is a part of the two not-Google-fair images it is utterly obliterated from the Google's photo of kids.

Another hint - it's not the gender or the race of those kids. Some or all of those elements are in all the photos.

5 days ago
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Irish Girls Win Google Science Fair With Astonishing Crop Yield Breakthrough

denzacar Re:Aaaah... shit... There's more. (308 comments)

What? Like the minority ones mentioned above?

It ain't about boys or girls.
It's about Google picking the kids who will make them appear most "helping" in the photos.
Emphasis on appear. As in advertising.

about a week ago
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Irish Girls Win Google Science Fair With Astonishing Crop Yield Breakthrough

denzacar Re:Aaaah... shit... There's more. (308 comments)

germination speed by 50% is a decrease in germination time by 33%

Except, there is no reported decrease in germination time by 33%.

What they do report is:

In all test groups seeds treated with r.japonicum and r.leguminosarum germinated faster by approx 50% (p<0.001).

and

Based on our extensive experimental results we succeeded in showing statistically that two strains of Rhizobium bacteria can significantly accelerate the rate of crop germination (+40% for r.leguminosarum and 28% for r.japonicum; (p<0.0001).

While showing 13%, 40%, 28% and 23% reduced germination time.
So, not "all test groups".
Three of which are below your 33%. So, it is not a trend, or median, or average. Making that "approx" a weasel word.

How they got that number?
By taking the highest result for r.leguminosarum bacteria and barley (40% reduced germination time) and r.japonicum and oats (28%), adding them up and getting from that the average of 34%.
Does that sound like all test groups?

Or closer something to like saying that fertilizer A used on apples increases crop yield by 40%, and fertilizer B used on oranges increases the crop yield by 28%.
Which makes ALL FRUIT crop increase by 34% by using both fertilizers A and B.
Except it's NOT ALL fruit, NOR is it BOTH fertilizers, but SOME SPECIFIC fruit and SOME SPECIFIC fertilizers and MOST of them significantly LESS than the reported 34%.

That's weasel-wording to hide conflation of results and to get bigger and sexier numbers.
After getting their numbers through cherry picking.
Throw that outlier of r.leguminosarum bacteria and barley out and the average goes down to 21.3% reduction in germination time.
Instead, they threw out to lowest results and then averaged the highest ones.

Which allowed them to take the 26% average reduction of germination time for various combinations of plants and bacteria... ...or 26.5% for average for barley and 25.5% for oats. ...or 20.5% for r.japonicum and 31.5% for r.leguminosarum. ...and misreport it as 34% reduction in germination time for bacteria A and B in ALL cases. Averaging out apples and oranges.

And then present it as much sexier 50% increase in speed across the board.
Which is like treating reduction in some prices somewhere as an increase in all paychecks everywhere.

Also, note that they report their p-value as under 0.001 for ALL cases.
However, their "optimum concentration" result for barley has a significantly higher p-value of 0.0264.
Which they've reported as 0.001 in their graphs by knocking down their n to n=336 and thus reporting it as "1 day less".
While all their other reported cases had n=672.
That's p-hacking. Adjusting the experiment conditions to match the desired result.

So umm...

you display not only a sour attitude but poor math skills.

But thanks for pointing out that they didn't just misreport by accident - they purposefully cheated.

about a week ago
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Small Restaurant Out-Maneuvers Yelp In Reviews War

denzacar Re:No. (249 comments)

Thanks.

I'm gonna have issues with confirming my identity when crossing borders or identifying myself with my ID cards for whatever other reason.

My head is about two-three sizes bigger on my ID, my driver's license and on my passport, all of which I took out just before I started working on my weight and shape.
Didn't realize how hilarious is the difference until last night. How often do you look at your own photo on your ID, right?

about a week ago
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Irish Girls Win Google Science Fair With Astonishing Crop Yield Breakthrough

denzacar Aaaah... shit... There's more. (308 comments)

In short...
None of the stuff claimed is true and nobody at Google Science Fair apparently read their project report.
They won for being cute little girls. Possibly for having a puppy in the presentation for extra cuteness.

I initially wanted to correct myself on numbers above, cause it's just the germination that was up to 50% and Google Science Fair summary DOES state that the results showed "crop germination by up to 50%, and increased barley yields by 74%".

And then I checked the video and their results.
Which are both loaded with weasel words, omissions and plain old padding the numbers.

From the project documentation:
https://www.googlesciencefair....

The optimum concentration of r.japonicum for the germination of barley seeds was found to be 2x107CFU/ml (13% reduction; ANOVA p<0.0264).
R.leguminosarum had a positive effect on the germination of Barley and reduced germination time by approximately 40% at 25oc (ANOVA p<0.0001).
For Oats, an optimum concentration of 4x106 CFU/ml of r.japonicum was observed to be most efficient and resulted in a reduction in germination by 22 hours (28% Reduction; ANOVA p<0.0001).
Lower concentrations of r.leguminosarium were most effective on oat germination. A concentration of 16x104 CFU/ml reduced germination times from 86 to 66 hours (23% reduction; Dunnett test p<0.0001).

13%, 40%, 28% and 23% reduction in germination time for various crops. Reported as 50%.

Small Scale Agricultural Tests
 
    R.japonicum was seen to have a positive effect on the length and dry mass of barley crops. (+10.4% length increase:+13% dry mass; p<0.0328), the effect was more notable at higher concentrations.
    It was observed that Oats treated with a higher concentration of r.japonicum (4x106 CFU/ml) produced a greater dry mass (p=0.0248) and longer length (p=0.0043) than water treated seeds.

10.4% increase in length for barley.
13% increase in dry mass for barley and "a greater dry mass" for oats in small scale test.

Only problem is... length increase was noted for n=300 plants.
Dry mass increase for only n=24. Cherry picking? P-hacking?

You won't find those numbers in the text though. Only in the tiny low resolution graphs.

Large Scale Agricultural Tests
 
    Lower concentrations of r.japonicum (3x109 CFU/ml) with peat as a carrier were the most successful treatments (ANOVA p<.0001) and resulted in an average increase in plant dry mass of 0.284g/5 seedlings (74%).
    Spraying the seeds with aqueous culture post planting increased dry mass by a mean of 44% (Dunn p<0.0001)

74% increase (and 44% increase for an alternative method) in dry mass is there BUT...
It's dry mass of the entire plant. Roots and all. And this time, without the numbers on the length of the plants.
And no information on if there is correlation between the length of the plant and its weight.
I.e. Is it barley grain or barley grass?

Cause, as we are not talking about acres but of mass, crop yield of barley is just a fraction of the mass of the plant.
So "an average increase in plant dry mass" IS NOT "increased crop yield by an average of 30% with some results exceeding 70%", as stated in the conclusion.

This is just Google throwing money at anything that will make them look good.
No proof of results necessary. Just make it LOOK good.

Which gives me a very icky feeling of exploitation. Of children, minorities, certain genders...

2011 - three girls, from USA, two of them racial/ethnic minorities.
2012 - a "Caucasian" girl from USA, three boys from Spain (i.e. Latinos AND foreigners so it's a little more diverse and not all USA) and another "Caucasian" boy, from USA.
2013 - ethnic/racial minority boy from Australia, a "half Filipino" Canadian girl and an Asian boy from USA.
2014 - 3 "Caucasian" girls from Ireland, one from Canada, one Asian boy from USA and an ethnic/racial minority boy from India.

In Google America, only girls and Asians can science?
Or is it that "we are the world, we are the children" photos just look better?

about a week ago
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Irish Girls Win Google Science Fair With Astonishing Crop Yield Breakthrough

denzacar Error in summary. (308 comments)

Yield is increased up to 50%. As it is stated in the independent link.
NOT 74% as stated by inhabitat, that well known source of unreliable news.

http://googleblog.blogspot.ca/...

The girls determined that the bacteria could be used to speed up the the germination process of certain crops, like barley and oats, by 50 percent, potentially helping fulfill the rising demand for food worldwide.

http://www.independent.ie/busi...

It revolves around their discovery that bacteria which occur naturally in the soil can help kick-start the germination of some crops by as much as 50pc.

about a week ago
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Small Restaurant Out-Maneuvers Yelp In Reviews War

denzacar Re:No. (249 comments)

I've still got about 10 kilos or so that say otherwise. Used to be 20 though.

Then I got picky about HOW MUCH I eat and started eating less of what I like to eat. And what I don't like to eat.
Haven't lost the taste for any of it though.

about a week ago
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How Our Botched Understanding of "Science" Ruins Everything

denzacar Re:The article isn't any better. (794 comments)

I use to live in a 100+ year old house. The structure was ridiculously over done. 12x12 logs holing up the roof, The bricks were 5 layers deep. In essence it was engineered by someone without strong science knowledge. He just figured more is better

Seems to me that someone engineered it to last 100+ years.

As for bricks... 100+years ago there were no air conditioning devices to keep the heat out in the summer and most heating was done by burning wood or coal inside the house in the winter.
Such thick walls would sure come in handy for those circumstances.

about a week ago
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Small Restaurant Out-Maneuvers Yelp In Reviews War

denzacar Correction... (249 comments)

"...an agoraphobiAc."

about two weeks ago
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Small Restaurant Out-Maneuvers Yelp In Reviews War

denzacar No. (249 comments)

That's called neophobia.

That's called knowing WHAT you like, and knowing what you DON'T LIKE.
Some might call that wisdom, others might call it experience. Ancient Greeks used to call that "knowing your shit".

Or do you also call anyone who is not outside, in the open space, 24/7 an agoraphobic?

about two weeks ago
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Study Finds Link Between Artificial Sweeteners and Glucose Intolerance

denzacar Riiiiight... (294 comments)

I fear that it is the other way round.

Which can be noted from your conflation of several unrelated issues into a single one, without actual definition of a concrete question or an argument, because conflation is not based on logical reasoning but on a personal foregone conclusion you are working from.
Ergo, paragraphs like this, littered with stacked, incomplete, shotgun questions, extended into other questions:

Using the math you just listed, you honestly believe that people maintain this rate of weight gain purely through the difference in consumption vs output? Do Zucker rats become monstrously obese (at the expense of organs and muscle) on a calorie restricted diet because of ??? (Do they lack the willpower to resist food like other rats? and if not, why wouldn't their genetic make up have some corollary to human obesity?)

As you are not setting up theses with those questions (no argumentation following to prove or disprove) those are clearly just inquiries.
But, there is no single answer to all these questions, nor is there a way to provide argumentation which would answer them as a whole, as they are unrelated and even incomplete.

Seems to me that you have some personal belief about those rats and the issues regarding calories and obesity in general, which do not correspond to reality.
Which is clouding your reasoning regarding those subjects, by providing some kind of a reasoning shortcut known only to you, which allows you to treat those issues as a single, generalized one, while allowing you to ignore the obvious issues of such reasoning.

Like the fact that the Zucker rat argument carries no weight whatsoever as it is both an exception and an ENGINEERED exception to boot.
Those rats are tailored by the researchers through gene manipulation TO BE FAT and to be hungry, along with their brothers who are genetically tailored TO BE THIN.
On top of that, humans not being genetically manipulable laboratory animals... Zucker rats can't be used even as an analogy.

Which is why all your argumentation boils down to a single "Aaah, you don't get it" line.

about two weeks ago
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Study Finds Link Between Artificial Sweeteners and Glucose Intolerance

denzacar Re:Does HFCS count? (294 comments)

Rats are not humans.
Rats don't give a fuck about their health or physical fitness. Nor are they great at thinking long term.

As for Zucker rats... Ummm... You do know that they were DESIGNED TO BE LIKE THAT?
They are a mutation created for research purposes.

For all intents and purposes - those are not REAL RATS, any more than one could consider pekingese to be wolves.

Calories in/calories out is at best a proxy for what's really going on under the covers (ie, insulin, hormonal reasons)...

  ...

  ...but that doesn't mean it's correct.

Correct premise, wrong conclusion.

It IS correct. BUT... It is not the only factor at play. And "obesity" is a generalization.
There ARE genetic or health components involved - but not in the entire population.
On average though, reducing/limiting intake and/or exercise IS equal to weight loss.

Yes, and if you look at what food items constitute 100 calories, it should become plainly obvious that human beings lack the consistency and precision in choosing food and/or exercise in order to maintain weight like we do.

Sorry, but number of calories in "some food A" is in no way in correlation with "human beings lack(ing) the consistency and precision in choosing food".
I'm not really sure what was it you tried to say there.

Also, have you ever heard the phrase "work up an appetite" what do you suppose the body's very first reaction to burning those 100 calories is?

Ever heard of the phrase "Un bon mot ne prouve rien."?

Actually... After spending 100+ calories through exercise... They probably won't be hungry.
If anything, they'll be less hungry. IF they have some extra weight. They will be thirsty, though.
I only have personal anecdotal evidence for it, sorry, but I do have a theory why it is so regarding hunger.

From fasting for 72 hours with only ~30 calories per day, and from doing 10-15 minutes of light exercise each day (to stave off muscle loss) which would cause, then relieve the sense of hunger.
My guess is that I was forcing my body to reach out for those accumulated calories. Getting it to spend those ketones in place of glucose.
I did it in order to compare it to just eating less. In short - you gain back the weight lost that way really fast.
You do feel "un-bloated" though... Empty bowels and all that.

But regardless of it... It's not about those 100 calories spent. It's only ONCE a week. Who cares about what they eat ONCE A WEEK.
It's about raising the BMR by spending those calories ON EXERCISE.
You gotta do a LOT of exercise to spend those 100 calories. Keep doing it week after week, and you got muscles which you didn't have couple of weeks ago.
You slowly start burning more even just resting. That's it.
IF you pay attention how much you eat and don't just stuff yourself, that is.

Again... anecdotal, but I've knocked down my weight from 84-85 kilograms in December to 75 in June by limiting calories and exercising.
Since then, I'm exercising less (maybe once or twice a week) and eating on average around 2000 calories (more than before), and I'm slowly moving toward 73-74 kilograms, at the moment being closer to 74-75 mark.
Being in my mid-30s it's almost EXACTLY what you would expect from the formula.

Slow, continuous loss of fat through limiting of calories and through light exercise.
It can be done faster, but then you end up buying pants more often.
Yet another issue that rats never have to face.

about two weeks ago
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Science Has a Sexual Assault Problem

denzacar Re:Repeat? (460 comments)

And it was placed on the front page by the same editor, Soulskill.
http://science.slashdot.org/st...

Considering how long ago 1998 was, I think that it's time to start taking in account things like possible early onset senility of the editors.

about two weeks ago
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Study Finds Link Between Artificial Sweeteners and Glucose Intolerance

denzacar That's... optimistic. (294 comments)

in 2000 years or so

At 25 years per generation that's only 80 generations or so.
In comparison, rats reach sexual maturity after 5 weeks, gestate for 21 days, and have about 5 litters with 7-14 baby rats per litter.

That's about 6 generations of rats per year. Conservatively.
We will "evolve" in 2000 years about as much as rats "evolve" every 13-14 years.
Not squeaking much.

On the other hand, it is also optimistic considering how pessimistic people tend to be regarding our survival on this planet at all.
Which IMHO has become a ridiculous notion for quite some time now.
There's too many of us at too many places at the same time for most things to wipe us out as a species.
Many things could fuck us up significantly... say a nuclear war... but we are too dispersed to be completely wiped out by anything that would not wipe out all life on Earth almost instantly.

But people love their antiquated 19th century ideas... After all that's only about 5 generations ago.
My parents' grandparents' time. Well... except on my mom's side.
She had a grandmother who lived to be 102.
Not much room for evolution there. Of genes OR ideas.

But in 2000 years... we'll get some shit done on the ideas front. That we've shown that we are capable of.
Unlike rats.

about two weeks ago

Submissions

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TASER France building a Flying Saucer Taser

denzacar denzacar writes  |  more than 6 years ago

denzacar (181829) writes "Antoine di Zazzo, Managing Director of TASER — France told AFP that TASER France is "developing a mini-flying saucer like drone which could also fire Taser stun rounds on criminal suspects or rioting crowds."

He expects it to be launched next year and to be sold internationally by Taser.

So far, there is no mentioning of drones being invisible to the naked eye or not."

Link to Original Source

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