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Are the World's Religions Ready For ET?

devent Re:Space Trilogy (420 comments)

Why are people taking C.S. Lewis so seriosly? I was reading quotes and texts from Lewis and it's full of holes and jumping to conclusions that only show his presupposed world view. I view C.S. Lewis as just another Christian apologetic, more like Willeam Lane Craig.

3 hours ago
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How Our Botched Understanding of "Science" Ruins Everything

devent religion concerns the ultimate causes of things (794 comments)

In religion, the ultimate cause of things is always god or gods. The conclusion is already set in stone, and theists are trying to find ways to validate the conclusion.
"by definition, science cannot tell you about them", yes it can, and does. The ultimate cause of things are interactions of matter with the four forces of nature, gravitation, electromagnetism, weak and strong force. I'm sorry if that answer is not satisfying to some, because it does not make you a special created purposeful snowflake. Or, in the words of Fight Club, "You are not a beautiful and unique snowflake. You are the same decaying organic matter as everyone else, and we are all a part of the same compost pile.—Tyler Durden"

What is the cause of matter and those four forces of nature? We don't know yet, but that does not mean we will never know. But we have the best method to discover it, and that best method is so far the scientific method. The scientific method is observation, testing and creating of models with explanatory and predictive powers.

"philistines like Richard Dawkins and Jerry Coyne thinking science has made God irrelevant" - way to go with ad-hominim attacks.
God is an idea to explain natural penomena, because God is postulated by religion as the ultimate cause of things. Science explains things better and more accurate, and hence it does make God obsolete.

"You might think of science advocate, cultural illiterate, mendacious anti-Catholic propagandist, and possible serial fabulist Neil DeGrasse Tyson" - more with the ad-hominim attacks.
"Actually, he doesn't just dismiss it. He goes much further — to argue that undergraduates should actively avoid studying philosophy at all. Because, apparently, asking too many questions "can really mess you up.""

That makes Tyson a pragmatist and not a philistine. And I agree with Tyson. Philosophie is ultimatelly useless, and it's just a waste of time. In science the ultimate arbiter of what is true and what is false is nature, and not philosophical arguments.

about two weeks ago
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What To Expect With Windows 9

devent Re:The Year of Windows on the Desktop (545 comments)

The only trouble I had was with Debian Sid, because of the rolling-release updates. The updates were broken some of the time. But the system was still running fine, it just meant that I had to wait a few weeks so that the updates were fixed.
Compare that with Windows updates, and the news that update X broke the system.

http://www.howtogeek.com/17962...
http://threatpost.com/microsof...
http://www.sevenforums.com/win...

about two weeks ago
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What To Expect With Windows 9

devent Re:The Year of Windows on the Desktop (545 comments)

I used Linux now for over 6 years. Ubuntu, Debian, Suse. On at least 6 different laptops. Just install it, finish, and it works.
Sure, sometimes you have problems with drivers because the hardware vendor does not support Linux. But that have nothing to do with Linux itself.

about two weeks ago
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What To Expect With Windows 9

devent Re:The Year of Windows on the Desktop (545 comments)

I don't think you "get Linux". Linux you just install once and then it runs and runs, regardless of any updates. Case in example, I installed Fedora 19 for my mother. After a few months I make an update, that was over 300 packages. Download in the background, updates in 20 minutes, restart, finish. No problems. New Fedora 20 comes out, I just make a distribution update. That was over 1000 packages. Download in the background, updates in 40 to 60 minutes, restart, finish. No problems. And Fedora 20 is a so called "bleeding-edge" distribution. If you use Ubuntu LTS or Debian Stable you have even less of a hastle.

I used Linux now for over 6 years. Ubuntu, Debian, Suse, Fedora. And I never "tinker around and do all kinds of clever things with it to hone it to be the ultimate OS for me". Just install it, finish, and it works.

about two weeks ago
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What To Expect With Windows 9

devent Does anybody care? (545 comments)

What I want for Windows:
- the possibility to delete files even if they are in use
- Unix tools available (find, grep, ssh, rsync, gpg, git) out of the box
- support for Linux file systems (ext2, ext3, ext4, brtfs)
- support for Lvm and dm-raid and cryp LUKS
- sshfs to mount file systems over ssh
- get rid of device letters
- CUPS
- virtual desktops
- software updates that do not take 2 hours and require x restarts
- repository for hardware drivers, so I don't have to hunt down drivers from vendors
- a terminal emulator that does not was ported from 1991 DOS
- dialogs that can be resized, all the time
- boot manager that supports alternative systems (GRUP can start Windows and Linux, and have auto-setup)
- possibility to re-assign keyboard keys without registry hacks
- get rid of the registry
- possibility to just copy Windows to a different computer
- recognition of my second hard disk in Windows Install (seriously, I cannot install Windows 7 to my second hard disk)
- get rid of the System-Partition

about two weeks ago
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Massive Study Searching For Genes Behind Intelligence Finds Little

devent Re:Article is totally misleading (269 comments)

That is no reason to misrepresent the cited paper. The correct presentation should be "Paper found three alleles and four genes that are linked to cognetive abilities". The rest about the IQ and which factors contribute to intelligence is not the subject of the study in the paper.

about three weeks ago
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Massive Study Searching For Genes Behind Intelligence Finds Little

devent Article is totally misleading (269 comments)

From the original paper:
http://www.pnas.org/content/ea...

We identify several common genetic variants associated with cognitive performance using a two-stage approach: we conduct a genome-wide association study of educational attainment to generate a set of candidates, and then we estimate the association of these variants with cognitive performance. In older Americans, we find that these variants are jointly associated with cognitive health. Bioinformatics analyses implicate a set of genes that is associated with a particular neurotransmitter pathway involved in synaptic plasticity, the main cellular mechanism for learning and memory. In addition to the substantive contribution, this work also serves to show a proxy-phenotype approach to discovering common genetic variants that is likely to be useful for many phenotypes of interest to social scientists (such as personality traits).

How the hell does the article now writes that "The scientists first looked for differences in the genome that correlated with academic achievement"? No, they looked for "educational attainment". Then the abstract goes on "Three SNPs (rs1487441, rs7923609, and rs2721173) are significantly associated with cognitive performance after correction for multiple hypothesis testing." SNPs are different alleles of the same gene.

Then, "Convergent evidence from a set of bioinformatics analyses implicates four specific genes (KNCMA1, NRXN1, POU2F3, and SCRT). All of these genes are associated with a particular neurotransmitter pathway involved in synaptic plasticity, the main cellular mechanism for learning and memory." But the article states that " On top of that, the three gene locations that did seem to have a stronger correlation weren't involved in development of the nervous system."

What the hell??

about three weeks ago
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You Got Your Windows In My Linux

devent Re:Lennart Poetterings rebuttal (613 comments)

Oh, Lennart own Gnome now?
That is exactly the type of comments I read from critiques of systemd.

about a month ago
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You Got Your Windows In My Linux

devent Re:Lennart Poetterings rebuttal (613 comments)

Oh please cry me a river. Impose systemd on others? Did Lennart own Ubuntu, Debian, RedHat and Suse now? It was deceided by the developers of those distributions to replace the old sysv init with systemd, and the alternatives were concidered. In Debian it was a democratic process by voting. RedHat is a company so clearly they will not bet on a broken system. Almost all of the arguments against systemd are not valid on technical grounds, and now you want to muddy the waters by attacking Lennart directly.

Systemd sypports text files just fine, you do the straw man here. Fedora have systemd since F18 (I think), today I'm using F20, and I still have all my log text files in the same location. Debian *voted* on the issue and decided that the alternatives (upstart, etc.) are not good enough technically compared to systemd, and sysv init was obolete. If you are thinking that Debian is now owned by Lennart, you really need to get your tin hat.

Systemd is not a mess. Many of the points are just false. Like your straw man with binary log files.

about a month ago
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Free Copy of the Sims 2 Contains SecuROM

devent Re:Who cares? (234 comments)

NO!

The game designer have no right to take away my rights, and adding DRM is taking away my right of re-sale, fair-use and entering into public domain. Copyright is a compromise, we allow you to have a monopole on your software for a certain period of time so you can reclaim money lost on creating the software, inciting you to create software. But always under the premise that we have certain rights on the bought product. If you remove unilaterally my rights, why should I give you any rights back?

about 2 months ago
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Smoking Mothers May Alter the DNA of Their Children

devent Re:ANY stress "alters the DNA" of a fetus. (155 comments)

Great, and if you could provide the peer-reviewed articles of the studies then you would deserve the +5 Informative.

about 2 months ago
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Consciousness On-Off Switch Discovered Deep In Brain

devent Re:Interesting, but N=1 and... (284 comments)

Why do you think the link is broken?
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pu... works fine by me, here is the Abstract:

[...]Stimulation of the claustral electrode reproducibly resulted in a complete arrest of volitional behavior, unresponsiveness, and amnesia without negative motor symptoms or mere aphasia. The disruption of consciousness did not outlast the stimulation and occurred without any epileptiform discharges.[...]

about 3 months ago
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Famo.us: Do We Really Need Another JavaScript Framework?

devent Re:Do we need HTML+Javascript at all? (104 comments)

- Superior Advertisement
- Superior punishing of unnecessary updates
- Superior tracking of users
- Superior copy protection

And those are the only points a company is interested in.

about 3 months ago
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Belief In Evolution Doesn't Measure Science Literacy

devent Re:Maybe it doesn't measure science literacy (772 comments)

You proved my point, "Spirituality is the process of adding "Truth" (aka just ideas or claims), without any predictive power or support from observations".

Spirituality is based upon gnosticism. That is, knowledge by direct experience.

Knowledge is justified true believes. They are justified if you can support them with evidence, and they are true if they correspond to reality. There are different kind of evidence, it can be personal experience, logical arguments, empirical experiments, etc. Personal experiences is the lowest form of evidence, because it is by nature subjective.

There are no proofs for experiences i.e. Prove that you love your spouse.

Bad example, I can actually prove that I love my spouse by the neurons fire in my brain and the endorphins (hormones) in my blood. But you are correct, that there are no objective methods to prove personal experiences, that is why personal experiences is the weakest form of evidence. Many people have personal experiences to be abducted by aliens, or personal experiences with Big Foot, or saw Elvis after his death, or "born again" Christians, and so on.

I would recommend starting with the beginning of ALL Wisdom: Know Thyself.

I agree. And the scientific method gave us this knowledge, more detailed and more supported by evidence then any method before. And the answer is: we are physical beings in a physical universe.

Church Father Clement of Alexandria said it best: " ... the greatest of all lessons to know one's self. For if one knows himself, he will know God; and knowing God, he will be made like God ... and that man becomes God, since God so wills ... "

Nonsensical nonsense.

You are a spiritual being in a physical body having a human experience.
You are significantly much, much more then your body. The real interesting question is "How much more?"
Some use meditation, others lucid dreaming, some music, others religion, etc. Use whatever works.
Condemning another man's path simply because it doesn't work for you is the height ignorance, arrogance, and stupidity.
Theism is only 1 of the 4 paths.

And every path led to nothing at all. Sure, people can induce hallucinations and dreams through very different methods, drugs (Native American), oxygen deprivation, dancing, and so on, but this all just proves the point that we are physical beings in a physical universe. You can chemically alter your brain and get neurons fire and get visions or dreams. So what? Nobody got a Nobel Price with that method, or got anything else from it.

You are a spiritual being in a physical body having a human experience.

Please prove that first. Otherwise it's just a religion.

about 4 months ago
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Belief In Evolution Doesn't Measure Science Literacy

devent Re:Maybe it doesn't measure science literacy (772 comments)

That is why both religion and spirituality are BS. Please demonstrate first that there is a god.

* Science is the process of removing falsehood and adding predictive models of nature, based on direct and indirect observations.
* Spirituality is the process of adding "Truth" (aka just ideas or claims), without any predictive power or support from observations
* Religion is one ritualistic process claiming to be the only way to "Truth" (aka just ideas or claims), without any predictive power or support from observations

about 4 months ago
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Torrentz.eu Domain Name Suspended

devent Re:City of London Police paid by (226 comments)

Yes, I was reading about that. Does the Police have any jurisdiction outside of the old City of London? If not, Torrentz can sue them for damages.

about 4 months ago
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Torrentz.eu Domain Name Suspended

devent City of London Police paid by (226 comments)

Is the City of London Police paid now by ProMusic, Music Matters, FindAnyFilm, TheContentMap, and by BPI, ifpi, and Publisher Association?
I always think the first country to have a private police force would be the USA and not the UK, but here you have it.

about 4 months ago
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Free Software Foundation Condemns Mozilla's Move To Support DRM In Firefox

devent Re:Corporate directed not volunteer direct ... (403 comments)

We have clearly a different opinion of what rights are. If I have a right to make a copy and I have a perfectly working computer to exercise my right and then because I bought a DVD or Blu-Ray that feature is removed, the manufacture of those DVD/Blu-Ray clearly violates my rights. It doesn't matter if I agreed for that, I right stays a right. That is the same principle of why slavery is illegal, even if you sign a contract that makes you a slave.

That is also the reason why all contracts have a clause that if some passages of the contract is in contradiction of the current law, that passage becomes void. So, even if I agreed in a EULA like contract to disable my rights, my rights still are valid. For example, the first sale right is still valid even if you agreed to a EULA that disallows resale.[1,2]

[1] http://toc.oreilly.com/2013/03...
[2] http://www.dw.de/oracle-loses-...

about 4 months ago
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Free Software Foundation Condemns Mozilla's Move To Support DRM In Firefox

devent Re:Corporate directed not volunteer direct ... (403 comments)

I don't have to argue the need to exercise my rights.

I'm no a lawyer, but I think that fair-use rights still hold up even for streaming and renting. If not, that is why I donate to the FSF to push legislation to extend my rights to paid content.

That's a slippery slope that would have people arguing that they are only recording the movie in the theater on their cell phone so that they can review it using a few short clips.

Yes, why not?

about 4 months ago

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