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US/UK Will Stage 'Cyber-Attack War Games' As Pressure Against Encryption Mounts

jeffasselin Re:Um... (77 comments)

Euh locks on doors don't stop burglars. They stop kids from doing petty vandalism. Burglars can easily pick your door locks, or will simply break a window to enter.

Door locks are the equivalent of FTP server banner messages telling people "access is restricted to those authorized".

What prevents burglaries in civilized countries is the social contract, and the fact that most people have a common moral and ethical sense that tells them it's wrong. The idea that you're better off working for a decent salary and that you should respect the property of others so they'll respect you is a basic logic that holds true in many places (less so nowadays in some countries where the working poor are worse every day).

The reason it doesn't work on the Internet is because this contract falls apart because of distance and the anonymizing nature of the Internet. Not just the fact that bad guys can be pseudonymous, but because to them you're not a person, you're an IP address. It de-humanizes contact and makes it easier to justify bad behavior.

Add to it the fact that there may be a small portion of people in a city or neighborhood who are lacking enough in morality to do burglaries, but in the whole world there's a lot more of them. And although they can't all break into your house, they can all break into your computer...

about two weeks ago
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Programmer Father Asks: What Gets Little Girls Interested In Science?

jeffasselin Re:Yeesh (584 comments)

You are a sexist troll. The fact that you got a +5 insightful on this post is disgusting.

The truth of the matter is that there is no significant difference, physiologically, between men and women, as far as the brain is concerned; and thus no difference psychologically. Almost every so-called "male" or "female" feature is a result of brain plasticity and is imparted culturally.

The way to get a girl interested in science is exactly the same way to get boys interested in science. Do not treat a woman differently from a man and you will get the same results.

about 2 months ago
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New Analysis Pushes Back Possible Origin For Antikythera Mechanism

jeffasselin Re:look up also (62 comments)

Except for the fact that it's complete pseudo-scientific bunk, promoted by the likes of frauds like Von Daniken:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...

about 2 months ago
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For $1.5M, DeepFlight Dragon Is an "Aircraft for the Water"

jeffasselin Seriously? (76 comments)

No one with red blood in their veins buys a sports car and hands the keys to a chauffeur

This is such a ridiculous sentence, I couldn't get past it to read the rest. First of all, veinal blood is really dark, not red. But most telling is that the writer assumes people like cars, want to drive cars, and can drive cars. I don't like them, I don't drive, and I don't own one. If I was to ever buy one, I would have someone else drive me. So according to this un-enlightened individual, I don't exist.

about 5 months ago
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Court Allowed NSA To Spy On All But 4 Countries

jeffasselin Good news and bad news (242 comments)

As a Canadian, the good news is that the NSA doesn't spy on us.

The bad news is that the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) spies on us and shares everything with the NSA anyway.

about 7 months ago
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Is Time Moving Forward Or Backward? Computers Learn To Spot the Difference

jeffasselin Is entropy decreasing? (78 comments)

We can't even make machines that can figure out if entropy is increasing or decreasing in a video recording (something most humans can do unsciously). But we'll have human-equivalent AI is in our grasp within 10 years. And the singularity is coming within 20.

Sure.

about 7 months ago
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Major ISPs Threaten To Throttle Innovation and Slow Network Upgrades

jeffasselin US ISPs = mafia (286 comments)

That's a nice Internet you got there. Would be a shame if anything happened to it.

about 9 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: How To Back Up Physical Data?

jeffasselin The lottery winner problem (245 comments)

Planning for such an event is like planning for winning the lottery: it is almost certain will win the lottery, and it's almost certain it won't be you.

Likewise, such catastrophic events happen to someone sometimes, but you don't have to worry about it happening to you. Really. Stop worrying so much.

If you live in a tornado-targeted area, you should prepare for a tornado to hit your house.

If you live in a flood area, prepare for a flood.

It's all about statistics and the Bernoulli equation: examine the chance of something happening and the effect it could have on your life, and prepare for the events that pose a significant danger.

about 9 months ago
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Why Darmok Is a Good Star Trek: TNG Episode

jeffasselin Worst: when they use magic (512 comments)

I rewatched the whole series last year, and I got really annoyed at the episodes where magic is featured. There are quite a few, considering it's supposed to be a science-fiction show.

That's about every episode where Troi uses her magic powers, incidentally. I especially hate when she can sense an alien being's emotions at a distance of A FEW LIGHT-YEARS.

about 10 months ago
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New Facial Recognition Software May Detect Looming Road Rage

jeffasselin Reliability? (133 comments)

What is likely to be the accuracy of this system? Even a 99% accurate system would be fairly useless. Say you get 1 rager per day out of 100 000 drivers. Over 100 days (about 3 months), it will properly flag 99 people and miss one. But during the same period would flag 1000 people per day who aren't raging or dangerous.

It's the same every time someone says they can "detect" a rare event out of a completely random sample, whether it is mass screening for rare diseases or conditions, terrorists or road rage. Unless your screening method is extraordinarily accurate, the sheer number of individuals examined by the system will cause a significant number of false positives.

about 10 months ago
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Engine Data Reveals That Flight 370 Flew On For Hours After It "Disappeared"

jeffasselin Re:No alien abduction theories?! (382 comments)

It's not a real conspiracy theory if you can't bring the Knights Templar into it in some way.

about a year ago
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Bitcoin Exchange Flexcoin Wiped Out By Theft

jeffasselin Re:Unregulated currency (704 comments)

Could Bitcoin exist without the Internet?

Would the Internet exist without the Government funding research projects?

Could the Government fund research projects without tax revenue?

Ergo, Bitcoin couldn't exist without taxation.

about a year ago
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Blizzard To Sell Level 90 WoW Characters For $60

jeffasselin Re:Ohhhh boy, it's gonna be Death Knights all over (253 comments)

Well, remember that max level will soon be 100, so those people will still need to play some 10 levels. And they've announced that before queuing for heroic dungeons or LFR, you will have to earn a silver medal in the training grounds to demonstrate that you can actually do the job you are intending to fulfill.

about a year ago
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Blizzard To Sell Level 90 WoW Characters For $60

jeffasselin Re:Arg Pandas (253 comments)

It's just a shame, because Mists of Pandaria was the best expansion since Burning Crusade, in my opinion.

about a year ago
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Blizzard To Sell Level 90 WoW Characters For $60

jeffasselin Re:Arg Pandas (253 comments)

You may have missed the fact that Warcraft is filled with jokes and RL references.

about a year ago
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Blizzard To Sell Level 90 WoW Characters For $60

jeffasselin Re:Value (253 comments)

Most leveling is done solo nowadays in WoW. You will participate in dungeons with other random people, but you'll likely never see those people again in your entire life, so you don't really care. Even while leveling, most players you meet will be from other realms.

Most of the socializing happens at max level, when you play in the high-level zones, organize groups for challenge dungeons or raids, and with your guild, most of which happens at max level.

about a year ago
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Another Possible Voynich Breakthrough

jeffasselin Re:Schizophrenia (160 comments)

In fact, it would appear the two aren't independent.

There has been research showing that the same genes are present and active in both geniuses and schizophrenics. There does appear to be some relationship between the two "conditions".

about a year ago

Submissions

jeffasselin hasn't submitted any stories.

Journals

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jeffasselin jeffasselin writes  |  more than 6 years ago

I got a first post. It wasn't a troll. It even got modded up.

http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=590179&cid=23871767

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What's wrong with the moderation system?

jeffasselin jeffasselin writes  |  more than 11 years ago

I haven't received mod points in at least 1 month. I've had Excellent karma for 6 months or more, and used to receive mod points about every other day, and do some metamoderation at about the same frequency. I don't have the time to spend hours reading lots of posts, but I found I had a good balance and could usually spend my mod points on good discussions within a day or two. I've been metamoderated as "bad" no more than 2 or 3 times in that period.

Well, I first thought, maybe it's only me. But I don't so anymore. I read a few journal entries lately of people who seem to see the same pattern. But what's more, I just came in tonight and saw the "Is Bluetooth dead" story. Not really exciting, as the story sounds a bit trollish by itself, but still there were some good comments about this fact and some information that was worth spending a few mod points on. The problem? There were 131 posts at that time, after 15-20 minutes. And NONE of them was above 2 (excluding bonus points from friends). Even now there are 5 posts at 3+.

And that's just the tip of the iceberg. I look at the front page and most articles have 8 to 15 posts at 3+, some few higher but they have a lot more posts. I used to see most articles at 40-50 posts at +3 out of 300 regularly. And this seems to be a tendancy. What reasons could cause this?

1- There are less mod points given out, or not enough in proportion to the number of posts

2- The posts are mostly crap and no ones is moderating them up (reading through the +1-2 posts there are many good ones that never got any moderation, despite being posted early)

3- People are using their mod points elsewhere. Journal entries? Non-front page articles? A cursory examination of other channels doesn't show this. So it leaves journal entries. Many are interesting, but trolls don't tend to go for that audience, so there is little reason not to read everything, and if you read at 0 and mod down a troll to -1 it's going to be fine, you don't need that much mod power.

4- The stories are not very interesting and people don't bother using mod points on dull stuff.

5- I'm stupid and there's something I'm not getting here.

Although it may in part be some 3 and 4, I think it's mostly #1. I'd really like to have someone else's take on this.

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