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Comments

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I think next winter will be:

meustrus Missing Option (132 comments)

I haven't got a f***ing clue. Ever since I moved out of southern California (where "Winter" means "hey, it's only 80 degrees in the early afternoon now, and it actually rains sometimes") I've seen a supposedly brutally cold winter, a milder but really, really snowy winter, and a winter that wasn't really. Last year felt warmer than usual except for the couple of "polar vortex" weeks, which reminded me of the brutal winter. With all that as my baseline, I really don't know what a "normal winter" even looks like.

6 hours ago
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I think next winter will be:

meustrus Re:MISSING OPTION (132 comments)

Hm...around here, more things get blamed on left wing extremists. Especially having to do with the weather. So I'm not sure if you're serious, contrary, or a troll. Or are you an ironic troll? Or a serious contrarian? Or a truthful comedian? WHO ARE YOU UNDERQUALIFIED!??

6 hours ago
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Ask Slashdot: What To Do After Digitizing VHS Tapes?

meustrus Re:Offsite. (263 comments)

Yeah! Throw out all those old Star Wars tapes and just buy the latest "digitally remastered" versions! It'll be just like you remembered!

yesterday
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AT&T Proposes Net Neutrality Compromise

meustrus Cue evil (233 comments)

Cue Comcast (or its representatives, either by training or of their own hair-brained ideas) deciding that some kinds of traffic are not legitimate and refusing to stop downgrading them. Because if you're using X kind of web traffic, it must be for Y common illegal use of that traffic and not just because it's the best technology for what you're doing. According to most ISPs, there are no legal uses of peer-to-peer or fully anonymized web traffic. How nice the days must have been when those were the only kinds of traffic that really taxed their bandwidth, and they could get away with throttling them as some kind of internet vigilantes.

yesterday
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Navy Guilty of Illegally Broad Online Searches: Child Porn Conviction Overturned

meustrus Re:I Don't Understand... (285 comments)

Like most legal decisions in the news, the reasons behind it are not immediately comprehensible. For one thing, the evidence itself is that the perpetrator was found to be publicly sharing a known child pornography file. People don't always understand that the Gnutella network (Limewire and others) advertises your shared files to everyone, including the cops if only they decide to take a look (and they can because it's a public space). So the evidence should be admissible. But it isn't, because this isn't ordinary law enforcement. As others with more legal knowledge than myself have pointed out, the exclusion of this evidence is based on the fact that NCIS, as a military law enforcement agency, is bound by law (Posse Comitatus Act) to restrict all of its searches to military personnel only. Because the search indiscriminately included civilians, it ran afoul of the law. Basically. Laws aren't always absolute, so there is still reason to believe this judgment was wrong. But again, like most legal decisions in the news, the reasons behind it are not immediately comprehensible.

2 days ago
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Should police have cameras recording their work at all times?

meustrus Re:"Accidentally" (455 comments)

I thought JosKarith was being ironic. Since, you know, it's usually the law-and-order types that use the "nothing to hide" argument. What does it tell us that the same people who make that claim of ordinary citizens are afraid of their own actions being recorded?

about three weeks ago
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Limiting the Teaching of the Scientific Process In Ohio

meustrus Re:Not as inexplicable as it might seem at first (528 comments)

In my experience it isn't the government mandates that are the problem. It's the administrators. There has been a lot of talk in the last twenty years about holding teachers accountable for test scores. But where's the accountability for administrators? Can a principal be fired is his school has consistently underperformed for the entirety of his time on the job? There has been a lot of talk about unions and tenure preventing bad teachers from being fired. But who does the firing? If a principal fails to fire a bad teacher for several years, it's not because the teacher is tenured. Tenure may make firing take longer, and ensure that it only happens for good reasons, but it doesn't just protect everyone forever. If a bad teacher has been at a school for many years, it's because the administrators like him. They have probably even cultivated the bad teaching practices.

The primary task of any school principal is to keep order and maintain the status quo. Order is good! But it has to be balanced with the needs and desires of students, who are best represented by their teachers. Even a bad teacher will know better than the principal what is best for his students.

It should be clear that the one group of people who have the most incentive to help students are teachers. So why is education reform so focused on taking power away from teachers? Busting unions? Handing more power to the least competent people in the chain with the least education training (school administrators)?

about three weeks ago
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Limiting the Teaching of the Scientific Process In Ohio

meustrus Re:Now ICP can finally achieve their teaching drea (528 comments)

I agree with you. I do! But even if it's just to be pithy, calling science "correct", or as happens more frequently, claiming to "believe" science or scientific theories, suggests to the ignorant that science is equivalent to faith. If it were just a matter of what to believe, science and Christian literalism would be equally valid. But that's not the point. And since the ignorant are everywhere, we must always be more careful talking about science.

about three weeks ago
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Limiting the Teaching of the Scientific Process In Ohio

meustrus Re:The US slides back to the caves (528 comments)

The Vatican, while obviously not representing all religions, but being a major one, uses the metric system, so I'm pretty sure that imperial vs metric has nothing to do with religion.

On the contrary! Imperial vs metric has everything to do with religion. Specifically, the Metric religion and the Leave Me Alone I Don't Care If I'm Wrong religion.

about three weeks ago
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Limiting the Teaching of the Scientific Process In Ohio

meustrus Re:The US slides back to the caves (528 comments)

Personally, I'm not sure whether you mean he's using base 10 notation or base 10 notation.

about three weeks ago
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Limiting the Teaching of the Scientific Process In Ohio

meustrus Re:The US slides back to the caves (528 comments)

I think he's saying that by "Imperial", he meant "Not Metric".

about three weeks ago
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Limiting the Teaching of the Scientific Process In Ohio

meustrus Re:just because the dept of ed.... (528 comments)

Unless he started smoking in kindergarten, I doubt he "never" tried very hard. Probably just gradually realized that besides a few basic rote skills, school mainly teaches us to hate learning and not think critically. So he gave in early. Less friction and more fun that way, I suppose.

about three weeks ago
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Limiting the Teaching of the Scientific Process In Ohio

meustrus Re:Accepted the challenge, nice. One more interest (528 comments)

You're definitely right that science is not the opposite of religion. There are too many atheists who don't understand that. But there are also far too many Christians who don't understand it either. Otherwise they wouldn't be getting all offended by evolution. I really don't understand why it's so important to some people that the first few chapters of Genesis literally happened. Does it matter? I thought it was just supposed to be parables about human nature.

Also, Proverbs may be part of the Abrahamic tradition, but you're ignoring eastern faith completely. There is no Book of Proverbs in Buddhism or Hinduism. I know that "most of" lets you weasel an implication that "most" people believe in God, but the world is more diverse than that.

about three weeks ago
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Limiting the Teaching of the Scientific Process In Ohio

meustrus Re:Secondary objective (528 comments)

Because more than anything else, powerful weasels like this like having lots of loopholes in the law. That way, the only winners are those with good lawyers. And good lawyers belong to the rich and powerful.

about three weeks ago
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Limiting the Teaching of the Scientific Process In Ohio

meustrus Re:Belief systems (528 comments)

Interesting question. The atheists fighting the culture war are probably a lot to blame (haven't they ever heard of "don't feed the trolls"?). But I'd be very interested in an article on the history of scientific "fact" and "belief" as opposed to "theory" and "methodology".

about three weeks ago
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Limiting the Teaching of the Scientific Process In Ohio

meustrus Re:Not as inexplicable as it might seem at first (528 comments)

I personally agree with Gatto, but I'd like to suggest a minor revision to what you are saying. The original purpose of the education system was to extend childhood and discourage critical thinking. Those were explicit goals a hundred years ago, but nobody talks like that anymore. And if you ask any individual teacher or administrator, you'll certainly not find those reasons underlying their motivation.

Yes, our educational system still does these things, but not intentionally anymore. It's just because of inertia: every teacher now grew up in this same system, internally justified every aspect of it as necessary to some noble cause, and now focuses on issues other than whether students should be separated by age/grade or how to cultivate a particular social atmosphere for their students.

Actually, a lot of that inertia probably comes from our current teachers and administrators...lacking critical thinking skills. How unfortunate.

about three weeks ago
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Limiting the Teaching of the Scientific Process In Ohio

meustrus Re:Now ICP can finally achieve their teaching drea (528 comments)

FTFY. There are plenty of non-fundie mainstream religious people, Abrahamic and otherwise, that recognize the scientific method is meaningful.

FTFY. We can be pretty sloppy with language. It is English after all. So I just wanted to make your point clear and remove the sloppy things that make it easier to *ahem* crucify your argument.

(Science is not something that is "correct" or "incorrect"; it's a meaningful way of observing the world, reducing human bias of those observations, and making meaningful predictions. Focusing on the results as "correct" falls into the trap this law would inflict on our students: without the scientific method, evolution is just another idea with as much evidence, or maybe even less, than the Christian creation myth. As for "religious people", I just don't think that any organizations, not being people, could hold religious beliefs ;) )

about three weeks ago
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Limiting the Teaching of the Scientific Process In Ohio

meustrus Re:Facts, not Al Gore's theory of the process (528 comments)

FYI, the whole CFC thing was about ozone depletion, and is not the largest contributor to climate change (and it has nothing to do with butterflies). If was just especially bad because in addition to making the Earth absorb more heat from the Sun, it would also make our skin absorb more cancer-causing UV light. So yeah, I'm glad that shit isn't in our hairspray anymore.

about three weeks ago
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Limiting the Teaching of the Scientific Process In Ohio

meustrus Re:Is it going anywhere? (528 comments)

it's just clickbait

Interesting. When you call this "clickbait", do you only mean that this article is likely to be clicked on by many, many people? Or are you implying that more people will click on it than are actually engaged with the ideas? Because there a big difference between "10 ways Bitcoin will change the world" and "New proposed law could change education as we know it". Even if "proposed law" never gets passed, doesn't it deserve to be laid bare by public discussion anyway?

about three weeks ago

Submissions

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Ars Says Ad Blockers Killing the Internet

meustrus meustrus writes  |  more than 4 years ago

meustrus (1588597) writes "Ars Technica reports that ad blocking is devastating to the sites you love in a 'hopefully informative' post following an experiment on Friday afternoon where they blocked access to the news site from those using ad blockers. 'There is an oft-stated misconception that if a user never clicks on ads, then blocking them won't hurt a site financially. This is wrong. Most sites, at least sites the size of ours, are paid on a per view basis.'

While advertisements may be necessary for revenue, and some sites are better about them than others, most of us install ad blocking software for those websites out there with the obnoxious screen-covering or sound-blasting advertisements. More often than the annoying ads, though, is that when a page stops loading you can look down at the status bar to see 'Waiting for doubleclick.net...'"

Link to Original Source
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What Intel's New Integrated GPU Means

meustrus meustrus writes  |  more than 4 years ago

meustrus (1588597) writes "So Intel has released new Arrandale and Clarkdale processors with integrated GPU's. For some reason, it seems like I'm the only one who's worried about this. Early last month, Bright Side of News posted a rumor that Apple would skip this generation of Intel processors, demanding a version without built-in GPU. Why would they do this? For the last couple of years, Apple has had a good thing going with nVidia chipsets in their laptops, using GeForce 9400M integrated graphics which perform vastly superior to Intel graphics. Even with the recent developments concerning nVidia chipsets, it is still a sad day that such an arrangement becomes more and more of a faded reality.

What Intel proves to me with the integrated GPU is that it intends to pour salt in nVidia's wounds and push its graphics chips on PC designers and consumers. In my opinion this is monopolistic behavior, like trying to kill Netscape by shipping Windows with Internet Explorer. In a review of the new processors, there is a description and picture of the die for the new CPU's. Most notable is that it combines a 32nm CPU with a 45nm GPU. This is not some engineer's dream of perfection. It's a hack job pushed by management as a strategic move to put an Intel graphics chip in every computer in the world, with the eventual goal of weakening competition for third-party GPU's and chipsets which use them."
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Windows 7 Released to MSDNAA

meustrus meustrus writes  |  about 5 years ago

meustrus writes "Windows 7 Professional has been made available through Microsoft Developer Network Academic Alliance (MSDNAA). 32-bit and 64-bit versions are available. Also available is Windows 7 Ultimate RC and language packs. Being a university student, I have proceeded to install the 64-bit edition on my Macbook Pro 5,1 and let me tell you, it purrs."

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