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Comments

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It's Time To Plug the Loopholes In Pipeline Regulation

meustrus Re:No problem! (163 comments)

I suppose you'd rather we read about it on Conservapedia. Well I tried to read about a few things there once. After only a couple hours of reading I had long passed the "don't trust Wikipedia, this is what *really* happened" stuff and had wandered strangely into a "nerds suck, jocks rule, god hates fags" shithole. Which is what happens when a web site based on countering perceived "bias" operates for years without any of the kind of (admittedly draconian at times) quality controls Wikipedia has in place.

about a week ago
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Book Review: Money: The Unauthorized Biography

meustrus Re:What a bunch of hooye, total garbage (91 comments)

You say that governments print money and control the money because government wants more of it. In America, my friend, the government is the people. In the words of the great Republican Abraham Lincoln, "government of the people, by the people, for the people". Our government is not an entity of its own, clawing away for every advantage. Our government is a body of leaders representing all people living within our nation: a Republic.

Therefore when one thinks of the ways that our government takes away our wealth, takes away our freedoms, takes away our dignity, we must not think of it as a great leviathan, secure in itself by virtue of its ability to lay waste to the lesser people. It is not some abstract deity that takes from us. It is ourselves. It is the political circus we have all become part of. And whether or not all the elephants recognize them, every circus has ringleaders.

Who benefits from all this taking? Who benefits from the government printing money while still taxing it from the people who earned it? Who really holds the power that is being sucked into Congress? You're right about one thing: it's not us. But I guarantee you that if the government itself reaped the benefits, we would not have a deficit in the trillions.

about two weeks ago
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Book Review: Money: The Unauthorized Biography

meustrus Re:What a bunch of hooye, total garbage (91 comments)

*sigh* no mod points today. I may disagree with the basis of roman_mir's assertions, but I don't think the post should be voted down. It's not nasty; the closest thing to vitriol is calling the book a "piece of shit" (which reads more like a thesis statement than an ad hominem). I know that a lot of fucking crazy Republicans (or more likely trolls masquerading as such) have been posting some pretty steamy piles of shit around here lately, but this post definitely is not one of them.

about two weeks ago
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Homeopathic Remedies Recalled For Containing Real Medicine

meustrus Re:It's time to fix this (173 comments)

By 'prescription', I mean approval by a homeopath. Obviously there is no licensing set up to ensure such people to be legitimate. I considered suggesting to set one up, but since homeopathy is not a science it's not really possible to do so practically.

What I would like to see is for homeopathic remedies to require the statement "these claims have not been approved by the FDA" and prevent them from using "Drug Facts" labels that make them look legitimate. This would not affect "real" homeopathy as far as I can tell; practitioners ought to be trusting the person concocting their prescription, not the drug companies. It would only affect the shams. And it shouldn't preclude the FDA from following the manufacturing processes either.

about three weeks ago
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Homeopathic Remedies Recalled For Containing Real Medicine

meustrus It's time to fix this (173 comments)

It's about damn time something was done to fix this homeopathic mess. Read the Wikipedia article on Homeopathy for a moment. The thing that struck me about it is not the "diluting makes it stronger" part. Everybody knows that. What struck me is that "homeopathic remedies" are basically always prescription-only.

Why do we allow non-prescription drugs to bypass FDA inspection because they are labelled "homeopathic"? I mean, truly homeopathic drugs should not be any cause for concern, but then they should also only be taken by prescription. What we have instead is a menagerie of sham drugs claiming to be "homeopathic" to avoid drug testing. Nothing 1x or 2x diluted should ever seriously be sold as "homeopathic".

It's about damn time to get rid of the special treatment altogether. Slapping a "homeopathic" label on a drug must not be enough to excuse it from proper testing. I could understand it it was diluted 10x, but then that only applies to the "active ingredient". What we have here is a drug with an "inactive ingredient" that happens to be penicillin (whether it was intentionally added or not - and excuse me, but what part of diluting a homeopathic drug involves "fermentation"?).

Alternative medicine is one thing, but it's something else if the producers themselves mix the product with real medicine because they think it is actually snake oil.

about three weeks ago
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Oppo's New Phone Hits 538 PPI

meustrus Re:Stupid (217 comments)

I know you were talking about equal pixel density, but I don't think AC was:

Yet I would kill to have those kind of resolutions on my 12" laptop.

"Resolution" generally refers to the number of pixels on the whole screen, not the number of pixels per area. So the field of a 12" screen at 2560x1440 will not drop by over a factor of four over a 5" screen at 2560x1440. I get your point though that a 12" screen more like 6400x3600 to have a similar DPI would have a terrible yield.

about three weeks ago
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Oppo's New Phone Hits 538 PPI

meustrus Re:Stupid (217 comments)

God dammit when will these resolutions be available on normal-sized desktop screens? If they can pack 2560x1440 into a 5" screen for $600, why does it have to cost more than that to get any desktop monitor with that many pixels? It shouldn't have to be 27". All kinds of laptop screens are racing towards 4K-like resolutions, but you simply cannot get the same 3200x1800 resolution at any size on the desktop you can in 14" laptops. At least until you get to 4K TVs.

2560x1440 or even better, 2560x1600 is a magical resolution for a computer screen. It's the resolution where you can fit two programs side-by-side with a full 1280 pixels of horizontal space, which has been the standard available for the last 15 years. Unless something is designed for wide screens (and then hey, it will probably scale to the whole massive space of your desktop) it's like having two screens side-by-side, except with amazing vertical space, no bezel in the middle, and a cinematic capability for displaying video and games.

This screen resolution is practical on a desktop computer. If we can get it on 5" screens where it's nothing more than marketing (more than 300dpi is a waste) why can't we get it somewhere useful?

about three weeks ago
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Oppo's New Phone Hits 538 PPI

meustrus Re:Stupid (217 comments)

If you go from a 4" screen to an 8" screen, with the same number of pixels, your yield will *not* drop by a factor of four. A lower DPI screen is less likely to have defects. I'm not sure exactly how much it might drop though, or if the yield might even increase.

about three weeks ago
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Oppo's New Phone Hits 538 PPI

meustrus Re:cameras (217 comments)

And more power used by the screen. Powering the screen and its backlight are over half the battery consumption in any smartphone, and it's only more power hungry with more pixels. Even the backlight has to work harder.

about three weeks ago
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Oppo's New Phone Hits 538 PPI

meustrus Re:Battery life? (217 comments)

I should hope the scout leader doesn't need the phone to play Angry Birds during the camping trip. If it is for the sole reason stated - emergencies - then having contact with the rest of the world is a very important safety precaution. Just because it didn't exist before doesn't mean it should be foregone. Emergency communication can save your life in situations where before cell phones the rescue teams would find corpses by the time they knew to look.

about three weeks ago
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Time Dilation Drug Could Let Heinous Criminals Serve 1,000 Year Sentences

meustrus Re: Ridiculous. (914 comments)

Of course rehabilitation is not the goal. The person is talking about life sentences. The person is talking about punishment, about vengeance. It's natural for some people to seek vengeance against people who have done truly unspeakable things, but it's not constructive. What would be more constructive is to remove them from society, figure out why they did what they did, and try to keep it from happening again.

The concern I'd like to address is purely economic: is it right to spend more money just to make the criminal's life more miserable? Because then everyone paying taxes is paying the price. What if the most painful torture was liquid gold injections (and it had to be gold)? If you're already determined to use torture, would it really be worth the extra expense over, say, pulling fingernails? Developing new, inventive ways to make people suffer is the realm of six-fingered villains from The Princess Bride. This has no place in our society.

about a month ago
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Daylight Saving Time ...

meustrus Re:Are we not advanced enough to use UTC Time? (310 comments)

You don't need to always use UTC to get the benefits you describe. Just always give times in UTC when communicating across time zones. The only disadvantage is that the receiver might not know how to convert from UTC to local time. This is basically the same problem as converting people to UTC, however. At least this way the receivers know they need to look up the conversion, rather than thinking they know but getting it wrong due to DST or whatever.

In every situation where the time zone is not obvious, it should be included in every statement of time. Obvious would be communicating with someone in the same time zone where we both will be in the same time zone at that time. Non-obvious would be communicating with unknown parties that might be elsewhere, especially over the internet, but even a physical bulletin board would count if it was near a time zone boundary.

about a month ago
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Neil Young's "Righteous" Pono Music Startup Raises $1 Million With Kickstarter

meustrus Re:Wow, So Douchey (413 comments)

You're certainly right about the AAC/256 part (at least if it's properly encoded). But there are a lot of other things mentioned that cause the sound "at the mixing board" to be superior. In fact, most of them are the mixing itself. Perhaps in the quest to make "the best mix we can to translate to whatever sorrowful playback medium of the average customer" you have actually mixed a brick wall soulless mockery of what you were listening to.

But I understand there's no going back now. It's probably for the best if recording studios start releasing lossless 24/192 audiophile versions, because they might actually be better mixes. I'd buy that for the mix and immediately down-sample to 16/44 so I can have 4.5x as much music.

about a month ago
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Neil Young's "Righteous" Pono Music Startup Raises $1 Million With Kickstarter

meustrus Re:Reality check (413 comments)

Read that, or at least accept for a moment that 24/192 is pointless and that a well-encoded MP3 is audibly indistinguishable from a lossless recording in double blind tests.

The whole "confirmation bias" thing is actually terrible for music. It's what makes audiophiles. Somebody tells you music is better with X audiophile feature, and plays it for you. It sounds better. Probably because it's your friend, or the equipment is obviously really nice, or you're used to listening to 128kbps muzak on your earbuds. Once you start believing, there's no limit to the set-ups that can be ruined by not having X feature. Can you ever listen to music again without a $20,000 system?

Audiophilia is like Scientology. The more you believe in it, the more money you have to spend just to be happy again. Demand scientific proof.

about a month ago
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Neil Young's "Righteous" Pono Music Startup Raises $1 Million With Kickstarter

meustrus Re:Reality check (413 comments)

A vinyl rip. That's just great. Why not just download a 320kbps MP3 and resample it to 256kbps? Then resample it again a few times? Maybe convert it to FLAC at the end so it's "lossless"? Not to belittle the gain you get from a superior mix. It's just that you shouldn't have to do that.

about a month ago
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Neil Young's "Righteous" Pono Music Startup Raises $1 Million With Kickstarter

meustrus Re:Really silly (413 comments)

But what if you want to use your 128gb music player as your actual portable music library? Something that you can hook up to a much larger and more expensive system in an otherwise quiet environment?

about a month ago
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Author Says It's Time To Stop Glorifying Hackers

meustrus Re: Victim blaming (479 comments)

I think my fix highlights several things about computer security. One, the consequences are financial loss at the worst, not bodily harm. Two, you can be easily victimized for common behaviors. Three, installing anti-virus (bars over your windows) will not do anything to save you from bad password security (key under the welcome mat), no matter what the "helpful" bloatware on your new PC tells you.

about a month ago
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How Do You Backup 20TB of Data?

meustrus Re:2nd Array or Tape (983 comments)

You know it probably costs more than building another 20TB RAID when the web site says "Contact Sales Assistance on +1-888-672-2534 to quote or purchase this product".

about a month ago
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Author Says It's Time To Stop Glorifying Hackers

meustrus Re:Dear "writer".... (479 comments)

Let me guess, the writer was uneducated and using a very outdated term? Because the only people calling cyber criminals "hackers" are the under educated media and luddites that have not been paying attention to what has been happening in the world.

So what you're saying is that the author was writing to the 95% of normal people rather than to the 5% of people who have "been paying attention to what has been happening in the [technology] world". If everyone would rather read Slashdot than the sports section, there would be no sports section.

about a month 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  |  more than 4 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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