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Comments

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Berlin Bans Car Service Uber

mvdwege Re: Uber is quite retarded (341 comments)

Since I am not even asserting what you are saying I am in your second sentence ("Europeans brag..."), I am not even going to dignify this with a rebuttal. You can fuck your strawman for all I care.

about a week ago
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Berlin Bans Car Service Uber

mvdwege Re: Uber is quite retarded (341 comments)

Hahaha, you make it sound as if "being licensed" has some implication of advanced skill.

In Germany? You bet it does.

I wish people would stop projecting American incompetence at running government services on the rest of the world.

about a week ago
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Writer: Internet Comments Belong On Personal Blogs, Not News Sites

mvdwege Re:Get it right, pls. (299 comments)

Oh yes, the Jezebel editors should just grow a thicker skin and take all the abuse they get, but God forbid they post a tongue-in-cheek reaction to a newspiece that might be construed as hurtful by the little boys, then it is suddenly 'criminal domestic abuse'.

Grow the fuck up.

about a week ago
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Writer: Internet Comments Belong On Personal Blogs, Not News Sites

mvdwege Re:Slashdot, a sanctuary of intellectual discussio (299 comments)

The problem with Slashdot is that the moderation system actually works. You mention AGW, but I've found that while there is a strong denier community here, on AGW articles they mostly end up at +5 in equal proportions to the people posting scientifically more accurate responses.[1]

Why is this a problem then? Well, it takes several hours and rounds of moderation to bring a comment section to that state. By that time, although the discussion has become readable and interesting, it hardly pays to add your viewpoint, as most people will now be paying attention to newer threads.

[1] Note to the peanut gallery: read very carefully. Nowhere in that statement do I equate 'scientifically more accurate' with being pro- or anti-AGW.

about a week ago
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Writer: Internet Comments Belong On Personal Blogs, Not News Sites

mvdwege Re:Jezebel? (299 comments)

Of course he's not kidding. There's plenty of men around who seem to think that anything beyond "Yes master, I will blow you right now" is militant feminism.

about a week ago
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Slashdot Asks: Should Schooling Be Year-Round?

mvdwege Re:A Different Approach (421 comments)

Well, obviously the cutters get traction because no-one on the government side is willing to call them on their stupid arguments; that they have right wing media moguls backing them doesn't help either.

And to get this in before one of the many idiots that plague this site tries to put words in my mouth: if after rationalising the spending it turns out that we can deliver equal or better quality services on a lower budget, by all means return the excess budget as a tax cut.

about two weeks ago
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Slashdot Asks: Should Schooling Be Year-Round?

mvdwege Re:A Different Approach (421 comments)

You want to know why the tax cutters are so strident? It is because they are so badly outnumbered by the tax squanderers.

Which is a stupid argument. If tax money is being spent unwisely, the solution is obviously not to cut taxes, the solution is to fix the spending.

Anyone who seriously tries to make this argument is obviously not interested in fixing the squandering issue at all, but merely wanting to cut his tax liability. Why can't they be honest about it?

about two weeks ago
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Microsoft Tip Leads To Child Porn Arrest In Pennsylvania

mvdwege Re:No you do not (353 comments)

No, I didn't 'read an opinion on pros and cons of large-scale snooping' as an anti-government rant. I read an anti-government rant, which had nothing to do with the topic at hand, namely Microsoft snooping on your mail.

My exact opinions don't matter, and I don't have to provide a complete essay to tell you that you were off-topic.

about two weeks ago
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Microsoft Tip Leads To Child Porn Arrest In Pennsylvania

mvdwege Re:No you do not (353 comments)

Blah blah blah Standard Libertarian Dismount blah blah blah

Dude, you turned a corporation misusing its power to go off on an anti-government rant. Without MS or Google's power, the government couldn't have gotten involved, so please keep your puberal ranting to yourself.

about two weeks ago
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Microsoft Tip Leads To Child Porn Arrest In Pennsylvania

mvdwege Re:No you do not (353 comments)

One fly in your ointment: last I checked Google and Microsoft were not the Government.

about two weeks ago
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Facebook Seeks Devs To Make Linux Network Stack As Good As FreeBSD's

mvdwege Re:FreeBSD network stack (195 comments)

Ok, who did I hurt by contradicting his faith?

about two weeks ago
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Facebook Seeks Devs To Make Linux Network Stack As Good As FreeBSD's

mvdwege Re:FreeBSD network stack (195 comments)

Ok, that's too bad. I was genuinely curious about the work being done.

Sorry if I sounded a bit gruff, but when I see categorical statements, I like to have references to check myself.

about two weeks ago
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Facebook Seeks Devs To Make Linux Network Stack As Good As FreeBSD's

mvdwege Re:FreeBSD network stack (195 comments)

[citation needed]

I really want to believe you are sincere and everything you say is true. Unfortunately, you don't seem to have provided any references.

This is the Web. Hyperlinks exist for a reason. Use them.

about two weeks ago
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Big Bang Actors To Earn $1M Per Episode

mvdwege Re:Yawn (442 comments)

It's nonsense. Individualism is all fine and dandy, but completely denying any commonality is quite frankly stupid. And rather typical of geeks, so there you have at least one point of geek culture: the persistent belief that we're all special snowflakes. Even I find that one hard to shed.

There are certainly some traits that carry over between the groups you mentions. A love for a logically ordered universe is at least one of them. Yes, geek culture has strands in it that may be conflicting. D'oh. Just like baseball fans might dislike American Football, doesn't make either of those groups part of American culture.

about two weeks ago
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Big Bang Actors To Earn $1M Per Episode

mvdwege Re:Yawn (442 comments)

I do get the controversy.

I like the show; when it takes its character and setting seriously, it brings some good humour to the table, and some interesting plotlines.

Of course, there's a "however..." in this. Too many episodes focus on the outside view of geek culture, making it more a case of laughing at geeks instead of laughing with the characters about things that are relatable.

And then there is their wildly inconsistent characterisation. Especially Penny swings from 'willing to accept Leonard's idiosyncracies', to the mainstream standard 'grow up and throw your toys away' attiturde.

Conclusion: flawed in places, but still fun.

about two weeks ago
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"Secret Serum" Used To Treat Americans With Ebola

mvdwege Re:ROI for drug development (390 comments)

Yes, because universities capable of running top class research laboratories have absolutely no costs associated with them. They're built on dreams and staffed by fairies.

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: What To Do About the Sorry State of FOSS Documentation?

mvdwege Re:Yes! (430 comments)

The Ubuntu forums overflow with very friendly idiots who cannot do anything but post "I have the same issue", or cargo cult solutions that are out of date.

about three weeks ago
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Google Spots Explicit Images of a Child In Man's Email, Tips Off Police

mvdwege Re:Others?? (790 comments)

he placed himself in a higher risk/lower freedom category.

He did not. The law enforcement bureaucracy, egged on by the witch-huting public, placed him there.

about three weeks ago
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Amazon's eBook Math

mvdwege Re:Pots and kettles (306 comments)

That Scalzi has an interest in the traditional industry (which he makes no secret of) does not do anything to the content of his argument, being that you should take Amazon's PR piece with a large grain of salt.

Nice ad hominem there, Terry.

about three weeks ago

Submissions

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Recommendations for classic superhero comic collections?

mvdwege mvdwege writes  |  about 2 months ago

mvdwege (243851) writes "Due to being in a relationship with a comics geek, I have gotten interested in the history of superhero comics. I would like to get a better grounding in the Golden Age (pre-Comics Code) comics, so here's my question to the Slashdot audience: what are your recommedations for essential reading? What collections/omnibus editions of Golden Age comics would you recommend?"
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Most Underaprreciated SF Writer

mvdwege mvdwege writes  |  about 2 years ago

mvdwege writes "In the thread on Most Depressing SF there were hundreds of posts and but four mentions of John Brunner, dystopian writer par excellence. Now, given the normally US Libertarian bent of the Slashdot audience, it is understandable that outright British Socialist writer Brunner would get short shrift, but it got me thinking: what SF writers do you know that are, in your opinion, vastly underappreciated?"
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Fukushima finally reaches cold shutdown

mvdwege mvdwege writes  |  more than 2 years ago

mvdwege writes "The BBC reports that the reactors at Fukushima have reached cold shutdown, meaning that they no longer need active cooling to stay at safe temperatures. Plans can now be made to start the cleanup of the site. Unfortunately, TEPCO has also admitted that not all problems were out in the open until now; an estimated 45 cubic metres of contaminated water have leaked out of cracks in the foundation of a treatment plant."
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How not to handle a security bug

mvdwege mvdwege writes  |  more than 2 years ago

mvdwege writes "Calibre is a cross platform application to manage collections of ebooks. It provides you with a set of helpers that, among other things, allow you to easily upload content from your PC to your ebook reader. Unfortunately, instead of relying on system tools, the author has written his own mount helper to manage removable devices, and as usual with people inventing the wheel themselves made a series of critical security mistakes, such as overlooking race conditions. In a setuid application no less. The ensuing discussion is a prime example on how not to handle a security bug report."
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Prominent female dev harassed out of tech

mvdwege mvdwege writes  |  more than 2 years ago

mvdwege writes "Alex Bayley, until recently known as Kirrily Robert, and in tech circles better known as 'Skud', has decided to quit all her Open Source work and move into a different career because of persistent gender-based harassment.
Matthew Garret wonders if a persistent unwillingness to speak out against sexist trolling and outright harassment isn't a worse problem than the trolling itself."

Link to Original Source
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Dennis Ritchie dies

mvdwege mvdwege writes  |  more than 2 years ago

mvdwege writes "Rob Pike, long time collaborator, confirms on his Google+ account that Dennis Ritchie, co-creator of the C programming language has died this morning. I learned my first C ages ago from the famous K&R book, and I'm sad to see another part of my computing youth pass away."
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Journalist dumps date for playing 'Magic'

mvdwege mvdwege writes  |  more than 2 years ago

mvdwege writes "So, you're a hard-working up and coming young journalist, too busy to have a social life, so you make an OKCupid profile.

After getting hit by creeps and weirdos, a charming fellow turns up and asks you out. You go on a date and enjoy yourself, until you find out this guy plays Magic; in fact, he's world champion.

So what do you do? You publicly dump him in a Gizmodo article, making fun of his nerdy hobby."

Link to Original Source
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Nokia to sell Symbian to Accenture

mvdwege mvdwege writes  |  more than 3 years ago

mvdwege writes "Nokia announced today that it is to sell its Symbian software activities to Accenture (following the sale of the Symbian services division to Accenture earlier). This decision leaves one to wonder: who is Accenture going to sell Symbian to, now that the largest manufacturer of Symbian devices is leaving this market?"
Link to Original Source
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TV Tropes Self-Censoring under Google Pressure

mvdwege mvdwege writes  |  more than 3 years ago

mvdwege writes "The popular wiki TV Tropes, a site dedicated to the discussion of various tropes, clichés and other common devices in fiction has suddenly decided to put various of its pages behind a 'possibly family-unsafe' content warning, apparently due to pressure by Google withdrawing its ads.

What puzzles me most is the content that is put behind this warning. TV Tropes features no explicit sexual content, and no explicit violence. It does of course discuss these things, as is its remit, but without actual explicit depictions. In fact, something as relatively innocuous as children being raised by two females, whatever the reason are put behind the content warning, even if the page itself doesn't take a stand on the issue, merely satisfying itself by describing the occurence of this in fiction."

Link to Original Source
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CRU exonerated by second inquiry

mvdwege mvdwege writes  |  more than 4 years ago

mvdwege writes "After being cleared of charges of misconduct by a parliamentary comittee, now the CRU has the results (warning: PDF) of the inquiry into their scientific methods by a panel of scientists. (CRU press release here.

Criticisms: The statistical methods used, though arriving at correct results, are not optimal, and it is recommeded futures studies involve professional statisticians if possible; and the CRU scientists are lacking somewhat in organisation.

A far cry from the widespread allegations of fraud. It seems 'Climategate' is ending with a whimper."
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mvdwege mvdwege writes  |  about 8 years ago

mvdwege writes "Apparently, Eric Raymond has decided that proprietary software is now a good thing, according to The Register. I must say it is rather revealing how easily he is willing to compromise on this particular freedom. Is his earlier vocal proclamation of the importance of freedom (still visible on his homepage mere posturing? And if so, how about his vocal support of other freedoms?"

Journals

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Short thought on the violentacrez kerfluffle

mvdwege mvdwege writes  |  about 2 years ago

On the minor Internet kerfluffle that erupted when Gawker's Adrian Chen outed the identity of Reddit participant violentacrez, I have one minor thought:

Sure, the First Amendment means you can be a creep on the Internet as long as you skirt the edge of legality, but it also means that other people have the right to point out you're a creep.

Funny thing about rights: they work both ways.

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The REAL lessons from Fukushima, part 1

mvdwege mvdwege writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Reading technologically oriented web forums, like e.g. Slashdot, amongst those that are not outright against nuclear power, two views seem to dominate in this author's opinion:

- The earthquake and tsunami were unprecedented, no-one could prepare for that.

- If only TepCo had sited their backup generators better, there would
    not have been a problem

As a computer security professional, this line of thinking sounds familiar to me: it's a 'Default Allow' strategy. This is where you allow full operation, and only build in safeguards or blocks against exceptional circumstances.

Unfortunately, as any professional in the field can tell you, this is a losing strategy; defense against exceptions is futile, as there will always be an exploit that you did not foresee. This makes your security policy an endless race to catch up to the bad guys, a race where you will always trail the leader.

If the nuclear industry's view on safety really comes down to assuming safety and planning for contingencies, then any mistrust thrown their way is deserved. This strategy leaves us scrambling for a solution when, not if, a disaster occurs. Fukushima is merely a case in point.

The only way to implement fundamentally safe nuclear power is:

- Make sure that with no outside intervention the reaction slows down
    and stops gracefully. Any system that relies on outside influences
    on the reactor core to keep it stable is fundamentally unsound.

- Assume failure. Build emergency response procedures assuming total
    failure of even the passive systems mentioned above. The point is
    not to think of what can go wrong and try to prevent it, but act to
    contain the damage if things do go wrong.

As long as these two principles are not implemented, not widely supported, and not communicated to the public, the industry will have to live with a well-deserved reputation of being dishonest about the risks of nuclear power.

Part 2, with my thoughts on what the other problem in the nuclear industry is coming up next.

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