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Comments

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Scotland's Independence Vote Could Shake Up Industry

mvdwege Re:Take the long view (486 comments)

Rather raises the question of why we went from devomax from full-independence-or-nothing in the space of twenty-four months.

No it does not. For fucks sake, I'm a Dutchman, I don't follow the UK news daily, and even I know that it was the Unionists who insisted on a two-alternative referendum. Salmond as negotiator offered Devo-Max as a possibility and was shot down.

What is it with you guys? Is reading and checking facts for yourself really that sodding hard?

2 days ago
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Scotland's Independence Vote Could Shake Up Industry

mvdwege Re:Not going to be as rosy as the YES! campaign sa (486 comments)

I don't who taught you to read, but even across the North Sea it's obvious that it is Better Together, not the Yes campaign, who are threatening a nasty vicious divorce.

And second, it's an entire Yes campaign. It's not just the SNP. If even I can get that from here in the Netherlands, what's your excuse?

2 days ago
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Why Atheists Need Captain Kirk

mvdwege Re:Great idea! Let's alienate Science even more! (896 comments)

Well, yes, they do. Just look at the popularity of various autocratic authoritarian political parties, from the US Republicans down to the Golden Dawn in Greece.

Certainly, in well-functioning democracies they do not form enough of a majority to actually overthrow the rule of law on its own, but the fact that they can poll up to 40% of the populace easily demonstrates that there is a streak of authoritarian followers in every population.

4 days ago
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Why Atheists Need Captain Kirk

mvdwege Re:illogical captain (896 comments)

Christopher Hitchens in short: "Be an egocentric asshole". Which he certainly proved to be; whatever his faults, the man was at least consistent in his values.

4 days ago
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When Scientists Give Up

mvdwege Re:Doesn't surprise me (347 comments)

As I already pointed out, Bruno was not burned for his scientific views, but his religious ones. And as it turns out, so was d'Ascoli.

The church, both the Catholic and the various Protestant ones, has done enough damage without needing to invent more. So far I haven't seen proof of scientists being burned for their scientific views. You'll have to do better than this.

about a week ago
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When Scientists Give Up

mvdwege Re:Doesn't surprise me (347 comments)

You realize of course that there was a time about 500 years back, when scientists were actually burned at the stake for having the wrong theory?

Got any examples? The closest thing I can think of is Galileo, and he got in hot water more for playing politics the wrong way, not for his scientific insights per se. And all he got was house arrest in a luxurious villa.

And no, don't mention Giordano Bruno. He was not burned for adhering to Copernicanism, but for his religious views.

about a week ago
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Ask David Saltzberg About Being The Big Bang Theory's Science Advisor

mvdwege Re: Why do you participate? (226 comments)

I mostly agree, but I must say that the writing is uneven enough that the show does not get a complete pass from me. There are too many episodes that just go for the lazy stereotype joke for that.

On the other hand, the episodes that take the characters seriously often have some fine comedy moments.

So, flawed? Yes. Nerd blackface? Not quite, even though it treads dangerously close to that line too often.

about two weeks ago
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How Big Telecom Smothers Municipal Broadband

mvdwege Re:Crowding Out Effect (111 comments)

Right, so the banks, of their own free will, package up bad loans and sell them as AAA securities, and it's the government's fault.

I give up, you're in incorrigible libertard.

about three weeks ago
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How Big Telecom Smothers Municipal Broadband

mvdwege Re:um (111 comments)

You forgot to mention Al Gore, Hillary Clinton and Nancy Pelosi.

about three weeks ago
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How Big Telecom Smothers Municipal Broadband

mvdwege Re:Crowding Out Effect (111 comments)

I didn't hear of any government officials putting guns to the heads of investment bankers to package up bad loans and sell them as AAA securities. Got any cites for that?

about three weeks ago
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Anita Sarkeesian, Creator of "Tropes vs. Women," Driven From Home By Trolls

mvdwege Re:Just tell them (1262 comments)

Yes, because me advising to do something, which leaves the agency to act upon it with you, is totally the same as threatening to kill you, which leaves you with no agency at all.

Really, the mouthbreathing stupidity on display is shocking. With friends like these, Sarkeesian's critics may as well give up.

about three weeks ago
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Anita Sarkeesian, Creator of "Tropes vs. Women," Driven From Home By Trolls

mvdwege Re:Slashdot comments indicative of the problem (1262 comments)

See here, in all its glory, the mindset of the rapist: "She asked for it and she got it".

about three weeks ago
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Anita Sarkeesian, Creator of "Tropes vs. Women," Driven From Home By Trolls

mvdwege Re:Just tell them (1262 comments)

Yes, completely warranted. The piece of shit that apologises for rape and death threats would improve the human race by committing suicide. Now, since you seem to lack completely in empathy and self-reflection, I just know this will just whizz over your empty head, but so be it.

And there is a big difference between advising suicide and actually threatening death and murder, but again, seeing as that you are a victim-blaming piece of shit rape apologist, I don't think the distinction is clear to you; the lack of brain cells may have something to do with this.

TL;DR: FOAD.

about three weeks ago
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Anita Sarkeesian, Creator of "Tropes vs. Women," Driven From Home By Trolls

mvdwege Re:Just tell them (1262 comments)

Oh fuck off you Neanderthal.

It's basic fucking human decency to not threaten people with rape and death. If you can't take that, then go take a walk out of a high window, please.

about three weeks ago
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U.S. Senator: All Cops Should Wear Cameras

mvdwege Re:Federal vs. local decision (Re:I like...) (643 comments)

Speak for yourself. I don't agree with idiot libertards. If they tell me the sun is shining, I go outside to check.

And no, I'm not going to discuss this with you. I've seen your posts, you're one of the most dogmatic of the lot, almost as bad as roman_mir.

about three weeks ago
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How Red Hat Can Recapture Developer Interest

mvdwege Re:not sexist (232 comments)

It would also prevent neanderthal cavemen like you from screaming out their battle cry 'political correctness'.

Aw, who am I kidding? You guys won't shut up until every woman is back to barefoot and pregnant. Good thing that won't happen, so we'll just have to wait until you die out.

about three weeks ago
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How Red Hat Can Recapture Developer Interest

mvdwege Re:not sexist (232 comments)

All true. But they could have avoided all that by using the neutral 'they/their'. That has a pedigree dating back to the 14th century.

about three weeks ago
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U.S. Senator: All Cops Should Wear Cameras

mvdwege Re:Federal vs. local decision (Re:I like...) (643 comments)

the injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere

That's not the winning argument you think it is. Even across the Atlantic I know enough of US Constitutional history and law to know that this is in fact a driver for expanding Federal power. The prime example? Fourteenth Amendment.

I agree with mrex here: you show an abominably bad understanding of US history.

about three weeks ago

Submissions

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Recommendations for classic superhero comic collections?

mvdwege mvdwege writes  |  about 3 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  |  more than 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  |  about 3 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  |  more than 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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Wilting flowers

mvdwege mvdwege writes  |  about three weeks ago

When Anita Sarkeesian posts a mildly critical video on how women are portrayed in video games, she gets rape and death threats serious enough to flee her home, and a large portion of the comments are basically saying "she asked for it".

But dare to call such posters rape apologists, or shitheads, or imply that suicide would make the world a better place, and suddenly the screams for fainting couches are deafening, and pearl-clutching moderators mod you down.

What a bunch of wilting flowers. Really, if you can't take it, don't dish it out, or else shut the fuck up when people call you out for the despicable cowardly piece of shit you are.

I spurn you like I would a rabid dog. I wouldn't trust any of you to sit the right way on a toilet seat.

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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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