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Ask Slashdot: Communication With Locked-in Syndrome Patient?

novium Re:Brain stem strokes and recovery... (552 comments)

What I've heard is that ski helmets don't do much to prevent the kind of concussions most common to skiing (and most likely to kill you) but will help prevent say, skull fractures, so even if it's not going to save your life, it's still well worth investing in to save yourself further pain (and damage to your wallet). And I guess you're good if someone drops a rock from a ski lift, even if you're still pretty much screwed if you get knocked ass over teakettle by someone who should not be on an expert slope (not that I'm bitter or anything). Although I do wish that they'd invest more in creating helmets that would actually be designed for ski accidents. Concussions suck, even if they don't kill you. So I'm always a little skeptical of the push for wearing helmets on absolute safety grounds (rather than "well, it's better than nothing") because damn, I wish more people would kick up a fuss about the helmets being mostly ineffectual for their primary purpose. We need something better than a bandaid.

about 4 months ago
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Dump World's Nuclear Waste In Australia, Says Ex-PM Hawke

novium Re:remote doesn't equal secure (213 comments)

Nevada's got a fair number of fault lines. I know there was a lot of politics involved in Yucca mountain, but I do know that there are a number of real concerns in regards to fault lines and similar.

about 4 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Does Your Job Need To Exist?

novium Re:More people need to work less hours (343 comments)

Yes, exactly. You're the first person I've seen to bring this up, and actually, I think that was part of the professor's original point- at least in the paper he wrote. It's still kind of implicit in this article- the fact that we increased productivity so much that we could all be working fewer hours, but instead we kill ourselves on the 40 or 50 hour work week doing bullshit because that's what's demanded.

about 5 months ago
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An MIT Dean's Defense of the Humanities

novium Re:STEM vs. Humanities (264 comments)

um, no, I think you rather misunderstood my point. Which is that the cultural constructs of race and gender have influenced the study of medicine, so that, for example, women's medical complaints are often characterized as psychological in nature.

Or, in contrast, the way that women, people of color, and the lower classes' small rebellions and bits of non-conformity have often been pathologized. (the history of eugenics, forced institutionalization, and forced sterilization in the United States provides many, many examples of that.)

about 5 months ago
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An MIT Dean's Defense of the Humanities

novium Re:STEM vs. Humanities (264 comments)

And what if, because of your race or gender, medicine has taken a very different approach to your body and your symptoms? Would you care then? for example, women have often been under-treated (or subject to grossly inappropriate treatments) because the default assumption when presenting with mysterious symptoms has been to dismiss it as mental issues. And truthfully, the history of medicine is one in which a lot of "scientific" studies hinged on flawed assumptions as a product of the biases of the scientists who could not see how the very design of their studies would only confirm to them what they already believed? It's still an issue today.

It may matter to you less about your physician (although it should still matter), but I imagine you hope that your doctor is reading studies and was trained by others who are aware of these things in order to ensure the highest quality of care.

about 5 months ago
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Amazon Embodies the Gender Gap in Tech

novium Re:how come we never hear (302 comments)

Then why do girls outperform boys in math until middle school?

about 5 months ago
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Can You Buy a License To Speed In California?

novium Re:Is this a "Free Speech" issue? (325 comments)

This isn't about the plates- which are regulated by the state as you describe, although because it is regulated at the state level, plates look different, state to state- but by the plate *frames*, which I don't think I've seen in the UK. E.g. http://goo.gl/h6vxc2 it's the silver bit around his license plate. Some of them have logos or sayings or whatever around them.

about 6 months ago
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Getting Misogyny, Racism and Homophobia Out of Gaming

novium Re:Myogyny? (704 comments)

Misogyny at root is about seeing women as subhuman, as not having any inherent value but the use others get out of them, and lashing out when that is challenged.

But that's not really the point, we could debate misogyny vs sexism vs whatever for ages, and it's not really relevant. I was just pointing out that you'd probably not feel it were merely pandering (and there's a lot of pandering in the world, there's nothing wrong with it) if the depicted men the same way. Pandering is an added thing, not the whole of the thing. There's a difference. But I find that people have trouble seeing the difference when it comes to women, as they're so inured to seeing women depicted as objects that it doesn't register. A good way might be to compare something like the hawkeye initiative to the ways men are depicted when the intention is fanservice directed at women and gay men. It's a good way to see the difference between "here is a character, who exists to do xyz, and also they are sexy" and "fuckability is the only characteristic this character possesses, and their sole purpose is to turn you on, and that's the only reason we added them in."

about 6 months ago
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Getting Misogyny, Racism and Homophobia Out of Gaming

novium Re:Myogyny? (704 comments)

Even then. Even when you're attracted to members of your own gender, you still don't like seeing yourself reduced to nothing more than a sexual object. It's totally not a required part of finding someone attractive or appreciating the eyecandy or whatever. it's just that reducing a character down to that one characteristic "sexy" that is unpleasant.

about 6 months ago
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Getting Misogyny, Racism and Homophobia Out of Gaming

novium Re:Disable player chat (704 comments)

You just disproved your own example. Who is the point of view character in Meet the Parents? It's Ben Stiller's character. He's the one you're *supposed to sympathize with* He's the protagonist. His fiancee is practically nothing more than a cardboard cut out. She's exists for the sake of the plot; she doesn't have a character. She's ancillary.

But nice try.

about 6 months ago
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Getting Misogyny, Racism and Homophobia Out of Gaming

novium Re:Myogyny? (704 comments)

I doubt you'd see it the same way if the situation were reversed.

about 6 months ago
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Getting Misogyny, Racism and Homophobia Out of Gaming

novium Re:Disable player chat (704 comments)

Let me ask you something, when you see those movies with the bumbling loser and the hot empowered "bitch", which one do you sympathize with? Which one is the narrative sympathetic to? Who is the character you're meant to identify with?

Hint: it's never the woman. Who, as you pointed out, is usually perceived as a "bitch". (who just gets down on a guy trying to have a good time! god, women!)

If you think that's feminism in action, rather than just more of the same patriarchal bullshit, well, you're sadly mistaken.

about 6 months ago
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Getting Misogyny, Racism and Homophobia Out of Gaming

novium Re:Disable player chat (704 comments)

That is extraordinarily disingenuous of you, to pick out two random (and highly controversial, even within academia) *second wave* feminists and represent them as the face of modern feminism (and academic feminism, at that) to the point that I can't even credit you with ignorance, like the other poster, but can only see deliberate malice. Along with quoting a fictional character from a novel and making it look like it's a direct quote by the author of the novel. FFS.

about 6 months ago
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Recent news events re: Bitcoin ...

novium Re:US dollar (192 comments)

Well, among other things, the only form of currency the US government will accept for the payment of taxes, etc, are US dollars. Think about casino tokens: why are red chips worth 5 dollars? Because within the casino, those tokens will be honored for $5 worth of goods, services, or wagers. And you can exchange another currency (dollars) for a red token at the rate of $5/token. If you were say, stuck in the casino indefinitely, and the casino decided that it would no longer accept anything other than chips in payment of your food tab, then well, you'd be eager to exchange your dollars for tokens, and despite being worthless pieces of plastic, the tokens would in fact have inherent value to you.

about 7 months ago
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Will Peggy the Programmer Be the New Rosie the Riveter?

novium missing the point (333 comments)

I'm not shocked, but I am a little disappointed that the discussion here completely missed the main point, which was that maybe all these "women in tech" pushes are fundamentally flawed because they don't actually focus on the women in tech and the careers they've built. Instead the focus seems to be on "look at ms cutie teenager coding!" rather than "look at Ms. Senior Developer working on these interesting projects", and it's detrimental.

That actually makes a lot of sense to me. People need to be able to picture the future of something, an end result. A teenage girl isn't going to really be able to picture herself as a coding wunderkind unless she already is, and if all the images of adults in interesting STEM positions are white dudes, she's going to have a harder time imagining "hey, I could learn this, and then one day be doing job X!" And I think it's important that all this happens at a really subtle level, so it develops a series of expectations that are very hard to counter.

And it's something that's easily applicable outside the specific topic of women and IT jobs. If you want to motivate someone to volunteer, you don't tell them about George The Super Volunteer who single handedly saved orphans, you tell them that you need people to help sort canned goods in order to get food to hungry families. Specific action, specific outcome, both framed in such a way that the person can easily envision themselves in that role. People need to imagine not only how they could do something, but what it would achieve.

If I were trying to get boys to consider careers in nursing, I wouldn't just talk about boys who like biology, I'd talk about men whose nursing careers were successful and rewarding.

about 7 months ago
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Will Peggy the Programmer Be the New Rosie the Riveter?

novium Re:How about Norm the nurse? (333 comments)

I have a friend who spent a summer working as a truck driver. As a trainee, she had another driver with her. Anytime they stopped, she couldn't go anywhere without the other driver present. At first she thought this was an exaggeration, but quickly learned to stick to it, because if she were seen as by herself, even for a minute, she got seriously harassed, mostly on the assumption that because she was female, she must be a prostitute. It was worse when they realized she was a driver.

about 7 months ago
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Majority of Young American Adults Think Astrology Is a Science

novium Re:More likely (625 comments)

Forget young people. The people in our communications department (ages between 30-60) managed to design and mail out a postcard advertising an event for kids that included an astronomy segment as one in which we were going to teach kids "astrology".

Of course they mailed it out to all of the parents, community partners, schools, and donors before showing it to anyone in my department (which was responsible for the event).. The word was in really large type and bold as well.

about 8 months ago
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Getting Young Women Interested In Open Source

novium Re:I'm male but... (545 comments)

Because all male departments already exist, and when they do no one even notices, because it's assumed to be right and natural? It's the same idiotic question as "why does an oppressed minority get to have culture/clubs but it's considered racist to have a White booster group?" whine whine whine.

about 8 months ago
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New England Burns Jet Fuel To Keep Lights On

novium Re:5th dimension; let the sunshine.... (230 comments)

Well, they should get off their fannies and do something about this whole ridiculously resilient ridge that's keeping it from raining at all this winter in California (and is possibly related to the arctic conditions elsewhere...?) Damn it, you just can't trust the military industrial complex to do ANYTHING right. Where are the supervillains when you need 'em?

about 8 months ago
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Nobel Prize Winning Economist: Legalize Sale of Human Organs

novium Re:Yes. (518 comments)

Yes, I would. In the advent that I had enough money to pay someone to give me an organ, I'd still be aware that the point at which someone is will to violate their bodily integrity for money is someone who is so hard up for cash that the issues of consent become irreparably fucked up.

The issues are different if we're only talking organ donation from corpses, but as other people have pointed out, even that creates extremely perverse incentives.

about 8 months ago

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