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Comments

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Journalist Sues NSA For Keeping Keith Alexander's Financial History Secret

penguinoid Re:If true. If. (156 comments)

What's Occam's Razor got to say about the fact that I didn't vote for Obama*? My comment was about politicians in general, as you may have noticed from the lack of me saying "Obama".

* I wrote in "Ron Paul", though he wasn't running for president, knowing that my state and district would vote for Obama over Romney. If I'm going to waste my vote anyways (it's pretty clear what my district and state were going to vote), I might as well make some kind of statement.

about half an hour ago
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UK To Allow Driverless Cars By January

penguinoid Re:Better than zombie drivers (183 comments)

I'm not missing the point -- of course the whole "driver bears responsibility" is nothing but pure scapegoating/functioning with current laws/ameliorate people's fears. (Though not the case with partially assisted driving where the automated system requires constant input.) It still doesn't mean that it won't be better than what we have now.

39 minutes ago
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Jesse Jackson: Tech Diversity Is Next Civil Rights Step

penguinoid Re:Confusing position (477 comments)

I pray, when they die, the ghost of MLK spends eternity bitch-slapping the both of them day in and day out.

You heard it here first, CanHasDIY is advocating that MLK go to Hell and/or that the devils' jobs be outsourced to black people.

12 hours ago
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Jesse Jackson: Tech Diversity Is Next Civil Rights Step

penguinoid Re:Stop the idiocracy (477 comments)

people

Way too many people avoid naming names when dealing with race, even in stories that directly cite "black." It's urban black culture that disparages intellect.

No, they are by far not the only ones to disparage intellect. Basically, anyone who is not intellectual, competes with intellectuals, or whose goals are opposed by intellectuals, are likely to disparage intellectuals because it is advantageous to them to do so (odds are, they do this without knowing the reason but rather because that is what their group does). In the case of people who are not intellectual, they have the further reason that they inherently devalue intellectual pursuits as demonstrated by their own choice (or resentment, if it was not their choice).

Just to give a racially biased example, Republicans tend to be rich, white, and to disparage intellectuals. Democrats will disparage intellectuals only on a case-by-case basis of those who's opinions or scientific results are "wrong", while being generally supportive of intellectuals. Groups such as a class where the bottom percentage would fail had the seemingly ironic quality of being extremely viscous and mocking of high achievers, while trying their hardest to be one. And all kinds of other groups of various races are disparaging of intellectuals.

13 hours ago
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More Quantum Strangeness: Particles Separated From Their Properties

penguinoid Sooo.... (121 comments)

So they split a beam based on the spin, then applied a magnetic field that would shift the spin from down to up, either on the particles that already had spin up or on particles that had spin down... and AMAZINGLY only the latter had any effect on the spin. And they also put a blocking filter either on the particles that had spin up, or on the particles that had spin down... and AMAZINGLY only the former reduced the number of particles with spin up. Truly mind-boggling, this quantum stuff.

yesterday
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The Problems With Drug Testing

penguinoid Re:Ten Million (155 comments)

Sometimes things that are "known to be safe and effective" end up killing people or having nasty side-effects, or preventing people from receiving proper treatment. Didn't cigarettes used to be a safe and effective way to lose weight?

yesterday
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The Problems With Drug Testing

penguinoid Liars (155 comments)

Look, none of this is common place. It's very rare. Why? Because if this happens, then the multi-million dollar trial you paid for is worthless and would have to be redone.

That's why they'll tell you that they aren't doing any drugs and this is the only clinical trial they're participating in, and maybe throw in a fake name for good measure.

yesterday
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Journalist Sues NSA For Keeping Keith Alexander's Financial History Secret

penguinoid Re:If true. If. (156 comments)

And yet he hasn't stopped it. In fact, he has explicitly defended and expanded the surveillance state. If he was against it, he would've stopped it by vetoing the Patriot Act extension.

On the other hand, the current expansion and disclosures are resulting in the public demanding and end to it. I, for one, am never quite sure what to attribute to a politician for intent: whether his stated intentions, his actions, or the result of his actions.

yesterday
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The Milky Way Is Much Less Massive Than Previous Thought

penguinoid Re:Dark? (118 comments)

I mean, why dark matter? Why not, "we don't understand gravity yet"?

Because "we don't understand gravity yet" contains no data and makes no predictions (ie, it may well be true but it is unscientific). I think of dark matter as a list detailing exactly where and how much we don't understand gravity or cosmological particle physics. When someone wants to test a new theory of gravity, they will know where to check for discrepancies with GR by looking at where dark matter is; alternately, when someone wants to test a new theory for cosmological particle physics, they can test whether it produces dark matter in the appropriate places.

yesterday
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UK To Allow Driverless Cars By January

penguinoid Better than zombie drivers (183 comments)

Even if the system requires babysitting, it will probably improve the performance of impaired drivers. Think sleepy, drunk, or old people with poor attention, perception, and/or reaction time, narcoleptics, diabetics who got careless about blood sugar, "indestructible" teenage drivers, Mr I-Can't-Leave-My-Cellphone-For-Five-Minutes, parents with cranky kids, Mrs I-Can-Eat-Drink-And-Put-On-Makeup-Whlie-Driving, Mr I-Talk-With-My-Hands-And-Always-Make-Eye-Contact, folks who like to gawk at accidents/scenery/girls, folks having a sneezing fit/heart attack/seizure, and a few others.

yesterday
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UK To Allow Driverless Cars By January

penguinoid New flash: This is about liability, not safety (183 comments)

The human at the wheel is there to take the blame in case something goes wrong. The requirement of having a human at the wheel will also soothe the fears of passengers of both autonomous* and manually driven automobiles, a measure that should help the adaptation of autonomous vehicles and thus save lives.

* Google, putting the "auto" into "automobile" since 2005.

yesterday
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Hackers Plundered Israeli Defense Firms That Built 'Iron Dome' Missile Defense

penguinoid Because hacking doesn't work that way (179 comments)

Why dont these places have malware files spread out in their data files, hide them in a zip file or something.

All malware is data until you tell your computer to run it. If you get hacked by careless people, then I suppose having malware that reports them might work, but they'd have to run it or open it with a compromised program, and on a computer connected to the internet.

2 days ago
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A 24-Year-Old Scammed Apple 42 Times In 16 Different States

penguinoid POS software (408 comments)

I guess someone didn't know the difference between POS software and POS software.

2 days ago
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Senate Bill Would Ban Most Bulk Surveillance

penguinoid Re:Who does the NSA report to? (175 comments)

Don't the NSA report, directly or indirectly, to the President? So if executive branch support a measure to limit bulk surveillance, couldn't they, of their own initiative, direct the appropriate agencies to cancel or modify the mass surveillance programs?

Doing that would eliminate almost all support for passing a bill to prevent domestic spying. What happens after he leaves office?

2 days ago
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Better Living Through Data

penguinoid Yes, most productive (38 comments)

I use the laptop over 50 hours per week on average, and my most productive day is Tuesday.

Yes, I'm sure that what you measured was productivity.

Maybe an even better measure of productivity would be a measure of how much energy your GPU uses?

2 days ago
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New Findings On Graphene As a Conductor With IC Components

penguinoid Toy for slashdotters (34 comments)

Actually, that reminds me... earlier today I read that you can make some interesting stuff by microwaving some graphite. Apparently it's "just like popcorn".

2 days ago
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OKCupid Experiments on Users Too

penguinoid Re:Ok Cupid.... (161 comments)

As opposed to just randomly matching people so as to not have to learn things about people in general nor their users in particular?

2 days ago
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OKCupid Experiments on Users Too

penguinoid Re:OKC's match algos suck (161 comments)

edit: 1) Users of OKCupid trust OKCupid's rating system enough to try harder when it suggests a good match

2 days ago
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OKCupid Experiments on Users Too

penguinoid Re:OKC's match algos suck (161 comments)

Findings include that ... suggesting a bad match is a good match causes people to converse nearly as much as ideal matches would.

All this means is that OKC's match algorithms suck: there's only a weak correlation between match scores and real-world compatibility (like with every other dating site).

No, it means that:
1) People trust OKCupid's rating system enough to try harder when it suggests a good match
2) OKCupid has to take into account their stated match rating, not just length of conversation, when trying to use conversation length as data to improve their algorithm.

2 days ago
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New Findings On Graphene As a Conductor With IC Components

penguinoid Graphene is awesome! (34 comments)

Except for when it comes to actually building stuff with it.

The potential is there, obviously... but compare to how long it took to roll some up into simple tubes in an economically acceptable manner (ie, nanotubes are only just getting some actual use). I'm sure graphene as a computer component will be totally awesome -- but not until someone finds an *easy* way to build it, at most only 100X the cost of the equivalent in silicon.

2 days ago

Submissions

penguinoid hasn't submitted any stories.

Journals

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10 evolutionary commandments

penguinoid penguinoid writes  |  more than 8 years ago

So, what are the 10 commandments as evolution would have them?
1) I am the gene your God, who brought you out of the land of non-existance
2) Thou shalt have no other gods besides me.
3) Thou shalt not swear falsely in my name. (root word for testify is testicle)
4) Remember that your genes run in many things, to keep them alive.
5) Honour thy father and thy mother (for they share half your genes) that thy days may be long upon the land which the gene thy God giveth thee.
6) Thou shalt not use birth control
7) Thou shalt not commit adultery, unless you can get away with it.
8) Thou shalt not steal, unless you can get away with it.
9) Thou shalt not not bear false witness, unless you are bribed or it is advantageous to do so
10) Thou shalt not covet thy neighbours stuff. See rules 7 and 8.

Anyone care to improve on this?

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Funny/Overrated murders karma

penguinoid penguinoid writes  |  more than 9 years ago

So I posted a joke to a story about estimating. Now it wasn't a particularly good joke, but evidentially quite a few people thought it was very funny, others didn't. Results:

* +11, Funny
* + 1, Insightful
* - 9, Overrated

* Karma:Exellent --> Karma:Good
* "Your IP has been temporarily blacklisted due to bad posting"

Now I have heard that +1, Funny and -1, Overrated will change karma by different amounts (specifically, funny will only add a little while overrated will take off a lot). If that is so, I really think that it should be changed in the following manner: Overrated should take off just as many points as the current positive attribute the post has. If the post is at or below the karma level it was posted at, remove a different amount of karma

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The scientific view of religion

penguinoid penguinoid writes  |  more than 9 years ago

It seems my sig,
The scientific view of religion is not atheism. The scientific view is agnosticism and simplicity.
seems to have generated quite a bit of commentary. So I will explain, and feel free to post your views.

I regard atheism as the religious, totally unfounded belief that the set of all gods is { } (the empty set). This is not to be confused with agnosticism with leanings toward atheism, which starts with no preconceptions but tends to believe in atheism because of some rational reason. This might be based on science (especially Occam's Razor), or on the belief that several million scientists are probably right (which is not such a bad argument).

Likewise, I regard the term agnosticism to mean simply "no preconceptions as to the set of gods" and thus not a religion. I wouldn't require an agnostic to justify his views, because there aren't any to justify. (As opposed to the stronger version of agnosticism, who believe that the question of whether there is a god or not can never be answered, who could be asked to justify that belief.)

And yes, I pulled these definitions out of my ass.
And yes, I would have written my sig clearer if it did not have a 120 char limit.

And finally, I will mention that I am annoyed by people who think atheism does not count as religion and is therefore an acceptable point of view for schools/government without any further justification. Don't say atheism is not a religion. Call it a religion, or if you prefer, anti-religion. It is not neutral. It has its set of gods.

As for my own views, I am a confused person who grew up with a Bible in one hand, and an encyclopedia in the other. I see the Bible as a valuable guide on how to be a good person and as a history book (not necessarily completely accurate, but you can verify lots of the important events). Likewise, I try to figure out how the world works through the scientific method. However, I find the moral advice given by the theory of evolution to be disturbing.

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Broken surge protector

penguinoid penguinoid writes  |  more than 9 years ago

I left my computer rurring during a thunderstorm recently, and I think that my surge protector got blasted. Now, the surge protector shuts off randomly (about once a day). Is it normal for broken surge protectors to do that? Is it bad for the computer/OS to be shut off like that frequently (I have EXT3 and Debian 2.4.18)? Or should I just get off my arse and buy myself a new surge protector? Thanks!

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Karma == Excellent

penguinoid penguinoid writes  |  more than 10 years ago

I have achieved Excellent karma, on my 139th post. One of my posts was modded up +5, down to +3, now up to +4, changing my karma down to good and back to excellent.

PS: It's my first time using Slashdot. Also, I have not posted AC since I signed up.

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