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Japanese Maglev Train Hits 500kph

risom Re:stupid germans (419 comments)

Can any other country boast a top political leader who has a STEM leader . . . ?

Sure: China. Practically everyone on the top for the last 5 decades was a STEM person.

about a month ago

Pitivi Video Editor Surpasses 50% Crowdfunding Goal, Releases Version 0.94

risom Re:Honest question (67 comments)

Gnome2, AmaroK, Songbird... Yea, OSS just isnt the miracle elixir people like to pretend it is, and "Just fork it" isnt an effective incantation.

But the Mate Desktop, a Gnome 2 fork, exists, so GP seems to be right: If it's popular enough, it will live on.

about a month and a half ago

Pope Francis Declares Evolution and Big Bang Theory Are Right

risom Re:Tip of the iceberg (669 comments)

There's actually a lot of potentional scientific correct stuff in the Bible.

The point about science is the process, not the result. There may be correct content in the bible, but that does not make it scientific.

about 2 months ago

VeraCrypt Is the New TrueCrypt -- and It's Better

risom Re:Oblig xkcd (220 comments)

Meanwhile, they let you rot in prison. Thats what key disclosure laws are about.

about 2 months ago

Living On a Carbon Budget: The End of Recreation As We Know It?

risom Re:Lots of cheap carbon stuff (652 comments)

Thanks for following up! You had a small mixup there, 28 million were all pregnancies, including planned ones, leaving only 12.25 unplanned pregnanies, of which 3.3 occur in the U.S, which is a bit above average, given 1.2 billion people in developed nations.

The absolute numbers are misleading, though, as pregnancies are not evenly distributed among the countries. More relevant the relative amount of unplanned pregnancies among all pregnancies among a given country. There, the U.S. has 49% - 51% ([1],[2]) unplanned pregnancies, France has 33% [1] and Britain has 16% [1].

The numbers get even more drastic if you look at teenagers only. There, the US has 5 times as much unplanned pregnancies (relative to overall population) as Germany [3].

[1] = http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/U...
[2] = http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs...
[3] = http://www.profamilia.de/filea...

about 2 months ago

Living On a Carbon Budget: The End of Recreation As We Know It?

risom Re:Lots of cheap carbon stuff (652 comments)

We have about 3.3 million unplanned pregnancies annually in the u.s. alone which are not aborted due to recreational sex.

Thats a problem of the bad sex ed in the US, not a problem of birth control. No other developed country has unplanned pregnancy rates that high.

about 2 months ago

15-Year-Old Developing a 3D Printer 10x Faster Than Anything On the Market

risom Re:Another child making unsupported claims (203 comments)

It's hard to fit into a world where the average person really is dumber than you.

Quite the opposite, the 50% of the population has no problem to "fit into a world where the average person really is dumber than you."

The problem is not the intelligence of the kid, but the fact he thinks he's gifted. If you achieve good grades in school without effort and your parents constantly tell you you're gifted, you never really learn the correlation between effort and achievement. Then, suddenly, the real world kicks in. Other young adults, not gifted but learning none the less, catched up. Now they get the interesting jobs.

If you have contact to a gifted child, it's important to give him/her appropriate input. Put the focus on productive output, on effort (e.g. for a kid with math skills: Present interesting engineering problems, perhaps a bridge has to be built over a creek or something similar). On helping others and on developing the ability to communicate effectively with non-gifted kids (or adults).

about 5 months ago

Winners of First Seized Silk Road Bitcoin Auction Remain Anonymous

risom Re:One stupid question (88 comments)

The difference is liquidity. Bitcoins market depth is tiny. A truck full of Euros (about the same market value as the bitcoins) sold at market rate wouldn't be noticable on the charts. 30k of bitcoins sold at market rate would absolutely crush the market.

about 6 months ago

How Often Do Economists Commit Misconduct?

risom Re:Political/Moral (305 comments)

An "economist" like in the article is a macro economist while your investing neighbor most probably is a micro economist. Same field, different point of view. A macro economist does stuff like predicting the housing bubble, but may suck mightily as a CEO of a company (and vice versa for the micro economist).

about 6 months ago

Google Starts Removing Search Results After EU Ruling

risom Re:Good. (138 comments)

That's great and all, but if I walk into the streets of oh let's say France, I don't need to worry if I'm a Jew that Christians are going to start attacking me.

If you are a Jew in France you have a pretty high propability of Christians attacking you. You should read real news more often, France has a massive racism problem right now. Jews are emigrating from France at an unprecedented scale (WW2 excluded).

about 6 months ago

Match.com, Mensa Create Dating Site For Geniuses

risom Re:IF.. (561 comments)

Really? I don't find the legitimate ones bad at all. Much better than the SAT for testing raw, innate intelligence. IQ is like a brightness of a flashlight. It's potential. Brighter is better, but it doesn't guarantee you point it at a useful direction, or even use it for anything useful at all other than to study playboy under the bedsheets.

The problem is that IQ as a variable is pretty useless in practice. It has no prognostic validity for success in life or in a job. Motivation is far more important for that, but it's also harder to measure.

I would think if they took recent Nobel Prize winners in the hard sciences, they would be trending above average and by a margin.

Sure, but you would find even more high-IQ persons in quite mundane jobs. IQ is a confounding variable for success. Counter example: most Nobel Prize winners are male, too. Is that the reason for their success?

about 6 months ago

"Super Bananas" May Save Millions of Lives In Africa

risom Re:And hippies will protest it (396 comments)

Given that hunger in developing nations is mostly an issue of distribution, not production (africa mostly is anything but arid: https://www.google.com/search?...), I would indeed be impressed if GMO bananas will help here.

about 6 months ago

US Climate Report Says Global Warming Impact Already Severe

risom Re:sigh (627 comments)

We could fix this problem easily with barely any significant change to our style of life.

Similarly, residential electricity prices in Germany (note that Germany and Denmark, both with heavily subsidized, high share "green" power generation, have electricity pricing on par with small island nations)

Two points:
First, in Germany renewables are not heavily subsidized (i.e. tax-financed) at all, but instead cross-financed trough averaging production costs of non-renewables and renwables. No tax money involved.
Second, It does not make sense to compare the price per kWh when the overall effiency is so vastly different to the USA :While I am paying about .29EUR per kWh on my renewables-only plan, in absolute numbers that amounts to only 40EUR per month on electricity for a 4 person household. We have a well insulated house, efficient appliences, LED lighting everywhere, efficient computers etc. With absolute consumption as low as that, I couldn't care less about the price per kWh.

about 7 months ago

YouTube Ordered To Remove "Illegal" Copyright Blocking Notices

risom Re:Bullshit (427 comments)

No one said they have to licence it for free. The debate between Google and Gema revolves around technicalities of payment. Most other royality collectors agreed to get an undisclosed percentage of advertisement earnings for the licences, but GEMA insists on a flat fee, regardless of amount of viewers etc. of a particular track. AFAIK GEMA is the only royality collector worldwide insisting on that.

about 10 months ago

A Corporate War Against a Scientist, and How He Fought Back

risom Re: Sounds like he was enjoying himself! (253 comments)

Most other developed countries have equal or higher teacher's salaries and don't have a student debt problem at all. That pretty much falsifies you view on the topic (and would have been trivial for you to find out for yourself).

about 10 months ago

Meet the Electric Porsche From 1898

risom Re:Hmm (143 comments)

Started a car manufacturing company producing high-tech electric vehicles that make anything produced in Detroit these days look like a Model T.

At the risk of being nit-picky: Musk only invested in Tesla, not started it. The investment was significant and included the right for Musk to call himself co-founder IIRC.

about a year ago

Larry Ellison Believes Apple Is Doomed

risom Re:CEOs are overrated (692 comments)

Apple managed to secure virtually the entire output of 1.8" hard drives from Toshiba (the only manufacturer of such drives at the time).

Many players at that time already had 1" hard drives, so 1.8" doesn't sound very impressive (1.8" drives were introduced in 1993 BTW).

The iPhone was the first capacitive touchscreen phone.

No, the LG Prada was the first one. Look it up: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LG_Prada

about a year ago

Why Engineering Freshmen Should Take Humanities Courses

risom Re:I would have thought it more important (564 comments)

I think the idea that scepticism comes from humanities rather than science is a joke, and shows a complete misunderstanding of falsifiability and Karl Popper's work on the philosophy of science.

You are aware that Popper was a professor at a humanist department, right? That whole "philosophy of science" thing could have been a hint...

about a year and a half ago


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