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The Dutch Village Where Everyone Has Dementia

swell "I am not a number!" (228 comments)

Shades of another quaint and serene Village from 1967, where The Prisoner (- a Secret Agent, played by Patrick McGoohan) was kept in a surreal setting among people who sometimes behaved as though brain dead. The quote reflects the prisoner's anger that nobody in the Village would call him by name; only his assigned number 6.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/T... [Wikipedia]

Still, everything was provided to the inmates. If The Prisoner wasn't so stubborn he might have enjoyed it. (Youngsters rejoice; if you missed the original Prisoner TV series, you may have another chance- director Christopher Nolan may be planning a movie version.)

3 days ago
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Group Tries To Open Source Seeds

swell seed banks (99 comments)

This is a good place to discuss the seed banks around the world where the genetic diversity of endangered (and extinct) plants is protected. I'm not expert but perhaps you are.

Also, it seems that the opensourceseedinitiative site hasn't seen any activity for many months. Are they endangered too?

3 days ago
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Drone Sightings Near Other Aircraft Up Dramatically

swell Re:the Government (132 comments)

"The government is getting near-daily reports..."

As I hinted, 'the government' is a useless phrase. Are we referring to the US Commerce Dept? The US FDA? The California Dept. of Food and Agriculture? The Texas Dept. of White Supremacy? There are ten thousand agencies, most unrelated to the others and few that the US Administration can be held responsible for (but go ahead, blame Obama). It is helpful to be specific.

about a week ago
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Drone Sightings Near Other Aircraft Up Dramatically

swell the Government (132 comments)

"The government is getting near-daily reports..."

I want Slashdot readers to know I love them for so many insights. But let's not be arrogant about US citizenship. Many readers are not so blessed, and when we say "the government" they may be confused about which we are referring to.

Please, then, say "the US government" if that is what you are speaking of. Notice that most of those outsiders specify which government they are speaking of. And for all you little foreigners, I hope you benefit from this message.

about a week ago
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After Silk Road 2.0 Shutdown, Rival Dark Net Markets Grow Quickly

swell circular links (86 comments)

The link is to dailydot.com. Every link at dailydot is to another dailydot page. Yes, this often happens at slashdot, but it is a sign of, um, what should I call it? When you only link to your own site, you may not be serving the public as well as you could.

I'd like to see links to insightful pages outside the original site. That is increasingly harder to find. This 'Evolution' site is said to be the 'biggest Dark Net market of all time' and yet there is no link to it or to any site that has something useful to say about it. This /. story seems to be a useless tease.

about a week ago
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Prehistory's Brilliant Future

swell meh (50 comments)

I was a great fan of paleontology as a child. I was in awe of the creatures and the dedicated scientists that discovered them. Now, not so much.

After many decades of exploration and documentation of discoveries, how much useful information has been uncovered? These new discoveries are mildly interesting to an adult.

Biology in the past, as biology today is not built upon awesome organisms that prey on giant creatures; it is far more about microscopic organisms. These often determine the fate of the glamorous plants and animals, and are far more important.

As an adult, I'd like to learn about the less visibly impressive creatures that truly formed the world we have now. Funding for the study of ancient amoeba, fungi and bacteria may be hard to find, but should honest research take second fiddle to spectacular showmanship?

about two weeks ago
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Washington Dancers Sue To Prevent Identity Disclosure

swell hand-y question re: 'the godly citizen' (461 comments)

"so he can 'pray for them', on the other hand"

So, um, what is he doing with the first hand?

about two weeks ago
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Codecademy's ReSkillUSA: Gestation Period For New Developers Is 3 Months

swell Re:Ridiculous, but so are college degrees (173 comments)

[good analysis from parent]

Western Civilization was built upon an education system that was intended to prepare students for life. They were instructed in the Arts and Sciences (such as they were then) and the skills to succeed in their environment. Philosophy and analytic thinking were prized.

It may be the Industrial Age that brought about our current thinking about education. Early on, there was still emphasis upon languages, history, philosophy; but more and more education came to be about training people to feed industrial needs.

Now there is little pretense of preparing a generation to appreciate art, language, culture... Colleges require a smattering of these but it's clearly about job preparation.

The parent article says "I think the industry needs some sort of advanced trade schools..." and that is exactly right. High school students can choose a 'career college' and learn programming, medicine or structural engineering etc, or they can choose a 'liberal college' that teaches them about the world in which they will live- Culture, history, all the arts... These people will become the thoughtful advisers to corporations and government, teachers of younger people, and guides to the people in their own community who lack a broad education. Their motto will be

about two weeks ago
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Long-term Study Finds No Link Between Video Game Violence and Real Violence

swell think of the children (250 comments)

"Violent video game consumption was strongly correlated with declines in youth violence."

This correlates with the number of youths playing violent games in Mom's basement. If they don't leave home, the crime rate drops. Furthermore, being loaded with chips, Twinkies & soda leaves them less able to rise from their desks and commit crimes. Damage to sight & hearing, along with 'trigger twitch' further diminishes their energetic output in crime.

This isn't really a plus for society. Medical care for those gamers who reach adulthood will tax the rest of us heavily. A Kickstarter campaign is proposed for: Think of the Children! It is proposed that by encouraging the kids to masturbate to online porn, they will be cured of their tendency to violence. A parallel campaign will preach: Make Love, not War!

about two weeks ago
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Revolutionary New View of Baby Planets Forming Around a Star

swell Re:Is this the new science-speak? (91 comments)

" One of the things that we've already learned from such images"

TFA suggests that this is a unique image from a new telescope. Are you saying that there are others? Who is this 'we' you are referring to? You say 'according to our models'- are you saying that you are one of the scientists involved? You seem to be suggesting that I should have been able to understand all this from looking at the picture, and yet you have not said how this new image will inform myself and other slashdot readers of anything.

Have you even looked at the image or are you just copying the text of the article?

about two weeks ago
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Revolutionary New View of Baby Planets Forming Around a Star

swell Is this the new science-speak? (91 comments)

...mind blowing, powerful, my friends, mother-of-all, dazzling, awesome, astounded, revolutionize...
Or is it more like something in your spam folder?

That is an amazing telescope but unfortunately to my eyes the pictures are not informative. Perhaps tomorrow some details will be highlighted to show ordinary folks what the excitement is about.

about two weeks ago
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Computer Scientists Say Meme Research Doesn't Threaten Free Speech

swell your mind: the Final Frontier (109 comments)

Geezers will remember the race between USSR & USA to develop 'mind control' technology through much of the last century. America got a late start and rushed to catch up to the decades old Soviet research. Similar to the 'space race' but less publicized. [It is said that-] This research ended in 2003. You may find interesting information with a search for the MKUltra program. Traditional media tend not to report such things but here are some links:
http://www.news.com.au/technol...
https://sites.google.com/site/...

about two weeks ago
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Too Many Kids Quit Science Because They Don't Think They're Smart

swell Re:spare the rod, spoil the child (273 comments)

"Personally I find a fair proportion of jazz a turgid cacophony."

Don't let your own shortcomings limit your children as well. If you don't like Picasso are you suggesting that your children should be expected to do the same? Expose them to the best stimuli available, whether or not you like it. Let them decide. Music, and jazz in particular, seems to have a powerful positive influence on the developing mind. Many forms of art are rooted in mathematics.

about two weeks ago
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Too Many Kids Quit Science Because They Don't Think They're Smart

swell spare the rod, spoil the child (273 comments)

Speak roughly to your little boy
and beat him when he sneezes
he only does it to annoy
because he knows it teases.
[ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/D... ]

Every child should read Alice in Wonderland. It's not easy reading, but they will get it. It presents a complex world that is not easy for young Alice, but she has pluck and forges ahead. It is an adventure that requires courage and confidence and a tremendous example for young people- boys and girls.

Challenge your children. Give them Poe, Swift, R.L. Stevenson, quality scifi, etc. Give them fine music & jazz, fine art and the opportunity to create art, give them geography, history, dinosaurs and bioscience. Don't numb their brains with superhero TV & games.

There is more to education than job training. There is life. Give them a head start. Love them.

about two weeks ago
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EFF Begins a Campaign For Secure and Usable Cryptography

swell missing from the Scorecard (96 comments)

"usable by ordinary people"

We would have had encrypted communications long ago if PGP, etc were usable by ordinary people. The Scorecard is a good start in evaluating the security of different systems, but there is no effort whatsoever to evaluate usability.

about two weeks ago
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SpaceShipTwo's Rocket Engine Did Not Cause Fatal Crash

swell Re:A missing detail (150 comments)

I'm not suggesting that this is the case at this early point in the investigation; but an industry insider who personally studies every airline 'incident' informs me that the months of investigation almost always conclude that 'pilot error' was the cause.

He has found evidence, buried in 5000 pages of dull analysis, that in fact many crashes were due to errors in design or manufacturing. So why blame the pilot? Well, for one thing the pilot is dead and can't testify in most cases. For another, admitting mechanical flaws or design failures can be very expensive for some of the parties involved. Keep in mind that every government regulatory agency exists to serve the industry that they 'regulate' and not so much the public interest.

about two weeks ago
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Buying Goods To Make Nuclear Weapons On eBay, Alibaba, and Other Platforms

swell darknet (260 comments)

We arrange all our 'special' purchases over a secure p>p network and pay in bitcoin.

about three weeks ago
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Researchers Claim Metal "Patch" Found On Pacific Island Is From Amelia Earhart

swell so it's movie time! (94 comments)

Ah yes, a romantic tale of courage, determination and pathos. The intrepid blonde adventuress and her stunningly handsome navigator forced down on a desolate island, doomed to a slow death of hunger and thirst. And yet with only hours to live, a romance can bloom among the giant crabs and tropical breezes... Hollywood- are you on this?

about three weeks ago
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Imagining the Future History of Climate Change

swell Re:Population is the obvious bit everyone knows (495 comments)

"widely discussed over the last century"

I must have missed all that discussion. I didn't miss the death of ZPG (Zero Population Growth) during the time of the right wing christian uprising in the USA. I didn't miss the secret requirement that if a foreign country wanted aid from the US, they had to suppress any information about birth control given to their people. I didn't miss the angry shouting every time someone suggested things like free condoms at universities etc. And the ongoing fuss over abortion...

But I did miss your assertion that everyone knows that population is the problem. Please tell me more.

about three weeks ago
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Imagining the Future History of Climate Change

swell population (495 comments)

No discussion of climate management or any other earthly problem is complete without first understanding the effect of 7 billion humans- mostly underfed, sick and unproductive. How many have to die horribly each day before someone notices? How many children are born with a life expectancy of less than one year, to a mother who can't even feed herself? Is family planning ever going to be taught and enabled in the underprivileged corners of earth? Fix these problems and everything else will improve.

about three weeks ago

Submissions

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don't say "42"

swell swell writes  |  more than 2 years ago

swell writes "I'm preparing a concise video that considers the question "What is the meaning of life?" I've read some historical perspectives (see Wikipedia) and some modern ideas, but you, an enlightened member of the Slashdot elite, are bound to have a more interesting angle. If you can link to sound, pics, video or essays that illustrate your thoughts, so much the better. If you have the ultimate answer we will all be grateful and worship at your feet."
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time is relative

swell swell writes  |  more than 2 years ago

swell writes "Again I am confused by the dates posted with /. stories and elsewhere. I know that Euros and Amers use dates differently but that's no excuse. There is a logical way to present dates that is universal in the digital age: YYMMDD. No need for hyphens or slashes. Add HHMMSS if you like. This works well for me and my file storage system that unerringly sorts dates correctly while minimizing keystrokes and character counts. It will work well for you if you take a few minutes to think about it. So let's get our sh*t together around the world and do the right thing."
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Apple does it again

swell swell writes  |  more than 5 years ago

swell writes "The Onion reports on a dramatic new development from Apple — the keyboardless laptop. A step forward from the traditional iPod interface and the multi-touch iPhone screen. But wait, there's more!

The keyboardless laptop is just a temporary measure while Apple and an unnamed government agency work out the bugs in the Macintosh brain implant still being alpha tested on some Guantanamo 'volunteers'.

Currently it is limited to blasting punk music into their brains 24 hours a day but they expect to be able to add raunchy porn mixed with humorous depictions of Mohammad in the near future.

Game developers are already preparing some vivid shoot-em-up adventures for the US release of the MindBook. With a high speed internet connection it will be possible to incorporate a select 38% of the entire internet into a normal human brain. Email will not be necessary as users will have direct and continuous access to the minds of other users.

Add to this an intuitive Google search function for instant access to The Onion and similar life enhancing knowledge and you have the next evolutionary step in the addictive Mac experience.

Compulsory use of the MindBook will not be required until approximately 2011 according to current Dept. of Homeland Security plans. The IRS is pushing for an earlier mandate. Exemptions will be allowed for government authorities, of course."
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'surveillance society' explored on PBS TV

swell swell writes  |  more than 6 years ago

swell writes "In the US, Public Broadcasting will air "The Last Enemy" set in London & Romania. Personal drama mixes with social paranoia. Episodes run from Oct. 5 — Nov. 2, 2008 and can be seen online shortly after each airing. UK & other viewers may have additional local options. I thought it would be nice to announce this BEFORE the first episode despite the risk that it might stink.
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/masterpiece/lastenemy/"

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