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States That Raised Minimum Wage See No Slow-Down In Job Growth

thepainguy ...in the short term (778 comments)

As with an increase in the price of gas, most of the effects of raising the minimum wage (and thus the price of labor) will have their impact felt over the course of years, as employers have time to implement programs that will replace more expensive people with less expensive machines.

about 2 months ago
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Climate Change Prompts Emperor Penguins To Find New Breeding Grounds

thepainguy Read the Article and it Contradicts the Headline (215 comments)

They thought decreasing numbers were due to birds dying, but they were actually due to birds changing breeding locations (for unknown reasons).

Basically, and contrary to the headline, the article says they don't know enough about penguin breeding behavior to draw any conclusions.

"Over five years in the late 1970s, the Southern Ocean warmed and at the same time the penguin colony at Pointe Géologie, declined by half (6,000 breeding pairs to 3,000 breeding pairs). The decline was thought to be due to decreased survival rates. In other words, researchers thought that the warming temperatures were negatively impacting the survival of the species...'It’s possible that birds have moved away from Pointe Géologie to these other spots and that means that maybe those banded birds didn’t die,' LaRue said. 'If we want to accurately conserve the species, we really need to know the basics. We’ve just learned something unexpected, and we should rethink how we interpret colony fluctuations.'”

P.S. Want to know why people are skeptical about climate change "science" and advocacy? It's because of blurbs like this one that say one thing in the headline and something else in the linked-to article.

about 3 months ago
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Meat Makes Our Planet Thirsty

thepainguy There's more to the world than California (545 comments)

Just because raising cattle in CA doesn't make sense, it doesn't mean it doesn't make sense to raise cattle anywhere else.

I LOL when I hear my kids get lectured about the need for water conservation in books that act like California and the midwest are equivalent biomes.

about 7 months ago
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US Customs Destroys Virtuoso's Flutes Because They Were "Agricultural Items"

thepainguy Re:Eventually people will look up... (894 comments)

Beware of people whose only marketable skills are their loyalty and their ability to follow rules to the letter.

about 9 months ago
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Sun Not a Significant Driver of Climate Change

thepainguy Re:And what was the driving factor before 1900? (552 comments)

And the Medieval Warm Period...? And do you honestly believe that the sun is a totally static object that hasn't changed over time?

about 9 months ago
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Boston Police Stop Scanning Registration Plates, For Now

thepainguy The police have no ability to control motorcycles? (110 comments)

I could have told you that based on how they handle, or don't, the guys who go racing up and down the highway at 100+MPH and who obstruct highway traffic to do their tricks.

It's pathetic, not to mention a menace.

about 10 months ago
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Officials Say HealthCare.gov Site Now Performing Well

thepainguy Re:Tried to Sign Up, Already Frustrated (644 comments)

You are out of touch with reality. It's awesome that your company is so enlightened, but I've worked as a consultant at many many places and I know what things look like in the trenches.

about 10 months ago
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Officials Say HealthCare.gov Site Now Performing Well

thepainguy Re:Tried to Sign Up, Already Frustrated (644 comments)

Oh, and I'm not dispensing security advice. I'm telling you what's going on in the real world. Whether you listen or not is your choice, but it doesn't change anything.

about 10 months ago
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Officials Say HealthCare.gov Site Now Performing Well

thepainguy Re:Tried to Sign Up, Already Frustrated (644 comments)

Because I am a normal human being, not a programmer, and I can only remember so many username and password combinations.

P.S. I am trying to distribute insight into how ordinary people think and work. Based on comments like yours, that is something that seems to be sorely needed.

about 10 months ago
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Officials Say HealthCare.gov Site Now Performing Well

thepainguy Re:Tried to Sign Up, Already Frustrated (644 comments)

Welcome to the real world where people can't remember different username and password combinations for different sites.
Deal with it.

about 10 months ago
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Officials Say HealthCare.gov Site Now Performing Well

thepainguy Re:Tried to Sign Up, Already Frustrated (644 comments)

Sites that rule standards characters in or out are driving down security because all of the standards vary. Maybe that is by design, to prevent standard passwords, but the end result for 99% of the population isn't something that is more secure.

In terms of standard passwords, I'd like to introduce you to the ordinary person who can't handle a different password for every site. I can't for sites that I don't regularly visit, like healthcare.gov.

about 10 months ago
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Officials Say HealthCare.gov Site Now Performing Well

thepainguy Re:Tried to Sign Up, Already Frustrated (644 comments)

The password requirements state...

"It can't contain your username or any of these characters = ? ( ) ‘ " / \ &"

It just so happens that I use one of those characters in my standard secure password. I've never had a problem with that character before except for one site (which ironically is my bank, and which forces me to use a password that is less secure than my standard password due to its banning special characters.

Seriously, all of these different password standards are a huge cause of security problems.

about 10 months ago
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Officials Say HealthCare.gov Site Now Performing Well

thepainguy Tried to Sign Up, Already Frustrated (644 comments)

So I'm in the process of trying to sign up for healthcare.gov. I'm already having problems, because it won't accept my e-mail address as my username, even though it would appear to fit the criteria.

"The username is case sensitive. Choose a username that is 6-74 characters long and must contain a lowercase or capital letter, a number, or one of these symbols _.@/-"

If they are having problems explaining the most basic things, I'm not hopeful.

The site is also less secure for me because none of my standard, extremely secure, never before had a problem with them passwords will work for it. That will force me to write it down, making the site inherently less secure.

5 Minutes later...

LOL. What an absolute piece of garbage of a web site. I tried to change my username to just the username of my email address and the site says it's invalid. It should be valid based on the instructions, but no joy. If they actually want the username to contain a number, then that's a joke; it's something I've never seen before on ANY website EVER.

WHO LAID OUT THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THIS SITE? JOE BIDEN? HAVE THEY NEVER EVEN USED THE INTERNET?

When sites come up with new, unusual standards for usernames and passwords (e.g. must contain a %, *, or ^), then they are making the site less secure because they are increasing the odds that people will have to write down their usernames and passwords.

about 10 months ago
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How MOOC Faculty Exploit People's Desire To Learn

thepainguy What college did you go to? (115 comments)

"...successful completion of courses are sometimes held hostage in exchange for mandatory participation in research, as in this case study of a Coursera MOOC. Such behavior is not tolerated in 'real' college courses..."

Signing up for one or more experiments was a requirement of every undergrad psych class I took.

about 10 months ago
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The 'Linux Inside' Stigma

thepainguy How about improving the Linux user experience? (366 comments)

Or the install/distribution model? There are valid reasons why people don't want to mess with Linux. many don't want to get all into the technology. They just want something that works, works well, and works easily.

Look at the Mac. It's UNIX, but people don't know or care. It's about the experience and the value they receive.

about a year and a half ago
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Ask Slashdot: Best Way To Block Noise In a Dorm?

thepainguy Classical music (561 comments)

I used classical music as a white noise generator. I can't concentrate when listening to music with lyrics, but I needed something to overwhelm the noise. The nice thing is that you get cultured in the process. You can get the 100 best works of ___ for relatively cheap.

about a year and a half ago

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