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Google Aids Scientology-Linked Group CCHR With Pay-Per-Click Ads

umafuckit Re:The Harsh Light of Day (156 comments)

I don't believe that anybody actually believes all that claptrap about Xenu.. L Ron Hubbard made it all up to bilk money out of desparate people, and plenty of other folk are happy to continue the premise and keep the money flowing.. but does anybody actually believe it? I doubt it..

I wouldn't be so sure. I think the main reason it sounds crazy is because this particular belief is shared by comparatively few people. When few people are involved, such beliefs are called cults and are rejected by wider society. It's when crazy beliefs spread and are shared by many people that they're called a religion. Of course different societies draw the line differently.

The beliefs of the Christian church are pretty crazy too, when you stop to think about it, but they're widely accepted in our society so they no longer draw incredulity. Think how crazy this sounds: the Catholic church tells us that during communion the bread and wine literally turn into the blood and body of Christ. However, through some mysterious process, they appear to our senses as unchanged. So the Catholic church tells you that what you're seeing and tasting is wrong, and you should ignore the evidence right in front of you. Presumably, millions of people accept and believe this. Then we have the fact that many Christians believe that everything in the Bible is the inerrant word of God. Yet these same people ignore the parts they don't like (Christians choose to eat pork even though their book tells them not to), they ignore the fact that the Bible is often self-contradictory, and they ignore the fact that the Bible we have today is based on copies of copies that include known errors, additions, and omissions. If God is all-powerful, why is He unable to provide "his inerrant word" in an accurate form, and why is it that he never shows his face?

yesterday
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Beer Price Crisis On the Horizon

umafuckit Re:Don't worry Americans... (381 comments)

I've been to Montreal. The local beer, which was mostly lager, sucked. The Canadian IPAs I tried also sucked. In the US, the big-brand lagers suck too but the hundreds of beers produced by the multitude of US micro-breweries do not suck at all. They're easily some of the best beers in the world.

2 days ago
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Study Rules Out Global Warming Being a Natural Fluctuation With 99% Certainty

umafuckit Re:My 2 cents (857 comments)

Really? Let's examine your claims.

The US has seen a minor decrease in carbon emissions over the last 5 years or so, but this likely at least in part due to the financial crisis. There has been no long-term decrease over the "last 20 years", as you state, so the US isn't setting an example in cutting emissions. What matters, then, is total current emissions, where the US second only to China. The US emitted 5.4 million tonnes in 2010. By comparison, India (one of the countries you single out) and the EU have combined emissions of 5.7 million tonnes. India and China have very much larger populations. The US emissions per capita for 2012 are 16.4 tonnes, whereas China's are 7.1 and India's a paltry 1.6. Clearly the US has a lot of work to do.

about a week ago
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The Problem With Congress's Scientific Illiterates

umafuckit Re:Don't bother. (509 comments)

No, but if they talk shit when they're there you'd hope people would vote them out again. I'm being too idealistic, aren't I?

about two weeks ago
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The Problem With Congress's Scientific Illiterates

umafuckit Re:Don't bother. (509 comments)

It would be tolerable if these people were just conspiracy nuts ala the "moon landing were faked" folks. We could laugh at them and move on with our lives. These people, however, are in seats of power in the government and are making big decisions about scientific funding.

And they're there because they were voted in by people who sympathise with these views. We get the government we deserve because, as a nation, the bulk of the US is scientifically illiterate. There will continue to be illiterates in power as long as the people are illiterate. Somehow we need to find a way to promote science as a way of thinking and do so without hurting the feelings of the religious right.

about two weeks ago
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NASA Can't Ethically Send Astronauts On One-Way Missions To Deep Space

umafuckit Re:Ethical is irrelevant. (402 comments)

They failed in Greenland because they were fuckwits and reared cattle in conditions that couldn't support this. It's amazing they lasted as long as they did. Had they made an effort to live in a more similar manner to the indigenous people, who'd lived there for many centuries, they'd have been ok. The early European settlers didn't have a technology problem, they had a common sense problem.

about three weeks ago
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Canonical Shutting Down Ubuntu One File Services

umafuckit Re:It's a pity (161 comments)

Try Copy. It's cheap and you get a lot of free storage for referring people.

You forgot to say "Tell em umafuckit sent you!".

Oh, fuck, you're right. Yes, tell them that in this manner and you get 5 gigs extra space. As a pleasing side-effect, so do I.

about three weeks ago
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A Third of Consumers Who Bought Wearable Devices Have Ditched Them

umafuckit Re:Gimmicks gonna gimmick. (180 comments)

The Wii is a console. I wouldn't call it a fad.

about three weeks ago
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Canonical Shutting Down Ubuntu One File Services

umafuckit Re:It's a pity (161 comments)

Try Copy. It's cheap and you get a lot of free storage for referring people.

about three weeks ago
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Department of Transportation Makes Rear View Cameras Mandatory

umafuckit Yeah right. (518 comments)

It's April 1st. You're not fooling anyone.

about three weeks ago
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UN Court: Japanese Whaling "Not Scientific"

umafuckit Re:Whaling bad, mass breeding cattle and pigs good (188 comments)

So, can someone explain to me why whaling is such a very bad thing the whole Western world has to get in an uproar - yet destroying huge portions of the rain forest and endangering species living in it to breed cattle or grow soy is ok?

Nobody is saying the former is bad and the latter is OK. It's not an either/or situation: both are bad and people are trying to do something about both. In theory, however, it should be easier to do something about the whales than something about the rainforests.

about three weeks ago
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UN Court: Japanese Whaling "Not Scientific"

umafuckit Re:Not Irony (188 comments)

Yes, of course, it's always been an obvious sham.

about three weeks ago
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How Facebook and Oculus Could Be a Great Combination

umafuckit Re:Perhaps this is insurance for FB (151 comments)

Yep, I'm being optimistic--I admit it. I don't think they'd be dumb enough to cripple the product by requiring FB integration. By my reading they haven't even done this with Instagram, so why would they do it with a gaming headset? That would be daft. Of course I could well be wrong, but given the absence of any real information as to what's going on it seems premature to write off the whole thing and just assume FB will fuck it all up. Let's see the product first.

about three weeks ago
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How Facebook and Oculus Could Be a Great Combination

umafuckit Re:Depends (151 comments)

Look, I don't like FB either but you're looking at this in a very one-sided way. As the article points out, Instagram and WhatsApp haven't been subsumed into FB in any obvious way following their acquisition. Go to the websites for those services and you won't see evidence of FB. With Instagram, for instance, it appears from the site that FB sharing is optional (I haven't used the App, but the website indicates this). So from past behaviour, FB haven't done an all-out assimilation of everything they've purchased. In addition, FB have contributed plenty to the opensource community. So there are good things there in addition to the crap they've pulled. Finally, they haven't done hardware before and so this very new territory. We know very little about what FB want to do with OR and, frankly, it doesn't look like they know either. It's quite plausible that they will be hands off. No 180 turns needed to envisage such a scenario.

about three weeks ago
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How Facebook and Oculus Could Be a Great Combination

umafuckit Re:Depends (151 comments)

What FB crap? There is no final product: you don't know what it'll be like yet. Probably it'll just have a FB logo and FB will have some pointless (to you or me) services that utilise VR. If you don't have a FB account and aren't interested in that stuff then likely you just skip it, plug the OR into your PC and game away. We don't know that OR will be used to "push" FB. We don't know anything yet.

about three weeks ago
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How Facebook and Oculus Could Be a Great Combination

umafuckit Perhaps this is insurance for FB (151 comments)

FB are now so established and enmeshed into other services that they are unlikely to suffer the fate of previous social networks. Nonetheless, it's hard to shake off the thought that users are fickle and FB's popularity may suddenly wane. Perhaps FB see it that way and they want to branch out into something more "solid", like hardware, or perhaps they've just decided that they have the cash and want to do something cool with it. Either way, it seems likely that this will mean a better Oculus arriving sooner. It might have a FB logo on it, and FB might have services for it. But so what? I don't have a FB account and if I bought an Occulus to play games then why would I worry about FB? I get why there's backlash but in reality, when you strip the emotion from it, it's likely a good thing for VR.

about three weeks ago
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Judge OKs Class Action Suit Against Apple For E-Book Price Fixing

umafuckit Re:Anybody should be able to open an e-book shop (88 comments)

There are precious few markets in which "anybody" can open a store and compete successfully against the big established players. Go out on the high street and you mostly see franchises and big-name stores. E-books are little different, but I do agree that there seems to be too much collusion between distributors like Amazon and the publishers. Diesel has just gone out of business and Sony are pulling out of e-readers: it's a tough market. Nonetheless, there are e-book distributors out there who aren't Amazon, Apple, or Google. e.g. BAM, ebooks.com, and Kobo. Of course there's also B&N. Plus there's a bunch of smaller outfits, such as Lulu, Smashwords, and Baen, which deal with indie or non-DRM books. So it's not quite true that the little guy is out of e-books. Of course the big 3 or 4 on-line companies are squeezing the little guys, but they're doing this in a range of markets, not just books. We have a general problem in this regard.

about three weeks ago

Submissions

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Community-sourced news site, soylentnews.org, goes live

umafuckit umafuckit writes  |  about 2 months ago

umafuckit (2980809) writes "soylentnews.org is the new way of taking the pulse of the nerd community. Soylentnews is a grassroots-based platform with the content feeds are powered by readers like you. The objective is to highlight news stories of general importance to everyone, but especially nerds. News about technology, art, science and politics: it's all there. Soylentnews is the new kid on the block and will adapt quickly to satisfy our community's needs and and push boundaries like never before. This is a real community site: no changes in format without a general consensus from the community. Stop by and see what you think of the freshly-launched site."

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