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The Animal World Has Its Junkies, Too

vandan Re:O RLY? (250 comments)

Oh dear. You do realise that you're an animal, right? And your signature suggests that you don't believe in God. I'm trying to reconcile these two beliefs that you hold, and yet can't.

more than 3 years ago
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The Animal World Has Its Junkies, Too

vandan Re:Entheogens are our birthright... (250 comments)

I'm missing the 'like' button from facebook all of a sudden ;) Totally agree ...

more than 3 years ago
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The Animal World Has Its Junkies, Too

vandan Psychoactive users are not junkies (250 comments)

It's a common perception ... and totally wrong ... that psychoactive users are junkies. Far from it. I have participated in multiple voluntary studies with the Australian National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre, where they study recreational drugs ( E, LSD, etc ) ... and have asked them each time what they thought of my habits, and that of my peers. Each time they said the same thing ... that it was a pleasure to work with people who actually had their life together ... that the real 'junkies' use heroin, alcohol, cocain, etc ... and the recreational drug users, in contrast, are well in control of their activities, and leading productive lives. In fact I would go a step further and say that psychoactive drug users have their life together far more than the average person.

more than 3 years ago
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GNU/Linux and Enlightenment Running On a Fridge

vandan Re:Much as I love Linux .... (222 comments)

:) Was thinking something very similar, just as I came to your post.

more than 3 years ago
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IE9, FF4 Beta In Real-World Use Face-Off

vandan Intel Graphics? (358 comments)

The story doesn't mention the GPU in use, but it does mention it's an i7 processor. So I assume it's using an i965-class GPU. These aren't exactly known for speed or stability on linux. I believe FF4 uses Cairo, which in turn uses XRender, and my experience with integrated Intel GPUs and XRender is that pure software ( ie X on FBDev ) is faster. I would have liked to have seen a system used which could actually accelerate the drawing operations.

more than 3 years ago
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Conroy Still Hell-Bent On Internet Filter

vandan Re:Still depends on Fielding? (254 comments)

While I will rejoice in Fielding being dumped, I'm sceptical that Labor will backflip over this issue without being pressured. We'll see.

more than 3 years ago
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Transition Metal Catalysts Could Be Key To Origin of Life

vandan Re:The whole universe is alive (145 comments)

Wooot! Another insightful post on Slashdot. Maybe I should spend more time here? Yeah I agree completely ... the way we call organisms individuals, separate from their surroundings, is completely arbitrary. If you haven't already read them, you may be interested in 'Autopoiesis and Cognition' by HR Maturana, FJ Varela and 'Web of Life' by Fritjof Capra.

more than 3 years ago
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Transition Metal Catalysts Could Be Key To Origin of Life

vandan Re:The electro-dynamic field came first, of course (145 comments)

I agree with your attack on materialism, and also that Darwinists have an agenda as do Creationists. But instead of focusing on electromagnetic fields, which is itself inside the domain of the material, I think the source of life lies in a domain of organisation and thought ... one which 4-dimensional physics is enfolded in.

more than 3 years ago
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Teacher Asks Students To Plan a Terrorist Attack

vandan Re:I'm tired of this... (412 comments)

Wow ... an insightful post. This is slashdot, right?

more than 3 years ago
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Just One Out of 16 Hybrids Pays Back In Gas Savings

vandan Re:That's how the market is supposed to work. (762 comments)

We bought a Civic hybrid with 30,000kms on it. We paid exactly the same as we would have for other Civic models. We got the battery checked out - was in 'perfect' order. It uses about 5.5 l/100km in the city, which is considerably better than the other Civic models, which I expect would be getting around 7 or 8 l/100km. So for us it's making very good economic sense. I don't expect to be changing the battery any time soon - they're supposed to go 10 years in this model. Maybe you should check out 2nd-hand models in your analysis.

Other people have already commented on the hand-outs to big oil fouling up your whinging about subsidies to hybrid tech.

about 4 years ago
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A How-To Website For Australian Voters

vandan Re:It's actually 84 (158 comments)

One is reminded of that Churchill quote about democracy being the worst form of government ...

The problem is that Churchill was a racist, biggoted prick. If he lived in our times, he could have been charged with war crimes ( though of course like current politicians who commit war crimes, there is little chance that this would actually happen ).

about 4 years ago
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Google Defends Privacy Policies

vandan Re:Facebook? Bueller? (114 comments)

Precisely. Let's remember that it was Google who told the US government to take them to court before they'd hand over search query data. I'm not saying Google is perfect. But as the post above notes, Google collect data for the sole purpose of providing targeting data to their customers - advertisers. Worst-case scenario is that some advertisers have slightly more information on your browsing habits. This is far from the end of the world.

But you are spot on when you worry about the government getting their hands on this information. I can see problems for people discussing:
  - euthanasia
  - recreational drugs, including medical use, drug law reform, harm minimisation programs, etc
  - political activism
  - criticism of government
  - criticism of big business
  - workers' rights ... which are all quite valid topics, which ever side of the so-called 'great divide' you come down on.

more than 4 years ago
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Adding Some Spice To *nix Shell Scripts

vandan Gtk2-Perl (411 comments)

I really can't praise Gtk2-Perl enough. Using Glade to quickly build your GUI, and Perl to quickly build your logic, it's a knock-out combination. The end result looks just like a gnome application ( using Gtk2 ), and for 95% of cases, runs as fast as well. I liked it so much, I wrote some database classes, Gtk2::Ex::DBI and Gtk2::Ex::Datasheet::DBI ... see: http://entropy.homelinux.org/axis/.

more than 4 years ago
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Testing the Safety of Tasers On Meth-Addled Sheep

vandan Tasers are more lethal, not less lethal (253 comments)

The 'less lethal' argument is complete bullshit. The fact is that police are far more likely to use 'less' lethal weapons, on the assumption that there is much lower burden on them to prove the need for weapons use. There are many more situations completely out of the control of police that turn 'less' lethal weapons into 'completely' lethal weapons.

  - heart conditions, pacemakers etc ( yes, young people can have pacemakers )
  - pregnancy
  - short period of time since last taser assaults ( we've all seen videos of repeated taser assaults )

If police can't subdue people with their bare hands and training, then they shouldn't be police. Giving them so-called 'non' or 'less' lethal weapons only leads to more deaths due to a massive increase in the use of the weapons, combined with a very worrying deathrate ( hundreds of deaths per year according to Amnesty International ). As for police in the US where everyone has a gun ... I have no answer for that. Do whatever the hell you want over there. In sane countries where it's illegal to carry around lethal weapons, I expect the police to also be unarmed.

more than 4 years ago
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James Lovelock Suggests Suspending Democracy To Save the World

vandan Crackpot (865 comments)

This guy has lost the plot. First nuclear power as a way to save the planet. Now 'putting democracy on hold' to achieve the same goal.

Now, I'm under no illusions as to the state of our alleged democracy: we don't have one. We are wage slaves who delegate our power to representatives of the ruling class. But do we really want to be 'officially' handing over the keys like this?

Surely the only way to achieve the kind of world-wide change we need is a world-wide democratic revolution ( and no, I'm not talking about American / Western style democracy, but REAL democracy ). Bring on the TRULY democratic, one-world government!

more than 4 years ago
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Venezuela's Last Opposition TV Owner Arrested

vandan Lordy lord, it's not that bad (433 comments)

These TV station smart-asses have been openly advocating for Chavez to be assassinated. I'm sure if some 'independent' TV station started calling for President Obama's assassination, there would be some arrests over that too.

The problem is that Chavez is trying to implement some real social reforms, but the capitalists would very much prefer that not to happen. One of their weapons in the battle is these 'independent' TV stations, that are about as independent as Fox News.

Good riddance I say. There are enough far-right freak-shows with access to mass media already. Time to claw things back and give Chavez a chance to reform the country, like a majority of the population say they want.

more than 4 years ago
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Cellulosic Biofuel Finally Ready For the Road

vandan Re:Doesn't anyone realize that (355 comments)

I was wondering how long it would take before someone with intelligence posted to Slashdot. Unfortunately your solution doesn't fit in the pro-consumption market economy, or in the minds of the wages slaves conditioned to live in said environment.

more than 4 years ago
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Cellulosic Biofuel Finally Ready For the Road

vandan Re:Biofuels dont cause hunger (355 comments)

Dear AC, your logic applies equally well to the free market. Central planning alone will of course not feed people. You need central planning by democratic means. The examples you gave ( post-Lenin Soviet Union, and North Korea ) are central planning, but by particularly undemocratic dictatorships.

But nice try, Mr Free Market.

more than 4 years ago
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Cellulosic Biofuel Finally Ready For the Road

vandan Re:Late to the party? (355 comments)

Green lords? Homepage link? Signature? You're a nutcase mate. Either that, or on the payroll of a big oil co, or both.

more than 4 years ago
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When Will AI Surpass Human Intelligence?

vandan This assertion lacks intelligence (979 comments)

People making these outrageous claims are showing a fundamental lack of understanding of what intelligence actually is. Intelligence is inextricably linked to life and consciousness. It doesn't matter how many transistors you throw at 'artificial' intelligence, it's still just that: artificial. It has no intelligence, just as it has no life. It has a very fancy set of instructions that attempt to mimic some characteristics that humans identify as being of an 'intelligent' origin. There's a big difference. Added complexity will not bridge the gap.

more than 4 years ago

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