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Why Portland Should Have Kept Its Water, Urine and All

windwalker13th Re:Not Uncommon for Portland (332 comments)

I don't remember the exact details and I can't find the articles on the stupid website of the Oregonian but basically the process was sleazy. There was something about the way they awarded the contracts for the caping was inappropriate. The issue that I think pissed off the people trying to keep the reservoirs uncovered was that the Portland Water Bureau didn't bother filing the paperwork for an exemption from the Department of Homeland Security which then forced the City of Portland to cap/discontinue use of the open air reservoirs. Rochester NY which has the same kind of open air reservoirs applied for and was granted exemptions to keep their open air reservoirs. Yet in Portland despite the outcry to keep the reservoirs uncovered, didn't bother filing the paperwork to keep that option open.

about 9 months ago

Why Portland Should Have Kept Its Water, Urine and All

windwalker13th Not Uncommon for Portland (332 comments)

This is not the first time that Portland has emptied a reservoir. This is the only time that it has made national news. One of the times that they drained the reservoir was for when somebody was attempting to pee in it and it was unclear if the intoxicated individual had actually urinated into the reservoir.

The reservoirs in Portland are a bit of a contentious subject. We Portlanders greatly appreciate our open air reservoirs however the City Water Bureau does not. Despite a large public outcry to keep our open air reservoirs our water department despite saying that they were working to keep our reservoirs, did not file for a waiver from the department of homeland security to keep the reservoirs open air. While most Portlanders recognize the importance of controlling access to our water supply we wish that the water department listened to public comment more and acted less like a dictator.

about 9 months ago

Massachusetts Court Says 'Upskirt' Photos Are Legal

windwalker13th Your Kids Soccer Game (519 comments)

<quote><p>Write a law to make it illegal to photograph anyone without their written consent, or in the case of a government agency a warrant.</p><p>it solves the upskirt issue, the paparazzi problem, and ends those annoying red light cameras.</p></quote>

So you want to take a picture of your son/daughter playing soccer . . . .. you will now need to get every other parent guardians signature just incase you accidentally take a picture of their child.

However one might consider this that the pictures were taken with the intent to disseminate. Unless they are disseminated without any profit being made then they are being used for commercial purpose. Hence if they are on a upskirt website they are being used for commercial purpose because the owners of those sites make revenue from adds by providing content. However I'm not sure how well his would actually stand up.

about a year ago

Majority of Young American Adults Think Astrology Is a Science

windwalker13th Not Surprising (625 comments)

When students are called upon to learn creationism in science class, we teach them that science does not need to be based on fact just belief. Why should students not make the logical analogy "evolution is to creationism as behavior psychology is to astrology" and that all are science. With politicians insisting that non-testable theories be taught as fact in science classes why should our students not assume that astrology is also a science?

about a year ago

Fearing Government Surveillance, US Journalists Are Self-Censoring

windwalker13th Censorship and Journalism (376 comments)

As one editor of the New York Times once said,

"The New York Times is not 'All the News That's Fit to Print' but all the news 5 people in a room think is fit to print."

So while not censorship the capital business model under which these papers are run also semi dictates their content. For example if the editors of the paper think an article is going to disturb their advertisers too much and make them pull out, then the article won't be run. Is this censorship, no just self interest. The freedom of the press is tied to profit from publishing the material. If the US government suddenly makes it much more complicated for them to do reporting and investigating then as business they won't be interested in actually covering those stories. The freedom of the press is only freedom so long as they continue to make money and be able to continue printing.

about a year ago

Most silent movies have now been lost

windwalker13th 14% in Original Format (4 comments)

Ok because you lack a link in this post let me possibly put this into a little perspective. Original format could potentially mean a lot of different things in this context. It could mean that they still have original prints from the first run of printing, the films on actual film, the films themselves.....

To give you an idea each 35mm picture holds roughly the same quality as a 20 megapixel picture (this is just rough it depends on film grain and such). So given that movies are supposed to be played at 24fps that adds up to a lot of data real quick. Although that said most of the films were probably on 16mm film but that still is a lot of data. Most films when transferred to digital are not transferred at anywhere near that high of a quality. A lot of times they are being transferred at 640x480 maybe high deff if we are lucky now. So there is a quality degradation in the transfer to digital medium. That said as of a couple of years ago, Hollywood was still preserving films on actual film, even digital films were being printed to film to be archived because it was soo much cheaper then paying for servers and techs and electricity to store the films digitally.

Also film from 1930 is probably falling apart by now because the film was not as stable, even if it was stored in an air conditioned vault it probably is falling apart or very delicate and in desperate need of restoration by now so many of the original format may be gone just because the film disintegrated.

about a year ago

Could We "Wikify" Scholarly Canons?

windwalker13th From a Student Perspective (63 comments)

As a student in the sciences, the most annoying thing is when you are writing a paper and looking for sources you find this great journal article for a source and it only costs $45 to see more then the abstract. This article is essential for your paper so first you try through your library, then you look on the web, then you call your friend at a different college and see if they have access to it. I've never met a student that has paid up front for a journal article.

While I am all for having science knowledge be free, somebody has to edit and layout and do a quick check of the articles to make sure they are making sense, and somebody does have to host the articles and provide the delivery system. I had a friend who worked for a publisher and it was her job to edit journal articles and she was astounded and the poor writing that was submitted and confided that some articles didn't get published because they were so poorly written. What does need to happen though is Publishers need to realize that in this modern age they need a different distribution framework. If you take the approach of netflix and make every journal article available for a small price to individual subscribers everybody would sign up. In one state Instead of having say 10 individual libraries paying 5000 each, you have 60,000 students paying $30 each. There is still a way to make money from this they just need to realize that they need to modernize their distribution methods.

Bottom line, the idea of having only certain articles get published in special prestigious journals because of their significance is still a good idea. However maybe in this future age of article accessibility having articles are voted to be part of a collection based on how often they are cited would be a better indication of how "prestigious" an article is and how well it reflects on the author.

about a year ago

Why Organic Chemistry Is So Difficult For Pre-Med Students

windwalker13th Pre-Med Orgo Requirement (279 comments)

After having talked to numerous doctors on whom have been part of admission selection committees for different medical schools this is the consensus I have reached as to why Orgo is required for medschool. Orgoanic chemistry is looked at as a weed out class. In particular, they believe that good grades from second semester (quarter 2,3) in Orgo prove the ability of the student to be able to solve complex problems because the later part of most organic chemistry courses focus on synthesis. They believe that good grades in second semester orgo will translate into a doctors ability to see the long term solution and that good grades are indicative of an ability to plan a multistep process for patient recovery.

about a year ago

Home Secretary Requests Fingerprint-Activated iPods

windwalker13th Finally we can say good bye to country (262 comments)

Well now that we have a way, lets officially blacklist that country singer X. Arrest everybody that has X on their iPod!

more than 7 years ago



Evolution in Science Textbooks for Texas Schools

windwalker13th windwalker13th writes  |  about a year ago

windwalker13th (954412) writes "Recently the New York Times ran an article highlighting the pull that a State Board in Texas holds over that state and rest of the Nation. Because of the unique way in which Texas picks school textbooks (purchasing large volumes of textbooks at once to be used for the next decade) publishers pander to this board to get their books approved. The board currently holds several members (6 of 28 who are known to reject evolution) who hold creationist views and actively work to ensure that the science textbooks do not use as strong language or must include "critical thinking" about possible alternate explanations for evolution. The 'Theory of Evolution' as currently set forth while a "theory" is more FACT/LAW (Like Newtown’s Three Laws of Motion). So while our exact understanding of humans origins, if we evolved from monkeys as most evidence indicate or, were created a little while ago on the geological time frame by an all knowing creator, or were a planet seeded by aliens is still somewhat up for debate evolution is not. What can we as a society do to ensure that K-12 schools are teaching our kids that the change in features of Galapagos finches is the result of natural selection driven by changing environmental conditions and the process of evolution?"
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