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Comment From an unnamed Oxford lecturer (Score 2) 396

"nothing that you will learn in the course of your studies will be of the slightest use to you in after life â" save only this â" that if you work hard and intelligently you should be able to detect when a man is talking rot, and that, in my view is the main, if not the sole purpose of education"

Comment Re:Nothing New (Score 3, Insightful) 477

StormReaver is right, this is nothing new. I ran into some remarkably foul examples on Usenet in the '80s.

Managing a forum is one of the most challenging jobs I have ever had. One tool that is more powerful than it appears is setting a good example. If the moderators are frequent posters they can set a tone for the place. Then the jerks will be the exceptions. A positive feedback loop begins when good people are willing to stay and they create a space where more good people want to hang out.

Leave the jerks in place and it's a down-spiral to Lord of the Flies.

Comment Re:Do not push this button (Score 2) 192

Thesupraman has everything right and I'm just filling in background.

What makes a radioisotope dangerous is
1. A long enough half-life that it is still around when the plume reaches its first victims
2. A short enough half-life to be intensely radioactive.
3. A tendency to get stuck in the body by looking like something the body normally uses. Strontium-90 mimics calcium. Iodine is iodine.

I've seen potassium iodide in mail order catalogs.

Comment Hotline numbers and other resources (Score 4, Informative) 381

US: 1-800-273-8255 is a 24/7 suicide prevention hotline, which also advises people dealing with a suicidal loved one or friend.

http://www.suicide.org/interna...

For US active duty military and veterans:
Veteran's Crisis Line:
1800-273-8255
Press 1
or text 838255

confidential chat available at: www.veteranscrisisline.net

Specifically for support of trans* people, http://www.translifeline.org/ has a US hotline number +18775658860 and a Canadian toll-free number +18773306366.

For LGBT teenagers and young adults, http://www.thetrevorproject.or.... They also have a hotline number, 866-488-7386.

If you're a friend or bystander, these are relevant.
Suicide threats on social media:
http://www.suicidepreventionli...
If you're in the US this is a guide to reaching emergency services outside your own area: http://firstaid.about.com/od/c...
Immediate steps you can take: http://www.helpguide.org/artic...

Comment Re:Justice (Score 2) 99

That depends on whose version of the incident response costs is true.

The defense as I understand it says it was a matter of clicking revert and took less time than scrubbing out graffiti.

The prosecution claims the cost to the victim was 333 hours. On the other hand they included some response work to different incidents for which he had not been on trial.

Comment Re:I fail to see the problem here (Score 1) 93

Burdell has pointed out the real story.

"The search warrant seeks to have Microsoft â" which owns Skype â" provide the government with logs and the content of conversations and written messages made on Ciccoloâ(TM)s account, as well as passwords."

If Microsoft is in fact recording the content of Skype conversations, that really is news for nerds.

Comment Re:Where do inmates get money for calls? (Score 1) 197

Inmates have small accounts with the facility which they can feed from their 12-42 cent/hour jobs, or, if they're fortunate, with gifts from friends on the outside.
They can spend the money on phone calls or items from the prison commissary, for example toothpaste, stamps, and vitamins.
The last time I looked, the Federal system was charging inmates 6 cents per minute to make _collect_ calls. In other words, to talk to your children for five minutes, you'd have to work two and a half hours at one of the entry-level jobs, or most of an hour at a skilled trade.

Comment Re:This is evil, and incompetence at so many level (Score 1) 197

Is it corruption if the money goes to the institution and not into the administrator's pockets? The firms that gouge prisoners offer "facility commissions" to share their revenue with the prisons.
JPay has been reported to entertain wardens lavishly, but I haven't heard of actual bribery.

Comment PCI DSS is a mixed bag (Score 1) 101

At its best it's prescriptive and incorporates some sound practices. At its worst, it's as bad as you say.

At least one cynical person has suspected it's all just a way for the card issuers to shift liability to merchants ("Your Honor, we will show the defendant was out of compliance with the following vague language ...").

At least it's better than HIPAA but that's setting the bar pretty low.

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