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Comment: Re:Can't they get anything right? (Score 1) 361

by Blancmange (#28370261) Attached to: Introducing the Warpship

I haven't played all of Star Control II yet, but I believe you're referring to the race who, if they were real, will one day be formerly known as the Ilwrath.

As Douglas Adams pointed out in The Restaurant at the End of the Universe, the ability to travel through time means for a multitude of temporal grammatical tenses.

Comment: Re:Molecular weight of oxygen (Score 1) 633

by Blancmange (#27640567) Attached to: Antarctic Ice Is Growing, Not Melting Away, At Davis Station

Snaller:

So what am I breathing here at ground level?

Um, I was taking the piss out of pipingguy's often-used and tiresome excuse for an argument, "Check out the molecular weight of CO2 sometime", which implies that he really does believes the gasses in the atmosphere are neatly stacked in layers, sorted by molecular weight.

Why some people choose to believe this is a topic worthy of a whole new thread.

Comment: Molecular weight of oxygen (Score 4, Informative) 633

by Blancmange (#27631983) Attached to: Antarctic Ice Is Growing, Not Melting Away, At Davis Station

I did. I also checked out the molecular weight of oxygen, nitrogen and argon. There's no way oxygen can exist anywhere near ground level. There, the air is made entirely of argon.

If you want to breathe oxygen, you'll have to go up several hundred metres. Unfortunately, it will be relatively pure, highly corrosive even to organic materials and a terrible fire risk. To be safe, you'll have to go up much higher in the atmospheric layer cake to the boundary between the oxygen and nitrogen layers.

Comment: Girls do not have "souls" (Score 1) 628

by Blancmange (#27365843) Attached to: Study Suggests Crabs Can Feel Pain

Since they have no "souls" (that is, a centre of consciousness), they cannot really suffer. They're just meat robots.

That's why it's fine to forcefully have sex with them (it's not rape when they're your own property). It's why it's fine to make them wear robot suits whenever they leave your house to do your shopping for you. They are as disposable as Christmas Puppies. They're just meat.

OK, I'll stop pretending to be a devout Muslim or a particularly devout Christian of Orange County[1]

What I'm getting at is the way that people often come up with convenient ways to justify their treatment of what they find convenient to torture, rape or kill.

Slashdot readers should take more notice of films like Zardoz[2]. "Oh, you can't equate their feelings with ours!"

---
    [1]They are _so_ miffed that marital rape became illegal in all 50 states that they have effectively re-legalised it (and acts of paedophilia, too!) in through marriages of convenience. Seventh degree marriages are fine in Orange County.
    [2]Zardoz is ostensibly about a bunch of people trapped in a malaise of artificial immortality, but it's really about cultural elitism. It's much like how Starship Troopers is ostensibly about alien bug-hunting, but is really about fascism.

Comment: I've damaged mine a little. (Score 1) 519

by Blancmange (#27351723) Attached to: Old-School Keyboard Makes Comeback of Sorts

The key spring for the numeric cluster is a bit sticky, probably from me picking up the keyboard and using it like a baseball bat on the desk in order to shake out the dandruff.

I'll get a blacksmith to look at it when I have the time. I hear that Model M springs are easy to rework.

I've worn out the G key plunger slightly, but I swapped it with "Scroll lock".

I've had it for six years. Not bad for a 1984-vintage keyboard for which I paid 3NZD at Supashed.

Those plsticky keyboards that come with computers, though, last about 7-10 days before my typing destroys their flimsy excuses for switches.

Funnily enough, I never have RSI/OOS problems.

Comment: Brilliant posters! (Score 1) 430

by Blancmange (#27337787) Attached to: German Police Raid Homes of Wikileaks.de Domain Owner

I'm seriously considering printing and laminating copies of those fear posters to use here in New Zealand. First I'll put the rubbish-fear poster on the side of my council wheelie bin.

Then I'll splash the fear-CCTV-watchers poster somewhere prominent in town (I gather there are 30 CCTV in Cathedral Square alone).

I'm more tempted than ever to add a reassuring poster to any traffic counter I see. "ATTENTION, VISITING BOSTONITES: This is not a roadside bomb. It is not even a Mooninite. It is a traffic counter. DO NOT BE AFRAID!"

I expect people to fall over in the streets laughing when they realise that the posters are more than mere derivatives of the propaganda posters in Terry Gilliam's Brazil.

Comment: Jeans don't last all that long for me. (Score 1) 876

by Blancmange (#26877773) Attached to: High Tech Misery In China

The seem to wear out at the crotch after only a year or two. My Utilikilts have proven to be far more durable.

You have to pay a little bit extra for someone of quality not made by slaves, but it's worth it in the long run.

BTW, I'm using a Model M I bought from Supashed (at the refuse station) for NZ$3. It's outlasted my Omnikey 101, though the numeric minus key is a bit stuffed after I banged the keyboard upside down on the desk like a cricket bat once too often, shaking the dandruff out. I take it apart and clean it evener it starts to look or feel grubby.

A Model M is nowhere as robust as a EMP hardened grenade-proof military keyboard[1] I once encountered or the great 7 kilogram cast iron 3278 terminal keyboard I used to use at work. It's good enough for me, though.

----
[1] It was sleek and tough like a broadsword. You could do a lot more than merely bludgeon someone to death with it.

Comment: Collective Retardation (Score 1) 1044

by Blancmange (#26538495) Attached to: 6 Pennsylvania Teens Face Child Porn Charges For Pics of Selves

Isn't "culture" just another word for collective moral or mental retardation?

Here in New Zealand, we have a "culture" of driving the heads of children through bedroom walls in order to teach them to have respect for authority.

It's what the child abusers and murderers call it, whenever they end up in court.

Education

Nonprofit Group Sends Filesharing Propaganda To Students 266

Posted by Soulskill
from the comics-without-comedy dept.
palegray.net writes "The National Center for State Courts, a nonprofit organization, has sent file-sharing propaganda to thousands of students. The supposedly 'educational' materials, presented in the form of a comic strip, are intended to frighten students with gross exaggerations of the legal consequences of sharing music online (lose your scholarship to college, go to jail for two years, and more). From the article: '"The Case of Internet Piracy," however, reads like the Recording Industry Association of America's public relations playbook: Download some songs, go to jail and lose your scholarship. Along the way, musicians will file onto the bread lines. "The purpose is basically to educate kids — middle school and high school-aged about how the justice system operates and about what really goes on in the courtroom as opposed to what you see on television," said Lorri Montgomery, the center's communications director.' I'm not encouraging anyone to break any laws, but this is ridiculous. What's truly discouraging is the fact that several judges appear to be in full support of this sort of 'education.' The propaganda material is available in PDF form, and it lists the judges and others involved in its creation. Wired's post has a summary of the story (which is good, since the story is awful), and Techdirt notes a couple of the legal inaccuracies.

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