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Comment: Doesn't matter. I block all of Ukraine anyway. (Score 3, Interesting) 303

by Dr. Manhattan (#46756011) Attached to: Is Crimea In Russia? Internet Companies Have Different Answers
Set up a website to support my Android app, and after a couple months I started getting a flood of referrer spam filling up my logs. All of it from a couple dozen different netblocks in the Ukraine. I tried a couple different techniques to filter out the bad guys, but at this point I just toss all the netblocks into the reject pile in my htaccess file.

Does anyone actually get legitimate traffic from the Ukraine anyway?

Sure, the real-world violence and power struggles are sad. But from an internet perspective, I have a hard time seeing much to care about.

Comment: Re:Almost certainly "the result of socialization" (Score 2) 384

by Dr. Manhattan (#46454429) Attached to: Men And Women Think Women Are Bad At Basic Math

Yes, but more women take the SAT than men, and yet the ratio of perfect math scores is 2:1 in favor of the men or 2.5:1 after adjusting for the fact that more women taken the test.

Performance in the SAT is not uncorrelated with effort put forth in the math classes prior to the test. That's a variable that's strongly influenced by socialization.

Given the example of things like chess, it would seem that socialization should probably be the default explanation until and unless evidence of other explanations comes to light.

Comment: Almost certainly "the result of socialization" (Score 1) 384

by Dr. Manhattan (#46453847) Attached to: Men And Women Think Women Are Bad At Basic Math
Compare with women and chess.

The model revealed that the greater proportion of male chess players accounts for a whopping 96% of the difference in ability between the two genders at the highest level of play. If more women took up chess, you’d see that difference close substantially. ... So why are there so few female chess grandmasters? Because fewer women play chess. It’s that simple. This overlooked fact accounts for so much of the observable differences that other possible explanations, be they biological, cultural or environmental, are just fighting for scraps at the table.

Comment: Re:Um, no, it's not just about humans. (Score 1) 665

by Dr. Manhattan (#46237381) Attached to: South Carolina Education Committee Removes Evolution From Standards

The only issue I see is that you use too much italic and it makes you look like a wuss.

And your opinion of me is what I care about most, of course. I'm just crushed. :-)

Also I tried to read the articles you linked, but for the most part they suck.

Actually having to process a "flood of boring information" is too challenging or something? Well... okay, then.

I guess you provided that article to make it clear that people with a Ph.d. are competent only if they agree with your specific vision of the world.

I was interested to see how you'd process it. And yes, unfortunately, it went about like I suspected it would. There's a reason why there aren't any flood geologists in the oil industry.

Finding oil is a very high-stakes issue for oil companies. Literally trillions of dollars are riding on it. When they look for the most likely spots to drill, do they use Flood geology, or mainstream? Which one actually delivers the goods?

Let's assume the Earth is only a few thousand years old. Where did the oil come from? Was it created in the ground with the rest of the Earth? If so, is there a way to predict where it might be found? Or perhaps it really did form from plankton (with a few plants and dinosaurs), but about 10,000 times faster than any chemist believes it could in those conditions? Any way you look at it, a young Earth and a Flood would imply some very interesting scientific questions to ask, some interesting (and potentially extremely valuable) research programs to start. How come nobody's actually pursuing such research programs?

Why don't creationists put together an investment fund, where people pay in and the stake is used as venture capital for things like oil and mineral rights? If "Flood geology" is really a better theory, then it should make better predictions about where raw materials are than standard geology does. The profits from such a venture could pay for a lot of evangelism. Why isn't anyone making money doing this? (I can suggest one possibility...)

Comment: Zero utility (Score 1) 665

by Dr. Manhattan (#46228033) Attached to: South Carolina Education Committee Removes Evolution From Standards
To both me and gweihir below, your comments both boil down to, "You're wrong!" (Though if we include tone, perhaps it should be "Nyah-nyah, you're wrong, sillybutt!") Even if you're correct about either of us being wrong, absent the slightest argument or indication why we're wrong, I can't see why I should care about your contention.

Comment: Um, no, it's not just about humans. (Score 1) 665

by Dr. Manhattan (#46227649) Attached to: South Carolina Education Committee Removes Evolution From Standards
Well, sure, the creationists primarily care about humans being created by a supernatural deity, sure. The problem is that, to make that work, they have to make a complete hash of pretty much every branch of science - not just biology, but relativity, quantum mechanics, chemistry, geology, etc.

In order to preserve their cherished notions about the "origin of mankind", creationists screw up pretty much everything about science. That's the "issue" you're not seeing.

Comment: "Theory" does not equal "Hunch" in science (Score 4, Insightful) 665

by Dr. Manhattan (#46221123) Attached to: South Carolina Education Committee Removes Evolution From Standards
Creationism is not a scientific theory. A scientific theory not only ties together a wide range of observations, it makes testable predictions that have gone on to be tested and verified. In science, 'hypothesis' is closest to what people commonly mean by the word 'theory'. For example, it's still the "Germ Theory of Disease" in science, but that's been, er, rather thorougly confirmed.

Comment: Re:law of gravity (Score 1) 665

by Dr. Manhattan (#46220629) Attached to: South Carolina Education Committee Removes Evolution From Standards
Actually, its the Theory of General Relativity that accounts for the observations. Same as the Germ Theory of Disease that account for a huge fraction of observed illness. A scientific theory is not a "hunch", "guess", or "notion". It ties together a huge number of observations and makes testable predictions that have overwhelmingly been tested and turned out to be correct.

BTW, that's the case with the Theory of Evolution. Here's my favorite example. (Some actual math here.) Interestingly, we know the Tree of Life with greater prescision than we know the gravitational constant G!

Comment: Re:It's not a debate (Score 1) 593

by Dr. Manhattan (#46154387) Attached to: Watch Bill Nye and Ken Ham Clash Over Creationism Live
So the advantage to "extemporaneous expression" is... if you can make a correct case, you can make it extemporaneously?

That doesn't work. Verbal debates are stunts. They allow no time for review, or for detailed examination of points raised. Which is one reason why creationists love them - they invented the Gish Gallop.

Comment: I wonder... a time machine and a NetBSD install (Score 3, Interesting) 154

by Dr. Manhattan (#46058943) Attached to: Apple Macintosh Turns 30
A/UX was indeed expensive. But even the early Macs could be decent Unix machines, as time (and open source a decade or more later) proved. The SE/30 was an incredible machine - able to take up to 128MB of RAM back when 'standard' was 1MB or less! Mine has seen lots of use as my piddly little home webserver.

Comment: Not taking DNA, allegedly (Score 4, Informative) 562

by Dr. Manhattan (#45729223) Attached to: Police Pull Over More Drivers For DNA Tests
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has been doing these "studies" for a while. Here's some details on the 'pilot study': http://www.nhtsa.gov/people/injury/research/pub/HS810704/pages/ExecSummary.html

http://www.pire.org/topiclist2.asp?cms=63

They don't stop everybody, they stop, say, every third car. And they use high-pressure sales techniques to try to get "biological samples". But they actually don't arrest people they find impaired; they try to arrange transportation for them. And they don't claim to actually collect or register DNA, just the presence of drugs. I don't think that makes it right, but let's at least be accurate about what they're doing.

More information and links to past examples of these "studies":

http://www.politechbot.com/2007/09/21/colorado-sheriff-creates/

Machines certainly can solve problems, store information, correlate, and play games -- but not with pleasure. -- Leo Rosten

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