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Comment: Re:Discovered for myself a few weeks ago... (Score 2, Interesting) 165

by HappySmileMan (#30981240) Attached to: The Web Way To Learn a Language

Working on learning Irish myself, spent over ten years learning it in school and never put any effort in, now I'm regretting it just months after I've finished :P.
Worst part about these languages is the difficulty of finding people to talk with in them IMO, it seems easier to find a fluent Spanish/French/German in Ireland than an Irish speaker.

Comment: Re:Water Filters? Hello? (Score 2, Informative) 211

by HappySmileMan (#30961994) Attached to: Fertilizer Dump Spoils Intel's Pure Water

Places with "low taxes" either:

  1. Have a higher, hidden tax burden (like southern US states with their high, regressive sales taxes)
  2. Have materially lower living standards (like Ireland)

You can't get a modern civilization for pennies on the dollar.

Ireland doesn't have much lower taxes than elsewhere, income tax and VAT are quite average I believe, there's a very high tax on alcohol and cigarettes (Seriously, look at the prices of these here if you don't believe me, I doubt you'll find somewhere more expensive to drink and smoke in without some effort), as is, IIRC, tax on petrol.
It's only really corporations that pay low tax, and it's made up for in many ways.

Also lower living standards? What the fuck comes to your mind when you think of Ireland, people living in mud houses rationing their years supply of potatoes and poitín?
I'm sitting here in an apartment 50% paid for by the government, getting free 3rd level education (apart from a registration fee, which gets refunded to me by the government), and just waiting for my second of 3 cheques for over €1,000 from the government for simply going to college while not being rich.
By what definition is this "lower living standards"?

Comment: Re:Water Filters? Hello? (Score 4, Insightful) 211

by HappySmileMan (#30960938) Attached to: Fertilizer Dump Spoils Intel's Pure Water

I was in this very plant a year or two ago and seem to recall them saying that not even filtering was good enough, they actually had to distill the water they got because filtering won't remove all impurities (enough for most practical purposes, but I think the reason they need absolutely pure is because pure H2O doesn't conduct electricity, but the slightest impurity will).

I find it very hard to believe this same plant shut down because they didn't consider the possibility of their water supply (completely outdoors and unguarded) being contaminated somehow.

Comment: Re:Linus (Score 1) 909

by HappySmileMan (#28874099) Attached to: Alan Cox Quits As Linux TTY Maintainer — "I've Had Enough"

Being obviously smarter than those around you is, well, a major cause of huge ego syndrome.

Actually this has been studied, look up the "Downing effect" and you'll find that studies have shown that most intelligent people are likely to under-estimate their own intelligence, and most unintelligent people are likely to think that they're very smart.

Same goes for specific fields, people who do well and people who think they're great are usually not the same people.
I've seen this myself when doing exams to be honest.
People who come out of exams thinking they've aced it often end up getting worse marks than the people who came out worrying.

Comment: Re:Will at be enforced fairly? (Score 2) 1376

by HappySmileMan (#28759921) Attached to: Ireland Criminalizes Blasphemy

The state religion is Catholicism

No, it's not, the constitution has been amended to remove all references to Catholicism as far as I know and it recognises many religions.

Although unofficially I guess Catholicism is the main religion (for example my school is supposedly non-denominational but we were still required to go to Mass at least once a year on school time, held by the local priest in the Gym), Catholicism isn't granted any legal benefits by the constitution or any laws, it's just biased judges you'd have to worry about I guess.

Comment: Re:Nobody expects... (Score 1) 1376

by HappySmileMan (#28759819) Attached to: Ireland Criminalizes Blasphemy

The Life of Brian was banned in Ireland when it came out too. For blasphemy.
Although it wasn't technically a legal thing, the Film censors commision refused to rate it and it's illegal to sell unrated films in Ireland, though I think it's only happened with about 9 or 10 films ever.

Also Blasphemy is banned by the Irish constitution, so in a sense it was always illegal, it was just never really enforced. This bill as far as I know simply sets a maximum fine and formally defines blasphemy, so in a way it can actually be considered less restrictive than it was before.
Though the problem is that very few people knew blasphemy was illegal and it was never enforced, so while this bill may make it less likely for an act to be considered blasphemy, it's a much more well known and defined law, so it's more likely someone will be charged and found guilty.

Comment: Re:God hates censorship. (Score 1) 1376

by HappySmileMan (#28759635) Attached to: Ireland Criminalizes Blasphemy

Actually it's no longer illegal to give information about it, and I think it's legal to go abroad for an abortion since about a decade ago.

Also some girl once won the right to have an abortion by threatening to kill herself if she had to go through with the pregnancy after being raped, because it's allowed if the mother's life is in danger and the judge took her threat seriously.
I don't think the judges and government are as opposed to abortion as many people think, it's just that it can't be legalised without a referendum, and the last 2 times that's been tried it's been defeated, so you can blame the voting public.

Comment: Re:It's so very odd..... (Score 2, Informative) 1376

by HappySmileMan (#28759159) Attached to: Ireland Criminalizes Blasphemy

My family background is Scots-Irish, so that means we got kicked out of two perfectly good countries (including, ironically, Ireland) because our particular brand of "Bible-thumping" wasn't compatible with what others believed in.

Actually Ireland was part of Great Britain until 1922, so really it was British law kicking them out of both countries, when they left one they shouldn't have gone to somewhere else in Great Britain for that reason.
The Irish weren't immune to this nor were they the ones carrying it out, in fact there were many priests imprisoned or executed for teaching catholicism (and the Irish language).

Comment: Re:"Support"? (Score 1) 392

by HappySmileMan (#28622467) Attached to: HTML 5 should support ...

While I can certainly see the merits of a "blessed" codec for HTML5, I think that the endorsement of a particular codec is bad engineering practice, unless the goal of HTML5 is "presentation of video" (which as far as I understand it, isn't).

It's goal is to present modern webpages, webpages which increasingly rely on video, for better or for worse, specifying an open codec would ensure that users don't get left out due to using the wrong browser/OS/media player, as happens frequently now.

HTML4 has been around for a long time, and I think this is partly because it is open and flexible, and does not tie anyone to any particular implementation of anything. For the most part, it's done a nice job distinguishing what you must have, but not what you can have.

But videos are now becoming more of a "must have" than a "can have" to many people. This would make it possible for the average user (as in, someone who has no idea what a "codec" is, or for that matter, what "flash" is) to watch videos without havign to worry about getting codecs or flash, just install the browser and you have support for one or two standard formats.

I'm not saying OGG should be the only format used, or that browsers shouldn't rely on OS libraries or anything, which many people seem to think is being argued, but it'd be nice to have the assurances that browsers will always support at least the one open format, so web designers can use that and not worry about their users not supporting it.

Comment: Re:Use the OS video libraries (Score 2, Interesting) 392

by HappySmileMan (#28621889) Attached to: HTML 5 should support ...

In Firefox 3.5 you can right click on the video and select "Save video as..." if you'd prefer that to streaming.
And since it's linking straight to the video file it'd be trivial to download the video anyway, even if the browser doesn't allow it you can simply get the URL straight to the video by viewing page source and then add to a download manager.

User hostile.

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