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Comment: Re:Idiots keeping us safe, it seems (Score 1) 1059

"Why shouldn't we provoke them?"

Really? You certainly cannot call yourself a Christian with that attitude.

I do not because I am not. I am a freethinker and a liberal.

Why is it ok to bait Muslims but we have laws against baiting other groups to include racial (go ahead, host a competition to see who can spray paint the word "NIGGER" on a wall in the biggest letters), and even homosexuals

Are you living in America or Europe? It is not illegal to spray paint the word "NIGGER" or "FAG" on a wall you own. I would not defend any such infringement of free speech, and I think the arrest of Dieudonne following the Charlie Hebdo attacks was a travesty.

"We provoke them, they try to murder us, we kill them first."

That makes you a murderer, one who acts with pre-meditation and lures the victim into a compromised condition.

The fascist assholes who want me to obey their interpretation sharia are not victims, and fuck you for implying that they are. Plenty of moderate Muslims will say that there is nothing wrong with drawing the prophet, many of them receive death threats for saying so. They are the victims. The people in body armor trying to shoot cartoonists are not victims.

Civilization starts with civil behavior. What you advocate is called barbarism, most of us are well past that but, meh, to each knuckle-dragger his own.

What I advocate is identical to Gandhi's strategy for fighting the British. Hundreds (or thousands, I forget) died because he advocated disobeying the British's shitty, immoral rules on salt taxation. This helped keep the issue of British barbarity in the spotlight--other, non-evil Britons saw this and eventually enough of them sided with the Indians that the conflict was decided in their favor.

But I guess your interpretation is valid too. I guess the schoolgirls willing to risk their lives defying local interpretations of sharia by obtaining an education are merely "knuckle-draggers", along with all of the armed guards willing to protect them against theocratic fascists.

Comment: Re:A useful link for all of ya ... (Score 1) 1059

Hint: mockery and blasphemy is a HUGE part of modern American culture.

It's tempered by the maxim that you never punch down.

Two of the 9/11 hijackers had PhDs from western institutions. The rest had all attended college and (IIRC) most had degrees. "Jihadi John", the ISIS guy who was personally cutting off the heads of aid workers, had a career in computer science. Osama bin Laden was a millionaire. The men in charge of Saudi Arabia's Wahhabi nightmare are extremely wealthy.

I am poor, and I would like to make fun of these rich fascist assholes. But no, you say I shouldn't do so because these evil men and their beliefs are representative of all of the poor Muslims in the nation.

So, that's what I have to say about "punching down", but there is another point to be made here: There are moderate Muslims (along with some non-moderate Shias) who do not have a problem with picturing the prophet. But no, their beliefs do not matter to you--only the extremist belief that infidels should obey parts of the sharia matter. If the extremist interpretation really is much, much more popular than the moderate interpretation of Islam. that is a problem with Islam as it is commonly practiced, full stop. If the moderate interpretation isn't uncommon, then you are guilty of not only the soft bigotry of low expectations, but you are also ignoring and turning your back on the people who suffer the most from Islamic extremism--non-extremist Muslims.

Comment: Re:A useful link for all of ya ... (Score 1) 1059

In this case, the man who got shot in the ankle is a victim. The people who had to duck and run for their lives are also victims. The two gunmen wearing body armor who were upset that the infidels didn't want to follow sharia's laws on blasphemy and idolatry are not victims.

Comment: Re:nonsense (Score 1) 458

by TWX (#49633477) Attached to: The Medical Bill Mystery
I suspect that if the facility handled ALL billing (ie, no separate bills from doctors or nurse practitioners or others) that it would help a lot. It would make it a lot harder to be double-billed, and it would probably help prevent every resident looking to make extra dough from popping in to say hello so that they could bill for the time.

Comment: Re:Why do companies keep thinking people *want* th (Score 1) 87

by TWX (#49633411) Attached to: Ubuntu May Beat Windows 10 To Phone-PC Convergence After All
Years ago I had a laptop that could be effectively turned into a portable hard disk drive depending on some weird keystrokes at boot-time. I can't remember exactly how it worked now (but I think it was Firewire) but I had considered building a diskless desktop computer that the laptop would dock into, where the desktop was orders of magnitude more powerful, so the desktop would boot from the laptop's disk.

To make this happen I was going to use Linux, as Windows would have thrown a bitch-fit over the differences in architecture and chipset. Never got around to it before the laptop was hopelessly obsolete and newer ones didn't have the feature anymore.

I could see a dock with all of the accessories that someone would want in a desktop that has storage to mirror the phone's contents in the event the phone is broken or gone, but only if it's not tied to a single model of phone.

Comment: Re:Sort-of-worked. (Score 2) 49

by Bruce Perens (#49633129) Attached to: SpaceX Launch Abort Test Successful

What I am getting from the videos is that this test was a success but that there was indeed an engine failure and the system recovered from it successfully by throttling off the opposing engine. There was less Delta-V than expected, max altitude was lower than expected, downrange was lower than expected, and that tumble after trunk jettison and during drogue deploy looked like it would have been uncomfortable for crew.

This is the second time that SpaceX has had an engine failure and recovered from it. They get points for not killing the theoretical crew either time. There will be work to do. It's to be expected, this is rocket science.

It sounds to me like the launch engineers were rattled by the short downrange and the launch director had to rein them in.

Comment: You're going to have your Windows RT and LIKE IT. (Score 2) 87

by xeno (#49632835) Attached to: Ubuntu May Beat Windows 10 To Phone-PC Convergence After All

So.... really, how is this different from Windows RT leftovers, warmed up and plonked onto a phone a la Atrix as mentioned above?

It's got all the overhead of Windows but in a walled garden, etc etc. As before, what's the compelling advantage versus Android (which is faster, less costly, runs everywhere) or iOS (more pretty, more apps, and reliably walled-in)? It seems like they're beating the wall with their collective head.

More pointedly, the scraps left between the two big players in mobile aren't enough to create a success condition for Windows Phone 10, UNLESS somehow Microsoft fixes all the hassles with syncing enterprise AD accounts with consumer-level Microsoft accounts, AND all those Fortune 1000 companies with their own cloud implementation plans abruptly change their security policies to allow confidential documents to transit MS cloud services under consumer msft accounts (e.g. do phone buyers allow an employer to have complete control of their personal phone aka Blackberry, or carry two phones). Unlikely on all fronts. They can build it, but who's gonna come?

Comment: Re:Science gets Smarter (Score 2) 181

by TWX (#49632537) Attached to: 17-Year-Old Radio Astronomy Mystery Traced Back To Kitchen Microwave
It's my observation that many who become masters of one field are usually below average in several others. I've even known people with PhD degrees in work that requires a field component (paleo, anthro, geo, archeo) that have trouble actually operating in the field, like maintaining a safe distance driving off-road and not ditching the truck.

The best practice is to assume that they're experts in only their field, and to simply not judge in others. Though in this instance, you'd think that since they work with equipment that receives microwaves, and they're using a consumer appliance that emits microwaves that's even called a microwave, that they'd have figured that putting a microwave appliance in any proximity to the microwave receiver would be a bad idea.

Comment: Re:Meh (Score 2) 299

by TWX (#49632197) Attached to: Why Was Linux the Kernel That Succeeded?
A friend of mine stared playing with FreeBSD, I started playing with Linux that I got on some CDs.

We both had 486s. He found that he had better hardware support in Linux than BSD, so he switched to Linux.

The early kernel compliation process (at least as far back as 2.0.0) was relatively friendly. One could use a text-based menu system that worked similarly to how the text-driven installation process for Debian works now, to pick the hardware to support, to pick if the kernel was to be modular or monolithic, and to pick architecture. This allowed novices to customize their computers even when they had no programming knowledge. It also helped that most distributions at the time packed competing projects in such that one could choose which windowmanager and could change between them relatively easily if one wanted to experiment.

I think it really was ease of access for someone relatively computer savvy. It also helped that UNIX books (like UNIX in a Nutshell) applied too, so there was a lot of good documentation that worked for Linux too.

Comment: Re:Libertarians are to the right of Republicans (Score 3, Insightful) 227

Authoritarians, of both the "left" and "right" wings, love to use government force. The authoritarian-libertarian axis is completely unrepresented in the left-right political spectrum.

Almost all of the politicians in DC are somewhat, to extremely, authoritarian. Most citizens are considerably less authoritarian than our politicians and many citizens are very libertarian. As long as everybody is totally obsessed with the left-right dichotomy, though, and assumed that the other wing embodied authoritarianism, we'll keep getting more and more authoritarians in our system.

Comment: Re:Lost Momentum? (Score 2) 69

by chihowa (#49631885) Attached to: Oculus Rift Launching In Q1 2016

They also manufactured their competition by announcing so early. Instead of being the first to market, they're going to be Johnny-come-lately to a market segment that they carved out (at least for this iteration of VR).

Their competition gets to ride along on the hype that Occulus pumped out and if the competition fouls up the implementation then the scene is soured for Occulus, too. Very poor business planning.

Comment: Re:trickle down economics (Score 1) 223

"Ah, the old "the system will never be perfect, so we might as well not try to improve it" argument."
Sure but this is not an improvement. I am all for increasing taxes for school and frankly even for more federal aid for areas that have low incomes but a centralized system for all funds will have a negative impact and is unworkable.

Beware of bugs in the above code; I have only proved it correct, not tried it. -- Donald Knuth