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Comment: Re:You get what you pay for.... (Score 1) 463

by Labcoat Samurai (#38361770) Attached to: Many Early Adopters of the Amazon Fire Are Unhappy
Well you've certainly sat in more exotic seats than I have. For me, the main thing is just having the right support to maintain good posture. Slouching down into a seat may feel comfortable at first, but after several hours on the road, you get that pain in your back. So I really like the adjustable lumbar support on long trips, and I'm fond of the side bolstering for those tight curves. Of course my seats very likely are not actually the most comfortable in the world, and I'm a far cry away from collecting as much evidence as you have, certainly, but at the same time, I'm not sure how a person would conclude that they're bad.

Comment: Re:Still readying the artical but... (Score 1) 472

by Labcoat Samurai (#38361494) Attached to: New Study Concludes Math Gender Gap Is Cultural, Not Biological

Yes, when I say things like "I should hope that isn't what it argues", I'm being imprecise by personifying feminism as though it is one consistent ideological expression. As you point out, that is not the case. I suppose what I mean to say is that feminism, "to me", is not about trying to argue any particular facts about the genders. That's putting agenda ahead of facts. The facts may or may not be on your side when you do that. It may turn out that actually there are a lot of things women can do that men can't or vice versa. Now I don't personally think that's the case, but if your argument hinges upon that, you are forced to abandon your conclusions (good conclusions, like the genders deserve equal rights, treatment, and opportunity) if someone undermines your argument.

So while I am personally of the opinion that most of the differences between the genders are cultural, and that there is far more variation within the genders than between them, I don't base my belief in equal treatment on that premise, because equal treatment is not a notion that arises from the concept of equal ability. Naturally, ability is often a factor, but it is an unrelated factor. You would expect that a person more qualified for a job is more likely to get it, but you would not want that person to receive special treatment before that competence is demonstrated, and you would want every other person to have the same opportunity to demonstrate their own competence.

Comment: Re:Still readying the artical but... (Score 1) 472

by Labcoat Samurai (#38361222) Attached to: New Study Concludes Math Gender Gap Is Cultural, Not Biological

Presumably someone thinks I'm trolling in that I'm saying that human beings are of different worth, so perhaps it is necessary for me to clarify. When a person says that men and women are of equal worth because for everything one gender is good at, there is something corresponding to it that the other gender is good at, they are ignoring logic in their pursuit of diplomatic compromise. If that were truly why we treated people equally, what would we do if someone were to empirically show that trait A is more useful to society than trait B, thus proving that the gender that tends toward trait A is of more worth to society? Would we be forced to conclude, then, that gender discrimination in that gender's favor is appropriate? I think not. So no, all I'm saying is that the goal of equal treatment cannot and should not be justified by a quantifiable measure of worth, but rather by the fact that we derive our rights from our humanity.

Comment: Re:Still readying the artical but... (Score 0) 472

by Labcoat Samurai (#38358042) Attached to: New Study Concludes Math Gender Gap Is Cultural, Not Biological

A lot of people seem to think that feminism is arguing that men and women are the same, but that is wrong. Feminism merely argues that men and women are of equal worth

I should hope that isn't what it argues. If men and women are fundamentally different, then who is to say that what men are good at vs what women are good at are of equal "worth"? Very likely you would find that one is worth more than the other depending on society's needs. Also, not all human beings are of equal worth. Some are clearly far more intelligent or useful than others, but that doesn't mean that they deserve preferential treatment. And that's what feminism should be about. No human being should receive preferential treatment due to gender... not because of some measurably equal value, but because being a human being affords you certain rights and privileges.

Comment: Re:hmmm (Score 1) 272

by Labcoat Samurai (#36779488) Attached to: The Science Behind Fanboyism

I don't find it surprising that slashdot users favor android. I also don't find it surprising that they are a bit antagonistic about iOS. Your study here is akin to going to a secular humanism newsgroup and then concluding based on the posts there that atheists are numerous and more antagonistic than theists.

I don't have any data to back this up, so I'll understand if you decide to disregard my opinion, but my experience is that android users are far better informed about iOS and its advantages and disadvantages, and tend to prefer android on its merits more than out of fanboyism (though surely it is a factor, I suspect it is less of a factor than with apple). As for why they might be antagonistic? I don't know, but it might be at least partly a reaction to apple fans being obnoxious about their products. I'm reminded of Maddox's bit on apple. I've met quite a few apple loyalists who seem unwilling to consider alternatives, and when you consider that the alternatives usually provide more value for your money in all of the quantifiable ways (except number of apps with iOS devices), it comes off as a reaction to cognitive dissonance. You see them rationalizing about how you can't get viruses with apple computers (you can) or how things just work (in my experience, they often don't) or how apple's support might be better (they might be right).

And I know what you're probably thinking. I'm just a fanboy and I don't see it. But it's not quite as simple as that. My first smartphone *was* an iPhone. My initial assumptions about Android were generally negative. Seemed like a copycat and I was skeptical that it could perform as well. I used to come up with any rationalization I could, even when presented with conflicting evidence. "Well surely the iPhone easier to use" or "It's probably more reliable" or "I don't need to run multiple processes" (yes, I know, they fixed that) or "Voice dialing? eh, it's a luxury I don't have any use for". Reading reviews and talking to people, I learned that actually android had a lot to offer that iOS did not, and I got increasingly fed up with the lack of features. What finally did it in for me was when the iOS4 update turned my iPhone 3G into an unreliable useless piece of slag. Apps would autoclose themselves, take forever to load, etc. (some apps, like the dictionary one, would autoclose every time before fully loading). Some of my games became useless. All of my data was deleted by the sync operation. Sure, some of it I synced and got back, like contacts, apps, and music, but most of my app data was gone (including videos I had taken with a 3rd party app since the iPhone 3G didn't have integrated video capture). It was as if I suddenly noticed my apple koolaid was spiked with piss. Yes, I could have gotten an iPhone 4 and most of those issues would have been answered, but by then I no longer thought of apple as any better than anyone else if I could experience all of those issues... so I opened my mind and looked into alternatives, and based on every quantifiable feature, android phones just looked better.

Comment: Re:Protective Stradagy (Score 1) 272

by Labcoat Samurai (#36775132) Attached to: The Science Behind Fanboyism

Hanging on to the Idea that your OS choice is superior to the others, and the need to protect it against other ideas, falls under the same emotion. Failure to do so may cause other OS's to become more popular then you have wasted your time and resources on that choice. But if you defend it and keep it going then your choice was valid and good and you didn't wast your life on your OS choice.

I was going to say that I figure the reason the preference exists is that we appreciate the security of something we *know* performs adequately over the uncertainty of an alternative. When the two products were initially rated, that knowledge didn't exist, but once the person became familiar with the product and determined it was at least *good enough*, it becomes preferable to keep using the product than to switch and take a risk. What you've said here, I think, expands upon that and explains a bit more why we would not only prefer one product over the other, but would then irrationally and emotionally defend that product as well.

Comment: Re:cool idea but it needs a little bit more (Score 1) 115

by Labcoat Samurai (#36675012) Attached to: Tilting Bike Uses Google Maps To Simulate Routes
Hmmmm.... good point. Maybe it has to do with the way I run. A treadmill requires you to remain stationary, which is equivalent to maintaining a constant velocity, and a constant velocity eliminates inertia as a concern. Running on an actual hill could have some inefficiencies due to variance in the vertical component of velocity, which might make the force of your strides spike higher and trough lower... Or maybe the difference is all in wind resistance. I always thought running up an inclined treadmill seemed much easier next to running up an actual hill, but you can't always trust your perception.

Comment: Re:cool idea but it needs a little bit more (Score 1) 115

by Labcoat Samurai (#36671162) Attached to: Tilting Bike Uses Google Maps To Simulate Routes
Well yeah, that's a good point about using different muscles. It's essentially a different running technique, so even if you aren't actually fighting gravity, you are using your legs in a different way. So it's not that it doesn't do anything, it's just not really like running up a hill.

Comment: Re:cool idea but it needs a little bit more (Score 1) 115

by Labcoat Samurai (#36670776) Attached to: Tilting Bike Uses Google Maps To Simulate Routes
At least with bikes it's fairly trivial to add resistance. The one I've never understood is when they incline a treadmill. I mean, surely people realize that running up an incline is challenging because you are physically *moving* your body in opposition to gravity. Tilting a treadmill just forces you to raise your knees higher when you run, which is a bit harder, I suppose, but not at all analogous.

Comment: Re:Men vs. Women (Score 1) 432

by Labcoat Samurai (#36534108) Attached to: Women Remain the Ignored Audience In Gaming

By comparison to women, yes, men do ignore the fashion industry. There are real gender-based differences in behavior, and these are reflected in buying preferences. I doubt that we will ever see gender equality in the market for haute couture, or for videogames.

This is definitely true in much of the US, but the male indifference to fashion is new-ish even here, and even now, the most respected men tend to be good dressers (or have found people who can dress them well). Then go to Italy, and the game reaches a whole new level. I don't think this is a male thing. I think this is an expectation thing. In US culture today, men don't get nearly the impression that women do that it matters what they look like or how they dress. Go back 60 years or so, and any man who considered himself a gentleman could tell you about clothing items the average modern American man doesn't even know the name for.

Comment: Re:Haven't gamed in a while, but,,, (Score 1) 432

by Labcoat Samurai (#36533872) Attached to: Women Remain the Ignored Audience In Gaming

Despite what certain groups have tried to say during the years, there are key differences in the genders. While there are always exceptions, there is a fairly obvious list of "things that guys like" and "things that girls like".

So essentially, if people point out how their personal experience differs from this, that's covered by "there are always exceptions", and yet you can get away with treating your point as self-evident.

I won't bother to list these as it's not the point.

That's a shame. I love being told what I should like, as a man. Clearly, I should be a big sports fan, for example. Also, I probably was far too amused and entertained by collecting and experimenting with all the clothing options in Saints Row 2. And finally, in order to maintain my manly cred, I probably shouldn't admit that I loved every romance story in every Bioware game I've ever played (oops).

But lest you think I'm just girlier than your average guy, I also have own every Halo game ever released, have had great fun with the Gears of War series and dabbled a bit in Call of Duty, and didn't mind one moment of staring at Lara Croft's ass in the Tomb Raider games I've played.

My point, since I should get to it, is the any real life person has diverse interests that can not be reliably predicted from incidental qualities like gender. I fit the stereotype in some ways, and I don't fit it in others. Just like everyone.

If money can't buy happiness, I guess you'll just have to rent it.

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