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Comment: Gender: Nurture or Nature? (Score 1) 441

An interesting programme I watched was "Horizon: Is Your Brain Male or Female?". The title is a bit crap but some of the experiments were interesting, like the observation that Barbary macaques seemed to be drawn to toys along gender lines. The boys going for the cars while the female macaques preferring the dolls.

The most interesting experiment, I thought, was when they observed how adults treated babies. For instance they tended to treat the boys as more robust pushing them more in physical environments while being gentler with the girls. They dressed up the babies as boys or girls so the same child was treated differently when presented as a different gender.

I guess the general outcome was that it is a bit of both nurture and nature, as pretty much any complex thing is. My thought is that culture is the overriding factor, different cultures or times can choose whether a profession like nursing is "for" men or women.

Comment: Re:Substantially correct, but . . . (Score 1) 263

by MightyDrunken (#49724329) Attached to: Book Review: The Terrorists of Iraq

According to Naomi Klein in The Shock Doctrine part of the reason to exclude Baath party members from the Government was to simply sack nearly everyone in the Iraqi Government. The US had an agenda of privatising Iraq and freeing its markets and it didn't need a local Government to slow them down.

Comment: Lithium & Aluminium (Score 1) 317

by MightyDrunken (#49612407) Attached to: Tesla's Household Battery: Costs, Prices, and Tradeoffs

What makes lithium such a good basis for a battery is that it has an atomic weight of just 3. It's the lightest natural metal on the periodic table. With such a small atomic weight - it's density is immense, you can pack a gazillion lithium atoms in a tiny volume.

Atomic weight has little to do with ion size, well unless you are comparing very different atomic masses. According to this page Al3+ is smaller than Li+ and the atomic radius of Al vs Li is smaller too.

The low atomic weight of lithium (7) is helpful compared to Al(27) but batteries are composed of many other components so it does not make a huge difference.

Comment: Worrying (Score 1) 160

by MightyDrunken (#49330125) Attached to: Energy Company Trials Computer Servers To Heat Homes

I have had the fancy that in the future the computers with the most processing power in your home would be the devices we currently use to just generate heat. Things like hairdryers and electric ovens would be massively powerful computers full of graphical processing unit like chips. Crunching fiendishly difficult computation while performing their normal function, just generating heat is waseful.

Now it seems this random idea is coming true, I hope many of my other random ideas don't come true for the safety of humanity!

Comment: It did well for about 50% of the tested games (Score 1) 148

by MightyDrunken (#49135275) Attached to: Artificial Intelligence Bests Humans At Classic Arcade Games

Of the 49 games tested there were about half which it did not do as well as a human player. They rated the performance of the AI against random play which equals 0 and a fairly skilled human player at 100%. The games the DQN agent did poorly at were:

  • Montezuma's revenge 0%
  • Private Eye 2%
  • Gravitar 5%
  • Frostbite 6%
  • Asteroids 7%
  • Ms. Pac-Man 13%
  • Bowling 14%
  • Double Dunk 17%
  • Seaquest 25%
  • Venture 32%
  • Alien 42%
  • Amidar 43%
  • Zaxxon 54%
  • ...

It would be interesting to compare the games it did well at Vs those it did poorly at. Unfortunately I do not know my Atari games well enough to comment,

Comment: Re:How about energy conservation? (Score 3, Interesting) 288

by MightyDrunken (#49024961) Attached to: Quantum Equation Suggests Universe Had No Beginning
While others have stated that though conversation of energy is one of the main axioms of physics it does not necessarily apply to the creation of the Universe, only what is within it. However many physicist believe that the net energy of the Universe is zero as the potential energy of gravity is negative, balancing out the positive energy in the Universe.

Comment: Nutrition is a minefield (Score 1) 958

by MightyDrunken (#48979169) Attached to: Science's Biggest Failure: Everything About Diet and Fitness
In a way the differing ever changing advice regarding nutrition is no surprise. Conducting studies on people who you can't really control poses lots of problems when collecting and analysing the data. This can create a situation where different studies seem to come up with different results and then journalists or people with a vested interest can run away with the results they favour, over blowing the facts to fit their agenda.

Now I will contradict myself and say that really nutrition advice hasn't changed, well at least science based nutrition. Eat a varied diet, avoid overly processed foods and simple carbohydrates, more importantly do lots of exercise. Only then worry about what number of eggs are optimal for health.

What really bugs me about nutrition is a new wave of "scientific based" advice which is contrarian to most other previous advice. A good example is the idea that saturated fats are good for you and carbohydrates and vegetable fats are bad. A number of highly moderated posts above link to the article The Questionable Link Between Saturated Fat and Heart Disease by Nina Teicholz. The article is a condensed version of her book which gets an absolute pasting The Big Fat Surprise: A Critical Review; Part 1. She accuses scientists of bad practice and hiding data, yet quote mines studies leaving out the conclusions which undermine her thesis.

Comment: My Experience (Score 3, Insightful) 467

by MightyDrunken (#48889669) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best Anti-Virus Software In 2015? Free Or Paid?
I have tried a few paid options and a number of free antivirus. Nothing as yet has convinced me to use a paid option.
For Windows 8 there is no need as Microsoft Security Essentials, renamed Windows Defender, is good enough. Otherwise I use Avast, which seems to work well and comes with a few handy options like a software updater and the option to run a scan at boot time. Though it can be annoying recently as it reminds you of other paid features like VPN tunnels.

Steer clear of Norton for God's sake, it seems as bad as the disease itself. I dislike Symentec and had problems in the past with AVG. A few years back an update prevented browsers from accessing the internet.

If you think you may be infected try running a scan of the free version of Malwarebytes, it gives a good second opinion and is great at cleaning up some infections.

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