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Comment: Re:Bummer (Score 1) 306

by MisterSquid (#49351105) Attached to: RSA Conference Bans "Booth Babes"

Your post is modded "Insightful", but if I could, I would mod it "Dangerously Insightful". If women en masse knew that they could manipulate most men with a sweet smile and some relevant conversation, many of us would be doomed.

It cuts both (multiple) ways.

If $person1 is aware of sexual attraction on the part of $person2, it would not be too difficult for $person1 to manipulate $person2.

This is why it's important to behave respectfully, thoughtfully, and openly when dealing with other people. Men, women, what-have-you.

Comment: Re:"Pretends to be online"? (Score 1) 305

by MisterSquid (#49262053) Attached to: Prison Program Aims To Turn Criminals Into Coders

they post snarky comments in their web browser which dumps them to dev/null and notifications with static text like "love u 4 ever dog" keep popping up on their desktop.

The real tragedy will happen once they've finished paying their debts to society and they get full access to the Internet with no one having told them not to read the comments.

Comment: Re:Accessibility is still a sad joke! (Score 1) 79

by MisterSquid (#48947615) Attached to: How Blind Programmers Write Code

Please correct me if I'm wrong but OSX has no high contrast - white on black themes. Also I couldn't find an easy/comfortable way of using the magnifier, I greatly prefer Win8's magnifier - it has a few limitations but I found OSX's one annoying.

From your descriptions of how you use of Windows accessibility features, it sounds like you've figured out highly efficient usage patterns and your facility with navigating the UI seems (to me) a bit higher than even many expert users. So, manipulating a different set of accessibility interface may not be comfortable or as useful for you, which totally makes sense. To answer your question about contrast:

OS X does have a separate slider and checkbox for contrast.

I don't use these regularly so can't comment on their usefulness. When I manipulate them, they do noticeably affect the display contrast, so much so that when the contrast slider is high enough, font edges of text and other UI elements start to wash out.

OS X does not implement themes and, like you, I would be ALL OVER a system-supported dark/professional theme. (With the latest version of OS X, Apple has introduced an extensions framework which opens a path to vendor-supported UI theming. But even if this is the direction OS X is headed, I would not expect custom themes for at least a couple more years.)

I have good corrected vision, so I don't use the magnifier regularly. I occasionally do fiddly UI work and it works OK enough for me in that instance. It has some customizability but not a whole lot.

On the customization front, I use a third-party piece of software that I sort of think of as my personal API for the UI (as well as much of the command line and UNIX layer). That software is Keyboard Maestro. It is definitely worth checking out if you regularly use a Mac-like machine ; ).

Comment: Re:Accessibility is still a sad joke! (Score 1) 79

by MisterSquid (#48947309) Attached to: How Blind Programmers Write Code

Not trying to troll (honest), but you but have you looked into Macintosh systems? The visual accessibility features are invoked at the level of the graphics layer (Quartz, I believe) so there's no futzing with colors as such.

For example, inverting colors (which is how I compute 99% of the time) cannot be overridden by third-party software. (The current trend for "professional" UIs, which avoids the black-text-on-white-background usability nightmare of most software and websites, makes me glad I can toggle this setting using a keyboard shortcut).

For your use case, there is an adjustable contrast setting that can be customized to the point of making your computer look like a Warhol painting if you want (thankfully, there is also the option to desaturate colors so the high-contrast display all black and white).

If you absolutely have to have particular Windows or Linux software, you could run those OS'es as VM guests, which is not ideal but at least you'll have access to the accessibility features in your host OS.

One of the things Apple gets better than many other software companies is accessibility. It's not perfect, but in my experience it's very good.


Comment: Re: Different markets... (Score 1) 458

by MisterSquid (#48947127) Attached to: How, and Why, Apple Overtook Microsoft

Intuitively? When I hit the "home" or "end" keys in terminal, I expect them to go to the home or end of the current command line I'm on, not to the top or bottom of the terminal. Why would I want the top or bottom of the terminal?

"Home" or "end" keys? Please.

Pro user tips: Ctrl-A gets you to the beginning of the line and Crtl-E to the line's end. This also works in web-based text input fields like Slashdot's and Google's (which may be a product of using Mac-compatible web browsers).

Comment: Re:Popcorn time! (Score 2) 376

by MisterSquid (#48892179) Attached to: Behind the MOOC Harassment Charges That Stunned MIT

Look at the actual crime reporting figures, locally rape convictions stand at around 8 per 100,000. Now let's get crazy and say only one in twenty rapes and or sexual assault charges result in a conviction. Let's get even crazier and say one in twenty people who are raped even report the matter. That leaves us with 3200 per 100,000, or about one in thirty. Still almost an order of magnitude smaller than feminist figures and almost certainly still a gigantic exaggeration.

You're missing the dimension of time which crime statistics do include (you didn't include a link, btw). If your hypothesized/extrapolated numbers for rape is multiplied for the same population over a period of, say, 10 years and presuming each year produces new victims, that would mean than a relatively stable population base of 100,000 would yield 32,000 rapes.

It's not like rape (or any crime) only happens in a given population for only one year. People have lifespans and the number of victims accumulate over time, increasing the percentage of people who fall victim.

Your mistake was so easy to catch that if I didn't know better I'd say someone such a miss by someone who's looking so carefully at the data probably has an axe to grind.

Then again, maybe I don't know better and I'll say it anyway.

Comment: Re:I doubt the Republicans wrote it... (Score 2) 182

by MisterSquid (#48846643) Attached to: Republican Bill Aims To Thwart the FCC's Leaning Towards Title II

Actually, it is unconstitutional to have laws enacted in ways other than the constitution proscribes.[...].

Can the US government with absolutely no legislative act making a change but by board or panel constituted under it- constitutionally declare pot illegal.[...]

Everything you say after the last sentence I quoted is a straw man.

Reclassifying ISPs under Title II is not a legislative act. On the contrary, it depends on the legislative Act known as Title II.

Here is a common-language explanation of the legality of using Title II to classify communications company as "common carriers".

You seem to think that classifying communications companies requires a legislative act when it does not. It simply requires a vote by the FCC and a reclassification of ISPs as common carriers under Title II would have consequences but the enactment of new legislation is not one of them.

Comment: Re:I doubt the Republicans wrote it... (Score 1) 182

by MisterSquid (#48846185) Attached to: Republican Bill Aims To Thwart the FCC's Leaning Towards Title II

The problem with the FCC taking control of something it has previously refused to control is a steep problem for republicans to overcome on a constitutional basis.

Why is the FCC regulating an industry that OBVIOUSLY WOULD BENEFIT FROM REGULATION a "problem to overcome"?

Oh, that's right. it's because the line of argumentation which backs populist conservative/Republican talking points cannot understand that Constitutionality does not prohibit the regulation of public utilities, especially when such regulation is in alignment with even the most hardcore conservative defenders of free market capitalism.

Comment: Great Part of Republican-backed Industry Bill (Score 2, Interesting) 182

by MisterSquid (#48846145) Attached to: Republican Bill Aims To Thwart the FCC's Leaning Towards Title II

"which Internet service providers (ISPs) and Republicans say would unnecessarily burden the industry with regulation." - Except it IS NECESSARY, DUMMIES.

Given where US broadband is even in major metropolitan areas like San Francisco, New York, and Chicago, regulation as Title II is EXACTLY what US ISPs need to get their acts together. I mean 12 mbs down and 5 mbs up for $50/month in 2015. Give me a fucking break.

The great part of this Republican-backed shill bill? Obama is going to VETO it.

Suck THAT you plutocratic, money-grubbing, technologically-illiterate enemies of the United States. (Yes, I'm talking about the so-called "honorable" representatives who are backing this bill, whatever their political stripes may be. [Though we all know exactly what those stripes are, right?])

Comment: Re:What do you mean? (Score 1) 45

by MisterSquid (#48838965) Attached to: Google Search Will Be Your Next Brain

Google doesn't need anymore money, thank you very much. It's fine that they 'waste' it on research. Much like ol Elon.

Nonetheless, I think they need to think about doing something with less potential for serious problems. I found the phrase

We never told it during training, ‘This is a cat,’” Dean told the New York Times. “It basically invented the concept of a cat.”

To be the scariest thing I've read all day. It did that by parsing YouTube. That was the first attempt to parse YouTube with 'Deep Learning".

I do not want to be around when it finally figures out about 4Chan.

My OMG moment came when I read

Nobody is saying that this system has exceeded the human ability to classify photos; indeed, if a human hired to write captions performed at the level of this neural net, the newbie wouldn’t last until lunchtime. But it did shockingly, shockingly well for a machine. Some of the dead-on hits included “a group of young people playing a game of frisbee,” “a person riding a motorcycle on a dirt road,” and “a herd of elephants walking across a dry grass field.”

because looking at those images made me realize the machine basically trained itself to do couple two domains of knowledge that even experts in language acquisition and image recognition only partially understand.

That's just flat out amazing.

The other part that got me going "Wow" reads

The neural-net system was left to its own deep learning devices to learn game rules—the system simply tried its hand at millions of sessions of Pong, Space Invaders, Beam Rider and other classics, and taught itself to do equal or surpass an accomplished adolescent. (Take notice, Twitch!) Even more intriguing, some of its more successful strategies were ones that no humans had ever envisioned.

As an old-timer (older than Dean which makes me feel like I missed the boat by spending so much time earning a doctorate in the humanities), I wanted to know precisely what successful alternative strategies DeepMind had devised in which games.

I mean, besides being completely fucking cool, that shit is like gothic scary.

The end of the article where Hassabis notes that humans should never spend any time wondering what book they should read next made me think of Richard Powers’ Galatea 2.2 which is an incredible read about the attempt to build an AI capable of passing a Master's exam in English Literature. Not as nerdy as the /. might like but it raises many of the important questions that we face as machines increasingly become able to make autonomous decisions based on (as the article calls it) "unstructured data".

I'm really glad to hear DeepMind has formed an external board to monitor the progress of its development and while the composition of that board is secret, I do think the product of its deliberations should be made public. In any case, it won't be too long before the US government (or the government of whatever country DeepMind cares to be in) will consider it an issue of national security and categorize AI and neural net technology as a munition or whatever it takes to get greater insight into what DeepMind and companies like it are actually building.

Comment: Re:Good ol' 777 (Score 4, Informative) 105

by MisterSquid (#48785683) Attached to: Sloppy File Permissions Make Red Star OS Vulnerable

Unix doesn't help much. I mean if apache can't read /home/me/www/path/to/index.html the OS isn't going to tell you its because of the permissions on /home. Meanwhile you have given up and gone chmod -R 777 /

Actually, both the browser and the Apache log will tell you it's a permissions issue. Go to the root of /home and either add the Apache user to the group that has access to "/home/me/www/path/to/index.html" or change the group access to Apache's user.

Once the group is correct, change the permissions to g+r if necessary.

Taking the 15 seconds to properly set permissions when you know the issue is a permissions issue (otherwise why would chmod 777 fix the issue) really is just too easy not to do.

Also, use your signal lights!

Saliva causes cancer, but only if swallowed in small amounts over a long period of time. -- George Carlin