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Comment: Re:Valid science isn't the only yardstick. (Score 1) 134

by Phasma Felis (#44025737) Attached to: Proposed Rule Would Drastically Restrict Chimp Research
Well, in that case, we ought to be allowed to experiment on humans against their will, surely. I mean, chimps are similar to us, but they're not identical, and those dissimilarities slow down human-applicable research. if vivisecting a few hundred screaming humans can advance lifesaving medical science, why, it would be selfish not to strap them down!

Comment: Try to sympathize with other users (Score 1) 429

by Phasma Felis (#43749095) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Dealing With a Fear of Technological Change?

I find that it's a really good idea to try to understand why people prefer the systems they do. Be sympathetic, get inside their heads, and you'll be better able to both defend your own choices and sympathize with theirs.

This part really should be obvious, but on Slashdot it's not: if you ever conclude that anyone likes any system because "they're stupid", go back and try again. For non-techies, a dirt-simple, friendly, easy-to-use system that does the tiny set of tasks they need is genuinely more useful than a powerful, complex system that they don't have the time or inclination to learn about. Not everyone derives pleasure and satisfaction from figuring out complex systems, and many people simply have other things to do with their time.

Comment: Re:Why not just 0? (Score 1) 996

My guess is that there's several reasons: BAC below a certain threshold doesn't measurably affect your ability to drive; lots of innocuous things contain alcohol in quantities too small to ever cause intoxication; and breathalyzers are far from 100% accurate. You don't want people losing their license because they drank a glass of orange juice, or just because the breathalyzer erroneously showed 0.01% instead of 0.00%.

Comment: "You don't wear your Bluetooth all the time" (Score 1) 533

by Phasma Felis (#43624049) Attached to: Is Google Glass Too Nerdy For the Mainstream?

"Think of the Bluetooth headset: it’s a really sensible way to use your phone without having to take it out of your pocket—so sensible that there’s really no reason not to keep that headset in your ear most of the time. But you don’t, do you?"

Yes. Yes, I do. Know why? Because I'm a nerd, I'm practical, and I don't give two wet shits what you think.

What weirds me out about this excerpt (I did not RTFA) is the vague implication that if people are too image-obsessed to use a practical, advantageous product, it's the product that's defective and not the people.


V&A Scraps Napalm Death Gig For Fear Decibel Levels Will Damage Sculptures 79

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the slaves-to-the-grind dept.
An anonymous reader writes "The Victoria and Albert Museum has cancelled an 'experimental' concert by a death metal rock band amid fears that the high decibel levels could destroy some of its most treasured artefacts, including Ming vases and priceless sculptures. The British band planned to play inside a specially-constructed ceramic sculpture with the idea that the piece would explode under the force of hits such as Order of the Leech and Fear, Emptiness, Despair" I believe this "death metal rock" is known as "grindcore." Maybe they should book Manowar next.

Comment: Re:Didn't read any other advice. (Score 1) 561

by Phasma Felis (#43182945) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best Way To Block Noise In a Dorm?

The questioner asked how to deal with a problem at school, and your answer was "Finish school, then..."

You're not answering the question that was asked. You're answering a completely different question that is useless to the asker and is only intended to make you feel better about yourself, you Hard-Minded Realist, you. Thus, you're a troll.

Comment: Re:Read your work out loud (Score 1) 561

by Phasma Felis (#43182803) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best Way To Block Noise In a Dorm?

This is true in general, but when you're having trouble with something--a coding problem, say--it can be very useful to describe it out loud. Processing things verbally makes your brain think about them differently. I'd like to have a dollar for every time I've struggled with something for three hours, gone to ask a coworker for help, and then realized the solution while I was explaining the problem to them.

Comment: Re:Don't Complain... (Score 1) 561

by Phasma Felis (#43182759) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best Way To Block Noise In a Dorm?

Telling an ADD person that they have to get used to distractions is like telling a person in a wheelchair to quit moaning and walk already.

Why is it so hard to believe that not everyone's brain works like yours? With ADD (and some kinds of autism), a conversation on TV across the room feels like it's being shouted in your ear. It is not physically possible to ignore. It can't be fixed with practice or willpower any more than a severed spinal cord can be.


Growing Consensus: The Higgs Boson Exists 254

Posted by timothy
from the actually-they-just-like-to-play-with-equipment dept.
It's a long, slow road from tentative discovery, to various forms of peer review, to wide acceptance, never mind theory and experimental design, but recent years' work to pin down the Higgs Boson seem to be bearing fruit in the form of cautious announcements. FBeans writes with excerpts from both the New York Times ("Physicists announced Thursday they believe they have discovered the subatomic particle predicted nearly a half-century ago, which will go a long way toward explaining what gives electrons and all matter in the universe size and shape.") and from The Independent ("Cern says that confirming what type of boson the particle is could take years and that the scientists would need to return to the Large Hadron Collider — the world's largest 'atom smasher' — to carry out further tests. This will measure at what rate the particle decays and compare it with the results of predictions, as theorised by Edinburgh professor Peter Higgs 50 years ago.")

Aren't you glad you're not getting all the government you pay for now?