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Comment Re:Why, oh, why.... (Score 1) 33

And I remembered it just fine - I just was too lazy to translate it into English and post it here.

So why did you attribute the incident to Alexievich herself ('Alexievich's husband was treated...') and not to one of her interviewees? That's such a fundamental misreading of the text that I can't take your judgement of it seriously. This is not a godlike Authorial Voice, it's what the interviewee remembers, whether accuately or not, about the most horrific experience of her life, yet you dismiss it as 'BS'. I have no idea what the exact medical procedures were in an emergency situation in a Soviet hospital in 1986, but I don't find it incredible that the donor would be given a general anaesthetic and might not react well to it. Her later poor health may be nothing to do with the procedure - the interviewee does not state this as fact (though it's implied), and she's presumably not a medical expert. Whether the other details of the procedure are completely accurate is hardly the issue - extreme trauma is not exactly conducive to precise recall. Or do you for some reason doubt that Ignatenko died of his exposure to radiation, or that an unsuccessful bone marrow transplant did not save his life, or that this was an extremely distressing emotional experience for his wife?

Comment Re:Why, oh, why.... (Score 4, Insightful) 33

I've actually read the "Voices of Chernobyl" long time ago. It's over-emotional crap with very little actual facts and some outright lies: Alexievich's husband was treated in the Moscow radiological military hospital by qualified staff (not by some fearful nurses), being a bone marrow donor does not lead to a disability and it's certainly not performed in the same operating room on a table next to the bone marrow recipient (yet her memoirs graphically describe it).

Either you didn't read it very carefully, or you haven't remembered it very well. It's not 'her memoirs', but an oral history compiled from interviews. The bone marrow recipient was a fireman at Chernobyl, Vasily Ignatenko, the husband of one of the interviewees, Lyudmilla Ignatenko, and the story is told in her own words - see the prologue to a long extract from the book:

Since Mrs Ignatenko's husband died after 2 weeks of horrible suffering, it seems bizarre (and incredibly callous) to label her experiences as 'over-emotional crap' unless you have some sort of agenda here. It is clear from the extract that Ignatenko was treated in a specialist radiological hospital (you seem to be implying it isn't) and we can hardly blame Mrs Ignatenko for perhaps attributing her sister-in-law's subsequent ill health to the transplant.

I would suggest Slashdot readers form their own judgements about this book.

Comment Re:Is that even possible? (Score 1) 577

Companies with rental models like Adobe (with Creative Cloud) don't quite make you do this, though they have a similar level of control over the licence you have to agree to every time the subscription comes up for renewal. But at least we can understand their motivation (pure greed, rather than paranoid xenophobia).

Comment Re:Is that even possible? (Score 4, Interesting) 577

I'm not sure that's possible. Can you revoke a licence of an old program? You can change the licence for a new version, sure, but when I buy (or download) a program, the licence that comes with it *at that time* is the licence I have to adhere to I would think.

From the manual:

"By default, TREEFINDER displays a license notice every time the program is launched.
Clicking the I-agree-button all the time might get on one's nerves after a while, so here is the
trick how to switch it off: using a text editor to create a file containing the words 'I promise
that I will always respect the current license conditions.' and save it in your 'Treefinder'
directory as 'i_agree' (without a file extension!). You will never see the license notice again."


"This license agreement is valid until the next software release. Afterwards, the license of the
latest TREEFINDER version applies."

So it looks like he was already a control freak back in 2011, and was attempting to reserve the right to impose retrospectively whatever licence he felt like issuing in the future. I suspect this wouldn't stand up to serious legal scrutiny, but it was already a big red flag before he went off the rails completely.

Comment Re:How does it help you move? (Score 5, Funny) 206

It would be nice if there were more of a specific description of what this app does. How does it help you move to iOS?

I can't tell you exactly what it does, but you might find my experience useful. After vaguely thinking that it might be interesting to get an iPhone for a change, I installed the app yesterday and ran it in the normal way. At first, nothing seemed to be happening, but then a faint rotating spiral appeared on the screen. As the beautifully designed pattern became gradually more intense, the phone began to play a strange pulsing harmony and the flash LED blinked softly in time to the music. At that point I began to feel strangely tired, and the next thing I knew it was half an hour later. I have no memory of what happened in that missing 30 minutes, but I see that a $949 transaction has been made on my credit card and a 128GB iPhone 6s Plus seems to be on pre-order from my brand new account at the Apple Store. I hope it comes quickly and my data has been transferred, as all my Android phone will now do is display random quotes in Helvetica like "Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower" and "Just avoid holding it in that way".

Comment Kiosks? How quaint (Score 1) 58

From the moment you check in, it's clear that hub is a little bit different. Lengthy queues at reception are replaced by kiosks (pictured above) that allow you to check in using your smartphone, with key cards for your room set up in seconds right in front of you.

The last time I stayed in a hotel (in Stockholm) I checked in online from the airport and my phone was the room key.

Comment Re:Somebody had to write it (Score 1) 312

I think the author, using the "offensive-computing" nick, knew very well that this would trigger a discussion and that's probably the reason this project was created in the first place.

Yes, mod this up as the most insightful contribution to the thread so far. Although the author is careful to use other example in the readme, the code and example application are (provocatively) written to discriminate against everyone except the usual racist definition of 'white Europeans'. The 'European' group of reference populations defined by 23andme would normally include Ashkenazi Jews:


but this group is explicitly excluded by offensive-computing:

Comment Re:Google is becoming irrelevant (Score 4, Insightful) 165

Google won't think for you.

Unfortunately, Google tries to think for you all the time, and usually make a bad job of it. You can't possibly be searching for [thing you typed], you must mean [thing with a similar name that's much more popular on social media this week]. You don't want established information about [thing you typed], you want 3 search pages of the same [parroted news story vaguely related to thing from this morning]. You don't want [famous torrent site], you want [misleadingly named malware domain because we've nuked the actual site for some mysterious reason of our own]. Once upon a time, Google was used by people who were happy to think for themselves. Now it targets the mass market, and has algorithms designed to second guess poorly constructed searches at the expense of dumbing down the experience for the minority of users who can put together a precise set of search terms. It feels like a blunt instrument now - finding anything obscure always seems to need multiple quoted strings (like AltaVista back in the day) and Verbatim mode.

"Anyone attempting to generate random numbers by deterministic means is, of course, living in a state of sin." -- John Von Neumann