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Comment Re:Is quantum mechanics a theory? (Score 3, Insightful) 208

Gravity exists because spacetime, curved by massive bodies, effectively changes what it means to have inertial reference frames from the more intuitive Newtonian notion. Take away the massive bodies and spacetime flattens, straight lines are Euclidean, and gravitational attraction goes away. Gravity, then, exists due to the interaction between mass and spacetime.

Of course, you could ask why that interaction exists, and keep asking the question as more explanations are found. I don't know that that'd ever end, but I guess you could eventually hit some inherent axiom or self-referential property of nature. If you're asking for some ultimate underlying conscious intention, though, you may find yourself disappointed, or at least you should accept the possibility that such a question may simply not apply.

Comment Re:Obligatory (Score 2) 119

Worms are basically a subset of viruses. They are self-replicating malware, just like typical viruses, but don't rely on a human action, such as installation of an infected application.

Assuming that your post wasn't intended as a joke (the dubious claim of viral invulnerability leads me to think it was a joke), how exactly is vulnerability to something like the worm mentioned okay to brush off (claiming mis-classification is a tactic to steer conversation away from the subject discussed)?

Comment Censorship isn't just for Lewd/Bitching Comments (Score 1) 581

This story only recently broke, and already there are several comments intended to preempt objections, ostensibly by lonely white males yearning for an open forum to complain about SJWs and discuss fantasies, as if that preemption had a deep grounding in some service to civility. It's both amusing and saddening to see that type of naivete on display.

While it'd be nice if people would abide by "community guidelines" for civil communication in a public forum, both in terms of proposing arguments and reacting to them, any time such standards are imposed as a filter, broad abuses of those guidelines soon follow. I mean, one of the few things as enticing as spreading your own idea is quashing those ideas you think are wrong. When argumentation fails to combat a competing idea, either because the idea actually has merit or because its proponents are unrelenting in their dogged adherence to it, few people possess the ability to just set the argument aside and move on. When there's a mechanism in place to censor those arguments, right or wrong, people will use it, justifying their censorship with all manner of rationalizations.

For example, lets consider something like the deservedly maligned Atheism+, a group ostensibly meant for atheists who care about social justice issues. At the heart of their charter is a divisive "us vs. them" mentality for anyone opposed to their exact ideology, complete with community expulsion and censorship of opposing views. I won't go into detail regarding their practices, since others have already done so, but I will pose this question: Is a movement so bent on communication controls really their to promote understanding, or domination?

Finally, while I don't necessarily think that Reddit will become something nearly so toxic as Atheism+, I think it's important to understand how Atheism+ got where it is, and understand that the principles that got it there don't have to be relegated to minor movements. Though I don't personally go there often, Reddit is important, and is important for several people. To undermine the foundations of free speech upon which it is built is to empower those seeking domination (who don't have to be governments), and it can happen faster and on a broader scale than many of us would care to consider.

Comment Re:California (Score 2) 346

It's rather difficult to fallow an orchard...

Note that those orchards took years to grow, and were grown in the first place because annual crops, like tomatoes and melons, weren't nearly as profitable. If you had worked as a responsible citizen to prop up legislation meant to curtail orchard growth in favor more flexible annuals, perhaps almonds wouldn't present a noticeable draw on water today. Or maybe if you had agreed to pay higher prices for annuals, farmers wouldn't have been incentivized to grow almonds in the first place. At this point, though, it's exceedingly unfair to tell farmers that they just need to forfeit years of effort and expenses to satisfy the water demands of people like you. I mean, can you really blame farmers for planting more profitable crops when nobody raised any objections?

By the way, another way to end the California water crisis would be for people like you to leave. Oh, don't like that suggestion?

Comment Re:Layoffs (Score 2) 63

The $750 million of "annual run rate synergies" and "track record of rapid deleveraging" should give you a sense of how much and how fast Avago will slice from Broadcom:

In my experience, higher-ups for mergers like this aren't afraid to cut until it hurts, then hire back later (if absolutely necessary).

Comment Re:flashy, but risky too. (Score 1) 83

That's undoubtedly true, but not, I think, the intended market for Uber.

Similar to how you probably wouldn't (or at least shouldn't) use Uber to transport a VIP, you wouldn't use Uber's product service to transport high-value, hard to replace goods. Instead, this service would be useful for goods which are readily replaceable, and just need to get from A to B. If something happens on the first attempt, you reroute with a 2nd attempt, deliver the good, and get reimbursed for the good that was lost. They'd essentially be treating goods as packets, and I'd think that could work pretty well for several cases, but certainly not cases that the service wasn't designed to accommodate.

Comment Re:They already have (Score 1) 667

What evidence would convince you that the Earth revolves around the Sun?

It's just like those "scientific" crazies to attempt to convince good, skeptical geocentrists that the Earth actually revolves around the sun, right? I mean, there's tons of evidence to support a geocentric view, and Captain Janeway even narrated a documentary about it. Given the community of geocentrists thriving in the face of supposed evidence to the contrary, clearly, the "science" of heliocentrism is really just another religion in disguise.

Seriously, why was this marked insightful? Maybe the mods confused insight with incite?

Comment Re:Wishful Thinking (Score 1) 571

Ok, a few points:

1) "overwhelming scientific evidence" applies to my mention of vaccines and evolution. My point, obviously lost on you, is that people who reject such knowledge despite mountains of data and cross validation will dismiss a study regarding genetic modification outright; the substance of the study will be rejected without even any examination.

2) "impossible to prove a negative" applies in any scenario, not just safety regarding genetically modified crops. For example, you can't prove with absolute certainty that there isn't a link between vaccines and autism, but you can show, through widespread observation and statistical analysis, that such a link appears to be incredibly unlikely.

The point of the article, which you seem to have ignored, is that ingestion of genetically modified crops has been studied for quite some time, across multiple generations of livestock, by multiple independent groups (24 of them) with no apparent ill effects. This situation is very similar to vaccines in that there is a significant benefit of genetically modified crops (e.g. increased yields and pest resistance), and little in the way of substantial drawbacks (besides being politically incorrect, of course). Being that you seem to fall into the category of "I don't care what's said, I'm right you're wrong" I know this point probably means nothing to you, but you're welcome to scrutinize the 24 studies mentioned.

3) I know you're just trying to troll, but I'm always up for more education. Since you know so much about what I do or do not know, could you please point me at the peer reviewed articles that fill in my knowledge gaps? I'm especially interested in those articles which dispassionately enumerate the observed and measured (not just theoretical) risks associated with genetically engineered crops, and which examine the projected costs of such risks (not just monetarily, of course) relative to benefits. Thanks.

Comment Wishful Thinking (Score 2, Insightful) 571

perhaps this study will help to ease the fears of genetically engineered food and foster a more scientific discussion on the role of agricultural biotechnology

Yeah, because people who reject vaccines and evolution despite overwhelming scientific evidence are going to suddenly embrace reason concerning genetically modified crops. If anything, this study will somehow reinforce their views. Already, I see others on /. -- people who really should know better -- cooking up conspiracy theories.

Possessions increase to fill the space available for their storage. -- Ryan