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Comment Re: FTFY (Score 5, Interesting) 78

because this is their business model, selling as much information about you as possible.

Utterly wrong. This is not their business model. Their model is it to, via algorithms, identify people who are most likely to respond positively to a given ad and then to show them the ad. Nowhere does this involve selling any information about even a single individual to a third party. You are simply ill informed. Also, whatever Apple does or does not claim is entirely irrelevant. After all they're a competitor. Finally, to my knowledge, there is not a single documented case of Google ever selling personal data about anybody they're tracking.

Comment Re:Do you think that some distant.... (Score 3, Interesting) 69

maybe... just 1% from being the great apes

If you meant that humans are 1% different from other Great Apes you would be wrong. Humans are classified as Great Apes. If not you'd have some other Great Apes (bonobos and chimps) actually being closer to us than to the rest of the Great Apes. It was only ignorance or possibly human arrogance that in the past led to humans not being included with the other Great Apes.

Comment Re:The Selfish Gene (Score 2) 249

It's not pedantry! Also, if someone has no offspring but somehow contributes to the survival of others, that individual promotes the survival of the vast majority of his or her genes. The effect is even greater if the support is for offspring of close relatives. Finally, I think most people like to delude themselves with fantasies of how unique they are!

Comment Re:But thats OK! (Score 1) 276

Your friends don't seem to be a representative group :)

I sure hope not! The majority of mankind seems to be deeply superstitious, too and almost all of my many friends are atheists or agnostics. I also like to think that most or all of my friends have no strong national attachments a.k.a. "patriotism". So, yes, I like to believe that they are highly unrepresentative of humanity in ways that are important to me. OTOH, they are more representative in that I have American, European, Asian and African friends.

Oh, just to clarify: I see nothing wrong with watching sports for entertainment. It's just not my cup of tea and I haven't been able to relate to doing that since I was around 14.

Comment Re:But thats OK! (Score 1) 276

People like sports...

Yes, people are weird! Still don't see why that means that students and universities need to subsidize some people's hobbies! Amongst my friends about half like to watch sports for entertainment and the other half feel the way I do and would rather stare at a blank wall than watch sports. Personally I prefer reading a good book, watching animé or studying Japanese. And yes, I am a happy nerd!

Comment Re:But thats OK! (Score 1, Interesting) 276

Also, why do sports and higher education have anything to do with each other?

They don't, at least not in my country. I got my Master's and Ph.D. in the US and was and still am baffled by this. What really bugged me though is that I had to support people's sports hobby with a financial contribution. I thought it would have been better for other students to pay for my scifi-book-reading hobby instead. The bogus argument was that the sports teams were making my university money. If that would have actually been true, why did I have to financially support it then? Also, I never attended a single game in my 5 years at my university. I would have preferred watching paint dry. My degrees are in physics, btw. and I am from Germany. I also think it is disgusting that people get scholarships based on their athletic abilities. Are we still ape men?

Comment Re:My Killer App... (Score 2) 155

What you can "see" is wrong! :-) I have indeed translated little snippets of Japanese with Google Translate. Yes, it is often terrible, but it also is frequently useful, for example I tried it on a sign in Kyoto and it translated it as "not cross". Knowing quite a bit about the structure of the Japanese language and how much it leaves out relative to English, it was easy to guess that what it would be in English is "Do not cross!". I also found various other useful snippets. As Google Translate is based on data mining and statistical methods it would seem that one can hope that it will improve greatly over time. Until then I will study more Japanese! ;-)

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