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Comment Re:gone and stay gone (Score 1) 811

The conspiracy theory that he "baited" his teachers is one thing, and that seems sketchy enough to me...after all we know that nobody believed for a moment that it was a bomb (or a "bomb trigger" as somebody on slashdot insisted); at worst they thought it was part of a failed plot to do a bomb hoax. A bomb hoax would be bad.

But seeing as there is no clear and present danger posed by something that could be mistaken for a hoax bomb, an immediate arrest was unwarranted. It shouldn't be possible to bait a school teacher into arresting you by having a disassembled alarm clock go off in your knapsack, especially when you identify it as a clock upon questioning.

It's substantially more wrong that a person can be arrested for this, than a student can play a prank.

That doesn't mean I think 15 million dollars should change hands. He did get arrested, but he was let go on the same day; he was unlawfully denied his civil right to speak with his father, but again, same day. He also got a short school suspension, which was also stupid but also doesn't mean a great deal of money should change hands. Bad arrests should be punished, commensurate to how bad it was.

I imagine 15 million dollars is just some lawyer throwing out a worst-case-scenario number and that literally nobody on Earth thinks 15 million dollars is on the table. My gut number is 10 thousand dollars. The law was abused and broken, and there has to be punitive measures taken for that; but mistakes will happen and the mistake was relatively low in scope.

Comment Re:Integrated very well (Score 1) 811

He's a child. He doesn't get to just stay in the United States if his parents are moving.

I'm not sure whether there is anything he could possibly do to stay in the US in this circumstance if he wanted to.

He should absolutely get restitution; 15 million dollars is obviously crazy though. I was thinking along the lines of 10 thousand. Certainly not much more, and possibly a bit less.

Comment Re:GM producers are shooting themselves in the foo (Score 2, Insightful) 514

They did show that the genetic modification resulted in food that is safe, to the satisfaction of the FDS.

I've said this before -- if you want labels to differentiate, then add a label to non-GMO food (and obviously, enforce truth-in-advertising laws on that). That's not something that a producer of GMO food can reasonably lobby to prevent.

To justify requiring somebody else to label something on their product, there should be some reason that this information is particularly more important than, say, the percentage of your hamburger that is composed of cattle who exhibited homosexual behaviour in the field. Which I am absolutely certain some crazy people would pay attention to if it was written on a label, and I'm also certain that all the producers would fight against this label because that's a total pain in the ass with no good purpose. If gay cattle are so safe, why aren't you proudly labelling them? Clearly you're hiding something. Like the fact that this is how GAY spreads.

Comment Re:"nonconsensual sex or touching" (Score 5, Informative) 399

If you look up the study, the exact quote is “nonconsensual penetration or sexual touching involving physical force or incapacitation,”.

The summary is brain-dead, but in a way that *understates* the problem, compared to the actual quote (which doesn't contain the word "rape"). After all, you're interpreting this as lower arms and shoulders, but that's clearly not "sexual touching involving physical force or incapacitation"..

Comment Re:So no word of the year this year? (Score 1) 151

No, that's not true at all. Spoken words are comprised of 0 letters or characters, they are comprised only of sounds (phones). Other languages have fully-ideographic written forms.

I would say it differently: a word is something with at least one widely-used verbal representation (making allowances for accents, variation in voice, and tomato-"tomahto" differences).

We generally don't consider a real-life smile a word, even though that's a well-understood form of visual communication. The middle finger or "okay" hand-sign isn't a word either, even though they have different meanings in different cultures, just like regular words.

Of course, by that argument I think ":)" is, arguably, a word, with a less-used variant spelling of "smiley".

Comment Re:"Transposition error" (Score 1) 366

That's called a transcription error or typo, not a transposition error.

In a transposition error all the right keys are typed in the wrong order. In a transcription error, the wrong keys are pressed but otherwise the order is correct.

We all understand the summary, so on that level it worked, but we can't argue they used the right term because they didn't.

Comment Re:You're pretty much all wrong (Score 1) 728

Americans were not opposed to the Afghanistan invasion after 9/11, what are you talking about? Support was near-universal even among groups that generally advocate peace. Some people *today* are tired and think it was a mistake in retrospect but they didn't think that in 2001 or for the most part even in 2010.

By contrast, the Iraq war was widely (though *not* universally) considered a mistake very quickly. Yet public opinion has barely shifted since shortly after it started, in contrast to Afghanistan where it was near universal and is now closing in on 50/50 in retrospect (and using polls that include people who were small children at the time of 9/11).

Comment Re:So what? (Score 1) 154

He didn't say they don't want it, or that they wouldn't benefit from it, he said they don't have it. It's an educational effort.

If the town wants to continue to exist, or have an economy that can support the old people, they should figure out how to. A small town where literally everybody is over 70 doesn't actually work, economically speaking.

Whether this particular effort is useful I don't know.

Comment Re:Are you trolling or just boring? (Score 1) 258

I wouldn't be convinced that the first generation won't change lanes when safe to avoid obstacles. After all, that's something they have to do even in normal driving scenarios. Suppose there is a car stopped on the road up ahead after an accident. The car isn't going to stop and wait for hours for the obstruction to clear, it's just going to change lanes. The computer is constantly taking in information from multiple vectors so decision-making time isn't a factor. If a sudden obstruction appears ahead, it seems like brake + lane change is going to happen.

"Consider a spherical bear, in simple harmonic motion..." -- Professor in the UCB physics department