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Submission + - Chinese TV station replaced its meteorologist with a chatbot (washingtonpost.com)

Earthquake Retrofit writes: “[She is] very hard-working!” said Song Jiongming, news director of Shanghai Media Group, which runs Dragon TV, in an email interview. “Xiaoice works more efficiently than human forecasters.”

When the anchor on “Morning News” needs a weather report, he introduces Xiaoice (pronounced shao-ice), a computer program that delivers the forecast with a female voice and is programmed to include a personal, human touch.

Xiaoice originated as a creation of Microsoft’s artificial intelligence team in China, which wanted to make an online service that would answer users’ questions and add an emotional, human touch.

Submission + - Microsoft Ending Support for Windows 8, Internet Explorer 7-10

SmartAboutThings writes: Customers who rely on Microsoft's Windows 8 and Internet Explorer versions 7, 8, 9 and 10, will be sad to hear that the operating system and the Web browsers will reach the end of the line for support. The software will no longer receive security updates, thus leaving users open to malware and attackers targeting unpatched vulnerabilities. All Windows 8 users are being asked to upgrade to Windows 8.1 or Windows 10 and all Internet Explorer version need to upgrade to IE 11, except for Windows Vista users, who can stick with IE 9.

Submission + - First children have been diagnosed in 100,000 Genomes project (bbc.com)

Zane C. writes: The 100,000 Genomes project, an organization dedicated to diagnosing and researching rare genetic disorders, has just diagnosed its first 2 patients. After painstakingly analyzing about 3 billion base pairs from the parents of one young girl, and the girl herself, "doctors told them the genetic abnormality — in a gene called KDM5b — had been identified". The new information will not yet change the way the young girl, named Georgia, is treated, but it opens up a path for future treatments. For the other girl, Jessica, the genetic analysis provided enough information to diagnose and begin a new treatment. A mutation had occurred "[causing] a condition called Glut1 deficiency syndrome in which the brain cannot get enough energy to function properly." Jessica's brain specifically had not been able to obtain enough sugar to power her brain cells, and as such, doctors prescribed a high fat diet to give her brain an alternate energy source. She has already begun showing improvement.

Submission + - Wikipedia's unhappy 15th birthday

Andreas Kolbe writes: Just as Wikipedia is about to turn 15 years old, relations between the Wikimedia Foundation (WMF) board and the volunteer community have reached a new nadir. As Bill Beutler reports on his insider blog, The Wikipedian, it began with the removal of volunteer editor Dr James Heilman from the WMF board. Heilman is a popular figure, noted for his work on Wikipedia's medical articles, and the news of his expulsion was greeted with shock and disbelief by the almost 2,000 volunteers who had voted for him. Then it transpired that the WMF is working on a secretive "Knowledge Engine" project funded by a restricted grant from the Knight Foundation. The move, which has raised worries about the possibility of undue Google influence on WMF affairs, is unpopular even among the Foundation's paid staff. Their confidence in the board's strategic direction and transparency has plummeted, as Wikipedia's community newspaper, the Signpost, reports. Lastly, the WMF announced the appointment of Arnnon Geshuri, former Senior Director of HR and Staffing at Google, to the WMF board. Volunteers and ex-WMF board members have criticised the appointment, pointing to Geshuri's past involvement in anticompetitive hiring agreements at Google, which led to a class-action lawsuit resulting in a $415 million settlement. They want Geshuri gone.

Comment Re:Next, be a woman (Score 1) 386

My point was simply that you can't generalise

My point is that you can generalise. I.e. that green1's statment was correct.

"Oh well, at least you weren't murdered"

I'd say "I'm glad you're alive," instead of "Oh you survived, too bad, your life will suck from now on."

Stating that some victims will feel that way is not the same as stating that victims should feel that way.

No, but stating that rape is as bad as murder will make some victims feel that way.

Comment Re:Next, be a woman (Score 1) 386

So no one old has ever been murdered shortly before they'd have died anyway?

You're comparing rape with a killing someone on their death bed. Sure, people have been killed right before they would have died, but that does not make rape worse than murder. By that logic you can say that bullying and teasing is as bad as murder, because there are people that would rather die than be bullied.

If I was lying on my deathbed in great agony and a man came in and gave me the choice of rape/murder, I'd pick murder. So yes, it's possible to think up scenarios where murder is the lesser evil. But it's contrived. People generally aren't raped on the deathbed. Instead it's, say, between a man raping or killing your teenage daughter. In the former she "may" kill herself, while in the latter she "can't" get her life back in order because she's dead. I.e. rape is the lesser evil.

Those problems are going to persist - you can't just make them go away with kind words, you can't simply pretend that everyone will be able to live a normal life after such an event - that just builds a society where we don't talk about it and blame the victim if they're acting a bit weird for a day.

I think you're misunderstanding me. I'm not saying that one should blame the victim of rape or not talk about it. Saying murder is worse than rape is not victim blaming.

Your trivialisation of the impacts on victims belong in the past, please leave them there.

Rape isn't trivial, but implying that people should just as well be dead because they were raped pisses me off. People have killed themselves over such attitudes.

Comment Re:Next, be a woman (Score 3, Insightful) 386

No, no they can't..

"Can" in this context does not mean "will". Yes, there are rape victims that kill themselves, but he's not saying anything against that.

I'd have a hard time buying the idea that the murder of a 70 year old man who lived a full life and who had terminal cancer and only 6 months to live is somehow worse for the victim than a woman that's had to live her life with non-stop memories

A rather contrived scenario. I too know without a doubt which victim I'd rather be. And that's alive, thank you very much, don't pick for me.

In contrast, a girl who slept with a guy and then changed her mind afterwards and then decided to cry rape, and lived in a country where that is legally acceptable to do so (Hi Sweden), probably wont have the slightest bit of trauma to suffer at all other than maybe a bit of regret about sleeping with "that guy"

Research have shown that people can suffer trauma from make-belief fantasies. Conversely people can be brutally abused and not suffer any trauma at all. People are complex, yes.

"Well, rape is not as bad as murder because you can just live a normal life afterwards" - no, just no. Stamp that idea out right the fuck now, it's so utterly wrong.

No it's utterly right. In fact, attitudes like these causes trauma in rape victims. Believing themselves to be damaged goods and worthless.

Comment Re:Sigh. (Score 1) 175

My grandma has a phone with a single button for making an alarm call. It's straight forwards, easy to use, and promptly forgotten in any emergency situation. Features like these are fine on paper, but unless you call 911/the police often you will forget them in a panic.

If movies and TVs always showed people pressing "the emergency button" instead of "911", then people might use it.

Comment Re:Doom was good... (Score 1) 225

Marathon has a humoristic story going for it, but the gameplay is crud. This while Doom is as fun today as it was in 1993. If not for being a mac exlusive game, and Halo, Marathon would have been quickly forgotten.

Comment Brutal Doom (Score 2) 225

Neat, I'll have to check it out. Wonder if it works with Brutal Doom.

Brutal Doom is possibly the best Doom mod ever. Check out this review.

Had a ton of fun with it. It's not extra levels, instead you play the same old levels with smarter monsters, heavier weapons and extreme brutality. The latter seems silly now, it's all just sprites, but I wonder how that would have been received in 1993.

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