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Comment: What about body fat % (Score 2) 409 409

In the age of cheap body fat % measuring devices, why not make body fat % the standard? I'm tall and borderline overweight according to BMI, but I have about 14% body fat percentage. It's much easier to compare across body types with that metric than BMI. Yet I've never had a doctor record my body fat %, only height and weight.

Comment: Re:Chalk (Score 1) 387 387

Good technology use is subtle. You mention whiteboards. This is a perfect example of good technology use. No chalk dust and in most cases the ink is more visible. Simple technologies like recording lectures is another example. We've had cheap video recording for a very long time. Now we have cheap delivery methods of those recordings (youtube). Maybe one day we'll reach the point where someone can do their calculus homework on a pressure-sensitive tablet and have a computer recognize where they made the mistake and explain why it's wrong.

A perfect example of where technology goes wrong is the Pearson mylab products. The technology is not subtle and not flexible. People spend a lot of time screwing around with inputting equations and other issues that don't help with learning. You don't spend time learning, you spend time making the software happy.

Comment: Dice data mining (Score 4, Interesting) 125 125

I have no doubt the submitter is serious, but I think the reality is Dice is just data mining with this post. They want to hear feedback to make money on their main product. There were far fewer of these "I have X skills and need a job" posts pre-dice purchase.

Comment: Re:Scientific American begs to differ (Score 1) 385 385

Maybe this tells us more about intelligence tests than anything. IQ has mostly been dismissed as an end all measure. We now know we can measure a persons intelligence a number of ways. IQ may have been a measure of a very specific type of intelligence, but had little correlation with one's life happiness.

Comment: Re:Mis-use=reviewer don't do their job (Score 2) 208 208

I agree in principle, but the reality is a huge number of reviewers don't really understand the research paper they're reviewing. They are more concerned with things like "no previous research has been done" vs "little previous research has been done" and independence assumptions.

Comment: Re:If all you care about are numbers (Score 1) 201 201

My high school education in Florida (about 10 years ago) consisted of studying for the FCAT and almost nothing else. We'd typically have 1 or 2 dedicated classes in our schedule called "research" or some other euphemism for FCAT where we'd just study for that test. Florida really let down a whole generation of children with that test. I didn't receive a meaningful K-12 education because all we did was study for one test. It took me many remedial classes in college to catch up to where I should have been.

Comment: Re:Well they wanted the results (Score 3, Insightful) 201 201

Statistics and economics. It's always statistics and economics.

The vast majority of decisions and funding in this country come from statistics. Unfortunately, the powers that be rarely have that background and don't understand that most statistics act as a proxy for the underlying issue they are trying to affect. We want "smarter" kids, so we give them a test which measures their "smartness." If their test scores improve, we give the schools more money. What we've actually done is incentivized everyone to cheat and disconnect that proxy measure from the child's "smartness."

That's the problem we have when the administrators of this country have degrees that never required a calculus based stats course. They don't understand the complexity of the numbers and think all numbers are equal.

"Intelligence without character is a dangerous thing." -- G. Steinem