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Rare Ideopathic Encephaly Tied to Higher IQ, Not Lower 58

Timothy writes Cranial deformation is commonly linked to brain dysfunction; it is one of the most common serious conditions affecting fetal growth. Multiple factors are involved, but in nearly every case on record the result is debilitating; stillbirth or neonatal death are common. A mutation, though, has been observed among members of a New Jersey family which represents a rare case of heritable encephaly tied not to dysfunction, but to higher-than-average intelligence, and with no evident negative health consequences.

Donald R. DeCicco (not his real name) and his wife Prymaat of Paramus, both French-born naturalized U.S. citizens, were born with unremarkable physical characteristics, apart from a specific constellation of physical abnormalities affecting maxillofacial and brain development. In both of their cases, brain development appears to be ordinary, but with all brain lobes occupying a volume that is both larger and narrower than typical. All medical tests (and the couple's success as educated, productive members of society) make it clear that their condition has not prevented ordinary life, and may even have enhanced it; a series of MRI and PET scans conducted by Johns Hopkins researchers indicated that their above-average cerebella are at least as active and neuron-rich as are more run-of-the-mill subjects' brains, and tests of memory, cognition, and reasoning place both DeCicco and Clorhone in the top percentile of American rest subjects. A daughter, Connie, shares both their unusual skeletal growth pattern, and is similarly highly intelligent; perhaps this form of heritable encephaly should be thought of as akin to Marfan syndrome, for its pairing of both high intelligence and a characteristic bone-growth pattern. At least one researcher quoted in the linked article believes that less extreme forms of the same anomaly can be observed in some historical and contemporary figures, citing as examples both Vladimir Putin and actor Richard Belzer as bearing some tendency toward the same characteristic shape.

First described by a family physician and described in the Journal of the Society of the Federal Health Professionals,the condition has been labeled Sandler's Syndrome.
News

Parents Sue School After Pod Daughter Is Banned From Prom 33

With the prom season only a few months away kids and parents alike are starting to make plans for the big day. However, one girl's alien replacement might not get a chance to experience that special day if a school district has its way. Even though Darcy Swope's pod duplicate is virtually identical to her, the Santa Mira school district has decided she is not welcome to prom. School officials acknowledge the duplicate attended school and did Darcy's homework for an unknown period of time but say she isn't really a student and therefore doesn't belong at the dance. Darcy's parents disagree with the decision and have filed suit against the school, Her dad says, "We miss Darcy every day, but the thing that consumed her and is now pretending to be my daughter is almost the same and deserves to be treated the same." "She may not have that sparkle in her eye or the vocabulary as our flesh and blood daughter, but she has never missed curfew and has a thirst to learn. It would be a shame if Darcy II didn't get a chance to experience this important part of being human, even if she isn't one," adds her mother.
News

V'Ger Source Code Released 53

One of the biggest hurdles to interstellar domination has always been the prohibitive cost of proprietary software for ships or super-weapons. That is all about to change thanks to a surprise move by a mysterious alien race of living machines who have released V'ger's source code. While you'll still need a way to generate a "twelfth-power energy field," this opens the door to many would-be conquerors and ultimate weapon enthusiasts. The release has been praised in terms of increased security and reduced costs by most, but some worry that cheaper, more secure super weapons aren't what the universe needs at this time. Federation spokesperson Lieutenant Ilia disagrees saying: "This is in the carbon units best interest. Many worlds have been infested, You will listen to me."

Comment So.. (Score 1) 406

When we inevitable lose the battle (the government does have a tendency to get their way in these things), do we get to reap the benefits of a total information society? I mean, will there be a searchable database where I can find out where I left my keys? That link to that awesome video i saw on sometube.com that i can't remember? If i remembered to feed the cat?

Comment article summary is wrong (Score 5, Informative) 51

The article summary is completely wrong -- it mentions "while you're in coverage", to mean that you can leave the device connected to the network.

But from TFA: "Plane passengers will be allowed to use electronic devices weighing less than a kilogram in offline mode from gate to gate without needing to turn them off. The devices will need to remain in flight mode and cannot be used for calls, text or data, however."

So, all this really does is confirm the findings that the FAA had -- small devices are reasonable to use in airplane mode in all phases of flight.

Comment Re:Native Widgets (Score 1) 282

Android and iOS)are weird platforms because they treat all non-native toolits as second class citizens. You are EXPECTED to use Android/iOS APIs for everything. The idea that people might write apps in a non-Google/non-Apple framework simply did not occur to them. They are too busy trying to reinvent the world to bother with anything that is not invented in the hallowed halls of the Goolgeplex or Arcology.

Comment Re:GTK+ is standalone (Score 5, Insightful) 282

"weird dialect of C++98" - WTF? What is this dialect you speak of? Do you need to pass --weird to G++ to get it to compile? Of course not! It's using the same C++ every other C++ app in the world is using. Both C++98 and C++11 are supported. It doesn't REQUIRE you to use C++11, but that is a benefit not a drawback.

"it has its own object model" - Of course it does, that's because C++ does not have one of its own. QObject is there to provide for the introspection that C++ lacks. Once you have that introspection you can start communicating with other objects. I fail to understand why this is a disadvantage in your eyes.

"networking stack" - Of course. Why should it not? It is an cross-platform application framework.

"container library" - When Qt began the STL was fragmented, not standardized, and poorly supported. Yet containers are useful. Qt kept them around because they turned out to be better than the STL containers. They're a balance between raw performance and the "bloat" of pure templatized containers. Externally they end up being 100% compatible with the STL.

"threading library" - It was only extremely recent that C++ got its own threading, and it's just very low level threading. Qt threading provides a nice usable wrapper around threads (which are native C++ threads underneath if built with C++11), and the ability to easily communicate between threads with signals/slots.

"graphics primitive library" - Why not? Seriously, why not? Isnt't that the whole point of a GUI toolkit? Underneath it draws widgets using the native controls, if available, or uses its own if not. That's why the widgets look like native controls on Windows and Mac, because they ARE native controls! On X11 it will draw its own. It doesn't use Cairo, why should it use Cairo, who made Cairo king that we all have to bow down before it?

Comment Re:GTK+ is a C library (Score 4, Insightful) 282

When it comes to the UI, objects are natural. Every C toolkit goes through hoops to provide you with objects of some kind. Motif, GTK, etc. So why not just use an object oriented language to begin with?

You don't have to use the dark corners of the language. Qt sticks to just the Object Oriented parts of C++, with just a tiny bit of templates. Not a functor in sight (unless you wander toward the totally optional Qt::Concurrent framework). Internally it uses all of the language, but as an API it provides just the object oriented subset.

Comment Re:Ahhh ... (Score 1) 196

The shareholders hired Elop. The shareholders kept Elop on. It will be the shareholders who approve the buyout. And it will be the shareholders who vote to reward Elop.

So yes the sharehodlers are getting the shaft, but they're asking for it. I don't understand the motivation behind bondage and dominance, but who am I to judge the shareholders' sexual proclivities?

Comment Re:Defending tuf (Score 1) 298

Precisely! The price if a good is whatever the seller and buyer can agree on. The labour theory of value is wrong. The cost theory of value is wrong. Things are only worth what we think they are worth. There's stuff like marginal utility, supply and demand curves, etc., but they are just fancy ways of saying that something is only worth what someone will pay for it. Even that $200 textbook, if we didn't value the textbook more than $200 we wouldn't buy it, and would resort to alternatives instead.

p.s. Actually we're not paying high prices for textbooks, we're paying high prices for college courses to which textbooks are attached.

"What people have been reduced to are mere 3-D representations of their own data." -- Arthur Miller

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