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Comment: Re:Maybe the Muslims will help us out... (Score 1) 173

by eihab (#32861622) Attached to: NASA's Plutonium Supply Dwindling; ESA To Help

That ad-hominem was added after a fairly lengthy post including several points. It doesn't surprise me that you've decided to ignore them all and skip straight to the last line.

I skipped to it because it seemed that I was going to waste my breath talking into the void (AC's do not get notified about replies, do they?).

Just so as you know, Einstein was also deeply religious, he saw his study of the natural world as being an investigation into the methods of God. Given that you seem to think that he was less religious than Newton (if such a thing could be quantified) then you are once again mistaken about the nature of a person you are referring to.

I'm aware of that. I do not have a direct quote, nor do I care to search for one. I was simply trying to get a point across that when we say "only god knows this", it means we're giving up and are not going to investigate further.

*Part 1, I have to head out, and I will get back to you in 6-7 hours from now*

Comment: Re:Maybe the Muslims will help us out... (Score 1) 173

by eihab (#32860692) Attached to: NASA's Plutonium Supply Dwindling; ESA To Help

In conclusion, you don't sound very educated in either science, philosophy or your religion. I suggest a spot of reading before firing that mouth of yours off any further.

Wonderful, an ad hominem attack from an AC. Please create an account so that we can have a discussion instead of one-off posts (I wonder if you'll ever see this).

Al-Ghazali was probably the greatest thinker mankind has ever produced, and the implication that he took science backwards is just plain wrong.

Greatest thinker mankind has ever produced? No comment. But, no, I still stand behind him taking Islamic science backwards.

The period I criticized him for is 1095, when he threw science and scientific investigation out the window and replaced it with Sufism and revelation as the only way to truly understand the universe. When he said "there was no way to certain knowledge or the conviction of revelatory truth except through Sufism". That right there to me is throwing in the towel and calling it quits.

What do you think the repercussions on the Islamic scientific community were when he spent the last 16 years of his life being "technically" a preacher? What did he discover while repeating the "divine names" (dhikr) all day?

I'm not saying Islam or religion itself is bad (I probably lost our Atheists here), but the effect of inhibiting science and discovery by giving up and relying on the divine to truly understand the world is devastating to science. Didn't God say in Quran that we should learn math? (Al-Isra 12). And no, I'm not of the school that interprets "Hisab" as reckoning instead of math (but that's a different discussion).

Where would the world be today if Einstein or Newton spent more time in the Synagogue/Church and gave up on science?

Ok, maybe Newton is somewhat of a bad example since he also said "Gravity explains the motions of the planets, but it cannot explain who set the planets in motion. God governs all things and knows all that is or can be done". Maybe we would have learned a lot more about the universe had he not hit that wall, or maybe not.

Anyway, I have more important things to do with my time than to go and get Montgomery Watt's book to investigate and argue this point further. I might do it someday, but for the time being, I'm taking Neil Degrasse's and my own interpretation of what happened during that period of time over the AC who's "very familiar with his work" on Slashdot. mmkay?

Comment: Re:Maybe the Muslims will help us out... (Score 5, Insightful) 173

by eihab (#32858532) Attached to: NASA's Plutonium Supply Dwindling; ESA To Help

Thanks! and I whole-heatedly agree with you!

I recently watched The Unthinkable (if you haven't watched it, it's a great movie), and as to not spoil it for anyone, all I can say is that I was sitting at the edge of my seat and rooting for Samuel Jackson throughout the movie.

Bin Laden is an a$$hole, and the 72 virgins (myth) will be well-hung top-men scavenging his and his goons' cavities while slow-roasting them to perfection (yes I hate them as much as you do, probably even more so).

The stories that have been hitting Slashdot about censorship in Pakistan and other Islamic countries gathered quite a few "look at them backwards Muslims", instead of generating empathy about the sad state of these countries.

I should know, I lived in a couple of them growing up. People are afraid for their lives and cannot speak up. People can't discuss politics in coffee shops, because that guy smoking hooka is new and he might be from internal affairs, and if he marks you, your family won't even know what happened to you (Egyptian NSA-equivalent calls it "sending someone behind the sun").

America used to be the great nation everyone there talked about. It was wonderland, where you can criticize leaders and "be alive the next day". Where your creed and background did not matter, only what you knew and what you can do.

But somehow when we started meddling with their affairs, we became the villain. There's an Arabic saying that goes something like "Me and my brother would fight my cousin if he does us wrong, but if a stranger comes in, my cousin and I will team up".

The solution is _not_ to go into these countries with military force to "spread freedom", the solution is to stand up against tyranny with words, show them an example of democracy over here and not to co-operate with their regimes to oppress people.

Final words: Any kind of zealotry (religious/nationalistic/software) is ignorant, and I hope that I see a world without hatred before my time is up here. I doubt it, but I'm still an optimist inside and one can dream.

Comment: Re:Maybe the Muslims will help us out... (Score 5, Insightful) 173

by eihab (#32857858) Attached to: NASA's Plutonium Supply Dwindling; ESA To Help

You have issues dude. I identify myself as Muslim and it's a creed, but science-wise "Muslims" (Middle East) have lost it (i.e. stop being mad about it).

Yes, Algebra and Algorithm are Arabic words traced to the amazing Mohammed Ibn Musa Al-Khawarizmi (who was "Persian" btw, yes, the people we intend to bomb), and f#@king YES, India was there first.

But that doesn't take from him (or his civilization/creed) the right to call the names.

(For the purposes of this post, I will interchange creed and civilization, even though they're far-far-FAR from being the same thing).

It's a phenomenon Neil Degrasse Tyson describes as "Naming Rights" (I'm no scholar, so maybe it has another name). But basically, when a nation/region excels and innovates, they get the right to name their discoveries and they effectively "own" them.

Why is the rest of the world using .hk, .uk and .whatever domains? Why is the US the only country that enjoys .gov, .mil and .edu without a trailing .us?

Because, this s$#t was invented here, and "we"* earned it.

Jupiter, Venus, Mars, Pluto.. all Greek mythology names, why? They were "it"** back in the day.

So, what happened to the Muslim world? Well, Al-Ghazali decided to take them 300 years back into oblivion.

No scientist/mathematician/programmer/thinker/etc. would ever express prejudice. Empathy and sorrow for ignorance, maybe, but not hatred.

Now... where are we? We have racism (been to AZ lately?), prejudice (Muslim/Jew/*INSERT RELIGION* haters) and a whole lot more.

A lot of Americans do not believe in evolution or other scientifically proven facts. We kill our enemies for our "god-given" rights and we (the majority of us) want religion taught in school.

I wonder if GWB was our "Al-Ghazali", or maybe it will be Obama. Whomever it is, we must stop it and freaking move forward. Otherwise, we're fscked. We'll be the nation that our grandchildren and history talks about as "they invented XYZ, but muhahaha, look at them barbarians." And the elite nations at the time will nuke the ish out of them for being so backwards.

I want us to prevail, but with attitudes like yours and the extreme ignorance level the populace have, I'm afraid it's already too late.

I better start learning Chinese (Ni Hao) :(

And finally; to be on-topic; NASA needs to get some more of that "shiz-nit" :P

----
* I'm kind of one of you("us") now!
** A.K.A. The $h#t

Comment: Re:Maybe missing the point (Score 2, Insightful) 263

by eihab (#32828088) Attached to: SSDs vs. Hard Drives In Value Comparison

The GP might have missed the point, but you certainly did. Let me put it more bluntly: Comparing the price of an ssd to a disk by $/GB is idiotic.

I think they missed the point because you did not include a car analogy. Here, let me try to help:

Comparing the price of an SSD to a rotational hard drive by dollar/GB is akin to comparing a small sedan to a Ferrari based on dollar/mile for all the miles driven over the lifetime of the vehicles.

Sure, the sedan will cost WAY less and you'll probably drive it more than the Ferrari, but try putting them on the race track and see what happens.

Obviously you do not buy a Ferrari to commute in (unless you're John Carmack), and likewise you shouldn't buy an SSD to store your warez/mp3z and pr0n on.

Comment: Re:Wow (Score 1) 312

by eihab (#32813498) Attached to: The Unstoppable 'Tech Support' Scam

You would be surprised how many there are. I work as a network admin and I have dealt with some .... interesting?.... people.

I worked for a web hosting company before where one of our clients was having supposed issues with their mailing list, they said some users were not receiving messages sent to the list.

I checked out the mailing list code (it was an in-house solution) and then looked through the mail servers' log files and found nothing in there that supports their claims. So, I decided to email the mailing list to get to the bottom of this. I introduced myself and asked everyone to reply to me if they received the message because we're "debugging" this issue.

I think out of a couple of hundred users only a handful actually followed the instructions and responded directly to me. The rest of them decided to use the magical "reply-all" button and caused havoc.

One fun user (with an @aol.com email address nevertheless) took the cake on this one though. S/He kept replying-all to "each and every reply" that was sent by other members. The emails were one-liners like:

- It's working, I got the email.
- I got this message.
- Got another one!
- I got this one too!
- I'm getting the message!

S/He sent close to 50 emails that day. It was hilarious and somehow sad at the same time. I lost faith in humanity that day.

Comment: It's about Cherry Picking. (Score 3, Insightful) 507

by eihab (#32750506) Attached to: Fark Creator Slams 'the Wisdom of Crowds'

Slashdot is not so different, there are some pretty useless comment here. Hell, I make a lot of them on occasion myself.

But if you read between the lines and "cherry pick", there are usually hidden gems about a software package, a piece of advice or something truly fascinating.

The noise to signal ratio is what matters, and on Slashdot it is better some days than others but in general it's a lot better than a lot of other sites. Some sites like YouTube or even to some extent Digg have almost no added value in their comments and the "noise" is pretty high.

It's not just about the freshest content (which is why I think a lot of people frequent Digg or Hacker News), the comments are what makes a user-generated-content site work... at least for me.

That's why I keep coming back here.

Comment: Re:Ad-supported? (Score 1) 434

by eihab (#32738806) Attached to: Subscription-Based 'Hulu Plus' Is Now Official

Considering they'll be streaming larger amounts of data than they do now. I assume the invitation is so they can slowly roll out the service, working out the kinks and installing new servers as necessary with a very reduced customer population. Much easier than having to be *absolutely* sure that everything is *perfect* before setting the doors wide open...perfect and absolute are pretty damn hard, there's always unforeseen shit in rolling out gargantuan systems like that.

The blog post/invitation page wasn't really clear about if they will charge those "beta" users or not. They should spell it out clearly and not charge the people who will beta test this.

I would assume that they wouldn't need to do a whole lot of testing since all they're doing is giving the Plus users access to more content. Their main issue will be bandwidth, but that's what the subscription fee and ads are for, right?

Anyway, what I find outrageous is the pricing+ads, the invitation was really just the icing on the cake.

Comment: Re:Ad-supported? (Score 1) 434

by eihab (#32738774) Attached to: Subscription-Based 'Hulu Plus' Is Now Official

uhmm, all google services are ad supported too. I won't be paying for hulu any time soon either, but the invitation model for ad supported services has precedents. If anything the weird thing is being "invited" to sign up and pay a monthly fee.

Ok, let me try to re-highlight this:

You mean to tell me you have to wait for an invitation to a paid for product that's ad-supported? What are they thinking?

Better?

Comment: Re:Ad-supported? (Score 1) 434

by eihab (#32736886) Attached to: Subscription-Based 'Hulu Plus' Is Now Official

Where's Weeds/Big Love/True Blood, or whatever people are watching nowadays?

Those are all on $15/month channels. People who are willing to pay for quality shows are already doing that.

Weeds is on Netflix, I think up to season 5. My wife and I discovered and got hooked on it for a while, and being able to stream an entire season over a few days with no commercials or season interruptions is amazing.

Even with Cable, we record everything on our DVR and watch it whenever we get around to it.

The TV model is dead as far as I'm concerned, I just do not have the time to watch a 20 minutes show over a 45 minutes period because of all the commercials.

I won't pirate, so if it's not on Netflix or it's not recorded on my DVR then I won't bother watching it.

Comment: Ad-supported? (Score 4, Insightful) 434

by eihab (#32735846) Attached to: Subscription-Based 'Hulu Plus' Is Now Official

You mean to tell me you have to wait for an invitation to a paid for product that's ad-supported? What are they thinking?

Their collection of shows do not seem that impressive either. Where's Weeds/Big Love/True Blood, or whatever people are watching nowadays?

I have a hard time believing that this is going to go anywhere. My $10 a month stays with Netflix, color me unimpressed.

Comment: Re:It's kinda sad... (Score 1) 213

by eihab (#32716560) Attached to: Khan Academy Delivers 100,000 Lectures Daily

Actually, I usually insert an R into that. I'll leave it to you to figure out where.

What is ASCAPR? :P

On a serious note, Khan Academy is wonderful. I only wish the content could be organized in a prerequisite manner across different topics (e.g. basic algebra before calculus, etc.). I guess I'll check the issue tracker, and maybe even send a patch or two :)

Comment: Re:this is anything but new (Score 1) 321

by eihab (#32655130) Attached to: Apple Quietly Goes After Mac Trojan With Update

He reported it and attempted to negotiate a 60 day patch release. When those negotiations failed, he released the information to allow end users to disable the hcp handler in order to protect themselves

Two problems with this postmortem explanation:

a) He didn't have to be such a d*ck about it on the mailing list when he was asked why did he do this. His response was basically "If you are asking me then you're uninformed and you should know better."

b) How about calling Microsoft and saying: "Ok, I'm trying to negotiate 60 days for a patch to no avail. You have 30 days now instead of 60, and if you do not patch this I'm posting it on full-disclosure." Then he could have blogged about it and made MS look like $hit.

If MS was this horrible repeat offender that sits on patches forever like he implied in his follow up posts, why did he contact them to begin with? He could have just went to full-disclosure and said "MS sucks, they never listen to me, here's the vulnerability, good luck MS".

There are so many scenarios that he could have taken to avoid all this heat. It's unfortunate that he chose to do what he did.

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