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Comment Separate categories? (Score 1) 1044

It seems to me that the essential conflict here, if you ignore all the "racists vs SJWs" rhetoric, is this:

Some people think science fiction should be primarily about action, inventing amazing new gadgets, and people fighting aliens in space. This is called "hard" SF.

Some people think science fiction (or fantasy) should be more about telling stories that allow the exploration of real-world issues in a world whose cultures, asumptions, and in some cases even the laws of physics or magic, are constructed to throw them into sharp relief. This is called "soft" SF.

While there's some overlap - a notable example being the new Battlestar Galactica show - most authors fall primarily into one or the other camp. So having one set of awards for two genres, many of whose fans on both sides consider them opposed, is like trying to support a one-state solution in Israel / Palestine instead of a two-state solution: naïve.

This is analogous to how some tabletop gamers prefer RPGs that are "crunchy" with a lot of combat and mechanics, and others prefer rules-light systems that tend to gloss over the mechanics a bit. Neither style is "wrong" or "bad", they just may not be be compatible with each other.

I'm not sure whether separate awards for hard SF are the solution, or just separate categories (or a "hard" and "soft" winner in each existing category, maybe). But that's how I see this playing out in an ideal world.

Comment Re:Networking is hard (Score 1) 173

If you're after filtering rather than tracking, OpenDNS has worked well for me in the past, can be installed on the router at location B, and has built-in filtering categories. Also, it's free (but you'll need to make an account to use the filtering). I concur on TeamViewer. I use it to support several hundred clients and it's very reliable, as long as your parents don't close it or uninstall it because they don't know what it is.

Comment Grassroots currencies still need rules. (Score 1) 537

A while ago, a friend of mine came up with his own currency called Aeoni. The original version was the best: One Aeon was equal to one hour of whatever kind of work you like to do. You could trade them with friends as a formalized barter system, on a one for one basis, which avoids the legality problems that supply and demand can create. Later on, he decided that people could charge however many Aeoni they wanted per hour, and that was when the system fell apart.

Comment They listened. (Score 1) 249

We said we wanted digital distribution. Granted, a lot of us said it by using illegal digital distribution, but now there are legal options to rent nearly any popular movie online and I think it's great. But I doubt that Bittorrent or services like it will ever go away unless obscure films become available for streaming as well. Netflix has some, but with older and weirder cinema there are a lot of holes.

Comment Re: Sin and Jesus (Score 1) 1293

The problem here is that you've in essence created a straw man argument. You're saying, "All Christians must believe X" and then asserting that Christianity is a problem because X is false. In reality, a great many liberal Christians do in fact believe in evolution and that's perfectly as it should be. You do not get to dictate what other people are allowed to believe.

Comment Re: Sin and Jesus (Score 1) 1293

That statistic is terrifying, but I would want to see their methodology before assuming it's correct. Nice of you to tell me what I have to believe, but the concept of original sin is entirely absent from the Jewish reading of the garden of Eden story. It is a Christian concept developed later to convince people they "need" Jesus. More importantly, the bible isn't one book or even two... it's 66 booksfif you're looking at a Christian bible or 39 with a Jewish bible. Most of the books have different authors and come from different time periods, so to speak of it as one book is ludicrous. Some of the authors were pro war and others were not; some were misogynistic and others were not. Some of the prophets openly disagree with each other, and there are plenty of other internal contradictions as well, especially if you're ignoring historical context. Yes, the book is violent and sanctions many things we think of as immoral today. However, it also forbids human sacrifice, which was a common practice in ancient times. That makes it revolutionary if you're reading it in context. And it contains plenty of commandments that are just a good idea - treating others with kindness, not lying about people, not stealing or murdering. Our society gets its mores against these things from the Bible. So to say it's worthless is completely missing the point. It contains things that no longer apply to modern life, and also things that do. I find it really interesting that your article doesn't mention interviewing any Jews. From my perspective, the way Christians (and atheists only familiar with Christian doctrine) look at the Bible makes no sense. For someone who sends to be an atheist, you show remarkably little inclination to apply critical thinking to religion. It seems you prefer to resort to generalizations about things you don't know very much about. I'm sorry if you're prejudiced against all religious people because you don't like Christian doctrine, but let me set the record straight on something. You didn't have the right to tell anyone what they should believe it how they should read the bible. Neither does a rabbi. No more than I get to tell you what scientific theories you should prefer. There is more than just one way to interpret scripture, and ultimately as many different ones as there are people willing to engage the text and analyze it for historical, cultural, mystical, religious, psychological or act other level if meaning. It is by no means perfect, but neither is it worthlesss or evil like you so ignorantly suggest. It is a collection of many books, all written by fallible humans who were trying to express what they thought was right. It's also a work of literature that forms one of the most basic foundations of western culture. have you even read it all?

Comment Re:Sin and Jesus (Score 1) 1293

Only if you believe the bible is literally true. Which most believers do not. The bible can still be a holy document with important lessons if it's "only" a myth and not literal history. Which anyone with the most basic critical thinking skills can see that it is, whether they're religious or not.

"I may be synthetic, but I'm not stupid" -- the artificial person, from _Aliens_