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Comment Re:Solution? (Score 1) 121

The real problem is they are looking at written data. Sarcasm is based on auditory and visual cues of the person. Detecting sarcasm online is like looking for a needle in a haystack when you don't know what a needle or hay is.

To some degree yes, but there are still satirical works of literature throughout history such as Swift's A Modest Proposal that would pose a similar problem. The problem in understanding sarcasm or satire without the visual or vocal cues relates to understanding meaning (a difficult problem in its own right) as well as why a particular response is absurd given the context, which means you also have to know what the expected or typical answer should look like.

Both of you are right... and wrong. The problem is that most people don't know how to write - and thus what they mean as (what they misunderstand to be) sarcasm doesn't come across as such. That's the real problem the researchers are facing, lack of ability to convey meaning, not lack of context.

Comment Re:Uh... let me think about it (Score 2) 396

I have never figured out how any adult could possibly not know how to read a map. It just seems so blindingly obvious. You simply look at the damn thing. Isn't visual pattern recognition humanity's greatest advantage?

No, you don't simply "look at the damn thing". You also have to be able to relate the information on the map to landmarks in the real world - a much more difficult proposition not only because the real world is a spatial relationship problem (as compared to the pattern relationship problem of the map), but also because those spatial relationships are subject to perception as well.
 
I wish I could find a link to the studies I saw back in the 90's where they asked random people to draw a map of their hometown - and very few bore much relationship to each other or to the real world. Long routes were often drawn as short ones - especially if it was a route the person drawing the map drove frequently. Familiar areas took up large areas on the map, often in great detail, while the unfamiliar interstitials were compressed or absent. (Etc... etc...)
 
For example; back in my hometown new folks often had problems navigating via map because the city's 'cultural' map is rotated counter-clockwise nearly forty five degrees from the real world. Basically the road that ran out of the original settlement ran NW-SE, but folks called it the "North road" and the "South road". Two hundred and fifty years later, street names and business names still represent this convention in contravention to what you'd think based on their map directions and position. In the town my mom lives in now she lives in "Southside" (so named a century ago when the town was much smaller), but on the map it's actually nearer the north central part of the city. And there too, the residents think of the lion's share of the metro area as being the "south side of town".

Comment Re:Overturn States' Rights? (Score 2) 136

So, when will a California resident be able to purchase a non CARB compliant motor vehicle?

Hopefully, approximately the same time it becomes OK for me to crap on your lawn. Your encrypted messages to your wife don't harm me or the state. Your high-pollution vehicles make it harder for me to breathe.

Comment Re:Sorry Assholes (Score 1) 422

I disagree. If he came in and took over a low UID for the sake of appearances, I'd personally write off a lot of his messages as PR attempts. But to join in through the same route as everyone else to earn his rep by participating, not by owning a low UID*? I respect that.

* But don't underestimate the importance of that. They give you a Ferrari each year on your anniversary.

Comment Re:So what should we do? (Score 2) 562

Also, the (possibly trained) driver isn't going to be the only person to ever sit behind the wheel. Valets, mechanics, and friends will all take turns driving over the years. Is Joe Driver going to remember that the pattern he's learned and committed to muscle memory over months of driving is unexpected, and to warn everyone he gives the keys to? This is bad UI, pure and simple.

Comment Re:I am not a physicist but... (Score 1) 334

China is also dumping US 1960's-style money in to scientific research and development. Of the three major space-faring countries, China, Russia, and the USA, you'll note that only China and Russian currently have manned spaceflight programs.

China is a major space faring nation? Only by comparison with the minors... In reality, China's space program is just big enough to convince people they're a "major" space faring nation and not a Fen's worth more.

Comment RFTA - this has not been peer reviewed (Score 4, Insightful) 334

Very exciting until you see that the results have not been verified in any way.

If the claim is true, I would be very interested in reading how it was accomplished and what were the conditions. I would be particularly interested in finding out if the heat was contained or if energy was being continually driven into the system.

Claims are just that until verified and the apparatus and results are published.

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