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Comment: Re:That's nice for the Atlantic (Score 1) 107

by gregmark (#47297227) Attached to: Great White Sharks Making Comeback Off Atlantic Coast

... from what I can tell, the Atlantic is pretty much the cleanest ocean left.

I think they're all pretty dirty and polluted with plastic. The Atlantic has the Sargasso Sea, AKA the Great Atlantic Garbage Dump. Whereas the recently expanded USA marine reserve in the Pacific is considered one of the most pristine regions of all the oceans... for now.

You can't win. Hey, but good news is good news, I'll take it.

Comment: Re:Weed need SIMPLE answers to questions... (Score 1) 264

by gregmark (#39787833) Attached to: Massive Methane Release In the Arctic Region

Well, that's not the point and unless you went to UNH in the early 90's, I doubt you know the content of my *undergraduate* curriculum (ie, no classes on Paleozoic marine life). I do know the answers, although for the most part I can only offer educated guesses of the extemporaneous and non-succinct variety. My point is that articles like this gloss over or avoid entirely some of the underlying principles involved and this leads many people to dismiss the headline which in this case translates to "More methane may be escaping into the environment as a consequence of global warming". Enter the fart jokes.

Sure, science folk and reasonably educated people like me don't require deep background to form opinions, but most people do. Since it's rarely provided, lay readers retreat to their default stance which, more often than not, is to ignore it and possibly support public figures who promote lassiez-faire exploitation of natural resources.

Many of the responses to my original question would have been nice additions to the OL.

Comment: Weed need SIMPLE answers to questions... (Score 2) 264

by gregmark (#39786301) Attached to: Massive Methane Release In the Arctic Region

... that I think naturally come up with stories like this. Despite my science background from college (marine bio, actually, but I never use it), I find it hard to answer questions that true science novices might have such as:

(o) Why is methane bad? It's one of the gases that get trapped in the atmosphere and prevent light from escaping, which warms the planet. Um... I think.

(o) If it floats ups into the upper atmosphere, doesn't it just float into space? Uh.... no. Gravity.... I think.

(o) So those trapped gases must have been in the air at some point, millions of years ago, and then planet did just fine. So what's there to worry about? Uh.....

Sounds great it my brain, but when I vocalize it I realize how easy it is for uninitiated to suspect bullshit and assume there isn't anything to worry about, that this is just a ploy to funnel more money into the coffers of the science research community. Very frustrating.


Nmap 5.20 Released 36

Posted by Soulskill
from the more-and-better dept.
ruphus13 writes "Nmap has a new release out, and it's a major one. It includes a GUI front-end called Zenmap, and, according to the post, 'Network admins will no doubt be excited to learn that Nmap is now ready to identify Snow Leopard systems, Android Linux smartphones, and Chumbies, among other OSes that Nmap can now identify. This release also brings an additional 31 Nmap Scripting Engine scripts, bringing the total collection up to 80 pre-written scripts for Nmap. The scripts include X11 access checks to see if on a system allows remote access, a script to retrieve and print an SSL certificate, and a script designed to see whether a host is serving malware. Nmap also comes with netcat and Ndiff. Source code and binaries are available from the Nmap site, including RPMs for x86 and x86_64 systems, and binaries for Windows and Mac OS X. '"

Comment: Re:Can Oscar's be given posthumously? (Score 1) 967

by gregmark (#24280767) Attached to: Batman Discussion

Because Heath Ledger deserves one.

End of story.

Sorry to be an Oscar party pooper, but that's ridiculous. I'm not saying that he doesn't deserve to be considered - I enjoyed his performance too - but a posthumous presentation shouldn't be preordained any more that a regular humous one. There are many performances yet to be considered. It's July. Seven months to go.

And what about Aaron Eckhart? In many ways, his performance was much more complex and dramatic.


+ - Students busted on piracy charges

Submitted by taoman1
taoman1 (1050536) writes "The music industry is asking 50 Ohio University students to pay $3,000 each to avoid lawsuits accusing them of pirating songs off the Internet. The Recording Industry Association of America asked the university to pass along letters to the students with Internet addresses accused of being involved with the illegal sharing of copyrighted music. The university notified the students on Monday. "The downloading has occurred and we can't change that, but we can let them know what their options are," OU spokeswoman Sally Linder said Wednesday."

+ - New .TEL Domain - Communications Revolution?

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "ICANN just announced the addition of .TEL to the DNS root zone, making it the 15th top level domain under contract with ICANN on the Internet. .TEL isn't a domain extension in the traditional sense. Instead, it is gearing up to become a cutting edge, decentralized, globally accessible and privacy-enhanced contact directory... tel-calling.html"

Journal: Office 2007 Wrecks Outlook Express Spell Check.

Journal by Erris

Ai-Eeee! ca c'est bon, no?:

Much to the delight of Francophiles everywhere, Microsoft's Office 2007 switches Outlook Express spell-checkers to work only in French. Those disposed to communicate in other languages are being advised to use third-party programs.

No, that's not good. Microsoft French is probably worse than mine. I'm glad to be a Kontact user.


Humans Hardwired to Believe in Supernatural Deity? 1852

Posted by Zonk
from the my-genes-rebel dept.
dohcrx writes "According to a Sunday New York Times article, 6 in 10 Americans believe in the devil and hell, 7 in 10 believe in angels, heaven and the existence of miracles and life after death, while 92% believe in a personal God. The article explores the possibility that this belief structure may be ingrained into our genetic makeup. 'When a trait is universal, evolutionary biologists look for a genetic explanation and wonder how that gene or genes might enhance survival or reproductive success ... Which is the better biological explanation for a belief in God — evolutionary adaptation or neurological accident? Is there something about the cognitive functioning of humans that makes us receptive to belief in a supernatural deity?'"