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Comment: Re:It's BIAS, stupid. (Score 1) 502

by denzacar (#47512285) Attached to: Experiment Shows People Exposed To East German Socialism Cheat More

I assume you have never had an Intro to Stats class. If you have, you didn't deserve to pass it. I suggest you look up a difference between two means test and categorical variables in regression.

I'm assuming here that you misunderstood this part. Though you quoted the entire post. Slashdot Beta?

Also, East-West bias can be noted in the stats measured and stats assumed.
No regression calculation was reported for West German family, while t-test values were always fixed (i.e. assumed) for East Germans and always calculated for West Germans.
And there's that thing of "East German family background" being marked with a 0 and "West German family background" being marked with a 1.
Someone seems to like West Germans better.

I am not talking about a single issue nor am I conflating their t-tests with their probit regressions.
I'm talking about several separate cases in the survey and in the paper where the language and variables used indicate either a pro-West or anti-East bias.
Which is basically code for "NOT-socialist" in this case, as seen below.

By the end of the paper they simply decide that doing calculations for "West German family" variable isn't needed.
"Meh, we found nothing there.
But look! We got this one point in a very small cherry picked sample that PROVES East Germans are cheaters!"

Nor am I misunderstanding surveying for dichotomous, binary, values.
I'm pointing out that the way the values are set up (i.e. a West German family which is a positive 1 and a NOT West German family - a 0) indicates a pro-West bias.
Which alone, doesn't mean much. But when you take in account the the rest of the paper...

Stuff like this:

As an interaction
term of age and family background is not informative in a non-linear model like Probit
we decided to investigate the exposure to socialism by
examining these distinct age cohorts separately.5 In line with the theory that exposure to
socialism impacts dishonesty, differences in cheating are greater in older cohorts. While East
German subjects born after socialism are 19 percent more likely to report the high side of the
die than their West German counterparts, subjects who lived less than 10 years in socialism
were 28 percent more likely, and subjects who lived for 20 years or more in socialism are 65
percent more likely.

I.e. "Because we can't find any proof for our original hypothesis, here's another cherry picked proof for an unrelated hypothesis - never mind the ignoratio elenchi taking place.
Wasn't it obvious we were gunning for a "proof" that socialism promotes cheating and not that a more general definition of East or West German family heritage does?
Why not just jump on another hypothesis as if we were proving that all the time, cause we can't find enough data to back up our claims for the original hypothesis? How about that?"

They had to get the sample down to 41 people (from a sample of 110, from a population of 259 - note how they only had 90 East Germans a table ago) in order to get ANY significant result regarding the age - cause that's what they are proving now.
That AGE of the subject matters and NOT his/her family heritage they've been talking about the whole time.

AND there is NO (zero, zip, nada, keine...) data presented for West Germans in that same period.
Apparently, there were no West Germans in 1970s but there were at least 41 East Germans.

That's cherry picking and replacing of the original argument with a different one, which though it sounds similar is ultimately irrelevant to the original hypothesis.

Plus they are misrepresenting results for other marginal effects of their probit regression - quoting them THOUGH they are not statistically significant for the p-value they've set up.
The link to the paper is in the summary. Go look it up.

Comment: It's BIAS, stupid. (Score 4, Insightful) 502

by denzacar (#47506505) Attached to: Experiment Shows People Exposed To East German Socialism Cheat More

But thanks for showing it.

Study was done on 259 Germans.
Out of which "90 subjects reported having an East German family background and 98 subjects having a West German family background."

Too small a sample size to be of any use? Indeed.
They are way out in the "our numbers mean diddly-squat" territory, as their margins of error are 7.82% (WGFB) and 8.36% (EGFB).

I.e. when they report 9% and 19% average cheating that's actually 9 +/- 7.82% and 19 +/- 8.36%.
It could just as well be that WGFB are cheating 16% of the time while EGFB are cheating only 11% of the time.
Oh damn! Now it means that "because democracy, stupid", levels of interpersonal trust are lowered in the west.

They all rolled the dice only 40 times. A fair dice should give an average mean of 3.5.
They report average mean for "East German family background" (90 people) to be 3.83.
For "West German family background" (98 people) they report an average mean of 3.68.
But when you sample those same Germans whether they CONSIDER THEMSELVES East, West or just Germans - simply Germans (141 people) have an average mean of 3.70 while East/West Germans (73 people) have an average of 3.83.

Note how, smaller the sample the more extreme the result gets? That's because the overall sample size is too small.
A couple of people misreporting the results could be throwing the whole thing off.
AND they have a really strange sample of "German family heritage" (37 people), whatever that should mean as East-West was set as a 0-1 choice, who are practically not cheating at all, giving the average of 3.57.
While "others" (i.e. immigrants) cheat the most. 3.85. And yes, they are the smallest sample of only 30 people.

On the other hand... the incentive to cheat was simply not there.
At best, rolling a 6 all the time (i.e. cheating 100%), they'd get 6 Euros in the end. A cup of coffee costs about 4.2 Euros.
So people were supposedly cheating in order to get between 0.07 and 0.35 Euros?

After agreeing to participate, each subject received an envelope with six single 1 EUR coins,
the maximal possible payout on the die task we used to measure cheating. Subjects were then
asked to throw a physical die 40 times.

The payout that subjects ultimately received was determined by selecting one of their
rolls at random, by having the experimenter draw a number from 1 to 40 out of an envelope.
Subjects earned 1 EUR for each dot on this particular roll. If subjects were completely honest,
they would be expected to report deciding on the high side of the die in 50 percent of cases,
and the expected value of the average payout would be 3.50 EUR.

But there was plenty room for false positives as they used physical dice they ASSUMED were fair.
When IRL a dice shorter by 3% on one side gives 6% more results on that side.
And low quality, toy store bought, dice are even worse.

Also, East-West bias can be noted in the stats measured and stats assumed.
No regression calculation was reported for West German family, while t-test values were always fixed (i.e. assumed) for East Germans and always calculated for West Germans.
And there's that thing of "East German family background" being marked with a 0 and "West German family background" being marked with a 1.
Someone seems to like West Germans better.


Experiment Shows People Exposed To East German Socialism Cheat More 502

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the roll-high-or-be-sent-to-siberia dept.
An anonymous reader writes The Economist reports, "'UNDER capitalism', ran the old Soviet-era joke, 'man exploits man. Under communism it is just the opposite.' In fact new research suggests that the Soviet system inspired not just sarcasm but cheating too: in East Germany, at least, communism appears to have inculcated moral laxity. Lars Hornuf of the University of Munich and Dan Ariely, Ximena García-Rada and Heather Mann of Duke University ran an experiment last year to test Germans' willingness to lie for personal gain. Some 250 Berliners were randomly selected to take part in a game where they could win up to €6 ($8). ... The authors found that, on average, those who had East German roots cheated twice as much as those who had grown up in West Germany under capitalism. They also looked at how much time people had spent in East Germany before the fall of the Berlin Wall. The longer the participants had been exposed to socialism, the greater the likelihood that they would claim improbable numbers ... when it comes to ethics, a capitalist upbringing appears to trump a socialist one."

Comment: Re:Let us keep our thoughts with our Kremlin frien (Score 1) 662

by TheRaven64 (#47501911) Attached to: Russian Government Edits Wikipedia On Flight MH17
If you think I'm conservative and pro-gun, then you've clearly never read any of my other posts. In fact, if your entire reply is not just an ad hominem, but one attacking views that are diametrically opposed to the ones that I've publicly stated on numerous occasions, I can only assume that you are completely lacking any meaningful responses.

Comment: Re:Let us keep our thoughts with our Kremlin frien (Score 5, Insightful) 662

by TheRaven64 (#47499371) Attached to: Russian Government Edits Wikipedia On Flight MH17

Russia or the separatists in Eastern Ukraine might have done this

That's a distinction without a difference.

although no-one is sure what they would stand to gain from it.

It looks like they thought it was a Ukraine military plane and were a bit too trigger happy, not realising it was a civilian aircraft until too late.

Ukraine's own military might have done it (they've done it before and denied it vehemently until it was proven beyond a shadow of a doubt).

Here's the thing: if the Ukraine were responsible, then Russia would have a vested interest in a visibly transparent investigation and be in a position to ensure that it happened. If they could convincingly portray the Ukraine as having shot down a civilian aircraft then that would significantly alter the political sympathies in the current conflict. Instead, they have done everything in their power to block it.

Comment: Re:This is news? (Score 4, Insightful) 202

The problem is in your phrasing of it as 'government abuses'. In the most part, it's not 'the government', as a monolithic entity acting based on policy that is abusing the power, it's individuals whose abuses are enabled by the government's programs. There's a political split over whether you can trust 'the government', but both sides agree that you probably can't trust an underpaid civil servant with a napoleon complex.

Comment: Re:nice job (Score 2) 102

by TheRaven64 (#47495373) Attached to: "Intelligent" Avatars Poised To Manage Airline Check-In
In general, I'd much rather use the kiosks (or, ideally, check in using the web or a mobile app) than go to a human check-in desk precisely because it presents the information more efficiently and it's a lot faster than a face-to-face interaction would be. The only time I prefer to go to the human-behind-a-desk lines are when I'm doing something unusual (e.g. my flight's delayed enough that I'll miss my connection and I need re-routing[1]) and I need an actual brain on the other side of the conversation (contrary to popular belief, I've found the people at the desks to be very helpful - and quite creative - in this regard). For anything purely routine, don't pretend to be a human, just give me an efficient interface.

[1] Actually, given that this has happened on about 70% of my trips to the USA over the last couple of years, I can't really justify calling it unusual.

Comment: Re:No public drug use (Score 3, Insightful) 471

by TheRaven64 (#47489761) Attached to: World Health Organization Calls For Decriminalization of Drug Use

Yes, I see a problem with pot cafes. Drug use is not OK, just inevitable

What about cafes that serve coffee? You know, the beverage containing a highly addictive drug? Should we ban those too?

The issue with pot cafes is that it's hard for people to work in them without being exposed to passive smoke, but if you can address that then I don't see the difference between them and normal cafes.

Comment: Re:Finally! (Score 4, Interesting) 471

by TheRaven64 (#47489753) Attached to: World Health Organization Calls For Decriminalization of Drug Use

I don't see a contradiction (although I'm not an American). I have no problems with people smoking, snorting, injecting, or otherwise consuming any drugs that they want. I do object if they blow smoke in public areas or leave needles (especially used ones) lying around in public places.

I would be in favour of banning smoking anything in public places (including places of work) and permitting people to take any drugs that they want in their own home. There are some difficult areas (for example, should people with children be allowed to smoke whatever they like at home around their children?) but the general rule of thumb should be that you can do whatever you want to your own body and mind, just don't do it to anyone else.

Comment: Re:That's Ripple (Score 3, Informative) 100

by TheRaven64 (#47489731) Attached to: New Digital Currency Bases Value On Reputation
Not really. Whuffle is more sensible as a currency concept - it's fungible. There's no difference in how you can use Whuffle based on who gave it to you. There are some interesting economics papers based on the idea that anyone can create a mint and the value of its currency would be tracked based on the reputation of the person.

Comment: Re:Derp (Score 4, Informative) 164

by TheRaven64 (#47481865) Attached to: New Mayhem Malware Targets Linux and UNIX-Like Servers
It's difficult to rate-limit login attempts from a botnet. The attack pattern I see on my server is one IP making three login attempts, then another IP making three login attempts, and so on. I do rate limit (via temporary IP blocking) attempts from one IP, but it doesn't help much. Of course, they're all doing password-based login attempts and I disable password-based SSH logins for all Internet-connected machines...

Comment: Re:How does it compare to Unisys MCP ? (Score 1) 59

by TheRaven64 (#47481157) Attached to: SRI/Cambridge Opens CHERI Secure Processor Design

Yup. Compiling for the Burroughs architecture was easier than many segment-based systems, because they allowed segment descriptors to be placed in main memory, with the CPU responsible for tracking the value type by updating a tag. We adapt this slightly so that we only require one tag bit per 256 bits of main memory (the paper describes the implementation of this in some detail, but I'm happy to answer questions) to be able to safely store capabilities in main memory. Our design also allows normal C data structures to work as expected. You can mix C code compiled for MIPS and C code compiled for CHERI in the same binary (though you only get coarse-grained protection in the MIPS code).

The Burroughs architecture had very little impact on the computer architecture community, but was enormously influential in the design of VMs for high-level languages. One of our goals is to pull out the aspects of such VMs that are required for memory protection and put them back in the hardware, so a buggy VM has a far more limited security impact. My student's work on JNI dramatically reduced the amount of C code in the trusted computing base for the JVM implementation that he used.

Comment: Re:Look this gifthorse in the mouth (Score 1) 59

by TheRaven64 (#47481135) Attached to: SRI/Cambridge Opens CHERI Secure Processor Design

The flippant answer is all that your paranoia deserves. The work was undertaken by SRI and The University of Cambridge. The funding was provided by DARPA, but that's the extent of their involvement (other than creating a program with the goal of being able to redesign any aspect of computing with security in mind).

The code is no more or less meriting an independent audit than any other open source code. Less, actually, because we don't anticipate anyone actually using our open source reference implementation in production, we hope that CPU vendors will take the ISA extensions and apply them to their own chips, but we expect that (if they do) they'll do independent reimplementations. At the ISA levels, we have PVS / SAL proofs that we'll be publishing soon that the ISA does provide the desired security properties and you're welcome to audit those too.

Comment: Re:What is BSD good for? (Score 1) 77

by epine (#47479327) Attached to: FreeBSD 9.3 Released

So I am honestly asking, what is BSD good for.

When exactly did "honestly" become a synonym for living under a rock? This question comes up on almost every thread where FreeBSD is mentioned, though granted this is barely more often than its major releases.

The first answer in every such thread for years now is always ZFS, but actually this just disguises how many people have been using it for years or decades and just plain like the way FreeBSD does things even if nine out of ten, or ninety nine out of a hundred, or nine hundred and ninety nine out of a thousand have different tastes.

I get intensely piqued over the implication that there's a nuisance hurdle that needs to be cleared just for existing. When "honestly" becomes a cover story for living under a rock (or an equivalent not-be-bothered-hood) this ultimately seems to resonate as the main implication.

It's especially irritating when FreeBSD predates all the Johnny-come-latelies. It would have needed to be clairvoyant to have correctly decided to not exist, so as not to strain the reputational resources of open source groupthink.

I used to use an axe, but I stopped using it when I had to cut down a tree ten-feet wide at the base. I am presently using a Husqvarna and I am perfectly happy with it but for some reason the axe retains a magical "hard core" allure. So I am honestly asking, what is an axe good for?

Take your work seriously but never take yourself seriously; and do not take what happens either to yourself or your work seriously. -- Booth Tarkington