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Comment Re:People are fighting ACTA = Useless (Score 1) 351

which you could theoretically win with as little as ~25% of the national popular vote.

Quicksort "theoretically" runs in O(n^2) time, too. The Electoral College is a vestige of "These United States". It gave the smaller states more clout in the Federal Elections (amongst other things), since they ran the risk of being outshouted by the big states and losing some power when they became states in the union. The idea of the Electoral College doesn't make any more sense than the United States Senate does, yet nobody really talks about how California has the same amount of representation as Montana in a national legislative body.

Comment Re:People are fighting ACTA = Useless (Score 1) 351

I think the general accepted forms of conspiracy are definitions 2, 3, and 4 (and of course, 1). Taking the context in what the GP said, he was talking about the lack of "surreptitious" cooperation on the part of the pro-ACTA parties. When context is provided, definition takes the passenger seat.

Comment Anything but Flash (Score 4, Interesting) 789

If it was anything other than Flash, and anyone other than Apple I'm sure more people would be outraged. To me this is more of Apple's and its control MO vs. the last decade's "rich internet architecture". Apple's doing what it always does, control its platform. I'm not sure why anybody's so surprised. I've been burned by the lock-in, lock-out myself (DISCLAIMER: I do own an Apple computer), but, I'm not going to cry myself to sleep over the marginalization of the Flash platform on the iPhone OS. I think most died-in-the-wool Apple users feel this way (ho hum/ meh), and Apple is willing to take advantage of this sentiment to further shape their own platform the way they want it. Right? Wrong? I don't think this is really a question of ethics or morals. I think it's Apple having their own way, and people with dollars not caring enough to get mad and go elsewhere.

Comment Re:a better question (Score 2, Insightful) 706

the free availability should be motivation enough. it was for me.

I think the projection of self onto the societal-level of decision making gives us policy that only works for a few people. This is especially the case when you apply yourself as (presumably) an adult as a decent model for today's children. Their situation is invariably different from yours and using your own childhood as a model for a wide swath of today's youth is probably not going to match up to the needs and expectations of today.

Comment Re:a better question (Score 2) 706

Stick with the numbers. If it's more effective and costs less, while still being within the realm of morally acceptable, why not consider it as a viable option? That being said, I'd like to see more test groups before opening it up to something as strong as "we should implement this all over".

Comment Re:Knowledge != Belief (Score 1) 495

So you knew about the Big Bang and Evolution and were able to acknowledge their validity at about age 4 or 5? Even that early on as a child, you probably wouldn't have the capacity to grasp the implications of these topics. So like I said already, it's just you believing something like the Big Bang Theory or Evolution to be true, not knowing it to be true or valid. This is similar to believing in a religion or the like.

The US also has plenty of science programming on television. It's pretty well enjoyed by many Americans.

Comment Knowledge != Belief (Score 2, Insightful) 495

To the average layman/Joe/Jane "knowledge" of the truth of the Big Bang and Evolution is really tantamount to believing that they are true (that is, valid explanations of our reality). If you go off of a high school education, what do teachers really tell you aside from a few weeks' lecture (at best) and showing some pictures in a book? How does that equate to knowledge of these things aside from "my teacher told me it was true". Perhaps we're just doing a horrible job of managing our credibility on topics such as these. People in all walks of life both deny and affirm the validity of these two theories, yet they seem to appear everywhere (and are wildly [un]successful at their pursuits). Widespread belief in the (in)validity of these two things does not denote the working value of a high school level education, if not even a higher education outside of the areas relevant to these theories. In my opinion, of course.

We can found no scientific discipline, nor a healthy profession on the technical mistakes of the Department of Defense and IBM. -- Edsger Dijkstra