Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed


Forgot your password?
Slashdot Deals: Cyber Monday Sale Extended! Courses ranging from coding to project management - all eLearning deals 20% off with coupon code "CYBERMONDAY20". ×

Comment Re:60 years later (Score 1) 125

Nothing wipes out humiliation of a country that no longer exists like going to the moon 60 years later with a rocket that - still on paper - is 1/6 as capable.

Try to be fair - it is a good exercise, if nothing else. The US moon landing was not really much more than an expensive dick waving expedition with little or no plans for the future, as events have shown. Hopefully what the Russians and Chinese intend to do will be more planned and more constructive. I mean, it makes my shudder to think that anybody travelled up there in a tin can with a computer system about as powerful as a Furby. Brave - very brave; just not all that smart.

In my view, we should start sending up robotic equipment - autonomous or remote controlled - until we can build a substantial base in which people can live for longer periods of time. I wouldn't be surprised if the Chinese and Russians have something like that on their minds. Hopefully they will let us join them, and then we can work together to reach Mars.

Comment Re:Violence! (Score 1) 484

there has been continuous jewish presence in the holyland for 3 millenia. they get driven out, they come back, they get massecred, they bounce back. etc. etc. they kind of like it there.

You almost sound like you want to tell us something. Do you mean that ecause the Jews have always been there, they have a right to take over? Don't get me wrong - I'm pragmatic enough to accept the status quo, but I am quite allergic to ideological and religious zealots claiming special rights based on fiction.

they didn't conquer the land, so much as, the ottoman empire imploded and that's what the winners of WW2 did with it. The jews defended whatever borders they could and i think the majority of the palestinian refugees fled voluntarily, because they thought they'd be coming back to a judenrein area, or that's what the arab world was telling them.

Heh, I see what you are doing there: trying to sneak in a suggestion, that the Palestinians are somehow a kind of Nazis, by using a German sounding word: 'judenrein'. Certain factions in Israel are practicing that sentiment very well, with the tacit approval of the Israeli government, it would appear. Whatever you say, the territory was built on conquest, taken from the Palestinians, and even now, how many years later? - you are still denying them a nation of their own. Why is that? Are the Jews somehow the master race and the goyim inferior? I think it is fair question - it is so easy to see the Jewish exclusiveness as expressing such a view. Again, I should probably repeat that I am not an anti-semite; for all I know, many of my friends and colleagues could well be Jews, I have never given it much thought. To me, each individual stands on their own merits; I assume the Jews have their fair share of both good and bad people.

Comment Re:Violence! (Score 1) 484

Thank you for correcting me on the history of things :-)

I think the gist of my considerations is still valid, though - Israel's claim to any territory has little to do with ancient history and everything to do with the fact that they have conquered the land from the Palestinians. And they stand to lose their privileged position in the world, when the balance of power shifts away from the US - something that seems increasingly likely, IMO.

Comment Re:Violence! (Score 2, Interesting) 484

You've got that spot on, I think. But first things first - as always when commenting on these issues, I'll start by stating that I am not, in any way, anti-semitic; I am not against the right of Jews to live and enjoy life and freedom just like everybody else, no matter what their religion or race. I am, however, against the state of affairs that is largely being perpetuated by the State of Israel.

The existence of modern Israel has come about based on a combination of the bad conscience of the Western powers af WWII and the myth of the lost homeland of the Jews. Yes, there was once a nation called Israel, as far as we know - but that nation was itself based on the conquest of a previous nation followed by genocide of the previous inhabitants (if we are to believe the Bible, and who would doubt the Holy Scriptures, eh? Certainly not the Jews, I would have thought). Perhaps we should go and dig out the Filistrians and reinstate them in their rightful homeland? All nations are ephemeral in nature, Israel included.

As for the role of the bad conscience of the West: however atrocious the Holocaust was, it is now part of a history that is getting ever more remote. I think we have learnt the lesson of that and many countries - Germany not least - have redeemed themselves. What happened back then should not be used as a carte blanche to excuse the present days state of Israel for any and all actions they desire to take. On the contrary, the memory of these horrors should inspire the citizens of Israel to be better than their opressors - and far better, not 'only just'. But there is a far more practical consideration: the might of the West is in decline. Soon nations like China and India, and later other nations who have no particular issue either for or against Israel, will play a role that may change the way Israel is being supported beying reason. In light of this, would it not be sensible if Israel started making friends with their neighbors? They can - but not if they allow their own religious extremists and their selfish landgrabbers to rule the country like they seem to do now.

Comment Re:Increase productivity?? (Score 1) 443

Only an idiot would sacrifice their mental health for a few hours of tripping.

If LSD meant 'sacrificing your mental health' then it would be stupid, agreed. Fortunately this isn't the case - I know this from experience, whereas you don't. But hey, no problem, I don't particularly need to convince you.

Comment Re:Increase productivity?? (Score 5, Interesting) 443

Have you ever tried LSD? The effect is somewhat different from what you think, possibly; a major component is that it works like speed, to some extent, and it keeps going for ~8 hours. I'm not sure how much work I would be able to do in that state, but I know some people can (John Lennon famously did at least for a while). I've only ever taken large doses, but even then you don't simply disappear into a wild maelstrom of hallucinations - it is more controllable than that. But you do get inspirations and ideas pouring into your mind all the time - I got tired of it in the end.

Comment Re:Next up: Stone candy. (Score 2) 156

If we can literally gorge ourselves on near-zero calorie foods, we will have solved obesity, simple as that.

Probably not. Research has shown that when we eat artificial sweetener, the tongue (as well as taste receptors in our gut) sends signals to prepare the body to process the incoming sugar, resulting in certain reactions (increased insulin production, other things); when no sugar turns up, the body begins to adjust to the fact that sugar taste doesn't mean sugar: the body becomes 'sugar-blind' in effect.

I think in order to overcome the obesity crisis, we should go the other way: we should try to become more sensitive to what calories we consume, not less. Otherwise we end up in the situation we see in the US, where people seem to be obscessed with overconsumption on an epic scale. Breaking out of an obscession like that is not easy, I know, but it is possible. However, to do so, it is probably essential to stay away from foods that lie about their calory content. So: eat sugar, butter, meat etc, but only eat a little. Learn to enjoy feeling hungry from time to time - it isn't dangerous.

Comment Re:There were TV documentories on this (Score 1) 210

...all that pressure had the effect of bringing about peace in the end

Can you give me the name of your dealer? You must be smoking some awsome stuff, if you think the development in Russia since Gorbachev has been 'peace'. I know the general concensus is that the Soviet Union was exclusively evil, and there is no denying that Stalin, by and large, fitted that description quite well; I just wonder how much of the paranoia was due to us in the West being so hell-bent on destroying their system? Even the Soviet leaders knew that it would be a lot easier to govern a population that didn't feel oppressed, so I'm sure they didn't do it just for the fun of it. We, in the West and especially the US, were a very real threat to their way of government, and we should not be so smug as to sit back and say that Communism could never have worked, even if the country was surrounded by peace and love. We simply have no basis for that statement other than prejudice.

Comment I'm not worried (Score 1) 232

Well, not too worried, at least. When the day comes where I can't use a tv without an internet connection, I'll simply get rid of it and use a computer with an OS that I have full control over. And if that isn't possible, then never mind. I rarely use it any way - mostly news, sometimes a factual program, nearly all from BBC, which I think it is reasonable to hope will stay free to air.

And that is probably the nub of the problem: lack of interest. Every time I see those hyped up adverts about how many hundreds of channels you get with cable, and how you can see the latest and greatest movies etc, I think about hundreds of channels all showing more or less the same reality show, soap opera, ..., and the latest and greatest movies are going to turn up a few months later on free to air. I can wait - it's only entertainment; and if I really want to, I just go to a cinema.

Perhaps, in years to come, tv will disappear and be replaced with online services; and if you want to enjoy something less utilitarian, you go to a live performance.

Comment Re:Why I'm not an IT Exec (Score 1) 83

Porn chicks? You mean the ones that have had a full body wax and look like they are doing their tax forms when they are mechanically copulating? Wouldn't an inflatable doll seem more interested? And it would come with less risk of infections.

As for speeding along on coke or similar during sex: it really isn't interesting. Take a clue from the old Stones song "Satisfaction" - having hours of erection isn't much fun when the knob is is numb.

Yes, we will be going to OSI, Mars, and Pluto, but not necessarily in that order. -- Jeffrey Honig