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Comment: Re:I'd love to do that (Score 1) 222

by jdavidb (#48569873) Attached to: Dad Makes His Kid Play Through All Video Game History In Chronological Order

Oh, man, this guy and I were cut from the same OCD cloth. I know it just looking at his pictures of Atari 2600 game boxes all sorted first by box style and then alphabetized. I used to do that when I was a kid and when I finally get the thing out of storage I'll bet a bunch of the games are alphabetized.

Comment: I'd love to do that (Score 1) 222

by jdavidb (#48569837) Attached to: Dad Makes His Kid Play Through All Video Game History In Chronological Order

I have seven kids all homeschooled and we love to fire up Mame, and I've kept my Atari 2600 although they haven't gotten to play it yet and I need to bring it out of storage. And I love to have them go through interesting pieces of twentieth century history in chronological order - right now we're watching through old Disney and Warner Brothers cartoons together on Saturday mornings, in order. Next year they are going to watch all six Star Wars films in the order they were released, before we see Episode VII.

BTW, it's kind of adding insult to injury that the Pac-Man screen on that article doesn't match the actual console that is shown. I wonder what the kid thought of various ports of Pac-Man.

Comment: Control and abuse (Score 1) 584

by jdavidb (#48522637) Attached to: Programmer Father Asks: What Gets Little Girls Interested In Science?

Why does your child have to be a scientist? How is this any better than a 20 year old boy whose parents want him to be a doctor and who disown him because he chooses to be a musician?

As a father of seven children, I believe you'll make better parenting decisions if you learn to let go, and spend lots of time deliberating and negotiating with your wife so that the wisdom of both of you can be brought to bear. If you really want your children to be counter culture in some way, and you are both enthusiastic about it, you might look into homeschooling.

Comment: Re:misogynists on the intarwebz? WHAT U SAY? (Score 1) 834

by jdavidb (#48361447) Attached to: How To End Online Harassment

There is effectively no censorship on the internet now

I pick forums that have a level of moderation that suits my needs. In the past I tended toward more laissez-faire moderated places and just ignored what I didn't like, but as I've grown older for a handful of subjects I've needed forums that are little tighter. That's the great thing about freedom: you can pick what suits you, and get away from everywhere else.

Comment: Re:How is their infringment? (Score 1) 268

by jdavidb (#48361153) Attached to: GNOME Project Seeks Donations For Trademark Battle With Groupon
The problem I see is that if Gnome doesn't defend their trademark, one day Groupon may come around and sue Gnome for their pre-existing non-infringing use of the same name for a different product - and there's a chance they could win. If I understand correctly, going on the record now trying to defend the trademark reduces the possibility that Groupon could win if they were to turn the tables and sue Gnome in a few years.

Comment: Re:I'm optimistic... (Score 1) 267

by jdavidb (#48338139) Attached to: 'Star Wars: Episode VII' Gets a Name

Though honestly, all *three* movies are terrible when you compare them to the Thrawn trilogy (also not a popular opinion, but search yourself, you know it to be true :p.) So whether or not episodes 7-9 will be any good (I'm guessing no, but I'd be happy to be wrong), I'm still pissed at them for retconning all the extended universe (including the masterful Thrawn trilogy) out of existence.

That's one of the best reasons ever for eliminating copyright - let the differing visions compete on their merits, rather than on what is "official" according to the copyright holder.

I loved the Thrawn trilogy, but at some point I realized they could never be movies because they were just too long. Which is a shame - I would sit through them with joy, but the general public wouldn't. Back in the day, everybody I knew thought that the Thrawn trilogy was 7, 8, and 9.

Comment: Re:I'm optimistic... (Score 1) 267

by jdavidb (#48331093) Attached to: 'Star Wars: Episode VII' Gets a Name

but maybe having a good writer (who made almost all the Star Wars films you love -- and none of the ones you hate) means you'll have a good story?

I don't know if today's grown Star Wars fans will ever be happy. Nowadays it's popular to blast even Return of the Jedi. I think the sophisticated fans feel that only IV and V, or even only V, were any good.

My memory is that when TPM came out, everybody on Slashdot posted that they loved it for about a day - and then suddenly the hate came in. I never figured it out. Suddenly it wasn't cool to like TPM, so everybody hated on it.

Comment: Re:Using NASA's dictionary (Score 2) 445

by jdavidb (#48283087) Attached to: Virgin Galactic SpaceShipTwo Crashes

what if this happens because Branson wants some results to show to investors and pushed too much? Would you still say he was a brave pioneer or just an abused employee?

In that case I'd say he was both. He was made a pioneer by his intentions. He wouldn't be the first pioneer to be abused and mistreated, just as he is not the first pioneer to give his life trying to get humanity to the next frontier.

Comment: Re:Using NASA's dictionary (Score 2) 445

by jdavidb (#48282151) Attached to: Virgin Galactic SpaceShipTwo Crashes

May we mourn the loss of this brave pioneer and honor his or her legacy. I think this is a perfectly appropriate time to quote these words:

I know it is hard to understand, but sometimes painful things like this happen. It's all part of the process of exploration and discovery. It's all part of taking a chance and expanding man's horizons. The future doesn't belong to the fainthearted; it belongs to the brave. The [SpaceShipTwo] crew was pulling us into the future, and we'll continue to follow them...

The crew of the [SpaceShipTwo] honored us by the manner in which they lived their lives. We will never forget them, nor the last time we saw them, this morning, as they prepared for the journey and waved goodbye and "slipped the surly bonds of earth" to "touch the face of God."

Comment: Re:Already gone (Score 1) 304

by jdavidb (#48161083) Attached to: Technology Heats Up the Adultery Arms Race

I can surely see the point in avoiding making people feel like the "ought to" do anything - it's a wholly destructive concept wherein you hold yourself up to an arbitrary yardstick and inevitably fall short (if you didn't fall short there would be nothing that you "ought to" be doing).

You wouldn't believe how destructive it is when a philandering spouse wants to maintain a secret second life and uses this to guilt you into not checking up on them.

That doesn't mean that you shouldn't strive for it

Well, you shouldn't strive for it, because it's your mate that has to strive for it. The feeling of trust is a feeling that is created by the mate's actions. You check up on them to see what they are doing, and if they are behaving in a trustworthy manner, eventually you feel trust.

One of Harley's major premises is that as a psychologist, it's easier to change behavior than feelings. The change in feelings comes after your spouse changes behavior (which sometimes comes after you yourself change behavior - for example, by starting to check up on them).

Comment: Re:Already gone (Score 1) 304

by jdavidb (#48154627) Attached to: Technology Heats Up the Adultery Arms Race

Which would seem to suggest that trust is important

Well, he goes on to say that trust is still irrational, and to insist that it is not trust that makes a marriage successful. Since a big part of his work is about motivation, he's very careful to word things such that people don't feel like they "ought to" trust. In fact, trying to make a spouse feel like they "ought to" trust and that something is wrong with them if they do not is a common tactic for spouses in an affair who do not want to be discovered.

Comment: Re:Already gone (Score 2) 304

by jdavidb (#48152981) Attached to: Technology Heats Up the Adultery Arms Race

Unrelated. In this case we're not talking about the application of tools, we're talking about trust - which is widely considered to the THE most important factor in any healthy relationship. So lets try this on for size: "If you feel you can't trust the person you've chosen to be your life partner, your relationship already has serious issues"

"Widely considered" is an interesting standard of expertise to use about relationships, since the vast majority of relationships and marriages fail. In fact the vast majority of people who get counseling report that it didn't help them.

Dr. Willard Harley is the author of His Needs, Her Needs, one of the few relationship books that was indicated by a study to actually be successful, and he has actually applied statistics and science to measure the success of his approach to marital counseling. His approach is successful in saving relationships and restoring the feeling of romantic love (or creating it if it did not previously exist).

Harley stands outside of mainstream advice on a number of issues, but as I just said, mainstream advice hasn't been demonstrated to be particularly helpful. Dr. Harley's opinion on trust is that you should not trust each other in a relationship but that instead you should invite each other to check up on each other to whatever extent you choose. In his words, snoop until snooping is boring because you've snooped enough that you know you won't find anything. When you get to that point, you'll feel trust, rather than forcing yourself to feel it irrationally (i.e., without evidence, or in contrast to what the evidence actually says).

Comment: Re:Opensource remake (Score 2) 93

I took a graduate neural networks class in 2002 and did my implementation in Perl using PDL. The professor desperately pushed matlab on everybody but left us free to choose our own implementation language, and I chose Perl. I felt I understood neural networks pretty well at the end of the project. Twelve years on all I remember are the basic concepts at a high level.

Comment: Re:"could be worse than Heartbleed" (Score 1) 318

by jdavidb (#47997461) Attached to: Flurry of Scans Hint That Bash Vulnerability Could Already Be In the Wild

any CGI script that at any point invokes a shell or invokes a program that invokes a shell (e.g. using the system call), irrespective of the actual shell command

But it's been well known for more than ten years that you ought not to call system or execute external programs from a CGI program. That's just a bad idea. This exploit is one proof as to why.

HELP!!!! I'm being held prisoner in /usr/games/lib!