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Comment: Re:Immoral (Score 1) 78

by matbury (#47955867) Attached to: Is Google's Non-Tax Based Public School Funding Cause For Celebration?

More than promote their brand, they want as big a slice of the public education budget as they can get. They want to be THE IT provider to education systems worldwide and are working towards that end as we speak.

On the crowdfunding front, having public education and curriculum policy decisions made by consumerist popularity polls, PR, and marketing couldn't possibly go wrong, could it? I mean, our democratic electoral systems are doing just fine right now, aren't they? There's no problem with corporations' money distorting the public political discourse, is there? I don't think Google and Pearson Education would try to influence such a system to their advantage, do you?

Comment: Re:Free Willy! (Score 4, Interesting) 450

by matbury (#47947313) Attached to: Scotland Votes No To Independence

An independent Scotland would already be in the EU, the message from Brussels was yes, they can, and the Euro or the Pound would work fine. The London-centric media is intensely unionist and propagated blatantly untrue FUD, backed by Coca Cola, Pepsi Cola, Microsoft, Accenture, IBM, Bayer, Daimler, EON Energy, Thyssen, XL Group, Alliance Trust, Bilfinger, and BMW, to scare Scottish voters into voting no. I'm English and have no particular affiliation to Scotland but it was shamefull how the English media, corporations, and Westminster politicians behaved during the referendum. Because of the hysteria, exaggerations, and lies implying increased crime and disorder as a consequence of the Independence Referendum, at one point Brian Docherty, Chairman of the Scottish Police Federation felt that they had to make the following public announcement:

“The Police Service of Scotland and the men and women who work in it should not be used as a political football at any time and especially so in these last few hours of the referendum campaign.

As I have previously stated the referendum debate has been robust but overwhelmingly good natured.

It was inevitable that the closer we came to the 18th of September passions would increase but that does not justify the exaggerated rhetoric that is being deployed with increased frequency. Any neutral observer could be led to believe Scotland is on the verge of societal disintegration yet nothing could be further from the truth.

Scotland’s citizens are overwhelmingly law abiding and tolerant and it is preposterous to imply that by placing a cross in a box, our citizens will suddenly abandon the personal virtues and values held dear to them all.

At this time it is more important than ever that individuals be they politicians, journalists or whoever should carefully consider their words, maintain level heads and act with respect. Respect is not demonstrated by suggesting a minority of mindless idiots are representative of anything. One of the many joys of this campaign has been how it has awakened political awareness across almost every single section of society. The success enjoyed by the many should not be sullied by the actions of the few.

Police officers must be kept free from the distractions of rhetoric better suited to the playground that the political stump. If crime has been committed it will be investigated and dealt with appropriately but quite simply police officers have better things to do than officiate in spats on social media and respond to baseless speculation of the potential for disorder on and following polling day”

Comment: Subsidies = corporate welfare (Score 1) 324

by matbury (#47945351) Attached to: FCC Chairman: Americans Shouldn't Subsidize Internet Service Under 10Mbps

Take the subsidy money collected from the public and use to provide high-speed, high quality municipal internet services. It's the easiest, most doable, and cost-effective way to provide competition to the ISP monopolies, and to boot, if they start with impoverished neibourhoods, the corporate ISPs would look really bad if they opposed it. Sure some municipalities would resist at first but hopefully popularity and success in others would put them under overwhelming pressure to provide it.

Comment: A little bit not neutral? (Score 1) 239

by matbury (#47924013) Attached to: AT&T Proposes Net Neutrality Compromise

Making net neutrality a little bit "not neutral" sounds an awful ot like they want to make your sister a little bit pregnant. it's either neutral, i.e. it treats all traffic and all content equally, or it's not neutral, i.e. some content is more equal than others. I don't want my favourite alternative content getting marginalised because it got out-voted by NetFlix consumers. It's the weird and wonderful stuff that people put out there "just because" that makes the internet more interesting, culturally valuable, and worthwhile than TV.

Comment: Re:The hosers are right (Score 1) 462

by matbury (#47892657) Attached to: CBC Warns Canadians of "US Law Enforcement Money Extortion Program"

And your logical fallacy is... tu quoque! Literally translating as 'you too' this fallacy is also known as the appeal to hypocrisy. It is commonly employed as an effective red herring because it takes the heat off someone having to defend their argument, and instead shifts the focus back on to the person making the criticism. Example: Nicole identified that Hannah had committed a logical fallacy, but instead of addressing the substance of her claim, Hannah accused Nicole of committing a fallacy earlier on in the conversation. https://yourlogicalfallacyis.c...

Comment: Re:Maybe, we just should not do SAME thing nationw (Score 1) 58

by matbury (#47838395) Attached to: Music Training's Cognitive Benefits Could Help "At-Risk" Students

However, how we test dictates how we teach. You can give students a liberal arts education in the classroom but if the tests are CCSS, there's little or no incentive for them to participate in class. In effect, the tests directly inform students what's expected of them in class. If they can fool around and misbehave in class and then just cram a few hours/days/weeks before a big test and still get good grades, guess what'll tend to happen? For more info, look up John Biggs' SOLO taxonomy and the idea of Constructive Alignment.

Comment: Re: A fool and their money (Score 2, Funny) 266

Yes, with this technology, you can also detect if a woman's pregnant, find out if she's a virgin, find buried treasure, expell evil spirits, and pleasure the gods until they make it rain. People have told me it works in all of these cases so it must be true.

Comment: Man, what a bad idea... (Score 4, Insightful) 140

by matbury (#47759163) Attached to: Climate Scientist Pioneer Talks About the Furture of Geoengineering

Geo-engineering to counter the effects of CO2 is like someone taking sleeping pills to counter the effects of habitually doing amphetamines at an alarmingly increasing rate. If that doesn't convince you, how about listening to a well-informed 3rd party who isn't chasing research funding for their pet geo-engineering project: Can Geo-Engineering Save the Planet? - Christopher Williams on Reality Asserts Itself

Comment: Just for irony's sake... (Score 1) 233

by matbury (#47756807) Attached to: California Passes Law Mandating Smartphone Kill Switch

I think all these phones should come with a copy of George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-four and a copy of the US constitution... for irony's sake. They should also be made suscpetible to packet injection so that the authorities can alter the information that people receive through them. Down the memory hole!

Comment: "Inclement weather" (Score 2) 117

by matbury (#47751569) Attached to: Securing the US Electrical Grid

I reckon "inclement weather" will turn out to be the most disruptive force on electricity production and supply. Firstly, drought will starve coal, gas, and nuclear power stations of the huge amounts of water they need to run at all. Secondly, warmer water in water sources may make cooling less efficient for nuclear power stations (and possibly a danger in some cases). Thirdly there's a higher and growing risk of extreme weather events; floods, flash floods, droughts, tornados, hurricanes, and ice-storms. Just think of the more recent extreme weather events but more extreme and more frequent.

Comment: Re: Yeah, as music artists know, not so fun is it? (Score 1) 275

by matbury (#47747127) Attached to: Dropbox Caught Between Warring Giants Amazon and Google

Re: "you'd already be sleeping on a bed made of money" -- Simply not true. Having worked in the music business, I can tell you that it's anything but meritocratic. I have friends and colleagues who were signed up, promoted, had moderate success, and some had hits (Top tip: Getting a distribution deal is the only thing worth having. It means that they have to invest substantial funds into promoting you so that they don't make a loss on all that distribution. This stops them from signing you up simply to shut you up and to stop you from competing with another band/artist they've already signed and are planning to promote). They all ended up owing their record labels money. It's a sad fact that even a successful recording band/artist doesn't see any money until their 3rd successful album. It's a nest of vipers, a tank of sharks, whatever metaphor you want to use. Nobody survives for very long by playing fair and keeping things ethical and above board. With a few rare exceptions, i.e. the longer-term stars that we see on TV, the only people who make decent money out of music are the ones who don't play instruments. If you're wondering why more bands and artists don't go public with this, read a recording contract.

Numeric stability is probably not all that important when you're guessing.