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Comment: Re:Obviously (Score 5, Insightful) 247

by michelcolman (#49820435) Attached to: Fuel Free Spacecrafts Using Graphene

No, it's not pseudoscience.

If a researcher perfoms an experiment and gets a very strange, unexpected result, what should he do? Say "that result is clearly impossible, so I shall just disregard it"?

No, he will try to repeat the experiment, gather data, and try to figure out what's going on. Maybe (most likely) there's a perfectly valid explanation within existing scientific frameworks, maybe it's a setup or measurement error, or maybe, just maybe, this is a new effect that hadn't been discovered yet. So the scientist tries to figure that out, and tells others about the experiments so they can try the same thing and see if they get similar results.

That's how science works.

I'm sure you would have called the theory of relativity "pseudoscience" back in the day of Newtonian physics. New things do get discovered sometimes. As long as it's being researched using scientific methods, that's science and not pseudoscience. Yes, they probably will be wrong. That doesn't mean it's not science.

+ - SourceForge MITM Projects-> 2

Submitted by lister king of smeg
lister king of smeg writes: What happened?

SourceForge, once a trustworthy source code hosting site, started to place misleading ads (like fake download buttons) a few years ago. They are also bundling third-party adware/malware directly with their Windows installer.

Some project managers decided to leave SourceForge – partly because of this, partly just because there are better options today. SF staff hijacked some of these abandoned accounts, partly to bundle the crapware with their installers. It has become just another sleazy garbage site with downloads of fake antivirus programs and such.

How can I help?

If you agree that SourceForge is in fact distributing malicious software under the guise of open source projects, report them to google. Ideally this will help remove them from search results, prevent others from suffering their malware and provide them with incentive to change their behavior.

As this story has been submitted several times in the past several days, by various submitter and is going around various other tech forums( , , ,) this submitter wonders has our shared "glorious Dice Corporate overloads" been shooting this story down?
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Heh. (Score 5, Insightful) 255

The big problem is that everyone will now remember the fake study and continue to believe it, because the rectification doesn't get nearly as much coverage. People are still refusing to vaccinate children because they're afraid of autism even though the author of that study actually confessed having made the whole thing up.

Comment: Re:Mars One Plan (Score 1) 278

by michelcolman (#49781021) Attached to: How To Die On Mars

I like the way they start out by saying how hard it would be to land on Mars. You mean nobody has thought of that yet? Quick, somebody call Elon Musk and warn him before he sends over a rocket full of people with no way of landing there!

Also, they actually say they might have problems with plants producing too much oxygen. OK, hang on a minute there... Too much oxygen? On Mars? Somehow I don't think that will be such a major problem. Especially when combined with that other problem of not being able to make enough CO2...

I'm not saying it's going to be a picknick. It will be a hell of a challenge to just grow food and get breathable air. It just seems funny how the article emphasizes non-issues while disregarding much bigger problems.

Oh, and we shouldn't send over women because women live longer and are therefore more likely to develop cancer! Right, pick people with the shortest possible lifespan to maximize their... errr... oh, wait...

Comment: Re:Another Significant Hazard: Toxic Mars (Score 1) 278

by michelcolman (#49780963) Attached to: How To Die On Mars

Why don't we simply send those microbes over there already? We've got plenty of candidate lifeforms that "might" be able to survive on Mars. Just send samples of a bunch of those on a next rover mission to be scattered over some area, then see if any of them stick. Who knows, one of them might evolve into something that actually thrives on Martian soil and colonizes much of the planet. Let nature take care of the rest. Some people may not like the idea of "spoiling" the entire planet by importing life from earth (and possibly rendering the later discovery of indigenous life impossible), but if we can introduce life forms that reproduce exponentially, detoxify the soil and produce useful gases like oxygen, it will certainly make it (slightly) easier to colonize the planet once we're finally ready. Of course we won't be able to turn the planet into a giant forest, but it would be better than nothing. And we'd learn a hell of a lot about the evolution of life.

Also, if any catastrophic event happens here on earth, maybe something might come from those bacteria on Mars so life can go on. Maybe this already happened once on a different planet...

Comment: Re:Why not just kill them all? (Score 1) 148

by michelcolman (#49773729) Attached to: Sex-Switched Mosquitoes May Help In Fight Against Diseases

The problem is that, apparently, only two thirds of the females became male. If you would apply this method to a huge number of mosquitoes, there would be a temporary reduction in numbers followed by an explosion of mosquitoes that don't react to NIX. A single mosquito can lay quite a lot of eggs, so the numbers would be up to the old value again in a few generations. The number of mosquitoes is determined more by the environment than by the number of parent mosquitoes.

Comment: Re:Wou would have thought. (Score 1) 50

by michelcolman (#49736013) Attached to: Martian Moons May Have Formed Like Earth's

But how exactly does a planet "snatch" another object? The smaller object starts out at a huge distance from the planet, falls towards it (increasing its kinetic energy), passes by the planet (if it doesn't crash into it), and then... converts its kinetic energy back to the amount of potential energy it started out with, right?

Now if two different bodies would collide while close to the planet, some of the debris might just end up in orbit around the planet. But why would one small object not simply leave the planet again?

(Just an honest question, not saying anyone is wrong, just wondering how it works)

Comment: Re:Thanks to reader sleepypsycho for the poll idea (Score 2) 169

by michelcolman (#49734521) Attached to: When it comes to Slashdot ...

You can disable the Karma bonus. The problem with the bonus is that it adds one to the displayed score, but is not counted for achievements. Once you have a score:5 (which is really score 4 + 1 bonus), people stop modding you up so you never make it to a "real" +5. They can still mod you up one more point, but most people don't know so they don't. And this makes you miss achievements that require a "real" +5 (comedian, for example)

caveat: maybe they have changed the system in the mean time, but I remember it certainly used to work that way.

Our business in life is not to succeed but to continue to fail in high spirits. -- Robert Louis Stevenson