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Comment: Re:"Fruit of poisonous tree" does not apply (Score 1) 144

by oreaq (#49378615) Attached to: Silk Road Investigators Charged With Stealing Bitcoin
If somebody likes to steal it is reasonable to suspect that he creates situation in which he can easily steal. The two investigators proofed that stealing is what they do, so all results of their "investigation" should be taken with a large grain of salt. Your example is spot on.

Comment: Re:How about energy conservation? (Score 1) 288

by oreaq (#49025747) Attached to: Quantum Equation Suggests Universe Had No Beginning

Conservation of energy - the assumption that energy cannot be either destroyed or created - is a fundamental axiom in physics, which goes against the idea that there was a point in time before which the universe didn't exist, but after, it did

Emi Noether showed in the first half of the last century that conservation of energy is equivalent to time invariance ("shift symmetry of time"). At the beginning of time, i. e. the beginning of the universe, there was no time invariance; time was just being "created". Hence no conservation of energy.

Comment: Re:I've got this (Score 1) 400

by oreaq (#49018231) Attached to: An Argument For Not Taking Down Horrific Videos

Should NBC be able to air detailed plans to create a nuclear weapon? If you answer 'yes' to this, then I have to write you off as a crazy ideologue.

Isn't the real question: Should NBC be banned from airing detailed plans to create a nuclear weapon? If you think they should be banned: Who else should be banned from doing so? Universities? Why? Why not?

If you answer 'no', then you have to admit that there are limits to freedom of expression and it is just a matter of finding a consensus position.

I think they should not. There are far better ways to learn how to build a nuclear weapon than a television series; most of it is engineering and the only way to learn that is by actually designing and building stuff. Watching other people do it just doesn't cut it. A television program is therefore not required.

I'm actually not sure if there should be limits to freedom of speech. Maybe it would be better to allow all speech (even the "shouting fire in a theatre"). Hard to tell. Do you have any data to support either side of the discussion or will you only contribute some random insults?

Comment: Re:Uh... Yeah? (Score 1) 242

by oreaq (#47363875) Attached to: Court Allowed NSA To Spy On All But 4 Countries

I'd argue it was very good, that only thousands of lives were lost, instead of the millions if spycraft had failed.

John Stockwell, former CIA Station Chief in Angola in 1976, working for then Director of the CIA, George Bush estimated in 1987, 27 years ago, that over 6 million people have died in CIA covert actions. See http://www.informationclearing.... What do you think? Have they doubled their number by now?

Comment: Re:Peer review (Score 1) 154

by oreaq (#47002219) Attached to: Momentous Big Bang Findings Questioned

As another poster said, his ideas lead to the necessity of only one high tide at noon, and we know that isn't true

Both sides had no explanation for tides. This is not a difference in the quality of the theories, no predictive or explanatory power on either side.

His idea of the motion of the planets still relied on epicycles to explain why they appeared to move forward then backwards then forwards again throughout the year because he was stuck on perfectly circular orbits.

Again: Both theories are wrong; Galileo's is arguably closer to the truth.

Geocentricism certainly wasn't right, but its predictive power was better than Galileo's ideas.

Galileo's observed that Venus exhibited a full set of phases in clear violation of Ptolemy's geocentric model. His discovery of a couple of Jupiter's moons proofed that not all heavenly bodies orbit the earth. These are some examples for Galileo's theory being superior to geocentrism. Can you name a concrete example, where the church's geocentric model actually did better than Galileo's ideas?

There's nothing 'wrong' or unscientific about disagreeing with Galileo, because Galileo was wrong.

I agree. But to reject it because it is "foolish and absurd in philosophy, and formally heretical since it explicitly contradicts in many places the sense of Holy Scripture." is wrong an unscientific. Again: I'm not arguing that Galileo was right. With todays knowledge it is easy to see how wrong he was.

Comment: Re:Peer review (Score 1) 154

by oreaq (#46997335) Attached to: Momentous Big Bang Findings Questioned

But, as science, his astronomical theories were way off the mark, and he was going around asserting them to be true without question, all the while by insulting some of the most powerful people on the planet.

I think it's not fair to measure him against what we know today. You have to compare his model against the scientific believe and knowledge of his time. That is what science is all about: finding a model that is less wrong than the model you had before. Are you arguing that the geocentric model is less wrong than what Galileo proposed? Which is closer to the truth? I understand that Galileo's model is more wrong than the geocentric model we use today but that seems irrelevant to the case.

Comment: Re:Hacker??!! (Score 2) 248

by oreaq (#46227951) Attached to: Blogger Fined €3,000 for 'Publicizing' Files Found Through Google Search

He sent a "GET /some_document.html HTTP/1.1" request to a web server run by the French National Agency for Food Safety. The web server, acting per procurationem for the agency, sent him the "secret" document. If I ask you, "Can you give me $10?" and you give me $10 dollars, you can't run around and claim that I stole $10 from you.

Comment: Re:We the people (Score 3, Interesting) 465

The Sanford Prison Experiment is a poster child for what was wrong with scientific psychology in most of the last century. Philip Zimbardo, knowingly or unknowingly, designed and implemented the experiment in such a way that he got exactly the results he wanted. The wiki lists some of the deficiencies:

Zimbardo found it impossible to keep traditional scientific controls in place. He was unable to remain a neutral observer, since he influenced the direction of the experiment as the prison's superintendent. Conclusions and observations drawn by the experimenters were largely subjective and anecdotal, and the experiment would be difficult for other researchers to reproduce.

Also look at how ethics committees changed their guidelines as a response to that experiment.

Science is to computer science as hydrodynamics is to plumbing.