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Comment: Re: There is no single "fair" value. (Score 1) 602

by Dynedain (#48602015) Attached to: UK Announces 'Google Tax'

Wow - making judgmental calls on my beliefs based on what I say about logic.

You realize this all stemmed from you claiming the Bible recommends a gold standard and I merely refuted your claim.

That has absolutely nothing to do with my individual belief system (which you're absolutely wrong about) and is intentionally going off-topic so that you can feel you won some kind of argument.

Comment: Re: There is no single "fair" value. (Score 1) 602

by Dynedain (#48590617) Attached to: UK Announces 'Google Tax'

As soon as you start hand-waving away and justifying portions you don't agree with (like the slavery example you just mentioned), you have opened the door for *any* portions to be justified away in the same manner. There is nothing in the Bible that instructs "follow this part, but ignore the previous page."

The Bible cannot be used as a basis of logic and directive on human behavior for this very reason. It can be a fantastic tool for study, for allegorical lessons, for cautionary warnings, for a supplementary tool, and especially as the guiding principals of religious belief, but not as a logical basis for extrapolation into how people or cultures should act.

Comment: 237 kB decoder... (Score 1) 377

by pv2b (#48570693) Attached to: Bellard Creates New Image Format To Replace JPEG

Doing some investigation, the claim that the BPG decoder is "small" might not be exactly true. The decoder, even minified, clocks in at 237 kB.

Although this is mitigated since the decoder could be cached in the browser cache, making it so that the decoder could be downloaded just once - at least just once per session. And once per web site, of course, because everyone is going to host their own copy of it. (I imagine at least... would same-origin policy be a problem if you tried to keep it somewhere central/standard?)

Anyone deploying this would be advised to consider if the space savings outweigh that initial cost in space. Then again, it all depends on what you want to acheive. What if you just have a huge archive of seldom-accessed images and want to save on disk space rather than on network bandwidth? Might make sense to store the images as BPG server-side and do decompression server-side if you can take the CPU hit.

Comment: Re: There is no single "fair" value. (Score 1) 602

by Dynedain (#48567941) Attached to: UK Announces 'Google Tax'

The Bible clearly lays out mandatory tithing . Wether a particular denomination or church follows that practice is something altogether different.

But it's completely wrong to claim that the Bible discourages taxation while ignoring what the Bible says about tithing. Not to mention the whole "Give to Caesar what is Caesar's" goes against your servitude argument as well.

Hint: The Bible is inconsistent with itself in many ways. As a result, trying to use the Bible as foundation or any set of rules or behaviors requires making effectively arbitrary decisions as to which conflicting passages should be used or how they should be interpreted.

Comment: That's the cloud for you (Score 3, Insightful) 250

That's what happens when you reliquish control of your digital life for the sake of the superficial convenience of not having to maintain your own hardware and perform your own backups: when the third party you entrust your data to decides you can't have it anymore, all you can do is bitch and moan and ask politely to get back what's rightfully yours. But *you* don't decide: your comfortable and convenient digital jailer does.

At the end of the day, Apple customers only have themselves to blame for what Apple does to them. And the same goes for Google, Microsoft and all the others, when they decide to shaft their own userbase without warning.

Comment: Re:Is it true... (Score 4, Insightful) 355

by Rosco P. Coltrane (#48505689) Attached to: James Watson's Nobel Prize Goes On Auction This Week

Scoring high on intelligence tests only proves you know how to answer intelligence tests. Everybody knows IQ scores are no indication of intelligence.

Also, IQ tests often favors those who have received a good education: for instance, if you ask a math question to someone who doesn't know math, they're bound to score low. Does that mean that person is stupid? No, it just means they don't have the means to answer the test.

And of course, conveniently, which section of the population chronically receives the worst levels education? People of color of course. It's a self-perpetuating myth...

But I'll grant you this: whites and blacks *are* different: the former produce less melanin than the latter. That's as much as you can say with 100% certainty about the two.


Big Talk About Small Samples 246

Posted by samzenpus
from the read-all-about-it dept.
Bennett Haselton writes: My last article garnered some objections from readers saying that the sample sizes were too small to draw meaningful conclusions. (36 out of 47 survey-takers, or 77%, said that a picture of a black woman breast-feeding was inappropriate; while in a different group, 38 out of 54 survey-takers, or 70%, said that a picture of a white woman breast-feeding was inappropriate in the same context.) My conclusion was that, even on the basis of a relatively small sample, the evidence was strongly against a "huge" gap in the rates at which the surveyed population would consider the two pictures to be inappropriate. I stand by that, but it's worth presenting the math to support that conclusion, because I think the surveys are valuable tools when you understand what you can and cannot demonstrate with a small sample. (Basically, a small sample can present only weak evidence as to what the population average is, but you can confidently demonstrate what it is not.) Keep reading to see what Bennett has to say.

Comment: Re:How? (Score 3, Funny) 61

by Rosco P. Coltrane (#48385017) Attached to: Researchers Forecast the Spread of Diseases Using Wikipedia

They made the assumption that if a disease is spreading somewhere, there people start looking for information about the disease on wikipedia

Imagine the potential: if a lot of search logs contain "EBOL-AAAARGH", they'll know a particularly fast-acting variant of the virus has emerged.

Pohl's law: Nothing is so good that somebody, somewhere, will not hate it.