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Comment: Maybe not art (Score 1) 91

by raque (#47814541) Attached to: Researchers Say Neanderthals Created Cave Art

This is a mountain being made out of a mole hill. What we have is evidence that a series of hash marks were made for no reason we can see. Therefore, it must be symbolic. I'm not buying it, even if they are selling.

First, we have to remember that the Neanderthals did not much change their tool set for something like 260,000 years. If you find a Mousterian tool set anywhere you have Neanderthals. That is weird in it's self. Think about it, for 2600 centuries everywhere from Afghanistan to Gibraltar all Neanderthals used the same set of technologies. Not a lot of original thinking going on there. This has all sorts of problems, like where did they all learn the same tool set? Where did that knowledge come from and why didn't it change?

Second, the hash marks are not associated with anything else, nor is it reported that they are repeated anywhere else. One set, one place, once. Walk into a cave, find Mousterian tools, you have Neanderthal. Walk into a cave and it's painted like a '70s Brooklyn subway car, and everything else had been doodled on, the tools set is one of dozens locally, and you have humans.

Third, the definition of art is off. Art may not serve a practical purpose, but does do something specific. The Soluterian culture, which was modern human and followed the Mousterian, would make flint blades several time larger then normal and so thin and delicate that the could never be used as a blade. They are being used as symbols. They are art. What was found is not understood and drawing conclusions is not warranted.

Comment: Re:Corroborating Hieroglyphics? (Score 3, Informative) 202

by raque (#47762989) Attached to: How the Ancient Egyptians (Should Have) Built the Pyramids

Not in the Old Kingdom. The great extents of the Egyptian Empire are New Kingdom, 2000 or so years later. The Old Kingdom was early Bronze Age. Stone Tools were still the rule, not the exception. Bronze was difficult to make and copper tools were more common in the rare instances when metal tools were used. There are records of the gangs whose job it was to sharpen the copper chisels that were used.

We should remember that this was not the first, or the second, or the third, huge pyramid they built, it was the sixth. They had an extensive knowledge to stone and had to deal with it. The Egyptologist Cyril Aldred had an illustrative story. He was traveling down a side branch of the Nile with a local boat crew. They found their way blocked by a rock fall. He assumed that they would have to go all the way back and find a new way. The crew said they could have it cleared in a few hours and it wasn't a big deal, they do this all of the time. He was astonished to watch then use techniques that he hadn't seen before to clear the stones. They would use mud backs to hold fires in place and either splash or pour cold water on the heated stone to shatter it. That, a few levers, and their knowledge was all that was needed to move tons and tons of stone out of the way.

Comment: Re:Corroborating Hieroglyphics? (Score 3, Interesting) 202

by raque (#47762885) Attached to: How the Ancient Egyptians (Should Have) Built the Pyramids

That point of view is being argued. Read "The statues that walked" by Terry Hunt and Carl Lipo. They postulate that rats introduced by the colonists did most of the damage. The Easter Islanders dealt with this by eating the rats.

NPR article:

Comment: Re:Scientific American doesn't agree ... (Score 1) 281

by raque (#47755907) Attached to: The Evolution of Diet

That was accounted for in the study. Many mummies are accidental, as in the Chinese Desert Mummies and European Bog Bodies, or, were ritual sacrifices as in the Peruvian ones. The elite of society tend not to sacrifice themselves, that is what everyone else is for. The study also covered a large time frame with no fluctuation in findings. Even if they were elites why would bodies from different times and places have very similar disease profiles as modern western populations?

Comment: Scientific American doesn't agree ... (Score 2) 281

by raque (#47754271) Attached to: The Evolution of Diet

The October 2013 issue of Scientific American had an article named "Long Live the Humans". It concerned why humans live so long. Part of the authors analysis was the radiological examination of as many mummies as they could find from all over the world. What that showed was a distribution of chronic diseases very similar to modern populations. This argues against the premise that diet is the root of modern chronic diseases. The article argues they are genetic in their origin.

Here is a link to the article. It is only a preview, they want to to give them money to read it. A point I find reasonable.


+ - Mozilla CEO attacked about his views of Gay Marriage.

Submitted by raque
raque (457836) writes "The NYTimes is running this story about Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich being attacked about his views on Gay Marriage. The Times reported that was blocking access to their site for Firefox users.

Is there anything in the ideals of the Open Source community that is relevant to Gay Marriage and LGBT issues in general? Is supporting Gay Marriage a requirement for developing Open Source Software? As I read the story and comments I was wondering how sexual orientation fit into the GPL."

+ - Netflix slams big ISPs over Net Neutrality.

Submitted by raque
raque (457836) writes "CNN Money is carrying this story about the conflict between Netflix and the big ISPs.

Netflix is correct is saying that they shouldn't have to pay a fee to ISPs like Comcast and Verizon to do what users, like me, are already paying them to do. I already pay Verizon to provide my bandwidth, and I pay Netflix to access their content. ISPs complaining that services like Netflix generate a lot of traffic ignore the fact that they are already being paid to handle that traffic."

+ - NYTimes OP-ED on the rise of the Global Commons and the rise of Anti-Capitalism 1

Submitted by raque
raque (457836) writes "The NYTimes has this article, by Jeremy Rifkin, on how the rise of "Free" and "Open" economies are changing the world. He argues that the "Internet of Things" is driving down the Marginal Cost of of products to the point where they can't be made profitably anymore. Hence, market forces don't apply to them.

Though he crows about how this is a great thing, I do see some undersides. Do we really want people making things like Hot Water heaters for themselves?"

Comment: Ya know Lincoln comment on this - (Score 1) 398

by raque (#45330365) Attached to: Snowden Publishes "A Manifesto For the Truth"

When he said that "you can't fool all of the people all of the time". Which is just a version of the the genus of crowds. Toss in Crowd Sourcing ... just because.

And what has the crowd, the American Public, said about Snowden's comments on the aggressiveness of the NSA? "Yawn. It's nice to know were getting our money's worth out of them."

I think Americans think of it this way: "You can have either a hunting dog, or a lap dog. You can't get a dog that's both. If you have a hunting dog, it's going to get out sometimes and chase stuff. I'm not going to be angry that the hunting dog is hunting. I'll think about a new leash, tomorrow. I'm too busy doing other stuff today. Oh, and by the way, telling the truth, sometimes, is a crime."

For me, I agree with the American people. As for his concerns that his supervisors would punish him for speaking out - they very well might have. There are two other branches of government. The NSA has critics in the Congress and the Courts. He should have exhausted his other options before this. Failing to do so is a crime and he should be punished for it. It is the same as refusing to report a crime because you're convinced the police are corrupt. Did you try the State Police? The FBI?

Next question, will I be modded down as flamebait because someone disagrees with me?

Comment: Is this to make it work on tablets better? (Score 1) 1191

by raque (#45011269) Attached to: Come Try Out Slashdot's New Design (In Beta)

After I posted my last comment I had a thought. Is this to make /. work on tablets and touch screens better? If so then it should be said so. Not some bull that it is to make things more clear. It doesn't. If it is to try and get ahead of some paradigm shift then say so. I may not agree but at least there will be a reason besides some sold some idea to some manager and now he is going to shove it through so HE doesn't look like an idiot.

Comment: Is this a done deal? I saw no positive comments (Score 1) 1191

by raque (#45011251) Attached to: Come Try Out Slashdot's New Design (In Beta)

If this is the management of Dice saying we are making Slashdot us and not what Commander Taco made, then it is time to go. Everything about it is wrong.

I have never seen anything so universally hated on /. before. The design is horrible. It wastes space and what goes with what is unclear. Every new complaint is correct.

Comment: Bad. Very bad. This isn't Slashdot. (Score 1) 1191

by raque (#45011223) Attached to: Come Try Out Slashdot's New Design (In Beta)

Do not deploy this beta. This beta is terrible. It looks like the mobile site, which is why I stopped looking at Slashdot on my mobile devices. You will destroy this site.

First, Ditch the pictures. This is about reading. Then ditch the rest of the bling. They don't do anything. Nothing here helps me. It just gets in my way. You could ditch the whole website and run Slashdot as a simple BBS and it would work. Everyone who comes to Slashdot -- please post if I'm wrong -- is comfortable with a CLI. No one needs another bad copy of Gnome or KDE, which are already bad copies of Windows and MacOS.

I come to Slashdot and not Reddit or Digg because it is edited and moderated. There are some smart people picking and choosing from what is going to be put up. It is a place for nerds, people who are very comfortable with text and typing to get together and type and read. None of the rest helps.

Comment: A cellphone is replacing family!!?? (Score 4, Interesting) 682

by raque (#44989665) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Suitable Phone For a 4-Year Old?

Just so you know, I am a Stay At Home Dad and have been nothing else for 20 years. When Marissa Miller pulled the plug on working at home it was this sort of half halfheartedness that she was shaking out of Yahoo's business model. If your are working, then work and give either your employer or customers your complete attention. If you find yourself unable to separate from your child then stay home. You can't do both. Don't lie to yourself and your child that a cellphone is a replacement for your being there. It's not. When I married my wife we decided that childcare was of paramount importance. Since she was a well paid professional and I was a struggling student (Yes, I got that lucky), I stayed home. The son went to school in the day and I went at night, or he stayed with family. Yes, Family! You didn't disturb Mommy; Auntie, or Grandma, or Uncle or me or whoever took care of what needed doing. There was somebody who's job it was, and is, to take care of my son. As more children arrived my duties - Think about that word for a moment - Duty; ... my duties have continued. And by the way, Yes, that means I finally didn't finish my degree. Instead, I am there for my children. Yes I've had to sacrifice to do that. My children are worth it.

A 4 year old is not able to handle a phone and is too young to be allowed to make the judgement of when to call you. They need to know to call 911 in an emergency and stay on until help arrives - unless there is a fire, then they get out! Go to someone trusted and have then call for help. That is it. They should be cared for 24-7 and their caregiver will make any calls needed. If you can't trust your child's caregiver to make every fucking decision that needs to be made get another caregiver or do it yourself ! A cell phone will quickly become a stick to bully whomever is the caregiver. "If you don't give me more ice cream I'll call daddy and he'll be angry at you"

Save your money and send your kid to a good school. I always recommend a Montessori if at all possible. You will learn that one of the first steps to raising a healthy, happy and independent adult is having them learn to separate. They start to learn this at about 4. Yes you go away, and yes you come back. At school they learn to operate as a member of a society with rules and responsibilities. With family you learn to be part of a family. A mutually dependent social structure. That means every member needs every other. This is what you want, to raise a good person.

The shortest distance between two points is under construction. -- Noelie Alito