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Comment: This wasn't delayed by injustice (Score 0) 107

by bluefoxlucid (#49785007) Attached to: A Ph.D Thesis Defense Delayed By Injustice 77 Years

Her defense wasn't delayed by injustice; it was delayed by assholes. Injustice is a thing, a concept, one not entirely tied to reality; it is an abstract aligned to our moral beliefs. We don't consider the vicious treatment of pedophiles in America injustice because we hate them, even though empirically we can make some arguments about mental health and the fermentation of social pressures forcing people with an internal sickness into hiding, stress, and then the shape of something they could have avoided with proper social support. We consider victimization of Jews injustice because we've started this moral narrative about how hating on Jews is bad.

The fact of the matter is it's people who made decisions about their regards toward and actions about race that delayed this Ph.D. defense. It's assholes. It's people who decided to bar this from being heard. Injustice is a diffuse thing, like the injustice of a court system which executes more blacks than whites on similar evidence; it lifts blame off the participants and onto the mode of society or of misfortune. We pretend these actors don't exist, or at least that they aren't directly responsible for their actions, even though the victims are directly burdened by them. That nebulous ideal is immaterial to the consequences of society; the fact that people went along with it instead of using their human reason and empathy to decide against these happenings is squarely the fault of those people, not the fault of the speculation about what those people did.

What happened wasn't wrong; *you* were wrong for doing it.

Comment: Re:You know what would REALLY motivate kids? (Score 1) 184

The only way to ensure the possibility of a good paying job is to match labor supply with labor demand; that is, to make sure there aren't 100,000,000 computer programmers and 4,000,000 programming jobs.

"Keeping the US Economy competitive" is ludicrous. It's like eating shitloads of donuts to keep a sumo wrestler competitive: your body gets sick and you die, and all you really need is good sumo skills to wrestle people in your weight class successfully.

The US economy won't be competitive if it's completely and totally ill from a glut of computer science specialists and the constant suppression of salaries by state-subsidized college education. If the US economy runs well, a well-tuned machine with all of the parts correctly built and sized for need, it will outperform any other economy on earth. An arms race to stockpile perishable goods we have no intent nor ability to use before they expire is only going to make us a poor and shaky economy weak in the things we sacrifice for stacking up tons of tomatoes that are going to rot away next month.

Comment: Re:Stupid (Score 1) 387

Brainstorming sessions don't require large, complex diagrams because large, complex diagrams come out of decision-making processes, and brainstorming is an idea-generating process. Generating ideas in the same meeting in which you make decisions inevitably leads to poor decisions; meetings are for exactly one of exchanging information, generating alternatives, or making decisions.

Comment: Re:stable (Score -1, Offtopic) 225

It's more rational than "omg it's not actually stable it eats your data!" OpenBSD had an exploitable flaw in X11 for like 26 years; Microsoft has been in the spotlight enough that we've seen this dozens of times, security, data loss, that whole thing called Windows ME... What do you want to compare to?

Comment: Re:Stupid (Score 1) 387

Working with people in different continents means brainstorming with them too.

You're not going to get complicated designs out of a brainstorm session. If you do, you've conflated it with a decision session, and have started doing design in your meeting. This invariably leads to bad decisions and bad design.

Comment: Re:Tolls? (Score 1) 826

by bluefoxlucid (#49738119) Attached to: Oregon Testing Pay-Per-Mile Driving Fee To Replace Gas Tax

The question is how long you can go without maintenance and repair--what's the cost over time?

It's like when you hit someone's parked car and they make your insurance pay to fix their fucked-up door, but the door had already been smashed in by them hitting a fire hydrant 2 years prior. How much more damage did you really do? Well, okay, a lot. How much more cost did you add to the repair? None. Why should you have to pay for it? Largely, because you're a shitty driver.

It doesn't make sense to me to claim that drivers of big vehicles causing big damage to roads should be proportionally more responsible for the damage they cause, rather than the usage they make, when much of the damage is unmitigated wear and tear--when the road takes its greatest damage from freeze-thaw cycles. If 10% of the damage is caused by vehicle traffic--that is, if the amortized cost-per-year is only 90% as much with no traffic as it is with traffic--then 10% of the cost should be scaled based on traffic damage, and the other 90% is most fair scaled to bulk usage.

Of course, scaling for bulk usage is stupid, too. It makes the percentage of income paid toward road maintenance higher for lower-income users.

Comment: Re:Tolls? (Score 1) 826

by bluefoxlucid (#49737089) Attached to: Oregon Testing Pay-Per-Mile Driving Fee To Replace Gas Tax

Than again, all-electric vehicles don't pay a dime for road maintenance. Maybe a per-mile charge is better.

Then you get better public transit infrastructure, or someone builds a valuable economic center (shopping mall, big office park) near a major population area, and people flat-out drive less.

I argue for a Citizen's Dividend funded by a flat 17% income tax on all business and individual income. By comparison, Social Security is funded by a separate OASDI tax of 6.2%, plus 6.2% payroll, capped on $117k income. What happens when wealth distribution changes? What happens when we have inflation, and the sheer amount of income below $117k is proportionally less than the amount above $117k? What happens when the tax on wage workers drives their wage demand up along with that 6.2% payroll that the business pays, and so labor is more expensive, and so they pay for more expensive management strategies (e.g. implement cellular manufacture, better project management, or automation) to reduce the number of employees and the amount they pay them?

The same thing is happening with roads as with a cap-and-dividend--another scheme some UBI advocates propose, in which we'd tax, e.g., pollution, and pay the tax revenue out to everyone equally. What happens when they switch to solar energy? What happens when people stop driving their cars as much? What happens when they get more efficient cars? What happens when they get electric cars? The weather and asshole plant roots do more damage to the roads than your tires, even if nobody ever drives on them.

Fuel taxes become per-mile taxes because people get more efficient cars. Per-mile taxes fail because people drive less thanks to positive economic factors (localized business, mass transit availability) and evasive behavior (moped ebike, which require no registration). What then?

Taxes on individual activities are also regressive, just as taxes on business are business-target. Taxing factory pollution output? I guarantee you I don't output 2.4 metric tonnes of coal-source CO2 per hour. Taxing liquor per liter of alcohol? I guarantee you a rich man will die of alcohol poisoning after just as much alcohol in one day as a poor man; it'll cost the same in taxes; and the rich man will have much less of his income taxed by the alcohol tax. Driving is the same: a rich man with $25,000,000 yearly income will not drive 2000 times as many miles as a poor man with $12,000--that's 24 million miles of driving, a thousand trips around the earth's circumference, or lapping the earth 2.7 times per day.

Taxing per driven mile means the rich man will be taxed a lower percentage of his income than a poor man, while any habitual behavior which reduces number of miles driven will reduce the income from this tax.

Comment: Re:Stupid (Score 1) 387

by bluefoxlucid (#49736903) Attached to: Microsoft To Teachers: Using Pens and Paper Not Fair To Students

Yeah, but that breaks down in two primary situations: when you're in a hall with 1000 people, and when you're working remotely with 10 or 15 people who all have access to draw on a virtual whiteboard and thus need to be herded like cats.

Other graphical tools require more forethought, and so do important meetings with large project groups spread across wide geographical areas. At a point, the whiteboard isn't even a feasible tool, because spot-generation of more than a tiny fragment of the information you're exchanging is going to draw out your meeting into an unending mess of poorly-communicated ideas. That particular problem starts developing just slightly before the whiteboard ceases to be a feasible tool by its own nature: the whiteboard stops being an efficient tool before it ceases to be an effective tool.

You need to start bringing graphical diagrams and slideshows, models, and whatnot. Plan the meeting agenda ahead of time, distribute it, and make sure people have the information they're presenting ready. If it's a 20 minute meeting with 4 people in the same room and nothing complex to cover, get a white board; if it's a 20 minute meeting with 4 people on an online meeting, use a virtual whiteboard; if you have 12 teams and 35 people, tell them to have their shit ready when they get there.

"Your attitude determines your attitude." -- Zig Ziglar, self-improvement doofus