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Comment Re:The roots of suicide are buried in religion (Score 1) 498

People suffering horrible pain, whether mental or physical, have something to offer.

You are likely right that we stand to gain something from their continued suffering. The question is, do they stand to get something in return that is a fair bargain? When life's compensations are too little, and its costs too great, we are selfish and wrong to demand that another person go on living for our benefit.

Comment Awesome Opportunity (Score 1) 4

Without valid trademark registrations, the Washington Redskins have no trademarks to infringe. Now, before they change their name, is the perfect time for entrepreneurs to take advantage of all the money the Redskins organization spent on developing the brand. Quick! Open a Washington Redskins Pizza, Washington Redskins Gym, Washington Redskins Football Jerseys and Souvenirs Shop.

Submission + - Washington Redskins stripped of trademarks 4

BillCable writes:

In a major blow to the Washington Redskins, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Wednesday canceled six federal trademarks of the “Washington Redskins” team name because it was found to be “disparaging” to Native Americans.

“We decide, based on the evidence properly before us, that these registrations must be cancelled because they were disparaging to Native Americans at the respective times they were registered,” the PTO’s Trademark Trial and Appeal Board wrote. The panel voted 2-1 in favor of the decision.

Perhaps this move will speed up the inevitable name change which was expected within the next few years.

Comment Re:Less consumer choice, higher prices ahead (Score 1) 158

I thought it was generally accepted that T-mobile had the best service

I think T-Mobile's good reputation is based on an earlier period when they did in fact have excellent service. In the first few years when I was a T-Mobile customer, they called me on a number of occasions to say they had reviewed my usage and that I was paying too much. They offered each time to change my service plan, guaranteeing that my bills would go down. The first time, I was suspicious but risked it. My bills did actually go down. Now, however, they are no better than AT&T on service. T-Mobile had a rep at an HR-sponsored benefits event at the university where I work, and they offered an employee discount for new data plans. I moved my family plan from AT&T to T-Mobile. Getting the discount applied to my account turned out to be an extreme hassle. All the customer service people, including supervisors and managers, refused to apply the promised discount, even though I sent them documentation of the offer. It wasn't until I looked up the email addresses of VP level execs and CC'd them and our HR director on my complaints that they finally honored their promise.

Submission + - A Measure of Your Team's Health: How You Treat Your "Idiot"->

Esther Schindler writes: Every team has someone who at the bottom of its bell curve: an individual who has a hard time keeping up with other team members. How your team members treat that person is a significant indicator of your organization’s health.

That's especially true for open source projects, where you can't really reject someone's help. All you can do is encourage participation... including by the team "dummy."

Link to Original Source

Submission + - EU Court of Justice Paves Way for "Right to be Forgotten" Online

Mark.JUK writes: The European Court of Justice (ECJ) has today ruled that Google, Bing and others, acting as internet search engine operators, are responsible for the processing that they carry out of personal data which appears on web pages published by third parties. As a result any searches made on the basis of a person’s name that returns links/descriptions for web pages containing information on the person in question can, upon request by the related individual, be removed.

The decision supports calls for a so-called "right to be forgotten" by Internet privacy advocates, which ironically the European Commission are already working to implement via new legislation. Google failed to argue that such a decision would be unfair because the information was already legally in the public domain.

Comment Re:Knowledge (Score 1) 1037

Two words: free will.

Three more words: does not exist

Read:

Nisbett, Richard, & Wilson, Timothy. (1977). Telling more than we can know: Verbal reports on mental processes. Psychological Review, 84, 231-259.

Shows that even after we have made a supposedly free choice, we don't know what were the real determinants of our behavior. We report plausible, but baseless explanations.

Libet, Benjamin (1985). "Unconscious Cerebral Initiative and the Role of Conscious Will in Voluntary Action". The Behavioral and Brain Sciences 8: 529â"566.

Shows that unconscious neural processes that launch behavior precede the decision to do the behavior. We feel like we made a free choice to act after the act has already begun.

An experimental assessment of facilitated communication. Wheeler, Douglas L.; Jacobson, John W.; Paglieri, Raymond A.; Schwartz, Allen A. Mental Retardation, Vol 31(1), Feb 1993, 49-59.

Shows that even when we are certain we are not doing something we adamantly say we would not do, we unconsciously choose...but not freely...to do it.

Submission + - Wisdom of Crows Demonstrates Wisdom of Aesop 1

Rambo Tribble writes: Using New Caledonian crows captured from the wild, scientists have demonstrated the corvids' ability to master the task of retrieving food by displacing water, inspired by the classic Aesop fable of the "Crow and the Pitcher". Per the researchers: 'In their understanding of physics — how objects displace water — the crows were comparable to 5-to-7-year-old children ...' Reuters provides an approachable summation of the news, here.

Comment Re:Adblock! (Score 1) 111

By telling me, in effect: Hey Asshole. We'll delete your account if and when we want to, but we sure in the hell aren't doing it when you ask us to. they set a dangerous precedent, and make clear that they will do whatever the hell they please with your^H^H^H^Htheir account.

Are you starting to see the issue now?

No, but I see what you think is the issue. Before, you just sounded unreasonable. Now you seem maybe hyper-vigilant, but at least not nuts.

Our OS who art in CPU, UNIX be thy name. Thy programs run, thy syscalls done, In kernel as it is in user!

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