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Comment: hmm (Score 1) 285

by superwiz (#49155307) Attached to: We Stopped At Two Nuclear Bombs; We Can Stop At Two Degrees.
If a technological change in our way of life can release the carbon, then why does everyone insist that there is not technological change which can reduce the carbon? And I don't mean stop the release through alternative energy sources. I mean reduce. Mind you, I am not accepting or denying the premise of AGW. I am asking a different question.

Comment: Re:what conflict? (Score 1) 438

by superwiz (#49120517) Attached to: How One Climate-Change Skeptic Has Profited From Corporate Interests

Actually, I think an even stronger statement can be made. I think it is unethical of the journals to require revealing sources of funding before publication. Some scientific inquiry (such as this, for example) may pose undue burden on its sponsors. Requiring that sponsorship be revealed inhibits free scientific inquiry. Consider another hypothetical example: an illicit narcotics distributor may want to sponsor research into the long-term medical effects of some legal drug use vs illegal drug use. If a researcher is required to reveal taking money from such a source of funding, he cannot do so without damaging his reputation. But this prevents honest scientific look at a medically pertinent question because it prevents any kind of funding from being given to qualified researchers who may want to investigate such a question.

In fact, the researchers should be required to reveal their data much more so than they should be required to reveal their source of funding. But this is a requirement that most journals do not have.

Research should be considered on its merit. The assumption should be made that there are vested interests on both sides of any controversial scientific issue and the source of funding should not be considered as a data point in evaluating the legitimacy of research

Comment: Re:what conflict? (Score 1) 438

by superwiz (#49120409) Attached to: How One Climate-Change Skeptic Has Profited From Corporate Interests
I'd say it's an indication of interest rather than a conflict of interest. The money is not contingent on the results of the findings. The fact that sponsors have an agenda is not news. Generally, disclosing the source of funding is an expression of gratitude rather than an ethical requirement. If the donors wish to remain anonymous, they should have that prerogative. They are only sponsoring scientific research, after all.

Comment: bad summary. (Score 0) 438

by superwiz (#49103461) Attached to: How One Climate-Change Skeptic Has Profited From Corporate Interests
How does this:

At least 11 papers he has published since 2008 omitted such a disclosure,

square off with this:

The Koch Brothers are cited as a source of Dr. Soon's funding.

Oh, and btw, citing the source of research funding is generally considered a form of thanking the source for the funding rather than a necessary disclosure.

Comment: what conflict? (Score 2) 438

by superwiz (#49103429) Attached to: How One Climate-Change Skeptic Has Profited From Corporate Interests
Receiving money to conduct research is conflict of interest if the funds come from parties with vested interest in findings' results? 1.2 million over a decade is hardly a "fortune". It's on par with grants received by any small-size lab. In fact, probably much less. If he is quoted as often as the summary claims, he should be receiving at least 5 times as much in government funding.

Comment: No, absolutely not. (Score 1) 182

by superwiz (#49103285) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How Can Technology Improve the Judicial System?
The only thing which can improve the judicial system is making it as luddite as possible. US has a common law legal system. All common law systems have O(n!) complexity. Any attempts to fight the expanding complexity by hiring more lawyers are attempts at linear scaling (O(n)) solutions to O(n!) problems. Adding computers into the mix allows for exponential solutions O(n^K). Which creates the illusion of solving the problem because O(n^K) > O(n). But, for sufficiently large n and any fixed K, O(n^K) O(n!). So this creates a problem which will manifest itself as the system collapses under its own complexity with justice becoming completely impossible. The only reason that common law system existed and were viable before computers is that people forget. So all attempts at hiring more lawyers go out the windows and O(n) does grow very large; laws which are at the centers of the nodes which cause common law spider web of irrevocable "precedents" get repealed. But hiding this obvious need for repealing certain laws inside of the O(n^k) solutions makes near impossible to discern which laws need repealing. Which causes the whole legal system to collapse. The only solution to winning this game is not to play.

Comment: Re: Wait ... (Score 1) 196

by superwiz (#49099373) Attached to: A123 Sues Apple For Poaching Employees

An employer can't make you sign a contract that says "...and I will be your slave forever and will never work for another company."

"I'll be your slave forever", no, they can't. "I will never seek any form of employment anywhere else", yes, one most certainly can enter into such a contract. Even if no future considerations are given. It may not be prudent, but one can enter into such a contract.

As long one enters into it with full knowledge (not likely), one can agree to such terms. People exchange immediate considerations for future opportunities all the time (selling proceeds from future rights for immediate cash payout would be one such example). And no one "forced" anyone to sign a contract. Employment can be employment at will without any contract restricting the terms beyond those established by laws.

Having said all of this, I still don't understand how they can sue Apple for violating terms of a contract to which Apple is not a party.

Comment: Re:First people complain about not poaching (Score 1) 196

by superwiz (#49099353) Attached to: A123 Sues Apple For Poaching Employees
Apple's not a party to the agreement though, are they? This isn't a criminal matter, so it's not like they can be co-conspirators in causing damages to the claimants. Whatever damage they suffered, can only be caused by the violating employees themselves. 123 can try suing the employees for breach, but if I were in their place, I'd already have had a deal with Apple to cover legal costs in such a contingency.

Comment: what do you expect? (Score 0) 481

by superwiz (#48986227) Attached to: DOT Warns of Dystopian Future For Transportation
when George Bush's title "the last US President" should be the more permanent "The Last US President"? Yeah, yeah, flamebait me into oblivious, but no matter how leftist you are, you know Obama doesn't even bother with the law even if you agree with his goals. At least, Bush hired lawyers before deciding on where to walk the fine line between legal and illegal. Obama's more of a "law shmoe" kind of executive. So his DOT puts out SciFi as prediction for the future. Sure. Why not. He can't say we are in a recession because that would mean that we are. He can't say that Romney's plan for solving the national health care problems was better than his plan (and than Romney's plan for solving MA health care problems), he can't say that Russia is waging war in the Middle East (and winning) in order to divert attention from its war in Europe. Never mind that he can't say that the only way he could figure out how to solve the housing crises was to inflate the prices of everything else until they kept up with the prices of inflated housing market. So he puts out SciFi from DOT. Why not?

It is not for me to attempt to fathom the inscrutable workings of Providence. -- The Earl of Birkenhead