Forgot your password?

Comment: Re:PR works well? Where? (Score 1) 268

by khallow (#48480143) Attached to: Mathematicians Study Effects of Gerrymandering On 2012 Election

Certainly the collapse of both the Weimar Republic and the French 4th Republic are usually blamed on their use of PR; I remain to be convinced its the optimal solution.

It's interesting how people retcon history.

The Wiemar Republic was imposed by force by parties who wanted to keep Germany weak following Germany's defeat in the First World War. So sure, the selection of a proportional representation system is a bit damning.

But various parties (particularly, the German military and allied industrialists and nobility) were working towards the destruction of the Weimar Republic since its creation (long before Hitler became a factor). A more unified government would have just made the transition even faster.

As to the Fourth French Republic, they lost Dien Bien Phu (and as a result French Indochina) and were set to repeat that performance in Algeria. That gets blamed on the disunity from proportional representation, but I just don't see France keeping these territories no matter what government it has. They were still rebuilding after the destruction of the Second World War. First-Past-The-Post doesn't magically build up a powerful military in a few short years.

Comment: Re:Unexpected technical issues (Score 3, Insightful) 136

by lennier1 (#48478355) Attached to: Ubisoft Apologizes For Assassin's Creed


Their news embargo basically equaled a goddamn GAG ORDER and they really want to convince us that this wasn't because they knew all along what a train wreck they were about to sell and to prevent he media prom warning the customers??? It was fraud, plain and simple and they now want to get people to accept some of their other crap as compensation so they won't be able to join a class-action lawsuit.

+ - Mathematicians Study Effects of Gerrymandering on 2012 Election 1

Submitted by (3830033) writes "Gerrymandering is the practice of establishing a political advantage for a political party by manipulating district boundaries to concentrate all your opponents votes in a few districts while keeping your party's supporters as a majority in the remaining districts. For example, in North Carolina in 2012 Republicans ended up winning nine out of 13 congressional seats even though more North Carolinians voted for Democrats than Republicans statewide. Now Jessica Jones reports that researchers at Duke are studying the mathematical explanation for the discrepancy. Mathematicians Jonathan Mattingly and Christy Vaughn created a series of district maps using the same vote totals from 2012, but with different borders. Their work was governed by two principles of redistricting: a federal rule requires each district have roughly the same population and a state rule requires congressional districts to be compact. Using those principles as a guide, they created a mathematical algorithm to randomly redraw the boundaries of the state’s 13 congressional districts. "We just used the actual vote counts from 2012 and just retabulated them under the different districtings," says Vaughn. "”If someone voted for a particular candidate in the 2012 election and one of our redrawn maps assigned where they live to a new congressional district, we assumed that they would still vote for the same political party."

The results were startling. After re-running the election 100 times with a randomly drawn nonpartisan map each time, the average simulated election result was 7 or 8 U.S. House seats for the Democrats and 5 or 6 for Republicans. The maximum number of Republican seats that emerged from any of the simulations was eight. The actual outcome of the election — four Democratic representatives and nine Republicans – did not occur in any of the simulations. "If we really want our elections to reflect the will of the people, then I think we have to put in safeguards to protect our democracy so redistrictings don't end up so biased that they essentially fix the elections before they get started," says Mattingly. But North Carolina State Senator Bob Rucho is unimpressed. "I'm saying these maps aren't gerrymandered," says Rucho. "It was a matter of what the candidates actually was able to tell the voters and if the voters agreed with them. Why would you call that uncompetitive?""

Comment: Re:Introduction already $$$ (Score 3, Interesting) 69

by rtb61 (#48477779) Attached to: Researchers Discover an "Off Switch" For Pain In the Brain

There is if course nothing more profitable that treating the symptoms rather than curing the affliction, yet they always cry the loudest when they succeed at treating the symptoms without curing the affliction, bless their greedy little hearts. Personally I would like to hear more about stem cell therapy to repair damaged nerves.

+ - Renewables are now Scotland's biggest energy source 2

Submitted by AmiMoJo
AmiMoJo (196126) writes "Government figures revealed that Scotland is now generating more power from "clean" technologies than nuclear, coal and gas. The combination of wind, solar and hydroelectric, along with less-publicised sources such as landfill gas and biomass, produced 10.3TWh in the first half of 2014. Over the same period, Scotland generated 7.8TWh from nuclear, 5.6TWh from coal and 1.4TWh from gas, according to figures supplied by National Grid. Renewable sources tend to fluctuate throughout the year, especially in Scotland where the weather is notoriously volatile, but in six-month chunks the country has consistently increased its renewable output."

Comment: Re:Poe's law (Score 1) 210

by rtb61 (#48477491) Attached to: Google Should Be Broken Up, Say European MPs

Keep in mind Alta Vista, Info Seek and MSN search and how Google came out on top. So private search engines where basically after initiating your search you skipped straight to page 5 or more of the results and started from there, that how Google gained it's initial advantage and since it has become dominant stated to abandon. Governments routinely outperform private industry especially when their actions are subject to public purview. Give up on your ohhh ahhh private bullshit, it is a marketing PR lie and has been routinely exposed over the decades. Of course you post is a prime example of for profit, private, public relations smear and I am not laughing, I am just tired of the PR=B$ lies (lies for profit).

+ - Researchers Discover an 'Off Switch' For Pain in the Brain-> 1

Submitted by concertina226
concertina226 (2447056) writes "Scientists working together from several international universities have discovered that it is possible to block a pathway in the brain of animals suffering from neuropathic pain, which could have a huge impact on improving pain relief in humans.

So far, the most successful ways to treat chronic pain from a pharmacological point of view are to create drugs that that interact or interfere with various channels in the brain to decrease pain, including adrenergic, opioid and calcium receptors.

However, there is another way – a chemical stimulator called adenosine that binds to brain receptors to trigger a biological response.

Adenosine has shown potential for killing pain in humans, but so far, no one has managed to harness this pain pathway successfully without causing a myriad of side effects.

Led by Dr Daniela Salvemini of SLU, the researchers discovered that by activating the A3 adenosine receptor in the rodents' brains and spinal cords, the receptor was able to prevent or reverse pain from nerve damage (the cause of chronic pain)."

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:No clue? (Score 2) 210

by rtb61 (#48477159) Attached to: Google Should Be Broken Up, Say European MPs

Gees, I made it pretty clear I wanted a choice, either use public or private with the public one subject to full public review and with the ability to filter out results and promote others ie leaving you in total control. Do you not read and comprehend. Google can do what ever the crap it wants with searches as long as people have reasonable alternatives to select from and likely a government managed version with clear public rules and guide lines with actual end user control over the results is the best option, as long as of course it only remains an option and not government forced choice.

Comment: Re:At that price point, not much... (Score 1) 104

by rtb61 (#48477145) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best Drone For $100-$150?

Current feel in the regulations market means, keep it small and cheap because likely new laws will mean major restrictions and strict licensing requirements based upon capability and use, beyond restricted use on private property with the owners permission. This will vary with countries over time, keep in mind some countries already have strict restrictions on model aircraft use, with or without camera. How far off are those laws, it really depends upon location. So check local laws and make an estimate upon future laws and you'll thank me later, when you don't get something that you wont be able to use later without facing a major fine if you get caught ;)

"Never ascribe to malice that which is caused by greed and ignorance." -- Cal Keegan