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Comment Re:Wait, physics doesn't work either? (Score 1) 181

It is shameful that you were modded up for that comment, it shows how little people on slashdot understand about psychology.

The more they understand about it, the worse it looks.

Quite the opposite most of the time. A big problem here is that a lot of people (particularly people on slashdot, though this happens in many other circles as well) think they know a lot about psychology because they have read a lot of angry rants against it, even though they have never had formal exposure to the fundamentals or history of psychology.

If you have some interest in the outcome, for example if you yourself are a psychologist, it would be considered a minimal level of integrity to disclose that ... since we're speaking of ethics now.

I am not a psychologist. I have friends and colleagues who are, and I took psychology as an undergrad. My work is in a more contemporary hard science.

It is noteworthy that you call up ethics here, when earlier in the same comment you said

That ethical concerns are part of the cause is irrelevant.

Nice of you to so consistently show concern for ethics.

Oh further along those lines, I wonder just how much the field is influenced by the incredible profitability of prescription drugs?

Last time I checked, few states allow psychologists to write drug prescriptions, that job is usually left to (medical school trained) psychiatrists (wikipedia shows only three states grant that ability to psychologists in the US). Psychologists have little to gain financially by encouraging pharmacological treatments for their patients.

I bet that would be a fascinating research topic.

The most commonly prescribed (in terms of patients who have had it prescribed to them) drug for mental health use is Prozac, which has been available generic for some time. Once a drug has become available generic, the profit is nearly gone. If you want to look in to the prescribing rates of new drugs for mental health versus other health conditions, and compare which are prescribed more quickly, that may indeed be an interesting topic. Your bias is so evident here though that I would be shocked if you were to ever attempt to undertake such a study.

Comment Re:I'm not sure this is the right response (Score 1) 182

I'm not so sure that nobody was doing any investigating or prosecution. Just because there wasn't front-page news about such an action doesn't mean it wasn't being done. The wheels of justice don't always turn quickly, and fraud investigations in particular are seldom quick.

First, you would need to prove this.

It is generally (at the very least) very difficult to prove a negative. There are a lot of variables at play as well; if the Canadian Mounties prosecute AM would the FBI go for it as well on behalf of American victims? If the company goes bankrupt entirely (I haven't seen any suggestion yet that this would happen, but just to consider another possible situation) would anyone bother to prosecute afterwards? What they did was criminal but not murder. If we think of other cases of fraud - Goldman Sachs and Enron come to mind - the prosecution does sometimes fold completely when the company goes broke, regardless of the fate of the people from that company who held the power to make fraudulent decisions.

Intentionally dragging feet leads to vigilantism for the same exact reason a lack of action does.

That is a rather high accusation, there. When did someone first bring accusations about the fraudulent activity of the site to the attention of authorities? Wikipedia tells us the site launched in 2001, with a lawsuit against them that went through in 2012. We don't know if anyone up to that point ever brought this site to the attention of law enforcement with allegations of fraud.

You are entitled to your opinion but the fact of the matter is that Schwartz in particular was an idiot who broke the law and deserved to be punished. He did not deserve to die but he made that choice himself. These hackers are comparable to him, but neither are comparable to Snowden or Manning.

Thanks for letting me know what my opinion was instead of asking. I didn't give an opinion positive or negative, I simply stated that these hackers are not very different from those people.

Reread what I wrote before criticizing me for writing it. I added emphasis to a part of what you quoted to direct your attention.

Comment Re:huh? (Score 1) 85

"Leftists in general" is not the same as any one party you can name.

It doesn't matter if it is one party, 12 parties, or an infinite number of parties. The statement "leftists" automatically includes some people and excludes some other people. You are trying to establish a "fallacy" that can never apply to you, in spite of the fact that no fallacy on the site currently exists in such a narrow focus. You are asking a site that has tried hard to be non-partisan to take in your strictly partisan new "fallacy".

If you want to celebrate it on your own blog, go ahead. I highly doubt they would be foolish enough to adopt it on theirs.

Comment Re:Veterans care (Score 1) 30

Can we have an adult conversation?

I'd love to. Care to join me?

Her Majesty
#OccupyResoluteDesk.
your shrill, prissy cries for "fair trials"

Apparently, you don't.

as though she isn't going to be pardoned

If you believe she's going to be pardoned, then why do you get yourself so worked up in this conspiracy? Why even bother going forward if you are so certain of the outcome?

Or is that your justification for your armchair prosecution based on nothing but your feelings - you have convinced yourself that your hand can only lose, so you might as well play it out as loudly as you possibly can without regard for facts?

Bug

Journal Journal: Who Screwed Up Rendering This Week? 1

My browser didn't change (firefox 38.0). My OS didn't change (ubuntu 14.04.1 LTS). My internet connection didn't change (nope, not telling you who). I was travelling this week and thought maybe the craptacular rendering of slashdot was the result of it detecting me to be coming from some place else. Now I am back home and the page is still rendering poorly.

Comment Re:From TFA: bit-exact or not? (Score 1) 124

There used to be a web page called "Your Eyes Suck at Blue". You might find it on the Wayback machine.

You can tell the luminance of each individual channel more precisely than you can perceive differences in mixed color. This is due to the difference between rod and cone cells. Your perception of the color gamut is, sorry, imprecise. I'm sure that you really can't discriminate 256 bits of blue in the presence of other, varying, colors.

Comment Re:From TFA: bit-exact or not? (Score 5, Insightful) 124

Rather than abuse every commenter who has not joined your specialty on Slashdot, please take the source and write about what you find.

Given that CPU and memory get less expensive over time, it is no surprise that algorithms work practically today that would not have when various standards groups started meeting. Ultimately, someone like you can state what the trade-offs are in clear English, and indeed whether they work at all, which is more productive than trading naah-naahs.

Comment Re:I'm not sure this is the right response (Score 1) 182

Just because they used illegal techniques to attack a morally reprehensible company doesn't mean their techniques are magically vindicated. Celebrating the hack is immoral as well.

If the hacker gets caught, he'll end up in jail, but tell me you didn't smile when you first heard about the hack. It's pretty hilarious.

I don't care for AM. If what I read about them on wikipedia (in particular the number of bogus "female" accounts that exist primarily to separate men from their money) is true they are a terrible operation. However, the hack did not show us what is written about them on wikipedia, other work did. This is the information that will be the most useful towards shutting them down (as a fraudulent operation).

Pretending that the hack did some kind of great public good itself does no public good.

Comment Re:I'm not sure this is the right response (Score 1) 182

nobody was doing any investigating or prosecution.

I'm not so sure that nobody was doing any investigating or prosecution. Just because there wasn't front-page news about such an action doesn't mean it wasn't being done. The wheels of justice don't always turn quickly, and fraud investigations in particular are seldom quick.

I'm sure that Canada has laws to protect consumers from deceptive advertising tactics and fraud.

I'm pretty sure they do as well.

If not, the US could request that Canada extradite the people responsible and provide full criminal prosecution.

That would be difficult (although I expect the Canadian laws would be more than sufficient). There are many cases of international fraud being committed over the internet with American victims, and very few (if any) result in the perpetrators being extradited.

people are too busy looking for the vigilante to see why someone thought it necessary.

I have seen far more people celebrating the vigilantes than people searching for them. For that matter, more people seem to be searching for them to celebrate them than to seek them to be prosecuted for themselves breaking the law. This sets a bad precedent for future vigilante hacking.

I see them "not so" different from Snowden, Manning, Schwartz

You are entitled to your opinion but the fact of the matter is that Schwartz in particular was an idiot who broke the law and deserved to be punished. He did not deserve to die but he made that choice himself. These hackers are comparable to him, but neither are comparable to Snowden or Manning.

Comment Re:I'm not sure this is the right response (Score 3, Insightful) 182

I do not think many people are celebrating these hackers

Admittedly, it is hard to say how many people are celebrating them. However, there have been plenty of posts and stories here on slashdot that have been. And when hackers (and wannabe hackers) see that publicity they might consider going that way against something that they dislike as well...

Comment I'm not sure this is the right response (Score 4, Insightful) 182

Make no mistake, I don't like what Ashley Madison did. They've been exposed for running a scam web site designed to sucker men out of lots of money quickly. However, that doesn't justify the hack - which is almost certainly a criminal offense at this level. Sure, the hackers took down the CEO of Ashley Madison, but we don't know what will happen next. They might just relaunch with the same aims and different window dressing. Meanwhile we seem to be celebrating the actions of the hackers, in spite of the fact that they did break the law.

Just because they used illegal techniques to attack a morally reprehensible company doesn't mean their techniques are magically vindicated. Celebrating the hack is immoral as well.

Comment Re:huh? (Score 1) 85

It's as partisan as you make it.

Did you read your own JE? As you quoted:

I think this fallacy deserves its own name because I think this is the central economic fallacy of leftists in general. Whether we are talking about unions, public workers, redistributionists, etc., there is always the implicit idea that somewhere there is this big pile of money that the rich business people are hoarding away like a squirrel with its winter store of nuts. Leftists tell everyone that all problems can be solved if we just use the force of the state to threaten the squirrels to give up their nuts.

That "fallacy" is inherently partisan. It is inherently directed at specific people who you do not like. It is quite impossible for it to not be partisan.

By contrast, yourlogicalfallacyis.com is not a partisan site. There is no fallacy on there that can only be committed by a person of a particular political stance, or that is impossible for someone of a different political stance to commit. The people who put the site together - whose identity is not known to me beyond what is available through a WHOIS (note: the WHOIS record has only a gmail address, with no name or other contact information) - likely do hold some political beliefs, but they do not make those beliefs apparent on the site.

Comment Re:Veterans care (Score 1) 30

I understand that in spite of your assertions to the contrary, even democrats in this country are innocent until proven guilty. You are claiming that Hillary Clinton is guilty because you hate her. You have no evidence to back up your claim that she was moving classified information through her server, or you would have already shown it.

Comment Re:Veterans care (Score 1) 30

Anybody who ever served on active duty and handled classified information is just a bit hacked off at Her Majesty's cavalier attitude about, well, everything.

That's true, but comparing Hillary's sending and receiving emails that weren't marked as classified over a non-government server is absolutely NOTHING compared to Petraus' knowingly giving top secret information to someone with neither a need to know nor a security clearance. Remember Mata Hari? (I probably spelled that wrong)

Plus, his adultery is strictly against the USMJ code; people have gotten dishonorable discharges for that alone, and anyone else would have gotten time in Leavenworth for spilling secrets. Petraus got off not with a slap on the wrist, but a stern talking to.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Gimpy text and Mars

I use the Gnu Image Manipulation Program (GIMP) to design book covers. It's an excellent free open source program that has three weaknesses -- its menu structure is completely illogical (but can be gotten used to), I can't find a full spectrum palette, and its text handling is so poor as to be useless.

The rule on staying alive as a program manager is to give 'em a number or give 'em a date, but never give 'em both at once.

Working...