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Comment Re:Number of _known_ dangers (Score 4, Insightful) 143

Indeed. The worst of them have/had been in use for a century or more. Paint and gasoline used to have lead. I remember reading about a mushroom hunter who had gotten sick after eating some wild mushrooms she'd found on the side of the road. They weren't a toxic species; she'd gotten lead poisoning from gasoline fumes the fungi had absorbed. Kids were rendered mentally retarded from eating paint chips. Thermometers contained mercury, and when one broke us kids would play with the amazing metal. Yet at one point in school my IQ was measured at 150 (I'm sure I'm a lot dumber now, I've been exposed to toxins all my life).

The biggest danger to children's brains is women drinking while pregnant. I've seen it all too many times in my six decades, it's incredibly sad. Other, more dangerous dangers are blows to the head, and mental and physical abuse.

Rather than the sky falling, it's continually improving; most of the substances listed have already either been banned, or their use curtailed voluntarily. From TFA:

The American Chemistry Council, meanwhile, called the review a "rehash" of the authors' first review.

"This iteration is as highly flawed as the first, as once again the authors ignore the fundamental scientific principles of exposure and potency," said council spokesman Scott Jensen.

"What is most concerning is that the authors focus largely on chemicals and heavy metals that are well understood to be inappropriate for children's exposure, are highly regulated and/or are restricted or being phased out. They then extrapolate that similar conclusions should be applied to chemicals that are more widely used in consumer products without evidence to support their claims. Such assertions do nothing to advance true scientific understanding and only create confusion and alarm."

Comment Re:This Ask Slashdot must be from the /. Beta Team (Score 1) 876

Before I get a little offtopic I want to address the submitter's question: he's asking for COBOL or BASIC. If you can't figure those simple languages out, you'll never be a programmer.

That said, a lot of today's high level languages are poorly designed, with a lot of roadblocks that should be unnecessary. And programmers should know boolean logic, binary math, and how computers work down to the individual transistors.

As to Beta, the problems are many but they don't stem from bad programming. They stem from bad design and poor testing and debugging (but 99% bad design). Releasing alpha-quality code to beta was their biggest mistake.

Comment Re:DO NOTE (Score 1) 97

You seem to completely misunderstand copyright. You cannot copyright information or knowledge, all you can copyright is your communication of that information and knowledge. You can write a book about communication protocols, and I can read your book and write my own based on what I learned from yours, and there's nothing you can do about it. I have not infringed your copyright, I have not copied your work, I have created a new work and possibly, if I've learned from others as well or discovered something in my studies, I can use that for improving on your information. And your assertion that I can't use the information is brain-dead stupid -- you think that people who check a book about how to win a game out of the library, read it, and use that new knowledge to win are infringing copyright???

Without copyright, any rich bastard could sell as many copies of my book as he wanted, he has marketing bucks and I don't. I would get nothing for my work, the publisher would reap the rewards.

That said, copyright lengths are absurd. There is no way Jimi Hendrix will ever be talked into recording any more records.

As to patents, there should be a patent system but ours is screwed for many different reasons.

Trademarks? You think it should be OK for me to open a McDonald's restaraunt down to the golden arches?

Comment Re:What's the difference? (Score 1) 462

I would agree that it is a medical disorder of some type, but I'm pretty sure your "molested as a kid" is absolutely wrong. I know people who were molested as children, none are gay and all have one or another mental illness compounded by substance abuse. Anyone who fucks a child fucks a child for life. No, I'm not talking about an eighteen year old who has been dating a sixteen year old for three years, I'm talking about adults fucking children. I wish I'd never seen the adult results from the abuse. But homosexuality wasn't the result, although prostitution often was.

On the other hand, gays and lesbians I've known all had straight siblings. If your hypothesis was correct, many of their siblings would also be gay --- I mean really, you have 4 kids and only molest one?

It's most likely a combination of genetics and environment, like almost every other disease. I pity them and applaud those who thrive despite it. If you're a Christian, remember that God loves gays and he doesn't hate their sins any more than he hates yours or mine. You're no better, don't judge people.

We all have our cross to bear. Just be glad you weren't born homosexual, I'm sure it's a huge burden.

Comment Re:DO NOTE (Score 1) 97

Not me. If I come home from work and find someone I don't know sitting on my couch reading, they're going to jail. Period. Even if the door is unlocked it's breaking and entering and a violation of my rights. You don't just walk into someone's house and read their books, especially since those books are free at the library.

Hey, you, get offa my cloud!

Comment Re:He'll be old when he gets it. (Score 1) 114

My daughter has been using iPhones for years, she's 27. I see people of all ages with the silly things. I say silly, because it's stupid to carry around a six or seven hundred dollar fragile object everywhere you go when one for a hundred will do all the same things.

I call Apple's phone the iBling. It's a status symbol, and I detest status symbols. Kids...

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