Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

Comment Quick Plug For Federalism (Score 1) 1251

Absolutely, I agree with you. There does need to be such a separation. As a man of faith, myself, I feel it is necessary to separate my spiritual beliefs from my social responsibility as a voter. I wish more people did the same.

However, I think that if the people of Oklahoma (which is dead center in the oft-called "Bible belt") want to have the 10 commandments on the grounds of their state Capitol then Satanists in New York should leave the hell alone. If there was a large community of Satanists in Oklahoma (which I doubt), their complaint may be valid. On the other hand, if we were putting monuments of specific faiths on the Federal Capitol grounds, then I would side with the Satanists (which feels weird to say) and agree that if we have one, we should have them all - so it's probably best to have none.

My point is that the beauty of state government versus federal is that you can be more specific to the people living in the state itself. If a bunch of people in a community want to have their community centered around their faith and they all agree, then just leave them in peace*. New York Satanists are just trolling Oklahoma. Their "proposal" is nothing more than flamebait.

*Disclaimer: if the community of faith results in the malicious brainwashing and/or exploitation of the members, then this statement is negotiable.

Comment The Waters Are Muddy (Score 3, Insightful) 65

While I agree with you, I can't blame these mega-corporations. Lawmakers have a tendency to pass laws that would crush private industries unless they intervened. My guess is that most of this money isn't spent trying to push some agenda, they're simply trying to protect their business from meddlesome lawmakers.

We'll need a government that doesn't screw with the private industry before the private industry agrees to stop screwing with the government.

Comment Re:Not surprising from a religious point of view. (Score 2) 347

Accidentally posted my original comment as an anon coward, so I'm responding as the first person who posted this subject line. I hope to make an effort at protecting your faith in humanity and perhaps more specifically, in the ignorant Christians you indict. If you're just a troll, then I'm sorry I'm wasting my time, but I hope that's not the case.

I never said, nor would I ever say would refuse to take medication because of my faith. Ironically enough, I am currently applying to medical school, but I think this is a digression from your main point, so we'll move on.

I think you're talking about a good many Christians who say they refuse to give science a chance because it might possibly contradict their faith. I agree with you. That is a bigoted and fearful response that demonstrates these individuals aren't confident enough of their own faith because they fear educating themselves would cause them to lose it.

As you suggest, I don't think that faith and an appreciation of science are mutually exclusive. In fact, just as people who are frustrated with Christians because they feel that science is incompatible with faith (and I agree, I'm frustrated too), so I find fault with scientists who feel they are unable to explore faith because it is stupid and therefore incompatible with science. Neither of these extremes is true.

I admit that there are a good many Christians who are full of pride - perhaps I'm one of them. What I meant was that it does take humility to admit that I have a need to seek a spiritual solution for what I find in myself to be a spiritual problem. You asked for empiricism on this point and I simply confess that I'm unable to provide it for you, other than that I am an incomplete individual without my faith in God. I consider that a humble admission.

Just as you ask Christians to give acceptance to the idea that science is a real and honest pursuit, so would I ask you to accept that faith is an acceptable pursuit of others, regardless of whether you choose to partake in it.

Comment Actual Article Summary (Score 2) 36

"We made a tiny bar that vibrates when it's surrounded by bacteria! It stopped vibrating when the bacteria were given antibiotics and we think this means the bacteria were dead. We don't know why it vibrates and currently we have no way of telling the difference between different kinds of bacteria."

Cool technology, but keep your pants on. This has very little application for a very long time.

Submission + - Ask Slashdot: Can Lawmakers Disagree With Their Constituents?

TheSwift writes: A close friend of mine is involved in state legislature and I've interacted with him several times, hearing his viewpoints on different issues and topics. Although I found his perspectives very insightful, I have a hunch that his views on particular topics differ from the majority of his constituents. So, I wanted to bring this question to the Slashdot community for discussion: can a lawmaker disagree with the majority of their constituents if they feel they know better, or are they compelled to vote as they believe the majority of their constituents would vote?

Submission + - Fascinating physics - Trapped in an Underwater Air Bubble for Three Days (slate.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Simply amazing. From Slate: "Being buried alive is usually near the top of any worst-ways-to-die list. But how about being buried alive 100 feet below the ocean surface in a tiny pocket of air? For Harrison Okene, ... this nightmare scenario became a reality for nearly three grueling days. ... May 26 at about 4:30 a.m., when Okene got up to use the restroom. His ... tugboat ... swayed in the choppy Atlantic waters ... What caused the tugboat to capsize remains a mystery, ... Okene was thrown from the crew restroom as the ship turned over. Water streamed in and swept him through the vessel’s bowels until he found himself in the toilet of an officer’s cabin. ... For the next 60 hours, Okene—who was without food, water, or light—listened to the sounds of ocean creatures scavenging through the ship on his dead crewmates... When Maxim Umansky, a physicist at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California, read about Okene’s miraculous rescue, his interest was piqued. “For a physics question, it’s an interesting problem,” said Umansky. “Of course, I’m also glad the man survived and happy with the ending of his story.” Umansky began conducting his own calculations to quantify the factors responsible for Okene’s survival. He also posed a question to a physics Web forum: How large does a bubble have to be to sustain a person with breathable air? "
Cellphones

Cell Phones As a Dirty Bomb Detection Network 103

First time accepted submitter iinventstuff writes "The Idaho National Laboratory has built a dirty bomb detection network out of cell phones. Camera phones operate by detecting photons and storing them as a picture. The INL discovered that high energy photons from radiological sources distort the image in ways detectable through image processing. KSL TV reports that the INL's mobile app detects radiation sources and then reports positive 'hits' to a central server. Terrorists deploying a dirty bomb will inevitably pass by people carrying cell phones. By crowdsourcing cell phones, the INL has created a potentially very large, inexpensive, and randomly mobile radiation detection grid."

Submission + - Windows 8.1 (Blue) to bring back the Start button (pureinfotech.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Windows 8 "reimagined" backfires Microsoft — take it with a grain of salt, but new information coming from Mary Jo Foley, a very reliable Microsoft watcher from ZDNet, is reporting that the software giant isn't just bringing boot-to-desktop option, but it could also be considering bringing back the Start button in Windows 8.1 (Blue).

Submission + - 90% of Game Hacks and Cracks Contain Malware

An anonymous reader writes: Computer and online gaming is big business for companies creating the games, but a considerable drain on the finances of gamers, so it should not come as a surprise that many of the latter decide against buying games and add-ons, choosing instead to download cracked games, keygens, patches and more from torrent or file-sharing sites. But, according to AVG, that decision could cost them much more in the long run, as the company's recent research proved that over 90 percent of "hacks and cracks" found via metasearch services such as FilesTube and FileCrop contained malicious code or malware.

Comment Admission of Mistakes (Score 1) 1

I'm a pre-med. I regularly see physicians in the emergency room who over medicate and over test patients to protect themselves from litigation.

Consider researching about the benefits of an environment where physicians can discuss mistakes they've made without fear of litigation. Perhaps it could result in better medicine and better patient-physician trust.

See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iUbfRzxNy20 for more thoughts on this topic.

Comment Re:We live in a free country? (Score 1) 417

Someone mod parent up.

Slashdotters are quick to complain that our liberties that are becoming fewer and fewer, but we don't hesitate to push legislation when the activity in question bothers us.

I would attest that there are far more dangerous activities one could commit that are freedoms we wouldn't consider revoking. People are negligent and make poor choices, but removing freedoms that some abuse from the entire population is a knee jerk over correction that gives far too much power to authorities.

Education

Submission + - Ask Slashdot: Emergent complexity for a Physician 1

Dirac_my_friend writes: I'm studying as a Theoretical Physician and I'm very close to start working on the thesis. I'm fascinated by emergent complexity, such as: the Conway's game of life, bees organization, neural network, complexity economics . I'm asking you either where to read something interesting about or some cool topics you consider useful for a future job/interesting to work on. Any ideas?

Slashdot Top Deals

The solution of this problem is trivial and is left as an exercise for the reader.

Working...