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Comment Re:ok, no worries then (Score 1) 347

You can add to that: objects which cost $22 to print.

The choice is:
(A) Keep printer materials on hand and use $22 worth of material to self-print the object now, or
(B) Waste $10 of my my time and $1 of gas heading to home depot to pay $9.99 for it.

It doesn't matter if it costs more to print something than it costs in a store. They're a lot of value in not having to run out to buy something.


Comment Re:Who? What? Huh? (Score 2) 62

It may be "getting reprinted all over the fuck", but I had blissfully managed to avoid seeing it.... until getting stabbed in the eye with it on Slashdot. Thanx.

I've been awake 5 minutes and already I've had a 100% Recommended Daily Allowance of pain, misery, cynicism, stupidity, scientific illiteracy, and media whoring.
Now I can't check cable news for today's update on the budget/Obamacare battle.


Comment The Lament of Smaller and Simpler Systems (Score 1) 335

The thing is, this new operating system will evolve like just about every other "we'll make it smaller and simpler" systems. If they are the next big thing, then sooner or later they'll go down the path of adding everything into their system that they ripped the other guys for having, then act like they invented it.

Comment Re:No, the little people don't have all the money (Score 1) 387

I actually read those other articles. There's no "Reliable source problem here".

The "healing" story looks to be perfectly valid research on a previously undiscovered mechanism that takes place in sterile fetal tissue. The tissue around the wound contracts, effectively contracting the size of the wound. Then other healing mechanisms kick in to fully close the wound. This isn't going to provide scar-free plastic surgery, at least not in the foreseeable future.

The Cosmology story, I'll start out by saying that when a headline says scientist says "x MAY y", I take that as a blatant tag that we're talking about a speculative new idea. I don't see a problem with a story on speculative science ideas when reported as speculative. It looks like some scientists wrote up an interesting new idea to explain the apparent acceleration of the expansion of the universe, and which appears to fit well with certain other observations. However as the article notes, there's a serious problem/hole in the theory. It was an interesting read, if you're into that sort of thing, but the hole in the theory is almost certainly going to turn out to be fatal.

Anyway, their claim is that, based on Zipf's law, there must be some "long tail" of unknown small financial institutions which have vast but uncounted assets. No way.

"No way" is right. That's not what it says at all.
They said that the collection of all companies follows Zipf's law, and they get the "shadow banking value" from the abnormally deflated HEAD of the curve, NOT the long tail.

They're not saying there's some "unknown small financial institutions which have vast but uncounted assets", they're saying the biggest corporations are underreporting. And it's a known fact that they are underreporting. They merely came up with a way to calculate the size of the known underreporting.

"It is in the nature of markets to move money from the many to the few."

That point is mentioned in the story, and it it is in fact a crucial part of how they obtained their result. The biggest corporations, the ones most closely engaged in working the money market itself, are vastly underreporting just how much they have worked the market to move ~100 Trillion dollars from the many to the few.

Examining the graph it looks like this figure is attributable, almost entirely, to the 16 largest corporations in the world. And if they are right about the size of these unreported assets, the underreported value is greater than the entire global GDP.

And another point jumps to my mind. Large corporations have been gaming the system to avoid taxes. Capturing even just ONE PERCENT of this figure would completely solve the entire US budget deficit. I realize that these are not exclusively US companies, but certainly much of this value is U.S. based. Capturing about 2.5% of this figure, spread across the relevant countries, would pretty much solve everyone's deficits.


Comment Re:Alternative ways to deal with bullying (Score 1) 706

To answer your curiosity of whay I encourage people looking at this approach, I'd be curious what your reactions to these three examples of the difference between two approaches to handling negative comments:
"Victim Proof School for Kids (part 2)"
"Victim Proof Your School for Teachers"
"Golden Rule in the Workplace"

That said, nothing works everywhere. Still, Izzy Kalman says it is rare that physical violence among humans (at least related to schoolyard bullying) is not preceded by some kind of verbal escalation beforehand. If you can prevent the escalation, you probably can prevent the violence.

Anyway, it can be fun to try what Izzy demonstrates at home, He goes into more details on his CD and book, but basically, you get a friend, spouse, child whoever, and say you are going to play a game. The game is they are going to insult you and you are going to make them stop. If they stop, you win, If you give up, they win. The first time, try to disagree with them like he shows, getting upset, and so on. The second time, say it is OK if they think that, and so on, also like he illustrates. See which one they win and which one you win.

Note that as Izzy explains, you need to do these techniques 100% of the time, and you will still experience some teasing, showing, and so on. If you do them 95% of the time and get upset the other 5%, the cycle will continue because the bullying is being randomly reinforced (see operant conditioning).

Anyway, different things work in different environments. Sounds like you grew up in some tough situations. I could believe that what might work in most typical schools with typical bullying won't work in some with a certain kind of entrenched macho culture (without a lot of other changes).

Another relate video:
"Victim-proof your School demo"

Maybe these techniques would not have worked for you. As Izzy says, when serious physical injuries are involved, you may need to do something else. But they may still work for most bully-victim relationships. One pilot study of that, but it still needs more validating research:

Comment Re:Alternative ways to deal with bullying (Score 1) 706

See my other comment here:

It includes one testimonial about groups:
""A child was sent to me who had been teased by a whole group of children as a result of an incident at recess. I took him through the steps that I learned from Bullies to Buddies and within 15 minutes this child was able to go back to class and continue learning. The teacher was amazed at the transformation. I was able to teach the whole class the technique, which resulted in more time on task and more learning. The students got along better and the learning environment became more pleasant and enjoyable for everyone. Izzy is a master of making this learning fun and easy to teach.â -- Malda Burns, Rockdale Elementary School Counselor, Rockdale, Texas"

I don't know how long ago you deal with a bully that way, but these days you might be arrested and jailed for assault for intentionally giving someone a concussion in school. Times have changed. Also, maybe nobody messed with you, but did you lose out on other relationships that you will never know about based on people's perceptions of you? (Maybe not in many schools, but consider what the implications would be in the workplace...)

Also, as Izzy Kalman points out, fighting back can work, but only when you are absolutely sure you can defeat the bully. Also, what if that bully had a gun or knife, or a friend who did? Once you take a swing in response to bullying (whether verbal or physical), it could be seen as "self-defense" by the bully to seriously hurt you. These things are tough calls sometimes.

Yes, you stopped the bullying that time. But words leading to endless rounds of violence also are how gang wars and endless vendettas can get started. Other aspects:
"This type of "superior force" advice shows a lack of appreciation for the complexities of the bully-victim dynamics of today's world, where bullying often takes place in new arenas, such as on the Internet. Sure, if a victim fights back and flattens his bully, the bully tends to back off. But what if the bullies are hiding behind computer screens? What if the target is physically incapable of taking down the bully, which is more often the case?
    The truth is that there are many bullying situations in which the victim cannot simply beat up the bully and end the problem. The very nature of bullying renders victims fearful, frozen and incapable of defending themselves. According to bullying researcher Dan Olweus, bullying is characterized by three factors: 1) It is repetitive (not a one-time event in the hall, but a regular ongoing problem). 2) It is unwanted (not two-way teasing where both parties are having fun, but instead a situation where someone is on the receiving end of taunts and aggression). 3) It takes place in the context of a power imbalance (a bigger kid against a smaller kid, or multiple kids against a single kid, or a kid with more social capital against a kid with less social capital).
    When multiple kids are targeting one child, the situation can feel completely overwhelming. ..."

Nothing works for every situation. For example, Izzy Kalman says his approach requires the "bully" to be reasonable emotionally stable -- which is almost always the case, but not 100% of the time.

BTW, Izzy Kalman's approach does not work by reporting bullying. In fact, he generally discourages reporting as just something that will escalate the problem (except if the bully is extremely unstable or causing significant physical harm).

Here is the core of his approach:
Johnny is visiting a new town. In front of a big, magnificent old house, he sees another boy, surrounded by hundreds of pigeons, throwing bread crumbs on the sidewalk.

Wanting to start up a conversation, he asks the boy, "What's your name?"

"Billy," says the boy.

"And what are you doing?" Johnny asks Billy.

"I'm making the pigeons go away," Billy answers.

"What do you mean, you're making them go away?" the astounded Johnny asks.

"Yes. I'm making them go away. Every day, day after day, for many generations, these birds have been coming to our house at the same time every morning. They are a terrible nuisance. The noise they make is unbearable and it's almost impossible to walk on the sidewalk. And the slippery, yucky mess they leave all over the place is the worst thing of all."

"So why are you throwing them bread," the impatient Johnny asks.

"My ancestors tried everything, and discovered that the only thing that makes them go away is bread crumbs. As soon as the last crumb is finished, they suddenly can't stand being here. Then they all fly away and we don't see them again for a whole day!"

I hope this story made you laugh, or at least chuckle. That Billy sure was stupid. He thought he was chasing the birds away, but he was really making them come. "So, what," you may be wondering, "does this story have to do with teasing victims?" Lots! Just keep on reading and you'll soon understand.

. . .

So why do the kids keep bothering you? They know very well that you don't like it, and that the teachers and parents don't like it, so why do they keep on doing it?!! Why don't they just leave you alone and let everyone be happy?

Get ready for this! The real reason you are being teased is because you are getting upset!

. . .

The anger that you feel when you are teased is like the bread crumbs that Billy feeds to the pigeons. You are throwing your bullies gifts of anger, and you think your anger is going to make them leave you alone. But your anger is exactly what the bullies are looking for! That's why they keep coming back to you! You make them so happy when you get angry!

Yes, believe it or not, you have been rewarding the bullies for making fun of you! Think of it this way: If your parents are going to pay you to watch television, aren't you going to watch a lot of television? Of course you would! And bullies are just the same. You are giving them so much fun in return for tormenting you. Of course they are going to do it as much as possible!

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