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Comment Re:The ignorance abounds (Score 1) 608

Do you also think we should prohibit alcohol sales? Alcohol's negative effects on society are extremely plain to see. Society would be better off as a whole if people were allowed to use marijuana as an alternative to alcohol.

Besides, what authority does anyone have to tell another what they can and cannot do with their own bodies and minds? If someone wants to get high with friends in the privacy of their own home, what justification do you have to stop them? And yes, this same argument applies to all drugs. Think critically about it. The freedom and right to use drugs is intertwined in the freedom and right to manipulate your own mind and exert control over your mental processes.

And in what way are weed smokers inherently in need of help? Micheal Phelps and Carl Sagan were just pot smoking losers in your eyes? The 20-30% of college students who smoke marijuana on a regular basis are pitiful druggies who will never amount to anything without an intervention? As an openly pot smoking software engineer, I have met a great many people who are intelligent, successful, and reputable and happen to enjoy smoking weed.

It's not for everyone - I've seen people who get panic attacks from it and others who seriously can't think at all on it despite regular use - but many people can use marijuana responsibly and without problems. There is no reason they should be prevented from doing so. And as such, there should be a regulated, legal market for acquiring marijuana. Otherwise you are unjustifiably preventing people from an action they have every right to partake in, funneling billions of dollars to organized crime, fueling the distrust between a large portion of the population and the police, reducing respect for the rule of law, and putting distribution of the substance in the hands of people who don't follow health regulations or check IDs.

Comment Re:Field Sobriety Test (Score 1) 608

And what are your tolerance levels and experience with both substances?

As someone who rarely drinks, I notice significant (not huge, but significant) impairment of my coordination, response time, and thinking ability after just a single beer.

On the other hand, I smoke weed (actually, mostly hash oil - concentrated cannabinoids) on a daily basis and notice no impairment at all from a single hit of weed. After a whole bowl to myself (or a dab of oil) my reaction time can go down a little, and thinking can be slightly slower, but not as much as a single beer will do. It takes a lot of weed to significantly fuck with my coordination. In fact, the main driving related effect I get from weed is that it calms me down; I drive slower, less aggressively, and don't get as stressed by things like traffic and slow/bad drivers.

Comment Re:Impossible to Say (Score 1) 878

So any benefit you think you gain from caffeine is just you rationalizing your addiction? Does the fact that weed and LSD are not considered to be addicting drugs mean your willing to accept their may be some validity in user's anecdotes? Besides, most people who are claiming the drugs help are talking about the creative process, coming up with ideas and designs for code, not the actual coding itself. You can come up with a real creative design while tripping, look it over once your sober to find any flaws, and then implement it sober as well (or under the influence of caffeine if you prefer).

The arguments against the idea of drugs being helpful that I see used by those who have never done illegal drugs basically amounts to "I've always been told drugs are bad, so they can't be beneficial." I am comfortable enough with the understood process of "cognitive dissonance" that the opinions of people (in regard to this topic) who's only knowledge of drugs is what they were told by "authority figures" can be thrown out.

Comment Re:please (Score 1) 279

I understand all of your points, but I think you missed mine. Do you think the farmers that grow your food are more concerned with feeding your family, or earning money? Just because someone has their own selfish motives doesn't mean their actions can't be beneficial.

Regardless of motive, my point remains that those who enable the violation of unjust laws are one of the strongest forces in raising awareness and opposition to those laws.

Comment For thinking creatively and designing it can (Score 1) 878

Psychedelics and cannabis can help with the conceptual part of designing software, but they make it more difficult to write actual code and can make it more buggy. I find that a small amount of weed can help me focus for a couple of hours before it makes me groggy. Also, microdosing LSD - taking just enough to get the stimulating, creative, awareness-expanding, uplifting effects but not enough for the reality distortion and motor impairment - shows promising signs as a nootropic. I would recommend looking into LSD microdosing if you're really curious about how recreational drugs could be used beneficially for intellectual purposes. I've never used LSD explicitly for problem solving, but all kinds of unique ideas come to me spontaneously, and there have been many times while tripping that I've viewed the world in an objected-oriented way for example thinking about each person as a separate implementation of an abstract Person class along with implementing interfaces for each role they perform in society as a way of conceptualizing the way unique people can all fit into predefined roles in society. Most of the realizations on psychedelics are hard to describe to others, but that's mostly because of how complex and nuanced (and many times, personal) the realizations are. It would be like trying to explain how some 100,000 line system you wrote works to someone; You understand it conceptually in your head, but putting it into words so a lay person can understand the inner workings is all but impossible.

It's not that recreational drugs help the actual act of writing code, but they can be greatly beneficial to the conceptual design process.

Then there's stimulants like adderall and (obviously) caffeine. And the fact that smoking weed after work can be an effective means of preventing burn out.

In the end, I think it mostly varies from person to person. What drugs they're used to, how their mind naturally works, what kind of work they do, what kind of effects the want, etc.

Comment Re:You're asking the wrong question. (Score 1) 878

Caffeine and Adderall are mind-altering drugs with obvious benefits for productivity. Besides, you can use a drug like weed or LSD for creativity and designing, and then review and implement that design while sober. Also, there is unofficial research going on regarding using extremely small doses of LSD as a nootropic for it's creative, uplifting, and energizing effects, but at a dose lower than required for hallucinations and motor impairment.

Comment Re:please (Score 1) 279

If it weren't for people like Dotcom and the Pirate Bay guys, would there even be a movement for the EFF and EDRI to fight for? That's what I see as the problem with saying we should all wait for the law to be changed before engaging in activities we believe should be legal - If no one is performing the activity then who cares enough about legitimizing it to fight for it? Why spend all the effort to legalize an activity that no one seems too concerned with? Do you think prohibition would have ever ended if everyone would have stopped drinking alcohol until it was repealed?
Intel

Submission + - Intel's Game Changer: One Size Fits All Haswell (hothardware.com)

MojoKid writes: "Intel's next-generation CPU architecture, codenamed Haswell, puts heavy emphasis on reducing power consumption. Pushing Haswell down to a 10W TDP is an achievement, but hitting these targets requires collaboration. Haswell will offer finer-grained control over areas of logic that were previously either on or off, up to and including specific execution units. These optimizations are impressive, particularly the fact that idle CPU power is approaching tablet levels, but they're only part of the story. Operating system changes matter as well, and Intel has teamed up with Microsoft to ensure that Windows 8 takes advantage of current and future hardware. Haswell's 10W target will allow the chip to squeeze into many of the convertible laptop/tablet form factors on display at IDF, while Bay Trail, the 22nm, out-of-order successor to Clover Trail (Atom), arrives in 2013 as well. Not to mention the company's demonstration of the first integrated digital WiFi radio. Folks have been trading blows over whether Intel could compete with ARM's core power consumption. Meanwhile, Santa Clara has been busy designing many other aspects of the full system solution for low power consumption and saving a lot of wattage in the process."
Microsoft

Submission + - Kenya warned on ditching copyrighted software by Microsoft (standardmedia.co.ke) 1

An anonymous reader writes: Recently, the Kenyan government issued a warning that in would migrate over to Free and Open Source Software (FOSS). The move is expected to halve the IT cost for this third world country. Microsoft however chimed in with FUD comments about opensource. Here are some choicy bits:
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“We agree with the open standards but not the free and open source software strategy,” said Paul Roy Owino, technology advisor, Microsoft East and Southern Africa.

“The Government stands to lose to hackers, freedom to third party modification coming with Free and Open Source Software it plans to adopt increases chances of Internet attacks,” he said “I do not think the Government has competent expertise to handle the challenges that comes with the free and Open Source Software,” he said.
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Comment Re:Soul Crushing? (Score 1) 276

What if you'd rather go for a hike after work, not get stuck in traffic, don't like having to avoid bums literally asking for beer money, don't want to worry about getting violently robbed at night, and would like to sleep with the window open without hearing traffic? Besides, if I want quality service at a business, I know I need to go to the suburbs. But maybe it's just because Milwaukee is a shit-hole.

Comment Burnout (Score 1) 729

Why do Americans constantly feel the need to push themselves to burnout? How would you like if your boss assigned you hours of work that had to be completed on your free time after already working 8 hours a day? Do people really believe that school is less effort and stress than work? Must be those rose-colored glasses.

Besides, I think a more effective change to the school year would be to take the three months of summer break, and distribute them through out the year, one month at a time. So kids would go to school for a couple months, then get a month break after every quarter, trimester, what-have-you. Then there is the crazy long 3 month break that TFA references where kids forget everything. And kids get to have more significant breaks more often so they can unwind and relax a bit more between quarters and start the next one refreshed and ready to go.

Comment Re:Mods (Score 1) 626

How does recreational use imply abuse? I abused adderall my last year of college and first year of full-time work for entirely non-recreational purposes and it pretty much ruined 2 years of my life. My recreational usage of psychedelics on the other hand has been entirely positive. I don't think that recreational drug use is inherently either good or bad. Drugs are tools. And like all tools, it's all depends what you do with them.

And why do people think that drug use is the result of some problem in people's lives or a vain attempt to be "cool"? Maybe people do drugs for the same reason they do anything else with their free time: simply because it's enjoyable.

"Drugs" are a hard thing to generalize. Remember, everything from caffeine and weed up to alcohol and heroin are labeled "drugs". Some are much more inherently dangerous than others, but to generalize "drugs are bad" is as naive as generalizing "food is bad" after walking through the candy aisle. And as far weed is concerned, it's far more benign than America's socially acceptable intoxicant, alcohol.

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