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Comment Re:US education policy... (Score 1) 227


You know that Piaget has been largely discredited, right?

At some point we hopefully get to the point where we realize this entire field is discredited and stop trying to use it to set policy. Keep studying it all you want, much like economics, it has the feel of science without any of the icky details of repeatability and determinism.

Until you have something that absolutely, definitely works, let's just teach kids with teachers who are masters of their subject. Those kids who aren't learning fast enough probably need MORE, not LESS, teaching, so teach them more, even if it costs more.

Comment entire school day... (Score 3, Interesting) 227

An entire school day here in Texas means from about 8-3, minus 40 minutes for lunch, 20 minutes for recess, and 15 minutes for morning announcements. Seems pretty sparse and there's plenty of time to go play somewhere before dinner and bed-time (which some shaman are insisting should be 730p). Since my kids go to school very near where this yahoo practices his quackery, I can honestly say they goof off at school in epic proportions. I can say for a fact that they didn't cover such complex topics as "the alphabet" or "adding numbers" in kindergarten. Whatever they were doing, wasn't strongly academic.

All I see down here is more concentrated efforts to defund public schooling, pushing more interested parents into debt for private schools that still focus on academics. Public schools have always worked reasonably well, but it's clear that the more we defund and defocus them over the decades, the lower the quality of the graduates produced. In Austin they're talking about doing away with homework, and this fool is trying to provide the support needed. This is great way to cut pay to teachers who don't have to grade it, but whether we liked it or not as kids, there is is a time when you need to memorize certain things, and homework is the weapon of choice. Class time should be spent on questions and explanations, homework is the ideal time for reading new material and memorizing what things absolutely need to be memorized.

The entire topic of "child initiated" blah blah "social development" is saying happy words that people like to hear but has absolutely zero substance. If I get home another paper that my son "collaborated" on with his peers that contains mistakes that I know he is far beyond but he tells me "well if I tell her she's wrong she cries and we all get demerits", I will scream. Sure it's an excellent opportunity to teach leadership, but on the spot it isn't happening because teacher is busy with the remedial kids who still can't do their ABCs, but we can't have remedial/normal/advanced classes because it marginalizes someone (read: that budget was cut). At home it's out of context and contrived, particularly on a child who is not destined for leadership by its current definition (i.e. Zaphod Beeblebrox's school of CEOing). Whatever fantasy land this asshat lives in, he should retreat to, he couldn't handle the world he's shaping.

Let's keep school focused on academics, but when we get to the teenage years not be afraid to spend some money on kids who have no track record of academics, and help them with trade skills in a useful, non-profit, way. For now, if lack of play time is hurting children, it's probably all the after-school sports/band/dance/cheerleading/gymnastics/music/etc. stuff parents sign their kids in to as extended daycare. A friend of my son's has an after-school schedule that is full of more junk than my work calendar. Surely by the time they're done with all that they are exhausted and too tired for homework or required reading anyway.

Comment Re:You mean new apps right? (Score 2) 151

Because quite a lot of those people supposedly not downloading apps in a month, are downloading updates...

In other words we have the apps we like... which is kind of why this article makes me roll my eyes. The apps I have I cannot live without, but 99% of the app store is shit I won't download on a bet.

Comment Re:Thelema (Score 1) 539

Or the correlation between religion and income is a lot like that between pirates and global warming. In my line of work I'm usually the one white guy in a sea of asians, most of whom are the Hindu variety. My field pays well above average, and the people I work with were deliberately prodded into this field by decidedly secular sources.

Comment Re:Wouldn't that be an illegal agreement? (Score 1) 35

You would be wrong in a general sense. In California it is almost completely illegal. In other states, ymmv. It depends on whether they can give adequate pretext, I think a lot boils down to case law in various locales, IANAL. Texas isn't quite the wild unregulated west I thought it was, but it's also pretty much legal here.

There's also shades of illegality. A thing can be illegal in that it nullifies contracts, but end up being widely done in practice because the penalties are moot.

If there's ever been proof that the government has sold out the middle class, it's usually found in employment laws. People get too expensive, something is done to make them cheap.

Comment Re:As an EE and amateur aircraft manufacturer (Score 1) 202

I wonder how EEs many lost their jobs in this?

As an EE I would also try to point my finger at some firmware guys, at some semiconductor guys and some chemical engineers. There's a lot involved in these sorts of batteries in consumer devices, plenty of blame to share.

Comment Re:Next the gov't decides YOU have too much money. (Score 2) 579

Classic americanism

The part where we enforce the laws selectively, to avoid placing blame on the government which enabled it? Ireland is another issue entirely, but our own government did absolutely shit about the loopholes Apple and a whole heap of other companies are using to legally avoid paying taxes.

I hope what's not classic americanism is finding the rich guy and shaking him down for money by unequally and unfairly creating a tax just for him to pay, in effigy. That doesn't sound very american at all, that sounds like old-school european monarchs. Or possibly France.

We're all just temporarily embarrassed millionaires.

So you're arguing that we should fix the tax laws to ensure that the less embarassed millionaires pay their taxes, right? I agree.

Comment Re:Taxes = theft (Score 4, Insightful) 579

I don't use those services and I still have to pay taxes. The IRS is illegal under the US constitution.

You use the military, whether you want it or not. In the US that represents somewhere around 30-50% of your federal tax burden. You also use the police, whether you want to or not, that represents a good hunk of your local tax burden. You probably use the roads. You rely on the stability the government gives you. Even if you have no kids or you home school, or you private school, the education cost is keeping other people's kids from showing up at your house and robbing you blind.

Basically unless you live on an island in the middle of the pacific, you are relying on taxes whether you agreed to it or not. Feel free to blast yourself to the moon or somewhere else, but your agreement in this is not required, nor will you find an abundance of sympathy amongst your peers.

Comment Re:TVS Diode. (Score 1) 308

I don't know that this would play nicely with the high speed serial i/o. There ARE clamps in most of the chips, but they are designed mostly for static discharge and will break under sustained load.

But as others have pointed out this is an expensive solution to a problem that a rock solves for free.

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