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Comment Re:Nice (Score 3, Informative) 169

Boxing has long been associated with a form of CTE called 'Dementia Pugilistica' (literally Boxer's Dementia), which manifests as Parkinsonism (and Dementia).

The etiology of 'Normal' Parkinsons and Dementia Pugilistica are almost certainly different, but at many stages they look similar enough that it's probably fair to say that boxing does essentially cause Parkinsons.

Comment Re:cool. (Score 1) 176

The Brazil rat didn't "know" to communicate signals. The US rat didn't "read" the mind of the Brazil rat.

Here's how it works.

There is a recording electrode in Brazil Rat's head. It passively records the activity from a region of the brain involved in the task. There is a stimulating electrode in US Rat's head. It passively replays the activity that was recorded from Brazil Rat's head.

The control condition in this case is what happens to the US Rat's choice behavior when they shut off the stimulating electrode.

Make more sense now?

Comment Re:Case dismissed? (Score 2) 369

Why does this insanity continued to be repeated on Slashdot?

Resolutions were passed authorizing the use of force. Congress has authorized vast sums of money to wage war. Politicians in both parties have acknowledged that we are at war. Personally, I'm not particularly happy that we went to war, but it's pretty clear that we did so.

Comment Re:How is this a problem? (Score 5, Insightful) 285

The problem is not really preventing pilots from carrying guns on planes. It's preventing people who look like pilots from being given special security breaks and dealing with the costs associated with preventing that while reaping only minimal gains from not scanning pilots.

This essay: by Schneier does a fantastic job at explaining the problem. The basic synopsis is:
1) Security is a system, and for all the easy changes you make ("Let's not screen pilots, that makes no sense!"), you actually need to build tons of other systems (Databases to validate pilot IDs, training for security personnel to access those databases, hard to forge ID cards to identify pilots, etc).
2) Because of those things you didn't think of in (1), and because security is a zero-sum game, all the dollars you spend building security systems to deal with pilots and all the minutes that you save not screening them could have been spent doing more impactful things that make everyone safer and reduce time at the security checkpoint for less money.

Basically, with limited resources and the hidden costs of not scanning pilots, is it worth it to not scan pilots? Probably not.

Comment She's STILL SAYING IT! (Score 5, Informative) 541

Famously, Jenny McCarthy went on Oprah and told parents not to vaccinate their kids. Many doctors and parents LISTENED! If you read the articles, you'll see that as a result children died of easily preventable childhood diseases because parents were too scared to get the proper vaccinations.

She's STILL DOING IT! She still says the same thing. Article in Huffington Post, dated TWO DAYS AGO:

I know children regress after vaccination because it happened to my own son. Why aren't there any tests out there on the safety of how vaccines are administered in the real world, six at a time? Why have only 2 of the 36 shots our kids receive been looked at for their relationship to autism? Why hasn't anyone ever studied completely non-vaccinated children to understand their autism rate?

These missing safety studies are causing many parents to approach vaccines with moderation. Why do other first world countries give children so many fewer vaccines than we do? What if a parent used the vaccine schedule of Denmark, Norway, Japan or Finland -- countries that give one-third the shots we do (12 shots vs. 36 in the U.S.)? Vaccines save lives, but might be harming some children -- is moderation such a terrible idea?

This debate won't end because of one dubious reporter's allegations. I have never met stronger women than the moms of children with autism. Last week, this hoopla made us a little stronger, and even more determined to fight for the truth about what's happening to our kids.


Comment The Critical Section (Score 4, Interesting) 222

When The New York Times ran an entirely appropriate and well reported profile of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange — discussing his personality and his contentious leadership style — Greenwald railed against the newspaper, terming the reporters “Nixonian henchmen.”

Similarly, when Assange complained that journalists were violating his privacy by reporting the details of rape and molestation allegations against him in Sweden, Greenwald agreed, writing: “Simultaneously advocating government transparency and individual privacy isn’t hypocritical or inconsistent; it’s a key for basic liberty.”

With Manning, Greenwald adopts the polar opposite opinions. “Journalists should be about disclosing facts, not protecting anyone.” This dissonance in his views has only grown in the wake of reports that Manning might be offered a plea deal in exchange for testimony against Assange.

I don't know whether or not Wired is guilty or innocent here. But it seems they've got a fair point about Greenwald, and it seems fair to give them the benefit of the doubt.

Comment Re:There's no need to fear Joe Lieberman (Score 1) 528

If I'm supporting the Dark Ages, you're supporting a world where apparently the US doesn't trade with anyone, because we have stopped caring about what happens outside of our own borders.


We're talking about things like:
* Famine
* Military Aid to Allies
* Sending drugs to Africa to fight AIDS
* Pressuring Countries to Adopt Climate Change Legislation
* Enacting Fair Labor Laws in other Countries


People who are upset at US influence because of fucking copyright protection have no idea and who want to revert to absurdist protectionism because they are upset at the RIAA are so far off the mark here it's not even funny.

We're talking about the ability of the US Government to communicate sensibly with its allies and negotiate reasonably with its enemies. Not the fucking RIAA, and not copyright law.

Comment Re:There's no need to fear Joe Lieberman (Score 4, Insightful) 528

This is the most ridiculous sentiment to come out of this entire thing.

Presumably, you want your government (whatever government that might be) to have strong diplomacy and the ability to influence its region of the world. Diplomacy allows countries to resolve conflicts and solve problems without throwing bombs at each other. And, you want other countries, your allies, to be able to approach your country with issues about their own security from threatening neighbors, without necessarily throwing gasoline on the flames.

Both of those things [i]require secrecy[/i]. Both of those things [i]require confidential communication[/i].

It may be true that the US Government (and ALL governments) do things that overstep the bounds of power. But all diplomacy and negotiations require some measure of confidence, and all alliances require the ability to have confidential communication.

This leak wasn't about exposing some massive corruption about the US putting drugs in the water supply. It was about releasing a bunch of documents, mostly about either relatively mundane topics or communications between countries or embassies.

Strong diplomacy is worth the secrecy that comes with confidential communication. Jeopardizing that to "fight the man" is certainly criminal and probably insane.

Comment Thorndike would have argued differently! (Score 1) 716

Oddly enough, despite your characterization of dogs and cats, it turns out that the conditioning you are talking about in your dog example (Operant Conditioning) was first studied by Thorndike... in cats!

Really, it just has more to do with the way pet owners tend to treat their animals than "conditioning" vs. "attitude".

Comment And allow them to collect demographic data... (Score 5, Insightful) 419

And, presumably, if there are ad-blocking extensions to Chrome, they will send their information back to Google, and give Google information about precisely which ads are being blocked.

So, when company X comes to Google and says, "Your prices are far too high, most of our ads aren't making impressions anyhow, they're being blocked by clever browser extensions!", Google can come back and say, "Well, we've actually got some data on that, and..."

Comment Re:I'd expect the decision to hinge on whether ... (Score 4, Interesting) 92

So, I just read an article off your website, and while it made good and obvious sense that the RIAA wouldn't want to be publicly embarrassed, I had never put together just how much control over the information they really have, and how crucial this control of information is to the legal campaign they're waging.

I mean, it's as if they're waging a thousand-front war and winning on the basis of a gimmicky weapon, and on each of the fronts, their enemies are completely unable to communicate with one another and unsure what strategies to pursue.

Who else is getting sued? Who else is even fighting the suit? Who else is settling? How much did they settle for? The only people who know the full details are the ones bringing the lawsuits. As best I can tell, from your writeup, it seems that even the COURTS don't know what's been done previously, as the RIAA brings motion after motion filled with reasons to join a number of cases that have already been denied several times.

What a brilliant and strange strategy. I'm not a lawyer, but I can't even think of another possible life example for something like this, never mind a legal one. Has anything like this ever been done before?

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