Slashdot is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 internet speed test! No Flash necessary and runs on all devices. ×

Comment Re:Suprise (Score 1) 858

TV show ratings now = Misogyny

No, TV show ratings show evidence that misogyny exists. Maybe. (Correlation is not causation, etc) Claiming that they are equivalent, though, it not what's being asserted, and is generally a false representation of the argument being presented.

I think the most relevant graphic in the article was the one about how often men and women give 1 ratings to shows, relative to the percentage of men vs women rating the show overall.

Women also skew upwards in giving 1s to highly male-dominated shows. If at least 20% of the ratings are given by women, the percentage of 1s is pretty constant, at a little over 2%, but below 20% women, the percentage of 1s increases dramatically, to about 8% at the far edge.

Men, on the other hand, have a different trend line. Up to around 30%, maybe 40%, of women rating a show, men's 1s are perhaps a bit under 3% of all ratings. However over 40% (so 60% or fewer men, vs 20% or fewer women for the same effect on the other side) this increases dramatically, reaching perhaps 12% of all ratings being 1s for the shows with the highest female percentage (capping at 80%). There's definitely a difference in both perception and tolerance for shows that are outside your primary demographic.

Now, if you look at the rate that each one increases, women's percentage of 1s grows faster than men's (0.3 vs 0.225), but men's starts much sooner (40% rather than 80%). Possibly an indication that men are more likely to severely diss shows that are only mildly outside their comfort zone, while women will try to remain tolerant until things reach extreme levels, and then they start going negative far more quickly.

On the Sex and the City example, it was interesting to note that the average rating, when broken down by age group, was almost exactly the same across all ages (5.7 - 5.8 for men, 7.5 - 8.1 for women, with the 7.5 being a slight outlier of a relatively low sample size group of 45+ women [1100 vs 10k+ in other groups], the rest being 7.8 - 8.1).

The fact that the average doesn't vary by age actually seems like a counter-point to the misogyny as a source effect. One would expect that general behaviors have changed over time, and certainly over ~3 generations. Thus one might look for explanations outside of mere sexual attitudes, and more into behavioral aspects that have not varied over time. However the fact that men end up giving the same average ratings over such a large age range implies it's not just teenage brats going on a 1-rating spree, nor the influence of an older (presumably more misogynistic) age bracket influencing the final totals. It's something more pervasive and consistent.

Anyway, there's most definitely evidence of some sort of behavior difference between men and women in the data, though a lot more research is needed before I'd agree to any specific 'cause' being defined.

Comment Re:Okay, let's calculate this.... (Score 1) 127

... so that works out to a grand total of as many as 39 hours of commercial watching in an entire year. That's kinda falling pretty short of their estimate of 6 days. That's not even 2.

You're watching 0.86 hours per day, on average (6 1-hour shows over 7 days) rather than the population average of 1.67. Basically, half the amount of TV watching per week.

Then you're only watching 26 weeks per year, so again, half of the population average.

Thus, overall you're watching about 1/4 as much as the average person. 6.6 days / 4 = 1.65 * 24 = 39.6 hours. Tada! The magic of math.

Comment Re:I hope they keep the Picasa desktop app around. (Score 3, Interesting) 167

Picasa hasn't been updated in yeaaaars. I have a download of 3.9 from March 2012. There were a bunch of minor issues in it that they never addressed, and a bunch of feature requests that never got added.

It's always sat on that cusp of "almost useful", for me. It's one of the better image managers out there, but all that means is that most image managers are crap, and Picasa manages to *almost* be 'good' (but fails in enough ways that I still eventually abandon it).

Comment Re:How can there be? (Score 1) 622

Can you please provide sources for their "utterly fucking massive profits"? I haven't been able to find anything to that effect.

In one of AT&T's SEC filings, it showed that the actual costs to them for providing internet services was on the order of 4% of what they charged the customers. So, 96% of revenue was profit.

Comment Re:hence the old joke... (Score 2) 220

The first three numbers on the bottom of the slide are 9, 1, and 1. The second one is really 1.1 (as you can guess from the progression up to another 9, and then 2), and if you line that one up you end up with 5.5, because the real "1" is down around 1.81 (so 3*1.81=5.43). You need to line the first 1 up with the 2. Then everything lines up perfectly.

I had basically the same confusion the first time I tried. After figuring out which was correct, it was neat to see any multiple (eg: 1.5, 2, 3, etc) all giving perfect answers. No clue how to use the rest of it, though.

Comment Advertisers proved that advertising works (Score 1) 398

Advertising works, even on those who say advertising doesn't work on them. Why? Because advertising isn't a nice tiny little black box. It doesn't only apply to one tiny aspect of what you view. It applies to *everything*.

What does this mean? Do you remember phrased related to "selling yourself"? How to sell yourself for a job interview, or when meeting new people, networking at a conference, etc? Basically, that's an advertisement interaction. You advertise something (yourself), and others react to what is presented.

The point is, that's not a TV commercial, a radio spiel, or a banner ad. Its an abstraction. And everyone here should recognize what you can do with an abstraction.

Every "thing" is an extension of a base "thing". C#'s System.Object; Java's java.lang.Object; etc. Every single thing that can be described as "creating an impression on a person" is a similar type of base object. Or perhaps having an appropriate interface would be a better analogy.

So what has those properties? Well, pretty much everything. Every TV show is advertising all its actors. Every road is advertising the city council. Every well-manicured or overgrown lawn is advertising for the family living in a house. People focus on the content of the advertising object (the actual jpg with "Amazon" on it, or the flash video from IBM, or whatever), and somewhat miss that it also applies to the object itself, as well as the container for that object, and the means of accessing and delivering that object, and on, and on. Each of those are also objects that themselves have that same 'advertising' interface.

And on the web, every ad is advertising for the advertisers. The /contents/ of the ad is advertising for the company that wants you to know about it and its products, but the ad itself is advertising for the ad company that created the ad; its delivery is advertising for the ad delivery network; and its presentation is advertising for the site that hosts it.

People say they hate annoying ads, but we also know that more annoying ads make people more aware of the companies they're advertising for. And there's a part of you that realizes that there are three or four separate entities involved in the presentation of that ad. For an annoying TV commercial, is your anger going to be at the product/company being advertised? The people who created that travesty? The people at the TV station who screwed with the volume settings so that the commercial was a lot louder than the show you were just watching? The people who are spamming this ad through all the late-night commercial slots so you see it all over the place?

There's plenty of anger to go around, and, honestly, there's probably not a strong emotional connection to the product itself; just the correlation between the strong emotion and awareness of that product happening at the same time. So you hate the commercial, but are more aware of and likely to remember the product itself, without necessarily hating the product that much more. Now if you bought said product and found out it was complete crap, the emotional association is solely with the product itself, and almost certainly will negatively impact your likelihood to buy it again.

So what have the advertisers done? They've well and truly advertised themselves into being one of the most hated industries around. It's more subtle and distributed than something like Verizon customer service, but because it's so constant and pervasive, it's become completely embedded in the public consciousness.

So, people hate ads. Not necessarily the ad -content- — I don't hate Ocean Spray, or Amazon, or whatever — but the -ads-. The delivery networks; the presentation; the slowing down of page loads; the tracking and surveillance; the way they affect the page design; the malware exploits; the annoyances and noises and disruptions.

So the advertisers have convinced us that what we truly, truly want is to be free of them. Not the advertising itself — if I see a Coke machine on the street, I might very well buy a Coke, and I don't find that problematic — but the product and service that the advertisers are providing. The intrusiveness, the annoyance, the risks, and everything else.

People are conflating the idea that adblocking is all about the ads with the reality that it's all about the advertisers. If someone is ok with relevant, non-intrusive ads, what are they really saying?

* The idea of 'relevant' ads also has its own little rant. There are plenty of ways to have strongly relevant advertising without any tracking whatsoever. There are also plenty of times when non-relevant advertising can be quite useful as well.

Comment Re:Isn't this a no brainer? (Score 3, Interesting) 474

Car analogy time!

So, suppose you're driving your car. Every once in a while, a great big billboard pops up in between you and your passenger, interrupting your conversation. Other times, the radio turns on by itself, blaring out annoying music while someone was trying to give you directions on where to turn.

Meanwhile, each time this happens, it uses up a bit of gas. By the end of the month you realize you've spent twice as much on gas as you thought you should have, given how much you drove. And the car just doesn't go as fast as it used to when you first got it. You're lucky to hit 45 miles per hour on the freeway.

Plus, periodically, something strange will happen with your own or one of your neighbors' cars, where the car will just drive off by itself in the middle of the night, doing who-knows-what. And you have to hope your car is back and somewhat usable in the morning when you need to get to work. And hope that you don't find extra charges on your credit card for stuff you never bought.

But then you find out that all you have to do to stop all that is to stop handing over your car key to every random person in the street who asks for it. The people that you meet are a bit upset that they can't borrow your car's billboard, and gas, and stereo, and other such things, but in the end you find that you can drive in peace and quiet, with good gas mileage, get where you're going pretty quickly, and are less likely to get into an accident. But those people say that you're stealing from them. And somehow manage that without any sense of irony. (The analogy starts getting rather difficult to extend at this point; there's a limit to my car-analogy-fu.)

Comment Re:Don't RTFA (Score 4, Interesting) 318

so mozilla is ok with adblock/ghostery etc. IMHO anyway

Sort of. Your summary misses a key point at the start of item #3:

Blocking should maintain a level playing field and should block under the same principles regardless of source of the content.

"Regardless of source" is a weasely way of implying, "no public blocklists that block based on the source domains and such". A "level playing field" that isn't biased by source would be allowing you to block 320x200 video (because perhaps those are typically ads), but not "everything from doubleclick.net".

Extensions like AdBlock and Ghostery explicitly block based on the source of the content, and that violates principal #3.

Principle #1 might also vaguely be problematic, depending on interpretation. However, "blocking advertising" can be categorized under "a specific user need", even though it's specifically excluded in the example list (implying that users don't 'need' to block advertising).

Principle #1 is really a guideline for architecting the software, not for use of the software. As a programmer, it's perfectly reasonable to have that guideline in place for how you design the code in general. However, for the purpose of actually using the software, it's not valid. Not all content is equal, even when it's of exactly the same type (just wander through YouTube comments for examples). The entire point of content blocking is content discrimination — you are explicitly not being neutral.

Even in their examples of appropriate use (performance, security, and privacy), there is no 'neutral' value. I may be concerned about privacy with respect to Doubleclick, but not, say, Amazon (or whatever other sites of your choice). I may be concerned about performance on some sites, but willing to give it a pass on others. This explicitly goes against principle #3, of being agnostic to the source, when in fact the source explicitly informs my choice of action. I cannot ignore the source, and there is no "content neutrality".

Of course this can be turned around. If Verizon offered an adblocker that they developed, that blocked all the ads they didn't want you to see (ie: competition), but gave you plenty of their own ads, that would definitely fail both the principle, and user expectations. So they could point at an example like that and say that their principals mean 'that'.

However that's not all that that series of words means, and based on the behavior of Mozilla over the last couple of years, I don't expect them to change their wording based on user feedback, because they want to be ambiguous about this; it gives them an out. They'll "listen", and then dump all the feedback in the trash bin.

Comment Re:how long (Score 1) 152

The amount of memory Firefox uses has always been a catch-all statement for bad behavior and poor performance, not a strict indication of the problem of running out of RAM (usually).

Personally, for a very long time, if Firefox crossed 1 GB of RAM usage, I could pretty much guarantee issues with slow tab switching, glitchy scrolling, the browser as a whole briefly hanging every few minutes, sometimes even bogging down my entire OS if it decided to saturate the CPU.

The degree to which this effect manifested could pretty much be exactly tied to its current RAM usage. I started to notice it at 700 MB, it was annoying at 900 MB, and at 1.1 GB it was completely unusable. This had absolutely no correlation with the total amount of RAM in the system. If I have 2 GB or 32 GB, it doesn't matter. Once Firefox crossed 1 GB, it was all over.

So when people say, "It uses less RAM", I hear, "It's less likely to reach a state that I have noticed invariably leads to poor performance all around", not "I just saved $300 on my car insurance"... er, "I just saved 300 MB of my overall RAM pool that I can use for other stuff".

Slashdot Top Deals

You have a tendency to feel you are superior to most computers.

Working...