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Comment I'd love for my daughters to go into IT... (Score 1) 582

...but it's difficult when the rest of the world (including the people who are ostensibly trying to solve the problem) is busy conspiring to convince them that IT isn't for them.

Girls tend to as much of an interest in math and science as boys until fairly early on in grade school (I feel like it was 3rd grade or so). It seems to me that there's a lot of cultural pressure -- much of it from women -- pushing young girls away from STEM fields and into other areas of study. The aforementioned people who are ostensibly trying to solve the problem are blaming the IT industry, when in fact this happens much too early for the supposed culture of IT to have much of anything to do with it. Get girls and young women interested in IT and get people used to seeing them interested in IT, and the cultural issues will age out of the population as young IT professionals grow up used to being surrounded by both men and women.

The trouble is that the primary group of people looking into this issue is that they start out with the conclusion that men are uniquely at fault for the gender gap in IT and then go looking for evidence to support that,

Comment Re:Surprised I'm still alive! (Score 1) 527

We were made to eat unprocessed (or less processed) foods, meat included. Before we started processing everything, we used to get a lot of our sugar from fruit, which doesn't cause your blood sugar to spike as much as processed sugar (particularly high fructose corn syrup). When it comes to starch, we're a lot better off getting it from sources where they haven't removed all of the fiber, like whole grain bread.

A lot of the processed foods we eat have had all the fiber taken out, presumably because people find the texture more pleasant, but we really need fiber with our sugar and starch.

Comment This can only be a good thing. (Score 2) 182

We'll get an economic boost from this. I mean, yes, it'll increase the incidence of cancer, but with something like cancer, there's no real way to trace back exactly why any one individual got cancer, and even if that could be done, there's no way of knowing which company released the particular chemical that caused the cancer, because a lot of different companies will be doing it. And if everyone's responsible, no one is.

To parahrase Nelson from the Simpsons, it's a victimless crime, like punching someone in the dark!

Comment Laying waste to a planet... (Score 1) 359

...is different from literally destroying the entire planet.

A starship from Star Trek can't *blow up* a planet the way the Death Star can. Presumably a single Star Destroyer could lay waste to a planet as easily as a starship. All you would need to do is carpet-bomb it with nuclear weapons, which are pretty primitive by Star Wars standards.

Comment Not a surprise coming from Apple (Score 3, Informative) 428

Apple thrives on the top-down "you are the consumer, we are the producer" business model. I can't say I'm particularly shocked to see an apple exec whining about youtube (although I must say, I'm disappointed that it the exec in question is Trent Reznor). To say that Youtube is "built" on content piracy is extremely disingenuous. Yes, it obviously happens there, but if someone were to remove all of the pirated content from Youtube, only a very small percentage of users would even care.

These are the words of a company that would like to see user-generated content made illegal, on the basis that a small percentage of users occasionally use it for piracy. Youtube is a tremendous example of "substantial non-infringing use".

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I bet the human brain is a kludge. -- Marvin Minsky