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Comment Re:That's the police for you (Score 2) 277

I had Prey installed on my son's laptop, which was stolen along with a bunch of other things. After I told Prey it was stolen, we got a geolocation hit in a nearby town with the name of the hotel in the WiFi. The local police went out at midnight and collected it all for us. We drove over in the morning and brought them brownies.

Comment Careful with anecdotes (Score 5, Interesting) 777

I recently had a great experience with police. We had a break-in, and all the laptops were stolen. Fortunately we had Prey on one of them, and it tracked the thieves to a hotel in a nearby town. The local police investigated and recovered almost everything. We drove over the next day and brought them brownies.

Comment Re:My daughter was extremely upset as well. (Score 1) 228

A similar thing happened to me. My finance was signing my daughter up for a game when she put in her actual age. This purged her account completely, which was really annoying. I drilled into everyone's heads that they should always lie about their age on the Internet, which goes against my general policy of honesty.

The moral of the story is that laws have unintended consequences.

Comment Re:Possible treatments (Score 1) 838

It looks like aluminum likely doesn't cause alzheimer's. There was also some evidence that high doses of zinc can cause problems.
On the other hand, a recent study suggests that too much zinc might be the problem. In this laboratory experiment, zinc caused beta amyloid from cerebrospinal fluid -- the fluid that bathes the brain -- to form clumps similar to the plaques of Alzheimer's disease.

My general rule of thumb is to stay physically active, eat well, and stay mentally sharp. Mega doses of whatever likely aren't going to help much.

Comment Depression (Score 1) 838

My mother in law is currently dying of cancer, in Oregon, with probably a few weeks to live. She's pretty depressed about it, though isn't considering suicide. My personal goal is to have her take the right medication so that she's as pain-free and comfortable as possible. Hospice is also covering 100% of all medical fees.

I guess what I'm saying is that legislating who can or can't commit suicide based on depression isn't necessarily the solution. Taking care of people so that they can be as high-functioning, pain-free, and financially secure is perhaps a more practical solution.

Comment Assorted adventure games (Score 1) 480

Neverwinter Nights can be picked up for $10 and runs on older machines. There is a huge amount of content out there, though the engine is a bit dated, people have made lots of things.

Minecraft is the mainstay in our household, perfect for a ten year-old. Build, explore, mine, and create your own world.

We had a good time with Trine, and up to three can play. It's a pretty game, though hooking up multiple mice and keyboards to a PC can be tricky.

Comment Re:I really like Woz but.. (Score 1) 207

There is certainly value with long-term projects in education (I have a master's degree in biology education but am not currently teaching).

At the same time, I think there's immense value in giving regular feedback to students. I'm most fond of unified smaller projects which lead up to larger projects, with guidance along the way. Imaging starting a year-long course by saying "Everyone, build a content management system!" and not providing any indication of how they're doing until the end.

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When it is incorrect, it is, at least *authoritatively* incorrect. -- Hitchiker's Guide To The Galaxy