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Comment Re:"We can do that - but it would be wrong." (Score 1) 148

I'm thinking it would depend on the country. In the US, it would probably not be illegal in any sense. Privacy is completely upside down there. In Canada, it might be a different story. Companies are only allowed to collect private information with your explicit agreement, and only for the purposes for which permission was given.

Comment Re:Yah You Know, CEOs (Score 1) 393

Let's not forget that Oracle pays dividends. Depending on your jurisdiction, dividends are anywhere from tax-free up to a certain amount or are taxed at an extremely preferential rate. The reasoning is that the corp has already paid corporate income tax on the cash being doled out.

Comment Re:What Disgusting Moderation (Score 2) 709

I'm not a muslim or an expert in the koran by any means, but isn't that text regarding Mohammed talking to his followers about how they should treat the incumbents when they re-enter Mecca? I believe that Place of Worship business is talking about the Kaaba. Mohammad was forced out of Mecca for a while and founded Medina, then returned after a bit to reclaim Mecca. Seems like pretty standard wartime politics to me for any people of any era.

Anyway, if you can take some text out of context and try to justify your condemnation of an entire people, I think you were already biased to begin with and looking for something with which to justify it. I wonder if you hold similar views about Jews and Christians over Deuteronomy 20 or Americans over Iraq.

Comment Re:I have problems with this (Score 5, Interesting) 1319

Why can't religious people see this as a much, much greater feat of creation, resulting in God being infinitely more omnipotent?

Theologians have been deeply pondering this point for hundreds, if not thousands of years: Whether or not God made a linear story in which we have an unwilling part, predestination, or if we have free will. Both are hinted at in the Bible. In predestination, God is the author of sin, which is distasteful to some. But if free will is truly free, God doesn't know the outcome of decisions that haven't been made yet, and that limits God's omniscience.

One way to reconcile the apparent paradox is to say that, while we as humans can only perceive one branch, God has awareness of every possible branch from the beginning of time to the end. A being that could create a system like that and maintain an awareness of it would be massively omnipotent to the point of being impossible to completely comprehend with the human mind.

Polarization is recognizable when each side can only conceive a charicature of the other. "Religious people" don't conform to one way of thinking any more than "science people" do, nor are the two mutually exclusive.

Comment Re:4chan and facebook are both wrong. (Score 1) 371

I think they both have value, but for different reasons.

Facebook allows the expression of what Jungians might call the persona, which is the face we all present to the world. Whether we know it or not, we construct our personas as a mask to protect our real selves. We show the world what we want others to believe about us. Clever people who realize this can quite convincingly construct an almost completely artificial self. Think politicians, business executives, and high-functioning sociopaths.

What I think is more interesting about 4chan and /b/ in particular is that complete anonymity allows for expression of the shadow aspect. I think it's this idea that moot expresses when he describes /b/ as "the internet's dark heart." The thing I find fascinating is that many attributes that we hide from others, that we fear and dislike about ourselves, are common to the human experience.

We conceal things about ourselves in order to form communities and we do it according to what we believe are the standards of that community. /b/ is important because it allows us to explore what we have in common without fear of punishment or ostracization.

Comment Re:Violated Wheaton's Law, chose to be a dick (Score 1) 469

Terms like that are generally considered unfair and unenforceable, and could render the entire contract null and void. You could sign a contract that gave a person the right under certain conditions to take your children but that wouldn't be enforceable either.

Contracts are not laws.

Comment Re:Well... (Score 1) 469

The first one never happened and the second is suing for reinstatement based on violation for his civil rights. He'll win, too.

But while while we're playing "bad argument by analogy" let me have a go and maybe give you a better one. Even a fictional restaurant that may refuse to serve TSA agents can't take a person's money and *then* throw him out without delivering the product that was fairly paid.

That kind of underhanded tactic deserves harsh punishment. EA needs to be called to the carpet for this one.

Comment Re:Violated Wheaton's Law, chose to be a dick (Score 1) 469

I think you're trolling. But in case you're not, a car analogy.

If you buy a car from someone and, after the transaction is finished, you turn and say to him, "by the way, I think you're the biggest asshole I've ever met," he doesn't then get to keep your money _and_ take his car back. Not even temporarily as unilaterally imposed penance for the buyer being rude in the sole opinion of the seller.

In fact, I'd be tempted to file a complaint with the credit card company and attempt a chargeback.

This sort of nonsense is exactly why I've cut way back on my games purchases and avoid EA like the plague. They are pure unadulterated evil and have, indeed, sold their corporate soul to the dark one.

Comment Re:global resource corp's microwaves seem cooler (Score 1) 223

This company's financials look dire. About five years ago they were trading near $5 but just last week their stock hit $.05 on news of a financial squabble with a key partner. None of the insiders have bought stock for almost a year.

Sadly, it looks like this company is teetering on the edge of bankruptcy. I wish it were something worth investing in.

Comment Re:First sale doctrine (Score 1) 775

Polygamy is not a merger. Mergers turn multiple entities into one single thing. Polygamy still retains the individual people. The appropriate analogy would be cannibalism, and even that is wrong since mergers are usually mutually beneficial.

One can sort of defend that analogy, actually. In marriage, two people are considered to become "one flesh" under the law. This is why one spouse can't be compelled to testify against the other, since it would be self-incrimination. In marriage, one's spouse's family becomes one's own under the law. One's brother-in-law is indeed one's brother under the law (as opposed to by blood relation). Spouses often refer to their parents-in-law as Mom and Dad. All property and debt becomes that of the union rather than the individual. Each spouse may separately exercise financial operations that confer obligations on both parties.

Comment I think it works both ways (Score 1) 132

Or maybe the other way around. I've noticed that when performing an activity that requires your unconscious/autonomic part of your brain to take over, memory recall will actively interfere with your ability to carry out that activity. We usually think of it as confidence or the ability to overcome distraction but I think it really comes down to clearing your mind of conscious thought/memories and allowing your other brain to take over.

Think about what it felt like to learn to type. At first, you had to think about which finger to put where to get the letter you wanted. But at some point, you had to start taking little leaps of faith and stop thinking about it. The same goes for sight reading on the piano. You don't have time to stop and think about what the notes mean and where you have to move your fingers. You have to just /do/ it. And if you start getting plagued with conscious thoughts and memories while you're in a performance, it will cause a distraction and lead to a memory slip, totally derailing the performance. The same goes for carrying a cup of hot coffee up the stairs. If you concentrate on the task of which foot to put on which step and making sure the cup doesn't tilt, you're sure to trip or spill it.

So I don't think it should be any surprise that performing a tetris-like activity supresses memory. Or rather, it requires the suppression of memory to do it well (or at least try to do it well).

Comment Re:In other news... (Score 1) 223

I took an ancient, generic 286 computer, and upgraded it through 386SX, 486 DX/2, Cx 6x86, and AMD Athlon motherboards before finally switching to ATX. It was a cheezy, god-only-knows-who-made it power supply that came from a 'not-quite-aluminum-foil' AT case.

I call shenanigans. As I recall, and from what I read on this old Anantech Athlon motherboard review, Athlon motherboards were never produced in an AT form factor, partially due to the fact that AT PSUs were not expected to be able to handle the draw from power hungry athlons.

I also recall #4 having been debunked. Letting the moving parts run 24/7 causes more wear overall than power-up/power-down cycling. You may notice failures more often during a reboot but there's no causal relationship there. In fact, periodic restarts are a good practice to test startup and shutdown routines. 300-day uptimes are wonderful and all but good luck figuring out which of the last 78 changes broke the startup script.

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