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Comment Re:Evil reaches the iPad (Score 1) 249

They are the gatekeepers for the masses. If Google were altering search results for Egypt because of its political beliefs and a large portion of the population were thus kept ignorant of facts or at a minimum, oblivious of opposing opinions because of the filtering; the damage caused could be much more wide spread and dangerous than the incidents themselves. Remember, the slow steady changes are hardest to guard against. The tides of public knowledge and opinion can be diverted slowly to great effect and with horrible consequences. I think that it's a fair warning that if news organizations are not the greatest threat of evil today, then they have too much control of what we are allowed to see without any regulation of real content or mandate to provide the not-so-often fair and balanced reporting that almost all claim.

Comment Re:Use the Carl Sagan Scale (Score 1) 225


From a 2004 estimate article:

Astronomers estimate there are about 100 thousand million stars in the Milky Way alone. Outside that, there are millions upon millions of other galaxies also!
Hipparcos mapped millions of stars in our galaxy... ...For the Universe, the galaxies are our small representative volumes, and there are something like 10to the 11th to 10 to the 12th stars in our galaxy, and there are perhaps something like 10 to the 11th or 10 to the 12th galaxies.

With this simple calculation you get something like 10to the 22nd to 10 to the 24th stars in the Universe. This is only a rough number, as obviously not all galaxies are the same, just like on a beach the depth of sand will not be the same in different places.

That's about 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 stars in the universe, which is (I think) called 1 billion trillion?

Comment Re:How about... (Score 1) 304

I'm not talking about plans for room temp superconducting intel chipsets, but things that the company has said are proprietary and they would not like to have public or in the hands of their competitors. This could be something as simple as a demographic response report of a new product design. Something that's not earth shattering and needs every protection but that you could have the responsibility to protect. Then do you tell the employer that it's now a matter of police record? It's all about balance here, everything isn't so important as to need a dual key, voiceprint and retna unlocking self destruct verification system but it may be under a contract to keep trade or process secrets, secret. Get it?

I don't think top secret data is given to most companies and the last place you would see it is a portable device. You could have companies most secret data and the cops would still have a right to look at that if it was significant.

The problem is that even though they have the right under a certain law, maybe that law isn't just. Or necessary, or narrow enough to actually do more good than harm to our rights. This isn't even taking to issue that I don't want my personal data out there even if it wouldn't ruin my life, I may just not care to have it viewed by others, and keeping it under a basic encryption set and taking care not to lose it should be enouogh protection for not "top secret" but personal information. At least in the land of the free.

Comment Re:How about... (Score 1) 304

And since we are not all perfect, don't work for the brightest company bosses, and even the US government is still trying to work out a good process of handling sensitive material that needs to be transported by the user masses...

What happens when a business or government employee (ours or theirs) travels through one of these nations or states that have enacted a search process that allows them to take and make copies of data stored therein? Even if they're not in the limited class of people traveling with diplomatic immunity they should be given some measure of protection to the data they carry with them without having to do the almost impossible task of completely encrypting all data and making impenetrable any possible methods of gaining access by unauthorized peoples.

Even if they had a perfect system, they need to get to the data while traveling so they would have to have a method of accessing the data.
If traveling through the airports (and now we're one step away if arrested), then they can request the password to encrypted files. So the basic question stands...

If you have signed an NDA and have the unfortunate set of circumstances put upon you, do you have any option that would not land up with you breaking at a minimum a contract, and at worst the law?

Comment Re:How about... (Score 3, Interesting) 304

How about you have data required to do your job on a device supplied by your employer that also happened to have you sign a NDA?

How would this play out with a cellphone or a laptop now that you have two distinct laws you have to abide by.

Should the govt be able to request your password for information stored on your (or a company) device that you have signed contracts to keep secret?

Comment Re:The most surprising turn of events (Score 1) 460

You missed the point; we all have to agree on dates to communicate so you should get your facts straight.

You said that:

That being the case, we as a culture have also decided that decades start a year x0, centuries start at x00, and millenniums start at x000.

This is factually incorrect as centuries END in that format. The last year in x00 is the end of that century, not the beginning.

Then you state:

Beyond your lack of education on how the language you are using works, you seem to think that there is something concrete about what dates are what. As stated earlier, our dates are simply an arbitrary way for a bunch of people to agree on time.

This is incorrect in itself because it claims
A: setting dates is an arbitrary way for a bunch of people to agree on time, against the claim B: that there is not "something concrete about what dates are what". I would ask you to point to your sources for that claim and find an example of people not using their calendar and matching it with different calendars from other cultures and having them all match up to form a cohesive timeline with whatever reference each culture has set. This is accepted as standard and there is no arbitrary old or new method of referring to dates just what calendar you choose to reference. Please show authoritative examples if you disagree. Just because uneducated people think something doesn't mean that they change scientific fact or change the accepted method of referencing or calculating things by people in the field who have the education to make claims about the proper way to do something in that field.

To address your original claim: please reference this site to understand the year 1 issue:

If you have another viewpoint please cite examples.

You don't want to be, as you say:
a pseudo-intellectual halfway thinking through a subject, making a mistake, thinking they have found an "ah-ha" idea, and then refusing to re-evaluate when it is pointed out that they are wrong.

Comment Re:store and release energy? (Score 1) 315

Even confused a former science fiction writer and current Makezine author into making the following statement:

"I have never denied that a vehicle may be designed that will move into a headwind if the propeller is geared appropriately. What I do not believe is that this vehicle can start from rest with the wind behind it, accelerate until it is moving at the same speed as the wind, and then continue to accelerate faster than the wind, i.e. into a net headwind, without any fluctuations in wind speed, and without any gear-shifting along the way. That is what the original video from Florida purported to demonstrate, and is where all the arguments began. I have always suspected that the Florida video was faked.

I know very little about Rick Cavallaro's cart, and am not very interested, partly because Rick has been extremely abusive, obnoxious, and condescending to me, and partly because, as I say above, I am quite willing to believe that his vehicle can move into a headwind. Indeed, the very primitive cart that I built for my original MAKE article did succeed in edging forward into a strong blast from a large fan. Again, what I do not believe is that his vehicle or any other can start with a steady wind behind it, accelerate to a speed equal to that of the wind, and then continue to accelerate so that it is moving faster than the wind, in one uninterrupted process.

I have repeated myself in an effort to make this clear. -- Charles Platt"

He does not acknowledge the existence of this video:


Comment Re:Hmmm (Score 5, Insightful) 405

This is BS, get the metalshop and woodshop to build and maintain the desks. They'll learn to build things to survive the worst and if they have to sit in them anyway they'll make them comfortable too. The higher schools can build for the lower where they don't have the facilities and give it to them at cost since they're learning, kinda like the hair stylist and cooking schools.

Comment Re:Count me in (Score 4, Informative) 703

I suggest you read over your comment again and see if you can spot the hate in your own posts before commenting again. You are making it too easy to show what the problem is.

Here's the wiki:
A straw man argument is an informal fallacy based on misrepresentation of an opponent's position.[1] To "attack a straw man" is to create the illusion of having refuted a proposition by substituting a superficially similar yet unequivalent proposition (the "straw man"), and refuting it, without ever having actually refuted the original position.

Here's the specific types:
1.Presenting a misrepresentation of the opponent's position and then refuting it, thus giving the appearance that the opponent's actual position has been refuted.[1]
2.Quoting an opponent's words out of context - i.e. choosing quotations that misrepresent the opponent's actual intentions (see contextomy and quote mining).[2]
3.Presenting someone who defends a position poorly as the defender, then refuting that person's arguments - thus giving the appearance that every upholder of that position (and thus the position itself) has been defeated.[1]
4.Inventing a fictitious persona with actions or beliefs which are then criticized, implying that the person represents a group of whom the speaker is critical.
5.Oversimplifying an opponent's argument, then attacking this oversimplified version.

Without asking for details on why the poster used an adjective that's not a completely factual representation of "some kind of dental infection" you go off about how he/she has committed "what I'd call a hateful attack" and use that logic to condemn a group of people by generalizing a post or posts into a representation of the group which you disparage in a conclusion of "proof that it's not the right that are the "hate mongers", but the left." Finally using the name calling that you are supposedly denouncing.

Try reading this:

Strange that every time I see an argument against (group A), it is almost always based on how hateful (Group A) is.

See any similarities between your own (generalized) statement and what you are trying to prove in your posts?

By your own words you were participating and instigating that process. You based your post on how hateful a group is and used an example of someone using an adjective to give visual power to their opinion without asking or participating in a discussion based on facts, You purposly misconstrue it to suit your own hatefull indignation.

Now you're in a bad spot because you have to avoid the recursion of having the original poster and yourself on the same path of having called the other side names. To leave your straw man misrepresentation a straight example: Do you think that by describing shows or people on one side as having "festering mouth(s)" is more accurately about claiming that they had a "dental infection" or that they were "spouting disease", as in hate or fear mongering? Now compare that to your own finger pointing and name calling and see how much better you and your side are for not spreading hatred without waiting for or wanting the facts or a discussion thereof.

Comment Re:Count me in (Score 4, Insightful) 703

Cannot contain the laughter...

That was the perfect Colbert immitation of cyclical fallacy based arguments!

Build a strawman, name it hatred, claim "literal" hatred, denounce the made up statement, over-generalize and claim as proof.
The last line though, was absolute perfection. Projecting your own hatred in a statement about projection.

Classic Colbert.

Comment Re:see power point can cost you your job (Score 4, Informative) 194

I think you're missing the point (pun intended).

He's talking about just relying on powerpoint to give information. To actually have the slideshow mean something without giving it any real information to start with.

Crap in = crap out. (with pretty graphs and moving icons)

He complains that just having a powerpoint presentation every 12 hours is not the same as having an actual breifing and discussion of information. It's not that you couldn't use powerpoint to do it, but that you have to have, as a goal, the need to actually accomplish something besides presenting a slideshow. Presenting the slideshow not a goal in itself as he claims that it is treated. He mentions that the slides don't even change. Now that would be a hell I would try and avoid.

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