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Comment Read Tobias Buckell's post on the matter (Score 1) 437

I notice that most of Slashdot appears to be anti-McMillan, and not anti-Amazon (surprise). For a different perspective on the issue, everyone should read the post by Tobias Buckell on the matter. In short, he is a midlist author, and he talks about his experience with the eBook market. He has seen negligible differences when his books are given away from free versus when they are charged for, and the lower price points are not enough to cover the costs (which he outlines) to go to market.

Agree, disagree, it is helpful to read a perspective from the other side.

Comment The rise of Behavioral Economics (Score 1) 301

The economics blogs have been talking about this issue for a while. All of the blogs that saw this coming for years (like CalculatedRisk) are very anti-quant.

What we are seeing is a push for the study of behavioral economics, as seen in the popular new book Animal Spirits. This book is being heavily quoted by Obama's Budget Director Peter Orszag.

Comment Re:Second Try: Three Points (Score 2, Insightful) 664

Point 1: You do research on the federal doll, you do the work you were asked to do not choose your research to vent your personal opinions and unrelated suppositions.
Correct. That means you do the research topic you were asked to do, not come up with the research conclusions you were asked to. One is government funding priorities in science, the other is an abuse of the scientific process. If you are following these hearings, you would know that it is the latter that is in question here, not the former.

Point 2: Scientists (especially climatologists) have been predicting that the sky will fall pretty regularly for the last half-century and most of their predictions have been incorrect.
The mini ice age claims of the 1970s were sensationalized by the press, and not by the scientists themselves; the scientific claims were much more conservative. Do you have examples of such claims by scientists, and not the media, that support this assertion?

Point 3: (related to 2). Using the specific buzzwords/phrases that were censored is appropriate when they convey a meaning other than intended. Proving that human interference may directly cause changes to the environment does not mean that the Earth is going to dry up into a tsunami ridden dustbowl tomorrow
I have no idea what point you are arguing here. Scientists are trying to do two thing: model the future affects of global warming, and determine if it is the result of human influence. If the latter is not the case, then we cannot make policy at all; there is nothing we can do about the warming as we are not causing it. This is separate from the former study which is used to determine what types of policies need to be undertaken and how swift and drastic they must be. Your claim that evidence of one (human influence) does not affect the other (models of future affects) makes no sense.

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