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Comment Re:God must be dead . . . (Score 1) 1061

First a seemingly unrelated and wellknown story:
A fellow was stuck on his rooftop in a flood. He was praying to God for help.

Soon a man in a rowboat came by and the fellow shouted to the man on the roof, "Jump in, I can save you."

The stranded fellow shouted back, "No, it's OK, I'm praying to God and he is going to save me."

So the rowboat went on.

Then a motorboat came by. "The fellow in the motorboat shouted, "Jump in, I can save you."

To this the stranded man said, "No thanks, I'm praying to God and he is going to save me. I have faith."

So the motorboat went on.

Then a helicopter came by and the pilot shouted down, "Grab this rope and I will lift you to safety."

To this the stranded man again replied, "No thanks, I'm praying to God and he is going to save me. I have faith."

So the helicopter reluctantly flew away.

Soon the water rose above the rooftop and the man drowned. He went to Heaven. He finally got his chance to discuss this whole situation with God, at which point he exclaimed, "I had faith in you but you didn't save me, you let me drown. I don't understand why!"

To this God replied, "I sent you a rowboat and a motorboat and a helicopter, what more did you expect?"

Westboro PR durring a live radio interview: "God protects our website."
(Anonymous hacked them durring the show.)

I don't agree with you that God is dead, but there are no shortage of people in this world who are not listening to what God has to them.

Comment Re:Excellent News! (Score 3, Insightful) 504

I predict this will be their fall back position when they see sales tanking on everything except tablets.

Microsoft won't see Windows 8 sales tanking. Once Windows 8 is released, Volume License customers won't have the option to buy Windows 7 licenses, only Windows 8 licenses. Volume Licenses come with downgrade rights so customers will be installing Windows 7, but Microsoft will be reporting Windows 8 sales.

Comment Punch the Monkey went too far. (Score 1) 716

For a long time I didn't use ad blocking. Then one day while trying to research a technical issue, I ran into the worst "Punch the Monkey" variant ever. The idea was a ninja warrior with mystic powers was hurling throwing starts at you. The artwork reminded me of Word Ware II era anti-Japanese propaganda. To add to the horror, it was an animated advertisement in Flash. The sound played by this advertisement can only be described as the result of piping the Windows kernel into your audio device mixed with the sound of bunnies in a blender (if you've ever heard the scream of a terrified rabbit you'd understand). The creators of this monstrosity put it into an infinite loop and disabled the control in Flash player for stopping the thing. The only menu option available was "About Flash Player." To make matters worse, I was blasting some excellent classic rock MP3s out of my speakers when this loaded, so the awful sound of this advertisement was turned up to 11.

And that is the day I installed ad blocking, never to turn it off again. If the advertising industry adopted a code of conduct so that something like this never again appeared in any medium I would consider removing Ad Block Plus. Since that isn't going to happen, my sincere apologies to any Web sites that rely on advertising revenue.

Comment Re:Just because something is a theory... (Score 1) 1218

They are confusing theory with hypothesis. In non-scientific applications, the two are mostly interchangeable. In science however, a theory has been repeatedly confirmed by testing, observation and experiment. Evolution can be observed, even tested. Valid theory. Creationism can't be tested, observed, or experimented upon. Thus it will always be a hypothesis as far as science is confirmed.

Comment Re:There's Sheet Music, and Sheet Music (Score 1) 290

And probably will get it taken down or muted because YouTube's filter system isn't smart enough to know the difference.

I don't know how YouTube's automated systems work, but that shouldn't be the case. Two different performances, two different recordings, even if they are of the same music with same arrangements should still be different and identifiable. It will come down to how much differentiation YouTube's automated systems allow for when fingerprinting audio.

Comment Re:Bah. (Score 1) 304

There are no shortage of smaller developers creating Quicken alternatives for Mac. iBank, Cashculator, and CheckBook Pro for example. I've settled on Mint.com myself after using GNUCase, Microsoft Money, Quicken, and iBank. Mint.com isn't for everyone, but after changing how I was managing money I feel it works better than other products for me. Bank Simple also looks interesting for anyone who is currently not satisfied with their bank.

Comment As a potential gun owner (Score 2, Interesting) 646

I currently do not own any guns, but I come from a family of hunters and gun owners. I have been through gun safety training. At some point in my life it is highly likely that I will inherit guns from family members or purchase my own guns. I'm not into hunting, but I do enjoy target shooting and skeet. My father always kept his guns in a large combination lock, fire rated, etc. gun safe. It was a 1,000 pound monster of of thing. OK, possibly exaggerating, but it was huge, solid, and heavy and not something that can be moved without at least a heavy duty moving dolly and at least two people.

I would never store a gun in a lock box. A lock box is for transporting your gun from your home to the range or other place of it's use. Properly storing your gun means a quality gun safe that is bolted to the floor (for smaller safes) or a full on monster of a safe (for rifles, shotguns, etc.) that is not easily moved should a thief (or multiple thieves) enter your home. Even with my guns were in a safe, I would also have trigger locks on every one of them with the keys stored in a separate, smaller safe, again bolted to the floor.

Now this is my own opinion of proper gun handling based on personal experience, information from experts, as well as a dose of personal paranoia. I have a 3 year old child who will someday be instructed by myself or my father in proper gun safety, because she will be exposed to guns in our family. This is not optional. If she shows interest in joining her family in target shooting and hunting she will also go through gun safety courses before participating. Also not optional.

So I find it very irresponsible that these are being sold to meet the federal requirements. I do appreciate the opinion of gun owners who feel this type of law is infringing on their rights, but my personal opinion is that this is simply putting good, common sense into law, and that while selling these lock boxes does meet the letter of the law, it completely skirts the intent of the law.

That a law enforcement agency issued these defective by design devices to it's officers is very concerning, and the reported response to being shown that they are flawed devices is even worse. It is equally concerning that at least some of the officers in question didn't secure their weapons in the first place and that this wasn't a policy of the department before a member of the department was hit with personal tragedy. The sheriff department should expect their officers to show a good dose of common sense when it comes to their service as well as personal weapons, but in the world we live in common sense is no longer sufficient.

Comment Re:Think about potential abuses (Score 1) 158

My thought was protest groups, rally groups, etc. Run photos of the group through facial recognition and bam, instant list of supporters of whatever cause. On the good side, hate groups might be less likely to voice their opinions in public if someone were to photograph them, run facial recognition, and post the results online, or members could be publicly shunned, denied services, jobs, etc. On the flip side the same could happen for worthy causes, sparking more issues between opposing groups. And how many political careers could be ended or mired in controversy years down the road due to attendance at a group while you were in college?

I'm on the fence on this scenario, on one hand forcing a name to the supporters of any cause doesn't seem like that bad of an idea. If you truly support said cause, you shouldn't be reluctant to put your name with the cause in the first place. On the other hand the potential for abuse is extremely high. So identify the detriments to society and direct laws there so there are limits, but don't' hold back the technology and it's potential benefits.

Comment Re:I've done it (Score 1) 212

Even better, if your budget and storage requirements make it work, go SSD for storage instead of spinning drives. So far this year we've had about 10% of the hard drives in our laptops fail. We seem to have gotten unlucky with a batch of laptops purchased 1-2 years ago, or our users are unusually hard on their laptops. Either way not great with the hard drive shortage earlier this year.

Comment Re:What do you expect? (Score 1) 488

If I remember correctly, plasma was introduced in my 8th grade science class. Where I grew up, K-6 science was taught by classroom teachers with a series of classroom kits that rotated between classrooms for a grade level. Only PE, music, media (library skills), and computers were taught by specialists, though there were a few teachers who taught advanced math and reading for students who where ahead of their classmates. (No personal experience with the other end of the spectrum myself.) From 7th grade onwards each subject was it's own class with a teacher who was licensed to teach a specific subject and age group.

So your statement that teachers marked you wrong for your correct answer isn't surprising, the teacher may only know what's in their teachers guide for the course material as they are licensed for general K-6 classroom instruction (or your state's equivalent if you're in the US.) A good teacher would correct your mark if you brought evidence that the test answer was indeed correct, something that should be easy in today's internet connected age. Much easier that it would have been for myself who would have had to go to the library and pull out the card catalog, on actual paper stock, to find evidence to back my answer.

Comment All about the presentation (Score 1) 291

First be a good public speaker. You're much more likely too keep someone's attention for the duration of your presentation if people aren't annoyed listening to you.

And here's someing I've wanted to try but haven't had the opportunity to yet. If your using a Mac to show a slide deck, configure custom voice commands for "computer, next slide" and "computer, previous slide." If it works, everyone you're presenting to will most likely be distracted by that and forget the rest of your presentation, but they'll remember something. ;-)

Comment Re:Apparently (Score 5, Informative) 232

What is the obsession with nuking from orbit? If you're in orbit, a kinetic projectile of sufficient mass will get the job done. No nuclear materials, or any sort of intelligence on the projectile is needed. A sufficiently massive chunk of iron at sufficient velocity will get the job done.

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