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Comment From an unnamed Oxford lecturer (Score 2) 402

"nothing that you will learn in the course of your studies will be of the slightest use to you in after life â" save only this â" that if you work hard and intelligently you should be able to detect when a man is talking rot, and that, in my view is the main, if not the sole purpose of education"

Comment Re:Nothing New (Score 3, Insightful) 477

StormReaver is right, this is nothing new. I ran into some remarkably foul examples on Usenet in the '80s.

Managing a forum is one of the most challenging jobs I have ever had. One tool that is more powerful than it appears is setting a good example. If the moderators are frequent posters they can set a tone for the place. Then the jerks will be the exceptions. A positive feedback loop begins when good people are willing to stay and they create a space where more good people want to hang out.

Leave the jerks in place and it's a down-spiral to Lord of the Flies.

Comment Do you HONESTLY hit your cap? (Score -1, Flamebait) 218

I have two kids who are glued to Netflix and YouTube every waking moment. My wife watches TV shows on Amazon. I spend most of my time connected to various servers doing upgrades and maintenance. I've never come close to hitting the cap. Comcast (and all the other ISPs) say that the cap issue only affects about 1% of the customer base. It appears that the entire 1% eats up bandwidth posting complaints on message boards because that is all you really see on the Internet. I personally think that most of them are simply being dishonest. They don't hit the cap at all. They just want to complain so they can complain. I assume that if Ford announced it was putting a limiter in their new cars that limits the max speed to 200mph, they would complain that they regularly suffer due to the limitation and simply cannot go on with life until it is removed. Boo hoo. I'll care when (if) I ever get close to hitting the bandwidth cap.

Comment Info on Verizon and Sony FM Chips (Score 4, Informative) 340

I was just told about this thread - so this may be old. But, I've done a lot of research into Verizon and the Sony Z3V, which has an FM chip.

TLDR: The chip is not disabled. The OS is altered to mute FM output.

I have three Sony Z3V phones. All three have an FM chip. I can check to ensure the FM chip works by using the Sony diagnostics tool. Dial *#*#7378523#*#* and you get a diagnostics menu. Select hardware tests and test the FM chip. If it was disabled, it wouldn't work. It does work. Just type in the frequency to tune to and you get radio. The problem is that this screen will timeout. When it does, the radio goes away. Also, there's no volume adjustment. It is at max volume only.

In the original OS distribution, Verizon simply didn't include an FM app with the phone. You could download one (such as Spirit FM) and listen to the radio. With the 5.1.1 update, the radio stopped working. But, there was a catch. If you used Sony's FM app - which you have to download from a "trusted source" and install as an untrusted third party app - it still worked. You could listen to the radio. Then, there was the second update to 5.1.1. Instead of "disabling" FM, Verizon went another route. They mute the FM audio. So, you can download just about any FM app. You can run it. You can tune it in. You can see that it has a signal. You can see the over-the-air identification text, which is usually the song being played. But, there is no audio.

Now, controversy: Verizon has quoted multiple times that it would cost up to $100/phone to "enable" the FM chip in the phones. The chip is enabled. They are spending effort in muting it. Verizon has also quoted multiple times that an FM tuner interferes with normal phone operations. Before the upgrade to 5.1.1, I listened to the radio on my phone all the time and never had any trouble with any other operations. In my opinion, Verizon simply wants you to use data to listen to music. They don't want you to listen to music for free.

Comment Re:Do not push this button (Score 2) 192

Thesupraman has everything right and I'm just filling in background.

What makes a radioisotope dangerous is
1. A long enough half-life that it is still around when the plume reaches its first victims
2. A short enough half-life to be intensely radioactive.
3. A tendency to get stuck in the body by looking like something the body normally uses. Strontium-90 mimics calcium. Iodine is iodine.

I've seen potassium iodide in mail order catalogs.

Comment Hotline numbers and other resources (Score 4, Informative) 381

US: 1-800-273-8255 is a 24/7 suicide prevention hotline, which also advises people dealing with a suicidal loved one or friend.

For US active duty military and veterans:
Veteran's Crisis Line:
Press 1
or text 838255

confidential chat available at:

Specifically for support of trans* people, has a US hotline number +18775658860 and a Canadian toll-free number +18773306366.

For LGBT teenagers and young adults, http://www.thetrevorproject.or.... They also have a hotline number, 866-488-7386.

If you're a friend or bystander, these are relevant.
Suicide threats on social media:
If you're in the US this is a guide to reaching emergency services outside your own area:
Immediate steps you can take:

Comment This isn't a victory for Behring-Breivik. (Score 3, Insightful) 491

Someone once pointed out that hoping a rapist gets raped in prison isn't a victory for his victim(s), because it somehow gives him what he had coming to him, but it's actually a victory for rape and violence. I wish I could remember who said that, because they are right. The score doesn't go Rapist: 1 World: 1. It goes Rape: 2.

What this man did is unspeakable, and he absolutely deserves to spend the rest of his life in prison. If he needs to be kept away from other prisoners as a safety issue, there are ways to do that without keeping him in solitary confinement, which has been shown conclusively to be profoundly cruel and harmful.

Putting him in solitary confinement, as a punitive measure, is not a victory for the good people in the world. It's a victory for inhumane treatment of human beings. This ruling is, in my opinion, very good and very strong for human rights, *precisely* because it was brought by such a despicable and horrible person. It affirms that all of us have basic human rights, even the absolute worst of us on this planet.

Comment Re:Justice (Score 2) 99

That depends on whose version of the incident response costs is true.

The defense as I understand it says it was a matter of clicking revert and took less time than scrubbing out graffiti.

The prosecution claims the cost to the victim was 333 hours. On the other hand they included some response work to different incidents for which he had not been on trial.

Comment Re:I fail to see the problem here (Score 1) 93

Burdell has pointed out the real story.

"The search warrant seeks to have Microsoft â" which owns Skype â" provide the government with logs and the content of conversations and written messages made on Ciccoloâ(TM)s account, as well as passwords."

If Microsoft is in fact recording the content of Skype conversations, that really is news for nerds.

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