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Submission + - How Napoleon became a Spaniard: algorithms rewriting history

brasselv writes: Here's an interesting story on how, with enough Social Media likes, history can be rewritten, and Napoleon can become a Spaniard

What can be done, before Social Media's algorithms dooms us all in an Ocean of Post-Truth?

One simple proposal is in the linked article, and may have enormous potential:
Give academic sources a preferential treatment in the social algorithms which decide what people see the most.

(Don't we have mandatory schooling?
Such simple tweak may now be just as important as mandatory schooling.)

What do Slashdotters think?

Submission + - Is it time to do away with 'feminism'? (

An anonymous reader writes: The problem with the word feminism is that it has grown to signify both a very worthy ideal, and at the same time a tribal affiliation that appears to demand to choose sides in the most trivial battles usually fought online.

Honestly, I think the word 'feminist' is doomed, as a banner.

I think it’s doomed because i can’t find any argument or any discussion that would be more useful when happening under the “feminism” banner, as opposed to the same discussion happening without such a banner. Therefore, it seems to me that if you are still using the banner, then you are guilty of caring more about the banner itself than about advancing the actual ideal of equal opportunities.

Here's a proposal.

Comment Re: Needs to stop (Score 1) 500

There are probably ways to make the electoral system better - and there are almost certainly ways to screw up royally.

After Al Gore lost the 2000 election (and yes, he really did lose, The New York Times did an in-depth analysis after the election of votes cast, showing al Gore lost fair and square), Democrats ran around with their hair on fire, arguing that we MUST roll out, expensive, vulnerable, and frail electronic voting ASAP to avoid another 'uncertain' election outcome.

Fast-forward 16 years, now Democrats are running around with their hair on fire, insisting that THE RUSSIANS are going to upset the coming election, and the only solution is for DHS to provide 'oversight' in all elections this November 'just in case' those pesky Russians try anything.

The sitting party wants the ability to second-guess every state election, presumably with the ability to invalidate results they find 'suspect' - sounds great, doesn't it?

How does this relate with the opportunity, or not, to have a debate on the overall electoral system? No irony, just an open question.
The sitting party, either one, is sitting because it has been voted.
Am I missing your point entirely?

Comment Re: Needs to stop (Score 1) 500

I hear you,
but the the first thing you want is a mainstream debate on IF, and HOW, the electoral system can be made better.

[Mainstream means: people get stuff about it on their facebook feed, see the topic on the opinion page of their favorite newspaper, hear about it on TV etc. This is currently not happening. ]

There are probably ways to make the electoral system better - and there are almost certainly ways to screw up royally.

Let's face it: With all the faults you may find, the current system has historically served the U.S. people well. Some reforms are probably a good idea, but we better come up with something really, really smart.

Comment Re: Obligatory.. (Score 1) 235

God is quite an elusive idea - but I do like very much the idea of loving your neighbor!

But if really boils down to that, why carrying forward all the baggage that can be summarized in that one wise and precious sentence?
Why loading yourself with the need to explain away everything else, when you could just choose any modern philosopher (say, Peter Singer) that says essentially the same thing, but without the references to goats, stoning and the like? It appears on the face of it an enormous effort and rather a waste of energy. What am I missing?

Comment Re: Obligatory.. (Score 1) 235

thanks for your answer, I mean it!
one thing I don't understand is the following - maybe you can help (no irony)

the new testament is not getting into details on topics that many Christians seem to care about. topics like human sexuality, origins of the cosmos, laws of nature, and more.
when many Christians are looking for answers on such topics, they tend to refer to the old testament. however, when such answers appear unpalatable in the old testament (see e. g. stoning), they use the argument that the new testament has supeseded those things.

is it a fair reading? how do you know when something is superseded and when?

Comment Re: Older = Better (Score 1) 235

if you tried living in a cave, fighting bears with bare hands, surviving the decimation of your tribe by a neighbor tribe, to then die at age 25 of a small infection, all the while believing that the god of blood and thunder rules the forest, and moves the sun, his slave and concubine through the sky... ... you would have a different opinion.

Comment Re: With the way the world is... (Score 1) 284

not sure, but maybe he's trying to say that math *may* not be the universal language of all the possible universes, but just a result of how out particular simulated universe is organized.
i certainly can't imagine how a universe with non mathematical laws would be like; I suspect nobody does. It could, however, just be a distortion field of our point of view, I. E. a lack of perspective. I also can't imagine a quantum world, but I accept its because I didn't evolve in one (ok, I did, but you know what I mean)

Comment Re: Travelling at 20% of the speed of light (Score 2) 218

"The biggest difficulty is transmitting useful data back to Earth as there's going to be very little power available."

wouldn't be possible to send many of those at regular intervals on the same path, and use the them as a line of breadcrumb repeaters of sorts?

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