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Comment Re:Australian here (Score 1) 505

The above is a great example of a straw man argument. A valid point that has nothing to do with the argument being made. I'm not arguing about the absolute power. I'm arguing about it's abuse. The comment from the border official is an abuse of her power. She made a comment that I did not agree with but was in no position to respond to.

If you want to kill your tourism industry this is how to do it.

Comment Australian here (Score 3, Insightful) 505

I was dismayed the last time I visited the United States, when after the indignity of being treated like a criminal by having my fingerprints taken for the first time, the border official said to me, "Now that wasn't such a big deal was it". Border officials have absolute power. Being on business, I was in no position to offer an alternative opinion and run the risk of being sent home.

Your tourism industry will be suffering. I stopped travelling for pleasure to the US long ago. If I should visit Canada for a holiday you can be sure I will travel via Auckland or Asia and not LA.

Fuck you guys, I'm tired of your shit.

Comment Obviously aliens (Score 1) 83

Once upon a time the human race used to reason along the following lines: "I don't understand, therefore it must be a god, the devil or evil spirits".

This explanation having gradually fallen into disrepute, now a large portion of the human race seems to reason: "I don't understand, therefore it must be aliens".

No doubt an explanation will be found one day.

Comment Unless you are in the country, stay in bed (Score 1) 62

A meteor shower is not a meteor storm. Meteor showers get way more media attention than they deserve.

Astronomically speaking there are far more exciting things to do with your time that are more convenient. Borrow a decent telescope for a month.

I for one have no desire to get out of bed at the time I'm most sleepy, travel from my big city to somewhere where the night sky is half way decent, to see three meteors a minute, each of which is only in the sky for a few seconds, if I am lucky. That's an average of rather less than 1 meteor in the sky at any one time.

Comment "wikipedia is not censored" is a conceit (Score 3, Interesting) 176

Quoting directly from "Content will be removed if it is judged to violate Wikipedia policies (especially those on biographies of living persons and neutral point of view) or the laws of the United States".

In fact wikipedia is not censored according to the laws of China, but it is censored according to the laws of United States. Naturally this doesn't appeal to the Chinese government when it's available to Chinese citizens. No doubt if it wasn't censored according to the laws of United States then this wouldn't appeal to the United States government (or other governments with similar views to the US).

Comment Re:GMT / UTC ? (Score 1) 95

This is a good question. Here's the answer. UTC is never a daylight saving time. With UTC you don't have to be aware of the daylight saving time rules of a foreign country. You only have to be aware of when your own time zone goes on and off daylight saving. It does make it simpler to figure out mentally.

This is particularly important for opposite hemisphere countries, which go on and off daylight savings time at roughly opposite times instead of roughly the same time.

Many countries do change their daylight savings time rules every now and again, for example the US as recently as 2007:

Nobody wants to keep up with the changes to all the daylight savings regimes of all the countries in the world. Very often people do not take the trouble to say whether a time is a daylight saving time or a standard time. The reader first has to figure that out.

I don't point the finger at slashdot because it is an American site. However quoting some particular countries time in an international forum is inconsiderate, ignorant or imperialistic. Pick one or more.

Comment Re:Thai music is heptatonic (Score 1) 111

Most western musical scales divide the octave into seven intervals, not eight: C-D, D-E, E-F, F-G, G-A, A-B and B-C for the C major scale. Those seven intervals are not all the same. Your reference claims that the Thai seven intervals are near enough to being all the same. That is a huge difference between them.

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