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Comment Re:f.lux (Score 2, Insightful) 351

Isn't this a solution to a completely different problem? The issue here is not with ambient light while you're trying to sleep, but rather the bright lights shone into your eyes by various appliances while you're using them messing with your body clock.

f.lux attempts to deal with this by altering the colour temperature of your monitors. Another way might be to simply turn your monitor's brightness down.

Comment Re:Bubby? Is that you? (Score 1) 859

For example, you can go to jail for denying the holocaust happened...

Isnt it odd that a society that places such value on avoiding historical lies would be pushing to censor history in this case?

I would instead say that german law believes that protecting the identities of reformed criminals provides the greater net benefit to society by allowing them to reintegrate, and that german law believes that preserving the memory of the holocaust will provide the greater net benefit to society by helping to prevent the resurgence of nazism.

Comment Re:Bubby? Is that you? (Score 5, Insightful) 859

This is a cultural difference. In America you value freedom of speech above many other rights, including privacy. In Germany, it is the other way around - Germans value privacy greatly, but do not necessarily think everyone should always be allowed to speak their mind. For example, you can go to jail for denying the holocaust happened... but on the other hand Privacy International acknowledges german privacy safeguards while naming the united states an endemic surveillance society. (source. It seems even Germany is slipping on PI's scales these days...)

They are private facts. The people who hold that information have always been, and will always be, contractually and legally obliged to keep those facts private.
  The identity of the murderers isn't just a fact, it's a public fact, part of the public record, established in a public trial.

The main facts remain the same, only the names will be expunged from public access. I would say this is because, once freed, criminals regain a lot of their rights to privacy.

The question is whether government has the right to retroactively rewrite public databases, public records, and public facts. The only possible answer is a resounding "no". Fascist states, dictatorships, and communist states rewrite history; democracies do not.

Oh, you can't just denounce everyone who doesn't share to the your particular viewpoint of an ideal democracy as fascist! Different cultures have different needs. Both viewpoints are trying to achieve an ideal but falling short as realistic governments are bound to.

Anyway, it's not altering history, it's expunging names from the public record to protect people. It's not like they're writing someone else's name into the history books.

This is a tough question.

No, it really isn't

It's just that your particular value system only permits one possible answer, but not everyone shares that system precisely. Disagree if you must, but at the very least you have to agree that in Germany, the german people should be allowed to make their laws as they see fit. Now, American law disagrees with German law. How then do you approach such an international thing as wikipedia? You don't think this is a tough question? The obvious answers all leave a lot to be desired.

Comment Re:how do you test it? (Score 1) 329

Only if you inject someone else. Dr Barry Marshal jointly won the Nobel prize for Medicine in no small part for infecting himself with Helicobacter pylori. Different league of disease, true, but infecting someone isn't necessarily out of the question. I wouldn't be at all surprised if the researcher that proves the effectiveness of this vaccine by injecting themselves with HIV also won a nobel prize, given how many people die from AIDS.

Comment Regarding oh-shit-that's-a-big-number (Score 1) 236

ok, someone needs to check my math and logic because I'm basically asleep at the moment, but:

2^100.5 = 1.8e30
2^119 = 664613997892457936451903530140172288 = 6.6x10^35

In atoms:
Avogadro's number is 6x10^23.
1 mole of iron contains 6x10^23 Fe atoms, and has a mass of 55 grams. So, 2^119 atoms are 2^119/6^23 = 1e12 moles. This means that 2^119 atoms of iron would have a mass of 55 megatonnes. (1 tonne = 10^6g), which is (very roughly) the mass of a solid cube of iron 200 meters to the edge.
So, if you take a 200 m cube of iron, the number of atoms in that will be about 2^119. Which is pretty big.

The same math for 2^100.5 makes it roughly equal to the number of atoms in a cube of iron only 3 m across.

Compare that, though, to 2^256:
2^256 = 115792089237316195423570985008687907853269984665640564039457584007913129639936 = 10^77.

This is equal to the number of atoms in a cube of iron one light year (!) across.

So, from 2^256 to 2^119 and then to 2^100.5 are massive steps. But then again, bear in mind that 2^100.5 = 1.8x10^30 is still massive, so no worries as yet.

Unless I made a mistake. My formula from number of atoms to cube size is: ( numberOfAtoms/ (6e23 atoms per mole) * (55 g per mole) / (8 g per cubic cm) ) ^ (1/3). Output in cm.

Comment Re:Indefinitely (Score 1) 575

Brain Cells Found to Regenerate (via Wikipedia)
.. but you're right, I guess brain cells aren't as subject to the normal die-and-replace process that (I'm assuming) takes place in the rest of the body. Still, my point was just that if you were to replace a brain cell with a new one, I don't think your mind would be different, as long as the pattern of the mind remained the same. Thanks for catching that though.

Comment Re:Science solves science's problems? (Score 1) 182

So science only does good, not evil?

I didn't say that. Science doesn't "do" good or evil. Science doesn't act. See first paragraph that you quoted. I also never claimed that the knowledge attained scientifically has only been used in good ways, only that we're ahead. See the paragraph you cut out using ellipses.

Be careful who you talk about evil or who is a hypocrite here.

It is hypocrisy to condemn a process while reaping the benefits of it. That's almost the definition of hypocrisy. I didn't say anyone was evil. Disrespectful, perhaps - but isn't the methodology that has allowed us to achieve our modern way of life worthy of some respect?

That is all.


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