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Comment Re:Males want to be Alpha Males. (Score 1) 823

I agree with much of your comment, but I am a mite frustrated with the assumed gender differences. Granted, there are populations of male nerds who have less than stellar reputations for good reason, but nerd arrogance isn't an exclusively male tendency. I've seen it in women, and as a female nerd I hereby assert and confess that I had more than my share of nerd arrogance once upon a time, especially as a computer science undergraduate. Even now I think back on the abusive ways I communicated and the walls I inadvertently put up that blocked genuine collaboration and collegiality, and I wince. 12 years later, I've worked long and hard on cultivating compassion and humility in my personality and have seen incalculably valuable return on that investment.

There may well be a positive correlation between nerd arrogance and what emerges as "male" from socialized (and unfortunately binary) gender differences, but in my opinion there is utterly insufficient data to confirm that statistically, so I'd prefer to stick with the "attitude of arrogance and superiority among nerds" as the question at hand instead of speculating about the gender correlation. In fact, your own anecdote undercuts your speculation by explicitly attributing the difference between computer science and jazz to the nature of the field instead of the gender ratio:

Jazz Majors were predominantly male too. However, due to the nature of Jazz where the band works as a team, there is less arrogance

The reason I say that there is insufficient data to confidently correlate gender and nerd arrogance is that there are simply too few women in the field, and given the nature of the field, those women who do enter it have already gone through an element of pre-selection. (Note: so have the men in the field.) If the population were considerably more diverse and if the field didn't have an earned reputation as having gender accessibility issues, then I would consider speculating about gender. Until then, it makes more sense to leave it to personality and socialized behaviour.

What do you think?

Comment The obstacle is the lack of a good plan. (Score 1) 601

Despite fully intending to for several years, I haven't actually sat down and devised a coherent plan for key management including an authoritative physical store for the private keys (a problem because in any given day I use 4+ computers and not one of them accesses my email directly), revocation certificates, choosing a reliable keyserver, and choosing a web-based way to distribute my public key to anyone so inclined.

To make matters worse, I'm still in a state of severe digital identity flux (SDIF henceforth). I've been in SDIF for a number of years, and the problem is compounded by the fact that all the commonly used and centralized "identity authorities" (self-styled) are corporate and make me acutely uncomfortable. Until I resolve SDIF and establish the requisite collection of identities, boundaries to each, and reputations, I feel as though what digital assets I have aren't worth the trouble, especially if it's going to be temporary. I don't want to go to all the trouble of planning things (as per paragraph #1) only to then have to revoke and re-issue everything.

Comment A model for well moderated discourse (Score 2) 1521

Slashdot has been a significant part of the formation of my identity in terms of interest, exploring diverse issues, and exposure to technologies that I wouldn't otherwise have encountered. I thank you, Rob, for everything you've done to create and cultivate this community.

I've been thinking more about Slashdot recently because of my involvement in "Nym-Wars". In at least one place Slashdot was cited as a stellar example of the civility and quality that can be fostered in a community that functions primarily pseudonymously, but also allows anonymity (two things I very much are about). The moderation system in place here is complex (I myself still find it a little confusing) but there is no question that it works. Slashdot is one of the few places where I consider the comments on an article as much (often more) worth reading as the article itself. Obviously my appreciation for this applies to the whole Slashdot community, but I am posting this specifically in recognition of CmdrTaco's influence in shaping the community.

Rob, may everything else you do in the years to come be as interesting and fruitful as your work here! Community and communication are essential, amazing things, and I'm sure your contributions to the world at large are far from over.

Comment The article started Face, how hard are guestures? (Score 1) 110

I would have thought gesture recognition would be relatively easy just moment the position of hands, which should be the nearest object. But its taking some time. Certainly having a computer recognise basic hand movements and running scripts accordingly would be get timesaver. On the subject, when will windows get a proper scripting language, like Rexx was on OS2 and amiga?


Computer Vision Feed @ Feed Distiller

Comment Re:Uh huh, terrororists (Score 1) 367

No internet means problems with the entire economy, transport, etc. Look at what happened with that overseas cable cut lately.

Nobody shuts down the internet without a very, very, very good reason and that reason being hostile threats and not leaked documents from WikiLeaks.

The NSA can just DDOS WikiLeaks to death if it wants to already. Who's gonna stop them? The Government? Lol.

Comment Re:There is an easy fix (Score 0) 367

Unless there is an extreme state of emergency and the FCC declares that the amateur radio bands are needed for emergency communications, then the FCC cannot stop transmission on the amateur bands. Even if they revoke a license, they cannot actually stop transmission over those bands. A state can revoke a citizen's drivers license, but it cannot actually suspends the citizen's ability to drive. Sure, they can arrest the citizen for driving on a suspended license, but they cannot delete the skill the driver has, nor their actual freedom of movement(prior to arrest). The best the FCC could do is try and shutdown a repeater, but even that would be an exercise in futility.

I do know about the license requirement for the GMRS equipment, but you just mail in a fee to obtain the license. You do not have to take a test, which is a requirement for Amateur(Ham) radios licenses. I believe the license requirements on GMRS is outdated and rather useless. I would rather not spend $80 to $90 USD on a license for GMRS access and spend far less to obtain a Technician Class Amateur Radio license and have far greater capabilities.

You study for about a day, maybe two, and you can start communicating with people all over the world. You also obtain a hands-on education in electronics, RF technology, and a whole host of other worth-while skills.

Comment Re:A work lost versus a work preserved... (Score 2, Insightful) 218

It most certainly is yours. What isn't yours are the experiences of that people who listen to it, what importance the culture attaches to it, etc.

What's the difference between a chair that I build in my workshop, a photograph that I take or an essay that I write? (assuming that I build good chairs, take good pictures and write good essays) There is no difference. I created them, I own them. I may choose to sell them, give them away, lock them in my home unused or run them through a wood chipper. I fail to see what the huge debate over copyright is. If someone creates something, it should be up to them what to do with it. Period. What people want or what is good for society should have no bearing on it. If my neighbor has a bad back and only my chair is will help him, should I be forced to sell it to them or even give it to them after an arbitrary period of time of sitting in my living room unused? I think not. Should I want to help and be a good neighbor? Yes. Should the law enable him to just come take it because his need is greater? No.

I'm becoming increasingly concerned that individual's rights are being eroded. If I want to lock my works away I should be able to. I should have the right to be a douch bag.

Comment Re:Perspective anyone? (Score 3, Insightful) 184

I agree and also was disappointed that the second part of the interview was conducted the way it was. I noticed in one of the early comments to the second part that the interviewer admits to not being a professional journalist, and that he is human and his emotions got the best of him. That alleviated my disappointment a little... but it is still a shame that this opportunity was lost. It would be interesting if "John" has the courage to contact another organization that might be willing to interview him.

Comment Re:Articles needlessly split over multiple pages (Score 1) 507

Hear, hear! It's a great way to antagonize one's readers, on par with using Comic Sans or a Blackletter typeface for an academic paper and expecting the grader to read it charitably.

I've discovered that the "print" view almost always puts everything onto one page (and in a much cleaner and more readable format!), but there are still a few ridiculous holdouts that make even the print view span multiple pages. At that point, I give up and stop reading.

Comment Only 3, but the "same language" not applicable (Score 1) 958

I live in Canada, have visited (in order) England, Georgia (on the Black Sea), the United States. Yes, I can speak English in two of those, but Georgia is a whole different animal. I'm glad I was with people who spoke Russian (though not Georgian) because otherwise I would have been out of luck. I loved it there and will go back after I learn Russian.

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