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Comment Re:eating less (Score 1, Interesting) 256

You're missing the point. This is about explaining why the same amount of food (or energy) intake affects people differently. Research into metabolic syndrome has shown that there is no simple relation: eat less -> lose weight -> get healthy. Once you know what influences weight gain or loss, given a certain amount of food intake you can adjust for other parameters.

Absolute nonsense. From the Sunday Morning Herald summary (I don't have a Nature subscription):

They found that the gut microbiomes of the mice who lost weight were altered, and that these changes remained in place for many months and contributed to rapid and excessive weight gain if the mice were given high-fat diets again.

So the mice gained weight when they were fed a crap diet. And, quelle surprise, when human porkers give up their short-lived attempts to stick to a Mediterranean diet and shove their noses back in the McDonald's trough, they pile back on the pounds.

Neither article says that the mice had a calorie-controlled diet. It seem far more likely that the gut microbiome changes have an impact on appetite.

Comment Re:Interesting, Dave Chappelle. (Score 1) 552

In the UK, several Labour politicians have been embarrassed by phone footage of speeches given to groups of far left activists. For example, the shadow chancellor was recently revealed as celebrating the Great Recession in 2008 as something that he had been waiting years for in his fight to overthrow capitalism. And phone footage of Momentum meetings has shown activists scheming to have moderate politicians deselected (essentially removed from office for those not familiar with UK politics). There has definitely been a backlash in the polls against these revelations.

None of which is true.

It's all true.

The Momentum footage appeared on a Channel 4 Dispatches documentary. I've viewed it myself. Similar evidence was shown on a BBC1 Panorama report. Again, I've viewed it myself. The footage of the shadow chancellor was highlighted by the Daily Telegraph and it's also on YouTube. Once more, I've viewed it myself.

Your denial of reality demonstrates why video evidence is so important if the public is to know the truth.

Comment Re:Interesting, Dave Chappelle. (Score 1) 552

to make racially insensitive remarks or to heap insults on some random basket of deplorables with no threat of being exposed during his next election campaign.

You comment as if such things would adversely affect a politician's election campaign. That doesn't seem to always be the case.

I'm not in the US, but my understanding from afar is that Hillary's 'deplorables' gaffe was accompanied by a measurable swing toward Trump. Then Trump's own gaffes come to prominence...

In the UK, several Labour politicians have been embarrassed by phone footage of speeches given to groups of far left activists. For example, the shadow chancellor was recently revealed as celebrating the Great Recession in 2008 as something that he had been waiting years for in his fight to overthrow capitalism. And phone footage of Momentum meetings has shown activists scheming to have moderate politicians deselected (essentially removed from office for those not familiar with UK politics). There has definitely been a backlash in the polls against these revelations.

So, yes, election campaigns can definitely be affected by mobile phone footage.

Comment Re:Interesting, Dave Chappelle. (Score 4, Interesting) 552

One great benefit of the smartphone era is that we can easily find out when two-faced, dissembling politicians attempt to say things in private lectures that conflict with their publicly stated policy positions.

So let's imagine a typical fundraising dinner in Dave Chappelle's dystopian future. A keynote speech will be given by a prominent politician, and a comedian will lighten the mood with a short gig between dessert and the auction. The comedian insists that his intellectual property is protected by Yondr, so the politician is free to promise unpublicised tax-breaks for his loyal supporters, to make racially insensitive remarks or to heap insults on some random basket of deplorables with no threat of being exposed during his next election campaign.

I can imagine a world where no self-respecting politician will give a speech without the comfort of an accompanying comedian who conveniently insists on 'protection'. This is not good for democracy.

Comment Re: Star Office (Score 3, Informative) 103

Has libreoffice fixed the slow load times?

Just tested: 1 second for LibreOffice Writer cold (ie first time opened since turning on laptop). Hardware: Macbook Retine Pro 13"; Software: Ubuntu Gnome with LibreOffice 5.1.4.2 installed directly from repositories. Subsequent starts of LibreOffice are effectively instantaneous.

Based on experience with my rather more powerful work laptop, that's considerably faster than MS Office.

Comment Re:Remember, it's because people aren't marrying (Score 1, Troll) 531

...harmless urges...

At the risk of sounding like a far-out social conservative crossed with a radical feminist, do you have any evidence to support your assertion that viewing porn satisfies a 'harmless urge'?

It is widely claimed that the subjects of pornography are typically vulnerable girls, and that the profits pass largely into the hands of powerful middle-men. It is also widely claimed that porn stars often struggle to maintain a happy family life off-screen, and that their economic prospects are bleak once their breasts begin to sag or they suffer scarring from a caesarian section. Some people claim that porn stars are discouraged from using condoms and are particularly likely to suffer unwanted pregnancies or life-threatening sexually transmitted disease.

I don't know if these claims are true, although they certainly sound plausible. If they are true, viewing pornography is no more a harmless urge than the 'harmless' urge once felt by cotton farmers to maximise their profits through the purchase of slaves.

Unfortunately, simply asserting that something is 'harmless' doesn't actually make it so. It is entirely plausible that your appetite for the consumption of porn leads to human misery and disease at the other end of an https connectiion.

Comment Viewers hate political correctness (Score 4, Insightful) 251

I never watch Top Gear. It's not my kind of thing. But I always had a sneaking admiration for the ability of Jeremy Clarkson, the wildly popular former host, to retain his job whilst thumbing his nose at everything the politically correct thought-police hold dear. When they finally find an excuse to sack Clarkson, the cheering and whooping from Broadcasting House could be heard all over the British Isles.

I always imagined that a politically correct replacement show would tank badly with its core demographic of non-metropolitan blokes. Viewers hate being told what to think, and I'm delighted to see they've rebelled in huge numbers.

Comment Re: Wow. (Score 2) 470

The problem is the label doesn't help consumers make informed decisions, it just helps them make irrational ones.

Maybe so. But people should be free to make irrational decisions.

Vitamin pills, homeopathy and feng shui are just a few examples of irrational things that lead people to spend their money unwisely. In a free society, that's just part of life's rich tapestry.

If a sufficiently significant proportion of the population wants labels, they should have labels. Your definition of irrationality is irrelevant.

Comment Re:cost reduction (Score 1) 595

IOW you want a waterproof phone with lots of holes in it.

What's the problem people, if you have a 5 bucks wired headphone you don't want to ditch for an 800$ phone, just don't buy it!

Garmin makes waterproof watches and bike computers with electrical connectors. Even the touch screens work when they're wet.

No-one minds replacing £3 headphones unless the cheapest alternative is £50. But no-one wants to replace their existing high-end headphones.

And I definitely don't want to be forced to use expensive headphones when I'm cycling. Sweat, rain, mud and road grime mean that I regularly chuck out my cycling headphones. I don't care about sound quality because I'm breathing too hard, so cheap is good. Besides, cheap headphones tend to allow traffic noise through, which helps to keep me alive.

And I want plenty of choice for my running headphones - a narrow range from one lender is unlikely to find something that hits the sweet spot between comfort and staying in place when I'm doing interval training.

Comment Re: cost reduction (Score 1) 595

Sony has phones and tablets that are thinner than iProducts and waterproof

Oh? Google doesn't seem to find any for me. Nor does Carphone Warehouse's website. For reference, the iPhone 6 is 6.9mm and the 6S is 7.1mm.

Besides, Sony says that its phones have only been tested underwater in standby mode. You can't actually use them when they're wet. Seawater is a no-no, too.

Waterproof phones have a long way to go before you can treat them with the same casual disregard as a waterproof watch.

Comment Re: cost reduction (Score 1) 595

I said that a thin, waterproof phone is highly desirable. The current iPhone is slimmer than the waterproof Samsung models, and dropping the headphone jack would presumably allow it to be thinner still.

I'd be willing to shove a £2 adapter on my headphones if it shaved a millimeter off my phone. Most things in life are a compromise, and that's one that wouldn't trouble me in the slightest.

Comment Re:cost reduction (Score 4, Interesting) 595

You're forgetting they'd most likely include a lightening port to 3.5mm dongle, which would cost more than the 3.5mm jack in the phone.

If they simply change the socket shape to something smaller and more waterproof, I'm good with that. I can put a cheap and light adapter onto all of my existing headphones and life will continue unchanged. A thin, waterproof phone is highly desirable - I once killed a high-end phone by falling into a river on my mountain bike, and I hate the faff of having to keep my phone in a waterproof case when I'm hiking or out on my road bike in showery weather (it always rains in Wales!).

But if they require an expensive adapter (active electronics or royalties), that's a big problem. I guess I'm not alone in using multiple headphones with my phone. I have good quality headphones at home and in the office, cheap disposable in-ear phones for cycling, sports headphones for running, a lightweight spare set that I keep in my laptop bag for travelling, etc. I don't mind buying a £2 adapter for each of these, but I don't fancy buying multiple £20 adapters, and I'm certainly not willing to carry an adapter with me just in case I need to use it.

Comment Re: It's simple (Score 1) 371

It maybe a technicality, but the terms of service for those websites are unlikely to be regarded as a contract under UK law. We require consideration to pass from both parties before a contract is valid, and it's hard to see what co side ration is given by a user of a free website.

That's not to say that terms of service have no legal force, but they're very unlikely to be subject to the law of contract.

Comment Re: It's simple (Score -1, Flamebait) 371

So here's the issue.

Landlords face real financial costs from tenants who don't pay their rent, who damage the rental property, or who are a problem to their neighbours. The vast majority of well behaved tenants subsidise the bad guys.

If you're a decent tenant and you can demonstrate that you're unlikely to cause problems to the landlord, you should be able to procure higher quality housing, have more choice of properties, enjoy lower costs or maybe a mixture of all three. If you are unable or unwilling to demonstrate good character, you'll have to continue to subsidise the bad guys.

There's a price to pay for privacy. Some people will pay it - and it's not your or my right to cast moral judgement on their decision.

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