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Comment Re:Because you say so? (Score 1) 202

I actually was accused of sexual harassment in my workplace decades ago. My professional and social encouragement to a new female engineer who didn't speak English as a native language was misinterpreted by a manager who was sensitive to harassment issues. It took direct testimony by several other junior engineers in other work groups with whom I collaborated to clear the charge, which had been encouraged by that manager directly to the new employee. It took roughly a decade to re-establish a good relationship with that employee due to the resulting embarrassment, including making friends with their spouse and their child.

Comment Re:As usual, more detail needed (Score 1) 117

Generally speaking you should never, ever change your behavior based on the results of a single study -- even a controlled, double-blind study, much less an epidemiological survey. You should wait for a comprehensive literature review paper in a high-impact peer reviewed journal before you consider a result reliable.

That said, correlation is still quite valuable -- to researchers. Science doesn't have the resources to come up with quick, definitive answers on a question like this, involving a complex system that is expensive and ethically tricky to monkey with. So science spends a lot of time doing safer, more affordable stuff like looking for epidemiological correlations, until it can justify spending a lot of rare research dollars on something more probative. And those dollars are about to get a lot rarer too.

Comment Re:Similar (Score 1) 187

Kiribati is going underwater. Does anyone else care? *sigh*

I could rob you and beat you to pulp. Would anyone else care? The answer is that wise people would care, because they'll know if I get away with that I'll be getting away with a lot more.

Same with climate change. Yes, Kiribati may disappear. But the Kiribatians aren't the only people who will pay; in fact most people in the world will end up paying. The way this works is that we all get some up front economic benefit from unregulated carbon emissions and we all pay for the consequences later, but the trick is that the benefits and costs aren't spread uniformly. Some people make a killing on cheap fossil fuel and then can move the bulk of the resulting assets out of the way of climate change. The worst hit are those whose wealth is in land -- the Kiribatians obviously, but also farmers in places which become unsupportably arid.

Comment Re: Oh well (Score 1) 187

I don't think it's greed. I think it's wishful thinking.

And it absolutely would be great if there were no downsides to burning all the fossil fuels we can lay our hands on. Most people on this site are too young to remember the smog we had in the 1960s and 1970s; they're imprinted on a time when gas was cheap, air was clean, and anthropogenic climate change was (as far as the general public was concerned) undreamt of. Who wouldn't want that to be true?

Comment Re:Telephone Game: Racist Edition (Score 1) 188

And those people should be coming to America because?

Possibly the same reason you are in America, whatever that may be. People gotta be somewhere, and America (in spite of our embarrassing fuckwittery) has a lot of great things going for it. I realize it's subjective and we all have different opinions, but it's not unreasonable for people to prefer America. (And yes, it's not unreasonable for someone to prefer somewhere else instead.) We really do have our attractions. If you don't think those attractions make us the right choice for you (or someone else), that's fine, but if you don't think they exist then you're too dumb to be talking to.

If you can't think of a reason for choosing America, go ahead and leave. Plenty of people will be happy to take your place. Everyone can be a winner, even you.

Comment Re:I am very skeptical. (Score 1) 99

Unless, of course, the report assumes that anything running Lollipop or older is not recently patched, which seems like a reasonable assumption.

According to Google, 65.9% of users are on Lollipop or older. That means 29% of up-to-date Androids would have to come from 34.1% of users, or that 85% of Marshmallow and Nougat users are fully patched. I'm skeptical.

Also, nearly half of Android users are using an OS at least 2.5 years old. :-/ Compare with 79% of iOS users on a 6 month old OS, and 95% of iOS users on an OS less than 1.5 years old.

Submission + - SPAM: Quicken Bill Pay is No Longer Safe to Use 1

Bruce Perens writes: I don't usually make security calls, but when a company makes egregious and really clueless security mistakes, it's often the case that the only way to attract their attention and get the issue fixed is to publicize it. This one is with Quicken Bill Pay, a product of Metavante (not Intuit). It's from personal observation rather than an expert witness case, and the company has been unresponsive through their customer support channel.
Link to Original Source

Comment Re:Huh? I use these all the time. (Score 1) 258

This gets down to something that used to be a common UI design principle before software became so feature-ful it became impractical: manifest interface.

The idea of a manifest interface (which also is a principle in language and API design) is that if the software has a capability you should be able to see it. You shouldn't have to root around to stumble upon it. Tabs follow this principle; there's enough visual and behavioral cues to suggest that you need to click on a tab. The little "x" in the tab also follows this principle.

But context menus you access by right-clicking break this rule, which means that there may be millions of people laboriously clicking on "x" after "x", unaware that they can make all the extraneous tabs in their browser disappear with just two clicks.

This, by the way, is why Macintoshes were designed with one button on the mouse. But even Mac UI designers couldn't get by with just single and double-click, so you have option-click too, bit by in large you could operate most programs without it.

Anyhow, to make sure people know about this kind of feature, your program is going to have to watch their behavior and suggest they try right clicking. But that way lies Clippy...

Comment Re:Ummmm..... (Score 1) 412

The claim is that if we exist in a reality that can be simulated accurately, it is pure hubris to assume that we are the top tier attempting to perform such a simulation.

I think it's funny how you people call it "hubris" whenever other people stay within the limits of what they know. You sound just like the people who are sure there are intelligent aliens on other planets somewhere out in the mind-boggling vastness of the universe. The rest of us say "I don't know," but you say you know (despite utter lack of evidence) and accuse us of hubris.

I don't think that word means what you think it means.

Comment Re: Better Idea (Score 5, Interesting) 150

All planets are within the heliosphere, the region where the solar wind is not countered by interstellar medium. It does cause a very slight amount of orbital decay, but it's much closer to a vacuum than can be easily obtained on Earth. It was very exciting for some of us when Voyager left the heliosphere in 2012 and was _still working_.

Comment Abandoning Time-Worn Processes Leads to Atrophy (Score 5, Insightful) 158

Scientists determined that those people who made use of machine washing rather than hand washing had diminished hand strength and neurological motor communication necessary for fine motor control. Seamstresses who bought thread rather than using the spinning jenny were similarly impaired. But worst off were teamsters who used the internal combustion trucks rather than teams of horses and used forklifts and other mechanical devices rather than loading their vehicles by hand. Their overall body strength was much reduced.

Comment Re:Making NASA Great Again (Score 5, Informative) 307

Actually the Wikipedia article on the National Aeronautics and Space Act has an interesting list of the legislation's priorities, starting with priority #1:

The expansion of human knowledge of phenomena in the atmosphere and space;

Historically speaking the act, which was signed into law in July of 1958, was a reaction to the "Sputnik Crisis" created by the Soviet launch of an artificial satellite eight months earlier in October of 1957 -- an act which filled Americans with awe and a little dread, knowing that a Soviet device was passing overhead every 96 minutes.

So arguably NASA was founded to achieve preeminence in Earth orbit, not necessarily manned space exploration, which isn't mentioned at all in the legislation. Yuri Gagarin's Vostok 1 flight was still three years in the future, and JFKs Rice Moon Speech followed a year and a half after that. That speech is well worth watching, by the way, if all you've ever seen is the "We choose to go to the moon" line.

Manned exploration of the outer solar system wasn't really what the founding of NASA was all about; in fact manned spaceflight has only a single mention in the unamended 1958 text:

... the term "aeronautical and space vehicles" means aircraft, missiles, satellites, and other space vehicles, manned and unmanned, together with related equipment, devices, components, and parts.

The main focus of NASA at its founding was to provide a single agency to coordinate space and spaced-based research, which at the time would have been largely (although not exclusively) Earth-focused.

Comment Re:Something stinks (Score 1) 380

Well, at present Putin's facing a financial crisis that is going to force him to drop military spending from 69 billion to 48 billion dollars. Germany is raising its defense spending to 40 billion, and if you factor in it doesn't need to defend vast terrain or have a multi-ocean blue water navy, Germany alone should be more than a match for the conventional forces of Russia.

Things may have looked different ten years ago when Russia was riding on high energy prices -- one of the reasons that the Obama administration was so pro-fracking: to contain Russian power. But today Europe really doesn't need the US to defend itself. Sure it'd have to shift some of its defense spending away from things that support US military operations to things that replace them.

In fact support of US power has been a major reason for continuing NATO since the collapse of the Warsaw Pact. The multinational force in the Iraq War wouldn't have been possible without NATO, although it wasn't a NATO operation per se. Afghanistan was a NATO operation; in fact it is the sole time in the history of the organization that the Article V mutual defense provision has been trigger -- by the US in response to 9/11.

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