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Comment Re:Make it cheaper (Score 1) 218

To me it doesn't feel like Top Gear was.

Recently someone here described the formula as: You have 3 guys, of which 2 are constantly forming a team to play on the third person. They are switching teams continuously, so each of the 3 is 2/3 of the time part of the winning team.
The cars are just dressing on the cake of this dynamics between the 3 guys.

In the new episodes they changed it to American style, probably under pressure from Amazon. Jeremy Clark plays the role of the winner, James May has the loser role. Richard Hammond is supporting for the winner. It is very much an American TV cliche.

They destroyed the dynamics that there was, and thus the show. We will see how it lasts, but it has definitely changed.

Comment Conflating language and Framework (Score 3) 51

And I respect PHP very much for that focus. But as soon as you go beyond the very basics, I think the learning curve there is steeper. Rails simply has so many answers to so many questions, and it introduces those answers in a pretty progressive way. You don't even have to learn what SQL injection is if you're using the preferred query methods. You SHOULD learn what that is, but you don't have to to get started. If you don't know what SQL injection is and you use the MySQL db query functions with a string-interpolated query in PHP, well, you're going to be in trouble.

Probably he knows the difference :). But he seems to just try to make a point where there is none. He is making a wrong comparison. Ruby on Rails is a framework and should have classes/methods to handle SQL queries, just like any proper framework. Ruby and PHP are languages and shouldn't do that. If you use a framework in PHP, or even a CMS as WordPress or Drupal, you have classes/methods for doing SQL queries.

Comment Re:True (Score 2) 499

Thanks for responding properly. This is my take on this situation as well.

My anecdote: I have been on dating websites. Sometimes you come accross a profile of a woman, where the flow and feeling of the text is all off. It feels really off, like "what is going on here?". Then I see that somebody listed themselves as transgender. And then I understand where it is coming from.

Not to start another discussion, but the use of language of a transgender who is now a woman, still has many male patterns .

If you've ever read a fake female profile, where you knew it was written by a man, you would know that same feeling. Something is off and odd.

Comment Re:Niche distros are not a replacment for Debian. (Score 1) 58

If people are migrating to FreeBSD, why are there no stats that supports this claim?

When you look at BuiltWith:
BuiltWith OS statistics
I don't see a big upsurge of FreeBSD, at least not what I would expect. Around October 2015 it was gaining users/servers, but it is now slowly declining.

In fact, I don't think people are migrating that much to FreeBSD. I think Debian is slowly losing ground. The rock-solid reputation of Debian is no longer true. I don't know what happened, but I think they didn't gain the quality that other distro's gained the last years. Their migration to systemd was quite a disaster.
If you'd run RedHat you will have quite a different experience. I run Mageia now, and systemd is not really a problem here. They seem to have handled that migration quite well.

Comment don't use reCAPTCHA (Score 1) 131

This is about the reCAPTCHA service, where you load a JavaScript from a Google server, and only when you fill it in correctly you get through.

This is just another cloud service, and you would be silly to use this. In my mind: always use a CAPTCHA service locally, where everything is local, the generation of the image, the check, etc.

For a while I maintained a WordPress plugin with reCAPTCHA, but sometimes users would report a time-out connectin with the Google servers. There would be no information, nothing. Filing a bug report got no response.
Also I don't see the point in loading JavaScript from Google. Why would you want to load that from an advertising company.

For most (any) CMS or Framework there are local CAPTCHA's available.
A CAPTCHA isn't good usability, but many website owners seem to think they need just that.

For anti-spam I much prefer a Honeypot (empty input field that should be left empty) or a Nonce. Akismet is quite nice too, but still an external service (that will degrade well if it goes down).
Even a custom anti-spam question (quiz) is better than a CAPTCHA.

Submission + - SPAM: Being an overweight teen could come back to haunt your health

Trabzonhealthcare writes: chainarong06/shutterstock

As childhood obesity rates have reached global e pidemic proportions, researchers are scrambling to figure out what carrying around extra weight when you're young means for health risks later.

There's a growing body of evidence that suggests being overweight and obese during adolescence may actually cut into life expectancy in a serious way.

In a new study out of Israel, published in the New England Journal of Medicine , researchers gathered data from 2.3 million youth and found that even a few extra poundsearly on put the study participants at an increased risk of death from cardiovascular disease by early and mid-adulthood.

âoeThe association between a higher body mass index in youth and cardiovascular death later is very robust,â said lead study author Gilad Twig of the Sackler School of Medicine at Tel Aviv University, âoeand it didn't change in light of a very extensive sensitivity analysis.â
A person's risk of cardiovascular disease and death began to increase above a BMI of 20

Twig and his colleagues were able to work from a data set involving millions of Israelis because all 17- to 19-year-olds in the country are screened for fitness before starting mandatory military service. In these army health assessments, height and weight are measured along with vision, diabetes, asthma, and other health risks.

The researchers linked this data about Israelis in their youth with cause of death information from the Ministry of Health, focusing in particular on the relationship between body mass index (a measure of body fat calculated by dividing one's weight by one's height squared) and cardiovascular death (including coronary heart disease, stroke, and sudden death from an unknown cause).

What they found was startling: Every little step a young person moved up the BMI scale toward overweight and obesity, his or her risk of death from cardiovascular issues increased. (As I've reported, BMI is an imperfect metric for individuals, but it can be useful to figure out whether children may be at an increased health risk.)

The scale they used comes from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In this chart you can see how the CDC classifies adolescent BMI according to percentiles based on age, weight, and height. A BMI that falls below the 5th percentile would classify a person as underweight. A BMI between the 5th and the 84th percentile is considered normal. The 85th to 94th percentile is overweight, and above the 95th percentile is obese.

The researchers discovered that the risk of death later in life fell along a gradient associated with adolescent BMI, with the risk increase beginning at the 50th percentile — which is currently considered within the âoenormalâ range.

Here's what the risks looked like, specifically: For those who had a BMI below the 50th percentile, the absolute risk of cardiovascular death later in life was no higher than those at the lower end of the BMI scale (whose BMI fell within the 5th to 24th percentile, a range the researchers used as the reference group).

Adolescents with a BMI between the 50th and 74th percentile had a 32 percent increased risk of cardiovascular mortality (again, compared with the reference group). As for those with a BMI above the 75th percentile, they had a 76 percent increased risk of cardiovascular mortality compared wit the reference group.

âoeOverall, adolescents with a BMI below the 50th percentile had the lowest mortality rate and cardiovascular risk later in life,â said Twig. In addition to percentiles, BMI can also be calculated using absolute values. They found the optimal BMI score was around 18.3 and the risk of cardiovascular disease and death started to increase above a BMI of 20.

While this is an observational study, which can't tell whether a high BMI early on caused cardiovascular death later, the fact that the researchers found mortality risk increasing along with BMI was fascinating, said Andrew Stokes, a professor who has researched obesity at Boston University. âoeThe effects of weight on mortality appear to be graded on a continuum of risk that begins at the midpoint of the normal weight category.â

Stokes noted that the current definition for child and youth BMI may be too crude, since it groups everybody — from the 5th to the 84th percentile for body fat — in the normal weight category.

Twig agrees the results raise questions about the BMI system. âoeI don't think a single study should lead to a change in the definition of what is the normal range of BMI,â said Twig. âoeBut I do think that defining the normal BMI range between 5th and 84th percentile is something that should be carefully considered by other studies that might look at other outcomes.â
This study population was somewhat unique, and had some other limitations

The data set was massive, and the researchers did an impressive number of statistical tests to check their conclusions.

But there are some things the research can't tell us.

They only had data at two points in time: adolescent health profiles from military enrollment, and cause of death later. Although people who are overweight when they're young are likely to be overweight later in life, we don't know how the study participants' bodies changed in adulthood.

The researchers also didn't have any smoking data, and smoking often starts during the teenage years and affects body size and cardiovascular disease risk in adulthood.

There may also be something unique about this group that puts them at a higher than normal risk of death overall. As Lund University obesity researcher Paul Franks noted, the average age of cardiovascular death — less than 50 years in the study — is young. âoeIt's not clear why, but it's possible that being a [soldier], there are occupational exposures that affect cardiovascular mortality,â he said. [Update: Dr. Twig explained that the cohort he studied was young overall — with a maximum age of 64 — which drove down the average age of death.]

Finally, this wasn't an experiment — again, it was an observational study — so it can't tell us whether body weight caused the heart problems later, just that the two are linked.

But, Franks added: âoeThe consistency of these data with those from other [similar studies in non-military populations] somewhat mitigates this problem.â For Franks, even if the causal link between BMI and heart problem risk later hasn't been proven, âoeI think we can say without doubt that childhood obesity is a robust marker of premature death from specific causes.â
There's still a strong basis for a link between adolescent weight and risk of disease and death later

The new Israeli research adds to a growing body of evidence that being overweight or obese in youth can hurt your heart health and increase your risk of death later.

Jennifer Lyn Baker, an epidemiologist and public health researcher at the University of Copenhagen who has led studies on adolescent BMI, said the new research checks out with findings from Northern Europe. âoeAn advantage of this study is that it includes adolescent girls — most studies have only included boys,â she said.

A recent Lancet study looked at rates of BMI from 200 countries from 1975 to 2014 and projected that if the current trends continue, by 2025, about a fifth of adults worldwide will be obese.

To curb the problem, one of the Lancet researchers, Majid Ezzati, pointed out in a statement that figuring out how to help people eat better is one step. âoeTo avoid an epidemic of severe obesity, new policies that can slow down and stop the worldwide increase in body weight must be implemented quickly and rigorously evaluated, including smart food policies and improved health-care training.â


Link to Original Source

Submission + - Is crime boss Paul le Roux the maker of Truecrypt? (

mpol writes: Over at is an interesting story that is being unraveled. It is a story based on years of crime journalism. Kingpin Paul le Roux started his career as programmer/entrepreneur, but it was hard to make a living. One of his software products was E4M, encryption for the masses, on which Truecrypt is based.
Things changed when he got into illegal pharmacie, and doctors and pharmacists all over the US were part of his scheme. He made hundreds of millions in illegal prescriptions.
If he stopped there he could have walked off and live the easy life. But he expanded into drug trafficking, and even had his own militia in Somalia for a short while. He left a trail of dead people, but was finally captured in 2012. The last few years he worked on the other side, bringing in other people of his organisation.
Speculation is that Paul le Roux was the author and maintainer of Truecrypt, and can now divulge information on the weak points of that software to the US authoraties, making the software unsafe, as was previously mentioned by the people of Truecrypt.

Submission + - The Linux Scheduler: a Decade of Wasted Cores (

Freshly Exhumed writes: In a paper submitted to EuroSys ’16, researchers claim to have identified four major performance bugs in the Linux scheduler (PDF) that result in cores sitting idle while runnable processes remain queued, causing large performance and energy inefficiencies. Reassuringly, they have not just identified the problems but are also presenting their results and tools for Linux scheduler improvement over on GitHub.

Submission + - Suppressed randomized trial failed to find that unsaturated fats are healthier (

An anonymous reader writes: CBC News writes, "Replacing saturated fats in the diet with unsaturated corn oil fails to reduce the risk of death, according to a finding from a large randomized trial in the U.S. that went mysteriously unpublished for decades despite its implications for nutrition recommendations." The data was recovered from magnetic tapes by the son of the study's original principal investigator. Those that lowered their cholesterol had an increased rate of mortality.

Submission + - W3C Has Officially Begun Working on HTML 5.1 Standard (

TravenWest writes: People really isn't talking about theWorld Wide Web Consortium (W3C) announcing that work has officially begun on the next major version of HTML standard. The really interesting part is that the specification is being shaped on GitHub. This is going to allow for the development community to give feedback and suggestions.

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