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Comment Re: Stop using cars at all. (Score 1) 240

Only around 15% of the US population live in fully rural counties, which seem like the sort of place you describe. Perhaps you could make up for the damage you do with a car or truck by collecting your own electricity with all that land, or something. Luckily, there is hardly anyone else around you to enjoy the pollution your gas and/or diesel vehicles create. (I live in a remote and semi-rural area, too, and I bicycle everywhere.)

That, and the obligatory: move out of the sticks.

Or go electric - you'll have to stop using mostly coal for your electricity for it to make any sense (which is the dominant source, particularly in midwestern and western rural areas - where a lot of that low population density land is). 50 miles to a city isn't that big a deal for an electric car.

Comment Re:First Book Is Still Solid (Score 3, Interesting) 234

I just re-read Dune and Dune Messiah a month or so ago. I think Dune Messiah is terribly underrated, and a necessary counterpoint to the mythical heroism of Paul Muad'Dib in the first book.

Perhaps you meant to include it between Dune and Children of Dune? If not, you should give it another look - especially after a rereading of Dune.

Comment Road trips. (Score 1) 688

I am sure that lots of people still think about this - or pretend they will do it, anyway, but whether or not they actually roadtrip frequently the idea that they can't with an EV is a negative.

That, and plenty of folks live 50 or more miles out of the nearest urban center, or in other areas where a 100+ mile round trip is quite common. Current-model LEAFs won't even get you there and back again, unless you can be certain of a charging station in the urban area for the return trip. With that sort of hassle, even home-filtered biodiesel sounds like a more attractive option.

It is great that more affordable EVs with longer range are on the horizon. But that isn't really solving the bigger problem, which is the impression that range sucks, and will continue to suck. I'm not even sure that impression is all that wrong. 200 or even 300 miles ain't squat.

Comment Re:Article is totally misleading (Score 1) 269

No, because cognitive ability is still highly heritable in behavior genetic work (think twin studies). Candidate gene studies (the tradition GWAS grew out of) tends to have null results because there are thousands of genes related to cognitive abilities, and they likely do not work in a simple additive way (think necessary and sufficient conditions).

So, while I would certainly agree that candidate gene studies are unlikely to find a "smart" gene or genes, this statement:

so there is something much more important than genetics in determining IQ.

doesn't quite follow from these results.

Comment Re:You have violated copyright by posting this. (Score 1) 888

google doesn't have anything other than incidental pairings of the words quatloo and Akkadian.

To properly understand my post, read it in the voice of John Ratzenberger playing the character Cliff on the US television show Cheers.

Did I tell you about my trip to Iraq? Here, I have pictures...

Comment Re:classroom tools (Score 1) 210

Graduate students and professors need to "publish or perish". I'm hoping that at least some of them will use at least some of their publishing time to write free textbooks.

It is unlikely that a free textbook (or any textbook, really) will count for tenure, in either the social or physical sciences, barring very high level technical textbooks.

So, yes, they would be wasting their time unless already well established. That rules out grad students and early career professors.

Comment Re:Apple made the same mistake (Score 2) 390

However, people are getting more educated and tech-savvy in general.

That is false: familiarity with facebook does not mean tech-savvy.

A surprising portion of even the very best and brightest 18-22 year olds would still hold a floppy disk completely level if you told them the bits might fall off.

Comment Re:Apple made the same mistake (Score 2) 390

It has always seemed to me that an iPhone only really made sense if you were already an almost completely Apple shop. If you already use OSX everywhere, have a few apple TVs or airport speakers lying around, an iPhone is tops for integration.

I've never understood why anyone would buy one that didn't already have at least one OSX machine.

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