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Comment Re:Pretty interesting (Score 1) 412

As the others have said, Wikileaks isn't out of play at all.

They've released 1000-2000 emails a day since Assange's internet access was cut. The large media groups just aren't covering any of it. Given that they're estimated to have 35,000-50,000 emails, and have put out some 18,000, they'll continue right up to Election Day.

That said, I also think Ecuador's reasoning for cutting his access is understandable. They don't want it to look like they are condoning Wikileak's activities, regardless of the motivation behind it or the winner of the US presidential election.

Comment Re:National Geographic magazine lost all credibili (Score 1) 286

I'm going respectfully disagree here.

There has been a very noticeable change in the format, presentation, and content of the magazine.

Issues the last two years have been shorter, with one long article filling up half the magazine, and supplemented by several short articles that are often mostly pictures. The "Food" and "7 Billion" longform themes were interesting...but the biggest change to National Geographic Magazine lately has been the lack of diversity in their content.

For better or for worse, the staff have decided that every article has to be linked to climate change somehow, often in the final paragraph of an article that otherwise has no relation to the topic. I certainly don't mind articles about the history of some truly stunning national parks in Canada and how they will be impacted over the next fifty years, but I have to admit that I kind of struggle to see the relevance of connecting the history and study of Trajan's Column to climate change.

Another huge loss for the magazine was removing letters to the magazine. It went from the full spectrum, to only complimentary letters, to only some sparse infographics, to nothing at all.

Comment Re:I don't believe it. (Score 1) 83

Just want to highlight the quick mention you made of the Navy. The US Navy's safety programs are mature and thorough enough that NASA has several meeting with Navy personnel about their SUBSAFE program after the Columbia disaster to improve the NASA programs. It says a lot about the Navy's SUBSAFE program that the best rating stops at merely "satisfactory."

Comment Re:Reverse be true (Score 1) 244

"The Big Fat Surprise" by Nina Teicholz is a real eye-opener on this. The author traced back where the whole "Fat is bad!" discussion came from over the course of an 8 year investigation. She found a single, dubiously-prepared study from a man named Ancel Keys that conveniently was released about the same time as President Eisenhower's health scare. Keys worked his way to the President's personal physician, and carefully convinced him. Eisenhower's doctor publically declared Keys work "brilliant."

From there he wormed his way into getting the American Heart Association to declare his study as fact. After that, Ancel Keys went on a world tour to confirm his hypothesis, deliberately excluding the countries that had diets that contradicted his initial study.

The result is that a lot of scientists jumped on the chance to get easy funding and perpetuated the idea that fat is bad.

The myth that all fats are bad has been present in the world opinion ever since. And a great deal of it is all PR bullshit.

Comment Re:Bullshit (Score 1) 209

Vernor Vinge covered this possibility well in Rainbows End in a seemingly-casual mention. While it was true that you could look up anything about anyone at any time, there were vast part-time volunteer organizations that filled the internet with false information to drown out the truth. The information was all out there, you just couldn't believe any of it.

Comment Re:Quintessential classic military sci-fi book? (Score 1) 732

It may not be a very popular opinion, but I'm willing to make the counter-claim. You are unfortunately making the same mistake with "State of Fear," pushing your own biases to misinterpret the message of the book. It might be one of the most easily misunderstood science fiction/political thriller books written in the past few decades.

The real message of "State of Fear" is that science is being politicized, corrupted by money from both sides, and its findings used to scare people, politicians, and others into giving political action groups more money and power. That the subject of the book is about Climate Change is just because it was a popular subject at the time, and there was a great deal of research and graphs that can easily be manipulated to prove either side of an argument. It could have been about anything else, electromagnetic waves coming from cellphones, vaccines, etc. If the book had been written later, it very likely would have been written about frakking.

The heroes of the story are all stauch advocates of improving the environment, and it is stated numerous times that their goal isn't just to prove that Climate Change is real, but to prove it with such a convincing argument that there is no room for anyone to disagree. They weren't looking to publish studies and papers in journals. They were going for a slam dunk on a prescedent-setting trial.

The villains of the story are only looking for more donations and power within their community so that they can sway the discussion to a direction that benefits them further financially and influentially.

What "State of Fear" does advocate is funding science anonymously, allowing scientists to do science, rather than even risk feeling beholden to a certain group that very clearly is looking for a particular outcome in the studies they are funding. A worthy goal.

Comment Re:This is interesting. (Score 1) 115

My kingdom for a few mod points.

This is the same strategy I use for both videogames, movie reviews, and even book/product reviews on sites like Newegg and Amazon. It gets right to the point of what might impede my enjoyment of a particular title or product. Most people won't even bother to comment on something if they were satisfied with something, but their feelings weren't extreme enough to merit fawning praise or raging disgust/disappointment.

Comment Re:So .... (Score 1) 178

My timesheets have to be submitted by Friday at noon, despite that I often work after hours work on Friday nights because that's our change window. They want accurate timesheets in place before the work is done, and get upset when you have to change it later. I've been told on more than one occasion that I need to provide 100% accurate data, even if that means providing it before I know. If I don't know how late I'm working, how can I provide you with a value for how many hours I worked until I'm done? I can't tell you in advance if we'll be done at 9pm or 1am depending on what we're doing.

This is exactly why my company has timesheets due on Tuesdays for the previous week. How your situation can exist is simply beyond me.

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