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Comment Re: Landlords (Score 1) 710

Better yet, why not just record one really good teacher and broadcast that to every classroom in the country? Half of teachers are below average, anyway - students shouldn't have to suffer through such poor performance. I mean, why sit through your local theater troupe's production of Streetcar Named Desire when you can watch the awesome movie with Marlon Brando?

Comment Re:Fake science/sloppy science (Score 1) 328

Then why not describe the novel techniques you developed to complete the research in the paper? Any process that is claimed to require special abilities is actually one the needs training.

Because no one cares. The funding model for science in the US encourages each lab to find a "niche," an approach or an experimental model unique to that lab, defended by a barrier of custom-fabricated apparatus or years-long technique development. No other lab can afford the loss of productivity associated with that kind of investment, to say nothing of the direct expense.

This is also the reason it's hard to take the reproducibility project very seriously: if you're engaged in a project whose thesis is that many experiments are not reproducible, and you're not getting the same results as a subject paper, what's your interpretation? It could be that the original paper was a statisitical fluke; It could be that you need another six months practicing the technique to get it right.

Comment Re:Death To All Jews (Score 5, Insightful) 920

PewDiePie's being about "it's fine to be an antisemitic little shithead"

I think his point was more that it's trivially easy to make other people act like antisemitic little shitheads. He paid $5, and he got at least two people to make a video that (were it their honest opinion) would rightly earn them wide condemnation. Yet no one's even commenting on those two dudes - they were clearly 'just following orders.' Doing the necessary to pay their bills and probably don't really believe their sign.

His point was that it takes very little to get people to openly proclaim beliefs they don't hold. Especially on the internet. (I assume those two guys would want more than $5 to hold up their sign outside a synagogue, for example.) Ask yourself how much it would cost to get you to add "Hail Satan," "I'm totally gay for DJT," or "People like PewDiePie deserve to die" to your facebook page. Or to film yourself saying those things to strangers in Times Square. You don't have to be serious about the statements, just to use those exact words so that someone else can use them out of context.

Comment Re:Done by Boston Arm 30 years ago (Score 1) 8

This is a very different approach to interpreting the EMG than traditional myoelectric prostheses. They're using targeted muscle reinnervation with multi-electrode arrays to decompose the EMG into individual motor units, then using the more precise motor unit signals to control. ME control couples a preserved, non-involved muscle to control of a single prosthesis motor, where targeted reinnervation gives them access to neural signal intended for the missing muscles. Decomposing a complex EMG into its component motorneurons works well with fine wire electrodes, where the recording volume is fairly small, but surface EMG contains too much information/noise. Using the MEA to decipher that complex signal is pretty clever.

It looks like it only worked well in 7/9 cases, and it's not clear whether they repeated over different days and different electrode placements. It's a proof-of-concept study showing that you can decompose surface EMG into a higher fidelity signal than just patterns of intensity

Comment Re:Look at the big picture (Score 2) 359

The time argument against left turns is fairly obvious and was the motivation for the change in policy. The surprising result is that planning longer routes led to a reduction in total miles traveled.

That is clearly not a result of taking a fixed number of routes and making each one longer, but must result from individual routes covering more stops, thus allowing elimination of some routes. In this case, elimination of about 1% of routes - a city that got divided into 100 territories with each driver making left turns can be divided into only 99 territories by avoiding left turns. The saved miles come from that one truck that doesn't have to drive all the way across town to start making deliveries. It wouldn't save mileage if you're a single truck serving a small town, but if you're delivering packages on the scale of UPS or FedEx, those saved seconds actually can be recovered.

Comment Re:FIRST POST! (Score 3, Interesting) 477

When someone asks a hopelessly naive question in a pubic forum, the easiest thing for everyone is to ignore. The second easiest is to point to a FAQ. In a community of reasonable people, you'd kind of expect that the real experts learn to recognize real problems - like Theo de Raadt not bothering to chime in to your problem until it grew into a conversation - and that less expert people get to feel good answering relatively simple problems. One imagine that they get tired of answering the same questions and mature into the "more expert" tier, but get replaced by new people.

The question is, if someone doesn't have anything useful to contribute, why should they take valuable time out of their day to post an abusive, insulting response? There's no rule that you have to reply to every post.

Comment Re:More Fake News And Drama From The Left (Score 1) 659

The real irony here is that we would not be talking about this if Trump hadn't made such a big deal about it and if the entire right wing spin machine hadn't jumped on board to help him. Somebody should acquaint the White House press secretary and his team with the Streisand effect

That's not irony: it's the plan. Give people a big, easily disproven lie so the media can feel good about clearly demonstrating the Bad Things being done by the Evil Man. Ad nauseam. Meanwhile, actual bad things, like reversals of environmental protections, appointment of oligarchs set on disrupting the levers of government, and threats of federal suppression of local government migrate below the fold or back to page 4.

Comment Re:Automatic. (Score 1) 483

A university should be working at the cutting edge. In the 60s, they were there inventing networking and email, but those are well established technologies now. There's no reason of a university to spend its resources on routine infrastructure when corporate entities can do it cheaper. Look at the prevalence of Microsoft, Google, and Oracle in the daily operations of any major university. If foreign corps can out-compete the domestic corps, why should the government subsidize an uncompetitive business?

Keep in mind that a lot of those Indian workers will have US degrees - US universities have been admitting more and more, partly to make up for declining state support. Many of those students come to the US hoping to turn a student visa into a green card, but most of them end up back home.

Comment Re:Good for them! (Score 1) 858

I wish every department would do this too. That means he can fire all of them for cause, insubordination, and we tax payers won't have to pay them any severance!

I think you'd have to show where responding to a survey about your past exercise of the right to free assembly is part of their job responsibilities. One might even argue that taking time to answer a bunch of litmus-test questions distracts from the serious business of running the country. In government, just because you're "the boss," doesn't mean you can fire your staff for refusing to wash your car.

Comment Re:Agent Smith (Score 1) 85

"Equilibrium" connotes steady state. Smith's rant argues that an ecosystem can reach a steady state, where the reality is they are oscillatory and often unstable. The reality is that mammalian (and other) species go extinct all the time, even without human influence.

The utopian dream where the apex predator kills off old herbivores just as fast as new ones are born is a mathematician's view of ecosystems, and it's based on the assumption of massless, frictionless, spherical predators.

Comment Re: Long range space probes? (Score 1) 156

C14 is rare and hard to extract in nature. On the other hand, if you bombard cheap C12 with neutrons for a few decades, you create a a block with a high concentration of (more) easily extracted C14. Much the same as it's easier to wash the gold contacts off an old DIMM than it is to extract gold from raw ore. The difference is that the commercial market for C14 is too small to consider recycling. C14-doped diamond as a power source has at least the potential to provide such a market. A pretty niche market, where you want a few thousand years of electricity (presumably to power electronics that will fail after a few decades), but it's a cool use of otherwise dangerous waste material.

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