Search found 3660 matches

by elasto
Wed Feb 27, 2019 4:41 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: What if the second law was breakable?
Replies: 71
Views: 3019

Re: What if the second law was breakable?

Solune: I absolutely loved that book! Must be 20 years since I read it though :/
by elasto
Sun Feb 24, 2019 3:20 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: The Thread To Remind Me We're Living In The Future
Replies: 1916
Views: 358887

Re: The Thread To Remind Me We're Living In The Future

How often people are wearing their Nikes is probably useful info to Nike: if they wear them a lot they will wear out quicker and they might also be more into buying a new pair purely for fashion reasons, so you'll want to focus marketing efforts on them. How tight people choose to lace their shoes m...
by elasto
Sun Feb 24, 2019 1:16 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: The Thread To Remind Me We're Living In The Future
Replies: 1916
Views: 358887

Re: The Thread To Remind Me We're Living In The Future

Phones can be used with minimal dexterity and voice commands. The small numbers of special users is, once again, exactly why items like this get marketed to the rest of us. I disagree. To me it's like the (apocryphal) story of the US spending millions on developing a pen that can write in zero grav...
by elasto
Sun Feb 24, 2019 11:56 am UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: The Thread To Remind Me We're Living In The Future
Replies: 1916
Views: 358887

Re: The Thread To Remind Me We're Living In The Future

The number of people who aren't dexterous enough to tie shoelaces but are dexterous enough to use phone apps is probably tiny though. And in most of those cases normal slip-on shoes would suffice.

This isn't quite in the category of self-driving cars...
by elasto
Sat Feb 23, 2019 9:20 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: The Thread To Remind Me We're Living In The Future
Replies: 1916
Views: 358887

Re: The Thread To Remind Me We're Living In The Future

plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose! Nike's new self-lacing trainer, the Adapt BB, has fallen at the first hurdle after the Android app that controls the shoe malfunctioned. Billed as the "future of footwear", the $350 (£268) a pair Adapt BB launched on Sunday. However, an update to t...
by elasto
Fri Feb 22, 2019 11:10 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: What if the second law was breakable?
Replies: 71
Views: 3019

Re: What if the second law was breakable?

Too fundamental a change to even start speculating. Like asking "How would biology work if we got rid of protons?" I'm not sure it's quite that bad. The second law only applies to closed systems. If scientists found a setup where entropy could reliably be lowered, my first thought would b...
by elasto
Tue Feb 19, 2019 1:48 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6735
Views: 1050329

Re: Police misbehavior thread

You're being weirdly obtuse about this. If a student refuses to listen to a teacher, they're punished. But if the student claims the teacher is issuing bad orders, other adults can weigh in -- and if they realize the student is right? Then the student isn't punished. But that's exactly how I'm argu...
by elasto
Tue Feb 19, 2019 1:29 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6735
Views: 1050329

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Agreed, American schools escalate way too hard, way too fast, just like American law enforcement does.

Still, that doesn't excuse this child's behaviour, if indeed he did make physical threats. 'But he did the bad thing first!' doesn't wash no matter what the age.
by elasto
Tue Feb 19, 2019 1:15 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6735
Views: 1050329

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Um, how is this discussion not about how American schools escalate????? We aren't discussing that in that we all here agree the school escalated inappropriately. IMO there is no circumstance other than the pupil literally wielding a deadly weapon that requires involving the law. Any other situation...
by elasto
Tue Feb 19, 2019 1:03 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6735
Views: 1050329

Re: Police misbehavior thread

You do realise this is an 11 year old kid? If the school is going to punish them for refusing (bad) orders from a teacher who was being racist towards them, they are not going to calmly go home and hire a lawyer. Agreed, but that strays into a different area which is how American schools escalate b...
by elasto
Tue Feb 19, 2019 12:40 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6735
Views: 1050329

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Yeah, I'm pretty sure the reason the teacher won't be employed anymore has more to do with them effectively telling an 11 year old black kid that he ought to go back to Africa. Clearly. But the reason the pupil and teacher came to blows to begin with was because the teacher asked the pupil to stand...
by elasto
Tue Feb 19, 2019 10:56 am UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6735
Views: 1050329

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Yeah, but the teacher did send them to the headteacher. Apparently the pupil escalated things from there, the details of which we are not informed. The suspension was probably related to these further acts, not the initial act of refusal. (Comparing the teacher asking a pupil to stand up - something...
by elasto
Tue Feb 19, 2019 10:04 am UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6735
Views: 1050329

Re: Police misbehavior thread

For civil disobedience during lessons? Sorry, most schools won't tolerate repeated refusal to follow a teacher's instructions and nor should they.

Most sane schools won't call the police over it, but the pupil will definitely get anything from detention to suspension for it.
by elasto
Tue Feb 19, 2019 9:47 am UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6735
Views: 1050329

Re: Police misbehavior thread

The administration can't just suspend a kid and then blame the teacher for not following the rules. It is literally their job to correct the teacher and the fact that they suspended the kid instead means that they aren't fulfilling their responsibility to make sure teachers know and follow the rule...
by elasto
Mon Feb 18, 2019 6:56 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: The Thread To Remind Me We're Living In The Future
Replies: 1916
Views: 358887

Re: The Thread To Remind Me We're Living In The Future

It might be something akin to a 'self-esteem' thing: You or something else simply 'making the effort' is enough enough to prove to the subconscious that you deserve to get better, so wheels are set in motion to make it so. And making more of an effort in terms of choosing a more expensive placebo or...
by elasto
Sun Feb 17, 2019 10:09 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Hurtful Dichotomies
Replies: 43
Views: 4683

Re: Hurtful Dichotomies

That matches stuff I've read and heard before. It's truly fascinating - especially how people who have the left and right halves of their brain separated and yet they carry on basically as normal(!) There's a fun Ted talk given by a brain research scientist who suffered a stroke and got to study it ...
by elasto
Sun Feb 17, 2019 10:17 am UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: The Thread To Remind Me We're Living In The Future
Replies: 1916
Views: 358887

Re: The Thread To Remind Me We're Living In The Future

The placebo effect works even when told the substance is a placebo. That's true, but it's also true that expensive placebos are more effective than cheap ones. Idonno could be right that the mind will think you are 'skimping' by only doing one side of the body. The mind is weird, and there definite...
by elasto
Wed Feb 13, 2019 8:12 am UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Hurtful Dichotomies
Replies: 43
Views: 4683

Re: Hurtful Dichotomies

Anecdotally, people who suffer strokes in the left hemisphere have very different symptoms during and after compared to those who suffer strokes in the right, so there does seem to be genuine specialisation going on. However, yes, it's typically extrapolated into nonsensical pop-science from there...
by elasto
Fri Feb 08, 2019 12:19 am UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Virginia Democrats Sucks
Replies: 72
Views: 3838

Re: Virginia Democrats Sucks

If you'll allow me to play devil's advocate, I think almost everyone would agree blackface causes offence; The more pragmatic question is whether it should be a 'red line' issue - given which, speaking generally, no matter how many other good qualities a politician might have, it represents a 'morta...
by elasto
Mon Feb 04, 2019 11:57 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1002: "Game AIs"
Replies: 251
Views: 94311

Re: 1002: "Game AIs"

Chess is a game that plays toward traditional AI strengths rather than human strengths. Show me an AI that's good at Codenames or Pictionary, and I'll be a lot more impressed than by one that's good at Go. Sure, but I'm old enough to have heard that argument many times over. AI gets good at X, peop...
by elasto
Mon Feb 04, 2019 11:11 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Hurtful Dichotomies
Replies: 43
Views: 4683

Re: Hurtful Dichotomies

A completely valid and defendable position is that in all cases abortions are immoral, but because it is not the job of government to legislate morality they should be legal. That's probably an off-topic, but have you tried to apply this argument to robbery, for example? I have not, but John Stuart...
by elasto
Mon Feb 04, 2019 7:25 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1002: "Game AIs"
Replies: 251
Views: 94311

Re: 1002: "Game AIs"

How do humans learn to play a random game? It's via feedback/instruction from others who have already played it, typically ahead of time, and sometimes via a practice game. Mere hours after being told the rules of chess and nothing else, AlphaZero crushed a chess AI that had been refined over the co...
by elasto
Fri Feb 01, 2019 12:17 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: More efficient airplane boarding protocols
Replies: 79
Views: 18666

Re: More efficient airplane boarding protocols

They have done endless, endless research on this, and in the end, its all about the money, that's how they load. That's how they should load. They are a business, they act in their best business interest and for airlines, its all about maximizing profit on each passenger. Not at all. It's about max...
by elasto
Thu Jan 31, 2019 12:07 am UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]
Replies: 1371
Views: 217236

Re: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]

Don't get me wrong: it's an utter shitshow. But the fact is that Parliament, the Tories, Labour and the British public alike are split at least three ways on this in such a manner as to make the concept of "what it wants" practically meaningless. Presumably the EU27 just don't have that p...
by elasto
Wed Jan 30, 2019 6:18 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]
Replies: 1371
Views: 217236

Re: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]

Also, we have to remember that it's Parliament that is taking these decisions on the UK side, and Parliament is 600-odd individuals ... When the EU throws up its hands because the UK "doesn't know what it wants", it's really complaining about democracy itself. And yet the EU manages to &q...
by elasto
Tue Jan 29, 2019 11:54 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Consequences of climate change
Replies: 90
Views: 21830

Re: Consequences of climate change

Another problem is that climate change needs a coordinated, world-wide solution. If America implements a carbon tax and Africa doesn't, it doesn't really help the world if American firms just offshore their CO2 production because it works out the cheapest option once a carbon tax comes in...
by elasto
Sat Jan 26, 2019 7:19 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Consequences of climate change
Replies: 90
Views: 21830

Re: Consequences of climate change

Exactly. There's nothing intrinsic to capitalism that says we must privatise profits and socialise externalities. Something like cap and trade is perfectly compatible with capitalism. As Thesh says though, the issue is that wealth and political power form a feedback loop, and nothing grows wealth qu...
by elasto
Thu Jan 24, 2019 7:15 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6735
Views: 1050329

Re: Police misbehavior thread

It's more fundamental than prosperity theology, though that shares a common origin. It's just the Just World Hypothesis. People desperately want to believe that the world is just and that good things will come to good people and bad things will only befall bad people, and if you've convinced yourse...
by elasto
Thu Jan 24, 2019 5:17 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6735
Views: 1050329

Re: Police misbehavior thread

So they are assuming that it can't happen to them or to their kids. Basically. It's a variant of prosperity theology: If you're rich and successful, it's because God has blessed you, which means you must be a good, upright person. On the contrary, if you're rotting in jail, God has cursed you, whic...
by elasto
Thu Jan 24, 2019 3:16 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Police misbehavior thread
Replies: 6735
Views: 1050329

Re: Police misbehavior thread

I think they also probably think, either consciously or unconsciously, that even if they aren't guilty of that crime specifically , anyone who puts themselves in a position to be charged with a capital crime is probably guilty of some serious crime or other, and so society is still better off withou...
by elasto
Wed Jan 23, 2019 10:30 am UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]
Replies: 1371
Views: 217236

Re: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]

The fact that significant numbers of people did and still would treat the referendum as a protest vote is why Cameron was so foolish to call a referendum in the first place. Yes, democracy sucks when people protest vote even against their own self-interest in a general election, but at least they ha...
by elasto
Mon Jan 21, 2019 8:50 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]
Replies: 1371
Views: 217236

Re: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]

Yup. May has made some honest comments over a second referendum which I agree with: What did Mrs May say about another referendum? She told MPs: "Our duty is to implement the decision of the first one. I fear a second referendum would set a difficult precedent that could have significant implic...
by elasto
Mon Jan 21, 2019 6:43 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]
Replies: 1371
Views: 217236

Re: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]

There's a whole lot of talk about "Plan B", renegotiation, extension, etcetera, but I thought the EU had already stated in no unclear terms that there would be no renegotiation, and that May's deal was the best the UK could hope to get. So can anybody tell me why there's even an expectati...
by elasto
Mon Jan 21, 2019 5:34 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Trump presidency
Replies: 8437
Views: 743836

Re: Trump presidency

Oh, absolutely, apologies if I didn't make that clearer. Yes, most voters have 'red-lines' - and for every voter that says 'if you're racist (true or not), that's enough to disqualify you for me no matter what else is going on', another will say 'if you're a baby-killer (true or not), that's enough ...
by elasto
Mon Jan 21, 2019 3:34 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Trump presidency
Replies: 8437
Views: 743836

Re: Trump presidency

If anything it should be more worrisome... ... that 62,979,636 people voted for a guy because "what's important is that he's not a democrat?" Exactly. The eye-opening part for me is that, yes, partisan politics is that bad in your country. How much worse must they view Clinton? I am more ...
by elasto
Mon Jan 21, 2019 9:24 am UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Trump presidency
Replies: 8437
Views: 743836

Re: Trump presidency

I sincerely doubt Trump would have won without the solid base that genuinely believes he's the greatest President in modern history. Again, I don't think that's how they think. The main lie he successfully sold is that he's 'anti-elite', that he'd 'drain the swamp' etc. You don't to be 'great' for ...
by elasto
Sun Jan 20, 2019 9:49 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Trump presidency
Replies: 8437
Views: 743836

Re: Trump presidency

This is actually partly what always shocked me about Trump: He's *never* struck me as a good liar. Even seeing him on television as a child, I recall thinking of him as a greasy used car salesman. He throws so many red flags regarding being a liar that I never understood how anyone could take him a...
by elasto
Thu Jan 17, 2019 7:42 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Everything is racism
Replies: 43
Views: 11019

Re: Everything is racism

People call it biological when really they mean genealogical - ie. who are your parents and who were their parents? It's a form of discrimination at least as old as the Bible and the Cagot or the Dalits in India show persists even into the modern era. That's why you get things like the one-drop rule...
by elasto
Thu Jan 17, 2019 12:29 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]
Replies: 1371
Views: 217236

Re: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]

Today's Daily Hate-Heil front page is saying that defeating Brexit would let the far right gain power. I think there's a great deal of truth in that, which is why only a new referendum has the moral authority to overturn the previous one. Politicians abdicated their responsibility when they voted t...
by elasto
Wed Jan 16, 2019 7:01 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]
Replies: 1371
Views: 217236

Re: British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]

Interesting - I was wondering about something like that, but I was thinking you'd need to ask about all the pairwise combinations. My main problem with your example is that it doesn't give remainers the chance to express a preference for ways of leaving, whereas a preferential vote would allow me t...

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