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Rachel Blum (Groby) has been at 1 events

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Mohammad Khatib20,310Pictures and updates live from Google I/O 2012. Invite all your friends who are at I/O. Install Google+ new app and Enable Party Mode on your phone and let the pictures be uploaded automatically! Let's collect all the pictures from Google I/O into one place! And test Google+ Events! #io12   #io2012   #io12extended   #partymode  Google I/O 20122012-06-27 09:00:0091  

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Activity

Average numbers for the latest posts (max. 50 posts, posted within the last 4 weeks)

7
comments per post
2
reshares per post
23
+1's per post

1,037
characters per posting

Top posts in the last 50 posts

Most comments: 37

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2015-11-06 18:47:09 (37 comments; 3 reshares; 24 +1s)Open 

This explains why I am single...Doh!

Most reshares: 8

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2015-10-23 17:27:22 (17 comments; 8 reshares; 78 +1s)Open 

Most plusones: 78

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2015-10-23 17:27:22 (17 comments; 8 reshares; 78 +1s)Open 

Latest 50 posts

2016-02-08 22:01:29 (16 comments; 0 reshares; 15 +1s)Open 

I just ran across a comment saying that in 2008, we shouldn't have give money to the banks to bail them out, but simply to mortgage holders. Or, "to be fair", to everybody. Sounds great! Solve the financial crisis and maybe even poverty with one stroke of the pen!

Well, as the Proverbs say, "If it sounds too good to be true, it just might be". So let's do some numbers to check what that would've done.

First, the "everybody gets money case": Cost of the bailout: $700 billion. Working age adults in the US: 243 million. Total money going to each person: ~$2,800. So that wouldn't have worked.

OK, let's try mortgage holders only. That's roughly 90 million people. Total money to each mortgage holder: ~$7,700. That's still not doing very much. People didn't go into foreclosure because they missed $10K. 
more »

I just ran across a comment saying that in 2008, we shouldn't have give money to the banks to bail them out, but simply to mortgage holders. Or, "to be fair", to everybody. Sounds great! Solve the financial crisis and maybe even poverty with one stroke of the pen!

Well, as the Proverbs say, "If it sounds too good to be true, it just might be". So let's do some numbers to check what that would've done.

First, the "everybody gets money case": Cost of the bailout: $700 billion. Working age adults in the US: 243 million. Total money going to each person: ~$2,800. So that wouldn't have worked.

OK, let's try mortgage holders only. That's roughly 90 million people. Total money to each mortgage holder: ~$7,700. That's still not doing very much. People didn't go into foreclosure because they missed $10K. 

I'm far from saying that the bailout as it stands was the best thing we could've done. But simply sprinkling out the money evenly wouldn't have solved the problem at hand, either. 

I really wish we'd all do some basic math whenever we hear a great proposal on how to solve all the world's problems in one fell swoop.

The world is a complex beast, and soundbite solutions never are. ___

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2016-02-03 17:23:41 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 8 +1s)Open 

Sitting in a waiting room, bored. This is the kind of stuff I find. Scarily, I played it up to a streak of 10, with my error never being more than 0.03.

At which point I got both bored, and worried about the fact that I've developed this ability at all. Because as abilities go, this seems to signify a somewhat misspent youth. (R=0.76)

Sitting in a waiting room, bored. This is the kind of stuff I find. Scarily, I played it up to a streak of 10, with my error never being more than 0.03.

At which point I got both bored, and worried about the fact that I've developed this ability at all. Because as abilities go, this seems to signify a somewhat misspent youth. (R=0.76)___

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2016-02-03 17:12:21 (2 comments; 5 reshares; 54 +1s)Open 

Oh. But I thought...

Oh. But I thought...___

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2016-02-03 16:25:37 (7 comments; 0 reshares; 26 +1s)Open 

And my condolences to all my colleagues in the bay area. Happy 101!

___And my condolences to all my colleagues in the bay area. Happy 101!

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2016-02-02 20:53:40 (23 comments; 1 reshares; 22 +1s)Open 

There's an article making the rounds about the six coin flips in Iowa all going Clinton's way, and this being [1] "The Most Statistically Improbable Coin-Toss Luck Ever". 

Not quite. 

Yes, it's a 1.5% chance to win 6 coin tosses in a row[2]. That's hardly "most improbable ever". It's not the best odds, but not quite as unlikely as it may sound to you.

It's about half the chance of a woman having twins[4]. Which does tend to happen without people breaking out in hue and cry about most improbable odds.

Or roughly about the chance that a given motorcycle is involved in an accident in a given year[3]. Suppose you don't need that helmet any more, do you? Wait, you do? I thought it's "the most improbable luck"?

I certainly wouldn't bet on these odds, but it's far from "mostim... more »

There's an article making the rounds about the six coin flips in Iowa all going Clinton's way, and this being [1] "The Most Statistically Improbable Coin-Toss Luck Ever". 

Not quite. 

Yes, it's a 1.5% chance to win 6 coin tosses in a row[2]. That's hardly "most improbable ever". It's not the best odds, but not quite as unlikely as it may sound to you.

It's about half the chance of a woman having twins[4]. Which does tend to happen without people breaking out in hue and cry about most improbable odds.

Or roughly about the chance that a given motorcycle is involved in an accident in a given year[3]. Suppose you don't need that helmet any more, do you? Wait, you do? I thought it's "the most improbable luck"?

I certainly wouldn't bet on these odds, but it's far from "most improbable". And before you call it cheating, you get to explain how the coin magically lands on the right side with Sanders observers present. 

You can even check for yourself: https://twitter.com/SageRosenfels18/status/694395728995622912, courtesy of the omnipresence of cell phones.

If Hillary Clinton can influence that coin, I want her as president. The woman must have incredible supernatural powers and will be able to fix all of our problems by willing it so alone.

[1] http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2016/02/02/hillary-clinton-has-the-most-statistically-improbable-coin-toss-luck-ever/

[2]  Where does that number come from? Each coin toss has 2 possible outcomes. That means a single coin toss can be heads, or tail - two possible outcomes. The next toss doubles the number of outcomes, since it can independently be heads or tail. So for two coins, we have HH, HT, TH, TT. The third one doubles it again, to 8 possible outcomes - HHH, HHT, HTH, HTT, THH, THT, TTH, TTT. The 4th one doubles it again, to 16 outcomes. (I'll spare you the list). The 5th one gives 32 outcomes, and the 6th one gives 64 possible outcomes.

So the chance of being all heads (or all Clinton) is 1 in 64 - roughly 1.5%. 

[3] http://www.msgroup.org/Tip.aspx?Num=170

[4] http://www.babycenter.com/0_your-likelihood-of-having-twins-or-more_3575.bc___

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2016-01-20 13:31:16 (4 comments; 6 reshares; 10 +1s)Open 

Yes, I mumbled something about "less reshares". And I try to stick to it - you have no idea how many cat pictures I spared you yesterday evening alone. My will power is immense, I tell you!

But when a truly great piece of writing comes along, what am I to do but partially eat my words and share?

It's a beautiful piece. It's about Bowie, but not really. It's about his music, but not really. It's about dreams, but not really.

It's about our reverence for him (and all great artists), about who we are, about seeking our own truth. And about the fact that the universe sometimes has a really odd sense of humor.

Oh, give it a read. I'm not doing it justice at all. You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll think about your life. Have 15 minutes of beauty in your day. 

Yes, I mumbled something about "less reshares". And I try to stick to it - you have no idea how many cat pictures I spared you yesterday evening alone. My will power is immense, I tell you!

But when a truly great piece of writing comes along, what am I to do but partially eat my words and share?

It's a beautiful piece. It's about Bowie, but not really. It's about his music, but not really. It's about dreams, but not really.

It's about our reverence for him (and all great artists), about who we are, about seeking our own truth. And about the fact that the universe sometimes has a really odd sense of humor.

Oh, give it a read. I'm not doing it justice at all. You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll think about your life. Have 15 minutes of beauty in your day. ___

2016-01-19 00:05:41 (14 comments; 1 reshares; 13 +1s)Open 

Look at that - Rachel's first Medium post. Part of a change for 2016.

====

Every year, at the end of the year, I go on a “social media fast” — a month-long hiatus from social media, meant to gain perspective, reconnect with the physical world, and give my loved ones a month of me, undivided.

And when I returned from 2015’s hiatus, several things struck me — and ultimately, made me rethink how I do want to spend my online time. So, what are those things?

The first insight was driven home by a spotty internet connection when I returned. Pictures wouldn’t load, and so my stream looked a bit barren. Most of it empty boxes, with a “failed to load image” indicator. And I finally saw the stream for what it is: An almost complete lack of long-form content, many pure re-shares without any additional content, and many very short, one-paragraphposts. Most of them wri... more »

Look at that - Rachel's first Medium post. Part of a change for 2016.

====

Every year, at the end of the year, I go on a “social media fast” — a month-long hiatus from social media, meant to gain perspective, reconnect with the physical world, and give my loved ones a month of me, undivided.

And when I returned from 2015’s hiatus, several things struck me — and ultimately, made me rethink how I do want to spend my online time. So, what are those things?

The first insight was driven home by a spotty internet connection when I returned. Pictures wouldn’t load, and so my stream looked a bit barren. Most of it empty boxes, with a “failed to load image” indicator. And I finally saw the stream for what it is: An almost complete lack of long-form content, many pure re-shares without any additional content, and many very short, one-paragraph posts. Most of them written merely to get a quick rise, or a quick laugh. No deep, nuanced exploration of issues. No beautiful writing. No moving arguments. Just short blurbs of text, often on inane subjects.

To be clear, I have no doubt that these subjects matter to their authors. That the posts are important to them. And I would not want to discourage them from expressing themselves — but they more often than not do not really matter to me. My life is simply not affected by them, for better or for worse. And the converse holds true for many of my posts. Does it really matter to you what I had for breakfast?

It is ultimately an issue of attention. I only have so much of it to give, and I would like to focus it on things relevant to my friends, my tribe, my family.

You might want to make the case that these are social networks, and it is about social interactions, and the social glue between friends. Not long form content. And to some very small extent, you are right.
But most of the posts I see are not really about a social connection. They focus on the author, their life, their achievements and banalities. They are “I” statements. “You” is rare. They are not interactions, but proclamations.

This is not the fault of the people posting, but of the medium. The whole nature of social media is “fire and forget”. Every exchange is asynchronous, not bringing people together. And worse, the exchange requires no investment of yourself, your time, your thoughts — just shoot a quick sentence.

At this point in the argument, we come inevitably to the comments. One might want to argue that this is where the “social” part happens. And yet, we all know that’s not true. There’s the old saw that you just don’t want to read the comments, and it’s some of the best Internet advice you’ll ever get.

Sure, there is the occasional attempt at a meaningful exchange. But most online comments are, at best, about the 140-character soundbite, the quick fix, the gotcha moment, the proclamation of one’s allegiance to an ideological camp. There is no room for nuances. And worst of all, they are often vicious, with an utter lack of any regard for the person at the receiving end of it.

Oddly, one of the most insightful quotes I ever read on the impact of this is from a 16th century philosopher, Montaigne: The contagion is very dangerous in the crowd. A man must either imitate the vicious or hate them : both are dangerous things. Either to resemble them, because they are many, or to hate many, because they are unresembling to ourselves.

Neither choice seems appealing to me.

As a consequence, I needed to change things. I prefer to both create and consume long form content, exploring ideas in a bit more depth.

For the social interactions, I prefer fewer, deeper connections — and so I have switched to e-mail exchanges. Or postal letters, if I can. Yes, an archaic technology. But there is a deep satisfaction in closing an envelope, sending it on its way. And an even deeper one at opening a piece of mail that is not junk.

As for social media, it still has its place. But that place is much smaller than it used to be.___

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2016-01-15 17:21:15 (5 comments; 2 reshares; 28 +1s)Open 

Indeed. And trans women can confirm that they in turn lost all those privileges. 

But, and that's the funny part, it's still more powerful coming from a trans guy. Not because he's a guy, specifically, but because he gained something. It's hard to dismiss that as whiny complaints about issues that just happened because you don't really fit in your gender role.

Which is what trans women get to hear when they talk about the privileges they lost.

+Kryptyk Physh This one

http://everydayfeminism.com/2015/05/male-privilege-trans-men/
___Indeed. And trans women can confirm that they in turn lost all those privileges. 

But, and that's the funny part, it's still more powerful coming from a trans guy. Not because he's a guy, specifically, but because he gained something. It's hard to dismiss that as whiny complaints about issues that just happened because you don't really fit in your gender role.

Which is what trans women get to hear when they talk about the privileges they lost.

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2016-01-15 03:43:34 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 8 +1s)Open 

I probably will get in trouble with the international feminist and LGBT cabals for revealing parts of their secret agenda, but here it is: A documentary with secret footage from the Social Justice Warrior basic training camp.

Don't worry, all comments in the comment room were purely simulated, and every trainee carried a block button they could have used.

I probably will get in trouble with the international feminist and LGBT cabals for revealing parts of their secret agenda, but here it is: A documentary with secret footage from the Social Justice Warrior basic training camp.

Don't worry, all comments in the comment room were purely simulated, and every trainee carried a block button they could have used.___

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2016-01-13 22:59:50 (0 comments; 2 reshares; 48 +1s)Open 

Sometimes, I mourn the demise of regretsy. Thankfully, people still share links. 

Sometimes, I mourn the demise of regretsy. Thankfully, people still share links. ___

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2016-01-12 19:26:51 (7 comments; 1 reshares; 17 +1s)Open 

"Comfort IN, Dump OUT". It's so lovely when human interaction can be reduced to simple formulas, isn't it? Finally, you know just the right thing to do. All those awkward moments, there's now a clear answer.

Except there's not always a clear "IN/OUT". You're both miserable because it's close to the anniversary of losing a parent - where's the IN part again? Who's supposed to comfort whom here?

You just lost a pet, but your close friend lost their livelihood a month ago - does that mean you get to dump your misery on them, just because your trauma is the more recent one? Even if they maybe are in a deep depression?

I believe that each and every personal interaction will require you to think - you cannot just follow a magic script. As for "comfort" and "dump", I'd ask to consider that both of them... more »

"Comfort IN, Dump OUT". It's so lovely when human interaction can be reduced to simple formulas, isn't it? Finally, you know just the right thing to do. All those awkward moments, there's now a clear answer.

Except there's not always a clear "IN/OUT". You're both miserable because it's close to the anniversary of losing a parent - where's the IN part again? Who's supposed to comfort whom here?

You just lost a pet, but your close friend lost their livelihood a month ago - does that mean you get to dump your misery on them, just because your trauma is the more recent one? Even if they maybe are in a deep depression?

I believe that each and every personal interaction will require you to think - you cannot just follow a magic script. As for "comfort" and "dump", I'd ask to consider that both of them might not be the right thing.

Many people in a traumatic situation don't want comfort. They want compassion. Knowing you stand with them. Knowing you are there to support them, to catch them if they fall. Knowing you feel their pain, too.

And for ${DEITY}'s sake, don't "dump out". Don't dump at all. 

Accept compassion and loving kindness if you are desperate, ask for help, cry about the unfairness that is life - but please don't treat other people as a garbage heap for your emotions. Consider that maybe you just don't know their suffering, and that maybe you're both inhabiting that special circle of pain.___

2016-01-11 18:06:05 (4 comments; 0 reshares; 18 +1s)Open 

And so, under a lead sky, on a cold, chilly Sunday afternoon at the beginning of January, I learned the horrible truth: Santa does not live at the North Pole. Santa is held hostage in a small cell in an undisclosed self-storage facility somewhere in Los Angeles. 

And so, under a lead sky, on a cold, chilly Sunday afternoon at the beginning of January, I learned the horrible truth: Santa does not live at the North Pole. Santa is held hostage in a small cell in an undisclosed self-storage facility somewhere in Los Angeles. ___

2015-11-23 16:44:08 (8 comments; 0 reshares; 23 +1s)Open 

It's time again - Rachel's annual social media fast. I'll be lurking till December 1st, and then offline till at least January 1st.

Ping me if you'd like contact info outside here. 

It's time again - Rachel's annual social media fast. I'll be lurking till December 1st, and then offline till at least January 1st.

Ping me if you'd like contact info outside here. ___

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2015-11-20 17:15:26 (0 comments; 4 reshares; 46 +1s)Open 

Another one of Trump...

Another one of Trump...___

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2015-11-18 20:49:30 (3 comments; 0 reshares; 13 +1s)Open 

Caitlyn Jenner - living proof that transitioning doesn't make you any less of an idiot.

Also, I've now got an official girl crush on Rose McGowan. Happy she spoke out. 

Caitlyn Jenner - living proof that transitioning doesn't make you any less of an idiot.

Also, I've now got an official girl crush on Rose McGowan. Happy she spoke out. ___

2015-11-17 19:17:07 (3 comments; 0 reshares; 38 +1s)Open 

The argument on guns: "If we ban guns, only outlaws will have guns".
The argument on encryption: "If we ban encryption, we will find the terrorists".

Sometimes I wonder if politicians are merely trolls who have discovered they can collect bribes for trolling. 

The argument on guns: "If we ban guns, only outlaws will have guns".
The argument on encryption: "If we ban encryption, we will find the terrorists".

Sometimes I wonder if politicians are merely trolls who have discovered they can collect bribes for trolling. ___

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2015-11-13 19:56:12 (1 comments; 0 reshares; 15 +1s)Open 

___

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2015-11-08 01:47:36 (9 comments; 3 reshares; 48 +1s)Open 

I think I have this year's Christmas cards winner...

Wait... is that not what this is?___I think I have this year's Christmas cards winner...

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2015-11-06 20:11:24 (2 comments; 3 reshares; 31 +1s)Open 

Liberated from a private share. I'll never be able to hear that sentence again without bursting out laughing ;)

It's my theory that the more important the stuff, the more Bothans need to die to get it. Basically ritualistic suicide for Bothans to get things done.___Liberated from a private share. I'll never be able to hear that sentence again without bursting out laughing ;)

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2015-11-06 18:47:09 (37 comments; 3 reshares; 24 +1s)Open 

From a Facebook page called "Christian Mothers Against Masturbation".

https://www.facebook.com/Christian-Mothers-Against-Masturbation-1560660604170522/

Yes, it's parody. But it's brilliant.

h/t +Jürgen Hubert​

This explains why I am single...Doh!___From a Facebook page called "Christian Mothers Against Masturbation".

https://www.facebook.com/Christian-Mothers-Against-Masturbation-1560660604170522/

Yes, it's parody. But it's brilliant.

h/t +Jürgen Hubert​

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2015-11-06 14:27:29 (15 comments; 3 reshares; 34 +1s)Open 

Greek mythology is a wonderful thing :)

___Greek mythology is a wonderful thing :)

2015-11-04 16:54:52 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 16 +1s)Open 

This. If you don't vote, shut your complaints. It's your responsibility we are where we are.

And for crying out loud, stuff the kindergarten idea of "the system is corrupt, so it's pointless". In what fantasy world of yours does sitting in the couch work better at changing things?

If you don't actively work to achieve change, you're condoning the system as it is - "the standard you walk past is the standard you accept".

An open letter to my fellow liberals/progressives who didn't vote yesterday.

Yesterday, November 3, 2015, was election day.  I guess you didn't know that.  You stayed home.  You FUCKING stayed home.  Why?  Does it not bother you that poll after poll leading up to these off-year elections always seem to indicate victories for Democrats and liberals and yet, today the new Kentucky governor is a Tea Party Republican, the Virgina senate is still in the hands of reactionaries, and Houston(TX) can't be bothered to extend equality to all its citizens.  A year and a month ago pollsters assured me that Jason Carter(D) and Michelle Nunn(D) were going to be the next governor of and senator from (respectively) Georgia.  How'd that work out?  Here's a tip: If you're not going to vote, don't answer the fucking questions about who you're going to vote for.  M'kay?

Maybe you only thought that elections only took place in years divisible by 4?  Tell me, did you think it was odd that a pollster asked you who you would vote for (for example) in the Kentucky governors' race?  You must've been thinking this was just getting a headstart on 2016.

And now about those excuses you seem to be fond of: Stop blaming Koch money for these losses, okay?  The Kochs didn't pay someone to keep you from using the voting booth -- you did that to yourself.  And don't blame gerrymandering either.  Your vote can overcome that if you'd just vote.  And stop insisting that big money from unfettered PACs has rendered your vote worthless -- that's only because you didn't vote to eliminate big money from our elections when you had the chance (still, it's not too late).

And another thing: Stop with the fucking petitions, okay?  They don't do shit.  I know this because there's no conservative movement to restrict or inhibit signing that stupid online petition.  You know what does work?  Voting.  Voting works.  But I guess you were too busy yesterday creating that brilliant online petition to get money out of politics, or demand that Obama veto the TPP, or something.

One last appeal: If you're a liberal and you stayed home yesterday, or aren't even registered to vote then you need to... oh, forget it.  FUCK YOU!

Sincerely,

A lib.___This. If you don't vote, shut your complaints. It's your responsibility we are where we are.

And for crying out loud, stuff the kindergarten idea of "the system is corrupt, so it's pointless". In what fantasy world of yours does sitting in the couch work better at changing things?

If you don't actively work to achieve change, you're condoning the system as it is - "the standard you walk past is the standard you accept".

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2015-11-03 20:43:46 (4 comments; 3 reshares; 21 +1s)Open 

An update to the mobile-friendly algorithm

Starting today, pages with an app install interstitial that hide a significant amount of content on the transition from the search result page won’t be considered mobile-friendly .

Instead of full page interstitials, we recommend that webmasters use more user-friendly formats such as app install banners. We hope that this change will make it easier for searchers to see the content of the pages they are looking for.

Happy searching!

An update to the mobile-friendly algorithm

Starting today, pages with an app install interstitial that hide a significant amount of content on the transition from the search result page won’t be considered mobile-friendly .

Instead of full page interstitials, we recommend that webmasters use more user-friendly formats such as app install banners. We hope that this change will make it easier for searchers to see the content of the pages they are looking for.

Happy searching!___

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2015-11-03 18:10:03 (17 comments; 3 reshares; 11 +1s)Open 

I told you Báthory Erzsébet was on to something!

(OK, most likely, she was framed. But the myth is just so much better without facts :)

I told you Báthory Erzsébet was on to something!

(OK, most likely, she was framed. But the myth is just so much better without facts :)___

2015-11-02 20:33:22 (5 comments; 0 reshares; 8 +1s)Open 

Uh, yeah. It's just that the rules have changed. Otherwise, you were totally popular. Why, the public is in the street, chanting your name day and night.

Oh. Wait.

Yes, we need campaign finance reform. No, a single-issue presidency was not going to fix it, and a boneheaded move from the beginning.

Uh, yeah. It's just that the rules have changed. Otherwise, you were totally popular. Why, the public is in the street, chanting your name day and night.

Oh. Wait.

Yes, we need campaign finance reform. No, a single-issue presidency was not going to fix it, and a boneheaded move from the beginning.___

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2015-10-27 18:25:32 (1 comments; 0 reshares; 3 +1s)Open 

There's a YouTube Halloween playlist making the rounds that I'm not completely averse to[1], so I made it into a Play Music playlist - why stream video when you can just stream audio :)

Here ya go: https://play.google.com/music/playlist/AMaBXym9O48fTZ2y6bKRaDGi9vGg2Sr3HQIwKWSsB3_BmGqa9EEEr_aiTedBlh7BF98rifN5V3kmihBhtPrspKzH15JdRVygBA==

[1] https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL9wRPbZvnAafjM2tc9W4YfQZF780yUGJ4

There's a YouTube Halloween playlist making the rounds that I'm not completely averse to[1], so I made it into a Play Music playlist - why stream video when you can just stream audio :)

Here ya go: https://play.google.com/music/playlist/AMaBXym9O48fTZ2y6bKRaDGi9vGg2Sr3HQIwKWSsB3_BmGqa9EEEr_aiTedBlh7BF98rifN5V3kmihBhtPrspKzH15JdRVygBA==

[1] https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL9wRPbZvnAafjM2tc9W4YfQZF780yUGJ4___

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2015-10-26 21:35:12 (9 comments; 1 reshares; 22 +1s)Open 

Oh god, this is funny as heck. (Read carefully)

No, you're not invited to comment on the benefits and drawbacks of different economic systems at this time. Read the text.

Then, either laugh, or grimace, and forget about politics for a second, mmkay?

Ok... that's funny.  Read the text carefully.  This is from your list of allies in Assassin's Creed: Syndicate.  I really appreciate the British geek's snarky sense of humor (which I can only imagine this is intended to represent in the story)___Oh god, this is funny as heck. (Read carefully)

No, you're not invited to comment on the benefits and drawbacks of different economic systems at this time. Read the text.

Then, either laugh, or grimace, and forget about politics for a second, mmkay?

2015-10-26 21:31:22 (16 comments; 0 reshares; 4 +1s)Open 

Alright, time to ask the mighty plus for help:

I have a poem I'd like printed and framed. Tastefully. 

Which means none of that "motivational picture with flying doves on the beach" nonsense, but solid quality printing in an artful frame. Anybody got any recommendations?

(I'm tempted to DIY, but... I take professional help if I can get it :)

Alright, time to ask the mighty plus for help:

I have a poem I'd like printed and framed. Tastefully. 

Which means none of that "motivational picture with flying doves on the beach" nonsense, but solid quality printing in an artful frame. Anybody got any recommendations?

(I'm tempted to DIY, but... I take professional help if I can get it :)___

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2015-10-26 20:19:59 (11 comments; 0 reshares; 22 +1s)Open 

Somebody(well, +Scott Hess ) posted about Rubber Duck Debugging[1], so I thought it's about time I introduce my debugging brigade. Them's the peeps I explain my problems to when I'm stuck, and most of the time, that does indeed get me unstuck.

If it doesn't, I thankfully have quite brilliant people in my office too.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rubber_duck_debugging

Somebody(well, +Scott Hess ) posted about Rubber Duck Debugging[1], so I thought it's about time I introduce my debugging brigade. Them's the peeps I explain my problems to when I'm stuck, and most of the time, that does indeed get me unstuck.

If it doesn't, I thankfully have quite brilliant people in my office too.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rubber_duck_debugging___

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2015-10-25 17:00:32 (7 comments; 2 reshares; 18 +1s)Open 

We need cheaper textbooks

A tenured math professor at Cal State Fullerton tried to use a textbook that costs $76 instead of the $180 book his department was using.   He says the cheaper book is actually better.    But his department has threatened to fire him!  

Who wrote the more expensive book?  The chair of his department!

Read the whole story below.

The ironic thing is that Cal State Fullerton, and the California State University in general, is starting to use free, open-access textbooks for more and more courses.  These books are being developed by OpenStax College.  You can get them here:

https://www.openstaxcollege.org/faculty

As of April 2015 they had these books:

College Physics (released June 2012)
Introduction to Sociology (released June 2012)
Biology (released April 2013)
Conceptsof Biolog... more »

We need cheaper textbooks

A tenured math professor at Cal State Fullerton tried to use a textbook that costs $76 instead of the $180 book his department was using.   He says the cheaper book is actually better.    But his department has threatened to fire him!  

Who wrote the more expensive book?  The chair of his department!

Read the whole story below.

The ironic thing is that Cal State Fullerton, and the California State University in general, is starting to use free, open-access textbooks for more and more courses.  These books are being developed by OpenStax College.  You can get them here:

https://www.openstaxcollege.org/faculty

As of April 2015 they had these books:

College Physics (released June 2012)
Introduction to Sociology (released June 2012)
Biology (released April 2013)
Concepts of Biology (released April 2013)
Anatomy and Physiology (released June 2013)
Introductory Statistics (November 2013)
Principles of Economics (March 2014)
Principles of Microeconomics (March 2014)
Principles of Macroeconomics (March 2014)
Pre-Calculus (October 2014)
Psychology (December 2014)
U.S. History (January 2015)
College Algebra (February 2015)
Algebra & Trigonometry (February 2015)
Chemistry (March 2015)
College Sociology-2e (April 2015)
Pre-Algebra (October 2015)

More are coming:

Calculus (forthcoming in 2016)
Astronomy (forthcoming in 2016)
Microbiology (forthcoming 2016-2017)
University Physics (forthcoming 2016-2017)
Elementary Algebra (forthcoming 2016-2017)
Intermediate Algebra (forthcoming 2016-2017)
American Government (forthcoming 2016-2017)
Basic College Math (forthcoming 2016-2017)

Let's stop making students pay outrageous fees for their books!  We can solve this problem.  There's already a lot of open-access, free courseware now:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OpenCourseWare

Check it out!  And read more on what we can do:

http://studentpirgs.org/campaigns/sp/make-textbooks-affordable___

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2015-10-25 16:43:08 (3 comments; 1 reshares; 7 +1s)Open 

Eine Dresdner IT- Firma hat eine kostenlose App für Geflüchtete entwickelt, die das Asylverfahren erklärt und dabei hilft, kostenlose Sprachkurse zu finden. Da ist Facebook-User Manfred ganz traurig, weil ihm keiner eine App schreibt ...

Eine Dresdner IT- Firma hat eine kostenlose App für Geflüchtete entwickelt, die das Asylverfahren erklärt und dabei hilft, kostenlose Sprachkurse zu finden. Da ist Facebook-User Manfred ganz traurig, weil ihm keiner eine App schreibt ...___

2015-10-24 03:28:03 (21 comments; 1 reshares; 20 +1s)Open 

I hate "e-test" software. eCollege's ExamGuard, web-based tests - that entire industry seems to be producing software ruled by complete and utter incompetence. I have not once seen a product that didn't make me want to yell at people.

And because my partner goes to college, I get to do tech support for their shit.

I hate "e-test" software. eCollege's ExamGuard, web-based tests - that entire industry seems to be producing software ruled by complete and utter incompetence. I have not once seen a product that didn't make me want to yell at people.

And because my partner goes to college, I get to do tech support for their shit.___

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2015-10-23 19:48:05 (0 comments; 4 reshares; 34 +1s)Open 

Hey, it's not only German engineering - you also know you want your energy from a device that's called the "Wendelstein 7-X Stellarator".

Hey, it's not only German engineering - you also know you want your energy from a device that's called the "Wendelstein 7-X Stellarator".___

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2015-10-23 17:27:22 (17 comments; 8 reshares; 78 +1s)Open 

___

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2015-10-23 16:48:28 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 24 +1s)Open 

Best part? He admitted afterwards his wife actually handles the money in his family.

I so hope she docks his allowance :)

___Best part? He admitted afterwards his wife actually handles the money in his family.

I so hope she docks his allowance :)

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2015-10-22 23:48:55 (8 comments; 1 reshares; 24 +1s)Open 

As evidenced e.g. by cars and motorcycles with "racing exhausts".

And certain mailing lists.

0__o___As evidenced e.g. by cars and motorcycles with "racing exhausts".

And certain mailing lists.

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2015-10-22 23:17:08 (9 comments; 2 reshares; 14 +1s)Open 

___

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2015-10-22 15:00:01 (32 comments; 3 reshares; 63 +1s)Open 

Dear God. There are tons of techies willing to lend their expertise to media for free. And we still get this shit.

If you're working in movies or TV and plan to talk about tech, even in passing - go talk to them.

“We collected his hard drives”, said the FBI agent from Limitless TV series (holds up PC power supply).___Dear God. There are tons of techies willing to lend their expertise to media for free. And we still get this shit.

If you're working in movies or TV and plan to talk about tech, even in passing - go talk to them.

2015-10-22 03:13:31 (3 comments; 3 reshares; 24 +1s)Open 

I must reshare this, for the sheer glory of it. Make sure you read the comments. If you're a math nerd, you'll cry with joy.

(Edit: sheer. Shear? Really, spell check? wtf?)

Build us a set, you're the Peano man
Build us a set tonight
Well, we're all in the mood for an axiom
And you've put our numbers aright___I must reshare this, for the sheer glory of it. Make sure you read the comments. If you're a math nerd, you'll cry with joy.

(Edit: sheer. Shear? Really, spell check? wtf?)

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2015-10-21 05:39:54 (1 comments; 1 reshares; 10 +1s)Open 

In particular this, about the so-called meritocracy, because I'm sick of trying to explain this one to people:

"Unfortunately, as the aforementioned research into implicit bias shows, in practice we are not really that good at fairly evaluating people’s success independent of cultural prejudices like gender (and ethnicity and age and affiliation…). ...

When addressing an event organizer (or anyone) who on meritocratic grounds opposes paying attention to gender, the crucial step is to draw explicit attention to their underlying assumption: they are assuming that the current system is purely meritocratic in practice, and that efforts to introduce gender into the decision-making is necessarily an addition of unfairness. Helping someone learn by presenting them with the truth, after all, will never work if they already have a conflicting falsity in theirmin... more »

In particular this, about the so-called meritocracy, because I'm sick of trying to explain this one to people:

"Unfortunately, as the aforementioned research into implicit bias shows, in practice we are not really that good at fairly evaluating people’s success independent of cultural prejudices like gender (and ethnicity and age and affiliation…). ...

When addressing an event organizer (or anyone) who on meritocratic grounds opposes paying attention to gender, the crucial step is to draw explicit attention to their underlying assumption: they are assuming that the current system is purely meritocratic in practice, and that efforts to introduce gender into the decision-making is necessarily an addition of unfairness. Helping someone learn by presenting them with the truth, after all, will never work if they already have a conflicting falsity in their minds.

So I think it is important to assert explicitly that the current system, in practice, is flawed and systematically biased, and that efforts to introduce gender into the decision-making is actually a subtraction of unfairness—an effort to bring reality closer to the theoretical meritocracy we all desire."___

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2015-10-17 23:11:44 (9 comments; 1 reshares; 31 +1s)Open 

That's about as Texas as you can get, I'd say. 

That's about as Texas as you can get, I'd say. ___

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2015-10-17 19:30:56 (17 comments; 0 reshares; 7 +1s)Open 

Hm. A self-important lawyer who puts his power fantasies above actually achieving something... Where have I seen that before?

Oh, right.

Nader 2 - Vanity fails again. 

Hm. A self-important lawyer who puts his power fantasies above actually achieving something... Where have I seen that before?

Oh, right.

Nader 2 - Vanity fails again. ___

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2015-10-17 15:19:48 (1 comments; 1 reshares; 14 +1s)Open 

___

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2015-10-14 12:42:51 (10 comments; 0 reshares; 9 +1s)Open 

Pedobear has a day job.

Also, in Japan, the elderly look amazingly young. 

h/t +Susan Jahn 

___Pedobear has a day job.

Also, in Japan, the elderly look amazingly young. 

h/t +Susan Jahn 

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2015-10-14 03:30:05 (1 comments; 6 reshares; 22 +1s)Open 

Oh. My. God.

This is awesome. Indeed, chivalry is far from dead. It's just horribly misunderstood.

The author is on to something. Also, from the comments, courage is an important element, because you gotta do the things all the time, not just when it's convenient.

Also: if the title doesn't clue you in - article contains foul language

Liberated from a private share. ___Oh. My. God.

This is awesome. Indeed, chivalry is far from dead. It's just horribly misunderstood.

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2015-10-14 03:24:57 (19 comments; 3 reshares; 30 +1s)Open 

Really? "Invented Software"? Hyperbole much, Wired?

Don't get me wrong, Margaret Hamilton did awesome things. She's a role model to aspire to.

But credit where credit is due, mmkay? Grace Hopper wrote the first compiler a decade or so earlier. And before that, women like Jean Bartik were programming Eniac.

It takes a team to make this happen. I'm damn tired of the endless hero worship in software. It's not any better when we now put women onto a made-up pedestal instead of men.

That's exactly the problem the industry has anyways. And that's the reason it is not inclusive. Because it's overrun by narcissists who spend their time looking to prove they, too, deserve to be on a pedestal. (Hint: if you need to look for a pedestal, you don't deserve it)

http://www.wired.com/2015/10/margaret-hamilton-nasa-apollo/___Really? "Invented Software"? Hyperbole much, Wired?

Don't get me wrong, Margaret Hamilton did awesome things. She's a role model to aspire to.

But credit where credit is due, mmkay? Grace Hopper wrote the first compiler a decade or so earlier. And before that, women like Jean Bartik were programming Eniac.

It takes a team to make this happen. I'm damn tired of the endless hero worship in software. It's not any better when we now put women onto a made-up pedestal instead of men.

That's exactly the problem the industry has anyways. And that's the reason it is not inclusive. Because it's overrun by narcissists who spend their time looking to prove they, too, deserve to be on a pedestal. (Hint: if you need to look for a pedestal, you don't deserve it)

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2015-10-12 19:31:06 (26 comments; 2 reshares; 18 +1s)Open 

Of course. Can't be not well-mannered, might frighten the natives.

___Of course. Can't be not well-mannered, might frighten the natives.

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2015-10-12 18:52:08 (2 comments; 0 reshares; 4 +1s)Open 

Remember the "gay genes" thing a few days ago? Genetic markers predicting your sexual orientation?

Before you get all excited about it, you might read a critique or three of the modeling process used. It's not quite as cut-and-dry as the original authors make it out to be.

Remember the "gay genes" thing a few days ago? Genetic markers predicting your sexual orientation?

Before you get all excited about it, you might read a critique or three of the modeling process used. It's not quite as cut-and-dry as the original authors make it out to be.___

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2015-10-09 19:35:52 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 3 +1s)Open 

I suppose that's "The Geek" in our side show. (I suppose Obergruppenführer Trump is "The Bearded Lady" - he just hang figured out where to glue the beard yet. )

https://twitter.com/lessig/status/652475141604147200 for the video - Now This doesn't have an easily shared video outside of Twitter and Facebook ;-/___I suppose that's "The Geek" in our side show. (I suppose Obergruppenführer Trump is "The Bearded Lady" - he just hang figured out where to glue the beard yet. )

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