Open thread: Language
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"Here is an ‘out of the box idea’," Ruth writes. "Let the heroes of ‘All’ our countries, for once, risk the ultimate sacrifice for something greater than one man’s idea. Maybe once let these men and woman that rise every morning and say ‘today I will stand for something’ and say ‘evil will not prevail, not on my watch’. For once let them volunteer for us all, you never know, mankind, the human race. It might just catch on if we let it." -- "Here is an idea: Send battle-hardened, strong-minded soldiers and marines on the long trips into space. We are conditioned to live with the bare minimal (of) life’s necessities and are trained to be prepared for … the worst conditions that any environment could throw at us. Hell, me and my men will go, set up a colony somewhere and await colonists to arrive."Marsin kiertoradalla olevan Mars Reconnaissance Orbiterin ottama kuva Phoenixin laskeutumisesta kokonaisuudessaan.
All steps that devolve power away from a central authority — including laws, trade, and education — will raise democracy. In Quadir’s view, it’s not that centralization per se creates poverty. Poverty is the natural beginning state of all societies, east or west. Rather, decentralization is the engine which removes poverty and brings wealth. To the degree that infrastructure, education, and trade can be decentralized, wealth will rise in proportion. To the degree that infrastructure, education and trade are centralized, poverty will remain.
Carbon-eating trees could convert most of the carbon that they absorb from the atmosphere into some chemically stable form and bury it underground. Or they could convert the carbon into liquid fuels and other useful chemicals. Biotechnology is enormously powerful, capable of burying or transforming any molecule of carbon dioxide that comes into its grasp. Keeling's wiggles prove that a big fraction of the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere comes within the grasp of biotechnology every decade. If one quarter of the world's forests were replanted with carbon-eating varieties of the same species, the forests would be preserved as ecological resources and as habitats for wildlife, and the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere would be reduced by half in about fifty years.
Learning to care a lot about things that do not matter and you cannot affect is bad, especially when there are so many things that matter and you can affect to care about. When our favorite team loses, we get to bitch, moan, and complain to others, but there isn't actually anything we can do about it. This cannot but create a feeling of helplessness. And on the other side of the coin, since we can't do anything about it, we aren't expected to do anything. There is no pressure, no responsibility, no possible criticism for our actions. Sweet, huh? What a fucking cop-out.Urheilu, pelit, musiikki, taide ja kaikki sellainen on turhaa kohinaa. Mutta kolikon toinen puoli on tietysti se, että kaikki tällainen keinotekoinen, synteettisiä merkityksiä luova toiminta on itse asiassa kaikkein tärkeintä ja ylevintä ihmisen toimintaa. On hyväksi tutkia millainen pohjatodellisuus meillä on ja keskittyä elintärkeiden asioiden kanssa puuhasteluun (nyt kun eksistentiaaliriskit painavat päälle ja pelastusvene on täynnä potkupallofaneja), mutta ihmiselle merkityksellisintä on se minkä vuoksi yleensä haluamme selvitä eli millaisia keinotekoisia maailmoita voimme rakentaa pohjatodellisuuden päälle. Ikuisuus on hauskempi viettää keinotekoisissa maailmoissa urheilun, pelien, musiikin ja small talkin parissa kuin pelkästään pohjatodellisuutta kaivellen. Voin kuvitella, että tuhannen vuoden kuluttua aloittaisin uuden harrastuksen ja yrittäisin innostua jalkapallosta, vaikka kisojen seuraaminen ei minua tänä päivänä kiinnostakaan.
If the world were merely seductive, that would be easy. If it were merely challenging, that would be no problem. But I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve the world, and a desire to enjoy the world. This makes it hard to plan the day.
- E. B. White
We don’t expect to compare the performances of today to those of the ancient Greeks, but we do expect some ability to compare what happened today to be compared with what happened yesterday, a year ago, a decade ago or even 50 years ago.World's fastest swimsuit causes serious waves - Speedon uimahaalarit rikkovat ennätyksiä. Aikoja ei voi enää verrata tavallisia uimahousuja käyttäviin. Uimarit käyttävät mieluummin haalareita kuin ajavat karvansa. Madness? This is Sparta!
“Yes, the swimmers today have advantages that let them go faster than swimmers ten years ago,” said Isaac. “However, that’s the nature of sport, whether it’s tennis rackets or golf clubs or new running shoes or the composition of running tracks. I wouldn’t say it cheapens it, but yes, they have an advantage over those in the past. All the people now have access to the same technology, so the best swimmer is still winning.”
This is how this Golden Shield will work: Chinese citizens will be watched around the clock through networked CCTV cameras and remote monitoring of computers. They will be listened to on their phone calls, monitored by digital voice-recognition technologies. Their Internet access will be aggressively limited through the country's notorious system of online controls known as the "Great Firewall." Their movements will be tracked through national ID cards with scannable computer chips and photos that are instantly uploaded to police databases and linked to their holder's personal data. This is the most important element of all: linking all these tools together in a massive, searchable database of names, photos, residency information, work history and biometric data. When Golden Shield is finished, there will be a photo in those databases for every person in China: 1.3 billion faces.
"We could, in principle, bring in a nanoreactor that [lets] your skin do something like photosynthesis. So if you are hungry, you just lie in the Sun," says Meier.
The problem isn’t unique to the United States. In England, a recent study revealed that Britons toss away a third of the food they purchase, including more than four million whole apples, 1.2 million sausages and 2.8 million tomatoes. In Sweden, families with small children threw out about a quarter of the food they bought, a recent study there found.Samalla yli puolet kansasta on ylipainoisia - Study predicts 75 percent overweight in US by 2015
The same thing happened during the 1980's, when the environmental movement began and grew. Back then, the corporate agenda also had a hidden cost to society - chemicals were not "ok" to the environment - that kind of hidden cost. Today, corporations are pursuing that same agenda - everything should be locked up, protected and restricted - and especially controlled. This has a hidden cost to society.
Mark Twain, 1800's: "Buy Land. They've stopped making it."
Seasteading Institute, 2008: Production resuming.
“Shed a tear for the ‘disabled’ today. Tomorrow they might pity you.”
Shadbolt says the risks of data spillage are greater than we're led to believe: '"If you keep within the law, and the government keeps within the law, and its employees keep within the law, and the computer holding the database doesn't screw up, and the system is carefully designed according to well-understood software engineering principles and maintained properly, and the government doesn't scrimp on the outlay and all the data are entered carefully and the police are adequately trained to use the system and the system isn't hacked into, and your identity isn't stolen, and the local hardware functions, well, you have nothing to fear."Extraordinary People: The boy who sees without eyes - Ben Underwoodista on tehty dokumentti.
"Some people are just able to look at the game and in less than two minutes, get to the top score," said Popovic. "They can't even explain what they're doing, but somehow they're able to do it."
- Computer Game's High Score Could Earn The Nobel Prize In Medicine
But extending our capabilities also means expanding our ability to make jackasses out of ourselves. It will be a jolly nuisance once we start receiving encrypted instant messages directly into our brains. We'll be stuck, in the middle of backing up our consciousnesses, trying to figure out exactly who tunneled that animated video directly into our visual cortex. And how to deal with that attractive but misguided young person who may have mistaken the grace and liveliness of those who have transcended ortho-bodies for flirtation. -- And yes, maybe our implanted artificial intelligences and neural networks will be wise and all-knowing. But that could just make them the Jeeves to our Woosters.Katukameroiden kuvan tulisi olla jokaisen kansalaisen katsottavissa ja nauhoitettavissa läppärilleen. Jos kukaan ei näe noloa tilannetta, sitä ei tapahtunut, mutta 24/7 rollaavat avoimet katukamerat (sekä kamerasilmät) tulevat tallentamaan miljardeja noloja tapahtumia, miljardeja ihmisiä tekemässä itsestään pellejä kerta toisensa perään uuden teknologian avulla. Ne leviävät nettiin nopeammin kuin kahvi näppäimistölle. Ehkä tekoäly-Jeeves voi estää pahimmat mokat, mutta ihmismieli keksii varmasti syyn laittaa se pois päältä, lähettää seksiviestejä ja juoda liikaa syntheholia. Itsensä nolaaminen ei lopu ikinä, ei vaikka kuinka paljon kertyisi ikää ja kokemusta. Eikä nolostumisen tunnetta edes kannata kääntää pois päältä, koska silloin todennäköisesti nolaisi itsensä yhä pahemmin.
I mean, the embarrassment quotient has been going down for a long time, and the fond amusement has been rising.
- Iggy Pop
The philosophy that accepts death must itself be considered dead,
its questions meaningless,
its consolations worn out.
- Alan Harrington