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    posted a message on Is the United States Headed in the Right Direction?
    Quote from jkljohnnyr
    Legal data points:


    Oh man who left the door open? I'm all for second chances, but are you even able to post anything other than this? It's like the gold standard of nonsense. It's so bafflingly incoherent that I remember all the other times you've posted this grammatical algebra. Even that time it got posted from another account.

    At least you're consistent, I guess.
    Posted in: Politics, Philosophy, News and Science
  • 2

    posted a message on How Humans Affect The Earth
    Quote from LeslieGilliams
    Interesting blurb. I like that.

    Aside from the beaver we are the only species that can shape the environment around us.

    Unlike the beaver we are inherently greedy and selfish so we overexploit, overpopulate, and destroy everything in our paths (most of us do, anyways).

    We are sort of the only species that seems to counter the argument that natural selection actually works - with our capabilities we can destroy everything else.


    This kind of ignorant cynicism is so unbelievably tiring.

    For all our apparent destructive power we're still a lot worse at it than nature. If you want to keep score for what's done the most environmental damage I'd put the top two as space rocks and the sun. We couldn't destroy everything even if we tried. We could literally nuke the surface of the earth and cause a mass extinction (which would probably still be an order of magnitude less severe than some of the previous extinction events) and still not get rid of all life on Earth or even render it indefinitely uninhabitable. It'd really suck for humans, but life in general would carry on.

    Not to mention that we're actually taking steps to reduce our impact. This whole having the power to alter the environment on a planetary scale is a pretty new thing for our species. It pretty much only happened in the last 200 years and it took us a while to notice because the planet's pretty big.

    Also, I have to mention, every species shapes the environment around it. All life is a complex interaction with the surrounding environment. The key feature is that not many species do that with intent. Although there's more than 2 that do. What really sets us apart is scale and technology.

    And natural selection doesn't work? What kind of nonsense is that? Natural selection is nothing but a force of nature. For natural selection to occur it requires only two things: something that reproduces and the offspring of that thing to imperfectly inherit properties of the parent. That is it. Humans fit into that, so we're subject to natural selection, just like everything else.
    Posted in: Politics, Philosophy, News and Science
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    posted a message on Nuclear Power
    Quote from Tuaam
    In my honest opinion, Nuclear power should be used if the Goof-Brains who were on Crack while they thought of that Idea are Responsible for Anything that happens.

    This is pretty much the attitude that's kept us using 50 year-old reactor technology.
    Posted in: Politics, Philosophy, News and Science
  • 1

    posted a message on Nuclear Power
    Quote from TheBolshevik
    Reducing the risk of nuclear accidents draws down to reducing the number of nuclear power plants in operation

    That's like saying that reducing the risk of car accidents comes down to reducing the number of cars in operation. It's vacuously true that getting rid of something reduces its risk of failure, but it's not true that it's the only way to accomplish it.

    Improving nuclear technology can (and likely will) improve its safety. And that's saying something considering that, per MW generated, nuclear is already one of the safest methods of power generation. Nuclear technology definitely won't improve if everyone insists on not using it.
    Posted in: Politics, Philosophy, News and Science
  • 5

    posted a message on Python vs Java which one is better
    Neither, both, this is an ill-formed and meaningless question.

    Better for what? Better when used by who? If you don't know either language and don't know what you'd do with them then it really doesn't matter what you pick. If you know the languages and you know what you want to do with them, then you wouldn't ask a question like this because it's clearly the wrong question to ask.
    Posted in: Computer Science and Technology
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    posted a message on My Views of Everything
    Quote from ZallCaTor



    lolwut? Where do I start. Ok, I'll number them by quote.

    1: Yes, yes that is true. And?


    And it directly refutes your claim that life begins at conception. Life is long past the point of beginning again on this planet. There's too much pre-existing life in the way.

    2: Fail, only if the man was procreating with himself. The femail element mixes with the male to create diversity.


    It's already been pointed out that the sperm determines the sex of the child. That the female's gamete contributes to diversity was not being argued. You state that all sperm in a man are practically identical. That's almost literally the exact opposite of true. One might describe that as being categorically false.

    3: Don't play stupid with me. You know what I mean. People like to give unborn humans nice names like fetus, because it does not remind them that the subject they are speaking of is an actual human being. It sounds nicer to say "I'm gona go kill this fetus." VS "I'm gonna go kill this baby."


    No, people give things names to be specific. We could just call everything a "thing" and be done with it, but we don't. We humans like to put things in little boxes. We give things names like fetus, because it's a technical term for a particular stage of development (and fetus isn't unique to humans, usually the context indicates that we're talking about a human fetus). Zygote, blastocyst, embryo, fetus, infant, toddler, preteen, teenager, adult, etc.

    Actually, the fact that you categorically describe them all as babies is done for exactly the reason you claim fetus is used: it's emotional. You're trying to make every stage of human development equal when they're not.

    4: Those cards can be fabricated. Those cards are created in a factory. You could clone a human, but it would not be the same as the other clone. They are inherently unique. You could clone a card to be exactly the same, down to the atom, and they would act the same way. But not with humans.


    Humans are fabricated too, just typically inside other humans. And actually for the most part they're self-assembling. Of course that's totally irrelevant. The point is uniqueness is, ironically, not very unique. You'd be hard pressed to walk anywhere without tripping over something unique.

    Actually, it's kind of funny, some of the more unique humans are exactly those humans that aren't unique: identical twins. Of course they only start out the same. Humans are as much a product of their environment as they are of their genetics, so even genetic uniqueness isn't really worth much as a measure of a person.

    6: Your argument fell apart there. If we can't control our thoughts, but we can later... How does that work? How can we learn to control something with something we can't control yet?


    Literally the same way you learn everything. You're not born with much control over anything. You have to learn it. There's a few motor reflexes, but most of the big stuff is learned. Learning how to write is the process of learning how to control fine muscle movements in your hand and arm. You're not born with that and nobody can tell you how to move those muscles or what muscles to move or even exactly which nerve fibers would do it. You learn through practice.

    You can't control your thoughts because your conscious self doesn't really generate thoughts. Thoughts bubble up from deeper and are merely filtered and processed by higher brain functions, notably your consciousness. When I say thoughts can be controlled it's not a matter of willpower, it's a matter of practicing until your brain rewires itself to think differently. It's incredibly difficult to do exactly because you don't have control over it like you have control over your arm.

    I mean, look at all the kinds of mental disorders that exist and explain to me how they exist if people could control their thoughts?

    7: Those are, actually, due to outside effects. Visual, or auditory stimuli, or chemical, or biological hazards cause this too. Illnesses of the body also cause them. But they don't happen spontaneously, they always have a cause. Some seem spontaneous, but they are just a result of chain reactions in the body, that could have started, even, with eating a bad apple. (to make an extreme example)
    This, however, is not the case with those spontaneous neuron firings in the brain. What I like to call, creative neurons, or soul cells (lol).


    How can single neurons be responsible for creativity? Creativity stems from the interaction of different sections of the brain. Not the random misfirings of individual neurons.

    8: You are correct in one aspect. Our souls are intimately connected to our physical bodies. Whatever we do affects our souls. Whether it be emotion, or action. Sex is one action that has the greatest impact on the soul, and is why it should not be taken lightly.


    This answers precisely none of the questions I asked.
    Posted in: Politics, Philosophy, News and Science
  • 5

    posted a message on My Views of Everything
    Quote from ZallCaTor
    Life starts at the moment of conception, many scientific studies are leading to this conclusion.


    Life started billions of years ago and has been one continuous process ever since.

    More sperm can be created and each sperm is almost completely identical for each male.


    Lolwut. If that were true, a single man could only have all sons or all daughters, never a mix.

    Clearly that's not true.

    Each sperm produced by a male gets half of his genome. This leaves room for a rather absurd number of possible combinations of which half each sperm gets. They're pretty much all different.

    But, a "fetus" (or human as I like to call them)


    You could call it a mammal too if that helps. It doesn't, but then neither does calling it human.

    That life, that uniqueness, that conscience cannot be recreated. That consciousness cannot be recovered.


    Did you know that I could go grab a deck of cards and shuffle it and that particular ordering of cards I end up with has likely never existed in the universe before and likely will never exist again?


    Our brains are biological organisms.


    No, it's an organ. A part of an organism, but not an organism itself. If you were to remove a person's brain, it would not continue function.

    And they react to nervous stimuli, and neurons fire accordingly. So aren't these processes natural? Like a chain reaction, and process? Are our thoughts really creative, or just the natural path of the biology of the brain? Can we truly control our thoughts, or are they just part of the natural process of all the cells?


    I'm going to answer "yes" for all of these with one exception. Yes, the processes are natural. Yes, our thoughts are both created and a natural function of the biology of the brain. No, you can't really control your thoughts. Not directly at least, it takes a considerable amount of time and practice to actually change them in all but the more trivial cases. But, again, yes, this is part of the natural processes.

    What makes you think being able to describe how the brain works precludes the possibility of free will?

    In that case, our destinies are truly set, because every thought and action is just a result of a chain reaction of events between cells in our brain. How then are we self aware? How come neurons fire when nothing stimulates them to do so?


    Well, they don't. When neurons fire when they're not supposed to that's usually called a seizure and that's usually not good.

    Soul? If we don't have a soul, then we are just the result of loads of cells reacting with one another to create actions and thoughts as a result of stimuli.


    Yes, pretty neat, isn't it?

    So the soul has to fill that gap of humanity. And that soul starts from the very beginning, even before we have a brain. Besides, who said the soul resides in the brain anyway?


    Even if it doesn't reside there, it certainly interacts with it very strongly. Otherwise brain damage wouldn't be able to affect your personality, but it can. In fact brain damage can affect just about every aspect of you. It really doesn't leave a lot of room for a soul.

    The real problem of the soul is that it's a very complicated hypothesis. There's all sorts of corner cases, like are souls indivisible? Because the brain isn't. Are they finite in number? Do they have physical substance? If not, by what mechanism do they interact with the ordinary matter of the brain? What's so special about the human (or mammalian brain) that attracts souls? Could we make continuous minor modifications to a brain until it was no longer able to attract a soul? Can a brain only have one soul? Can there be brains with no souls?

    There's a lot fewer questions when there are no souls. Everything just kind of fits together better and makes a lot more sense.
    Posted in: Politics, Philosophy, News and Science
  • 2

    posted a message on Myth ~ True or False : Viewing unintelligent/stupid content can lower your intelligence or IQ or whatever.........
    Quote from Metadigital

    If you spend all your time listening to pop music, watching TV, and debating children online you'll probably not know much or be very good at critical thinking as a result. You can do these things, though, so long as your mind is kept active somehow - like reading difficult books, discussing topics with intelligent people, or exposing yourself to sophisticated works of art.


    But which is the cause and which is the effect?
    Posted in: Politics, Philosophy, News and Science
  • 2

    posted a message on C++ - I NEED HELP!
    Quote from Phrossbite

    Try learning C, first; it's not object oriented, and most of the basic functions are the same. Worry about objects after you get the hang of the basics.

    And it'll help you out if you ever decide to enter the lovely world of microcontrollers.


    No, do not do this. If you learn C then you'll know C, not C++. Despite lineage, resemblance, and partial compatibility, they really are two different languages, and have two different idiomatic ways of doing things. Learning C first will not help you learn C++ any more than learning any other language first.

    Also it's debatable whether object oriented features really make things more difficult. Maybe that's true in C++ because it's a horrible language, but not in general.

    I would strongly recommend starting with Java or C# first. I prefer C#, I think it's a more expressive language that tends to get out of your way.

    Also, as with any hobby when starting out: be prepared to ask a lot of stupid questions and make a lot of stuff that really sucks.
    Posted in: Computer Science and Technology
  • 1

    posted a message on Vegetarianism
    Quote from Metadigital



    Vegans don't eat cheese.

    Your best bet for vitamin B12 is probably nutritional yeast, which tastes a bit like cheese I suppose.


    One of the major reasons I don't think I could make it as a vegan.
    Posted in: Politics, Philosophy, News and Science
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