0659: "Lego"

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Sufimoru
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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby Sufimoru » Fri Nov 06, 2009 9:51 am UTC

Persona wrote:But the thing I'm wondering the most about is the alt text... Why ask for Grandpa when the comic just implied that the house is gone after disassembly?

The way I see it makes the comic and alt-text chronologically jumbled, but seems to make sense.

Chronologically-speaking, the alt-text happened just before the first two panels, which involve a father and his daughter, who's young in that scene. Her grandfather donated his organs, so he was, well, resting in pieces. The last three panels are when she's older and having a flashback, as she looks at the lego piece before deciding to be an organ donor.

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NorthLondon
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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby NorthLondon » Fri Nov 06, 2009 9:58 am UTC

I always hated having to break up the lego model into bits and put it in the box with all the other lego bits. To the mind of the 8 year old me, it was no longer a house or a pirate ship or a space ship or whatever; it's inherent house-ness or ship-ness had gone. We are more than the sum of our parts.

PS - do people pluralise it to "legos"?? To me, it was always, "I'm playing with my lego" [singular]. I always thought "lego" was a singular collective noun?

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby Solar Granulation » Fri Nov 06, 2009 10:01 am UTC

I've registered at last just to express how much I like this particular strip. It takes the seemingly naive attempt at profundity and turns it into a truly deep message. Excellent.

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby Mantis » Fri Nov 06, 2009 10:04 am UTC

Aristotle dealt with this a few millennia ago in his Metaphisics, referring to 'matter' and 'form'. I don't think he had lego, though.

As a Christian, I don't find this comic particularly anti-Christian. I wouldn't even have thought about it if I hadn't read the forum.

Necandum
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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby Necandum » Fri Nov 06, 2009 10:34 am UTC

My take is that while the 'house' indeed is gone, if it is recreated exactly, from the same pieces or similar enough that it makes no difference, you will the have same house, although it will not be the original (if that makes sense). Sort of like if X1 = X2. The variables are the same for all intents and purposes, except that they are distinct.

Just the same with teleportation, I don't think that the person becomes some kind lifeless zombie. The matter at the arriving end, after all, is created to be an exact replica of that which was destroyed. Yes, you can look at it from the perspective that one person dies and a copy is born, but does it make any difference? As some said, consciousness is but an illusion, a mind-boggling complex program running on the greatest computer on earth. The program does not know that is has been saved, a copy made and moved, while the original is destroyed. The perception is continous.

It is like going to sleep. How do you know you are the same person in the morning as the previous evening? You neither percieve the moment when wakefulness turns to sleep, the intervening time, or the moment when the process is reversed. You make an assumption that you are the same person. Yet that is a false assumption. The 'building blocks' have shifted. The bodies structure, the cells, the molecules, the electrical impulses, are very different to what they were yesterday. Some parts have been destroyed, while others created. Yet you are still the same person, right?

I remember reading a great short story a while ago (here's the link), about an age where teleportation was a reality. The process was the usual, a person is destroyed and then recreated at their destination. Yet with one man, the destruction failed for some reason. So everytime he teleported, a clone was created. There were hundreds of them and they formed a sort of shadowy organisation. Which one was the 'orginal'? In the story, it was the most recent copy that was called the Prime, the one whose experience was unbroken, as if he really had been teleported. Each time a clone was created, it could be said that for an singular instant the same individual existed in two places at once. Then, their different experiences would instantly separate them into two distinct individuals. Neither was superior to the other. They merely became different.

So I guess what I'm trying to say, is that theres not really any sort of 'tag' on a person's consciousness identifying it as unique. It is just an arrangement of matter at any given time. Our experience is entirely subjective. We cannot determine if we are the original, or a copy. However, we think we are the original, and beyond that, does it make a difference?

Now, as for religion, I think it suffices to say this: Can you disprove the existance of fairies? No, you cannot. Nor can you disprove the existance of god or a soul. Doesn't mean one is more likely than the other, though.
Last edited by Necandum on Fri Nov 06, 2009 10:37 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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littlelj
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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby littlelj » Fri Nov 06, 2009 10:36 am UTC

Strictly, LegoTM is a trade mark. The correct wording is therefore "I am playing with my LegoTM blocks" or similar.

I assumed it was two adults playing with the Lego, and one being so taken by the other's philosophy that she immediately signs up to be an organ donor.

In the UK getting on the organ/blood donor list is dead easy and online. There is a code on your driving licence which notes that you are on the register.
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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby Sprocket » Fri Nov 06, 2009 11:11 am UTC

Disassemble...reassemble. Wait, did I miss the point?
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cvi
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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby cvi » Fri Nov 06, 2009 11:18 am UTC

I find it interesting that nobody has mentioned emergence yet. Check up on strong vs. weak emergence. (Wikipedia is a good starting point. I'd include links, but AFAIK I'm not yet allowed to include links in my posts.)

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby aliosha » Fri Nov 06, 2009 11:33 am UTC

Disassemble - anybody reminded of Short Circuit and the fanatic determination to avoid disassembly?

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby JustDoug » Fri Nov 06, 2009 12:07 pm UTC

To all those posters who seem to have the idea that making an 'X' rather than a leaving a plain, old checkmark in a checkbox means you're canceling the checkmark: now I know whom to blame for making all the DMVs I've ever used centers of confusion and delay (and might also explain why you're on so many 'default opt-in' mailing lists).

An unambiguous MARK in the box means, "Yes! Sign me up for your offer! I accept the terms of the following statement! I agree wholeheartedly with the following! I wish the following for myself! I CHOOSE YOU, STATEMENT OF INTENT!" Tick mark, check, X-marks-the-spot, filled-in box; they mean the same thing to the bored clerks perusing your supplications.

And stay the Hell out of my local DMV office when I have to appear there to fufill some required transaction in person. I hate having to wait why some bored bureaucrat has to explain the above to the confused and clueless.

Oh, and sorry to hear about your Grandpa, kid.

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby Dave » Fri Nov 06, 2009 12:14 pm UTC

GreatS wrote:Is it just me, or am I reading it incorrectly:
  • She finds out that something which is dissambled doesn't exist anymore
  • Thus she decides to not become a donor, because she doesn't want to be dissembled (that's a cross, not a tick, right?)


That's exactly how I interpreted it.

In finding out that once the pieces are disassembled, the original form no longer exists, she decides not to be an organ donor and, as such, crosses out the tick.

phlip wrote:Drawing an X in a box is reasonably common way of selecting it... the choice isn't between an x and a tick, rather any mark and no mark.


Whilst I agree with you in terms of how tick boxes/check boxes are dealt with in 'the real world', I imagine it's very difficult to portray that in a single panel of a comic. I think that the intention was to show a tick that has been crossed out - i.e. a yes becomes a no.

Obviously it's open to interpretation, though!

(incidentally, I've only read page 1 of this topic so far, so apologies if this has already been discussed!)

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby zigzagscalawag » Fri Nov 06, 2009 12:16 pm UTC

I got somewhat ninja'ed while debating whether to sign up, but since I already did...

At least where I live, any form of mark in the check box is considered an affirmative response. So running down the possible scenarios, it goes like this:

  1. The box was blank, and she is adding something to it for the first time. First of all, this would mean she affirmed donating an organ. It would also make no sense, since you would use either a check mark or an X, but not both.

  2. The box had a check mark to begin with, and she changed it to an X. If you have already marked your affirmation on the page, there is no easy way to change it. Putting an X is the clearest (if not clear at all) way of showing that you made a mistake. This is also the one that seems to make the most sense to me.

  3. The box had an X to begin with, and she changed it to an... X with a check mark attached? This could mean double affirmation I guess, since even an X is affirmation. Maybe she wants to put a little extra emphasis on it. Realistically though it's as in the first example; there is no reason to put anything in the box if you aren't affirming, and if you have and still agreed there is no reason to add anything further.
So the only answer that makes sense to me is that she put a check mark to indicate assent, changed her mind, and tried to cross it out to indicate this. YMMV.

// Edited for missing words/misspellings. //

moonchild
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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby moonchild » Fri Nov 06, 2009 12:20 pm UTC

Just registered to post this:

"The molecules of your body are the same molecules that make up this station and the nebula outside, that burn inside the stars themselves. We are starstuff, we are the universe made manifest, trying to figure itself out. As we have both learned, sometimes the universe requires a change of perspective."

I am moved by this strip.

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby Lewton » Fri Nov 06, 2009 12:31 pm UTC

You people who think that the point of the comic is that she decided not to be an organ donor are out your minds

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby pyromuffin » Fri Nov 06, 2009 12:38 pm UTC

Idgi, as an atheist and someone who primarily intends to live forever (cryogenic preservation at the very least), this comic has little for me.

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby Mental Mouse » Fri Nov 06, 2009 12:43 pm UTC

"We are but whirlpools in a river of ever-flowing water. We are not stuff that abides, but patterns that perpetuate themselves."
--Norbert Wiener, mathematician


YES. And, (organ donations aside, dammit) "Grandpa" lives on in our hearts. How will others remember you?

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby Sprocket » Fri Nov 06, 2009 1:13 pm UTC

aliosha wrote:Disassemble - anybody reminded of Short Circuit and the fanatic determination to avoid disassembly?
Are you talking about my post, or did you just have the same idea I did two posts after me?
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radtea
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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby radtea » Fri Nov 06, 2009 1:41 pm UTC

At least two people have reached the age where they are intelligent enough to type, surf the 'Net and read XKCD believed the following:

she decides not to be an organ donor and, as such, crosses out the tick


This is an amazing belief, far stranger than a belief in unprovable nonsense like the existence of unicorns, vampires and zombie Jesus, because people who believe this must be repeatedly frustrated and confused that errors are being made in processing their forms. That is, they must get repeated feedback suggesting that something is wrong with their belief, and yet fail to form a new belief based on it. Admittedly, the feedback is subtle and I doubt anyone comes out an tells them the terrible truth, but it's fascinating that they can be quite so far out of the loop despite the aforesaid intelligence. It makes me wonder what similar false beliefs I have!

Public Service Announcement: if you make ANY MARK IN THE BOX, a tick, an ex, a blob, a squiggly line, you are saying "YES, I AGREE!" All that matters is the presence of the mark, not it's shape and not your intent in making it.

No one ever looks at the detailed shape of the mark, and the school teacher who told you that it was the "rule" that you could "cancel the tick mark" was a clueless idiot who has been responsible for much confusion and misery in people's lives.

If you want to "cancel" your mark either ask for a new form, or CIRCLE the whole box and write beside it, "ERROR--PLEASE IGNORE" or something like that. That at least has a chance of being noticed and interpreted correctly. Your "cancelled" tick mark has no chance of being interpreted correctly at all, which is why whenever you do it there is a mysterious error in processing your form. I bet you've wondered about that sometimes, haven't you?

People make fun of those old US army training films on things like "how to take a shower" (I think there are some up on YouTube--check 'em out, they're hilarious) but this kind of thing makes it clear that you really can't have too much public education around basic social norms.
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IIAOPSW
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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby IIAOPSW » Fri Nov 06, 2009 1:45 pm UTC

I was expecting a physics joke on information loss.

where the container would be a black hole...reusing the legos is akin to hawking radiation...i think im messing this up somehow.

Spoiler:
yes i know. information isnt "lost" in hawking radiation it just takes forever to recover it. i refuse to wait 10 billion years to find out how my lego house was originally constructed.

my point is i wasn't expecting the organ doner thing because i was to busy thinking "good point Randall, where does that information go?"

Get back in my head Randall!.
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Faranya
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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby Faranya » Fri Nov 06, 2009 2:10 pm UTC

sithwalrus wrote:Deep comic, I liked it.
I have been planning on donating my organs for ten years, since I was six, if I can save someones life at no personal cost, then it sounds like a win-win situation.
so far in my life, I have never heard someone argue against organ donations, so why do so few people actually make them? (at least in Canada) if someone does not sign to have their organs donated before death, then their families are asked for permission after death, but it seems like a weird system. few people will be focusing on how they can turn a tragic situation into something beneficial when they have just lost a relative, so it would really make more sense to assume that everyone wants their organs donated, and give people the opportunity to decline. this way, if they have no real preference the likelihood of a donation increases.
btw, i am a christian, but as far as the whole eternal life thing goes it really makes no difference to me. I am going to try and live a decent life on earth, and if I get another try somewhere I will take it. whether there is heaven, hell, or the entire world fades into a formless lifeless void, we should all be living our lives with the same ethics and goals anyway.


Actually, the next of kin can overrule your decision to be an organ donor. You still need to ensure that they will follow your wishes (what with you being dead, you will be in no position to argue)

Additionally, I don't know if they would even use my organs anymore. I can't give blood because they fucked up my blood test last time and thought I had HIV until they tested it again as figured out I don't. Despite having perfectly healthy blood, I am no longer permitted to be a blood donor. Too bad.
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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby jarndtnyc » Fri Nov 06, 2009 2:14 pm UTC

"I remembered once, in Japan, having been to see the Gold Pavilion Temple in Kyoto and being mildly surprised at quite how well it had weathered the passage of time since it was first built in the fourteenth century. I was told it hadn't weathered well at all, and had in fact been burnt to the ground twice in this century. "So it isn't the original building?" I had asked my Japanese guide.
"But yes, of course it is," he insisted, rather surprised at my question.
"But it's burnt down?"
"Yes."
"Twice."
"Many times."
"And rebuilt."
"Of course. It is an important and historic building."
"With completely new materials."
"But of course. It was burnt down."
"So how can it be the same building?"
"It is always the same building."
I had to admit to myself that this was in fact a perfectly rational point of view, it merely started from an unexpected premise. The idea of the building, the intention of it, its design, are all immutable and are the essence of the building. The intention of the original builders is what survives. The wood of which the design is constructed decays and is replaced when necessary. To be overly concerned with the original materials, which are merely sentimental souvenirs of the past, is to fail to see the living building itself."
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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby mightymouse1584 » Fri Nov 06, 2009 2:16 pm UTC

There seems to be some confusion regarding the intention on the tick on the back of the license. I think this is because there are different standards throughout the world. In the USA, drivers licenses have a box you can tick in order to mark yourself as an organ donor. In many other countries, the purpose of this box is reversed. In other words, you tick the box in order to exclude yourself from being an organ donor. I think this is true in Australia for example (feel free to correct me if I'm wrong). Hope that clears it up...

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby Faranya » Fri Nov 06, 2009 2:20 pm UTC

zigzagscalawag wrote:I got somewhat ninja'ed while debating whether to sign up, but since I already did...

At least where I live, any form of mark in the check box is considered an affirmative response. So running down the possible scenarios, it goes like this:

  1. The box was blank, and she is adding something to it for the first time. First of all, this would mean she affirmed donating an organ. It would also make no sense, since you would use either a check mark or an X, but not both.

  2. The box had a check mark to begin with, and she changed it to an X. If you have already marked your affirmation on the page, there is no easy way to change it. Putting an X is the clearest (if not clear at all) way of showing that you made a mistake. This is also the one that seems to make the most sense to me.

  3. The box had an X to begin with, and she changed it to an... X with a check mark attached? This could mean double affirmation I guess, since even an X is affirmation. Maybe she wants to put a little extra emphasis on it. Realistically though it's as in the first example; there is no reason to put anything in the box if you aren't affirming, and if you have and still agreed there is no reason to add anything further.
So the only answer that makes sense to me is that she put a check mark to indicate assent, changed her mind, and tried to cross it out to indicate this. YMMV.

// Edited for missing words/misspellings. //


No, the most obvious way of signaling a change from assent to dissent is to cross out the entirety of the question with a line.

That is an x, drawn without particular attention to detail, like most 'X's on a form of that nature.
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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby Quotable » Fri Nov 06, 2009 2:25 pm UTC

Great comic. In high school I wasn't an organ donor because I didn't like the idea of someone chopping up my body after I died. Then I got a little less naive, and realized how much less important my parts will be to me after I die than they will be to someone else.

Semi-deep thoughts aside, the real reason I registered just to post in this thread:
MrD wrote:That was a little harsh.

The girl is quietly playing with her Legos by herself, when her brother comes along and starts asking her simple questions just to contradict her and make her feel small. In response, she sneaks off and signs him up as an organ donor behind his back.

No offense to Randall, great comic, but I found this comment about five times funnier than the comic itself. I was worried I might get in trouble at work for laughing so hard.

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby zigzagscalawag » Fri Nov 06, 2009 2:33 pm UTC

Lewton wrote:You people who think that the point of the comic is that she decided not to be an organ donor are out your minds

Would you be so kind as to substantiate that claim? As stands, you neither offer anything to support your own position or dispute that of others, only saying that those who disagree with your viewpoint are wrong and of unsound judgment. Which tends to come across as trolling on the Internet.

radtea wrote:At least two people have reached the age where they are intelligent enough to type, surf the 'Net and read XKCD believed the following:

she decides not to be an organ donor and, as such, crosses out the tick


This is an amazing belief, far stranger than a belief in unprovable nonsense like the existence of unicorns, vampires and zombie Jesus, because people who believe this must be repeatedly frustrated and confused that errors are being made in processing their forms. That is, they must get repeated feedback suggesting that something is wrong with their belief, and yet fail to form a new belief based on it. Admittedly, the feedback is subtle and I doubt anyone comes out an tells them the terrible truth, but it's fascinating that they can be quite so far out of the loop despite the aforesaid intelligence. It makes me wonder what similar false beliefs I have!

Public Service Announcement: if you make ANY MARK IN THE BOX, a tick, an ex, a blob, a squiggly line, you are saying "YES, I AGREE!" All that matters is the presence of the mark, not it's shape and not your intent in making it.

No one ever looks at the detailed shape of the mark, and the school teacher who told you that it was the "rule" that you could "cancel the tick mark" was a clueless idiot who has been responsible for much confusion and misery in people's lives.

If you want to "cancel" your mark either ask for a new form, or CIRCLE the whole box and write beside it, "ERROR--PLEASE IGNORE" or something like that. That at least has a chance of being noticed and interpreted correctly. Your "cancelled" tick mark has no chance of being interpreted correctly at all, which is why whenever you do it there is a mysterious error in processing your form. I bet you've wondered about that sometimes, haven't you?

People make fun of those old US army training films on things like "how to take a shower" (I think there are some up on YouTube--check 'em out, they're hilarious) but this kind of thing makes it clear that you really can't have too much public education around basic social norms.


So, first of all: argumentum ad hominem and red herring come to mind. I'm not sure why you would bring religion into a discussion on what a check mark represents, unless of course you are trying to imply people who disagree with your position are religious, and religious people are stupid, and therefore wrong. The comparison between religion and vampires and unicorns seems to pretty clearly indicate your disposition towards the former. Either way, it's an entirely uncalled for an inappropriate tack.

Now, with that said. Whether or not marking over your original choice will cancel it or not is utterly irrelevant to whether people in fact do so for that reason, which I believe is what the comic is portraying. Many people cross their fingers hoping for good luck, a practice I believe has no value, and yet I would not dispute that a person drawn with their fingers crossed is doing so for that reason.

The crossing out is a visual shortcut to her change of opinion. This is a comic, not a legal contract. The efficacy of her actions are not relevant, only what they represent.

Also, I would suggest that the comic is meant to be ironic: the build-up is an argument for organ donation, so we expect her to react by wishing to donate, but it has the reverse effect causing her to be against it. You may not all find it funny, but that is basically a joke right there.

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby Joskanathan » Fri Nov 06, 2009 2:34 pm UTC

lol
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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby zigzagscalawag » Fri Nov 06, 2009 2:35 pm UTC

Faranya wrote:[snip]

No, the most obvious way of signaling a change from assent to dissent is to cross out the entirety of the question with a line

That is an x, drawn without particular attention to detail, like most 'X's on a form of that nature.

This is probably true, yes. I rescind my statement then. The larger point still stands that it is meant as a visual cue to her changing opinion, based on the context of the comic.

// Fixed the quote. //
// Really fixed the quote this time. //

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby neoliminal » Fri Nov 06, 2009 2:53 pm UTC

I think the most important lesson of this comic is completely overlooked so far.

The little girl builds a house from lego and then it's disassembled and put away.
Authority figure questions her belief that the house still exists in the box.
Little girl believes authority figure and it changes her way of life.

These are the same basic steps that lead anyone to religion (Christianity, as example.)

Person questions existence.
Authority provides answer to questioned existence.
Person changes way of life.

Note that there is no need to prove anything. People who believe in souls can't prove they do or don't exist and have taken it (the idea of a soul) from some authoritative source. No one is born knowing what a soul is. Someone(s) explains it to them and they believe that person(s). The important point, however, is that it took an authority figure to plant the seed. Almost all faith comes from an authority figure.

The girl takes it on faith that the house no longer exists.
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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby orentago » Fri Nov 06, 2009 3:02 pm UTC

This is brilliant :-)

But of course once you start along this train of thought, where do you stop? Eventually you will end up knowing next to nothing.

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby DVC » Fri Nov 06, 2009 3:11 pm UTC

I seem to have interpreted the comic in the exact opposite way to everyone else.

To me it seemed like she made a tick but then crossed it out.

And I thought she did this because she didn't want to be "gone" when she died. Disassembling the lego blocks was like taking transplant organs out of the body. This was emphasised by the "Where's grandpa" bit. Presumably Grandpa is dead, and the adult figure has told her that while his body isn't alive any more he is alive in heaven or alive in our hearts. But on discovering that when something is disassembled it is gone, she concludes that grandpa is gone too. So, she thinks that if her body is kept together, unlike grandpa, she won't be gone when she dies.

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby sorceror » Fri Nov 06, 2009 3:15 pm UTC

Kaijyuu wrote:The counter argument here would be that the brain is the (for lack of a better term) user interface. You can bust a user interface badly enough that it doesn't work the way you want it to anymore, and it can go totally haywire. They can still be separate without being "meaningless."


Have you had the misfortune to know someone with advanced Alzheimers? Given what obviously gets destroyed when the brain is destroyed... whatever's left for the 'soul' to do, I can't see it as me... or even terribly important. It's not like the brain is a radio tuning in the 'soul frequency' - important stuff like memory, comprehension, awareness - it all happens in the brain.

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby ThemePark » Fri Nov 06, 2009 4:01 pm UTC

glasnt wrote:Is the girl at the end checking the box saying she does what to be an organ donor, or is she changing her answer from yes (hence the over extended line which i think is a tick) to no, she doesn't want to be an organ donor?

Hi glasnt!

I'm pretty sure she is signing up to be an organ donor. IMO, if she was crossing that option out, i.e. deselecting it, she would have to select another option, making two marks which I assume would in most countries be considered invalid, so she would have to fill out a whole new card entirely.

SocialSceneRepairman wrote:
phlip wrote:*Is an organ donor and regular blood donor, in a country that doesn't even pay you for either.*


Why do people from other countries always seem to think this? I think you can get paid for blood if you look, but most people are willing to give for free; if they find out money's changed hands over an organ, it's straight to the garbage. The only things that they'll pay for are eggs and sperm, and I'm not even totally sure about those.

Sperm definitely. Someone hung a poster up at my dorm last month, advocating to earn money on donating sperm. A regular guy, as it said on the poster, could earn about 500 dollars by donating 10 times a month. Lovely.
Last edited by ThemePark on Fri Nov 06, 2009 4:05 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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jozwa
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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby jozwa » Fri Nov 06, 2009 4:04 pm UTC

Okay, after reading the comments I'm just plain confused. I thought she chose to become a donor (years later) because of the conversation. Though why would she still be holding those lego pieces? (And have the same haircut...? Ok, that's probably just to identify her as the same person.) Now I just don't know anymore.
mightymouse1584 wrote:There seems to be some confusion regarding the intention on the tick on the back of the license. I think this is because there are different standards throughout the world.

I'm used to the idea that you put an X in the box to select that option (never seen ticks being used IRL). That's why the first impression I got was that what he said changed (or affected) her opinion and thus she selected to become a donor. And I believe that that's a driving license form she's scribbling there, since many people seem to think that way.

I don't know if this has anything to do with this, but at least in the case of some polls in which a machine is used to read the results from the form and transfer them to the computer, you need to put an X that doesn't cross the boundaries of the box. And if you want to cancel the choice, you need to color the whole box black. And here the marking crosses the boundary (making it invalid?).

Great strip. Really philosophical. This is why I keep reading xkcd.

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Kadzar
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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby Kadzar » Fri Nov 06, 2009 4:06 pm UTC

Geogriffith wrote:
Dad, where is Grandpa right now?

"His source code was forked, backups moved off-site, and merged with a compatible project with similar goals. As was mine, as will yours be, someday."
I claim this for my sig!
Anyway, I think Lego is a brilliant metaphor for the concept of identity. A Lego creation only becomes a spaceship or a castle or whatever when someone assigns a label to it. You can add or subtract pieces, even replace all parts; it will still be the same creation so long as you refer to it as such.
Geogriffith wrote:
Dad, where is Grandpa right now?

"His source code was forked, backups moved off-site, and merged with a compatible project with similar goals. As was mine, as will yours be, someday."
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cream wobbly
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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby cream wobbly » Fri Nov 06, 2009 4:46 pm UTC

Thanks for the reminder, Randall. I'll find time to go and check that box.

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby NagelWithLox » Fri Nov 06, 2009 4:50 pm UTC

With respect, the arrangement is not gone; it is merely stored in a different format. Previously the pattern existed in the Legos and also in the mind of the builder; the latter retains it even if the former does not. Redundancy is good that way.

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby ttremblay » Fri Nov 06, 2009 5:04 pm UTC

I hate all people who think she's "crossing out" the organ donor selection.

I mark all check-boxes with an "x". If anyone in their right mind thought an "x" in a checkbox meant "No, I dont want this" I dont think I would have a birth certificate, passport, SAT Score, or license.

Is it difficult being so completely wrong about something so simple?

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby Duban » Fri Nov 06, 2009 5:10 pm UTC

That's really deep. Good one Randall.
It is not the gods I fear. No, It is those who claim to speak for them that concern me.

metatron5369
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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby metatron5369 » Fri Nov 06, 2009 5:30 pm UTC

This is how I feel about transporters in "Star Trek". :?

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Re: "Lego" Discussion

Postby DragonHawk » Fri Nov 06, 2009 5:44 pm UTC

I came here just to mention Larry Niven's "organ donor problem". (Although props to the person who posted the Babylon 5 quote.) Anyway, Niven pointed out a few decades ago that as medical technology advances, it will become more and more practical to extend life using organ transplants. The demand for organs will continue to rise. At the same time, population continues to rise. We have too many people and not enough organs. Consequences: (1) "Organlegging" (like bootlegging) will become a serious and common problem. (2) There will be pressure to mandate harvesting organs from criminals sentences to death. That will in turn lead to pressure to increase death penalty sentences. By the events in the story "The Jigsaw Man",
Spoiler:
speeding and failure to stop for a red light
have become capital crimes.

Larry Niven rocks.
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