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News in brief

Posted: Thu Mar 15, 2007 6:32 pm UTC
by Felstaff
Interesting, topical, and irreverent news stories that demand discussion, but not enough to warrant a new thread*.

Other places you can post your news and/or article in:
  • If it's a funny, light, humorous, cute, sweet, uplifting, cheery or otherwise warmth-inducing news story, post it here.
  • If it's a melancholic, dark, uncomical, unpleasant, bitter, downhearted, unhappy, or otherwise fear-inducing news story, try here.
  • If it's about the death of a noteworthy person, try here.
  • If it's a news item about something that is indistinguishable from magic, try here.
*If discussion prolonged enough to become newthreadworthy, it can easily be split out into a new thread by the mods. Simply report the first post on the subject, and request that the thread to be split out.

Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Posted: Tue Nov 22, 2016 4:39 am UTC
by Mambrino
Not humorous, but "etc" and not sure if dark enough for Darker news thread:
New 'brief' thread created ~~Felstaff

BBC: German court acquits 'Sharia Police' in Wuppertal

BBC wrote:A German court has ruled that seven Muslim men who formed a Sharia street patrol did not break laws against political uniforms.

The group sparked outrage in the western city of Wuppertal in 2014, when they approached people in orange vests bearing the words "Sharia Police".

They demanded that locals stop gambling, listening to music, and drinking alcohol.

..

So-called "Sharia patrols" by ultra-conservative Muslim men have been seen in other European cities including London, Copenhagen and Hamburg.


...confused feelings about this.

Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Posted: Tue Nov 22, 2016 5:48 am UTC
by CorruptUser
Technically, it's free speech. On the one hand, if you don't believe in a freedom for the people you don't like you don't believe in said freedom in the first place. On the other hand, if the freedom ends up being twisted into "restrict others' freedoms", empty platitudes are just that, and I don't feel any remorse if the courts trample all over those "rights".

Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Posted: Tue Nov 22, 2016 6:20 am UTC
by sardia
CorruptUser wrote:Technically, it's free speech. On the one hand, if you don't believe in a freedom for the people you don't like you don't believe in said freedom in the first place. On the other hand, if the freedom ends up being twisted into "restrict others' freedoms", empty platitudes are just that, and I don't feel any remorse if the courts trample all over those "rights".

Yes, there are authoritarian groups out there seeking to use democratic elections/freedoms to gain power, but this isn't why they were acquitted. The court stated that the law is used only for nazis. They weren't nazis, so the law didn't apply. Not quite sure how this is humorous though.

Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Posted: Tue Nov 22, 2016 6:34 am UTC
by CorruptUser
The law was originally created to target neo-nazis, but you don't have to be one to be hit by it, just using a uniform that is in the article's words "suggestively militant or intimidating". So while the "Sharia Police" are giant piles of excrement, their uniforms weren't illegal, therefore they were acquitted.

Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Posted: Tue Nov 22, 2016 7:18 am UTC
by speising
Their unifprms looked more like those of red cross workers, so not that intimidating. I guss they still intimidated some people, though.

Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Posted: Tue Nov 22, 2016 11:53 am UTC
by Diadem
Yeah I get why they were acquitted based on this particular law, but what about other laws? Surely intimidation is illegal, with or without uniforms. I suppose if people are allowed to call themselves 'fashion police' and tell people what to wear, then you should be allowed to call yourself 'sharia police' and tell people not to gamble. But you should never be allowed to do so in a way that resembles actual police, or in an intimidating way.

Also this is Germany, not the United States. There are far more restrictions on speech in Germany. I'm surprised this kind of stuff doesn't fall under the ban on spreading hate.

Re: In other news... (humorous news items)

Posted: Tue Nov 22, 2016 12:40 pm UTC
by Felstaff
Found a cure for the etc. problem of the humorous news thread: New sticky thread created. And you're all in it!

Re: News in brief

Posted: Tue Nov 22, 2016 12:46 pm UTC
by sardia
Why is it stickied? Doesn't seem more special than the other three threads.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Tue Nov 22, 2016 1:09 pm UTC
by Felstaff
It's topic-generic, the others are topic-specific. Helps users filter. Standard stickeroo fare.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Tue Nov 22, 2016 6:04 pm UTC
by KnightExemplar
Trump breaks another campaign promise: https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics ... ge%2Fstory

I'm glad to see he's not a total nutjob. But I know a chunk of people who actually did want to "Lock her up".

Side note: The 2016 Presidential election is over... so I really don't feel like talking about post-election stuff in that thread. If the mods disagree, I'm willing to comply of course.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Wed Nov 23, 2016 7:10 am UTC
by Mambrino
KnightExemplar wrote:Trump breaks another campaign promise: https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics ... ge%2Fstory

I'm glad to see he's not a total nutjob. But I know a chunk of people who actually did want to "Lock her up".

Side note: The 2016 Presidential election is over... so I really don't feel like talking about post-election stuff in that thread. If the mods disagree, I'm willing to comply of course.


Well my suggestion is to rename "the aftermath" thread, like with the Brexit election thread.

On the other hand, I'd be slightly amused if we had "The Trump Thread" on the frontpage for the next four years...

Re: News in brief

Posted: Wed Nov 23, 2016 5:11 pm UTC
by Zamfir
Consider it the "American politics" thread if that feels better. In the time it takes me to change a topic title, you guys usually start already with the next election preparations.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Mon Nov 28, 2016 2:36 am UTC
by Mambrino
France: the conservative presidential candidate is Francois Fillon

He is proposing dramatic economic reforms that include slashing 500,000 public jobs, ending the 35-hour week, raising the retirement age and scrapping the wealth tax.


Aren't French unions still a considerable force? This might turn out nasty.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Mon Nov 28, 2016 9:30 pm UTC
by KnightExemplar
https://medium.com/@JohnTeasdale/how-we ... .71a4sbp8i

TLDR: in late 2015, a kickstarter group tried to make a card game about the Presidential Election. The above article covers a lot of ground... such as China vs US manufacturing, Kickstarter optimism, the nature of debt, the efficacy of marketing... a lot of the stuff that may come in handy when running a business.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Thu Dec 01, 2016 11:15 am UTC
by elasto
A single dose of psilocybin, the active ingredient of magic mushrooms, can lift the anxiety and depression experienced by people with advanced cancer for six months or even longer, two new studies show.

Researchers involved in the two trials in the United States say the results are remarkable. The volunteers had “profoundly meaningful and spiritual experiences” which made most of them rethink life and death, ended their despair and brought about lasting improvement in the quality of their lives.

Around 40-50% of newly diagnosed cancer patients suffer some sort of depression or anxiety. Antidepressants have little effect, particularly on the “existential” depression that can lead some to feel their lives are meaningless and contemplate suicide.

The main findings of the NYU study, which involved 29 patients, and the larger one from Johns Hopkins University with 51 patients, that a single dose of the medication can lead to immediate reduction in the depression and anxiety caused by cancer and that the effect can last up to eight months, “is unprecedented,” said Ross. “We don’t have anything like it.”

The results of the studies were very similar, with around 80% of the patients attributing moderately or greatly improved wellbeing or life satisfaction to a single high dose of the drug, given with psychotherapy support.

Professor Roland Griffiths, of the departments of psychiatry and neuroscience who led the study at Johns Hopkins University school of medicine, said he did not expect the findings, which he described as remarkable. “I am bred as a sceptic. I was sceptical at the outset that this drug could produce long-lasting changes,” he said. These were people “facing the deepest existential questions that humans can encounter - what is the nature of life and death, the meaning of life.”

But the results were similar to those they had found in earlier studies in healthy volunteers. “In spite of their unique vulnerability and the mood disruption that the illness and contemplation of their death has prompted, these participants have the same kind of experiences, that are deeply meaningful, spiritually significant and producing enduring positive changes in life and mood and behaviour,” he said.


Governments need to get over their puritanical fear of mind altering drugs - as well as end this nonsensical division between 'acceptable' mood altering drugs and 'unacceptable' ones...

link

Re: News in brief

Posted: Thu Dec 01, 2016 5:54 pm UTC
by KnightExemplar
Sun / Oracle's Solaris Operating System has been canned. 11.4 is the final version.

https://www.thelayoff.com/t/KBEVoB1

There seems to be a number of IT or Programmers on this forum, so I thought I'd share the news.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Thu Dec 01, 2016 6:02 pm UTC
by Mutex
Pretty sure that's a hoax? I don't see any mention of it anywhere else. And it was posted three days ago.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Thu Dec 01, 2016 6:27 pm UTC
by KnightExemplar
Mutex wrote:Pretty sure that's a hoax? I don't see any mention of it anywhere else. And it was posted three days ago.


It seems to pass the smell-test however.

Major companies have switched to Linux (Red Hat or Ubuntu), and the smaller tech-savvy companies have switched to Illumos (a fork of OpenSolaris). Ever since Oracle pulled an "Oracle" and close-sourced Solaris (wtf?) its been on a dying trend.

When Linux on Sparc outruns Solaris on Sparc... it really makes you wonder... why not just use Linux?

Re: News in brief

Posted: Fri Dec 02, 2016 4:26 am UTC
by Mambrino
Hollande won't seek re-election.

Putin addressed the nation in a yearly speech

BBC wrote:Avoiding anti-Western rhetoric - by Sarah Rainsford in Moscow:

This was a speech short on slogans and snappy soundbites. If there was a theme, then it was one of unity.

It was a call to Russians to pull together as patriots, in what Vladimir Putin admitted were still extraordinary, tough economic times.

He has long tried to achieve that by highlighting Russia's external enemies. But with a potential US ally now on his way to the White House - and perhaps sniffing an end to sanctions - Mr Putin has toned down his rhetoric.

In fact, he pushed international affairs right to the end of his speech and talked of needing friends, not enemies.


I can't find a source right now, but I've heard Russia will run out of their oil money "under the mattress" in about a year if nothing changes.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Fri Dec 02, 2016 4:45 am UTC
by sardia
Mambrino wrote:Hollande won't seek re-election.
Putin addressed the nation in a yearly speech
BBC wrote:Avoiding anti-Western rhetoric - by Sarah Rainsford in Moscow:
This was a speech short on slogans and snappy soundbites. If there was a theme, then it was one of unity.
It was a call to Russians to pull together as patriots, in what Vladimir Putin admitted were still extraordinary, tough economic times.
He has long tried to achieve that by highlighting Russia's external enemies. But with a potential US ally now on his way to the White House - and perhaps sniffing an end to sanctions - Mr Putin has toned down his rhetoric.
In fact, he pushed international affairs right to the end of his speech and talked of needing friends, not enemies.

I can't find a source right now, but I've heard Russia will run out of their oil money "under the mattress" in about a year if nothing changes.

You're probably referring to one of their many many reserve/rainy day funds.
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world ... 13236.html
They have additional funds, like their pension/long term funds as well ad their currency reserves and SRDs. It's not pretty, but you need to think of it this way. Russia budgets for $50/barrel oil. Compare that to oil's price averaged across the year. That's how bad/good Russia is doing.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Sat Dec 03, 2016 4:06 pm UTC
by morriswalters
The Snowmobile, a semi-truck with 100 petabytes (or 100 million gigabytes) of storage. I have got to have one of these.Image

Re: News in brief

Posted: Sat Dec 03, 2016 4:11 pm UTC
by Mutex
You could drive to work and have your entire music collection with you to listen to.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Sun Dec 04, 2016 5:30 pm UTC
by Liri
Thank goodness, Austria.

It's largely a ceremonial position, but hopefully it heralds general defeat for the Freedom Party in coming elections.

Austria, of all places.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Sun Dec 04, 2016 9:06 pm UTC
by ThemePark
morriswalters wrote:The Snowmobile, a semi-truck with 100 petabytes (or 100 million gigabytes) of storage. I have got to have one of these.Image

I'm in love.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Sun Dec 04, 2016 9:47 pm UTC
by Thesh
Mutex wrote:You could drive to work and have your entire music collection with you to listen to.


I think you are understating the amount of storage this has. Not only could you have your entire music collection with you, but your entire book collection as well.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Sun Dec 04, 2016 11:16 pm UTC
by Mutex
Thesh wrote:
Mutex wrote:You could drive to work and have your entire music collection with you to listen to.


I think you are understating the amount of storage this has. Not only could you have your entire music collection with you, but your entire book collection as well.


*head explodes*

Re: News in brief

Posted: Mon Dec 05, 2016 8:45 am UTC
by ThemePark
You could also upload the Library of Congress several times over, or have quite a few human brains uploaded to that truck.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Mon Dec 05, 2016 1:18 pm UTC
by pseudoidiot
And still room for a bit of porn.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Mon Dec 05, 2016 1:45 pm UTC
by morriswalters
It ain't what you do with it. It's that it exists.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Mon Dec 05, 2016 9:29 pm UTC
by Diadem
Mutex wrote:You could drive to work and have your entire music collection with you to listen to.

Only if your music collection is tiny.

To bring along a recording of all speech ever spoken by every human being ever you'd need nearly half a million of such trucks. So clearly this truck is utterly insufficient.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Mon Dec 05, 2016 10:23 pm UTC
by WibblyWobbly
Diadem wrote:
Mutex wrote:You could drive to work and have your entire music collection with you to listen to.

Only if your music collection is tiny.

To bring along a recording of all speech ever spoken by every human being ever you'd need nearly half a million of such trucks. So clearly this truck is utterly insufficient.

I hear you. We clearly need to think bigger. An artificial satellite, perhaps? Not sure how we're going to hook up to it, but Amazon will think of something. Might need something better than USB, though. Plus, while we're at it, we could put one of those big laser thingies on it. Store all human knowledge and deal with that pesky Rebel Alliance at the same time!

The Amazon SnowGlobe. Big Data has just gone gravitational.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Mon Dec 05, 2016 11:17 pm UTC
by PeteP

Re: News in brief

Posted: Sat Dec 10, 2016 1:02 pm UTC
by Dauric
I've done the call-center thing, I've got a friend who's the IT lead at a call center, seen the burnout, been burned out myself.

This article from NPR caught my eye.

Christina Maslach is a professor of psychology at Berkeley. She's been studying burnout for years. She says companies often look at it wrong.

CHRISTINA MASLACH: To somehow characterize it as it's something within the person. All the research is pointing to the fact it's something about the situation, the social relationships, the job.


The article goes on to describe how one small company's call center has been fighting burnout and managed to reduce their employee attrition rate.

Figured this would be useful info for anyone who's seeing burnout in their offices, or feeling it themselves.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Sat Dec 10, 2016 6:12 pm UTC
by CorruptUser
Jobs are like girlfriends/boyfriends. Interviews are dating. If people keep quitting you, the problem is you, not them.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Sat Dec 10, 2016 6:28 pm UTC
by Mambrino
CorruptUser wrote:Jobs are like girlfriends/boyfriends. Interviews are dating. If people keep quitting you, the problem is you, not them.


It's quite rare nowadays that you are dependent on your spouse's monies to eat and have a roof over your head, and that's a situation which creates a possibility for terrible relationship, especially so if the spouse considers you an exchangeable tool for their purposes.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Sat Dec 10, 2016 7:58 pm UTC
by sardia
Mambrino wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:Jobs are like girlfriends/boyfriends. Interviews are dating. If people keep quitting you, the problem is you, not them.


It's quite rare nowadays that you are dependent on your spouse's monies to eat and have a roof over your head, and that's a situation which creates a possibility for terrible relationship, especially so if the spouse considers you an exchangeable tool for their purposes.

Your analogy starts to breakdown since most spouses don't run background or immigration checks. Or are especially biased against felons.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Sat Dec 10, 2016 11:48 pm UTC
by CorruptUser
Really? Quite sure most people don't want to date an ex con if they can avoid it.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Sun Dec 11, 2016 1:02 am UTC
by sardia
CorruptUser wrote:Really? Quite sure most people don't want to date an ex con if they can avoid it.

And how would they know that? Remember, no background checks.

Re: News in brief

Posted: Sun Dec 11, 2016 2:01 am UTC
by Soupspoon
You might know if you first met them when being assigned to the same cell... :P