NaraVara's recent activity

  1. Comment on Gender and right-wing extremism in America: Why understanding women’s roles is key to preventing future acts of domestic terrorism in ~misc

    NaraVara
    Link
    Good article on the roles women play in extremist groups and how law enforcement biases tend to ignore or overlook them when figuring out risks.

    Good article on the roles women play in extremist groups and how law enforcement biases tend to ignore or overlook them when figuring out risks.

    Mounting evidence from the Jan. 6, 2021 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol shows that women are playing a key and sometimes violent role in the right-wing extremist movement. Yet the failure of U.S. law enforcement to understand gender dynamics within these groups, and how women are radicalized in ways that might be different from men, makes the United States vulnerable to further violence. Based on our experiences in government, we are concerned about the lack of focus on women in the growing domestic right-wing extremist movement. The Biden administration has an opportunity and responsibility to ensure that, as it continues its 100-day review of the domestic violent extremism threat, the role of gender is incorporated into law enforcement’s analysis of the events of Jan. 6 and in all future efforts to prevent and respond to further incidents of domestic terrorism.

    1 vote
  2. Comment on Reddit announces online presence indicators in ~tech

    NaraVara
    Link Parent
    Is it full of people worth talking to though? I've found many of the bigger hobbyist subs I used to frequent are basically full of noobs who don't know much past the entry level stuff. I can't...

    is still one if not the biggest history communities online.

    Is it full of people worth talking to though? I've found many of the bigger hobbyist subs I used to frequent are basically full of noobs who don't know much past the entry level stuff.

    I can't speak for /r/History, but /r/Hinduism is just total garbage. Anyone who knew what they were talking about left ages ago and at this point the only content on there is people asking "I need help on a term paper" level questions or fundamentalists posting vaguely dog-whistling content to skirt a ban. And the mods are basically AFK.

    At this point any useful questions I check a Hinduism stack exchange because it at least has people who have read the relevant material.

    2 votes
  3. Comment on What did the Romans think about Race? in ~humanities

    NaraVara
    Link
    Come for the history about Rome. Stay for the explanation of how different the modern conception of "Race" is from ancient ones. This is actually useful for understanding political tensions around...

    Come for the history about Rome. Stay for the explanation of how different the modern conception of "Race" is from ancient ones.

    This is actually useful for understanding political tensions around the world today in civilizations that pre-date Western conceptions of race. For example, caste in India, ethnic groups in China and Africa, etc.

    2 votes
  4. Comment on Reddit announces online presence indicators in ~tech

  5. Comment on Against child hostages in ~misc

    NaraVara
    Link
    Provocative title, but also pretty evocative. It's full of some really stark lines excoriating contemporary thinking in political circles around welfare spending.

    Provocative title, but also pretty evocative. It's full of some really stark lines excoriating contemporary thinking in political circles around welfare spending.

    The fact of the matter is that the United States does not actually have a durable social compact. It’s been unspooling for decades. But it’s not because we let takers free-ride off makers by soaking up TANF benefits without putting in a solid shift at Dollar General. It’s because we’ve insisted on a market economy that makes it easy for already relatively well-off people to get even better-off while exposing the rest of us to the dislocations of globalized trade and the “disruptions” of innovation, but without a functioning system of social insurance that puts a floor on the miseries of poverty.

    8 votes
  6. Comment on Reddit announces online presence indicators in ~tech

    NaraVara
    (edited )
    Link Parent
    What threaded chats with voting ended up doing was lowering barriers to entry by preventing the formation of power-user cliques. In the old days you would have to lurk for a bit and work your way...

    What threaded chats with voting ended up doing was lowering barriers to entry by preventing the formation of power-user cliques. In the old days you would have to lurk for a bit and work your way up the forum pecking order before anything you said was taken seriously. Lots of forums would shit on you for having a low post-count no matter what you said.

    Reddit killed the old forums by being designed so that couldn't happen. It did "democratize" participation that way, but ended up being an object lesson in the perils of mob rule and too much democracy.

    5 votes
  7. Comment on Reddit announces online presence indicators in ~tech

    NaraVara
    Link Parent
    What I find most perplexing is that between Discord, ClubHouse, Facebook Groups, etc. Reddit is the worst at being a chat program. Why give up the unique offering you have just to be a really...

    What I find most perplexing is that between Discord, ClubHouse, Facebook Groups, etc. Reddit is the worst at being a chat program. Why give up the unique offering you have just to be a really shitty, bootleg version of what everyone else is doing?

    I am of the opinion that being a chat program is a feature, not a product. Reddit doesn't seem to have any idea what it's core product is anymore. Stuff that would have been discovered via Reddit I tend to find elsewhere these days. Webcomic artists already shifted to Instagram and Twitter and they're now migrating off that into Patreon and WebToons. Even reddit's one-time core strength as a place to share and find dank memes seems to be better served by Discord groups and Twitter lists now.

    The saddest thing of all, I find more stuff worth reading on Digg nowadays than I find on Reddit anymore.

    27 votes
  8. Comment on Thoughts on running online communities from the creator of Improbable Island in ~tech

    NaraVara
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    I'm curious why the temp-ban seems to have disappeared from the moderator's toolbox in modern discussion spaces. This was my bread and butter when I moderated a large political discussion forum in...

    I'm curious why the temp-ban seems to have disappeared from the moderator's toolbox in modern discussion spaces. This was my bread and butter when I moderated a large political discussion forum in the aughts. 1-hour bans were pretty standard when things got heated and 24 hour bans were no uncommon. Week-long bans were used on occasion but we only really broke out the perma-ban stick when nothing else worked.

    Yeah I get that a lot of people react so badly to any sort of administrative action that they're basically guaranteed to be toxic when their ban expires, but I think this is largely a result of online culture being so anti-authoritarian that they take it personally. It's also a pretty straightforward problem to solve. If they don't learn after a temp-ban they get perma-banned. As long as the reasons for the ban are made clear and put forward publicly it's obvious to everyone what happened and why.

    On our site just about everyone got banned from time to time, and even moderators would occasionally get side-channel talking-tos by other mods if they needed to cool off, eventually culminating in warnings by site admins to check themselves or lose their mod powers. The lower long-term cost of a temp-ban is nice because it allowed to hold a firmer line on where the actual boundaries are while defaulting to perma-bans encourages mods to let things slide when well-respected members of the community do them which allows the overall tone to degrade.

    8 votes
  9. Comment on What technology is going to "come home" in the future? in ~talk

    NaraVara
    (edited )
    Link Parent
    Materials science mostly. There's only so much you can do with shaped plastic alone. Most things we use are either more complicated, require assembly in addition to having formed parts, or require...

    Do you see the possibility that the way 3D printing works could change significantly in the next 30 years or so? Or is that unlikely for some fundamental reason?

    Materials science mostly. There's only so much you can do with shaped plastic alone. Most things we use are either more complicated, require assembly in addition to having formed parts, or require a mix of materials. You can get as good as you want at the actual printing directly, but I can't see much domestic/household use for most of what it does without some additional expertise in how to use it and do the supplemental assembly work. It's the same way people could technically do woodworking at home too, but it's actually quite hard to learn the requisite skills to do it at a high level, and the power tools are expensive and take up a ton of space. Plus there's the concern around non-biodegradable plastic waste if you have a bunch of amateurs going through making baubles without any idea what they're doing.

    Printers are a good example actually. It's almost a cliche how much people hate their household printers. They only reason they have them is because there's critical bureaucratic functions that printers can provide and people often need them in a hurry. But despite that people are increasingly foregoing owning home printers to print out of their offices. The damn things jam constantly and are difficult to user repair if you buy cheaper models, and the ink is so finnicky and expensive to replace that they functionally have surprisingly high upkeep costs.

    1 vote
  10. Comment on Is building a folding iPhone possible? Let's take a closer look at these flexible amoled screens I found on AliExpress in ~tech

    NaraVara
    Link Parent
    The evidence is the fact that there aren't widely available commercial models. I unlock my phone by having it look at me. One of the biggest frustrations in pandemic life has been the fact that I...

    then please actually provide evidence of that rather than just waving them off "as a tech demo for a CES booth" or implying that they don't actually work.

    The evidence is the fact that there aren't widely available commercial models. I unlock my phone by having it look at me. One of the biggest frustrations in pandemic life has been the fact that I can't do this when I leave my house anymore. Neither of these have anything to do with the actual loss in utility inherent in not being able to use my phone while I have a cup of coffee in my hand or need a hand free to hold onto the railing while riding the bus.

    Aside from all that, why be so negative?

    Because poorly thought out tech demos are too often used as red herrings to distract from actually transformative ways to improve things. They generally serve only to separate people from their money and then collect dust in a drawer before ending up in a landfill as eWaste.

  11. Comment on Is building a folding iPhone possible? Let's take a closer look at these flexible amoled screens I found on AliExpress in ~tech

    NaraVara
    Link Parent
    There’s a difference between existing as a tech demo for a CES booth and existing as a real object that’s used day-to-day. In the concept demo stage you get to only think about the core cool...

    There’s a difference between existing as a tech demo for a CES booth and existing as a real object that’s used day-to-day. In the concept demo stage you get to only think about the core cool concept and not about what you’re trading off in terms of price, durability, usability, battery, etc.

    Like it’s not actually that handy to need to have two hands free so you can unfurl your phone before using it. Stuff that seems cool in the concept stage often ends up being kind of annoying or lame in practice.

    1 vote
  12. Comment on Is building a folding iPhone possible? Let's take a closer look at these flexible amoled screens I found on AliExpress in ~tech

    NaraVara
    Link Parent
    Unless you’re wearing really baggy cargo pockets I’m not sure an iPad folded up into the size of an iPhone would be very comfortable in the pocket either. It would be heavy, fat, and very inferior...

    Unless you’re wearing really baggy cargo pockets I’m not sure an iPad folded up into the size of an iPhone would be very comfortable in the pocket either. It would be heavy, fat, and very inferior to an iPad in terms of battery life and performance.

    You might as well just have a second screen used as an airplay display while keeping the phone itself in your pocket.

    1 vote
  13. Comment on Is building a folding iPhone possible? Let's take a closer look at these flexible amoled screens I found on AliExpress in ~tech

    NaraVara
    Link Parent
    You wouldn’t be able to interact with it by touch in that case. If it’s rollable it’s going to be more flexible, but precise touch interfaces require the surface to be fairly rigid.

    You wouldn’t be able to interact with it by touch in that case. If it’s rollable it’s going to be more flexible, but precise touch interfaces require the surface to be fairly rigid.

  14. Comment on Is building a folding iPhone possible? Let's take a closer look at these flexible amoled screens I found on AliExpress in ~tech

    NaraVara
    Link Parent
    If you fold it the phone still takes up the same amount of space, just along a different dimension. In fact, it takes up more space since you need to design to accommodate a hinge and lose all the...

    A foldable screen lets the phone takes up as much space in my pocket as a regular phone

    If you fold it the phone still takes up the same amount of space, just along a different dimension. In fact, it takes up more space since you need to design to accommodate a hinge and lose all the real estate along the hinge where you can’t have any circuits go through or any battery.

    You’d get more screen by having a miniaturized projector or a pair of goggles you stick on your face anyway.

    2 votes
  15. Comment on What technology is going to "come home" in the future? in ~talk

    NaraVara
    Link Parent
    Yeah. For this reason I just can’t see home 3D printing being viable. What I do see being viable is micro-manufacturing creating space for small businesses to generate parts on a smaller scale...

    Yeah. For this reason I just can’t see home 3D printing being viable. What I do see being viable is micro-manufacturing creating space for small businesses to generate parts on a smaller scale than is done now. Instead of needing a large factory to produce things at scale, you can have smaller shops catering to needs on a local level. They’d have just enough scale to be able to use heavier duty equipment and combine it with certain things that need more skilled tradesmen, like welding or machining, to make more things and serve more complex needs than printed plastic can serve.

    1 vote
  16. Comment on I'm working on creating a new religion. You may read the beta version of our scripture at disciples.technoslug.org in ~talk

    NaraVara
    (edited )
    Link Parent
    In my experience as a Hindu, I find a lot of Western pagan reconstruction movements (like Wicca) tend to still bring in a fair amount of "Abrahamicness" into how they interpret pagan religious...

    In my experience as a Hindu, I find a lot of Western pagan reconstruction movements (like Wicca) tend to still bring in a fair amount of "Abrahamicness" into how they interpret pagan religious practices that can get in the way of really understanding what the lived experience and worldview of a pagan practicioner would have been. You have to empty your cup before you can refill it. Otherwise you just get some sludgy mish-mash of random musings instead of a coherent practice or framework. The Dalai Lama talked about this once.

    The key thing to remember is that religious practice is not a list of received dogma that you have to memorize and follow. That's a very distinctively Abrahamic perspective on what religion is. Pagan traditions were much more focused on orthopraxy rather than orthodoxy. That is to say, correct behavior and attitude is more important than correct belief and it's taken as a given that nobody really knows what the objectively "correct" belief is, just varying levels of learned people trying their best. No given expression of them is meant to be taken as being "eternal" and "unchanging" the way Abrahamic religions relate to their scriptures. These were oral traditions that were transmitted and adapted as they were performed over time. What they represent is the way people throughout time have related to these sort of Platonic forms and concepts. What they can do for you is provide a way to get out of your own head and the necessarily narrow frameworks of your specific time and place and connect to something grander that spans eras and generations. In so doing, you develop a sensitivity to broader and deeper ways of understanding things.

    The key thing is that these religions are an agglomeration of traditions and stories that have come down through the ages. It is in the nature of Gods and spirits to evolve and adapt to suit our relationships to the underlying concepts they represent. You can't approach it like you already have fixed beliefs about how things work and then finding a set of scriptures with the right catechism that agrees with your existing beliefs. The whole point is that you're connecting to and participating in a tradition. Things aren't "meant" to be read any way and stories don't "assume" anything. The stories you hear are presented to you as something to observe and sit with your feelings on. The teachings related to those stories are the observations of wise elders on different ways you can learn from and apply the lessons of those stories but they aren't conclusive or definitive, they vary in applicability based on your circumstances. They're not meant to be a consistent dogma for everyone to follow. They represent different streams of thought and practice within a broader spiritual tradition. You have to fully understand and absorb all of it before you can start riffing on it.

    10 votes
  17. Comment on Kena: Bridge of Spirits gameplay trailer in ~games

    NaraVara
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    This game looks pretty dope.

    This game looks pretty dope.

    1 vote