arp242's recent activity

  1. Comment on "Can Biden beat Trump?" in ~news

    arp242
    Link Parent
    As someone coming from a multi-party democracy, the whole two-party system in the US (and to lesser degree, UK) and local representatives seems rather dysfunctional to me. I agree the other issues...

    As someone coming from a multi-party democracy, the whole two-party system in the US (and to lesser degree, UK) and local representatives seems rather dysfunctional to me. I agree the other issues are probably bigger ones though.

    6 votes
  2. Comment on "Can Biden beat Trump?" in ~news

    arp242
    Link Parent
    I don't think it is irrelevant; I think it's a sign that the democratic system isn't working well. Also see my other comment on this story.

    I don't think it is irrelevant; I think it's a sign that the democratic system isn't working well. Also see my other comment on this story.

    8 votes
  3. Comment on I have coronavirus and I'll be fine, and so will about 97% of people infected. Please stop the hysteria and focus on the 3% at serious risk in ~health.coronavirus

    arp242
    Link Parent
    "Thousands of people dying" sounds like a lot, but given that the world population is about 7.8 billion it's comparatively little. Our brains aren't very good at dealing with those kind of numbers...

    "Thousands of people dying" sounds like a lot, but given that the world population is about 7.8 billion it's comparatively little. Our brains aren't very good at dealing with those kind of numbers but "thousands of people" really isn't really all that much.

    Since the second world war the Western world hasn't really had to deal with any serious calamity (which was fairly limited outside of Europe, given the lack of civilian casualties from non-European allies) so I think we've kind of lost perspective that for most of human history it was quite normal to have a lot of people die from things like disease and famine.

    This is, of course, not a bad thing and doesn't mean I'm against (potentially sweeping) measures to prevent the spread, but at the same time we should remain level-headed, realistic, and "don't panic".

    1 vote
  4. Comment on "Can Biden beat Trump?" in ~news

    arp242
    Link Parent
    I think a lot of people have just given up on politics. Obama didn't give us the "change" he promised in 2008 (which is not 100% Obama's fault) and then there's this Trump person. People have...

    I think a lot of people have just given up on politics. Obama didn't give us the "change" he promised in 2008 (which is not 100% Obama's fault) and then there's this Trump person. People have become cynical and apathetic.

    This is a really bad thing, because it does matter in ways that aren't immediately obvious in most people's day-to-day lives.

    7 votes
  5. Comment on "Can Biden beat Trump?" in ~news

    arp242
    Link Parent
    Just because people are voting for him doesn't mean people "want him"; I think those are two different things. While there are certainly people who "want" Biden, I suspect that he's drawing quite...

    Just because people are voting for him doesn't mean people "want him"; I think those are two different things. While there are certainly people who "want" Biden, I suspect that he's drawing quite a lot of strategic votes too.

    8 votes
  6. Comment on "Can Biden beat Trump?" in ~news

    arp242
    (edited )
    Link Parent
    If the vote had happened on a different day, or if the weather had been different, or if the leading news story from the previous day had been something else, Clinton might have won. Essentially,...

    If the vote had happened on a different day, or if the weather had been different, or if the leading news story from the previous day had been something else, Clinton might have won. Essentially, a vote is just a blessed poll.

    This is why I don't like these kind of massive "A or B" votes ("Clinton or Trump?", "Brexit or remain?") because they're so simplistic and don't represent the views of a lot of voters. Turns out that a lot of people's views are nuanced and complex; who knew?

    Voting on a party in a multi-party democracy with a culture of coalitions is a lot better, IMHO, although still not perfect and does have its own downsides (see e.g. Belgium for an extreme example).

    I think we need to radically rethink our democratic system in Western countries to be more democratic. Some say that I say this just because I don't like the outcome of these elections, which is true, but I think a good case can be made that making such a large change as Brexit based on a small minority is not very democratic. There was no option to vote "I want to remain in the EU but with changes X, Y, and Z".

    My own view is that asking everyone for an opinion is misguided. As a voter, I need to be informed about the EU, economics, education, law, foreign relations, science, etc., etc., etc. This is essentially impossible for most people (including myself) even with the best of intentions.

    Instead, asking a randomly chosen subset of citizens (perhaps 100, maybe more, maybe less) who are given the time and resources to actually study the matter in-depth would be better, more or less similar like a jury trail. This is also how democracy worked in ancient Athens. There are a bunch of different ways to do this, but this seems like a much more constructive way to do democracy.

    Not everyone will get their say every time. That's okay, you don't need to weigh in on every decision; you're really not that important. And ideally the system is done in such a way that everyone will get to have a say at least once in their lives (although I'm not sure how feasible that is given the size of the US).

    Guess the comment got side-tracked a bit, but to conclude I think the current political system is broken and Trump is a sign of that, and while Bernie vs. Biden is not unimportant, I think the main effort should be rethinking democracy.

    13 votes
  7. Comment on Bernie Sanders says he's staying in race, looks forward to debating Joe Biden in ~news

    arp242
    Link Parent
    Even if there's just a 5% chance that Sanders will win, then that's still a 5% chance. Unlikely things happen, and given the large investments already done and large potential gains it seems silly...

    Even if there's just a 5% chance that Sanders will win, then that's still a 5% chance. Unlikely things happen, and given the large investments already done and large potential gains it seems silly to me to call quits now so close to the end.

    6 votes
  8. Comment on All European travel to the US will be suspended for 30 days, with exemptions for the UK and Americans who undergo screening in ~health.coronavirus

    arp242
    Link Parent
    The ban applies to the Schengen area, which doesn't include the UK and Ireland (but does some non-EU countries like Norway, Switzerland, and Iceland). Note there have been cases in the UK and...

    The ban applies to the Schengen area, which doesn't include the UK and Ireland (but does some non-EU countries like Norway, Switzerland, and Iceland). Note there have been cases in the UK and Ireland, as well as some other non-EU European countries like the Balkan states such as Serbia and Croatia. Never mind non-European countries like Japan and Brazil which, as far as I can find, have no such travel restrictions.

    The most charitable interpretation I can give this is that it's a half-arsed measure; I'd really like to avoid seeking some political meaning behind this, but given what I know of Trump this is ... kinda hard.

    Trump said that "The Media should view this as a time of unity and strength", which is hard to take as anything other than "Please stop criticising me" given his history with the media ("enemy of the people").

    10 votes
  9. Comment on Police are warning parents a Bristol protest Greta Thunberg is due to join has 'grown so large' it is unlikely usual safety measures will be adequate in ~enviro

    arp242
    Link Parent
    Bristol is pretty much the left-wing capital of England, so not exactly representative for the rest of the country. I lived there for two years, and got kind of tired of it with seemingly...

    Bristol is pretty much the left-wing capital of England, so not exactly representative for the rest of the country. I lived there for two years, and got kind of tired of it with seemingly everything turning in to a rave party with loads of people on drugs 🤷‍♂️ Also, to put things in context, there were some large-ish protests after Trump was elected (seemed kinda pointless to me to do that there, but okay), and in 2011 there were riots because ... a Tesco opened.

    4 votes
  10. Comment on How to crack every nut in ~food

    arp242
    Link
    You can crack a walnut cleanly by hitting in the right spot; a Dutch TV show did an episode on it a few years ago. Relevant English parts: https://youtu.be/ZFMEl0DUvPk?t=804 and...

    You can crack a walnut cleanly by hitting in the right spot; a Dutch TV show did an episode on it a few years ago. Relevant English parts: https://youtu.be/ZFMEl0DUvPk?t=804 and https://youtu.be/ZFMEl0DUvPk?t=907 I tried a few years ago, but never quite managed to get it right 😅

    1 vote
  11. Comment on Coming soon: A new site for fully free collaboration in ~comp

    arp242
    Link Parent
    That's pretty much the FSF's motto innit? For my own product, I started out with "works without JavaScript" as well. It's a "classic" template-driven jQuery app (still works very well IMHO, but...

    If you start with such crippling dogma, it's going to be hard to get anywhere

    That's pretty much the FSF's motto innit?

    For my own product, I started out with "works without JavaScript" as well. It's a "classic" template-driven jQuery app (still works very well IMHO, but that's another discussion) so I figured it wouldn't be that hard.

    Turned out ... it was actually quite hard, and a lot of duplicate work. There are loads of little things you need to duplicate and the ROI goes down very fast very hard. I decided to just let the "works without JS"-feature go.

    2 votes
  12. Comment on 22 studies, across ideological differences, agree: Medicare for All saves money in ~news

    arp242
    Link Parent
    The biggest fallacy seems to be that "freedom" is thought of as a one-dimensional axis; something that can be either increased or decreased in various ways. But that's clearly not how it works....

    The biggest fallacy seems to be that "freedom" is thought of as a one-dimensional axis; something that can be either increased or decreased in various ways.

    But that's clearly not how it works. Your freedom to play music at 4am infringes on my freedom to have a good night's sleep. In a lot of cases, there are a lot of factors and increasing freedom in one area for some, decreases it for others.

    For health care especially it's pretty complex, because you can't really "choose" when you're having a heart attack.

    Both Republicans and Democrats want to increase personal freedom, they just disagree on how to do it (it's hilarious that "liberal" is used as "anti-freedom" by some). This makes the right's "we're the only one in favour of freedom"-line even more ridiculous.

    None of this is deep or insightful philosophical thinking ... just basic common sense really. People in Europe often look (and laugh) at the US religious dogma, but really, the biggest dogma is their "Freedom" IMHO

    5 votes
  13. Comment on 22 studies, across ideological differences, agree: Medicare for All saves money in ~news

    arp242
    Link Parent
    But as long as the government doesn't do it, it's fine because you have a choice (/s)

    But as long as the government doesn't do it, it's fine because you have a choice (/s)

    6 votes
  14. Comment on Linux is a subpar choice for professional video editing in ~comp

    arp242
    Link Parent
    For some people it's an ethical matter, rather than a pragmatical choice, which explains these kind of attitudes. It's kinda similar to "if you don't like gay sex then don't have any"; it doesn't...

    There's definitely a vocal minority of the FOSS community that would shame you for "giving up", but those are people who are completely unable to empathize that people have different needs and work in different jobs than they do.

    For some people it's an ethical matter, rather than a pragmatical choice, which explains these kind of attitudes. It's kinda similar to "if you don't like gay sex then don't have any"; it doesn't work for the anti-gay crowd because they think it's ethically wrong 🤷‍♂️

  15. Comment on Why six hours of sleep is as bad as none at all in ~health

    arp242
    Link Parent
    Additionally, I suspect few people sleep consistently 6 hours a night. I've always had problems sleeping and often don't sleep enough, but then sometimes I sleep like a rock for 12 hours and...

    Additionally, I suspect few people sleep consistently 6 hours a night. I've always had problems sleeping and often don't sleep enough, but then sometimes I sleep like a rock for 12 hours and "catch up"

    I know this isn't healthy, but I spent significant efforts to improve on it with rather limited results. Either way, this study is contrived.

    1 vote
  16. Comment on 17 Klein Bottles become 1 - ft. Cliff Stoll and the glasswork of Lucas Clarke in ~science

    arp242
    Link
    I bought a Klein Bottle from Cliff years ago. His entire website and ordering process is hilarious, and when I got the package it was covered with handwritten jokes (some in Dutch!) Also came with...

    I bought a Klein Bottle from Cliff years ago. His entire website and ordering process is hilarious, and when I got the package it was covered with handwritten jokes (some in Dutch!) Also came with a pretty funny "instruction manual".

    Unfortunately I don't have it any more as I've been travelling a lot and it's not really the kind of thing you can take with you around the world. I think my ex-girlfriend has it.

    4 votes
  17. Comment on Discord is not an acceptable choice for free software projects in ~comp

    arp242
    Link Parent
    I find the entire notion of what people "should" be doing quite objectionable to be honest. It's one thing to point out advantages, but quite another thing to say that people should be doing...

    I find the entire notion of what people "should" be doing quite objectionable to be honest. It's one thing to point out advantages, but quite another thing to say that people should be doing something.

    3 votes
  18. Comment on Self promotion vs. Original content vs. Own content vs. User created vs. ...? in ~tildes

    arp242
    Link Parent
    Posting a link to the NYT or any other newspaper will profit them. I don't see how it's really all that different from someone having some ads on their weblog or YouTube channel. In the end, I...

    A user posting their drawings purely for the purposes of sharing or getting feedback, I will likely be far more generous to and less critical of than one who is clearly trying to profit from it in some obvious/obnoxious way.

    Posting a link to the NYT or any other newspaper will profit them. I don't see how it's really all that different from someone having some ads on their weblog or YouTube channel. In the end, I think it would be best if the content is judged, regardless of who posted it.

    Like I said in my reply to your other comment, "original content" is a neutral and informative term, just like all the existing ones, whereas "self promotion" isn't. I have ads on my "self-promoted" website; I get maybe $35/month from it at the most, which is some nice pocket change I guess, but I don't post anything here to "self-promote" this. It just so happens to have ads, too.

    Besides, traffic from Tildes is so small that you're really barking up the wrong tree if you're coming here to "self promote" anything.

    A user who only ever posts imgur albums with their art is much less likely to be considered spamming than one who only ever posts items from their Etsy storefront.

    I suppose that's a very clear-cut case, but I'm not sure how often that happens? A lot of the examples mentioned I've seen mentioned before are very murky at best (like me posting a to my site).

    What about someone who links their imgur with a link to Etsy? Or with a link to their website which contains a link to their Etsy?

    3 votes
  19. Comment on Self promotion vs. Original content vs. Own content vs. User created vs. ...? in ~tildes

    arp242
    Link Parent
    I don't see why it would matter; if it's good content, then it's good content; why cares who posted it and if they have YouTube ads or not? If you think a user is spamming their own content too...

    unless the submission is a case where the user is clearly attempting to profit off the content

    I don't see why it would matter; if it's good content, then it's good content; why cares who posted it and if they have YouTube ads or not?

    If you think a user is spamming their own content too much, or keeps posting their own low-quality content then you can just leave a comment, which strikes me as vastly superior over passively aggressively slapping on a "self-promotion" tag. For starters, the OP can reply to that, either to explain or to apologize.

    1 vote
  20. Comment on Self promotion vs. Original content vs. Own content vs. User created vs. ...? in ~tildes

    arp242
    Link Parent
    Well, I've already written it. Guess I could copy/paste to Tildes, but why bother? The general way sites like Tildes work is as a link aggregator; I don't really see a reason to treat posts you've...

    Well, I've already written it. Guess I could copy/paste to Tildes, but why bother? The general way sites like Tildes work is as a link aggregator; I don't really see a reason to treat posts you've written yourself as any different?

    I like putting stuff on my website for future reference and such (I often polish articles after feedback, sometimes years after I originally wrote them). Actually, a lot of them are synthesised from comments I left on various places, or are posted in place of them. That anti-vaxx one started life as a comment on Ars Technica, but then I figured it would be a worthwhile point to make on my website instead of on the 8th page of an Ars thread, so I ended up posting it there instead.

    It gives me a nice index of "this is stuff I've written that I think is worthwhile".

    There's also a higher barrier for publishing something on my website vs. leaving a comment (or even starting a text thread) and I generally put much more effort in them. I think that's a good thing (I have well over 150 drafts in various stages of completion).

    5 votes