papasquat's recent activity

  1. Comment on Should the Steam Deck just be a gaming tablet? in ~tech

    papasquat
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    Yes, but not based on android. One of the most outstanding things about the deck is how open and permissive it is. You automatically have root out of the box, aside from steam, it runs completely...

    Yes, but not based on android. One of the most outstanding things about the deck is how open and permissive it is. You automatically have root out of the box, aside from steam, it runs completely open source software, you have access to a complete and well polished linux desktop environment out of the box. I would far prefer Valve to continue iterating on the deck UI such that they can either seamlessly run android apps, or further flesh out the integration withe the deck's UI and the rest of the OS so that QT apps, Webapps, and Electron apps can be more seamlessly integrated, further reducing the need to go into desktop mode at all for day to day use than for them to invite google and all the nonsense that comes with that onto the platform.

    9 votes
  2. Comment on Let's terraform West Texas in ~enviro

    papasquat
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    Yeah, the author is posing this solution as if living in the desert was somehow an unsolvable technical problem. It isn't. There are plenty of communities that exist in the desert and do just...

    Yeah, the author is posing this solution as if living in the desert was somehow an unsolvable technical problem. It isn't. There are plenty of communities that exist in the desert and do just fine. The difference between what he's proposing, and those communities is that there's an economic incentive that those communities have to exist. Vegas was in the middle of nowhere because it was away from the thumb of authorities so grey market gambling rackets could take place. Phoenix was a large farming community because of favorable river deltas.

    What he's talking about is just colonizing a barren wasteland that has no economic means of supporting itself. It's incredibly expensive to do, and without something to pay for all of that economic development, it makes absolutely no sense.

    The problem with living in the middle of nowhere was never a technical one, it was always an economic one.

    2 votes
  3. Comment on An AI-generated artwork won first place at a state fair fine arts competition, and artists are pissed in ~arts

    papasquat
    Link Parent
    That's the thing though, AI isn't currently capable of making refutations of art that came before it. Its only capable of imitating it.

    Some art is a refinement of what came before, some is a refutation.

    That's the thing though, AI isn't currently capable of making refutations of art that came before it. Its only capable of imitating it.

  4. Comment on An AI-generated artwork won first place at a state fair fine arts competition, and artists are pissed in ~arts

    papasquat
    Link Parent
    Art's not fair in the same way that track and field aren't fair. Genetically, some people are taller than others, some have higher lung capacity, some have better muscle development, some have a...

    I don’t really expect art to be fair in the sense that some people are more talented than others and can get better results much more quickly and with less practice.

    Art's not fair in the same way that track and field aren't fair. Genetically, some people are taller than others, some have higher lung capacity, some have better muscle development, some have a more favorable center of gravity. Socially, some people grew up in a household that emphasized and supported athletic achievement, some people went to schools with good coaches, some people had access to better nutrition. People can't control these things, they just make do with the hands they are dealt, and even though they're not really fair technically, we've accepted that there are very few things we can actually control for to make a level playing field (age, sex, and disabilities being the only three I can really think of). As a society, we've accepted that this is fair enough, and the same goes for the art world.

    What this guy did would be akin to showing up with a Lamborghini on the starting line, and then when he absolutely smokes the competition, people come to his defense saying "Well, he had to spend the money to rent that Lamborghini, and he had to learn how to drive it! Plus, technological progress is inevitable!"

    There are absolutely degrees of fairness, and this is just so wildly outside that, not to mention the fact that he wasn't entirely transparent with the judges on how this piece was generated before he won.

    1 vote
  5. Comment on An AI-generated artwork won first place at a state fair fine arts competition, and artists are pissed in ~arts

    papasquat
    Link Parent
    It's pretty sad. AI Automation has kicked off a desperate race to the bottom, just as automation has in most other industries. Master furniture makers are few and far between, because paying a 50x...

    It's pretty sad. AI Automation has kicked off a desperate race to the bottom, just as automation has in most other industries.
    Master furniture makers are few and far between, because paying a 50x markup on furniture doesn't make sense when you can go to Ikea and get CNC mass produced cardboard crap that looks passably decent enough. Local farmers don't make sense when you can get a slightly less fresh factory farmed chicken for half the price. It doesn't make sense to pay a copywriter to write decent copy for your product or article when you can get an algorithm that gets 95% of the way there but has strange quirks and the writing feels hollow and bland.
    I see art going the same way, where paying a graphic designer to make a logo for you or paying illustrators to create art for your story or product
    I get the market forces at play here, people want more stuff, and they want to pay less for it, and the loss in quality is negligible. It still makes me extremely sad though. It's just one more area where our lives are dominated by mass produced, automated, cheap crap.

    6 votes
  6. Comment on An AI-generated artwork won first place at a state fair fine arts competition, and artists are pissed in ~arts

    papasquat
    Link Parent
    There's one major limitation of AI art though. Its inherently derivative. Every piece of decent AI generated art looks like something some human did before, because that's what they're trained on....

    if you told me it was hand-painted over the course of years by a brilliant artist I wouldn't blink twice. It looks (to me, at least) really good and at-a-glance indistinguishable from something a human might have painted.

    There's one major limitation of AI art though. Its inherently derivative. Every piece of decent AI generated art looks like something some human did before, because that's what they're trained on. They'll never create anything truly original, at least not with the technology we're currently using. If "AI Art" gets lumped into the same category as human made art, the art world would very quickly coalesce on the new lowest common denominator, because why put forth hundreds of hours of effort to create something truly original if you could click a button and have a computer do it in thirty seconds?

    The thing that would be lost though, is true human creativity. If Picasso used AI, cubism wouldn't have happened. If Matisse used it, Fauvism wouldn't have existed. Computers are, and always have been extremely good at following instructions. They're recently gotten better at following very advanced instructions, resulting in the ability to ask a computer to draw a painting that looks like a specific artist and getting a passable result. They're still just following instructions though. The instructions now just happen to be a combination of their prompts, and their training material. There's zero actual creativity going on though. A computer will never have a beautiful thought and be inspired to paint the way it made him feel, they'll never suffer the depths of depression and express that on a canvas. They'll never even see a mountain stream that seems particularly beautiful to them and then try to capture it. They just do what they're told to do. A human being prompting a computer to do these things may have some sort of artistic value, but it's not at all the same thing as an artist creating from scratch a piece of art.

    AI Generated art taking off as a replacement for actual fine artists would just result in the at large art world become stuck in an eternal stasis with nothing really new ever being invented, which is pretty sad.

    3 votes
  7. Comment on The Biden-Harris administration's student debt relief plan in ~finance

    papasquat
    Link Parent
    Because we live in an imperfect world where the optimal thing is very rarely the thing that's done. Resumes are just an arbitrary filter to cull down the amount of people you have to interview....

    I mean, if the hurdle to getting an interview is a shitty filter, why not drop the pretenses and randomize which applicants to advance?

    Because we live in an imperfect world where the optimal thing is very rarely the thing that's done. Resumes are just an arbitrary filter to cull down the amount of people you have to interview. Outside of extreme example, anyone that's ever done hiring will tell you they very rarely correlate with the quality of the candidate. There's no such thing as morality when it comes to these transactions and pretending that it does just puts you behind. If you find a job offer that looks appealing to you, and you think it's something you're capable of, you should absolutely tailor the resume you send out to make it look like you're a perfect candidate for that role and you shouldn't at all feel bad about it. If you don't think that virtually every company that posts job ads is doing the same thing on their end to make their positions seem as appealing as possible, you're kidding yourself. You should take the supposed values and perks of the job in the ad with a grain of salt, just like hiring managers are taking your resume with a grain of salt. The interview is where both sides go to get a better picture of the truth.

    Both the resume and the job ad are there to get feet in the door.

    4 votes
  8. Comment on The Biden-Harris administration's student debt relief plan in ~finance

    papasquat
    Link Parent
    You're viewing a resume as some sort of objective document that perfectly describes your experience level and your aptitude, when it's not that. It's a tool to get you an interview, nothing more,...

    In my mind, the contents of my resume are objective facts that don't change depending on the role I apply to?

    You're viewing a resume as some sort of objective document that perfectly describes your experience level and your aptitude, when it's not that. It's a tool to get you an interview, nothing more, and nothing less.
    The interview is where your prospective employer tries to suss out your actual experience level and skillset..

    5 votes
  9. Comment on The SLS rocket is the worst thing to happen to NASA—but maybe also the best? in ~space

    papasquat
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    They didn't go from literal zero. They absorbed a ton of personnel and facilities from NACA, all of Weherner Von Braun's Nazi funded research from ABMA and Von Braun himself, a ton of ARPA...

    They didn't go from literal zero. They absorbed a ton of personnel and facilities from NACA, all of Weherner Von Braun's Nazi funded research from ABMA and Von Braun himself, a ton of ARPA resources, and nationalized JPL from caltech. As previously mentioned, they were also basically given a blank check and the entire country's almost singular focus.

    The space race wasn't a scientific curiosity like going back to the moon is now, it was a grave matter of national security. The government wasn't willing to let anything, not financials, safety, public opinion, personnel shortages, or political concerns get in the way of winning. Going back to the moon just isn't nearly as important to us as it was in the 60s. If there were some grave, present existential threat that required us to go to the moon as quickly as possible, it would have taken us a fraction of the time as apollo did to do it. We're not in that situation at all anymore though.

    12 votes
  10. Comment on HBO Max to remove thirty-six titles, including twenty originals, from streaming in ~tv

    papasquat
    Link Parent
    When streaming services went legit with Netflix, I relinquished my swashbuckling ways and went legit for a while, but after the market matured, it exposed yet another flaw with unfettered free...

    When streaming services went legit with Netflix, I relinquished my swashbuckling ways and went legit for a while, but after the market matured, it exposed yet another flaw with unfettered free markets. Every content creator doesn't like having to share the pie with a tech company to serve their content, so decided to make their own service with their own subscription, and content started disappearing from Netflix. Now there's this weird prisoners dilemma going on, where the industry as a whole could make a ton more money if they just collaborated on a single, good streaming service and put all their content on it for a middle of the road monthly charge (maybe 30 or 40 bucks a month), but instead have decided to balkanize the whole thing and charge more for their content than they'd even get on the legacy model, such that if a person wants to watch all the big content providers shows, they're paying upwards of $150 a month.

    I've been happily pirating all of my content for the past two years ago and feel not even an ounce of guilt for it. If these companies are tired of dealing with lost subscriptions to piracy, they'll need to work together to collaborate on something to keep costs down, or maybe stop sinking literal hundreds of millions of dollars on production costs for single seasons of TV shows. Every mainstream TV drama now has millions of dollars of CGI, set dressing, and massively overpaid actors, and a lot of it still manages to be trash. Something needs to give here or the industry is in for a big reckoning within the next few years.

    8 votes
  11. Comment on The more gender equality, the fewer women in STEM in ~life

    papasquat
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    I think this conversation gets into an extremely broad one about gender roles, sexual dimorphism, and the degree that cultural expectations shape those things. Ultimately, I don't think we'll ever...

    I think this conversation gets into an extremely broad one about gender roles, sexual dimorphism, and the degree that cultural expectations shape those things.

    Ultimately, I don't think we'll ever get to a place where men and women are the same, want the same things, or have the same interests and goals in general. I also don't think that's necessarily a bad thing. For instance, a lot of women's (in general, not always) arithmetic when choosing a career is how that career interacts with having a family early on, because women have a biological constraint that requires if they want to have biological children, the best time to do it is in the first 1/3rd of their lives. That's a consideration men may have too, but it's not as front and center, and it's not nearly as hard set by biological realities. That factor alone has hugely impactful follow-on effects with regards to people making decisions about their career choice or their priorities, and pretending that they don't, or somehow shouldn't, is at best naive, and materially destructive to people's happiness.
    There are hundreds of little differences between men and women like that. Some are biological, some are societal. Some are unfair, some are just merely different, and some are hard facts that set by biology which can't be changed.

    I think the best outcome we can do is to constantly examine bias, and fix instances where certain areas are hostile to a certain gender identity and work to fix that to try to make all of society as fair as it can possibly be. At that point, you need to kind of just let the chips fall where they may. Aiming with an exactly 50/50 distribution of gender in every industry is just going to cause a ton more harm to people for no real reason. It's a completely arbitrary goal.

    5 votes
  12. Comment on What's something that's changed for you as you've gotten older? in ~talk

    papasquat
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    I turn 36 this year... Damn, never thought about it that way.

    I turn 36 this year...
    Damn, never thought about it that way.

    2 votes
  13. Comment on What are you battling with right now? in ~talk

    papasquat
    Link Parent
    I have actually, a couple of weeks ago. I used to have effects similar to what you're talking to when I was younger, but sadly nothing lasting from this last time. Just feeling weird and slightly...

    I have actually, a couple of weeks ago. I used to have effects similar to what you're talking to when I was younger, but sadly nothing lasting from this last time. Just feeling weird and slightly uncomfortable. It wasn't a bad trip per se, but also not a good one. I didn't get the inspirational feeling and new perspective on things that I once did from using them. It may have been the group of people I have with, friends I've known for a really long time and who lately have turned very cynical and negative lately. Might be worth trying again alone some time.

    2 votes
  14. Comment on What are you battling with right now? in ~talk

    papasquat
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    Insecurity, and fear about my (personal, mostly romantic) future, mostly. I have a good job, lots of friends (some of them better than others), a family that loves me. All my life, my life has...

    Insecurity, and fear about my (personal, mostly romantic) future, mostly. I have a good job, lots of friends (some of them better than others), a family that loves me.

    All my life, my life has been sorta "meh" though. I had this nagging feeling of being just... unsatisfied. Not depressed or even sad really, just... not generally content. I'd be lonely most nights, longing for SOMETHING. I dated a bit in my early 20s, but they were weird, short-term flings, or very brief relationships that were riddled with anxiety. I was, and still am, exceedingly bad at going out and attracting women that I'm interested in dating. Sometimes a girl would just randomly take interest in me, make a move, and I'd go for it. We'd sleep together for a few weeks then she'd get bored and move on mostly, or more rarely, I found that I really didn't even like her that much. I was just lonely and wanted to fill this void. That happened about... 6 or so times until my mid 20s, when I met the woman who would become my wife. It started much the same, we reconnected after going to high school together, she started perusing me, things went well, and she actually stuck around. She seemed to be interested and attracted in all the parts of me that I assumed were unattractive to people: My tendency to go down rabbit holes of weird esoteric interests. My geeky love of technology and all kinds of games. My love of a good, friendly argument. My tendency towards silliness and immaturity for comedy's sake.

    I'd had women tell me they loved me before, but I didn't feel it like anyone truly meant it until she said it. We quickly became each other's best friends, and that void was filled, much to my absolute shock. A common piece of trite common knowledge is that "relationships can't make you happy" or "you can't love until you love yourself" or dozens of other variations of something similar; basically, you need to be a complete, whole, fulfilled person before you get into a relationship, otherwise that relationship will just make you more unhappy. That was so absolutely far from the truth for me. Being in a stable relationship with a woman who loved me, and who I loved, and not only that, I actually liked as a person, and respected absolutely completed me. I became a better person for her. I stepped up my career, I got in great shape, I did things that I'd never dreamed of doing for her because I wanted to, not because I expected something in return. I bought flowers for her a few times a month. I took her on trips, I cooked for her, and I loved doing this stuff, it made me even happier.

    We were together for 8 years total, and most of those 8 years were the happiest years of my life. I remember thinking "If nothing ever changed, and my life was just the way it is for the next 50 years, I would die so happy and content". Obviously, that didn't happen. I found out my wife was having an affair while I was out of the country on military duty, and I found out about it by her telling me she wanted a divorce.
    She told me that she hadn't been happy for the past three years, although she had never given any indication for it. I still don't know if there was a crumb of truth there, or if it was just a rationalization to feel better about cheating on me, but at this point it doesn't really make much of a difference.

    I've been single for almost a year and a half at this point, and unfortunately, the feelings that I have now are very familiar to me at this point. The blinding anger, hurt, depression, and fear are mostly, but not all gone. What remains, however, is even more worrisome. I knew those intense feelings had an expiration date. Lots of people get divorced, and they almost all get over it, whether its in six months, a year, five years. Logically I knew that, and even though I felt like crap a lot, I could tell myself that I'm not going to feel this way forever. What I'm feeling now though, that familiar emptiness; the hole in my life, the feeling that something isn't quite right, that I'm missing something, those feelings don't have an expiration date. I know that, because I had them for a good fifteen years of my life before I met my ex wife.

    As far as I can tell, there are two main ways out of this. I can meet someone who I fall deeply in love with, and they fall deeply in love with me, or I can somehow change my mode of thinking to no longer require a partner to feel whole and content.
    The first one, in theory, is fairly straightforward. In practice, its anything but. I was on dating apps a couple months after my separation and was on them for about 4 months. I'm not a bad looking guy, although I'm certainly no supermodel, but I did go on quite a few dates during that time. Probably about 10 or so first dates. I met a few pretty nice women; I was dating one for about a month and a half, but one too many incompatibilities and red flags caused me to cut it off. I met another one that I was absolutely crazy about after the first date and who seemed to like me, but timing with work travel caused it to fizzle out unfortunately. The entire experience was very emotionally draining, and I made the decision to take a break from them about a year ago; I haven't been on since. I met another girl through team sports and we're currently in a fling which I think is ending shortly because of a lack of enthusiasm and emotional openness on her end. Overall, the whole experience has been very disheartening. I'm starting to question for the first time whether I'll ever have another fulfilling romantic relationship again.
    That leaves the second option; but I have absolutely no clue where to even start on basically self-actualizing myself without a partner. I try to stay social, try new activities, meet new people, go to new places, but much of it feels very hollow and performative without someone else to share it with by my side.

    I don't think I'm unique in any of this, by the way. I think a lot of people feel this way, although I'm basing that on literally nothing but my own intuition. A lot of this would just come off as whining if I shared it with my friends or family, and I've talked to my therapist about it, but I don't know, it's just a very hard and ill-defined problem to tackle. I'm basically asking, "how do I be happy?" And I think if anyone truly knew the definite answer to that, human society would be obsolete. Anyway, yeah, that's what I've been dealing with lately. Hopefully things get better.

    14 votes
  15. Comment on BMW makes heated seats a monthly subscription in ~tech

    papasquat
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    Rent seeking is kind of a poorly understood concept just because of its unfortunate name. Creating a subscription service isn't rent seeking, nor is actually literally seeking rent, ie; charging...

    Rent seeking is kind of a poorly understood concept just because of its unfortunate name. Creating a subscription service isn't rent seeking, nor is actually literally seeking rent, ie; charging tenants to live in a property you own.

    It refers to a situation where a company or person gets rewarded for changing the rules of the game in their favor. If a corporation pays a powerful lobbyist 500k a year who manages to convince a politician to ease regulations that save the company $10 billion a year, that's classic rent seeking. If a company donates a few thousand to a PAC which convinces people to vote for subsidies that net them billions, that's rent seeking.

    It's basically hijacking a system that's supposed to be there for the greater good for personal gain. In this case, BMW isn't doing that. They're just being assholes.

    1 vote
  16. Comment on Meta Quest headsets will finally stop requiring a Facebook account in ~games

    papasquat
    Link Parent
    If this metaverse thing plays out the way facebook wants it to, the world will be so, so much worse off. It's like the people running the most powerful tech firms in the company somehow view the...

    If this metaverse thing plays out the way facebook wants it to, the world will be so, so much worse off. It's like the people running the most powerful tech firms in the company somehow view the entire cyberpunk genre as somehow aspirational.

    7 votes
  17. Comment on Single-use plastic waste is getting phased out in California under a sweeping new law in ~enviro

    papasquat
    Link Parent
    Plastic is a really wonderful material in reality. Its easily moldable, it can be easily sterilized, its light weight, it can be incredibly strong, it can be as ductile or brittle as you need it...

    Plastic is a really wonderful material in reality. Its easily moldable, it can be easily sterilized, its light weight, it can be incredibly strong, it can be as ductile or brittle as you need it to be, it can take on any color you want, including none (transparent), it can be spun into fiber, or expanded into a fantastic insulator, it can be made water, air, dust, and bulletproof.
    The problem is that because it's so cheap, its used for everything. I don't think a blanket ban makes sense, because there are things plastics can do which literally no other material can. Its saved lives by being made into amazing medical and safety devices. The places where it should be banned are the places where less environmentally harmful but equally adequate solutions exist. Single use packaging and consumer goods are some of the biggest offenders there. There's no great reason why chairs need to be made out of plastic, besides cost.

    7 votes
  18. Comment on Single-use plastic waste is getting phased out in California under a sweeping new law in ~enviro

    papasquat
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    Recycling isn't that great of a solution for plastics honestly. Plastic took off in the first place in part because it's so cheap to manufacture. That means that it rarely makes sense to do...

    Recycling isn't that great of a solution for plastics honestly. Plastic took off in the first place in part because it's so cheap to manufacture. That means that it rarely makes sense to do financially without massive subsidies. It also slowly breaks down, leeching chemicals into its environment for years versus something like metal or glass or paper, which will just either oxidize into naturally occurring substances, erode away into naturally occurring substances, or be broken down by microbes into naturally occurring substances. We're way better off just eliminating plastic everywhere where another material would be completely impractical.

    4 votes
  19. Comment on Single-use plastic waste is getting phased out in California under a sweeping new law in ~enviro

    papasquat
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    Plastic doesn't actually seem that chemically inert. I feel like glass is much better for that use case, also way better for the environment. There is a safety/cost consideration though.

    Plastic doesn't actually seem that chemically inert. I feel like glass is much better for that use case, also way better for the environment. There is a safety/cost consideration though.

    3 votes
  20. Comment on What games have you been playing, and what's your opinion on them? in ~games

    papasquat
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    I tried playing borderlands 3, because BL1 and to a lesser extent 2 were some of my favorite coop games of all time. The problem isn't even just that the writing is terrible, and the really,...

    I tried playing borderlands 3, because BL1 and to a lesser extent 2 were some of my favorite coop games of all time.
    The problem isn't even just that the writing is terrible, and the really, really tryhardy "omg so randum" comedy. It's that it's shoved down your throat constantly. I was having fun shooting stuff and finding loot, but there's nearly always some zany NPC screaming in my ear the entire time. The jokes aren't good, the characters aren't interesting, and the whole thing is just so painful that I had to quit a couple hours in. I doubt I'll go back.

    1 vote