patience_limited's recent activity

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

    patience_limited
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    The original study reported on is from 2003. There's much better and more current research available. Honestly, I'd curate articles from business content generators like Forbes and Fast Company...

    The original study reported on is from 2003. There's much better and more current research available.

    Honestly, I'd curate articles from business content generators like Forbes and Fast Company very carefully. The reporting quality is very uneven, and it's clear the writers are being paid per article with little editing other than for obvious language errors.

    7 votes
  2. Comment on Radical hydrogen-boron reactor could leapfrog current nuclear fusion tech in ~science

    patience_limited
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    Skeptical here as well, especially since there's little viable update on the last spate of glowing press releases from 2017. Hora's lab has been chugging along generating papers for decades, but...

    Skeptical here as well, especially since there's little viable update on the last spate of glowing press releases from 2017.

    Hora's lab has been chugging along generating papers for decades, but the most recent news may have been spurred by some experimental evidence from another research team that they're actually getting significant production of alpha particles from the B11 process. Watch this space, but I'm not holding my breath for a practical process yet.

    4 votes
  3. Comment on Fitness Weekly Discussion in ~health

    patience_limited
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    I hear you about the chlorine; I was afraid of similar skin problems going back, but the YMCA pool I go to uses salt water with minimal chlorine, and that helps a lot. Regular use of non-drowsy...

    I hear you about the chlorine; I was afraid of similar skin problems going back, but the YMCA pool I go to uses salt water with minimal chlorine, and that helps a lot. Regular use of non-drowsy antihistamines helps, too.

    As to yoga, I found hot yoga, with an instructor who specialized in restorative yoga for injuries and arthritis, was of most benefit. Unfortunately, I haven't found someone similarly skilled where I am now. There's a big Ayurveda-oriented yoga school, but I was really put off by their program.

    2 votes
  4. Comment on Fitness Weekly Discussion in ~health

    patience_limited
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    I can't recommend aquatics highly enough for arthritis and back pain. The ability to do aerobic and range-of-motion exercise with your joints mostly unloaded is immensely useful. I started an...

    I can't recommend aquatics highly enough for arthritis and back pain. The ability to do aerobic and range-of-motion exercise with your joints mostly unloaded is immensely useful. I started an aquacise program with flex and aerobics classes at the local Y after the arthritis diagnosis. Damage had already been done, but it turned out to be perfect preparation for hip replacement. I'd already been doing the physical therapy as flex exercises; the doc said I was in the 95+% percentile for recovery. You just have to get comfortable with the notion that many of your classmates will be 70+ year-olds; it's not competitive at all.

    Swimming was the next step, and if you're already in good shape, that can be great for back problems as well. My mother kept up 5 km several times a week into her eighties, and maintained full mobility with even with horrible spinal arthritis.

    I wouldn't give up weight training. Keeping up muscle and tendon strength, as well as bone density, becomes more essential as you get older. Just check and be very careful about your form. The research isn't in yet on super-slow weightlifting; my experience is that it does encourage you to be very conscious of the forces on your joints and spine, and gives you time to adjust your form while you're lifting. I'm trying to lose weight, but there's no question that I'm gaining muscle mass much faster with this technique than standard weightlifting.

    I've had the experience of yoga aggravating back and joint pain. If you do undertake it, seek out instructors with some physiatry experience, not just people who are into Ayurvedic woo. However, I'm stupid and push things past pain - YMMV, listen to your body.

    2 votes
  5. Comment on Fitness Weekly Discussion in ~health

    patience_limited
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    Slack week - I got my major exercise day in, but missed more regular swimming and aerobics. Partly travel, partly just needing more recovery time from super-slow weightlifting. I've been seeing...

    Slack week - I got my major exercise day in, but missed more regular swimming and aerobics.

    Partly travel, partly just needing more recovery time from super-slow weightlifting. I've been seeing very substantial strength gains, around 5 - 10% per week, but the fatigue and DOMS were killer this week, as well as increased arthritis pain from weather changes and hours spent in the car. The weights are actually helping with range of motion loss from arthritis, and I can do most swimming strokes properly now - on balance, super-slow is great.

    2 votes
  6. Comment on This simple crib cost $28,885 to make—because it was made with zero fossil fuels in ~enviro

    patience_limited
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    Agreed - the cost is for prototyping, not just of the crib itself, but for every startup carbon-free process involved in its construction. This is not representative of its cost in industrial...

    Agreed - the cost is for prototyping, not just of the crib itself, but for every startup carbon-free process involved in its construction. This is not representative of its cost in industrial production at scale. Every other involved process, once established, can be utilized for hosts of other products. That's costing applicable to any standard process change, and not a surrogate for unique costs of carbon-free transition.

    13 votes
  7. Comment on Las Vegas Democratic Debate Discussion Thread in ~talk

    patience_limited
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    Debate transcript is here, for reference. I'll admit I read the transcript instead of watching the debate in real time; it's just too infuriating at this point. I hate the debate format and...

    Debate transcript is here, for reference. I'll admit I read the transcript instead of watching the debate in real time; it's just too infuriating at this point.

    I hate the debate format and moderation style, as I don't think it provides adequate time for sensible or informative response and rebuttal. Even with the field whittled down to six candidates, the debate seems contrived to generate sound bites.

    Worse yet, the moderators' questions seem calculated to avoid issues that the Presidential role actually has real power to address (e.g. war powers, foreign policy, trade, executive power over the administrative and military bureaucracy, courts, etc.). Much of the questioning covers Congressional responsibilities instead, which sets the electorate up for an authoritarian view of executive power. None of the questioning is directed at the President's role in acting as leader of the Democratic Party, either - a role the prior Clinton and Obama presidencies spectacularly failed at.

    While a President has the ability to advocate for Congressional action, and the bureaucratic power to ensure the laws are implemented effectively (or not), much depends on changing out Republicans in Congress as well. The impact of conservative court appointments remains to be seen, but isn't likely positive. As with the Obama administration, there's no way a President alone can achieve rapid wholesale change through Constitutional means, regardless of aspiration or popular support. Inviting the candidates' sweeping promises just lays the ground for future debate on Donald Trump's terms.

    All that being said, Bloomberg's candidacy could well be a disaster for the party. He's campaigning for billionaires' right to rule, and the secret of power maintenance for the rich is that most people aspire to become wealthy. The bits of his campaign advertising I've seen pander to bourgeois aspiration rather than justice. Trump has proven that this, with a side of dog-whistle racism, works.

    No questions were asked about how Bloomberg bought his way onstage, campaign finance reform or administrative enforcement of existing law (reform the Federal Election Commission, FFFS!). While the stop-and-frisk and harassment non-disclosure discussion was helpful in attacking Bloomberg's actions as Mayor of New York, there was no opportunity to discuss his subsequent and ongoing autocratic, paternalistic actions and media control (e.g. this), or his opportunities to entrench and broaden his family's wealth in office.

    Altogether, the debate seemed calculated to create heat rather than light, and it's too easy to get sick of the whole process.

    Edit: apostrophes!

    10 votes
  8. Comment on How an AT&T Lawyer Helped Monopolize Cheerleading and Induce Drug Shortages in ~finance

    patience_limited
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    It's hard to understate the importance of policy staff in ensuring government works, or doesn't. This nifty story from Matt Stoller's BIG newsletter is helpful in understanding what happened to...

    It's hard to understate the importance of policy staff in ensuring government works, or doesn't. This nifty story from Matt Stoller's BIG newsletter is helpful in understanding what happened to anti-monopoly enforcement in the U.S. over the last two decades, and why progressive action is so essential.

    Also, read on through the story to the post-script about global supply chain chokepoints revealed through China's quarantines.

    The key for today’s merger analysis is consumer price, so the crux of the complaint were these sentences: “Cheerleading uniform prices have gone through the roof due to Varsity forcing their company on to unsuspecting gym owners…. Competition costs are so high that many athletes have to quit the sport due to the cost. (Competitions and Uniforms are the largest fees any athlete pays in respect to being on a team.)” Enforcers should have recognized that higher consumer prices was a signal of market power, and so this merger was worth blocking. But they did not. Why? Who received the complaint, and who was in charge of the bureau of enforcement when Varsity formed its monopoly?

    The answer, as far as I can tell, is a lawyer named Debbie Feinstein, who DOJ Antitrust was telling complainants to contact about the case. At the time of the merger, Feinstein was the head of enforcement for the FTC, and she has exactly the personality of the kind of person you want as an enforcer. She’s a very hands-on manager, with a forceful personality, deep knowledge of the law, and an aggressive advocate for her clients. She is a respected in the community; trade publication Global Competition Review called her “lawyer of the year,” and Obama DOJ Antitrust chief Bill Bauer said she is “one of the leading antitrust lawyers in the country.”

    And yet, despite her eminent qualifications and personal grit, Feinstein comes from a world where enforcing the antitrust laws doesn’t mean protecting competition in markets. For her, it means protecting a specific pro-monopoly vision of the law.

    3 votes
  9. Comment on What did you do this weekend? in ~talk

    patience_limited
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    Boof (in my day, it was different slang) and 2c-b. Nice to see that PIHKAL remains a viable source of new and exciting ways to achieve liftoff.

    Boof (in my day, it was different slang) and 2c-b. Nice to see that PIHKAL remains a viable source of new and exciting ways to achieve liftoff.

    4 votes
  10. Comment on What did you do this weekend? in ~talk

    patience_limited
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    That's nostalgic for me, but now I know I'm too old because I had to look up both a word and a drug nickname.

    That's nostalgic for me, but now I know I'm too old because I had to look up both a word and a drug nickname.

    4 votes
  11. Comment on What did you do this weekend? in ~talk

    patience_limited
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    I've found umami boosters like dried porcini and smoked paprika improve the flavor of vegan meat substitutes - there's a place for these in chili. Another thing - if you're serious about chili...

    I've found umami boosters like dried porcini and smoked paprika improve the flavor of vegan meat substitutes - there's a place for these in chili. Another thing - if you're serious about chili competition, use fresh spices as whole as possible, then pan-roast just until aromatic, and grind them together. Add your chili spice in three tranches - the first while sauteing ingredients, the second when everything goes into the pot to simmer, then the last just after removing the pot from the heat. Adjust salt and pepper heat to taste when it's at serving temperature.

    3 votes
  12. Comment on Jeff Bezos commits $10 billion to address climate change in ~enviro

    patience_limited
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    I'd be inclined to agree with you and /u/edel, but note that the article mentions Bezos has also ordered 100,000 electric trucks for Amazon's fleet. It's certainly true that Jeff Bezos and other...

    I'd be inclined to agree with you and /u/edel, but note that the article mentions Bezos has also ordered 100,000 electric trucks for Amazon's fleet.

    It's certainly true that Jeff Bezos and other multi-billionaires have accumulated wealth to an extreme that just, equitable taxation and regulation would have prevented. It's also true that they're gaming the political system and public opinion to ensure they can hold onto their wealth indefinitely.

    But that doesn't mean Bezos' climate fund initiative is entirely based on bad faith. It seems he believes it's a personal threat, and is at least willing to invest in Plan B (stopping/reversing climate change) in the event that he doesn't get to decamp for space when things go pear-shaped on Earth. I suppose it's trusting too much, but he's at least willing to concede that a threat to human life probably includes him; I'm fine with Bezos investing in the basic research as long as he doesn't manage to twist the outcome to his exclusive personal benefit.

    5 votes
  13. Comment on What did you do this weekend? in ~talk

    patience_limited
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    Be careful - loving tangible results from your hobby may mean you wind up with one or more craft side gigs. When you're tired of the cognitive overwork, it's so healing to produce objects that...

    Be careful - loving tangible results from your hobby may mean you wind up with one or more craft side gigs. When you're tired of the cognitive overwork, it's so healing to produce objects that your craft will improve rapidly. The next thing you know, people will start asking to buy it. It's probably not going to remunerate you quite well enough to quit an IT day job, but creating does save some therapy costs.

    4 votes
  14. Comment on What did you do this weekend? in ~talk

    patience_limited
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    Spouse and I drove out to the nearest big city for a couple of days of house components shopping. We got tired of browsing for furniture without being able to sit in anything, and tile colors just...

    Spouse and I drove out to the nearest big city for a couple of days of house components shopping. We got tired of browsing for furniture without being able to sit in anything, and tile colors just don't show well on a screen.

    In case you weren't aware, it's possible to burn out neurons with cognitive overload from trying to choose backsplash tile. It's both a symptom of end-stage capitalism and excessive bourgeois taste that we must have looked at 1,000+ varieties of ceramic, porcelain, stone, metal, and glass tile in the space of 4 hours and three stops... I think my eyes came close to literally glazing over.

    The only sovereign remedy for this is beer, and we were fortunate to find the most amazing place in a city well-known for the quality of its products. The food was terrific (real poutine!). Every beer among two sets of four-beer tasting samples was something which we both would happily drink again. That's never yet happened elsewhere.

    So, sadder but wiser, and with two ergonomic chairs for our efforts, we're back home again.

    4 votes
  15. Comment on What did you do this weekend? in ~talk

  16. Comment on What's something you have always wanted to know about being LGBT (but were maybe afraid to ask)? in ~talk

    patience_limited
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    I've been hesitant to respond to this one, since it's another potential identity breadcrumb. But it's relevant to the conversation in that I did grow up with a "church" that was openly accepting...

    I've been hesitant to respond to this one, since it's another potential identity breadcrumb. But it's relevant to the conversation in that I did grow up with a "church" that was openly accepting of LGBT+ people, at a time when that was nearly unheard of.

    Rabbi Sherwin Wine's Humanist Judaism congregation wound up being the refuge for LGBT+ people who had been driven out of other congregations and/or their families. [Rabbi Wine himself came out immediately after his mother passed away.]

    My parents stopped going by the time I was a young teen, and my suspicion is that the congregation was both a little too bourgeois affluent and a little too sexually liberal for their tastes. I recall some whispering about a transwoman who'd joined, when that was still a rarity. My mother was also quite conscious that the Humanists had become scandalous among her Conservative and Orthodox relations. But I think I might have had an easier, less isolated and confusing period of self-discovery if I'd come of age in that community.

    As an adult non-binary atheist, I don't have much use for an explicitly patriarchy-centered celebration of faith history and culture. However, as /u/kfwyre mentioned, I really miss the beauty and community in ritual and song. I've been considering joining up with the local Unitarians, who have a significant Humanist faction, just for the opportunity to share celebrations and charitable activity motivated by a sense of common humanity.

    6 votes
  17. Comment on How to optimise your headspace on a mission to Mars in ~space

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    Why is it that the writers of these articles don't mention research on submarine crews? It's not like it's hard to find.

    Why is it that the writers of these articles don't mention research on submarine crews? It's not like it's hard to find.

    4 votes
  18. Comment on What's something you have always wanted to know about being LGBT (but were maybe afraid to ask)? in ~talk

    patience_limited
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    Warning: wild theorizing ahead I proposed a multi-axial model of gender here, and I think it might help clarify how you can understand this. Part of the problem in applying language to gender is...

    Warning: wild theorizing ahead

    I proposed a multi-axial model of gender here, and I think it might help clarify how you can understand this.

    Part of the problem in applying language to gender is that we're trying to describe a multi-dimensional phenomenon using a two-dimensional model - gender as a point on a line that only extends from stereotypical male to female extremes. That makes it hard to conceptualize intermediate gender states accurately, especially when they might be variable over time.

    There's a mathematical tool called an elastic map, which lets you graphically represent how results dependent on multi-dimensional variables locate as nodes on a non-linear manifold.

    So if you visualize gender as that bulgy manifold, you can observe and characterize people's experience in terms of a surface with continuous areas and magnitudes of "male", "female", "non-gendered", "transgender", and "polygendered or non-binary", depending on clusters of underlying traits.

    So, if I describe myself as "non-binary", I'm speaking of the experience of variances from "female" in biochemistry, neurodevelopmental traits, and social role, which don't place me fully in the "male" territory, but aren't "non-gendered" or "transgendered", either.

    7 votes
  19. Comment on What's something you have always wanted to know about being LGBT (but were maybe afraid to ask)? in ~talk

    patience_limited
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    There are commonalities among all outsider communities. We band together for support among those with similar experiences of traumatic exclusion, to commune with others like us, to advocate for...

    There are commonalities among all outsider communities. We band together for support among those with similar experiences of traumatic exclusion, to commune with others like us, to advocate for rights, and to collectively share tools and knowledge for growth, healing, and empowerment.

    From my own experience, I can confirm that it's possible to experience gender dysphoria without being trans.

    Gender is complicated in ways broader, I think, than neurodevelopmental divergence. I can think of at least five axes for characterizing it, that the medical and psychological professions usually sum up as "bio-psychosocial":

    1. Genotypic - sex-determining chromosomes and genes;

    2. Biochemical/phenotypic - what levels of sex hormones you naturally express, environmental hormone exposures, how you metabolize sex hormones, and how sensitive various chemical receptors in muscle, bone, endocrine tissues, etc. are to hormone activity, which all influence how your gender looks and functions;

    3. Neurodevelopmental - the degree to which your brain is specialized for sex-specific responses and behaviors (as you mention, there may be some influence on ASD here, but this can also influence gender identity and sexual orientation);

    4. Intrafamilial - early gendered behavior learning as modeled by parents, siblings, and extended family;

    5. Social role - the permitted and mandated gender expressions prescribed by broader units of society.

    Gender dysphoria can arise in the presence of excursions from the norm on any of these axes. Transexuality (at least as it's being researched) is assumed to operate at the neurodevelopmental level, possibly with some genetic or environmental hormone influences. Your analogy with ASD isn't totally off-base, but with regard to gender dysphoria, incomplete.

    I can say, after a great deal of inquiry, reflection, and medical consultation, that I'm not trans, despite having gender dysphoria. The formulation, with reference to the model I proposed above is, "I don't feel like I'm biochemically, neurologically, or socially a normal woman, but being a man in most or all five dimensions definitely wouldn't feel right, either."

    6 votes