streblo's recent activity

  1. Comment on Spotify Wrapped 2021 in ~music

    streblo
    Link
    My top song for the year was Dirty Heads - Lift Me Up which doesn't surprise me, I like to listen to a lot of beach/stoner rock in the summer.

    My top song for the year was Dirty Heads - Lift Me Up which doesn't surprise me, I like to listen to a lot of beach/stoner rock in the summer.

    6 votes
  2. Comment on Optimizing for test scores in ~life

    streblo
    Link
    Self-driven learning is always an option. There’s no requirement beyond availability for going to a library or sitting down at a computer and structuring your own learning. We might think that's...

    Why? Why do we insist on testing students, on passing or failing them, on determining their future and institutional worth, on their ability to memorize information? Why do we give them these stressful impending tests with stressful impending due dates that cover a stressful, bloated number of topics? This is not learning. This is not education. This is gamified class-passing. Why do we structure things this way?

    Self-driven learning is always an option. There’s no requirement beyond availability for going to a library or sitting down at a computer and structuring your own learning. We might think that's what a university ought to be equivalent too – but that's not what university’s are anymore. They’re selling a credential. The usefulness of such a credential may be debatable, but again, see option one. Option two is to recognize that the hoops are there to (try to?) make the credential worthwhile, and to jump through them as required if you want the credential.

    In my experience, I had similar frustrations while in university – taking a full engineering course load was often a hellish grind and an engineering degree is so broad because they have to teach so many aspects of it – each of which is useless to somebody not interested in that portion of the field. But I guess I was lucky enough to have had professors who graded pretty fairly – classes that made sense as project-based were project-based rather than test based for example.

    And I don’t think tests are inherently useless, although they certainly can be. Many problem based tests (e.g. math/physics/engineering) boil down to:

    • here is a problem
    • given the information, identify correctly which of ~10 types of problem this is
    • given the information, identify correctly which of ~3 variations of problem this is and which type of algorithm must be used to solve it
    • use the algorithm to solve the problem
    • be familiar enough with doing these problems as to complete them in the given time

    In my opinion, this is a decently fair way to demonstrate your understanding of topics like this. The repeated practice also helps you actually retain some of it. But many topics don’t really fit this formula, and professors can still try to shoehorn in tests which end up being rote memorization or similar.

    I strongly preferred these types of classes to the humanities classes I took in which most of your grade came from an end-of-term essay and perhaps an additional exam in which longform answers were required on some subset of topics from a given list. Having most of your grade come from a single essay, often churned out in a caffeine-driven marathon session alongside several other essays was more hellish than studying for finals, even if it was a more 'fair' assessment of your knowledge. At least studying for finals is something that can easily be done in a group, which certainly helps with the suffering.

    4 votes
  3. Comment on What board games have you played recently? in ~games.tabletop

    streblo
    (edited )
    Link
    Does Magic count? I’ve been getting back into paper magic, playing EDH a bit with just my wife, via webcam, and might try some in-person at my LGS depending on what the scene is there re:...

    Does Magic count? I’ve been getting back into paper magic, playing EDH a bit with just my wife, via webcam, and might try some in-person at my LGS depending on what the scene is there re: vaccinations and masks.

    I’ll have a look at Lanterns, we’re always looking for fun two player games.

    4 votes
  4. Comment on Chad Read’s widow releases video of deadly shooting; Carruth attorney makes case for self-defense in ~news

    streblo
    Link Parent
    I think you'll be proven right, but isn't that fucked up? From what I can understand, the guy was there to collect his kid who he had custody of at that time. Other parent doesn't hand the child...

    I think you'll be proven right, but isn't that fucked up?

    From what I can understand, the guy was there to collect his kid who he had custody of at that time. Other parent doesn't hand the child over right away and he gets heated. I understand the correct decision is unequivocally to walk away and let the authorities handle it but as a parent someone not letting you pick up your kid as you're legally entitled to and then asking you to leave at gunpoint feels an awful lot like goading to me.

    7 votes
  5. Comment on The melancholy decline of the semicolon in ~humanities

    streblo
    Link Parent
    And here I was thinking there was some esoteric grammar rule I've never heard of and a professor was shredding people for not knowing it. :P

    And here I was thinking there was some esoteric grammar rule I've never heard of and a professor was shredding people for not knowing it. :P

    4 votes
  6. Comment on The melancholy decline of the semicolon in ~humanities

    streblo
    Link Parent
    Forgive my ignorance, but how is that not a dependent clause? Maybe it could stand alone as a pointed answer to a question in casual conversation but that doesn't seem like something a grammar...

    “Because the dog ran away”

    Forgive my ignorance, but how is that not a dependent clause? Maybe it could stand alone as a pointed answer to a question in casual conversation but that doesn't seem like something a grammar teacher would be espousing. Wouldn't it need to be "Because he was mistreated, the dog ran away" for it to be an independent clause?

    4 votes
  7. Comment on Quarter shortage creates a two-bit black market in coin-operated Seattle in ~finance

    streblo
    Link Parent
    Canada got rid of our penny in 2015 or so and I can tell you no one misses it. I wish they also got rid of the nickel and dime as well.

    Canada got rid of our penny in 2015 or so and I can tell you no one misses it. I wish they also got rid of the nickel and dime as well.

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

    streblo
    Link
    I've been brewing up a new EDH deck. Don't have all the cards yet, but I've been playtesting with proxies and forge-mtg and I think I'm getting close to being happy with it. It's an esper...

    I've been brewing up a new EDH deck. Don't have all the cards yet, but I've been playtesting with proxies and forge-mtg and I think I'm getting close to being happy with it.

    It's an esper reanimator deck with Sefris of the Hidden Ways at the helm. Esper has always been my favourite of the shards (or wedges) and reanimator is always fun so I'm quite happy to have had this turn out. Plus the art on her is amazing, Ryan Pancoast is so good.

    Decklist

    Primer

    I'm not going to claim it's the most powerful deck but it's certainly fun and will win games at middling power levels. It could definitely be pushed further but I don't want to spend a fortune on the manabase and I have a few pet cards in there like Archon of Cruelty over better synergistic alternatives.

    3 votes
  9. Comment on Why do we use Tildes? in ~tildes

    streblo
    Link
    I think there's two main reasons: Tildes is like a taste of ~2005 internet back before aggregators took over forums. It's a small community where you recognize a lot of the names and over time...

    I think there's two main reasons:

    Tildes is like a taste of ~2005 internet back before aggregators took over forums.

    It's a small community where you recognize a lot of the names and over time come to know a little bit about the people behind the handles. There's occasional drama of course but everyone is quite respectful even in disagreement which is pretty rare these days.

    Tildes also has several high quality commenters who elevate discussion and make me evaluate my own opinions. That really helps drive long term engagement in a world where most people are eager to read content rather than write it.

    8 votes
  10. Comment on John McWhorter: ‘Woke racism’ has betrayed Black America in ~humanities

    streblo
    Link Parent
    Which is chiefly where we disagree I think. I don't think the original reply was out of bounds (at least without knowing what McWhorter said). If people don't want to interact with this thread...

    the kind of people who don't want to see the initial comment on this website at all because it alienates them or makes them upset have already fled this thread and are already less likely to interact with the website.

    Which is chiefly where we disagree I think. I don't think the original reply was out of bounds (at least without knowing what McWhorter said). If people don't want to interact with this thread over that that's fine but this is ~humanities, those kinds of discussions are relevant. I don't think we should not have them in the interest of making ~humanities a totally safe space.

    This is provably false - users have been banned from this website for acting in bad faith.

    I never said no one has been banned -- but without knowing exactly how many people have been banned and given how many users we have currently there would have to have been a lot of bans for us to have the same level of bad faith actors as say, Reddit.

    1 vote
  11. Comment on John McWhorter: ‘Woke racism’ has betrayed Black America in ~humanities

    streblo
    Link Parent
    OK thanks for clarifying -- I think that's a fair statement. I will add though that often times when I address a single detail of a post I'm not doing it to undermine but rather I'm implicitly...

    Apologies if it was not clear, the request was in the context of a short reply to a long, well sourced, well thought out reply. The reply hyper-focused on one aspect of the detailed response and did not address anything else in the post. If the reply had at the very least acknowledged the heart of the response or even had a very short "I agree with what you're saying, but...", then I don't think it would have triggered any kind of response to me.

    OK thanks for clarifying -- I think that's a fair statement. I will add though that often times when I address a single detail of a post I'm not doing it to undermine but rather I'm implicitly agreeing with the points I'm not addressing. I can try to make the more explicit in the future.

    I think the class is a good example of how to do it right. Surely they spent time on the subject, evaluating the nuances and exploring in depth what evidence supported the current theory. This is an appropriate place to broach these kinds of topics because everyone is on the same field and an expert is around to answer questions. Pontificating on the internet can also be a place to gain knowledge, have conversations, and learn from others, but the playing field is very different - we can't treat the two in the same way or even evaluate the two through the same lens.

    I hear what you're saying because yes, the classroom is probably more ideal than a forum but I think limiting these discussions to university campuses under the supervision of an adult is both elitist and assumes far too little of the participants. Yes, audience and context are important. I'm not going to try and discuss these topics in the comments of a YT video but I see no reason why we shouldn't be able to discuss them here. We have a decent tool to combat people who would act in bad faith -- a reasonable and responsive administrator and an ability to ban/suspend accounts. We also have the advantage of a very small audience -- we're just not going to attract the level of bad faith actors that exist on other parts of the internet.

    3 votes
  12. Comment on John McWhorter: ‘Woke racism’ has betrayed Black America in ~humanities

    streblo
    Link Parent
    I guess step one would be determining how we can determine something is problematic without actually seeing it. Like I said, I'm not familiar enough with McWhorter to know one way or another re:...

    What I can tell you, however, is that when I see a potentially problematic take, I'm compelled to respond and add context explaining why a take is problematic. I do this because I care about making this space inviting to the people I want to see on this website.

    I guess step one would be determining how we can determine something is problematic without actually seeing it. Like I said, I'm not familiar enough with McWhorter to know one way or another re: the original statement but I have read a column or two of his in the NYT and I know enough to know at least some of his arguments aren't entirely without merit. I understand you don't care about McWhorter and were just responding to the claim of the claim but at that point everything is so nebulous that discussion isn't useful -- it's better to ask for context than to assume it. Not to pick on you, but as an example of what I mean re: context void I'm going to quote another of your replies:

    I completely agree, but I find it very hard to assume good faith when we're talking in the context of replies to someone pointing out where the author makes claims like 'black people are just predisposed to violence or "just dim"'.

    McWhorter doesn't make those claims!

    He writes

    But…the data makes it very clear that black boys do commit more violent acts in schools.

    and from the article

    The media label Kendi and DiAngelo "leading scholars," but their arguments are rarely tested in the marketplace of ideas. Both refuse to debate opponents. McWhorter calls their work far from scholarly—"more like a toxic religion, a cult."

    In fact, he adds, "Kendi is dim."

    Getting these sorts of things correct is important -- people just want to engage topics at a surface level by reading the headline and the comments which just further drives this lack of all nuance and context when incorrect assumptions get picked up and carried far and wide.

    But I am also stuck in my own head and cannot possibly understand your thought process. Can you help explain to me how what I am doing is hanging a metaphorical sword over your head or this discussion?

    The sword analogy isn't trying to paint you as violent, sorry for that. But taking into consideration the entire emotional impact of the audience of an internet post is hugely different than just asking people to be polite, respectful and discuss in good faith. I can't possibly know who's going to read my comments or if they're going to be offended in some way, so beyond being respectful and polite (OK, still working on that) and arguing in good faith I pretty much draw the line unless someone requests otherwise. But I don't see how any of this previous discussion would warrant such a request, so blanket requests on these topics seems stifling to me.

    I took a CRT class more than a decade ago (way before it was cool). I read Charles Mills' The Racial Contract from cover to cover and really enjoyed the class. It was provocative, taught by a black American and truly shifted my perspective of the world. But we didn't just cover critical theories -- we also explored the topic from within more liberal frameworks and looked at a lot of criticism as well. The discourse was a little different at the time, but something like an argument similar to what I've read from McWhorter wouldn't be out of place. There has to be room to explore these topics without worrying about the reactions from the entire Internet writ large. Part of that is going to involve reading the other side of the argument before we assume what they're saying.

    8 votes
  13. Comment on John McWhorter: ‘Woke racism’ has betrayed Black America in ~humanities

    streblo
    Link Parent
    We have no context! The original reply you have a problem with provided none, and says very little beyond resting behind someone else's assertions. What are those assertions? Are they problematic?...

    in the context of a problematic viewpoint.

    We have no context! The original reply you have a problem with provided none, and says very little beyond resting behind someone else's assertions. What are those assertions? Are they problematic? We don't know! I'm not really interested in defending the comment because it doesn't really add anything to the discussion without that context but there's nothing inherently wrong with the reply at face value, assuming McWhorter does make that argument as described and in good faith. I've never read any of his stuff, maybe the guy is an asshole. But if we're going to discuss his work let's actually discuss it and not debate these third hand accounts of what he might or might not be saying.

    People have emotions and certain topics are emotionally charged. I beg of you to consider the emotional state of others when discussing these topics

    The emotional state of all possible readers is not a sword that needs to hang above every reasonable discussion on the internet, least of all the ~humanities board on a website overwhelmingly populated by reasonable people.

    6 votes
  14. Comment on How a New Hampshire libertarian utopia was foiled by bears in ~humanities

    streblo
    Link Parent
    I'll agree to disagree there, "black" is also historically linked to Whiteness (Blackness?) but we also need a method in our language to just talk about skin color regardless of the words' origins...

    Ahh, see, this I do disagree with. "white" has never historically had a meaning outside of what you call capital-W Whiteness, and trying to discuss it in that way isn't particularly useful.

    I'll agree to disagree there, "black" is also historically linked to Whiteness (Blackness?) but we also need a method in our language to just talk about skin color regardless of the words' origins being a method of othering. In contemporary language, black and white fill that role.

    2 votes
  15. Comment on John McWhorter: ‘Woke racism’ has betrayed Black America in ~humanities

    streblo
    Link Parent
    I agree with all of that but can you point out any examples of this happening in this thread? This is exactly what I'm talking about -- discussions occurring in a context void just end up with...

    Blaming a culture is not a new tactic and it has been employed for thousands of years to discriminate against ethnicity, religion, sexuality, gender, chosen activity/hobby, standing in society (such as castes), and just about any characteristic that can become a culture.

    I agree with all of that but can you point out any examples of this happening in this thread?

    This is exactly what I'm talking about -- discussions occurring in a context void just end up with people projecting whatever they want onto the other side of the argument (regardless of what their intent is) and it's not productive.

    11 votes
  16. Comment on John McWhorter: ‘Woke racism’ has betrayed Black America in ~humanities

    streblo
    Link Parent
    I don't really see that statement as supporting your original statement. However, it also leads me to believe that his descriptions of culture does at least reference culture as an environmental...

    I don't really see that statement as supporting your original statement. However, it also leads me to believe that his descriptions of culture does at least reference culture as an environmental product; although I'm sure many reasonable people could disagree with the work 'former' is doing that in his sentence.

    Anyways, discussing something specific without specificity is never productive. I think we should do better to add context to our discussions rather than strip it. This isn't directed just at you but to Tildes as a whole.

    5 votes
  17. Comment on John McWhorter: ‘Woke racism’ has betrayed Black America in ~humanities

    streblo
    Link Parent
    The original claim was Is this even true? Can we get a quote or passage? It doesn't make sense to me to wax poetic about very abstract statements we are constructing in our minds -- we have no...
    • Exemplary

    The original claim was

    McWhorter's position on this is that the increased violence is a cultural factor, not a genetic one

    Is this even true? Can we get a quote or passage?

    It doesn't make sense to me to wax poetic about very abstract statements we are constructing in our minds -- we have no idea what we're even debating at this point or if the statement is in good faith or even if it exists at all! The statement as I have quoted above could very well be anything. It's certainly possible to ascribe something onto culture while acknowledging the existence of systemic affects on cultures and interactions between cultures; it's also possible that's it's intentionally grossly misleading-- but we have no idea! Without details and context we're not actually discussing anything at all we're just projecting what we want to hear onto opposing arguments which is even worse than just avoiding this discussion altogether.

    8 votes
  18. Comment on How a New Hampshire libertarian utopia was foiled by bears in ~humanities

    streblo
    Link Parent
    I don't think were disagreeing moreso misunderstanding. @FlippantGod states that colonialism and white supremacy are literally different things. You are disagreeing along a different axis -- the...

    I don't think were disagreeing moreso misunderstanding.

    @FlippantGod states that colonialism and white supremacy are literally different things. You are disagreeing along a different axis -- the two have a history intrinsically linked. I think both statements are valid but the reason I responded to you is that

    What? Do you think it's a coincidence that the vast majority of colonizer nations are white-majority nations, or that racial pseudoscience was created and used by those nations to justify their genocides? I truly do not understand this take.

    I initially read this as white people are genetically prone to colonialism. That's obviously not what you meant and I understand the point you're making now but I think being more explicit is useful. We can talk about white people without talking about Whiteness and vice versa -- so when your point references white nations my mind doesn't jump to Whiteness but rather whites.

    2 votes
  19. Comment on How a New Hampshire libertarian utopia was foiled by bears in ~humanities

    streblo
    Link Parent
    But we're using circular logic that point. White colonizers, through the process of colonization, established a system of Whiteness. Whiteness enabled and required further colonization. That's...

    I very much think they do have to do with each other, in the same way that being wet has to do with getting water on oneself.

    But we're using circular logic that point. White colonizers, through the process of colonization, established a system of Whiteness. Whiteness enabled and required further colonization. That's certainly not why most colonizers were white.

    Most colonizers are white because of the set of environmental factors that led Europe to become the dominant military/technological region of the time.

    3 votes
  20. Comment on How a New Hampshire libertarian utopia was foiled by bears in ~humanities

    streblo
    Link Parent
    Whiteness, as a social construct, has nothing to do with why the vast majority of colonizer nations are white-majority nations. It's one of my biggest qualms with the term Whiteness -- people...

    Do you think it's a coincidence that the vast majority of colonizer nations are white-majority nations, or that racial pseudoscience was created and used by those nations to justify their genocides?

    Whiteness, as a social construct, has nothing to do with why the vast majority of colonizer nations are white-majority nations. It's one of my biggest qualms with the term Whiteness -- people start conflating white and Whiteness and all of the sudden people are shouting at each other along totally different axis.

    2 votes