If only (Score: 2)

by in Planet Mercury is Slowly Shrinking on 2014-03-17 12:57 (#M8)

unravelling the pre-plate tectonic (>2-3 Ga) and plate tectonic (

Central in the periodic table (Score: 4, Interesting)

by in A shocking diet: Researchers describe microbe that 'eats' electricity on 2014-03-17 12:52 (#M6)

I've always found it curious/interesting that life appears to rely on/exploit elements central to the periodic table (e.g., C, Si, and now Fe, ...). Any comments on why this is? I realize the electro-magnetic structure is important, but why?

Re: Approval Voting is Under-Rated (Score: 2, Interesting)

by in Approval voting on 2014-03-17 12:41 (#M5)

What interests me more than anything (in the context of a news aggregation/discussion site) are discussions of past or future decisions, i.e., in given circumstances, what have thoughtful people elected to do in the past or plan to do in the future. Based on what comes up, I will follow the lead of others, do something different, or simply learn about the different views that are out there. Almost always, I find such exchanges both fun and helpful.

So, for example:
I liked the recent topic on kids versus adults and learning new tasks because I have kids and I am an adult and I like us all to be learning when possible.
I liked the recent topic on ergonomic office equipment because: a) this hits close to home for me, and b) I get to learn what others have done.

In terms of categories:
technology first (e.g., innovations in Linux distributions, programming workflows, video game system/game preferences, ...)
techno-science ethics second (e.g., is it good to teach/not teach programming to youth, should modern families be preserving stem cells for future health problems, to what extent should business plans place social responsibility over profits or vice versa, etc.)
science third (e.g., what comes after the Higgs boson, the new Mercury shrinking story fits, ...)
techno-politics fourth (e.g., privacy versus convenience, authoritarian design decisions or community-driven, etc.)

So, probably in line with what pipedot is already doing, what slashdot has done (and continues to do), and what soylentnews is trying to do as well. In the end, the community is really what makes it and for some reason (simple design is part of it), I'm quite intrigued by the potential of pipedot to be a fresh take on this community at large.

Re: Kineseis (Score: 1)

by in What do you use for an ergonomic workstation? on 2014-03-16 23:01 (#KY)

Nice write-ups on the Kinesis. I liked the emphasis on Linux.

Re: More options (Score: 2)

by in Which features are the most important? on 2014-03-16 22:57 (#KX)

Thanks for the tip on the RSS feed. This is a feature I want(ed), but hadn't found.

Re: Approval Voting is Under-Rated (Score: 2, Insightful)

by in Approval voting on 2014-03-16 22:54 (#KW)

I also like the fresh take on this site. Hoping it gains a community!

Re: a kit and kaboodle (Score: 1)

by in What do you use for an ergonomic workstation? on 2014-03-16 01:37 (#KC)

Jarred Walton of Anandtech has nice reviews of both the TECK and the Kinesis Advantage .

I've never tried the TECK, so I can't opine. However, I really like the finger "wells" of the Advantage in terms of typing position, and the spacing of the left and right hands as well. These are great design features of the Advantage in my opinion.

Frankly, the puny function keys are a weakness of the Advantage. I reprogrammed my key mapping to put my low use keys like "capslock" up on the puny function keys and more high use function keys down on the main keyboard to compensate.

the human versus the analytical (Score: 3, Insightful)

by in Dicephalic Parapagus Twins Born in India on 2014-03-16 00:25 (#KA)

Human side, I suspect the challenges of this are immense for everyone because it is so atypical.

Analytical side, I wonder whether we could learn a lot about mind-body connections with such a scenario. Do they share the same responses to external stimuli, to placebos, and so on?

the devil (Score: 5, Insightful)

by in U.S. to relinquish remaining control over the Internet on 2014-03-16 00:17 (#K9)

You know or don't know. Which is better? I wonder if things will be better with the change?

It is so hard to anticipate what the internet/www will be in 5 years. I hope that sites like Slashdot, soylentnews, and pipedot are part of it though -- with thoughtful exchanges possible and public on difficult issues.

a kit and kaboodle (Score: 1)

by in What do you use for an ergonomic workstation? on 2014-03-16 00:02 (#K8)

I cannot recommend the Kinesis Advantage enough. It is an awesome ergonomic keyboard. I would not go back to anything less even at $300.

I also use and like: left handed vertical mouse, right-handed handshoe mouse, and an AirTouch table. All are good products and help repetitive use problems. I have a $1000 chair as well -- I don't know the brand, but it is excellent and blows regular office chairs out of the water.

Re: My challenge (Score: 1)

by in Preschoolers Better At Figuring Out How Gadgets Work Than College Students on 2014-03-15 14:06 (#JY)

You're probably onto something there. We learn what has worked in the past and that informs and slows our approach to new problems.

Some people do seem to remain more open and less habitual as they grow up though. Any thoughts on what environmental factors encourage this? I tend to view it as a positive quality.

2016 (Score: 2, Insightful)

by in How America Celebrates Pi Day on 2014-03-15 13:56 (#JX)

Will we celebrate pi day, 2016 especially?

My observation (Score: 2, Insightful)

by in Women Avoid STEM Degrees to Get Better Grades? on 2014-03-14 17:21 (#JG)

is that women are quite prepared to take on hard challenges, courses, whatever, and succeed.

However, anecdotally, the social/community/practical pay-out for effort seems to be a higher requirement for women to justify their commitments, than does anything intrinsic about the specific challenges. It is not clear to me that investment in STEM knowledge has these qualities. Investments in STEM often involve isolated study for mechanical or technical applications -- interactive aspects are not always present or valued. I'm not sure how one would go about testing for these kinds of differences in priority, however, nor whether my hypothesis is complicit in stereo-typing?

Mastering "music" can rival most things in STEM, in my opinion, but the payoff is that people can hear what you have mastered and enjoy it directly.

My challenge (Score: 1)

by in Preschoolers Better At Figuring Out How Gadgets Work Than College Students on 2014-03-14 17:08 (#JE)

is to keep putting fun and safe challenges in front of my kids because they do climb learning curves incredibly swiftly.

I worry about why we lose this free-form learning as we grow up. I don't believe it has to be that way. Do we "teach" it out of people?