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More adventurous than the average bear

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Monday, March 16, 2015

Links - 16th March 2015

Internet Explorer 12 to shed legacy cruft in bid to BEAT Chrome - "According to the prolific Redmond rumormongers at Neowin, the software giant has forked the code for IE's Trident rendering engine into a new, leaner version that should consume fewer resources – and Windows 10 will ship with both versions."

I'm an atheist, but I have no interest in joining your 'movement' - "It wasn’t until relatively recently that I realized that not all believers center their every decision around religion: for them, their religious convictions are something softer to check in with from time to time, not the brash fire-and-brimstone philosophies I saw from those who made religious identity their public faces. For some people, belief is a part of their lives, not the whole of their identity. For me, atheism is similar: my life is bigger than my non-belief. I have the freedom to find my own community of believers and non-believers – of people who share my interests and those who don’t – who I just enjoy for who they are. God, or no-god, has nothing to do with that."

What it’s Really Like Being a Lawyer in Singapore - "the legal industry experiences embarrassingly high attrition rates, with 3 out of 4 local lawyers leaving practice within the first 10 years. If attractive salaries aren’t enough to keep them in practice, something must be wrong... The general consensus amongst the young lawyers I spoke with was that law pays well enough, but the high salaries come at a price—awful work-life balance. While there are (admittedly rare) exceptions, most lawyers work a minimum of 10-12 hours a day, with many working until the wee hours of the morning in the weeks before an important deadline... “I hate being chained to my phone even when I am on leave,” he says. “It’s like I don’t deserve a break. I despise the fact that clients have no respect for my personal time and even the bosses expect work to be done over the weekends and while on leave”... “I’ve been a litigation lawyer for 3 years already and I still feel bloody clueless,” says, Brian, 30. “When you first start practising, you’re basically thrown in the deep end, and most of the time you have to figure things out on your own because your boss is too busy and stressed out to hold your hand”... “Take up dentistry instead,” says Nigel. “You get paid a decent salary but you leave at 6 on the dot.”"

The Dutch Artist Who Turned His Dead Cat Into A Drone Is Keeping A Badger In His Freezer To Build A Submarine - "Jansen managed to get his hands on a juvenile white tip reef shark from a local aquarium that had died of a bacterial infection, and the enterprising Dutchman strapped wings and a jet engine to the animal before sending it soaring through the air. Now Bart Jansen's at it again. When a friend offered him a dead badger, he immediately accepted, and soon settled on a use for it: a submarine. The project is called "Das Boot," a play on the famous German U-boat film "Das Boot," as well as the Dutch word for "badger" — "das."

Genetic Testing and Tribal Identity - "Some of the questions geneticists seek to answer are also provocative among Native Americans. The first is the issue of migration: Where did different people come from? Who colonized the United States first? Where did they go once they arrived? These are questions that archaeologists and geneticists are really interested in because they help paint a picture of how migrations patterns occurred in the United States before white settlers arrived, and how European settlement changed things. But figuring out where your ancestors came from becomes complicated when it entails a legacy of exclusion of displacement. Tribes each have important cultural histories, that include their origin stories. Many of their histories say that the tribe came from the land, that they arose there and have always lived there. And many of them have more modern histories that include white settlers challenging their right to live where they did. So to many tribal people, having a scientist come in from the outside looking to tell them where they’re “really” from is not only uninteresting, but threatening. “We know who we are as a people, as an indigenous people, why would we be so interested in where scientists think our genetic ancestors came from?” asks Kim Tallbear, a researcher at the University of Texas at Austin, the author of Native American DNA: Tribal Belonging and the False Promise of Genetic Science, and a member of the Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate tribe... Once he was asking a tribe to do two studies: one on migration patterns and one on diabetes. He expected they might reject his work on their history, but instead they said no to the health study. Apparently a nearby tribe had cooperated with a researcher looking into a health question, and the results of the study hadn’t been all that complimentary to the community. “‘We’d rather not go down that path,’ they said.”"
Disease comes about from evil spirits. Why would we be interested in what scientists think causes disease?

Business | More Youths Believe In Ufos Than Social Security - Poll - "According to its poll, only 9 percent of people between the ages of 18 and 34 believe Social Security will have the money to pay their retirement benefits. Just over one-fourth say Social Security will still exist when they retire, compared with 46 percent who think that there are unidentified flying objects, or UFOs."

Most diners would not pay for tap water at a restaurant, Straits Times online poll shows - "Around one in 10 restaurants now charge for water, at least twice the number from just two years ago. They typically charge between 30 cents and 80 cents."
Where do you get stats on who charges for water?!

Cyber-harrasment & cyber-bullying - "Arguing politics online. It gets heated and the people get vicious. Just scan through the comments section on political websites or Facebook pages and you can see the ugly side of people very quickly. But now, a Facebook page has the dubious honor of hitting a new low. Fabrications About the PAP, a Facebook page started and run by Jason Chua Chin Seng, has resorted to cyber-bullying a netizen whose only crime seems to be saying what people don’t want to hear. For that, he had his profile picture and “offending” comment posted on the page."

Singaporean Bragged of Sex With Girl In Cambodia - "Mr. Seila said, however, that Singapore should not have used Cambodia’s reputation as a haven for pedophiles as a means of incriminating possible child abusers. “Sex offenders should not be attracted to Cambodia for whatever investigative purposes,” he said. “We are already vulnerable, our children are already vulnerable to sex offenders.”"

Tinder in Brooklyn

Dear Prudence: Feminists are upset that I don’t have much sexism to complain about in my STEM career. - "Q. Excessive Feminists: I’m a woman in a very masculine scientific field, and I’ve found that many women involved in feminist circles want to hear about my experience. I absolutely agree that there are biases against women in the workplace and love a good discussion, but I have never really suffered from sexism. First, I’m young enough (27) that I’m not eligible for senior positions anyway, and second, I’ve never been flirted with in an inappropriate manner, or felt I wasn’t listened to. Maybe I’m just awesome at playing the man’s game (or in denial and don’t have an eye for sexism?). More probably, I landed in a great environment that just suffers from a dearth of females because there are too few candidates. But even quite reasonable and pleasant women get aggressive when I don’t have anything to contribute to their list of crimes committed by the patriarchy. I don’t want to lie, but I’m not sure how to handle inquiries when I can’t give them the story they want.
A: How strange that people who say they are fighting for equality are dismayed when they encounter it. How sad that they don’t want to hear the good news that you have been welcomed into this traditionally male field, that your male peers and bosses treat you wonderfully, and that you are thriving. It’s exciting this has been your experience—what a great ambassador you can be for younger women seeking to enter your field. There is an unfortunate strain of obsessive grievance-mongering in feminism today. It’s a kind of sport for these self-proclaimed guardians to venomously attack those they feel don’t precisely toe their line. You’re a scientist who lives in the world of facts. You are finding that ideologues aren’t interested in facts, thus they go after you when your reality trumps their ideology. My general advice is that it’s best not to engage with unpleasant people, especially those who seek to lecture you about your own experiences. Feel free to extract yourself and say, “You’ll have to excuse me, but I’ve got to get back to the lab.” But if you feel like it, you can also counterpunch by saying something like, “It’s funny, but the only people who try to bully me are women who aren’t in my profession.”"

Is that woman pregnant or fat? - "1. Listen for huffing and puffing
2. Belly or back-rubbing
3. Check the feet
4. What's she reading?
5. Inflated ankles
6. A waddling walk
7. A well-defined and solid bump will clearly not be squishy fat"
Comments: "After being verbally abused for offering my seat to a woman who very much looked like she was nine months pregnant, I haven't done it since, unless i am completely sure. Using the seven steps given would not really have helped as the only thing she wasn't doing was reading was a baby book!"
"Why is it so important to give up seats to pregnant women? What about people with conditions such as cancer, diabetes, heart disease, or those who've recently had surgery? They're on public transport too. They never stand there choking back tears of indignant anger when no one offers them a seat, and they're in far more need of one than pregnant women are. This I know from personal experience."
"I was once confronted with the usual "Is she fat/isn't she" dilemma when I found myself getting in such a stew I found the easiest solution was to simply get off the tube at the next stop and get the next one! "
"If I were a 'plump' woman who was offered a seat I'd just play along with it, rub my belly hold my back as I took the seat and think - it's not all bad being a little overweight..."
"I once witnessed a guy on a tube say to an average size lady "If you're pregnant you can have my seat, if you're just fat you can stand". Quick as a flash she replied "I'm pregnant" and took his seat. Once seated she added "I'm also a very good liar and you are a *******!""
"I will gladly offer my seat to an elderly person , I believe that you choose to get pregnant , but aging is one thing you cant avoid!"

13 things that have been banned by UK universities - "Blurred Lines
“Racist” Fancy Dress
The Sun and Daily Star
‘Lads Mags’
Dapper Laughs
George Galloway
A Satirical Jesus/Mohammed T-shirt
Payday Loan Adverts
Pub crawls
Sunbed Advertisements
Julie Bindel
A pineapple Mohammed"
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