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About BurntBread

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  1. BurntBread


    I see a fair few anecdotals that don't agree with what I'd like to think is happening out there. However, I'm guessing that's not what you mean by "trolling"; at least I wouldn't call it that, and it's never been uncommon?
  2. BurntBread

    Merkel’s Coronation, or the german election 2017

    Does that mean the revolution will start on a Saturday morning?
  3. BurntBread

    When the oil (and sand) runs out

    Ah, I thought somebody might have come up with a good theoretical reason (or lots of data) to expect a ~50% over-shoot after colonization.
  4. BurntBread

    When the oil (and sand) runs out

    I don't have any knowledge of requirements for different uses, but not all sands are created equal. Desert sands have even, rounded grains, and are useless for some things (e.g. I vaguely remember being told that the UK exports quite a lot of sand to Saudi (or used to, when I briefly studied geology), for some filtration process in oil production). It might be worse than that, if I'm understanding that sketch as applying to a species invading a new area. We could now be expanding in population to meet the current carrying-capacity of a world rich in oil (since oil is such a large component of food production). However, wouldn't the carrying capacity itself shrink rapidly and permanently as oil becomes scarce?
  5. BurntBread

    Smallest books in the world

    Littlewood once asked whether someone could write a good mathematics doctoral thesis in one line? His answer was "yes", and he gave an example. Robert Robinson used to say that "the national dish of America is the menu" - i.e. they're great at describing really disappointing food.
  6. @The XYY Man, @eight: "... Batman can go out without Robin."
  7. BurntBread

    Time for a new laptop?

    I'm guessing new gaming laptops are expensive because the chips in new graphics cards are expensive ... because of crypto. However, an old laptop is probably not going to be a purchase for currency miners, so can you not just buy the same model, but second hand? Maybe discretely ask the seller about the level of his/her belly-button fluff first, to avoid a repeat failure in the near future?
  8. BurntBread

    Bye bye Treason May?

    I don't know. That may be absolutely true, legally, but it wouldn't surprise me if the leader at the time of the election is a significant part of why many people support the party they do. It may not often be a big enough factor to swing them to a different party were the current leader crap, but it's a big part of the package. I often hear people saying "I wouldn't vote for C orbyn", or "May has lost them my vote" etc. So, I'd argue that a lot of people do, in practice, vote for a PM (i.e. have a say in who will be the next PM at the time of a GE, and feel cheated if they don't), even if that's not the model that would be taught in civics classes (if such a thing existed here). Politics is as much about appearances as anything else. There is no libel attached to saying "X was an unelected PM", and enough people feel it in their hearts to have some truth that it's an effective political weapon. Therefore I would argue that it is (a component of) the political reality.
  9. BurntBread


    Best avatar: @SNACR, without a doubt.
  10. BurntBread

    Trump, Tariffs, Comparative Advantage

    All my information is out of date, but about 15 years ago, I used to know a very good Chinese academic working in the Netherlands in industry (phys chem). At the time, he was quite disparaging about the state of fundamental research in China. However, shortly afterwards, there was some initiative introduced, and he was offered a nice deal by the Chinese government to go back: his own lab, guaranteed funding for a certain number of years, guaranteed access to big experimental facilities. Anyway, he went, and whether this policy was a big part of it or not, the quality (and even more so, the quantity) of Chinese research has been heading ever up. The last time I had much to do with a research lab in China was about 6 or 7 years ago, and it was absolutely striking that you could tell the difference between researchers who had spent time abroad (usually in the US), and those who had never left China. They weren't different in terms of what skills they had, it's just that the ones with foreign experience would actually question what they were doing, or suggest things the boss hadn't suggested first. Doing one post-doc abroad seemed to be enough, and the ones that hadn't done it were strikingly less effective at actually doing science (rather than "just" technical work). What I hear now (and I'm pretty out of touch, so please correct me if you know better), is that over there, CAS is seen as more prestigious than any western university, and there is more encouragement for students to stay in China to have all their education and research experience. I don't know whether they have solved the "questioning authority" problem that I observed before, or whether all the successful research groups are headed by US educated Chinese professors, but, as I say, there's a lot of good work going on over there now.
  11. BurntBread

    Impostors from TOS

    I agree with you: He (she?) has built up, to all appearances, a deep expertise in banking and finance, and has done that as a hobby. He should be an absolute treasure of the site (and on his more amenable days, he is). The thing is, if he then fumigates the place so thoroughly there isn't a fucker left alive to read it, what's the point?
  12. BurntBread

    Impostors from TOS

    As I said before (on the other "the other site" thread) I liked Venger, and usually read at least the first part of all his posts. He was a powerful debater, and always in good faith, just trying to continually sharpen his point of view (further and further and further). I found his digging up past posting history to be problematic, as it made it hard for people to re-shape their opinions during the debate (which is the whole point of serious engagement), but my guess is the same as Hopeful's: I think he would respect anyone who changed their views explicitly. I'm pretty sure he's back under a new name, with a slight change of vocabulary and subject, but the same underlying style. So, I think the Hovis criterion for on-line identity might need to be refined, as he has a different name, avatar, opinions and (apparent) knowledge, but I think he's the same poster. Venger was someone you could recognise literally within the first half-dozen words of any of his posts (sometimes the first two or three). Like "Banned from HPC", I'm much less keen on "chairman of the bored" / bland unsight / pumpkin mua'adib / beary whatever, who would regularly change user name and avatar simultaneously, but would be recognizable within a couple of dozen words. Extremely intelligent, very detail-oriented, he was the genuine Jekyll and Hyde character: half the time he was extremely well informed on mortgage related finance, and the other half he was bullying, nit-picking and intimidating. I simply couldn't read some of the threads he was on, it was so painful. If I completely leave the site, he's the sole reason. Anyway, both of them also post(ed) great walls of text, which I'm equally guilty of. I'll try to rein in the verbal diarrhoea a bit.
  13. BurntBread


    I always thought the troll sub-forum was going to be much more interesting than it turned out to be. Maybe DOSBODS can make more of it?
  14. No, I still don't have the bandwidth, and prefer not to watch video in general. As I said, I did make a (partial) attempt to read the book, as you had gone to the trouble of bringing it to my attention after learning of my eccentricity.
  15. @Carl Fimble Got the link, and yes, you didn't recommend it to me as a book you had read, just as a book which might contain similar arguments to a video you did recommend that was entitled "The Jewish role in the porn industry". Your actual post is exactly half way down this page. I guess I just remembered you recommending that I should read the book, and forgot that you had said you hadn't read it yourself. I am somewhat puzzled, for obvious reasons, but perhaps the video used language which, when typed into a search engine, was likely to turn up a book by a self-proclaimed Nazi and admirer of Hitler. I'm not sure that, in your place, I would immediately have passed on such a link, though. So, I have made deductions that did not follow from the facts as they are, but I hope you can understand how, through coincidence and a poor memory, I might have come away with a particular impression of you. Coming back to the topic of the thread, I am actually interested in how the holocaust happened, so I was rather hoping that we did have a relic from 1930's Germany here. I don't find all their beliefs repugnant, and I would have enjoyed a civil discussion on the mechanism by which a racial fracture in society was levered open, by means of authoritarian, but arguably mostly decent people, to allow all the demons of hell out of the depths.