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Posts posted by Oligo

  1. I assume it's been taken care of by experts in the formulating of theories - but what about whim and irrational behaviour?  

    Acting contrary to reason with no particular basis is seen in human behaviour, but would it be seen where an animal is acting purely on instinct?

    Human brains are not clones of each other. The are all different, some more different from each other than others. The differences are caused by both genetics and the environment the brain was surrounded with from birth to present. When you talk about acting contrary to reason, you're really talking about acting contrary to YOUR reason.

    A masochist, for example, would enjoy pain, because his brain is wired that way. It would be perfectly reasonable for him to engage in activity, which causes pain. Thus every decision of an animal and human brain is produced by the reason currently at large in that brain.

    Take that to a more complex level, including the purely random events on atomic level, and you have a brain which produces quite skewed solutions, but those solutions are still based on the programming of the brain. A causes B, but we cannot derive from B what A was.

  2. Before Copernicus, the earth was center of the world and everything else was moving somehow around it. Observations forced the astronomers, to create complicated mathematic equotations and tables to predict the move of the planets according to that model. And some of those formulas and tables would still work today. And if their formulas and tables failed, it was because the formulas and tables were wrong/incomplete and not because the model was wrong.

    It is a matter of perception, really. If you lock the coordinate axes of space to the center of Earth, then everything really IS orbiting Earth, albeit the orbits look really funky. I once coded a small program, which simulated the behaviour of planets in the gravity fields of our solar system. That program had on option to lock the perception to Earth, providing a set of really goofy orbits of other bodies of our solar system.

    It is just that the calculations become much easier, if you lock the coordinate axes to the center of the sun.

  3. Quote[/b] ]Are we though free to choose? Perhaps we are as free as we know ourselves to be. Perhaps the sincere belief or existence of the idea that we are free to think and choose can set into motion events causing the mind to cede control of a thought or choice we are considering to random mechanisms? I do not have unusual knowledge of brain functions so perhaps not though.

    Things brings to my mind a discussion I had with one of my friends, who is studying to be a doctor. He is thinking about specializing in neurology, so he has taken a lot of courses on it. We were drinking in a bar and discussing life, universe and everything.

    He said to me that according to current theories, everything a human does can be easily explained as if it was purely instinctive behaviour (humans can learn new instincts), even the most complex tasks of theoretical thinking. There is no need for a concept of free will to explain the observations we can make about human behaviour. And I agree with him, since the simplest theory is quite often correct, I have seen it often enough in my research. So I say, prove it that human behaviour cannot be explained by just instinctive reactions to the input from the environment (including the randomness of the quatum world and cosmic radiation effects, etc.). Prove it that a concept like "free will" is needed to explain the observations.

    Quote[/b] ]I think you will be hard pressed to find anything that has meaning to a lion. If it doesnt kill its own species or young (though many animals do it ) might it not be because of some smells and other signals that it has been genetically programmed to respond to by desisting from killing (at the least and perhaps engaging in other behaviour)? Does anything have 'meaning' to a lion including the death of its own offspring?

    What is "meaning"? Humans don't kill their young, because we have been programmed by our parents (who were programmed by their parents) not to kill the young. There is also probably a genetic instinct at play. So does losing a child have any "meaning" to a human, except the negative feedback caused by breaking the programming?

    Why do we need (except for reasons of vanity) to try to draw a line between our behaviour and that of animals, when the observations again suggest that the simplest theory is correct (that there is no line, no distinction)?

    Why climb ass-forward to a tree?

  4. Its interesting, i sure at some late stage foetuses do gain some limited awareness (some people even claim to remember it) but i felt if i asked if killing babies was murder surely almost everyone would say yes. Does killing a baby have meaning? Certainly you're extinguishing a great potential. A baby could become anything, but in the days weeks or months after birth is a baby an individual?

    But killing babies only has meaning for humans, solely because we have an instinct to avoid slaying our young (a good survival strategy, yes?). Killing and eating a human baby has no meaning to a lion, for example, nor does killing lion cubs have any meaning to male lions.

    So you see, in order for some act to be "wrong", the entity who performs the act has to have an inbuilt instinct not to do it. But what if it is a human who is a psychopath, totally lacking any restrictions a normal human has? Is it still murder, since it wasn't murder in the case of a lion, which similarly has no inbuilt restrictions against killing human babies?

    In the end, there is no such thing as good and evil. All you have are the totally arbitrary rules (arbitrary because they cannot be justified logically) that you must follow. If you don't, your peers will kill or imprison you. The funny part is that the rules originated from the need to survive, not from some esoteric good/evil.

  5. This is just bullshit. Where is the website of "UltraModAgri"? Why hasn't Dr. Vincent Tartley ever published anything in a scientific magazine?

    Besides, can you spell "genetically modified food"? That stuff has such a bad rep in U.K. in particular that it would never ever get approved.

  6. </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote ([TU]$33ker @ 12 May 2003,10:27)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">the Netherlands? I wouldn't go there just for cheese... biggrin.gif  tounge.gif

    Bundeswehr never could invade France in it's current situation.<span id='postcolor'>

    Ahh, this reminds me of the nice little campaign me and my friend played in Steel Panthers 2. It was about a delicious little war between France and Germany in modern Europe.

    The backstory was that a french nuclear reactor (which are by the way positioned near the borders of france) blows up and contaminates a part of Germany. The germans get pissed and demand the french to turn off other reactors nearby germany. When the french tell the germans to go spank a monkey, germans decide to go and shut down those reactors themselves...

    It was a nice campaign. Lots of dead Le'clercs and Leopards. The germans BTW won... wink.gif

  7. </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (Col. Kurtz @ 19 May 2003,13:27)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">Well... You see... Umm... These are special machines that can only take sunlight and human energy crazy.gif<span id='postcolor'>

    Oh, sort of like only the special mushrooms and special cigarettes make you fly?

    I still would have wanted to see the One fluffy bunny fighting fluffy bunny agents in bullet time.

  8. I liked the first Matrix movie and I'm going to see Reloaded, when it comes out here. I just love virtual reality, the effect it causes (you don't know what is real anymore and what is not) is just beautiful.

    But one point, boys and girls, which sort of screws up the whole plot of the whole Matrix concept: If you want batteries, why not use fluffy bunnies or bacteria? Those would be a lot easier to control. Fluffy bunnies produce way more heat per weight unit than humans, because they have a faster metabolism. So do bacteria.


  9. What I think was cool about the original OFP campaign was that the "information" that the player as a U.S. soldier was fed very nicely resembled the type of BS real soldiers in a real war would be fed. No warring faction will ever tell their soldiers: "We're the bad guys, let's roll". And because of the editor, you could always make scenarios where you play the russians and where you are fed BS about how the americans are bad and so forth. Thus, when playing the game, I could easily imagine that the whole conflict was about two rival superpowers with dubious motives rattling saber, not about liberating or occupying some hickville islands. And each soldier in the game, be them from either side, was solely motivated by their own survival and the survival of their friends.

    Then came the Red Hammer, which was not made by BIS. Red Hammer's plot sucked, because the russians were demonized needlessly (the game sort of took sides). Resistance also went downhill, because all russians were pictured as psychotic murderers.

    So I wish, whatever conflict OFP2 will model, that the plot of OFP2 would revolve around soldiers trying to survive the fact that their leaders went insane and decided that war will be fought.

  10. </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (Tamme @ 07 May 2003,20:12)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE"></span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (Oligo @ 07 May 2003,08:20)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">I'm not personally a fan of the police<span id='postcolor'>

    Why not? They keep the streets safe and definitely need more money.<span id='postcolor'>

    Cops are in the business of retaliation, not prevention, since they cannot be everywhere all the time (not with all the money in the world). When shit hits the fan, they come and pick up the pieces.

    Luckily most street combat in Finland is still handled with fists and feet. Less casualties that way.

  11. </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (Tamme @ 06 May 2003,17:43)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">They should really cut the culture and sport budgets and put the money in healthcare and police funding. Laws are no good if there's no one to make sure they are followed.<span id='postcolor'>

    Healthcare does not need more funding in Finland. What it needs is a complete overhaul, since most of the funding goes to bureaucracy at the moment. Also, you should get only the minimal healthcare without actually coughing up some money yourself. This is because modern medicine is incredibly expensive and so we cannot possibly provide the best care available for everybody, not even with 100% taxes.

    We don't need any sports budget, since sports pretty much pay for themselves and people want to pay to play sports. Culture, well, pop art obviously pays for itself, but maybe we should throw some scraps to classical arts, just to keep the people happy. Science should be funded generously, since science enhances the competitive edge of companies, which in turn make money for the country. Science efficiently pays for itself.

    Although I'm not personally a fan of the police, I'd say that the current model of pay-by-results assumes that the level of crime is constant and is therefore ridiculous.

  12. Tamme, incidentally it so happens that I'm also a finn and Finland is a perfect example of a democracy with leaders who are populistic morons.

    Finnish leaders don't whine in UN, because we have no external threat to whine about. But when it comes to passing stupid laws in order to curb internal "threats", we are a shining example of it.

    A typical finn is a fellow, who wants to watch ice hockey in peace and ESPECIALLY one who thinks that having kids is the greatest favour you can do to society. That's why the typical mass of finns always votes for the leaders, who are advocating the same family values garbage. That's why we have Tanja Karpela as the culture minister, who according to todays headlines, is Waging War Against Porn.

    Democracy = Rule of dorks.

  13. The problems of U.S. are just the problems all the democracies are facing, but in a greater scale, because all the shit is amplified due to the power and size of U.S.

    All democracies are lead by morons. It's because most of the population of a typical democratic country are solely interested on guzzling beer, getting laid and/or producing children. This mass of people will of course elect leaders, who want to ascertain that the mass of people can continue to procreate and watch sporting events, oblivious to the world around them.

    If this blissfull ignorance is threatened, the moronic leaders will lash out within the limits of their power (a leader of a small country whines in U.N. while U.S. goes to war in case of an "external" threat and stupid laws are passed in case of a domestic "threat").

    As a result, we have the current situation, that is: Democracy = Rule by morons.

  14. </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (denoir @ 28 April 2003,18:20)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">You know, you don't have to be the ruler of Mesopotamia to have a birthday. I have one, each and every year and I havn't even occupied Norway wink.gif<span id='postcolor'>

    Did you know that a finnish author Arto Paasilinna has written a book called "Operation Finlandia". It's about a swedish summer offensive on Finland around the end of 1970s. I haven't actually read it, but those who have say that it is a very funny book.

  15. </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (Sanctuary @ April 24 2003,08:27)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">And a major problem between this virus and a vaccine is the mutation process that will prevent any real solution.

    Even if a vaccine is found, it will be only a temporary solution , as the mutation of the virus will render the vaccine out-dated and so useless afetr a certain period of time.

    That was the real fear of the scientist actually working on the SARS.<span id='postcolor'>

    The average mutation rate of SARS is not known yet. If it is as high as that of HIV, there will be no vaccine. If it is as low as that of smallpox, vaccine will be easy (read ten years).

    Yesterday's statistics in WHO page:

    4288 total cases, 2032 recovered, 251 fatalities.

    Counting from those, I get a 11% fatality rate.  sad.gif And it is not linked to quality of medicare either, since in Canada (140 cases) the mortality rate has so far been 17%. crazy.gif

  16. </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (brgnorway @ April 24 2003,04:20)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">The major problem at hand is that SARS is a virus. It's extremely hard and difficult to find vaccine against viruses, like AIDS for example.<span id='postcolor'>

    You are absolutely correct. The average time for a vaccine development is ten (10) years at the moment. Also, being a virus, there are no drugs available to treat people. All antiviral drugs we have are highly specific for their target viruses and development of antiviral drugs takes even longer than vaccine development.

    I have now researched the use of bacterial viruses in biotechnology (bacteriophages, viruses that infect bacteria) for five years and I can say that those little buggers never cease to amaze me. Some viruses can survive wiping with 96% ethanol, etc.

    Since there hasn't been any other outbreak of this scale during modern times, it remains to be seen whether the few weapons we have are efficient in fighting off SARS.

  17. </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (Mister Frag @ April 24 2003,02:41)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">Don't be surprised if that sailor isn't going to be terribly polite the next time he has shore leave, and if he forever has an unfavorable opinion of you and your fellow countrymen.<span id='postcolor'>

    First of all, I know that he wasn't polite to begin with, since soldiers on leave never are (I know, I have been one). And what some grunt on a foreign military vessel thinks of our country has no impact on the greater scale of things.

    I think it is extremely rude to wear a military uniform on foreign soil, unless on a mission (like peacekeeping). Uniforms present an aura of authority, which vacationing soldiers in a foreign country definitely do not have.

  18. </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (cam0flage @ April 15 2003,13:44)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">The sailors are told every time to take with them their civilian clothes for shore leave, because if you are wearing a sailor's uniform, there's a very good chance that you get beaten up by locals.<span id='postcolor'>

    Hell, me and my mates were once on our way to a pub in this nice coastal harbor town of ours, when we spotted a drunken sailor from some visiting warship. We decided that we didn't want any foreign soldiers on our precious soil screwing our women, so we kicked his ass just to be on the safe side.

    That was a lot of fun. biggrin.gif

  19. </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (Schoeler @ April 23 2003,09:00)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">And, were it not for the united States, the Russians and a few other allies, you might all be typing in German, or, later on down the road, in Russian.<span id='postcolor'>

    Oh, such a simplistic view of WW2. Newsflash: Were it not for the actions of germany in WW2, people would be speaking russian in Paris and there isn't anything U.S. could have done about that.

  20. </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (N.o.R.S.u @ April 14 2003,15:58)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">Hmm isn't "jumalauta" same as "goddammit" (jumala=god). And I usually use "prekele" when I mean "damn" tounge.gif. Some very useful Finnish language indeed biggrin.gif.<span id='postcolor'>

    About linguistics of "jumalauta": We can break that word in two: "jumala" and "auta", so literally translating "jumalauta" would mean "god help" (that's what it probably meant a long time ago). But since that sounds pretty sissy and since nobody is really calling for god to help (quite the opposite) when they say "jumalauta", I'd say it can be safely translated as "damn".

    And what comes to "perkele", well, that is really just another finnish name for the devil (having no inherent meaning in it being a name), just as "fags" is an another british name for cigarettes.