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Comment author: Plasmon 20 November 2016 07:32:46AM *  5 points [-]

It remains extremely likely that the em drive will turn out to either not work or work only by known-but-improperly-accounted-for physics (see also: Pioneer anomaly).

Comment author: So8res 04 October 2016 08:41:49PM 2 points [-]

Huh, thanks for the heads up. If you use an ad-blocker, try pausing that and refreshing. Meanwhile, I'll have someone look into it.

Comment author: Plasmon 05 October 2016 05:17:56AM 1 point [-]

Ah yes, pausing ghostery seems to fix it.

Comment author: Plasmon 04 October 2016 04:21:31PM 1 point [-]

Clicking the "Donate now" button under "PayPal or Credit Card" does not seem to do anything other than refresh the page.

(browser Firefox 48.0 , OS Ubuntu)

Comment author: Lumifer 02 April 2016 09:33:08PM 6 points [-]

How do you determine which is right?

Why, you look at what France and other European countries did. We know that whatever they did led to Paris and Brussels. Do you think they radicalized the Muslims by heavy-handed patrolling of Muslim neighbourhoods and being generally oppressive toward them? Or did the European policy involve averting their eyes and issuing proclamations about how Muslims should feel welcome (the term "appeasement" isn't terribly popular)?

Comment author: Plasmon 03 April 2016 01:23:57PM 1 point [-]

We know that whatever they did led to Paris and Brussels

Correlation / Causation?

Comment author: Huluk 26 March 2016 12:55:37AM *  26 points [-]

[Survey Taken Thread]

By ancient tradition, if you take the survey you may comment saying you have done so here, and people will upvote you and you will get karma.

Let's make these comments a reply to this post. That way we continue the tradition, but keep the discussion a bit cleaner.

Comment author: Plasmon 27 March 2016 10:49:32AM 35 points [-]

I have taken the survey.

Comment author: lucidfox 24 November 2015 10:24:04AM 0 points [-]

I wonder: do the names Y'ha-nthlei, Y'not'ha-nthlei, and At'gra'len'ley mean anything? I assume Y'ha and Y'not'ha mean "you have" and "you don't have", but beyond that it just seems random.

Comment author: Plasmon 24 November 2015 12:39:49PM 1 point [-]
Comment author: Good_Burning_Plastic 01 September 2015 06:30:03PM 0 points [-]

"This painting is beautiful" is a statement about the reaction of the speaker's brain upon seeing the painting.

Well, not only the speaker, otherwise it'd be completely equivalent to "I like this painting" which it isn't. It is a claim about ambijective features of the painting -- more or less "this painting has certain features such that brains (at least those raised in cultural contexts similar to us) typically produce pleasant reactions".

Comment author: Plasmon 01 September 2015 07:43:08PM -1 points [-]

As I understand it, "This painting is beautiful" is completely equivalent to "I like (the visual aspects of) this painting".

Definitional arguments are not useful. Even using your interpretation, the point stands: the statement, properly understood, is empirical truth.

Comment author: RichardKennaway 01 September 2015 07:05:46PM *  2 points [-]

I was trying to get at the unnecessary turn into neuroscience.

"This painting is beautiful" is a statement about the reaction of the speaker's brain upon seeing the painting.

Why bring the brain into it? Why not say that "This painting is beautiful" is a statement about the reaction of the speaker? Or, paralleling Good_Burning_Plastic, a statement about the reaction of people generally (at least those raised in etc.)?

Comment author: Plasmon 01 September 2015 07:34:04PM *  0 points [-]

Why bring the brain into it?

No particular reason.

"This painting is beautiful" is a statement about the reaction of the speaker

That is what I mean, yes.

Or, paralleling GoodBurningPlastic, a statement about the reaction of people generally

Whether we define beauty to be the reaction of the speaker, or the reaction of the majority of a certain group of people that are similar to the speaker, is not relevant: in both cases "This painting is beautiful" becomes an empirical truth instead of an "affective" truth.

Comment author: RichardKennaway 01 September 2015 05:40:31PM 3 points [-]

If I say "This painting is beautiful", I mean "my brain produces a pleasant reaction upon seeing this painting".

If I say "This painting is round", do I mean "my brain produces a sensation of roundness upon seeing this painting"?

Comment author: Plasmon 01 September 2015 06:02:47PM *  -2 points [-]

No. "This painting is round" is a statement about the properties of the painting itself, independent of any observer. "This painting is beautiful" is a statement about the reaction of the speaker's brain upon seeing the painting. The syntactical similarity between those different kinds of statements in English (and all other natural languages that I know of) is unfortunate to say the least.

Comment author: Plasmon 01 September 2015 01:57:03PM *  -1 points [-]

I do not think we should dilute the meaning of the word "truth" like this.

If I say "This painting is beautiful", I mean "my brain produces a pleasant reaction upon seeing this painting". The latter sentence is empirical truth. See also 2-Place and 1-Place Words

"This place feel right to me" -- true! Affectively true.

Also empirically true!

Shakespeare is truth

If by this, you mean "I like Shakespeare's writing" (an empirical truth), just say so.

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