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Mathematics (and certain sciences) are one of the few fields where actual facts exist.

Most news, though, deals with with humans, humans' interactions, and so on. You can never know what other people are thinking or feeling when they do something, and oftentimes they themselves don't even know.

If you want to see how bad most reporting is, just see how bad it is in fields you understand. Most reporting about the computer industry is terrible. Just as one funny example of a "fact" by an expert (and ironic who I'm writing this to), pg's article on PR has a footnote about how the damages figure for the Morris worm was calculated.

Great read in any case, which sorta makes some of the same points: http://www.paulgraham.com/submarine.html.




pg's article on

I think it's awesome that usernames are so de-emphasized in HN that one can respond directly to a comment by the site's creator without realizing it (or perhaps you did realize, but deliberately chose to use the third person[1]). Though HN obviously has reputation built in with karma and well-known members with well-deserved notoriety, it's very easy to ignore names and evaluate posts solely on their merits. I believe this can be a useful tool when implementing the suggestion of others to consider aggregated information from multiple sources.

[1] Will grammarians one day create formal rules for forum posts?




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