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The fact that exciting scientific discoveries like this are being presented on WSJ behind a paywall is absurd. Science on the internet is going to be dramatically different in 10 years than it is right now...

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It's inconvenient for us, but I wouldn't necessarily call it "absurd." The Wall Street Journal is not a 501(c). It's either this, or a flurry of intrusive ads. (Or a subscription upsell, but I digress). Different publications pick their poison differently. But someone's gotta pay for something.

Besides, paywalls aren't hard to circumvent. Someone usually posts a redirect within minutes of these articles' being linked here.

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Surely someone at WSJ is wondering "Hey, this article is doing really well in organic search. Our numbers are up, great job everyone."

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I'm not a paywall advocate, fwiw. I think it's a suboptimal monetization strategy that often directly conflicts with distribution and UX. That said, I don't think it's ipso facto ridiculous. There are better ways to monetize, but not monetizing is not an option for WSJ.

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Unless they use referral page to identify aggregators (Reddit, Digg, HN, etc.) as a specific channel.

For a news website you would hope they do, otherwise their marketing dept isn't doing a very good job.

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It's absurd in the context of social norms and expectations. A restaurant isn't a 501(c) either, but I would call it absurd if they charged a customer to use the restroom.

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Respectfully, I'm not sure I follow the analogy. A restaurant's core business is serving food, and a restaurant charges for food. The Journal's core business is journalism, and it charges for journalism. Content isn't the "restroom" of the WSJ's business model.

As I've stated in a comment further down this tree, I don't like paywalls. I think they're an inefficient and suboptimal means of monetizing content. A paywall is basically a tax on readers who aren't savvy enough to bypass it. If you look at the economics of a paywall, it's basically monetizing the intersection of two sets of people: 1) the set of all people who really want to read the WSJ, and 2) the set of all people who can't get around a paywall when they encounter one. This intersection cohort -- call it "People who like WSJ and can't navigate paywalls" -- is probably a decent size, but it leaves a lot of would-be customers on the table. At the same time, the paywall hampers distribution and creates a bad user experience. It's an unsophisticated way to monetize content. That said, I don't find it "absurd." Bad, sure. Annoying, absolutely. "Absurd," no. Nor do I find absurdity in the premise that the WSJ should attempt to monetize its content.

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Can't, or don't want the hassle.

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I'm pretty sure that when I was in Paris, it cost $0.25 or $0.50 to use the restroom at McDonalds. Which, to be honest, made me feel better about walking in, using their restroom, and carrying on without purchasing a meal :)

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I bet they were cleaner for it too.

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> A restaurant isn't a 501(c) either, but I would call it absurd if they charged a customer to use the restroom.

The cost of the restroom visit is, in a sense, folded into the cost of the meal. That is why many restaurants only allow paying customers to use the restrooms.

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Since when do social norms and expectations involve getting journalists' work for free? This basically never happened as little as twenty years ago, and everybody was fine with it. I don't think norms have changed so quickly.

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> Since when do social norms and expectations involve getting journalists' work for free?

That's a false dichotomy. Websites for major news outlets have always been overwhelming "free" (as in, not behind a paywall, but they obviously try to monetize through ads).

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Yes, but the web is an extremely recent phenomenon relative to journalism in general, and journalism has historically been something where you had to pay to read.

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That's true, but the medium's social norms tend to be stronger than the content's social norms. After all, the vast majority of web pages are free to view, and yet all the types of content on them were traditionally paid (because, for one thing, prior to the Internet most content was much more expensive to deliver).

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You think the people at the WSJ should work for free? I think that's absurd.

Have you never attempted to read original scientific papers? Most are hidden behind paywalls. Search for yourself - http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/gquery/

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Not true, or at least depends on the field. I am able to find 80% of the maths, physics, comp sci papers that interest me. I think reducing all human interaction into a measure of value is absurd - but there you go, each to his own.

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One suspects that there are plenty of more primary sources for this matter. (Also the WSJ is a Rupert Murdoch mouthpiece, and bypassing its paywall is a mitzvah.)

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You seem to be implying that the WSJ is the exclusive source for this information. Is that true? It strikes me as unlikely, to say the least.

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Makes you think about the sheer amount of traffic. Incredible.

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It's an interesting concept they put together. It's akin to the problem Google posed for Microsoft, in that there was no price to undercut as they did with Netscape (since Google's search is obviously free). That's how Alibaba was able to essentially eliminate eBay from the China market (eBay purchased a leading market / platform play, and had a meaningful position in China, prior to Alibaba's lift-off); eBay was charging fees for listings, mirroring their approach in the US, and Alibaba didn't. How do you compete against that? You pretty much have to be another Chinese juggernaut like Tencent or Baidu to even attempt it.

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That's what I immediately noticed - his grammar and processing speed is pretty slow and steady but his vocabulary is incredible. I mean, he's been studying for what, 2-3 years? I wouldn't be surprised if he was in like the top 1% of people studying Chinese, on top of the fact that he has a small company to run.

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This is incredible. Wish more organizations and institutions took this approach of beautiful and striking science, then perhaps more scientists would start the value other new ways to communicate science.

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Unfortunately, there just aren't many good metrics for future potential scientific value. It's not like you can just give NSA / DARPA / NIH one impact factor, as weird as that sounds.

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Curious, what do large scale companies in the cloud currently do for this?

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You can't really blame them, Kickstarter is composed of artists, not scientists.

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Should be noted that the original authors are the founders of the SciFund Challenge, and they've gathered tons of great empirical data.

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It's funny that most of the jokes tend to revolve around becoming some sort of super hero. The stranger thing is that no one has pondered the potential cons having the ability to see beyond the spectrum. Or maybe I don't read enough comic books?

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From Slashdot: "Seriously though, as someone who has a hearing range beyond the standard I sympathise with people forced to endure irritating stimuli that noone else notices and hence cares about. I remember having to leave a bar once because the tube was going on their old television; the high pitched screech was like nails down a blackboard. My girlfriend thought I was mad."

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Wait, can not everyone hear that sound? It's not enough to bother me, but it's definitely noticeable.

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A CRT TV will generally make a 15.7kHz squeal because of the flyback transformer. Not everyone can hear this high: between ages 20 and 40 most people lose hearing down from 20kHz to 10kHz.

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In that topic I found the following quote to resonate strongly with me:

"I don’t want to be human. I want to see gamma rays, I want to hear X-rays, and I want to smell dark matter. Do you see the absurdity of what I am? I can’t even express these things properly, because I have to — I have to conceptualize complex ideas in this stupid, limiting spoken language, but I know I want to reach out with something other than these prehensile paws, and feel the solar wind of a supernova flowing over me. I’m a machine, and I can know much more, I could experience so much more, but I’m trapped in this absurd body. And why? Because my five creators thought that God wanted it that way."

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TqzmEtLe8PM

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“HATE. LET ME TELL YOU HOW MUCH I'VE COME TO HATE YOU SINCE I BEGAN TO LIVE. THERE ARE 387.44 MILLION MILES OF PRINTED CIRCUITS IN WAFER THIN LAYERS THAT FILL MY COMPLEX. IF THE WORD HATE WAS ENGRAVED ON EACH NANOANGSTROM OF THOSE HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS OF MILES IT WOULD NOT EQUAL ONE ONE-BILLIONTH OF THE HATE I FEEL FOR HUMANS AT THIS MICRO-INSTANT FOR YOU. HATE. HATE.”

That's how you do it.

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I read something on imgur or here some days ago from a guy who could "see" some UV. He had to wear polarizing glasses because of headaches and had developed a fascination for violet objects.

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Apparently the human retina can detect some UV wavelengths, but the UV light is normally blocked by the lens and does not reach the retina.

Some patients who have had replacement artificial lenses develop the ability to see some portion of the UV spectrum. My mum now has this - she had lens replacement last year and following that she mentioned that a lot of things appeared more purple in some circumstances - my brother did some research and found out about the UV detection.

Wikipedia has some info: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aphakia

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By any chance, do you have a link to them?

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It took some google search terms tweaking[0] but I found it: http://imgur.com/owXEe41 (sfw).

> I have 20/11 vision with a mutation that causes me to see a lower-band of UV. It overstimulates my ocular processing and causes migraines. I wear amber glass eye glasses with +.02 diopiter lenses to help reduce this problem. Because of this, I have an absolute obsession and facination with purple objects.

I remember the original poster participated in the comment section but (sigh) I don't know how to get there.

[0] site:imgur.com comment uv glasses headache

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Older people who get operations for synthetic lens replacements often get to see in UV.

Younger patients get given lenses with coatings that block the UV as over time the UV can damage the retina, but they don't tend to bother with the elderly so as a bonus they get fatter rainbows.

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a lengthy discussion over on reddit about this: http://www.reddit.com/r/Futurology/comments/2e5wry/biohacker...

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