Hacker Newsnew | comments | ask | jobs | submit | ocharles's commentslogin
ocharles 46 days ago | link | parent | on: How to meditate

Care to back that up?

-----

royprins 46 days ago | link

I think the request for proof lies with something that claims to have a certain effect or benefit.

On the other hand, it has been proven that taking breaks can enhance concentration and endurance. Meditation should be no exception.

-----


Have you heard of Ur? It takes this idea even further - http://www.impredicative.com/ur/

-----


If you only have `2 * n cores` connections, doesn't that mean that you can at most have `2 * n cores` transactions running at once? I suppose on larger servers that is fairly reasonable (as you want these transactions to be very short lived anyway), but it does seem like you don't give yourself much wiggle room.

-----


I agree. It was my first FOSDEM, but I was a little frustrated that I caught maybe 20% of the talks I actually wanted to see. I didn't even get into the PostgreSQL room, despite turning up 15 minutes early for one of the talks.

That said, just complaining about a free conference on Hacker News won't help. I'd like to do my part and help by donating, but only accepting wire transfers is a lot more friction that it should be :(

-----

justincormack 71 days ago | link

They take cash there in person I think.

-----


I spent some time writing Asteroids in netwire - a functional reactive programming library in Haskell - in my free time over a few evenings. I blogged about this at http://ocharles.org.uk/blog/posts/2013-08-18-asteroids-in-ne... - and I don't think it pretends to be OO. It was a radically different style, and I left feeling fairly convinced that FRP is a fantastic model for realtime interactions

-----

seanmcdirmid 128 days ago | link

FRP is great until you need to be interactive or switch over collections, then it becomes quite ugly. It can work for small games, like the ones in Courtney's dissertation. But over that? Not until a complete physics engine can be joined with a FRP library.

-----

davexunit 128 days ago | link

FRP can exist happily alongside imperative methods of updating state. This approach is explored in FrTime for Racket. http://cs.brown.edu/~sk/Publications/Papers/Published/ck-frt...

-----

seanmcdirmid 127 days ago | link

FrTime is not really pure FRP as envisioned by Elliot or Hudak. But then I prefer these impure FRP systems and have designed/implemented one myself called SuperGlue [1] as part of my dissertation.

[1] http://research.microsoft.com/apps/pubs/default.aspx?id=1793...

-----

davexunit 127 days ago | link

I guess I prefer the impure systems then, too. :)

-----

MartinCron 128 days ago | link

Thank you for sharing. I really enjoyed your netwire Asteroids post. I used Asteroids for teaching myself OO concepts many years ago. It's good to know that it's still a valuable teaching tool.

-----

ocharles 129 days ago | link | parent | on: GNU Guix 0.5 released

I have been using NixOS as my primary OS for the best part of half a year now (maybe more). I haven't looked back since :) I do warn people though - it's not as featureful as other distributions, so you have to be willing to help out. I'm approaching my 100th commit on the project, I believe.

-----


> In its most extreme realizations has been shown to cause severe emotional harm to exploited workers.

Care to share these findings?

-----

LukeWalsh 131 days ago | link

The simplest (and arguably most egregious) example is the sex industry's use of children. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commercial_sexual_exploitation_...

-----

lambda 131 days ago | link

You say this as if the sex industry is a single organization which does both the cam shows of legal adults and exploitation of children.

Would you say that the internet industry is inherently harmful because much of this exploitation of children takes place over the internet? Would you say that the software industry is inherently harmful because some people write malware?

You said that "I think the industry is fundamentally different and in its most extreme realizations has been shown to cause severe emotional harm to exploited workers" but I'm not sure how the most extreme realizations of abuse in a particular industry speak to the industry as a whole, unless those are somehow condoned by the majority of the industry or vastly more widespread in a particular industry.

There's a lot of the adult entertainment industry that works scrupulously within the law, and provides income for a lot of models. For some reason, a lot of people have a notion that they are being harmed merely because they are involved in sex work, no matter that they are consenting adults and are choosing this work over any of a number of other jobs that they could have.

So do you believe that working in the sex industry is inherently harmful in some way? Or do you believe that the industry exploits its workers more than is common in other industries? Or that acceptance of harmful behavior is more widespread in the sex industry? And do you have evidence to back this up?

And note, of course, that I'm talking about the legal sex industry; like in the case of any prohibition, such as alcohol prohibition back in the day or drug prohibition today, illegal industries tend to attract more crime, because you're already a criminal merely by participating in the industry. Do you have evidence that shows that the legal sex industry is particularly harmful or more conducive towards tempting people to abusive or illegal behaviors than any other similar industry?

-----

girvo 131 days ago | link

The way I see it, is that sex work has a higher chance of involving harm, but it's not a guarantee. It's inherently risky (contact sex work, I mean) due to STI's and various other reasons; and often those who participate in it as a worker do so for reasons that we should be tackling (be it abuse while young, a lack of other career options, &c) as a society. If the people involved are not suffering or being exploited, then more power to them! In my research though, often those at most risk of harm in society end up there, and that's a bad thing, in my opinion.

I live in a country where prostitution is completely legal, and while that doesn't entirely remove all problems, it's certainly helped. Being in a western first world country also helps. it's not a simple topic, and your point is well made; we should think before we rush to judgements and conclusions, especially those based on "Puritan" morals and societies shunning of the industry as a whole.

-----

LukeWalsh 131 days ago | link

I don't think of it as a single organization, or as an industry that is inherently harmful. There are many adult entertainers who enjoy their work. I do however think that it's something to watch carefully in developing countries in the same way that we consider safe working conditions. I think that perhaps the quantity of exploited workers in the sex industry is not higher, but the depth of exploitation possible can be much greater than that in many other industries.

-----

MichaelGG 131 days ago | link

But that's not really related to cam studios where people voluntarily decide to perform.

-----

tga_d 131 days ago | link

For varying definitions of "voluntary." I find it difficult to believe that the majority of these workers would choose of their own volition to work in this industry if they had the option of equally well paying source of income. Just because something is economic coercion doesn't mean it's not coercion. Just like "consenting" sexual relationships with prepubescent minors aren't actually consenting, since the minor hasn't developed the capacity of sexual consent, neither is the "voluntary" working of sex workers voluntary when it is one of the limited means of getting a living wage.

-----

MichaelGG 131 days ago | link

It's not even similar to the sexual exploitation of prepubescent minors -- people have problems with minors working in sweatshops, after all.

The rest of your argument applies to just about well-paying job in a poor country. I know software developers making an order of magnitude more than they would at any other job. Some of them don't enjoy dealing with software. It's still a voluntary decision.

If I say I would not want to work in telecom because I get paid more for my efforts in that field than others, is that somehow now involuntary?

-----

jessaustin 131 days ago | link

It's possible to acknowledge that many sex workers have challenging situations without denying them agency entirely. If they aren't "prepubescent minors", then they aren't "just like" such minors.

In pointing this out, I'm not just playing a philosophical game. Those who wish to assist sex workers, whether in leaving sex work entirely or just being safer or happier in sex work, ought to be practical enough to realize that many sex workers choose sex work over other means of support.

-----

DanBC 131 days ago | link

Some people like sex, and they like getting paid for sex work.

That's not true for most people involved in sex work. It's not a free choice they've made. They find themselves in that situation to pay for drugs, or alcohol, or to pay off debts, or because they're modern slaves.

Camming is the lighter end of sex work, and thus the ratio of willing : unwilling workers is better than for other sex work, but it's still more likely to be harmful than harm free.

-----

dragonwriter 131 days ago | link

> Some people like sex, and they like getting paid for sex work.

> That's not true for most people involved in sex work.

You know, if you dropped "sex" for most other domains wherein people might work, that'd probably still be true. There's probably a few areas of work where most people work in the domain because they like it, but for most domains of work people work in the domain because they need the money and working in the domain is the best way they feel they have of making the money they need.

Socially taboo -- and, even moreso, illegal -- domains of work, naturally, increase the risk of people being stuck in them and being less able to move to other domains of work later, and they also increase the risk of exploitation (because people feel trapped in them, because subject to abuse have less ability to address abuse, and because the social taboo (or illegality) of working in the domain naturally means that people, even if they like the domain, are less likely to choose it as a domain of work if they have other viable options, meaning the people that do end up there are usually the most vulnerable to exploitation in the first place.

-----

jpatokal 131 days ago | link

Not liking your job != exploitation. There are plenty of people out there working shit jobs to pay off debts or a support a family, even though if they have a choice they'd be drinking daiquiris on Aruba, but that does not make them "modern slaves".

-----

btilly 131 days ago | link

I read the phrase "modern slaves" as an accurate description for a sadly large number of sex workers worldwide.

See http://blogs.timesofisrael.com/hookers-in-the-holy-land-an-u... for an example of something that qualifies for that description.

-----

DanBC 131 days ago | link

There's a difference between being coerced to have sex with someone that you don't want to have sex with and doing photocopying.

-----

Dylan16807 131 days ago | link

You can make just as much of an inequality in the other direction. There's a difference between chatting with someone you don't know in a skimpy outfit and doing repetitive manual labor in the heat and sun for 12 hours a day.

Outside of human trafficking (which I acknowledge as an important problem) it's pretty hard to get coerced into prostitution.

-----

btilly 131 days ago | link

Outside of human trafficking (which I acknowledge as an important problem) it's pretty hard to get coerced into prostitution.

No, not hard at all.

I had a friend from high school who met a guy at a party. He gave her drugs. Before long, she was addicted. She couldn't afford the habit. He let her get into full withdrawal, then offered her drugs if she'd have sex with his friends. She did. A week later, she had dropped out of law school and was working a street corner.

My understanding is that this is a fairly common path into prostitution.

-----

dragonwriter 131 days ago | link

> Outside of human trafficking (which I acknowledge as an important problem) it's pretty hard to get coerced into prostitution.

While I agree with what you seem to be arguing in your post, this particular sentence is true in the same sense as "outside of triangles, its pretty hard to have a three-sided polygon."

-----

Dylan16807 131 days ago | link

I had a hard time trying to find numbers, but this blog post seems to have reasonable sources. http://www.lauraleighparker.com/2012/06/human-trafficking-pr...

4.5 million victims of trafficking for purposes of sex, 40 million prostitutes total.

I certainly won't argue with the idea that some of them are forced into it by circumstance, but no matter how you slice it you end up with a lot of voluntary sex workers.

-----

DanBC 131 days ago | link

Your post started by excluding trafficked workers!

You can't come back comparing trafficked workers to non-trafficked workers and say that the rest are voluntary.

There are criminal gangs that specialise in coercing girls into providing sexual services, and who take money from punters for those services. See recent UK cases about child grooming gangs.

Your link in incoherent. One example:

> It is true that as I type this, there are young girls and women {and some boys} who are physically locked behind closed doors, who are threatened with their family’s safety, and who are paying off debts by servicing men in brothels. Estimates are, in fact, that there are about 4.5 million women and children forced, by coercion or abuse, into the sex industry today.

That's coercion, not trafficking. I have no idea what definition they're using for coercion, or trafficking, or even prostitution. (Can a 14 year old be a prostitute, or is that always rape of a child?)

Here's a better article about modern day slavery: http://www.irinnews.org/report/98964/anatomy-of-modern-day-s...

And about helping people who used to be indentured workers. This article also has links to better quality information about human trafficking, about child trafficking, etc: http://www.irinnews.org/report/98867/new-lease-on-life-for-e...

-----

Dylan16807 131 days ago | link

>Your post started by excluding trafficked workers!

Yes, to focus on people with choices, because it's obvious that trafficked workers are bad in any type of work.

>You can't come back comparing trafficked workers to non-trafficked workers and say that the rest are voluntary.

I can and do claim that a large amount of non-trafficked workers are voluntary. Sure, not 100%, but I never argued 100%.

>There are criminal gangs that specialise in coercing girls into providing sexual services, and who take money from punters for those services. See recent UK cases about child grooming gangs.

That's certainly a bad thing, but it's unrelated to a discussion of typical work, which involves consent-capable adults.

>That's coercion, not trafficking.

Well great, if that's accurate then it makes my point even better: <4.5M trafficked, <4.5M coerced, 35M voluntary.

> I have no idea what definition they're using for coercion, or trafficking, or even prostitution.

Well I didn't link the blog for its own text, but for having the sources in a convenient form. It cites 21 million trafficked, your link says 30 million slaves, either number works fine.

>Can a 14 year old be a prostitute, or is that always rape of a child?

I would say that it can be both, but the answer doesn't matter when you're comparing 5 million to 40 million.

>Here's a better article

These articles are informative but I'm afraid I don't see the connection to my argument, which is that there are a large number of non-slave non-coerced sex workers, whether they particularly like their job or not.

-----

enjo 131 days ago | link

That's not true for most people involved in sex work

Citation? I'm taking particular umbrage with "most".

-----

girvo 131 days ago | link

I worked as a software engineer to pay for my heroin addiction (am now clean), and allowed myself to be exploited at some pretty terrible places.

I don't really have a point with that post, I just never drew the parallel before. I was very lucky I had skills that are wanted and pay well.

-----

bdamm 131 days ago | link

Or is it the other way around... the harmed (abused, psychologically dysfunctional) who find themselves unable to operate within normal societal bounds, start to "get creative" about their work options?

No wonder, then, that such folks find themselves hurt by the work or perhaps drawn deeper into the vortex to earn a better income; they were already unable to pursue more typical paths.

-----


Not just is that function pure, but free theorems indicate that the only way you can get an a is by using the Vector that goes in. Sure, it could ignore the Int - we don't have linear types, afterall - but it really does narrow down the "what could this do?" options.

-----

gnuvince 134 days ago | link

For those interested, ocharles is talking about Theorems for Free![1] by Phil Wadler. Also be sure to check out his 24 Days of Hackage 2013.

[1] http://ttic.uchicago.edu/~dreyer/course/papers/wadler.pdf [2] http://ocharles.org.uk/blog/pages/2013-12-01-24-days-of-hack...

-----


> [..] and the person hypothetically has a heart condition.

That alone is a massive problem - how do you know? Most people only discover things like this when things start going wrong. And if you make things go wrong, then you risk doing even more damage. I've never had any of the tests done professionally, but I imagine there is a certain amount of assessment that takes place before the tests are even conducted.

-----


Then take that to its logical conclusion and read the source code for all the stuff you are installing, and the description of all the packages you are installing. Your argument was the strawman.

-----

More

Lists | RSS | Bookmarklet | Guidelines | FAQ | DMCA | News News | Feature Requests | Bugs | Y Combinator | Apply | Library

Search: