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October 8th, 2001

doing 80 in the exit lane

That's not actually a song lyric that I know of, but it should be.

My computer died yesterday :(. Hard drive failed. Meerkat spent the whole day hooking up an old hard drive and reinstalling windows on it so we could try to rescue my D2 characters, only to have the network card refuse to work. And it's kinda hard to patch the system to get everything working with no network.

We'd been planning on getting me a new system in 6-8 weeks anyway - but that date was because that's when the new integrated motherboards come out. If we do it now, we have to spend an extra couple hundred dollars, and I lose the 1337 k3w1n355 (tm) of having a nifty integrated motherboard.

How will I stand to be D2-less for 6 weeks??? My druid was just about to kill Duriel! *whimper*

But, good stuff:
- Meerkat has another customer!!
- It's pretty outside but cold, so I can look out the window and be glad I can see the sun without being out in it
- I can feel my brain starting to quiet down, should be able to do work soon

science and prayer; statistics rant

Effect of Double-Blinded Prayer on In Vitro Fertilization

Fascinating. I've seen other studies that indicate similar things. On the one hand, I think it's wonderful that the possibility of paranormal abilities is starting to be investigated scientifically; on the other hand, I'm afraid that since all of these studies have involved prayer, that they will end up being construed to be proof of a Christian god, rather than the power of mind. Of course, in most cases prayer is probably more powerful since it has blind faith behind it. I'd like to see a study set up the same way as this one, but instead of people praying they are focusing/meditating on good outcomes for the patients. Or they're all praying to Bast, or Freyja.

This also lends credence to the time my parents and I came under psychic attack because some Christian friends of theirs had just found out they were Wiccan, and were praying for us to 'find the light'. Gah.

-------------------------------------------------

The article did annoy me, however, because it failed to mention a standard deviation - it just gave the success rates for the two groups, and how many people were in each. Without a standard deviation, that information is *meaningless*. Granted, it was published in a reputable journal, so I'm sure the difference was statistically significant - but I'd rather have numbers to go on. Of course, most people don't even know what a standard deviation is, which is why it gets left out most of the time. Sigh.

Y'know, I hated hated HATED stats classes in school. But now I am so amazingly glad I learned that stuff. I can actually tell the difference between a half-assed ask-your-friends-a-couple-of-biased-questions poll and a legitimate study.

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