The FREAK-est Links

The gender-swapping trend in online gaming.

New software fights fraud on gambling sites. (Earlier)

Atlanta man builds robot to chase away drug dealers. (Earlier)

Doctors don’t get enough sleep for optimal functioning.

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  1. Andrew says:

    That poker software is close to pointless: If you are committing fraud, you aren’t going to hang around for an hour doing it. It’s even more pointless because your bet frequency and other tendancies change depending on opponents, games, how well you’re playing and so forth. If you make a change to your play (I play for a living, and I make changes every day), will this software lock you out/freeze your account?

    On a related note, the objection noted in that article is also stupid: It’s perfectly possible to play unexploitably in a predictable fashion. For example, there is an optimum percentage of the time I should be bluff-raising the river in a certain spot.

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  2. Antigone says:

    For an alternative view on the issue of gender-swapping trend in online gaming, you might want to read Richard Bartle’s take on it: Bartle (who knows a thing or two about online gaming, having been involved in it for 30 years or so) argues that the “reasons people give [for playing a character of a different gender] are actually just cover to mask the real reasons they do it. The real reasons people play cross gender is basically because they can.”

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  3. Justin says:

    I am make and played several female characters in the online game City of Heroes. Did I play to mess with peoples heads? No. To get in game favors? No. I made a female character because if I’m going to be looking at the same characters back for tens and hundreds of hours, it should at least be a cute backside. I often do the same with single player games.

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  4. frankenduf says:

    how can I tell if a troll is male or female?

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  5. Mitch Berger says:


    Verbal ticks really rock my boat. Have you noticed the proliferation of the prefix “so” before many responses to question posed by the media wags. My latest sighting occurred tonight while watching a PBS interview of an esteemed doctor regarding mammogram screening. This interviewee responded to at least a dozen questions with the prefix “so”……….
    Really this is driving me nuts but maybe its me cause when I listened to your ‘Nobell’ podcast today the esteemed economist from Chicago U used the same finger screeching on the blackboard canned prefix when responding do Dubner’s questions.
    The real issue here is where do these type of verbal ticks emanate from and how do they grow to proliferate especially in the media.
    “SO” what do you guys think?
    Thank you “SO” much…….

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