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Profile Kajunfisher
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Message 165755 - Posted: 10 Sep 2005, 19:26:02 UTC - in response to Message 165748.  

Maybe it's paranoia? I don't know.

Some people here are NEVER happy, no matter what you tell them.

I'm the same guy I was last week & the week before that. Chances are I'll be the same guy next week (with or without a star).

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Message 165767 - Posted: 10 Sep 2005, 19:43:29 UTC - in response to Message 165747.  
Last modified: 10 Sep 2005, 20:23:28 UTC

I found out half an hour after posting this that the SETI@home project doesn't receive any US tax dollars, so that part of the post is moot. It is left un-edited below for posterity :-)

You don't donate by "paying taxes", you pay your taxes.


While he was in office, President Clinton continuously refered to tax increases as "contributions."

Just pointing out that splitting hairs on terminology isn't going to change the reality. I pay various types of taxes becaue I live in the United States. Some of that money goes to maintaining airports that I will never vist, embassies that I will never use, border gates that I will never cross, etc. In theory, federal tax dollars are doled out according to their usefulness to the nation as a whole.

Of course, anyone who thinks that federal funding actually works that way is a naïve lunatic, but that's not my point. The point is that if NSF had not funded SETI@home, it would not turn into a tax break for US taxpayers. It would have gone to studying the coagulation rate of mustard, the economic impact of cleaning bird dropping from sidewalks, or the albedo of the Earth if it had been covered in various shades of orange paint.

SETI@home does need to be accountable for the tax dollars they spend. It might be nice if the funding reference number was on the home page, but I can assure you that UCB is complying with a dizzying array of requirements to get that money. The requirements for receiving "tax exempt" donations are different, but they are also designed to offer contributors at least some minimal comfort that the project is using the money for what the claim they are.

I don't have a green star next to my name yet because I'm not in the financial shape to donate monetarily yet. I will at some point in the future when my wife is working again, but when I do send some money it doesn't mean I'll suddenly be a better person than I was the day before, or even a better participant in the SETI@home community. That was why I proposed the idea of several different participant "paths to recognition." (If I missed any categories, let me know.) In that particular system, probably only the star would appear next to one's name and the other below the avatar and in the profile.

No animals were harmed in the making of the above post... much.
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Profile Matt Lebofsky
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Message 165795 - Posted: 10 Sep 2005, 20:13:22 UTC

Regarding US taxes and SETI@home:

This argument is completely moot since not a single cent of federal taxpayer money has gone into funding SETI@home. Back in 1993 the government cut off all funding to SETI related projects. It's only recently that they started considering accepting such grants again. BOINC has gotten NSF funding to do general distributed computing research. This is a completely separate project. I personally don't get any salary from BOINC grants, nor does it pay for tapes, SETI@home server maintenance/hardware, etc. That money only goes towards BOINC core client software development, and occasional tech support for all scientific endeavors using the BOINC engine.

- Matt
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-- "Any idiot can have a good idea. What is hard is to do it." - Jeanne-Claude
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Message 165802 - Posted: 10 Sep 2005, 20:21:02 UTC - in response to Message 165795.  

Regarding US taxes and SETI@home:

This argument is completely moot since not a single cent of federal taxpayer money has gone into funding SETI@home. Back in 1993 the government cut off all funding to SETI related projects. It's only recently that they started considering accepting such grants again. BOINC has gotten NSF funding to do general distributed computing research. This is a completely separate project. I personally don't get any salary from BOINC grants, nor does it pay for tapes, SETI@home server maintenance/hardware, etc. That money only goes towards BOINC core client software development, and occasional tech support for all scientific endeavors using the BOINC engine.

- Matt


That would explain why there is no NSF funding reference number. It also puts SETI@home in a slightly different category than the projects that have NSF numbers yet don't overtly solicit donations.

Of course, it's ironic that SETI federal funding was cut off the year that the taxes=contributions guy took office.
No animals were harmed in the making of the above post... much.
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Message 165807 - Posted: 10 Sep 2005, 20:30:06 UTC - in response to Message 165802.  

Of course, it's ironic that SETI federal funding was cut off the year that the taxes=contributions guy took office.


From what I understand, the blame is mostly on Senator Richard Bryan from Nevada, who felt that SETI was a pointless endeavor and a waste of taxpayer money. This is ridiculous of course, since SETI research costs nothing and inspires the public (SETI@home is a prime example of that). NASA/NSF, not wanting to ruffle any feathers, obliged and cut funding. It's been donations and corporate gifts ever since. With the dot-com era behind us, the gifts are few and far between.

- Matt
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-- "Any idiot can have a good idea. What is hard is to do it." - Jeanne-Claude
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Message 165810 - Posted: 10 Sep 2005, 20:33:34 UTC - in response to Message 165807.  
Last modified: 10 Sep 2005, 20:34:27 UTC

Thanks for explaining, Matt! This makes our donations even more necessary.

.oO(Do you ever take a day off?? It seems you are here always! :-O)


"I'm trying to maintain a shred of dignity in this world." - Me

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Message 165814 - Posted: 10 Sep 2005, 20:41:42 UTC

Matt,

I wasn't aware of that until now. If someone would have mentioned it earlier, well, you probably wouldn't be having alot of the problems you are having now.
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Message 165815 - Posted: 10 Sep 2005, 20:43:08 UTC - in response to Message 165807.  

From what I understand, the blame is mostly on Senator Richard Bryan from Nevada, who felt that SETI was a pointless endeavor and a waste of taxpayer money.


Well, I'll never vote for this guy! Since I don't live in Nevada and Mr. Bryan is not currently in office, I think this qualifies as an empty threat.
No animals were harmed in the making of the above post... much.
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Message 165835 - Posted: 10 Sep 2005, 21:12:02 UTC - in response to Message 165234.  
Last modified: 10 Sep 2005, 21:13:28 UTC

On a side note ... I worked out today that if this project was a paying customer on SunGrid the 'cost' (SunGrid charges $1 per CPU per Hour) of performing the crunching we've contributed so far would be (APPROX): (256 CPUs x (6 days x 24 hours)) + (64 CPUs x (4 days x 24 hours)) + (128 CPUs x (1 day x 12 hours)) = $44,526.
Of course anyone would be hard pressed to justify that as a 'financial contribution' ...

My wife would like to think that my contribution just to Classic is! So far I am at 42.535 years. You can see the Boinc stats on the left under my name. I too contribute my machines to Berkeley, I currently have 20 and most are strictly for the use of Berkeley.
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Message 165873 - Posted: 10 Sep 2005, 22:23:07 UTC

"Nobody is dismissing anybody.

People in this thread see other people with stars and assume they're going to turn into some elite aristocratic class who thinks they're better than those without stars. That's an unfounded idea, and those people are paranoid.

I don't have to defend to anyone my small donation or my star, and if you think I'm going to lord it over you then you need to go outside and get some sun."


Matt

You are already doing it

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Message 165890 - Posted: 10 Sep 2005, 22:57:43 UTC
Last modified: 10 Sep 2005, 22:58:16 UTC

I think this is a worthwhile and honorable project with a goal that (if achieved) would be the greatest discovery since the wheel as far as mankind is concerned. Even if the goal isn't achieved, SETI will stand as a truly multi-national and multi-culteral project which in itself is enough for me to want to be here - I want it to carry on, so I donated some money. That's all - no discussion for me about who's better than who will ever have any meaning.
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Message 165892 - Posted: 10 Sep 2005, 22:58:38 UTC - in response to Message 165873.  

"Nobody is dismissing anybody.

People in this thread see other people with stars and assume they're going to turn into some elite aristocratic class who thinks they're better than those without stars. That's an unfounded idea, and those people are paranoid.

I don't have to defend to anyone my small donation or my star, and if you think I'm going to lord it over you then you need to go outside and get some sun."


Matt

You are already doing it

I think some people need to be more explicit with their [sarcasm] [/sarcasm] tags.

MJ

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Message 165904 - Posted: 10 Sep 2005, 23:23:24 UTC
Last modified: 10 Sep 2005, 23:29:32 UTC

To me it seems that complaining about "green stars" is nearly the same as if you would complain about other users having more credit, thus having a higher rank at the stats page. For example if one user has 10 comps working, I can't blame him for the fact that I just own 2 boxes and therefore will have lower credit. Everything is freely chosen by any participant: you choose how many computers/cpu time, money or knowledge you are willing to spend, nothing more nothing less. So here's no need for pointing fingers or complaining at all: I don't think that's a contribution at all...

Grrrrrrrrreetings from the Lazy Cat...
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Message 165911 - Posted: 10 Sep 2005, 23:32:46 UTC

Pathetic. F*cking pathetic.

I can't donate a bit of money to Seti@home without some jealous whiners getting on my back.

I started out happy, thinking I was helping. Now, I still know I'm helping, but now I'm disgusted. I never thought I was better than people, but now I do. I'm better than the worthless children who can't stand to see someone else doing more than them.

If you don't care about my star, that's great. I'm with you.

If you DO care about my star, too bad. And just to piss you off: I am better than you. I have a tiny green star next to my name and I donated a bit of cash. I am a better person, I have a bigger house and more money. I have a high-paying, low work job, and a beautiful wife. I am 100x more important than you in Seti and everybody hates you. I got a letter from the Seti admins saying that I was the most important person in the project, and that if anyone finds an alien signal, I'm going to get the credit, because of my tiny green star.
-----
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Message 165918 - Posted: 10 Sep 2005, 23:41:27 UTC
Last modified: 10 Sep 2005, 23:43:15 UTC

I don't care about your star... I can get one for myself if I want to. And I don't think you'll have to defend yourself any longer ;-) BTW: A quote from Misfit's signature: "No good deed goes unpunished!"

Grrrrrrrrreetings from the Lazy Cat...
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Message 165922 - Posted: 10 Sep 2005, 23:46:39 UTC - in response to Message 165911.  
Last modified: 10 Sep 2005, 23:49:01 UTC

Pathetic. ...

Its all down to how people feel and where their pride might be or otherwise.

Myself, the green star issue is a non-issue and goes alongside the insignificance of all the various credit scorings angst.

I am amazed at how this thread has squirmed along!

Is this all misplaced egos or overly touchy paranoia?

At the moment there's no star alongside my userid. There might be one, there might not be, there might be one there that is invisible.

So who knows?

Be cool in all the right ways!

Cheers,
Martin
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Message 165990 - Posted: 11 Sep 2005, 1:23:05 UTC - in response to Message 165536.  


Ray, do YOU pay US taxes?


I sure do and have for a long time. Even gave time to the Country during the Vietnam war. But our paying taxes has nothing to do with a volunteer program. The Goverment stopped supporting SETI before it went public for us to crunch for it.



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Message 165991 - Posted: 11 Sep 2005, 1:23:20 UTC - in response to Message 165318.  

Regarding the star: We figured we didn't want a monetary symbol, but some kind of acknowledgement that was positive when people donated to our project. We also didn't want to rank people based on amount - some people can afford $100, some people can only afford $10 - they both deserve a star for helping out. Maybe the ranking will happen on a separate donor page that lists usernames in groups separated by orders of magnitude (0-9 dollars, 10-99 dollars, 100-999 dollars, etc.). That's still up for debate.


I am sure the addition of the star was a monetary symbol. A symbol to get more cash!

Good Luck...hope it works for you
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Message 165995 - Posted: 11 Sep 2005, 1:25:22 UTC - in response to Message 165497.  

I'm intolerant of crybaby-ism.

My Star is bigger than yours! My self serving Avatar!


I think the is the best post on here from anyone with a green star!
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Message 165997 - Posted: 11 Sep 2005, 1:25:51 UTC
Last modified: 11 Sep 2005, 1:26:34 UTC

Nah, thought better. Screw the star-complainers.
-----
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Message boards : Number crunching : Donation discussion


 
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