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Comment Re:Passed data with a ton of noise? (Score 1) 363 363

Yeah, if you're in an exceptionally noisy environment with a long cable run, it might make sense to buy a more expensive cable that features things like additional shielding, thicker gauge wires, etc...(or just go fiber).

Otherwise the ECC does it's job and there's no practical difference between the cheapest wire possible and the most expensive.

Hell, audiophiles can't tell when the testers are using coat hangers as speaker wires, and that's an actual analogue signal!

But the cases where a decently constructed commodity cable won't do but the 'premium' will are generally limited.

In many cases with 'premium' cables, you end up with cable and connectors so heavy that that causes the very problems than the cable was supposed to solve!

I'll admit, I've spent double the money on 'better than the cheapest I can get' cables on occasion, but that's usually because I had broken the cable through use/abuse that was there originally, so getting a 'tougher' cable made sense.

Comment Re:Convenient (Score 4, Informative) 110 110

It is interesting that when there is a limited broad commercial viability, the "drug" designers and chemists are able to whip up a cure for something in under a year.

Problem: They've been working on the Ebola vaccine for a lot longer than a year. What really happened is that they had a vaccine in the early testing stages, with something like an estimated 5 years of testing left before it could be commercially deployed. Then we have a relatively huge ebola outbreak, panic sets in and they grant a waiver for the testing. Basically, they had enough information that 'We think this will probably help you survive exposure to Ebola. We're pretty sure it won't hurt you'. So they administer the vaccine in a sort of accelerated study, because it might save lives. Turns out it probably did.

Outside of an Ebola outbreak, the risks weren't worth it. During one? Worth it.

It actually reminds me of the first vaccination methods - Variolation. Fascinating history. Various versions around, but had a top end of 1% chance of death. Yes, the vaccination itself killed 1% of those treated. But it was against smallpox - with a death rate of 30% during epidemics. As long as the chances of catching smallpox was above 4%, it was 'worth it' to variate. And in Europe, the chances were a lot higher than 4%. Even royalty variolated their children.

As for cancer - apples and oranges dude. The problem with cancer is that it's actually lots of different problems, all under the same name. Causes, effects, treatments, all different.

We've developed lots of cures for various cancers, just not all of them yet.

Comment Re:Passed data with a ton of noise? (Score 5, Informative) 363 363

Okay, digital data is supposed to be easy 1 and 0 communication. But when you get down to the physical media, said binary digits are represented by physical phenomenon. So +3.3V = 1, 0V = 0 type stuff.

Voltage, resistance, EM waves, magnetics, etc... You're actually back in the world of Analogue, and here you have to worry about noise.

When you're moving data as fast as you can, or storing it as densely as you can, interference becomes more likely. For example, you'd think that +3V =1 and 0V = 0 would be easy, but when you're flipping the signal as fast as you can, you end up with the cable possibly acting like a transformer or capacitor. So the voltage might run a bit higher, a bit lower, a bit faster, a bit slower, etc...

Radio transmissions, Solar noise, close by electrical cables, other data cables with parallel runs, etc... The world is 'noisy' even if you're using wires.

That's why you have error correction in digital communications. So the 'occasional' bit can become flipped and the system transparently recovers it, and you get your transmitted data, identical from the other side.

Comment Re:100% Success in trials... (Score 1) 110 110

Given the size of the trial, it's really unlikely that it prevents less than 90% of the cases of Ebola that would otherwise develop. So while I agree that 100% continuing is all that likely, especially if you start including immune suppressed people such as the HIV positive, those with cancer, transplants, young children, the elderly, etc... Still, if you vaccinate 100% of those eligible for it and it provides 95% immunity to Ebola, odds are the vulnerable won't be exposed at all, because you'll have something like 5% of the flare-ups from a wild source, and such flareups should mostly be individual, not thousands.

On the other hand, thinking about Ebola and vaccines reminded me that vaccines have made an even deadlier disease less problematic - Rabies. It wasn't until a relatively short time ago that we had any survivors from the symptomatic stage, and even then getting those requires putting them into a medical coma for a while.

But with the vaccine we realistically save thousands of human lives every year in the USA alone, and that's with mostly vaccinating animals, not people, and only vaccinating humans who we suspect have been exposed or work in a higher exposure risk area.

Comment Re:How long and how varied (Score 2) 110 110

Having a 100% proof vaccine for Ebola is nice, as long as it works for the majority of strains and also lasts for life.

Not necessarily. I'd say it remains 'nice' even if it only lasts for 6 months, so long as it works on 'most' strains, but said strains are identifiable.

The critical part here is that it works when given close to exposure. That makes it like the rabies vaccine. Ebola outbreak? You hit everybody in the village up with it, and it remains at 1-2 cases, not hundreds.

If it's 100% effective for life with 1 shot, it goes way beyond 'nice'. As such it would beat most vaccines today, as most vaccines are: Only about 90% effective, require multiple shots to reach that effectiveness, only last a limited period of time, etc...

Flu - annual(though that's for a wide number of varieties), Tetanus - 10 years, Hep A - 2 does, Hep B - 3 doses, Chickenpox - 2 doses, etc...

Comment Re:I hope he wins in court (Score 1) 1176 1176

Discharging a weapon in a populated area is unsafe in nearly every circumstance.

Except in this case he managed to check off a number of 'safe' boxes. The described fence would stop the ammunition of choice from the weapon, and the ammunition fired at a relatively high angle would come down safely as well.

That being said, I don't want regular gunfire just because of the noise.

I would have told the drone owners that they can take their broken drone or they can press charges for destruction of property in exchange for the homeowner pressing trespassing/peeping charges on them.

Comment Shooting down drones (Score 1) 1176 1176

This reminds me of the last drone I read about being taken out by gunfire. It was some PETA people using a quadracoptor to harass some hunters - it was really an obscenely loud whiny thing, and their goal was to scare game and such.

They complained to the cops that had shown up that their drone had been shot. The cops looked at them like 'so what'?

The PETA types tried 'but that was dangerous!' Keep in mind that, unlike this case, said hunters were in an area where firearm use was legal.

Comment Re:Not quite that trivial. (Score 1) 1176 1176

You don't think that, in a neighborhood, someone would know who has a drone like this?

Given that the drone operator was there to 'photograph a friend's house', I'm taking it as that he's not local. I could park a van a block or so away, launch the drone from the roof, and never be seen in person operating it.

Comment Re:Or... just hear me out here... (Score 1) 1176 1176

but I think a BB would.

And you're ignoring all the personal experiences posted in this thread by people who have actually been peppered by falling shot why? You even acknowledge that people 'felt it' but our sense of touch is sensitive - I can feel a sheet of paper falling onto me, it's going to take quite a bit more force to actually hurt me.

Now, it's certainly not identical, but I'm reminded of the Mythbuster's 'penny off the Empire State Building' where they determined that a falling penny from that height(assuming it didn't get blown back onto the building like most do), would only sting a bit when it hits.

And a penny is less aerodynamic but much more massive than a birdshot BB. A number of the finer grades look almost like sand.

And a source on the differences between rifle rounds and birdshot.
AK round: 124 grains, TV 265 fps, 23 ft-lbs of force
5.56 round: 62 grains, 245fps, 8 ft-lbs
9mm: 115 gr, 195 fps, 10 ftlbs
00 buck: 54 grains, 130fps, 2 ft-lbs (it's TV is much lower than the rifle round because a sphere is less aerodynamic than the cone of a bullet)
#8 birdshot: 1.3gr, 76 fps, 1 ft-lb (Too low for writer's ballistic calculator).

Comment Re:Right to Privacy in One's Backyard? (Score 3, Insightful) 1176 1176

That's with the more aerodynamic spin stabilized projectiles fired from rifled barrels(even handguns today are rifled). Unless he was stupid enough to shoot the drone with a slug or buckshot, the projectiles reach terminal velocity very rapidly compared to a rifle and *fall* at a velocity that will limit damage.

If he fired it at an angle much above 30 degrees the pellets are only dangerous on the upward part of the parabola.

Even buckshot is only dangerous a bit further, and slugs have the longest range but are still relatively short-ranged compared to a rifle round.

Comment Re:Video ad duplication and isp quotas (Score 1) 380 380

So i get adverts in this use case, most of the adverts where repeated, and one was an infomercial for a water heater which ran to twenty minutes was relatively local to my location and it played about fifteen times in the hour of the flash thing.

You should have seen the ad campaign last election season. I live in a state of less than a million people, that's nominally 'conservative', but had a democratic senator. That campaign was intense.

How intense? Think about the hassle of $200 worth of political advertising between the two of them, per registered voter.

Because of the auction system and the amount/value of those political ads, if the saw that your IP was from our state, you saw nothing else. And many of them were full video ads.

Comment Re:Or let us keep our hard-earned money (Score 1) 571 571

My fear is that the time and energy to determine the external cost in dollars would be either impossible or too costly to ever actually do.

Now, this might sound 'mean', but we already do it. We have professionals at it. Actuaries. They have tables and you plug the numbers in and it spits out an estimate.

Please note that I said 'approximately'. It's impossible to determine 'exactly' how much damage coal plant X does, partially because it's dependent upon population density, the amount of power it produces, the dominant winds, rain patterns, etc...

What we can do is figure out a pretty close estimate on how much damage ALL the coal plants cause via the various pollutants, then look at Plant X, determine what it's producing via sampling, then charge for it.

If it lacks a certain control against mercury emission, for example, it's costs per kWh are going to be substantially increased because it has to pay for it.

Comment Re:Now I won't feel guilty about using Adblock (Score 3, Interesting) 380 380

I tend to blame slow ad servers more. With as many ad servers, tracking sites, and other crap revenue-generation webpages want to load on my computer, the odds that one of them is offline, slow, or frozen is fairly high. So I end up waiting for it to time out - until I block it and my computer doesn't even try.

Hell, one site I hit had FOUR auto-play videos on it - 2 of them the same ad that played at slightly different times, indicating that it wasn't even nice enough to pull it from the same location. Then it had the video about the article, AND a general news site feed.

The site was so horribly unusable that I could only conclude that the designers didn't view it without ad-blockers themselves.

Comment Re:Now I won't feel guilty about using Adblock (Score 1) 380 380

Sequential loading, but also consider that many will delay the page showing until the ad is served or times out.

If the website is hitting 20 different ad servers & trackers, what are the odds that at least ONE of them is in a less than ideal routing location for your computer, not available, slow, or delayed?

I mean, blocking all the google, facebook, twitter, and such tracking & 'share this!' code sped up webpages quite well.

Why the hell would I want to share random posts on an internet forum, such as this, on facebook or whatever?

Comment Re:Page loading has always been far slower with ad (Score 2) 380 380

Normally they're looking at 'fantasy'. They're paying more than they want for the number of responses they get.

Like I was trying to point out earlier, paper, magazine, television, and radio ad responses are harder to measure than computer ad 'click-through'. Some of the examinations I've seen has the experts pointing out that there is reason to believe that the 'estimated' response for traditional media advertising has been vastly over-estimated.

Basically, they were backtracking to try to figure out why computer ads were doing so 'poorly' compared to existing media using various metrics, when they realized that computer ads aren't less effective according to traditional metrics, but are lousy by the enhanced metrics. Then they started looking into traditional advertising, and started finding the same things - advertising not as effective as believed.

This probably is part of what led to the even more advertising, but that has the problem that it's actively driving viewers away from traditional media.

The reason why worry kills more people than work is that more people worry than work.