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Comment: Re:Obligatory xkcd (Score 2) 41

by steveha (#49382507) Attached to: Thousand-Year-Old Eye Salve Kills MRSA


The point of that xkcd comic is that cancer drugs need to be safe as well as effective. A patient whose cancer cells are all dead is not better off if he is dead also.

I read the recipe for the salve and it does not appear to be something that would kill a patient. In fact, you could eat the medicine and it wouldn't hurt you; it's onions or leeks, garlic, wine, bile salts, and some small amount of copper. According to TFA the lab where they tested this smelled like garlic and people thought they were cooking food in the lab.

I'd be willing to have this stuff put on my skin.

P.S. I'm excited by the new technology being called "nanobots". (I think "nanobots" might be overselling what it is, but they didn't ask me.) A nanoscale cylinder is made that can hinge open; some drug is placed inside; and two latches hold it shut. The latches are designed to open only in the presence of a specific protein, such as a specific cancer cell type. Thus we have a nanoscale "robot" that can do exactly two things: it can open when it bumps into a specific cell type, and it can close again when it's away from the specific cell type.

This is exciting because it decouples the two problems of treating cancer: you need to kill the cancer cells and not hurt the patient. With this, you could use a very effective anti-cancer medicine that is as dangerous as a handgun bullet, but make sure that only a nanodose is delivered, and only to the cancer cells (I guess with high but not perfect accuracy).

I tried to find out more about the human trial, but couldn't find anything beyond the video linked in the above article. If these nanobots really do get tested on a human and he really has his life saved by them, I expect significant news coverage. The claim is that the guy would be dead by summer with conventional treatment, so if it's real we won't have to wait more than a few months to read more about it.

Comment: Re: Tim Cook is a Pro Discrimination Faggot (Score 1) 1055

I am. I believe in annullment of non fruitful unions. Fuck who you like, cohabitate as you like, but make marriage about nurturing families has ALWAYS been my position. I came to this position when my tasks as a life insurance agent/financial planner led me to help rich DINKs pay less taxes using marriage laws, and felt strongly enough about it to change careers.

My position may not be to your liking, but it is still based on logical long term social best interests as I see them, and not extremism or prejudice.

Comment: Re:If he's sufficiently important... (Score 2) 207

by gstoddart (#49380565) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Dealing With User Resignation From an IT Perspective?

I understand what you're saying, and generally I agree.

But as often as not it is HR who is the ones enforcing the policy of "get him out the door now".

But many many places treat departing employees as liabilities to be removed as quickly as possible.

It can most certainly be the case that HR is the ones who are treating you like a pariah, and acting like dicks. So, good luck with changing that.

Comment: Re:If he's sufficiently important... (Score 2) 207

by gstoddart (#49380473) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Dealing With User Resignation From an IT Perspective?

Well, it may be poorly worded, but I have seen several places which have the blanket policy of not keeping people around for their last two weeks.

They're not quite so confrontational about it, at least not directly ... but the assumption is "you've resigned, we no longer care or trust you".

Some employers treat giving your notice as your last day, even if that means they pay you for that time and don't see you.

Comment: Re:Ummm ... (Score 1) 21

by PPH (#49380407) Attached to: Cetaceans Able To Focus Sound For Echolocation

Hasn't this been known for some time?

I think so. Research dating back a few decades has associated cetacean melons with the echolocation function, including some species ability to shape this organ. The purpose of such shaping has probably been understood, as some advanved sonars use similar techniques for beam forming and impedance coupling.

Comment: Re:Dumping (Score 1, Flamebait) 71

by gstoddart (#49380077) Attached to: Microsoft Considered Giving Away Original Xbox

You know, when a multi-billion dollar company who spends more on R&D than pretty much everyone else hasn't the slightest idea of what they want to build a product for, and no clear picture for it ... that's pathetic

If one of the largest corporations is stumbling around like drunken monkeys and finding success through sheer accident, the the CEO is a grossly overpaid idiot who could be replaces with a bunch of drunken monkeys.

And yet I'm sure Ballmer or whoever it was got paid massive amounts of money to have no better track record than a drunken monkey.

Sorry, I'm not asking for prescience, I'm asking for some measure of competence.

This aint it.

Comment: Re:Dumping (Score 3, Funny) 71

by gstoddart (#49379855) Attached to: Microsoft Considered Giving Away Original Xbox

And, as usual, without having the slightest idea of what to do with the technology other than try to get market share.

So I'm forced to conclude most of the successes Microsoft has had in the last decade or more have largely been accidental instead of strategic, and that Microsoft just stumbles around in the dark until something works.

And then they spend years trying to understand why it worked in the first place and how to replicate it.

It's official, Microsoft is the Inspector Clouseau of the tech world.

That's pretty sad.

Comment: Re:Ummm ... (Score 1) 21

by gstoddart (#49379803) Attached to: Cetaceans Able To Focus Sound For Echolocation

Well, having seen the videos of dolphins herding fish into a swirling snack-bar using their sonar, and have seen the explanation of them changing their sonar output.

They have a huge chunk of their brain dedicated to doing this stuff, and I thought they could even stun fish with it.

I'm not saying I could do it, but I got the impression this is stuff we've already know they can do.

Comment: Ummm ... (Score 1) 21

by gstoddart (#49379403) Attached to: Cetaceans Able To Focus Sound For Echolocation

Hasn't this been known for some time?

I've seen footage of hunting dolphins and whales herding fish into "sonar corrals" and then eating them, and I though I'd heard that the dolphins et al can focus their sonar to fight off things like sharks.

Maybe I'm missing something, but I thought it had been established for a very long time that these things have really fine control over their sonar and can do all sorts of stuff with them.

Is this actually something new? Or am I just reading this wrong?

Surely if I know dolphins et al can focus their sonar it's common knowledge.

Comment: Re:So doe sthis mean I can... (Score 1) 1055

I haven't seen any bigotry in these comments, and I think it's disingenuous for you to say so.

Arguing that we should have the right not to do business with groups we dislike, which was precisely the excuse given in the 60's by people who didn't blacks in their restaurant, is not-so-thinly veiled bigotry. It's painful listening to those who don't know history trying to repeat it, desperately hoping that this time it will be different and they'll be allowed to show "those people" who's in charge.

For the record, I'm not black, gay, or liberal. But things like this are exactly the reason why I'm no longer a Republican. I just can't go along willingly with the Attempt Of The Week to make this a hyperconservative theocracy. When someone inevitably comes along and wants to deny my right to fully participate in society, I hope we'll have built the momentum to shut it down.

If a thing's worth having, it's worth cheating for. -- W.C. Fields