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Comment Animals (Score 1) 34 34

A possible solution would be better simulations so that a student can learn by doing. I think it is a very different than working on a cadaver or simulated patient using conventional methods.

You obviously aren't familiar with surgical departments or you wouldn't have missed practice surgeries on live animals.

For instance: a typical cardiac surgeon, shortly before EACH operation on a human patient, does a practice operation of the same procedure on a live dog.

One pediatric cardiac surgeon was much beloved by his patents and their families, because (with parental permission) he would let the kid adopt the practice dog, rather than sending it to be destroyed. The kid would wake up from surgery with the new puppy beside him, with the same bandages, etc. (and a day or so farther along in recovery). The dog having been through the same procedure and having helped save the kid's life even before they met made for very strong owner/pet bonds. (There's always a live, healthy, practice dog. If the dog dies (or is severely damaged) the assumption is that the procedure failed. You DON'T do a procedure on a human if it just killed a dog. You analyze, adjust the procedure, and repeat until success.)

Getting skills up does NOT require, or usually involve, a lot of practice on JUST advanced simulations, cadavers or, live patients. The live patients are just the last step, when the skills are already finely honed, and the animal models provide immediate feedback, real situations, and automatically correct modelling of mammalian life processes.

Comment Re:Well, sure, but... (Score 1) 176 176

The same argument could be used to require labelling to include all pesticides used in the process, the names of any other chemicals were applied, and even what mechanical processes were applied to the food.

In fact, I think part of the objection GMO manufacturers have with labelling requirements is that they're cherry picking the GMO label but not requiring all the others. If we gave full labels for every food product, with GMO being little more than a bullet point, the amount of text would be so huge that people would just ignore it, much like most of the text on a OTC medication label.

Comment Surplus (Score 1) 176 176

We're collectively producing more rice than we eat. Japan is stockpiling unused rice every year, and the world markets are flooded with cheap rice. Food insufficiency (starvation, malnutrition) is currently a problem of resource allocation, not production.

At the same time, the consumers in the big rice consuming countries aren't eating just "rice". You can typically find many dozens of very specific breeds of rice with differences in flavour, texture, firmness, size and so on. And that's within a single type (Japonica, say).

I suspect this would only be useful for rice grown for feed or as an industrial crop. But for feed, source of starch and so on there are already other, well entrenched crops available, so I don't see much of a practical impact of this development.

Comment Have We Lost the War to Quid Pro Quo Complacency? (Score 2) 203 203

Time and time again I see news articles that seem to herald the idea that users are willing to sacrifice something like privacy for the use of software. Take Facebook for an example. You get a robust and snappy storage and website for communication at the cost of control over your life and privacy. And as I try to explain to people the tradeoffs most of them seem to be complacent. Even I myself use GMail, there's just no better mail service. Even if there were, I'd have to run the server from my home to be sure that I'm in control in it and it's truly free (by your definition). So given that much of the populace isn't even prepared technologically to harness truly free software, don't you think they have slowly accepted the trade offs and that the pros of your arguments -- though sound -- are only possibly realized by those skilled enough to edit source code or host their own mail server from their home?

Comment Companies Selling Actually Free Software? (Score 5, Interesting) 203 203

I found your piece on selling free software to be pretty logical on paper. However, has it ever worked in the wild? Can you name companies or revenues that currently operate on this idea (and I'm not talking about services or support of the software)? I simply can't come up with a widely used monetized piece of software licensed under the GNU GPL whereby the original software was sold at a single price and shipped with the source code -- free for the original purchaser to distribute by the license's clauses. Can you list any revenue generation from that? I must admit I'm not exactly enamored with paying for free software (as in your definition of free) before it's written yet I cannot think of any other way this would fairly compensate the developer.

Comment I don't believe it. (Score 0) 81 81

I think this is a case of "Blame the dead guy, because he can't defend himself."

I cannot believe that an experienced test pilot, in his right mind, would not have thought through the possible consequences of actuating that lever at a higher speed than it was designed for. I simply cannot believe it. Especially given than history is littered with examples of airplanes not being able to pull out of dives due to control surfaces not responding properly (or ripping off) in supersonic or transonic flow. Alsbury would have been intensely aware of these concepts.

I think that it is more likely that that, if he actually did pull the lever, Alsbury was disoriented or mentally compromised due to some other factor.

Comment Re:A simple proposition. (Score 1) 357 357

What is the alternate solution? Are you willing to pay for a subscription to every site you visit? Do you want more "native content" intermixed with all these articles?

Or, you know, less content. It's not as if we're all sitting around wishing there was more stuff on the internet to read, right?

We pay a monthly subscription for our online daily newspaper. I occasionally pay for things such as printed anthologies of online comics I follow, buy books by authors whose blogs and articles I read. I subscribe to a couple of websites.

At one end there is high-quality content such as newspapers (which is high quality in my home country) and other stuff like I listed above. Stuff that is good enough that people really do want to pay for it.

At the other end a lot of people out there are creating good stuff completely for free. You've got academics, programmers and other professionals with a day job that write to spread what they learn. You've got hobbyists sharing their passion. Small businesses publishing good stuff to promote their name and skills. Factual events are widely and freely reported.

The content farms, clickbait sites and the rest out there is squeezed between these two. The high-quality stuff sets the bar for what people expect in order to part with their money. The free stuff sets the bar on what people accept before they abandon you and leave for better sources.

If your business depends on having so much advertising that it drives people to block stuff or leave, then you have no business being in business at all.

Comment Re:Page loading has always been far slower with ad (Score 1) 357 357

When you say the ads have "lousy" response rates, you're making a comparison. The only number they can compare to is either a fantasy (what they think the click-through rate should be so that they'll strike it rich) or existing obtrusive ads. Neither of these work with reality, where most people will rarely click on an ad intentionally, and even fewer will actually spend any money.

Advertisers will do whatever they can to increase their revenue, that's why we've had pop-ups, drive by installs, ads that spread malware, auto-playing video ads, etc. The only thing way to control it is for browsers to put heavy limits in place (like built-in pop-up blockers, or Chrome disabling secondary flash elements). Pretty soon things like uBlock will just start getting built in to the browser. When the advertisers bitch, we'll just point them to behavior like this that demonstrates their bad faith.

Comment Re:I don't get it (Score 1) 357 357

Why don't publishers put the ads in a section of the page that can allow the rest of the page to load and render before the ad loads and renders?

Because you could stop the loading once the content you wanted was rendered, thus skipping the ad.

So the pages are set up so the ad loads and renders first.

Comment Better News? (Score 1) 96 96

...the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, which called the ITA expansion 'great news for the American workers and businesses that design, manufacture, and export state-of-the-art technology and information products, ranging from MRI machines to semiconductors to video game consoles.'"

Uh-huh. Right.

You know what would be even better news for US tech hardware exporters?

If they didn't have a huge boat anchor attached in the form of NSA built-in backdoors and vulnerabilities.

Really, if you're a foreign corporation that competes in any way with US corporations/interests/research, or any government/organization/individual that US TLAs could possibly even tangentially term "of interest", would you buy stuff from US makers/manufacturers despite what's been revealed publicly over the last 20 years to present concerning US TLA activity within the US tech manufacturing/exporting industries?

Particularly in light of the recent revelations of so many unlawful and/or unconstitutional programs and activities engaged in by US intelligence organizations courtesy of the courageous whistle-blower Edward Snowden, which keep revealing new programs that violate constitutional principles and prohibitions with every new dump from the trove.

US tech companies have to overcome all that (quite understandable and logical) mistrust (good luck!), and *then* compete against other corporations that don't have that perceived millstone around their necks.

This will not turn out well for the US tech industries that need/rely on exporting their goods, and with cheap imports flowing into the US, even those who were national/regional in nature will find themselves priced out of the market.

1. Mining/Drilling - Offshored

2. Steel mfg - Offshored

3. Heavy Industries/Factories - Offshored

4. Artificial politically-motivated limits on energy production and artificially-created increases in cost.

5. ...?

I'm not liking the direction this is trending.

If it roughly parallels past similar historical scenarios, it doesn't end well for anyone in the US (well, except those 'too big to starve'), neither Left nor Right, nor atheists, Christians, Muslims, or whatever "ism" or party you favor.


Comment Re:Won't allow forwarding? (Score 1) 198 198

The only part of this that is related to gmail is that it is a chrome extension that adds the feature to the gmail interface. It sends the user an email link to view the message on a webpage, and then deletes the message later. It probably captures select and right click events in order to be "secure" too. In short, it is garbage.

So, it's not email then. "Go to this website, we have a message for you." No.

Comment Re:I've had issues with the Win10 NVIDIA drivers.. (Score 1) 316 316

No doubt peripheral manufacturers will take advantage of this to silently install shovelware on users' machines, like Logitech's "Download Assistant". This will be the new avenue used by advertisers to install themselves in the system tray or browser. Microsoft themselves have endorsed this by silently installing a Windows 10 nag using Windows update.

There are worse things in life than death. Have you ever spent an evening with an insurance salesman? -- Woody Allen