Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?

Comment Board Printing with Pick and Place is the Future (Score 1) 196

One of the Tech Crunch 2015 winners was Voltara V-One. Target price is sub-$2k (eventually) for a machine that will do 2-layer PCB printing, insulation curing, solder paste dispensing and reflow. Might be expensive for the home user, but I can see Maker workshops installing them.

It's not even the first PCB printer, there are several on the market already in the $3K range.

Comment Happens All The Time (Score 3, Interesting) 43

The only thing that's weird about that is that is wasn't while leaving the company. Typically financial advisors do a data dumb of their clients and holding when they decide to switch to a different firm. The moment the advisor puts in notice a whole team of people work to contact customers to get permission to move so that the assets can be re-papered under the new firm. It's not unusual for a team to meet with an advisor and personally fly the paperwork/data back to the home office in order to speed up the transition.

Comment It's About Warranty Repairs (Score 1) 411

Experts are thinking it has a lot more to do with reducing wear and tear on the very expensive Diesel Particulate Filter (DPS). The majority of states have testing requirements and under the CA 7/70 and Federal 8/80 emissions control warranty rules VW would likely be on the hook to fix any issues.

Comment Re:Amortization, Medical Interpetation, Bistromath (Score 1) 311

Sure, the cost of the machine has come down, but the cost the provider charges to use the machine continues to rise. Yes, there's heavy negotiate between provider and insurer but actual prices are driven on U&C (Usual and Customary) for the market. Unless there's a rouge provider in the market that lowers costs the U&C contracts are all about inflation adjustments.

Comment Re:PET, CAT and MRIs Are Cheap. We Overpay in the (Score 1) 311

That's a nice opinion, but the facts are there are plenty of first world countries that have private health insurance that delivery the same quality of care for a fraction of the price. The commonality is price controls. When someone needs urgent medical attention they are in no position to shop prices.

I've consulted for many health insurance companies. I've worked specifically around cost of care and price transparency. Let's look at this statement:

"Your $1500 MRI is not a fair market price. That price contains a massive subsidy for people on government programs."

So how exactly does a hospital subsidize a gov't program? Most of them are not-for-profits and pay no taxes. Most Hospitals are fine with people on gov't programs because they usually have insurance of some sort. They charge $1500 for the MRI because it's not an open market.

What brings costs up is greed and inefficiency. Massachusetts was once the poster child for out of control health care costs. While people tout RomneyCare for bringing down costs in actuality that did very little to control costs. What did get costs under control was gov't restrictions passed years after he left office on health care premium increases. That forced insurance companies, hospitals, drug makers, medical device suppliers and doctors to renegotiate contracts. They went from being the state with the highest rise in health care costs to one of the lowest. Starve the beast and somehow they found a way to all make money.

Comment Re:PET, CAT and MRIs Are Cheap. We Overpay in the (Score 3, Interesting) 311

Typically in Europe the MRI/CT imaging machine run 2-3 times as long daily. The capital cost of the machine can be spread much further. It's not uncommon in the USA to see the machines run from 7am to 1pm. The same thing applies to Operating Theaters US vs Europe too.

While I can understand this in more rural areas of the United States it holds true in dense urban areas as well.

Comment PET, CAT and MRIs Are Cheap. We Overpay in the US (Score 4, Informative) 311

A $1500 MRI in the United States is about $150 elsewhere. Same machine, same cost of living. The excess costs are come from time the machine isn't in use, how much we pay specialists to review the scans and how the machines are generally used as a profit center for providers.

Want to pay less, have a single price list for fees set by the gov't. That's what other countries do, even the ones with private health insurance.

Comment Several Chinese Airlines Already Do This (Score 1) 373

For at least a decade a number of Chinese Airlines have been doing this for their coach class customers. In particular on domestic segments where the planes are configured to be really tight. There are industry standard weight and balance calculations and they had to be updated in the late 90s because North Americans and Western Europeans all weigh more than they used to.

Comment There will always be something better (Score 1) 126

Front end browser development is littered with dozens of front end frame works that have fizzled over the years. YUI, Prototype, script. aculo.us, etc. All popular in their day. jQuery is still active but certainly on the decline.

You want to be a good front end developer? Learn about the DOM model. Learn about HTTP, HTTP/2 and CSS. Learn the fundamentals of how all that stuff works together and then you'll never need to worry about picking up whatever front end framework is used by the cool kids.

Saliva causes cancer, but only if swallowed in small amounts over a long period of time. -- George Carlin