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Comment: Re:This is why "health insurance" is so expensive (Score 1) 138

by Tromad (#35109780) Attached to: Algorithm Contest Aims To Predict Health Problems

According to the safeway article linked above:

Safeway's plan capitalizes on two key insights gained in 2005. The first is that 70% of all health-care costs are the direct result of behavior. The second insight, which is well understood by the providers of health care, is that 74% of all costs are confined to four chronic conditions (cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes and obesity). Furthermore, 80% of cardiovascular disease and diabetes is preventable, 60% of cancers are preventable, and more than 90% of obesity is preventable.

They probably know what they are talking about, seeing as how their premiums have remained stable over 4 years while the average increased 38%.

Comment: Re:Show us the evidence of evolution! (Score 1) 947

by Tromad (#35036318) Attached to: Teachers Back Away From Evolution In Class

I don't think you're getting the point, you can't really hand most kids a 1000 page evolutionary textbook and expect them to get anything out of it. Even "Evolution for Dummies" is rated college material. I've read On the Origin of the Species, and I'd argue that is college material as well and way too dull for typical HS kids. You could argue high school textbooks should cover this, and they slightly do, but as the OP stated, they typically spend more time explaining the end process rather than examining the scientific processes behind it, and even then evolution is probably just a 15 minute lecture when you have to cram most of fundamental biology in a semester.

What would probably be immensely helpful is a 20-30 page supplemental packet in every HS biology textbook (other than TX I guess) that clearly and scientifically goes through the process of evolution and how it affects our daily lives. Make it "lowest common denominator" and engaging so the parents and imbeciles can understand it, but include supplemental hard science in the last several pages for teachers and intelligent students.

Comment: Adventure game? (Score 1) 134

by Tromad (#35018086) Attached to: The Rise and Fall of Graphic Adventure Games

Depending on your definition, the "adventure genre" is more alive than ever. There are 23 Nancy Drew games for the PC. BigFish games has almost or as many. Go look at the PC selection at target, about a quarter of it is Nancy Drew/BigFish/other adventure games. These might not be as polished as Myst or King's Quest but there certainly is a lot of them.

Comment: Re:And the best part... (Score 1) 815

by Tromad (#34988182) Attached to: Italian Scientists Demonstrate Cold Fusion?

We still don't understand the causes of depression, which affects about 10%-25% of the US at any given time. There is the serotonin hypothesis, except about half the modern drugs for depression don't target serotonin. That doesn't stop people from doing research and creating drugs and treatments for it, even if they do not truly understand the mechanism.

Comment: Re:Die fighting, die trying, die hard... (Score 1) 392

by Tromad (#34961898) Attached to: J.J. Abrams Promises 'Fringe' Will Die Fighting

And what exactly are you waiting for, a popular hard-science sci-fi melodrama? Good luck with that. In the "new age" of popular sci-fi (Caprica, SGU, Dollhouse), Fringe is the only one with identifiable characters that is at least consistently interesting. And if you think that after they cancel Fringe the next step is hard-science sci-fi, I'm going to gamble the next step is rather "sci-fi is too expensive and dead". While Fringe is pure pseudoscience, I have a hard time believing FTL travel (warp drives) or pretty much anything else in Star Trek is that much more believable.

Comment: Re:*sigh* (Score 1) 91

by Tromad (#34801026) Attached to: <em>LotR Online's</em> Free-To-Play Switch Tripled Revenue

Except you are wrong, kids with mommy's credit card don't rule supreme, they just level faster. You can buy stat buffs but they're relatively worthless and can be earned in game. You can buy XP boosts, but all they do is count as rested XP, and the cost isn't really worth it. You can buy traits, except those can also be earned in game.

I was VIP and now I'm free to play because money is tight. The only perceptible difference I can see is that now I don't earn rested XP. I have a bunch of points they gave me for subbing and just from playing, but I am saving them for quest packs. This model is actually greatly beneficial for me as I sparingly play MMOs. I subb when I'm heavily playing, then cancel and still have access to nearly the full game and have points to purchase quests I'm missing.

It's actually stacked pretty heavily in the player's favor. I can't see how Turbine will be able to keep this up without either a constant influx of new users or rapidly creating new content.

Comment: Re:Longevity Award Re:PAF (Score 1) 292

by Tromad (#34613506) Attached to: Best Open Source Genealogy Software?

Thanks, I did download it and it seems like a win98 app. I figured it would feature some mormom "find all my ancestors" button but it looks like it is all manual. My grandma uses some proprietary software and my grandmother in-law uses something completely different, and I doubt there is any way of merging the data without starting from scratch. I'd like to do this before they die but it looks like I'm going to have to do more research into it.

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