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Comment: Nuisance Lawsuit. (Score 1) 283

by amper (#35834450) Attached to: Apple Faces Class-Action Suit For In-App Purchases

1. You cannot buy anything from the App Store without having entered and stored a credit card account with Apple.
2. IOS has always had the ability to disable App Store purchases, both for apps, and for In-App Purchases.
3. Children should not be given such things without proper supervision.

Apple should countersue these stupid people for being such a nuisance.

Comment: Re:Read more carefully: 'irreversible' impotence (Score 2) 235

by amper (#35769950) Attached to: Merck's Drug Propecia Linked To Sexual Dysfunction

Actually, DHT is far more potent an androgen than testosterone, and is the primary androgen responsible for masculinization. If you block the metabolism of testosterone into dihydrotestosterone, you have dramatically decreased the levels of androgens in your body, plus the testosterone gets metabolized through other enzymes into estradiol, the primary estrogen responsible for feminization.

Comment: Re:Not surprised (Score 2) 235

by amper (#35769894) Attached to: Merck's Drug Propecia Linked To Sexual Dysfunction

Yes, but it's DHT that's primarily responsible for the androgenic effects in your body. Blocking the 5-alpha-reductase enzyme which causes testosterone to be converted to dihydrotestosterone *does* leave more free testosterone in the body, but it get shunted to another metabolic pathway due to lack of 5-alpha-reductase, and is metabolized into estradiol, which is the primary estrogen in post-pubescent and pre-menopausal females.

Small wonder that long term usage of finasteride might cause permanent sterility and/or erectile dysfunction. Less androgens and more estrogens in the body eventually leads to exactly that.

Anyone who knows anything about transsexual transition-related hormone replacement therapy known this, but unfortunately, as very few studies have actually been undertaken regarding the administration of the drugs generally used for trans HRT specifically for that purpose, the information is pretty much only looked at by those of us who need to know it.

Basically, nobody's "allowed" to talk about this, because none of these drugs have ever been approved by the FDA for transition-related therapy. I wouldn't be surprised if that's the angle the defendants use to counter the lawsuit, and if that helps open up the channels for better research into trans healthcare needs.

Comment: Re:Not exactly (Score 1) 716

by amper (#35708794) Attached to: Apple's Secret Weapon To Win the Tablet Wars

No company can keep up selling polished turds for over 10 years and still have the whole world think their products are great while they aren't. You might be able to pull that off once, using sufficient hype and a big marketing push that distracts from the downsides of your product, but if it actually sucks and is not worth it's money, you'll be out of business within 1 or 2 generations of your product. Nobody buys a polished turd twice.

Please explain, given the above statements, the financial success of Microsoft.

Comment: Re:The example in TFA is just silly (Score 1) 354

by amper (#35661902) Attached to: Ma Bell Stifled Innovation, AT&T May Do the Same

It's rather more likely than the monopoly being open. How long does proprietary technology generally last in an open market?

The point really, is that because AT&T controlled the whole system, there was no need whatsoever for them to be open about the technologies they developed that were directly applicable to telecommunications, nor was there really much need for them to apply many technologies they developed that they could have capitalized upon, so the charge of stifling innovation is apt.

What's even more interesting is that we will never know if competition would have spurred the development and deployment of carrier transmission systems that are far more powerful, efficient, and flexible than the T system had competition been imposed on AT&T earlier. As you pointed out, the T carrier system was developed and deployed decades before the information on how it worked made its way to the open marketplace. It was never improved because AT&T had no need for efficiency, being a monopoly.

As an aside, I will note that having been involved in the installation of T carriers hundreds of times in my career since the mid 90's, I can tell you that the ways in which the physical assets comprising the telecommunications infrastructure are depreciated are an accountant's wet dream, or so it has be related to me by Bell personnel.

Comment: Re:The example in TFA is just silly (Score 5, Interesting) 354

by amper (#35654054) Attached to: Ma Bell Stifled Innovation, AT&T May Do the Same

As someone who did a lot of work in the early-mid 1990's helping to commercialize the Internet, I have to say that I must respectfully disagree.

AT&T, as they were constituted, had a very long history of secrecy and obstruction of technological innovations reaching the general marketplace. Let me ask you this, have you ever seem any non-Ma Bell publicly available books prior to the 90's describing how T circuits work? No, you haven't, because they didn't exist. This information was guarded very carefully by AT&T as proprietary information and as trade secrets. Very, very few people understood how these things worked back then, and most of those were former AT&T and Baby Bell employees.

Did Bell Labs create new things? Sure they did, just the same as Xerox's Palo Alto Research Center created things, and IBM's T.J. Watson Research Center created things. The difference was, AT&T had a government protected monopoly and used their monopoly power to stifle competition, so they kept all these things in-house. The other guys only dropped stuff that they didn't feel had commercial potential, and they weren't monopolies, anyway. It wouldn't have mattered if other companies came up with technological innovations in telecommunications, unless they thought they could sell them to AT&T, because they wouldn't have be able to commercialize them with AT&T controlling the market. The real advantage of the break up was not price competition, but that AT&T had to start sharing the market with other companies, and because of that, they were forced to let other companies know how to make their systems interoperable with the existing infrastructure.

Biotech

+ - Chemical Desalination of Seawater? 1

Submitted by amper
amper (33785) writes "I've been studying seawater desalination products for use on board small yachts and life rafts, and the commonly available reverse osmosis devices are both highly expensive and difficult to operate. The only real alternative to a desalination pump for emergency use is carrying as much fresh water as possible, but this idea is not without its own problems. Is there some chemical process that could be easily packaged in a manner similar to the iodine and chlorine tablets that are sold for fresh water purification that would remove excess salts from seawater? What I envision is some chemical or combination of chemicals that would cause the sodium chloride, and possibly other salts or contaminants, to precipitate out of the solution so the now fresh water can be decanted."

What the large print giveth, the small print taketh away.

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