Slashdot is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop


Forgot your password?

Comment: Re:Amateurs (Score 1) 347

by ceoyoyo (#49777713) Attached to: Can Bad Scientific Practice Be Fixed?

Pharmacists are trained to know about medications: that's the major reason why physicians can't usually dispense drugs directly.

Physicians are (or should be) well trained to practice medicine. They're good at diagnosing individual patients, choosing treatments, and monitoring progress. They're invaluable collaborators in medical research because they have direct contact with the patients, and they're the ones who you hope are ultimately going to be applying any advances. But an MD doesn't involve the necessary training to do science. Unfortunately society has confused the two.

I'm a medical scientist. It would be ridiculous, not to mention illegal, for me to diagnose and treat patients. I simply don't have the training. But it's equally ridiculous, though unfortunately not illegal, for an MD (absent specific scientific training like an earned PhD) to design, conduct and analyze a proper experiment. Yet major research grants today tend to go to MDs and it's getting extremely difficult to get a faculty job in medical research without an MD.

Comment: Amateurs (Score 1) 347

by ceoyoyo (#49774533) Attached to: Can Bad Scientific Practice Be Fixed?

In medical research, the problem is that most of it is run by amateurs. Medical doctors receive somewhere between no and very little scientific education, and conduct research in their spare time while not treating patients, yet in North America an MD is considered not only sufficient, but actually desirable for a "clinician scientist." There are some excellent scientists who also hold MDs, but it's secondary to their scientific training. Clinicians have very creative ideas about how to do science.

Comment: Re:Grant money and politics are the problems (Score 4, Informative) 347

by ceoyoyo (#49774489) Attached to: Can Bad Scientific Practice Be Fixed?

Half? In many fields (like medical research) it's essentially all, and there's no "at some point." Many places offer one or two year starting faculty appointments, at the end of which you're expected to have a major grant (success rate is somewhere around 10% on those). So you better get busy writing applications. Once you're established, you better keep writing them, because now you've got a lab full of people depending on you for their livelihood.

Comment: Re:Density matches theory (Score 3, Interesting) 50

by ceoyoyo (#49738015) Attached to: Martian Moons May Have Formed Like Earth's

The impact hypothesis nicely explains why the moon is less dense than Earth: the impact preferentially threw up light elements from the crust and upper mantle, not heavy elements that would have sunk to the core. The densities of Phobos and Deimos are also less than that of Mars, but because they're so small, and are probably more like orbiting gravel piles, their densities are also consistent with small asteroids.

Comment: Re:Aphelion vs Parhelion (Score 2) 50

by ceoyoyo (#49737959) Attached to: Martian Moons May Have Formed Like Earth's

"many of the planets have orbits that are very near circular, but we do not interpret their existence in a similar fashion."

We do actually. It's pretty well accepted that the planets around the sun coalesced from a protoplanetary disc surrounding the young sun. The impact hypothesis for moon formation is similar: a big impact causes debris to be thrown into an orbiting disc around the planet and one or more moons then coalesce out of it. The alternative, capture of a separately orbiting body, isn't seriously considered for the origin of the planets.

Comment: Re:It's My rant (Score 1) 615

by ceoyoyo (#49709413) Attached to: The Economic Consequences of Self-Driving Trucks

See my third paragraph. You're implicitly buying into the myth that people losing their jobs to automation makes the economy poorer. The opposite happens: there's more wealth. Even if a significant number of people lose their jobs and don't get new jobs (or get crappy ones), that loss is more than made up by someone (or everyone) else having more money. There are always customers. The decision whether it's a few super rich people being waited on hand and foot and some people working as gladiators in the entertainment arenas (reality television) or a more equitable distribution, such as in Switzerland where everyone is guaranteed a minimum income, is a political problem that will be solved one way or another. The free market is quite capable of sorting it out by itself, but that way is almost sure to be a lot nastier, probably involving food riots and rich people lined up against walls.

Comment: Re:Won't save most of the 4000 lives (Score 1) 615

by ceoyoyo (#49709385) Attached to: The Economic Consequences of Self-Driving Trucks

Sure, a truck going the same speed as a car can have the brakes fail completely, or the driver have a heart attack too, then it can take twice, three times, or arbitrarily longer to stop than a car. Or vice versa. Sorry, I assumed you were trying to say something relevant.

I quite pointedly said that things are somewhat more complicated with real vehicles than the simple physics analysis of locked wheels. It's not my theory, it's basic physics (which you claimed did not support my original post), and also the formula that most police forces use to estimate (note, estimate) the speed of vehicles involved in collisions.

You are completely ignoring the fact that, as I posted, US regulations require trucks be able to stop in much less than twice the distance cars can, and test results that indicate most (well maintained) trucks can stop quite a bit better than required. In real life, as is demonstrated in transport safety statistics, large trucks are quite frequently poorly maintained and so their stopping distances may well be longer.

Dead? No excuse for laying off work.