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Comment Re:Hole Punch - Double Sided Floppy (Score 1) 249

I admit that I never washed floppies :)

I always tried a nibble copier to copy games from friends. 70% of the time it worked 50%of the time. Ultima IV was one that sort-of worked from my nibble-copied version, but not really. It worked enough that I could try to fight Lord British and get killed though...

Comment Re:Hole Punch - Double Sided Floppy (Score 1) 249

Ah memories. I did that to a game disk (Gunship by Microprose for the C64). But then when I saved a game I forgot to turn it over to the "blank" side and ended up wiping the game. That I had borrowed. And then had to come up with $35 (!) to replace it. One of my first auto-LARTs.

While the sound of the 1540 chugging away was nice, it's hard to replace the bare-metal sound of the TI-99/4A tape drive loading a program :)

Comment Re:In 7th grade... (Score 2) 249

I didn't really have a chance as it was a short-lived experiment; while I liked to consider the basement workshop to be my own RC lab (aka super-secret lair for The Devising of Strange Contraptions to Masturbate With), the reality was that I needed to disassemble Said Device before I risked having to explain the Purpose to my dad...

I hate to break it to you, but your Dad probably already knew the Purpose of the Device.

Comment Re:Activity or productivity (Score 1) 165

Where I am at you get points (with bonus $$$ allocated on a per-point basis) for being "a good citizen" -- e.g. organizing material for collaboration, putting a subject-based website together, etc.... In general, they are things that don't have a direct correspondence with a particular "mission goal" (or part of your job description) but it helps everyone do their work better/stronger/faster.

Comment Re: To be expected (Score 1) 246

I do the same (Ubuntu host, Win 7 VM). The only issue I have is that the win7 pro VM I have takes a very long time to boot up -- not sure if there is a way to speed it up. I only allocate 8Gb of RAM but it seems like that should be enough...

I'll have to try the playonlinux for office. I have been trying to get Evolution to work with the job's Exchange server without much success and maybe that would give me an alternative that would take me one step closer to ditching even the Windows VM I have...

Comment Re:Groklaw Needed More Than Ever (Score 1) 457

Java uses a single-inheritance model wherein ultimately everything is implicitly a subclass of the Object base class. Therefore, you are unable to write code that does not ultimately extend or enhance the Object class.

To say this modifies the API is probably an overstatement, but technically (which is the best kind of right) it is extending it. Also, you do modify the intrinsic behavior of Object by overriding its methods (e.g. equals(...) and hash()) when needed.

Comment Re:Amazing and dreadful, simultaneously (Score 1) 381

Hmmm...that is exactly the opposite of my experiences contracting (1099 and W2). The pay is usually way more than being an FTE. As far as days off, when I did W2, then I would get payed for holidays. I was getting about 75% of the total billing rate (at that time I recall that being pretty standard...maybe it is different now) with that gig, so it's not like I didn't earn those days off -- it just levelled out my paycheck a bit.

The best part of being paid hourly though is...being paid hourly. One gig I started and essentially sat on my butt (well...experimented with code, learned some new APIs etc...) for several months while the business fiddled around trying to figure out what to do. It was great paid training. Once they decided they needed something built, it hit a time crunch so I effectively doubled my income for a month or two working 60-80 weeks. It was glorious. Also I didn't have to worry about the office politics (layoffs were going to happen soon) so it was nice just working on my hourly work.

Yeah - it is harder to deal with getting new contracts, getting let go at any time, etc... but the realty in today's market is that FTEs still have to worry about that too...and are more open to abuse, don't get paid for their work, etc...Why not face reality and at least get compensated for it?


Comment Re:Why isn't this illegal again? (Score 1) 614

It's actually a little more complicated than that. The ability to get state licensure for a foriegn medical graduate (FMG -- which also includes US-born students that attend international medical or Caribbean medical schools) is more rate limited by the ability to obtain the requisite post-graduate (e.g. residency) training required for licensure. Residency spots in general are limited by the ACGME (American Council of Graduate Medical Education) and ultimately by congress as post-graduate medical education is funded through Medicare. The number of residency spots for a particular specialty vary, but in general the more desirable the residency, the fewer number of spots (e.g. dermatology, opthamology, etc...). FMGs have a very difficult time matching into competetive residencies and most will match to less competetitive and more plentiful primary care fields.

Once an ACGME accrediated residency is finished (or technically at least one year is finished -- which is enough to qualify to sit for and pass USMLE Step 3 licensure) then state licensure is not an issue. It is a pain in the ass, but as long as you haven't had a criminal record, disciplinary actions, etc... then you just need to shell out the $60 - $800 (depending on the state) and jump through bureaucratic hoops for an unrestricted state license.

So really the states have little to do with supply. The ACGME and congress (through funding allocation) perform more of that function.

Comment Re:It's not that complicated (Score 1) 532

CPT 87481 Bacterial vaginosis swap
CPT 87491 Gonorrhea/chlamydia test
CPT 87791 infectious agent by DNA amplification

That's a little strange because the G/C test (87491) generally is performed using DNA amplification (87791). (You could do antigen detection, but I don't think that is really done as standard practice anymore). So it looks like the same thing is billed twice.

Like you say, medical billing is a nightmare though.

Comment New government regulation in Brownbackistan? (Score 1) 302

Regardless of your thoughts on Uber, this does leave me a little confused given the good Governer's pro-business, small government stance. Isn't this government regulation? Isn't this the OPPOSITE of the political principles of the conservative Republican base? Shouldn't the marketplace be allowed to take care of the question?

Comment What are they trying to do again? (Score 1) 33

It is unclear where in the diagnostic chain this idea fits. Is it someone that already carries a diagnosis of lymphoma, but there is a question the diagnosis is wrong? Is it using lab data to make a primary diagnosis (or suggestion of diagnoses) based on a clinic visit? Are they suggesting that this data fits an ancillary role in primary diagnosis in terms of resolving subtle discrepancies between diagnoses?

Pretty much all hematopoietic malignancy diagnoses do not come from the docs you see in the clinic. They come from the docs in the back rooms with microscopes, lasers, antibodies, sequencers, and computers. Is the user of this information the person in the front whom you talk to, or the person in the back making the actual diagnosis?

Also, FTA

Szolovits is confident that that the teamâ(TM)s model can help doctors make more accurate lymphoma diagnoses based on more comprehensive evidence â" and could even be incorporated into future WHO guidelines.

To paraphrase Yet Another Famous Movie Quote: Getting something into the WHO guidelines ain't like dusting crops, boy.

"Lead us in a few words of silent prayer." -- Bill Peterson, former Houston Oiler football coach