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Comment No surprise - I work in the industry (Score 4, Informative) 122

Incompetence abounds in the health care industry:

1. Legacy mainframe systems that have no data integrity - dates like 99/99/9999 are considered valid

2. Legacy mainframe systems that have no data integrity - tabs present in names & addresses, so a tab-delimited extract then proves challenging

3. IT Staff who refuse to block China and the -stans (despite having only US coverage), saying that it is not a complete solution.

4. On the database side, passwords stored in cleartext. Surprisingly, this apparently isn't a violation of PCI rules.

My advice? If you have a sensitive claim, pay cash and don't involve the insurance company. This is difficult, and may require you to use a different doctor when going this route. Bonus points if you can use fake ID. You would be absolutely astonished at where the claims data goes. Third parties get all sorts of data. HIPAA exclusions are enormous. If you think only your doctor knows about your embarassing drug addiction/sexual disease/mental health problem you are grossly mistaken.

Comment law enforcement (Score 1) 727

Your Patreon post states "So, I waste hours documenting this for law enforcement."

Can you enumerate the law enforcement reports you've made? Columbus District Attorney said they had no complaint, and you apparently followed up that it was a communication error.

Given the penalties for filing false reports, have you actually filed a report? Please include jurisdiction and date.

Comment Re:Infinity (Score 1) 1067

I believe this is slighly incorrect. In the very first chapter of many algebra/trig/calculus textbooks there's something to the effect that we study y = f(x), where there is only one solution for f(x). In other words, linear. As a kid I wondered why 1/0 was undefined. I only learned at the end of linear algebra, in college, when it came to inverse functions.

We know that x * 0 = 0, for any value of x. However, if we take the inverse operation of multiplication (that is, division), there is an infinite number of solutions for x / 0. Since we're operating in a linear system where there's only one solution for y = f(x), having more than one solution is undefined.

Clear as mud... This is why Feynman was a genius and I am not.

Comment Re:Socialism is not working (Score 1) 710

Oh, don't worry, the parent poster is probably complaining about how the top tier got bailed out in 2007-2008. Goldman Sachs et al, because acorrding to Secretary Paulson, tanks would be in the streets if the 1% weren't bailed out. Elizabeth Warren disagrees with this position. but you'll never read about that in the mainstream media. Sad to say, Chomsky was right. 20 years ago, I would never have thought I'd say that....

Comment Shoutout for Godel Escher Bach (Score 2) 57

The ridiculous summary suggesting that garbage produced from a computer program could be considered music immediately reminded me of Douglas Hofstadter's Gödel Escher Bach, where music and its relevance to AI form much of the book. The book (unlike the article) has meaningful thoughts on Chopin, Bach and AI.

Anyone seriously interested in music & computers needs to read this book now.

Submission Google to Ban Ads for Legal Gun Accessories & "Dangerous" Knives: Threatens -> 1

Mark Sauter writes: This morning we received an email from Google with the following title: "Google AdWords Policy Update — Weapons policy restriction."

The email, from the "Google AdWords Team," announces a new policy starting in September for those who advertise on Google Adwords, a service used to attract traffic to Web sites. It bans Adwords advertising for products such as knives "that can be used to injure an opponent in sport, self-defense, or combat" plus "Any part or component that's necessary to the function of a gun or intended for attachment to a gun
Examples: Gun scopes, ammunition, ammunition clips or belts" [and even bb guns!]
We certainly have no problem with Google prohibiting ads involving weapons such as nail bombs and grenades, as it does. But we see a big difference in banning ads for legal products used by many millions of Americans. The ban specifically includes sport and recreational guns and their components.

And it's not just ads that are being threatened. The email (see excepts below) includes the following: "When we make this change, any ads or sites that are identified as violating our revised policy won't be able to run."

In other words, Google is not just threatening to shut down advertising accounts, but also to disable Web sites with content about legal products (or topics?) that it finds politically incorrect. The email did not provide additional detail on the issue of the Web sites. Presumably, Google would shut down sites running on Google's Blogger service, but one could certainly worry the company might use its dominant search engine to make offending sites "disappear" from search results.

Link to Original Source

Submission CIA rendition jet was waiting in Europe to kidnap Snowden 5

Frosty Piss writes: As Edward Snowden made his dramatic escape to Russia a year ago, a secret US government jet previously employed in CIA 'rendition' flights on which terror suspects disappeared into 'black' imprisonment flew into Europe in a bid to spirit him back to the United States. On the evening of 24 June 2013, an unmarked Gulfstream V business jet took off from a quiet commercial airport 30 miles from a Washington DC. regional airport discreetly offers its clients 'the personal accommodations and amenities you can't find at commercial airports'. On its best-known mission, the jet flew a U.S. marshals into the UK on to collect radical cleric Abu Hamza after the United States won an extradition order against him. Only Vladimir Putin's intransigence saved Snowden from a similar travel package. The jet's activities can be followed on many flight tracking websites such as FlightAware

Submission Ask for the resignation of Tom Wheeler (Head of the FCC)->

walterbyrd writes: It is now clear that Tom Wheeler is not a representative of the people, but corporations. Previously to taking his current position Wheeler was the former head of 2 different lobbying organizations, which represented companies like Verizon, Comcast, and At&t. His actions helped turn them into the monopolies that they are today.
Link to Original Source

Comment Donate to the EFF! NOW!!! (Score 5, Insightful) 269

I used to financially support the NRA, under the assumption that they defended the 2nd amendment. A while age I realized that was not actually correct,

The EFF is the best example of an entity that defends *all* amendments. I now financially support them, every month. When NPR comes begging for money I'm happily able to refuse, secure in the knowledge that EFF is far more effective in their use of funds than NPR when it comes to presevring the Constitution.

There are a ton of relatively affluent people here on Slashdot. It certainly wouldn't hurt you to allocate a small amount of money to EFF annually, and we know their results.

A bug in the hand is better than one as yet undetected.