Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed


Forgot your password?
Slashdot Deals: Deal of the Day - Pay What You Want for the Learn to Code Bundle, includes AngularJS, Python, HTML5, Ruby, and more. ×

Comment Re:Very misleading title and description ! (Score 1) 437

"You fell down, AND you've lost a limb AND you've got hemophilia? Too bad, falls are all Category B. NEXT!"

One fundamental part of using these Medical Priority Dispatch Systems, especially the software-based systems used in the US is that the dispatcher/call taker is presented the option at the end of the KQ (Key Question) section with a set of choices (or earlier if the situation warrants it). If we use your example list above with the fall et. al. you'd normally get: 30D01: Trauma to dangerous Body Area, 17B03: Fall of unknown distance, 21B03: Bleeding Disorder, or 17D00: Fall - Override to choose as the primary determinant (Loss of limb already has forwarded the call to dispatch since that's a delta response anyway, but we'll overlook that part for the moment.) That *D00 code lets the dispatcher say "Hmmm. The computer is saying this isn't a high priority, but something here isn't fitting with common sense/reality, so I'm upgrading the priority and changing this determinant based on my training and telling dispatch this is the higher priority." No matter how good the software is, you take out the human element and you will have problems.

The only "software" problem I've ever encountered, and what the original Telegraph article seems to casually allude to be the crux of the case here, is that almost all of these systems allow the end user (dispatch centre director/administrator/government committee) to modify the decision tree to meet their "needs" without enforcing the common sense rules they started with when the software was implemented. When used as designed, as soon as the dispatcher entered she wasn't breathing normally (usually question #3: How is the person breathing? Answer = Agonal Breathing = immediate configuration of call to a 17D04 Fall - Abnormal Breathing), the call would automatically re-configure to a Delta priority and in most systems is automatically forwarded to a dispatcher with the information up to that point for immediate dispatch of an EMS crew.

Going back to the poster's example, the loss of limb would have triggered that re-configuration to a Delta Response and started a dispatch immediately as loss of extremity = 21D01 - Dangerous Haemorrhage. Again, the end user can configure these responses to a different coding, but only after being prompted several times, in a separate configuration menu that requires an administrative password to even access let alone change anything, that this isn't how the system is designed to work and reminding them they could loose their MPDS certification if they continue.

The problem isn't so much the software as it is the implementation and oversight. There are times when you want to change the decision tree (your jurisdiction decides that a call for chest pain is getting a C-response regardless of patient age, onset, or breathing status (Usually because the people that fund you, or worse, their lawyers, want someone going blinky-blinky, woo-woo down the road any time someone has a pain in their chest). Other areas don't use the Omega protocol level for obvious signs of death because people listening on scanners know what that means and the TV crews might beat the ambulance to the scene of the carnage (and yes, I've seen that one happen before).

1) Depending on what MPDS system you use, the card numbers and modifiers may be different than those shown here.
2): This is all based on the US implementation of MPDS as it was developed for and is implemented in the American 9-1-1 system where the following is true: The first number, the determinant, gives basic type of response (17 - falls, 21 -Haemorrhage) The letter indicates priority, given as Alpha through Echo with Alpha being lowest priority (I gotta hangnail) and Echo for eminent death (Blood is shooting out of his neck in pulses) and the occasional Omega for Obvious DOA (Ummm where's the head that goes with this body). Finally the last number, the modifier, serves to provide more information about what kind of call the crew is running to (He fell out of his chair, he fell down the stairs, he was skydiving and his parachute didn't open).
3): I am not now, nor have I ever been employed by a developer or provider of MPDS systems, either software or card based, but I have worked on implementing and supporting systems that integrate with said MPDS systems.
4) All situations are different and I'm not an expert (but I have stayed in a Holiday Inn Express) and you should consult more qualified persons before taking anything listed here (or anywhere else, for that matter) as the gospel truth. If you do use what I say for anything in a production environment and haven't paid for said advice, all I will guarantee is that I will stand back at a safe distance and laugh at you when it all goes tits-up.

Comment Re:Cameron is a good director. There, I said it. (Score 1) 782

The FX are first class and lack the significant botches that disturbed the visual experience in 'Attack of the Clones'.

REALLY? That's really the major problem with Attack of the Clowns? Because I thought it was the Script, the Acting, and the Plot that disturbed the visual experience of that stinker. <shudder> The only thing great about that movie was Yoda's fight scene and that was just pure spectacle. Thank god I only paid $1.50 to watch that POS.


Han shoots first.

Comment Re:Ah, that nice French law... (Score 1) 272

The greatest income in history for the US has next-to-nothing to do with US politics. It had everything to do with the fact that post WW2 Europe+japan has NO industry and was rebuilding. While our industrial machine went from war machines to consumer products over night and pumping out product. Also, Europe was repaying loans.

Comment Re:Turn the tables (Score 1) 1364

None of those states allow fullblood first cousin marriages that would produce off-spring.

I know first cousins who have married and have had kids. I know they did some genetic counseling and/or testing beforehand, but I do not know that if that was a requirement of the state that they were married in.

In any case, if you do not like the citation I gave you, a google search: turns up a bunch of others, none of which support your position that no state allows first cousins to marry - most of them seem to say that 19 states allow first cousin marriages without restriction:

Comment No Anonymity = Not Safe For Work (Score 1) 537

Yes, and one of the traditional ways that we used to freely exchange those ideas without the fear of reprisals before the internet came along was the "nom de plume".

People invented separate personae for the purposes of their writing. A lot of the great political and religious pamphleteering that helped reform Europe and bring about the French and American revolutions was published under pen-names. Anything vaguely political published by someone working for a country's civil service tended to be under an n-d-p. Hell, even Gulliver's Travels was published without the real author's name on it, so that he wouldn't lose his day job over it. George Orwell's real name wasn't George Orwell. Voltaire's supposed to have had more than 170 different pen-names.

It doesn't always mean that the author is spineless. Sometimes it just means that the author reckons that their work and "author's persona" is good enough to stand up by itself without the reader needing to know the exact details of who created the arguments, and sometimes it means that the writer finds it easier to continue with their work without having to risk being sacked from their mundane job that pays the rent and keeps a roof over their head, because their employer feels that having the name of a controversial writer on their public list of employees, representing the company, is asking for trouble.

If you demand of your employer that they take no notice at all of your extracurricular activities, because those are none of the employer's business ("What I do in my own time is up to me"), then it's sensible to use different identifiers for your work persona and your other activities. If you use the same linkable identifier for both, and your work involves introducing yourself as an employee of the company and giving out your full legal name, then your employer is liable to reckon that if that name is attached to some "cause" that might alienate some of their important customers, they don't want you as an employee.

They can say, "Look, we don't give a damn what you do in your own time as long as it doesn't reflect on us. We don't care what religious or sexual views you hold as long as you leave them behind when you walk through our door in the morning. But if we're promoting you as our named representative, and you're using that same name to promote other things that we don't want to be associated with, then we have a legitimate reason to sack you."

Taking away people's ability to create separate "brands" for their work and personal online activities means that unless people have very understanding employers, they're liable to self-censor pretty much anything they write for fear of upsetting their work situation.

It also means that if an employer knows that ==anything== their employee does online from home is linked to all the employee's other personal details, including their place of work – including what forums they visit and what iffy websites they view, no matter what computer they use to view it – then it means that the employer can argue that it's now their legitimate right to spend more time tracking what their employees are doing out of work hours, since it could impact on their business.

If you can't decouple your work identity from your recreational web use, it means that you no longer have a personal life (for web-related stuff) that's separate from work.

Comment OK, all my groupies (Score 1) 9

And this includes the Fascism Troll, whom I heart very much.

My tiresome journals I've written describing framing and the link of political ideas to morality had a purpose. And the purpose was to describe why political rhetoric is more effective when it is couched in moral terms, than when it's merely a logical argument.

This video pretty much demonstrates my point. The whole thing is framed in the unspoken moral belief that we are our brother's keepers.

When all liberals effectively frame their rhetoric in compatible frames, and avoid conservative frames, then nobody actually needs to SAY that we are out brother's keepers. It'll be the unspoken "common sense". And if you say it out loud, everyone around will go "duh!" and wonder why you didn't already know that.

Comment Re:US Centric website? (Score 2, Interesting) 1233

Yep, according to my website stats, 56.5% of Slashdot readers are from the USA. The whole of Europe (Russia included) represents 26%. Asia only 1.6%.

Is that people clicking the link to your site?

I assume there are lots more hits from Europe at ~0800-2400 UTC, and from Americans at ~1300-0500 UTC. I certainly post mostly in the UK afternoon or sometimes (like now) the evening, and get moderated accordingly. (In the same discussion, try posting something controversially pro-European and something else pro-American. If you do it in my morning, the first will get +5 and the second -1, then later in the day the +5 will be brought down a bit. If someone sees it, the -1 might go up.)

Comment Easy? (Score 1) 17

Not quite.

You neglected the tenth, fourth, fifth, and fifteenth amendments that he brought up, and glossed over the one you actually mentioned -- the first, freedom of association. His point (and I agree with it) was that you can't be forced to associate with someone you don't want to associate with, even if the someone is an insurance company. The "religion" thing was an afterthought. Had he not put that in, his argument would have stood just as well and yours would have been pointless.

Personally, I want universal health care, but I don't want the government mandating health care, I want government providing it like they do in the EU, Britain, and Canada. What's being proposed is nothing but a windfall for the insurance companies, who are the cause of our health care mess in the first place.

Comment I can back this up (Score 2, Informative) 427

Agreed. Looking at the genome of say, rice, you can easily pick out some genes that are most closely related to genes in fungus than in other plants, and presumably arrived via horizontal gene transfer. Not a lot, but that's because most horizontally transfered genes serve no purpose out of context in such a different form of like and would be preserved or spread through the gene pool.

Comment Bloodwork (Score 1) 369

So, are there any of these performance enhancers that don't require a blood workup and/or regular bloodwork to make sure you're not blowing up your liver? I don't like needles.

Comment Re:saying. "Fast forward to the 21st century" (Score 1) 504

If triple-A titles would cost $20, then kids would buy one about every week as opposed to buying one every 2 months and beeing disappointed about it. If game companies would actually do some market research, they would see that their products are overpriced.

Ordinary kids simply cannot afford the current prices, they do not have the money in comparison to the demand created by the advertisments of game companies to buy all this boring and mentally retarded monster shooting/killing/torturing/burning other people alive game shit.

A committee is a group that keeps the minutes and loses hours. -- Milton Berle