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Comment: Re:Were Hunter-gatherers doing better (Score 2) 92

by janek78 (#48443287) Attached to: How "Big Ideas" Are Actually Hurting International Development

Please define "better". For myself, the greatest achievement of humankind is the advancement of knowledge about the world. Depending on what your priorities are, you could argue that a different era was "better" (e.g. less polution, less stress [doubtful], more "natural", or whatever floats your boat). But if you give up on what makes us what we are, you could argue that the best way to live your life is to be in a coma. Yes, today sucks but it is still better than any day before. YMMV.

Comment: Re:So what? (Score 3, Insightful) 261

by janek78 (#44980229) Attached to: Why iOS 7 Is Making Some Users Feel 'Sick'

You're missing the point. It's not that we should all get down to the lowest common denominator, it's about having useless visual bling (that is annoying and distracting even for a healthy person) that serves no useful purpose and CAN'T BE SWITCHED off making the phone unusable for people with a medical condition.

Again, the solution is not to force everyone to use a static UI, it's to give people the choice. Which is something Apple never does, I guess because then there would be people who switch it off and then complain that it does not work. I am an iPhone 5 user recently switched from Android and while the phone works just fine, I sorely miss the ability to actually customise anything.

Comment: Sensitivity vs. specificity (Score 4, Insightful) 81

by janek78 (#43170031) Attached to: Technology To Detect Alzheimer's Takes SXSW Prize

It is very easy to make a test that detects 100% of patients who will eventually get a disease. Just make it always say "positive" and you're done. The hard thing is balancing the ability to detect a disease and avoid false negatives (sensitivity) with the ability to detect absence of disease and avoid false positives (specificity). Related to this are the positive predictive negative predictive values. Since Alzheimer's is very difficult to diagnose clinically and the only definitive proof is a biopsy/autopsy, I very much doubt a screening test would exist with a 100 % sensitivity and/or specificity.

Comment: Re:Good ol' Putin (Score 1) 285

by janek78 (#41297161) Attached to: Nature Lover Vladimir Putin Flies With the Cranes

Wait. These articles are able to glorify Putin in anyone's eyes? I thought by now every new piece about how he saved a puppy from a burning house serves only to further ridicule him and make fun of him. He tries so hard that it became a kind of comedy performance. With a lot of these articles, couple years ago, you could mistake them from something from Onion.com. He became a caricature of himself, an iron-fisted evil dictator who's trying so hard people laugh at him.

Comment: Re:should have been free? (Score 4, Interesting) 135

by janek78 (#40470115) Attached to: Seth MacFarlane Helps LOC Acquire Carl Sagan Papers

I am not so sure there is that much to be ticked-off by. Sagan's widow is quoted as saying that "...Sagan would have been thrilled to see his life’s work made available to the public." That does not sound like a greedy estate trying to get rich from selling stuff she inherited (not that there would be anything wrong with that). TFA is unclear on what the money went towards, I can imagine that transporting, sorting, filing and displaying the (large) collection is no easy feat and that the money is perhaps to be spent on that? Mrs. Druyan was not only Sagan's wife but also co-author, I don't see her as waiting for the highest bidder to auction off her inheritance.

Comment: Re:What is the problem being solved? (Score 1) 134

by janek78 (#40230571) Attached to: Buttons That Morph Out of Your Touchscreen

While I agree with your point about touchscreens in cars, I don't see this as a solution, since these buttons are not pressed, they are touched, you can't just use tactile feedback to locate the right button and then press it, you'll "press" any button you touch. Still, I am curious where this technology will evolve and what uses it will find.

Do you suffer painful illumination? -- Isaac Newton, "Optics"

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