Forgot your password?

Comment: Re:I love getting into strangers' cars (Score 1) 273

You have the same amount of "skin in the game", whether the man is driving a paying fare or giving a free ride to a friend.

No, frequency and other conditions are different. It's not an accident that you can bring your friends with you in your small aircraft with just an ordinary (sport) pilot license. If you want to take a paying passenger then you need a transport pilot license.

Same with boats.

Why are taxis different?

The wherewithal comes simply from experience --- not from a license.

And that's (drum roll) one of the conditions of a taxi (i.e. commerical) license in my country. Having sufficient experience that is. The license is there to (among other things) show that you have that experience.

Comment: Re:I love getting into strangers' cars (Score 1) 273

And why must "higher level of skills" be a requirement â" even for the customers, who are perfectly satisfied with average level of skills?

Well, the customers are not the only ones with skin in the game. The rest of us have to share the roads with these "taxis" as well. The major reason that other commercial drivers (or air line pilots for that reason) isn't that they'll necessarily will kill their passengers, but that they will kill a bystander or other motorists. The rules for getting a bus driving license and a heavy truck driving license are the virtually the same, here in Sweden at least, and in one of those cases we're clearly not worried by the safety of the passengers.

It's the same at sea and in the air, if you want to transport paying passengers you have to show a higher level of competence. One reason mentioned in those cases is that you for example have to have the wherewithal to be able to stand up to a pissed off customer when you deem conditions to be unsafe, something that's more difficult (legally/financially) than when you have another passenger.

Comment: Re:Not convinced (Score 5, Insightful) 176

And also something I came to value when working in industry and developing both cli and GUI admin tools for telecoms equipment:

You can easily document, email and (to a lesser extent) talk about a cli. A GUI not so much. When you've tried to walk someone through finding the hidden option in a GUI over the phone for the tenth time you're ready to tear your hair out. With a cli you can just email some commands and that's that. Documenting a GUI invariably devolved to a lot of screenshots which makes any workflow tens of pages long, instead of ten lines of commands which you then have ample space to explain and comment on. It's also much easier to read and follow along as you're e.g. installing, than leafing through screenshot after screenshot.

Comment: Re:Thanks for pointing out the "briefly" part. (Score 1) 461

by lars_stefan_axelsson (#47327381) Attached to: Half of Germany's Power Supplied By Solar, Briefly

It verges on astounding. I've read for years that Germany has ceded sovereign control of its land to Russia for natural gas, and that German citizens would freeze by the tens of thousands if Putin turned off the taps.

And that's largely still true as a matter of fact. HOWEVER, Germany relies less on Putin's gas than Putin relies on Germany's money for that gas. (I.e. the value of Germany's gas imports as a part of their energy expenditure is small compared to the overall hard currency income that Putin receives from selling gas to Europe). Hence we're witnessing the situation with gas used as a weapon against the Ukraine and Belarus, but not against Germany.

That's not to say that it won't happen. Just that it takes more will on the Russian side than what they've been able to muster so far. Don't for a minute think that it doesn't factor in the decisions of Frau Merkel when it comes to sanctions against Russia for their part in the Ukraine debacle though. We would probably be tougher from the European side if it weren't for that gas...

Comment: Re:Thanks for pointing out the "briefly" part. (Score 1) 461

by lars_stefan_axelsson (#47327321) Attached to: Half of Germany's Power Supplied By Solar, Briefly

Oh, then I'm sure you'll find an insurance company that will cover the risk of Fukushima-style accidents. Oh wait, no you don't, because such an insurance would make nuclear energy totally uneconomic.

OTOH, the largest hydro electric dam failures have killed thousands (tens of thousands for the very largest) and you know what: They largest dams are typically insured "by the government" in the same way that nuclear is.

Now, you can actually buy hydro dam insurance on the open market, while that is generally impossible for nuclear, but they don't typically pay without bounds for incidental damage which is the major cost we're facing. Instead relying on government for that part, so while there is some difference, the scenarios are quite similar.

Comment: Re:Everything should be done over WiFi (Score 1) 46

When they come up with a version of wifi that works over the dozens of miles that currently exist between me and my nearest tower, sure.

Range is one thing, and probably the easiest to fix (compare the failed WiMax attempt). However, there are other requirements that we make of the cellular system that WiFi also ignores, such as (off the top of my head): Hand over between cells in an orderly manner, service guarantees for voice calls, emergency service guarantees (even kicking out already ongoing call of lower priority), keeping track of where the mobile is in case of incoming calls, being able to do all this with mobiles that travel at high speed etc. etc.

When WiMax tried to solve the same problems, lo and behold, it didn't turn out any cheaper and simpler than the mobile systems and hence (as many of us predicted) it failed pretty miserably. Moving into the field dominated by telecoms it turned out that they already knew about how to do that well, and the WiMax people couldn't catch up (at least not cost effectively). The evolved 3G and 4G standards that were already in place, turned out to be much more successful.

Comment: Re:So there's 100 or so unimmunized? (Score 1) 387

by lars_stefan_axelsson (#47270081) Attached to: California Whooping Cough Cases "an Epidemic"

Just give it a rest already. You're spouting misinformation that's not helping anybody. But here we go again:

1. Never said flu shots had lots of egg in them, only that it's a risk factor, a well known one, with several allergic reactions to its name, though many/most people with an egg allergy can well tolerate a flu shot. The allergy is one of the reasons that there are now "egg free" flu vaccines available. Furthermore didn't say that most iatrogenically induced cases of anaphylaxis wasn't from something else. They are.

2. Re celiac disease. That's not the definition of an allergy. Your definition also fits other intolerances such as a bog standard lactose intolerance. But OK. If you won't believe me:

"Celiac disease differs from IgE-mediated food allergies in several important respects. Celiac disease is NOT mediated by allergen-specific antibodies including IgE. Celiac disease is a delayed hypersensitivity reaction where symptoms develop 48-72 hours after ingestion of the offending food which is in contrast to IgE-mediated food allergies where symptoms develop rather quickly (within minutes to hours after ingestion of the offending food)."

"Celiac disease does share some common features with IgE-mediated food allergies. Celiac disease is immunologically mediated, though not by antibodies. Celiac disease does affect only certain individuals in the population. And, most importantly, individuals with celiac disease must avoid the causative protein fraction, gluten, in their diets."


To reitterate. NOT AN ALLERGY! And if you can't get the basics right, why would anyone listen to you for any other advice when it comes to this area?

3. Wrong as well. But I'll let you do the googling.

4. The fact that RASTs are in general the most reliable are why they're used as a complement to all diagnoses of allergies. If you get a high response on a drug mediated allergy on a RAST test then it's very probable that you will respond negatively to that drug. But if you don't that's doesn't really clear you. There are relatively speaking fewer false positives, so they do have diagnostic value depending on the outcome. Now, since most people aren't allergic to anything, pure maths mean that doctors avoid them as they wouldn't make a very good screening tool. Once you get to an allergist though, you'll see them used a lot more. In general practice not so much.

5. Yeah, right...

Comment: Re:So there's 100 or so unimmunized? (Score 1) 387

by lars_stefan_axelsson (#47256545) Attached to: California Whooping Cough Cases "an Epidemic"

First of all, we were talking about drug and vaccine allergies.

OK, with you so far. Most of these aren't of course allergies against the vaccine as such, but to all the other components. (Flu vaccine being produced using chicken eggs being the most well known problem. They're often quite good at removing any traces of egg protein, but the process is by no means perfect, and for many sufferers getting the shot in a setting with emergency medical services to hand, as in "sitting on the chair right next to you" is often indicated. It's not for nothing that roughly 3/4 of all cases of anaphylaxis is iatrogenous.

Secondly, I specifically mentioned the different types of allergies possible INCLUDING the textbook example, celiac disease. Celiac disease absolutely IS an allergy, being a Type IV (delayed-type) hypersensitivity reaction which gives a specific set of GI symptoms in people who know they have the disorder.

No. Celiac disease is not an allergy per se. It is a specific autoimmune disease. One major difference between the two is that in autoimmune diseases the body's immune system attacks the body's own tissues, which is not a part of an allergy response. Allergies will not destroy your own tissues (though prolonged inflammation is of course no sinecure). Auto immune disease, (such as Celiac disease) will in many cases destroy tissue. In severe cases surgical intervention/removal of the tissue is indicated, and indeed loosing your intestine to the surgeons knife is a known complication of untreated Celiac disease. That's never the case with allergic reactions. (That's one difference, there are others).

The familial tendency towards allergy manifsts itself as asthma/atopy/allergic rhinitis, not with allergies to specific drugs or foods.

Never said it did. Read was I wrote again. What I did say is that allergic reactions in certain tissue has a hereditary component, i.e. respiratory vs. gastro intestinal. This connection is weaker though. In this case, the family had a supposed history of gastro intestinal involvement, so that's a point in favour of that hypothesis then.

Also you should know that the blood test (RAST) is absolutely worthless to determine if somebody is allergic to something if they have never been exposed to it before, such as for drugs.

Yes, and in this case the patient complained of symptoms after having taken the drug, which is an exposure. So what's your point? The main problem with these test are actually the opposite one. Just because you have been exposed and developed anti bodies that doesn't necessarily mean you'll have enough symptoms to qualify as "allergic" to that substance, especially when your counts of antibodies are low. Though, avoidance is currently thought to be indicated though there is currently a small but growing number of researchers that question this course of action. Time will tell.

Basic immunology such as that should have been covered in your general college biology classes

Ah! "There's your problem". We've moved quite a bit from what would be covered in basic biology. If that's what you're basing your understanding of allergies and allergic reactions on, you need to read up.

Comment: Re:Yawn (Score 1) 372

Why are you trying so hard to convince yourself it wasn't wrong by hiding reality?

I'm not convinced it was "wrong". I haven't made up my mind one way or the other (it's not that big a deal for me). But, from what I gather, he stepped down himself as his position became untenable within the company, not really because of outside pressure. And when it comes to political speech, that wasn't really the issue as such as I understand it, but rather his opinions on the matter and that he hasn't changed them.

Now, if you're saying that it was all because of the purported/planned consumer boycott then I'd like to know more about that as that's not what I've gathered at all.

In either case, we don't agree on the definition of "retaliation". But I'm not sure what the "spade a spade" would add to that, as surely we're not hung up on the word as such?

Comment: Re:Yawn (Score 1) 372

Aha. Is it just a question of semantics? I just looked it up (Cambridge Dictionary) and they define "Retaliate":

to hurt someone or do something harmful to someone because they have done or said something harmful to you

I can't see how refusing to work for someone for having a diametrically opposed views to you would fall under that heading.

Now if what you're saying is that we should be very careful to not let that be used as a cover for McCarthyism, then I'm with you all the way. But on the other hand, saying that (for instance) a black person would have to work for an boss that's a currently card carrying KKK aficionado is also a bit much, and calling that refusal "retaliation" also seems over the top.

Or to take another example, if you voting for a political opponent because you don't like your congressman's stance on an issue, would that be "retaliation" as well? In some cases what views you hold are very pertinent to the discussion. That's why it's almost certainly wrong to black list the janitor for being your least favourite -ist of the day, but when it comes to the CEO we're in a different league altogether. No?

Comment: Re:So there's 100 or so unimmunized? (Score 1) 387

by lars_stefan_axelsson (#47252783) Attached to: California Whooping Cough Cases "an Epidemic"

There are at least two things you wrote which are generally medically incorrect.

Well, but then again you didn't fair much better...

First of all, having only a stomach ache after ingesting a drug is very unlikely to be an allergy. True (IgE/T-cell-mediated) allergies usually cause things like hives, throat/lip/face swelling, low blood pressure, and trouble breathing.

No. Not even remotely true. Most food allergies do not lead to such severe symptoms as you list. In fact, that list of symptoms are clear warning signs that an anaphylactic shock is imminent, and you should prepare yourself accordingly. Most gastro intestinal allergies are much milder in symptoms, and can actually be difficult to diagnose as a result. And furthermore, most people with food borne allergies do not have serious symptoms from the rest of the body, with their gastro intestinal tract feeling A-OK. It's the other way around (with the exception of skin involvement, that's usually a greatly delayed response though).

So no "tell tale symptoms" unless the allergy was severe. Most are not. Which is a good thing since about 5% of the adult population suffer from some form of food borne allergy.

True allergies are generally not heritable either, so the "my relative was allergic to X, so I can't take it" is nonsense.

Could be argued technically correct, but that's the worst kind of correct. In fact, the tendency towards allergy is strongly hereditary and the same major organs also tend to stay involved, i.e. a family with gastro intestinal issues tend to have that passed on, and a family with respiratory involvement tend to have that passed on. (This is a weaker tendency though, hayfewer in both parents could well lead to a food allergy in their offspring).

The exception to this is in people who have things like celiac disease who have a T-cell-mediated response to gluten in the medication which is an allergy

Nope. Celiac disease is not an allergy. Completely different part of the immune system is involved in that one. (Well, OK, not "completely", but different enough.) It's quite possible to be allergic to many of the wheat proteins without suffering from celiac diseas, and vice versa (though wheat protein allergy is uncommon, and an allergic reaction to gluten as such, without celiac disease si extremely uncommon.)

That said, you are correct that people reporting an adverse reaction to some immunisation (flu being typical) are mistaking the effects of adjuvant factors that are added to the vaccine to give it better punch. In fact, they're there to strengthen the immune response (which makes you feel sick). That's nott to say that you cannot be allergic to shots and what's in them. It's not for nothing that about 3/4 of all anaphylactic shocks happen at the doctor. They're the ones injecting stuff into you.

And also, due to the base-rate fallacy/class imbalance problem it is actually less likely that the grandparent is allergic to opioid than having any of the other well known reactions. Checking for that is as easy as getting a blood sample and check for antibodies (a test that has a fair, but not perfect record), so since knowing about an allergy of that nature could be very useful (lest one gets a shot of morphine during e.g. a car accident) getting that test done would probably be a good idea.

Comment: Re:So there's 100 or so unimmunized? (Score 1) 387

by lars_stefan_axelsson (#47252735) Attached to: California Whooping Cough Cases "an Epidemic"

Absolutely true! But, uh... "tummy ache" ain't one of them. Not even with really bad puking and diarrhea. Sorry.

If you're saying that a "tummy ache" couldn't be a symptom of a food allergy. That's simply not true.

In fact, that's one of the foremost symptoms of a food allergy. And the next step is indeed often "really bad puking" sometimes followed by "diarrhoea" (but that's typically a delayed reaction). A sore itchy throat is often the first sign though, but with something you take in small amounts and that is masked by other material (such as a small pill) that's not necessarily the case.

Your body have mast cells spread in many places, mostly in the mucous membranes, and they can actually be triggered both from the outside and from the inside. That's where the anaphylactic shock originates from typically, i.e. the proteins you're reacting to were introduced by some other route (typically gastro intestinal or intravenous).

So it's quite common for those suffering from food allergies (about 5% of the population) to have various gastro intestinal symptoms. Now, since these are general in nature, it can be difficult to make the correct differential diagnosis in milder cases, the obvious other culprits being some sort of intolerance (e.g. Lactos intolerance) which are not allergic in nature, or other auto immune diseases (such as Chrons or Celiac disease) which aren't allergies either.

In more severe cases though, it's quite clear what's going on with an existing allergy diagnosis, and time to pull out the adrenaline shot. (Which I've thankfully only had to do once, knock on wood). And there will most definitely be puking. Lots of it.

Comment: Re:Yawn (Score 1) 372

Taking action that has influence or conseqiences to someone else because of their past political speech is retaliation no matter how you define it.

Wouldn't that depend on whether they still hold the same beliefs? Has he publicly recanted? Sure, times may change, but isn't there a difference between those that change with them, and those that steadfastly refuse? (For the better and the worse, of course, not all change is obviously an improvement in they eyes of all people.)

Yes, there was also a "campaign" external to Mozilla, but let's ignore that for now and focus on what the parent puts the finger on, namely the employees that would work under him. Don't they have a right to say "No, won't do that. Those views are too far from my own"?

The degree of technical confidence is inversely proportional to the level of management.