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Comment: Perception dominated the ... (Score 1) 540

by niftymitch (#48428695) Attached to: "Barbie: I Can Be a Computer Engineer" Pulled From Amazon

Perception dominated the knee jerk reaction.

In my experience modern computers and operating systems
are beyond any one person knowing all the answers.

I recall working with an astoundingly clever and smart network type
that was tasked with tuning the lowest nasty bits of the network
stack. However he had no experience in setting a machine up
and installing a base system and adding initial users so he could
test what he was doing.

Same is true for a lady hardware designer. A true wizard at termination
of very high speed transmission lines and world class in coding VHDL
to eliminate random TTL logic on a board... Again the random decisions
made for setting up a user could not be deduced from raw logic....

The toy company should have had an ethnic and gender mixed help desk.
But that does not give the foolish critics a free ride.

Comment: Re:Never mind that Steve Jobs was not gay (Score 1) 430

Evidently gay is highly contagious. Scientists say it's not airborne, but some of them have got it, so there's obviously a lot they don't know about how gay is spread. It stands to reason we should do everything we an think of to reduce the public exposure to gay.

I can see the global angst now as a current US president sits down
in front of a fireplace with a handful of trusted but silent aids to reassure
the nation and the world that "gay" is not contagious if you wear
head to toe protective....

Then in less than a week he or she imports a word like tzar from Russia
to explain it all.....

Comment: Does it run Android? (Score 1) 1

by niftymitch (#48305941) Attached to: New Clock May End Time As We Know It

I was hoping this was a new Android wrist watch.
Sadly it was not when I looked at the original article.

Sill it is cool as heck.... Recall the palmdale bulge that might have
been a 10cm uplift of the bed rock. This could measure this...

An array of these clocks in well chosen places might tell us a lot
about this little blue ball we live on.

Since this is the first week after some of the globe flipped off Daylight Savings Time
it is obvious to me that the old WWV radio controlled clocks are so last year.
I would like to see some NTP-WiFi + WWV + GPS clock designs. Perhaps with
better displays than the current pile of fixed 7 segment type display.

Cool as heck... but I doubt I can afford one today.

+ - Ebola and the War of the Worlds->

Submitted by niftymitch
niftymitch (1625721) writes "Compare and contrast todays news coverage on Ebola and the topic of the upcoming PBS special replay:
War of the Worlds
Aired: 10/29/2013 52:10 Rating: NR
Shortly after 8 p.m. on the Halloween Eve, 1938, a panicked radio announcer broke in with a report that Martians had landed in the tiny town of Grovers Mill, New Jersey. Although most listeners understood that the program was a radio drama, the next day's headlines reported that thousands of others plunged into panic. It turned out to be H.G. Wells' The War of the Worlds performed by Orson Welles."

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:On the other hand... (Score 1) 700

by niftymitch (#48215999) Attached to: FTDI Reportedly Bricking Devices Using Competitors' Chips.

If they work, I don't care. The scumbags bricking devices are the problem.

There are a couple dirtbags here.
First the math:
Three dirtbags does not equal a scumbag.

The initial dirtbag would be the clowns that made parts that reported that
they were a different part but not also acted differently but were a lame
subset of the original. Fraud on the data sheet or marking on the part
is worthy of prosecution.

The second dirtbag is FTDI that can effectively disable a vastly more extensive and
expensive device and deny the purchaser that did nothing wrong and has no possibility
of auditing the content of the device they purchased.

The third dirtbag is the vendor that knowingly uses a less costly part or the distributor
that delivers a less costly part knowing or turning a blind eye to the fact that the
alternate part is a sad knockoff.

Counterfeiters are a real problem and in the modern age of 3D printing
are likely to find another media to abuse.

I dislike the strategy taken by FTDI it attacks the end user and risks others -- furthest from the fraud
and least likely to know or be able to know anything about the abuse of the trespassing on FTDI's
design intellectual property.

Comment: Re:That works fine if you manage to nip it in the (Score 1) 381

by niftymitch (#48171879) Attached to: How Nigeria Stopped Ebola

Do not forget that the EPA shut the incinerators off in these hospitals.

As for the dozen or so high isolation beds in the US that FoX and others wants
all patients to be sent to... Oh wait there are many in isolation and only
13 beds... 1,2,3, many... none can count high enough for sure.

The way to think about these 13 beds is that they are 13 lab rat cages.
Not designed for anything beyond experimental access to astoundingly
ill individuals.

Comment: Flat footed a bit. (Score 1) 478

by niftymitch (#48166373) Attached to: The CDC Is Carefully Controlling How Scared You Are About Ebola

The CDC is a bureaucratic machine.
It has a US centric view... it does not have a global charter.
It does watch for things outside the US but depends on others.

They seem to be almost flat footed on this. Had the folk in
Texas not stumbled they would look good. The folk in Texas did
step on it and now are trying to catch up.

If they had done their job and the politicians done their day job
we would have seen Governors, Mayors, President Obama formally
introduce experts then sit down and listen. However they wanted
camera time, they wanted to be in charge and here we go.

Early on I had a question about Ebola and because I could I submitted
a question that took a day to frame (unlike this 40 second /.). A week
later I got a reply... that was in effect "good question, we do not have
an answer today, we will and here is where you need to look.
Very responsible, very organized but navigates like three oil tankers
and two aircraft carriers tied together with half a million rolls of duct
tape. Slow ponderous relentless... comes to mind. Something about
five captains and a couple dozen tug boat captains applies too.

I went looking for my favorite kitchen rubber gloves today at my
favorite big box shop.... None. Like bottled water after the Napa
quake they have apparently been shipped to high demand locations like Texas
and I hope Africa. There were still gloves that work fine but not
my favorite type in the large economy box. Lots of them at the
local flu shot clinic today so the medical community here is golden.

I should give the important SUMMARY:
My meatloaf smushing and habanero slicing is still safe.

Comment: Re:No the constitution is fine.. (Score 1) 279

by niftymitch (#48143869) Attached to: Who's In Charge During the Ebola Crisis?

As scary as Ebola is it may not qualify as an emergency we have
common problems from influenza, food poisoning, pneumonia that
kill more...

Wait, the flu, food poisoning and pneumonia kill 70% of those infected!?

WTF, why didnt you start telling us all that beforehand! This is a global catastrophe!!! Once the flu season hits again, billions of people are gong to die! BILLIONS!

FUCK, the end of civilization is less than a year away! What are we going to do!? ...oh wait a this for real, or are you talking absolute shit and know figuratively nothing about ebola and its previous outbreaks?

Please let me know, so I can decide whether to start planning for the end of the world or not.

In one case we have tens of thousands infected and in the other case we have (today) less than a dozen in the US.
70% is nasty but 70% of a dozen small compared to the thousands of fatalities associated with influenza alone.

My point is that if we diminish the impact of viral infections we know how to manage we would free up
staff to address Ebola correctly. Todays news noted that there had been 5000 false alarms.
The same news noted that it takes 20 trained professionals to care for a patient in full quarantine.
If Ebola and influenza+49 others get mixed at the intake of hospitals to the point that all influenza and food poisoning
cases require twenty professionals for 48-72 hours our system will crumble.

Since sanitation is the common best tool society at large has at its disposal... and since
hand washing is low cost, requires minimum training and has good impact to the larger problem
I believe it is an important and necessary activity to encourage.

Time for me to wash my hands and go and give blood.

Comment: No the constitution is fine.. (Score 2) 279

by niftymitch (#48137005) Attached to: Who's In Charge During the Ebola Crisis?

"general welfare" as part of the spending power section is all that congress
needs to craft well considered laws.

Federal agencies could be funded to establish top level technical resources.
States could then move forward.

Emergencies open doors as well....

As scary as Ebola is it may not qualify as an emergency we have
common problems from influenza, food poisoning, pneumonia that
kill more...

However congress could declare Ebola in Africa and others problems
as a health risk to the US and fund emergency actions.

My gut reaction is if citizens were to take personal responsibility
and act on all the common influenza, food handling, common cold
basic sanitation programs Ebola would vanish only to be found in
footnotes referencing a small number of individuals and hospitals in
the US. Sadly Africa is still behind the eight ball in this disaster.