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Comment Hearkens back to when kids were prepared (Score 1) 606 606

The way university curriculum is set up, at least in the hard sciences and engineering paths, expects that those who enroll in those programs have done some legwork on their own and are actually interested in the material. I don't think anything needs to change. As it is, college is already becoming a forum to teach kids what they should have learned in High School but didn't. Less reliance on college for kids who really don't need it is the answer, not dumbing down the curriculum. I dare say much of the folks who enroll in college would be better off at a trade school or two-year tech school.

Comment Sweet Innocence (Score 1) 386 386

Ahh, sweet innocence. Hackers have acquired the personal data of at least 20 million folks. This is a bad thing, for sure. The chances are pretty good, however, that your personal data is already in the possession of one or more malicious computer users. Hell, the Chinese government probably has your social security number and favorite brand of toothpaste on file somewhere. This is just one incident among the countless numbers that go unreported every day. Don't fool yourself into thinking this one breach is the only reason hackers may have your phone number and favorite playmate.

Comment Re:Nope (Score 1) 336 336

This doesn't address the real question here, though. Does the drop in price per Mbps match the drop in price for other "hi-tech" gadgets. They're attempting to index the cost of broadband internet so the price trends can be established. If we look over a 10-year time period, processors, per moore's law, will have 32 times more transistors and be correspondingly (in theory, give me a break guys...) more powerful and efficient at computing. If we compare processors in a similar price-class, we'd expect a 32-fold increase in computing power today over those from a decade ago. Has broadband in the same price-class increased in efficiency by the same amount? If not, why not?

Comment Re:What's the point? (Score 0, Redundant) 853 853

As others have said, it's almost certainly a CYA move on Gizmodo's part. I'd also like to add that Apple already had to have known who owned the phone. In the original story Gizmodo mentioned it had been remotely wiped. That means the hapless employee had to have reported the loss of the phone.

Comment Re:Call the It Dept! (Score 1) 210 210

Hehe... my favorite moment while working in my college's Help Desk center for IT support for faculty, staff, and students... There was this virus embedded in an email with a subject along the lines of, "See what the 7 Dwarfs got Snow White for her 18th Birthday." I personally cleaned the virus off three professors' desktops, and we had at least a dozen cases overall. Mysteriously, the professors were always out of their office when we came to clean up their PCs...

Comment Re:Perish the thought? (Score 1) 532 532

I was actually underwhelmed by Avatar (I know I'll get burned for saying that...) *because* of the obvious layering. From the way the 3-d technology was talked up, I was (foolishly) expecting smooth gradients of depth. Instead, it felt to me like an iteratively improved version of Jaws 3D tech with flat planes of depth layered on each other, just more of them, and with better visual effects.

Comment Re:Gold cure sickness (Score 0, Flamebait) 97 97

Oh, I see, you prefer to do all your own original research rather than trying to find folks who do a good job of combing over the research themselves, I'm sorry. Please, feel free to enlighten me by showing me how government control of anything increases supply of it. I'll only accept original applications though, no plagiarism now!

Command and control economies lead to scarcity, a fact born out repeatedly in history. Extreme examples in today's world are Cuba, North Korea, and China. Anyway, you asked about rationing, I provided a paper that points out, "Measured in units per million, the United States experiences levels of availability up to three times greater than in Canada and Germany," for basic life saving technologies like open heart surgery and radiation therapy. Rather than foam at the mouth, perhaps you could provide evidence that refutes this?

Comment Re:Gold cure sickness (Score 1) 97 97

I linked this in another post here, but this is a good look at funding and availability structures and, yes, rationing, under government run health care systems:

Europe is burdened by its historical commitment to expanding entitlement with the result that HTA is increasingly performed with cost-containment in mind. Interest in HTA in Europe and Canada has increased because of the need to justify expenditure on technology, particularly where countries lack their own domestic pharmaceutical industry, and because the combined pressures of ageing populations and more demanding consumers are exerting cost pressures on governments at the very same moment as the tax base is shrinking or static.

Where consumers in the US have a wide range of drugs available to them European consumers are far more restricted in their choice. Although countries with nationalised health services believe that their healthcare systems prioritise the interest of citizens, HTA is in fact used as a precursor to supply-side restrictions on pricing and reimbursement.

Comment Re:Gold cure sickness (Score 1) 97 97

Let's start with the anecdotal -- more Americans have won the Nobel prize for Medicine than any other ethnicity:

Here's a great analysis by the Heritage Foundation regarding where increased costs are coming from with regards to paying for health care:

Here's a good paper that looks at research priorities in different countries, among other things:
Among other things, they conclude:

Where consumers in the US have a wide range of drugs available to them European consumers are far more restricted in their choice. Although countries with nationalised health services believe that their healthcare systems prioritise the interest of citizens, HTA is in fact used as a precursor to supply-side restrictions on pricing and reimbursement.

Here are some other good articles:

Comment Re:Gold cure sickness (Score 1) 97 97

Then explain to me the rationing that occurs in every nation with socialized health care? There never seems to be enough of other people's money (aka - taxes) to pay enough. The answer always seems to be that not enough money is being spent, yet despite ballooning costs, no nation has yet solved the problem. America still serves as the emergency room for the wealthy who can afford to get cutting edge treatments, and America still makes most major medical and drug breakthroughs. I don't know about you, but this tells me we may be doing something right, and maybe we should do more of that, instead of following the failed example of socialized, government mandated and funded healthcare.

Comment Re:Gold cure sickness (Score 1) 97 97

Free healthcare and free food are free as in beer -- someone somewhere has to eat the cost of it. Even 'free' when it comes to computing is rarely really free... When we run out of other people's money to spend on things, well, then your free healthcare and free food are going to suck.

How many surrealists does it take to screw in a lightbulb? One to hold the giraffe and one to fill the bathtub with brightly colored power tools.