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Comment: Re:Collusion (Score 1) 1186

by slughead (#28094895) Attached to: US To Require That New Cars Get 42 MPG By 2016

CO2 throws the existing system out of whack. We don't know by how much - most estimates are pretty pessimistic, though even the optimistic ones aren't exactly reassuring.

Here's an optimistic estimate: CO2 has NO significant impact on temperatures.

There's no data to suggest otherwise.

So far all I've seen (and I've looked, trust me) is "If CO2 does X, then THIS will happen"... Well please, for the love of G_d, where $#!@ did you get X from??

Find me that, I might believe you.

Comment: Re:Number 1 AUS killer (Score 1) 213

by slughead (#27821573) Attached to: Merck Created Phony Peer-Review Medical Journal

>Now, how many asprin are sold?

The only reason Vioxx existed was because aspirin is the absolute king of stomach bleeding--something which Vioxx and Celebrex don't do (theoretically at least).

Stomach bleeding can kill. So can many of the other things aspirin does. Does the relative risk of death compare unfavorably to that of Vioxx (which contributes to stroke and MI)? We don't know.

Why don't we know? Well you can't compare Vioxx users to the general population because they're generally more overweight. Obesity is a huge contributor to joint pain--which is the main thing Vioxx was prescribed for. Obesity is also a major contributor to stroke and MI. However, when it goes to court, every person on Vioxx who has a MI automatically assumes it's because of Vioxx, even though that's impossible, given that the rate of MI is not that different from the overall population (even given the skewed numbers, like I mentioned before).

There's a reason why Merck stated that they would fight every case tooth and nail: it's because the drug is actually fairly safe, and the media hyped it to death because they hate the drug companies.

Do I think Aspirin should be by prescription only? No, I'm just saying: Aspirin IS MORE DANGEROUS than many prescription drugs--we've proven it! We have the numbers! The only reason it's OTC is because it was Grandfathered in.

I mean, if Nexium caused Renal failure and stomach bleeding at the rates Aspirin does, it'd be taken off the market in no time.

I also find it funny I was modded as "troll" for simply stating a company has the right to advertise about its products (as long as they're honest). As far as I'm concerned, if you don't like the way the drug companies do business, you can boycott and buy generic. If you absolutely must have the latest and greatest drugs, then you can kiss the butt of the company that spent millions (billions?) of dollars creating and testing the product for you. Don't think of it in terms of right and wrong, think of it in terms of necessity: There is no other way to get the drugs you need coming out at the frequency you want without profit incentive.

Comment: No Concept Of Drugs (Score 1, Troll) 213

by slughead (#27806217) Attached to: Merck Created Phony Peer-Review Medical Journal

"Aspirin is good medicine."

NSAIDS like aspirin kill way more people per year than Vioxx ever could (7,600 yearly).

If aspirin were going through the FDA today, it would never get approved as OTC. It aggravates asthma, inhibits blood clotting, and if you give it to a kid with a fever, there's a chance they can get something called Reye's syndrome--where their brain and liver are attacked. It can cause permanent brain damage! Especially in infants!

People have no concept of how safe or unsafe drugs really are. Just because they're by prescription doesn't mean they're that dangerous, and just because they're over the counter doesn't mean they're safe. The FDA sucks.

As for Merck inventing a shill magazine to sell their products, I don't see any problem with that, so long as they tell the truth.

The slashdot stub says that Merck's robot publication states that Fosamax performs better than alternatives. That's factual information! What's the problem?

Comment: Re:Newspeak framing (Score 1) 164

by slughead (#27627057) Attached to: NSA Overstepped the Law On Wiretaps

"one official" -- makes the following sound like an "official" statement without anyone putting their name on the line. Who is the official?

And yet the headline seems to imply Obama's being tough on government abuses. If I were more cynical, I'd say this whole NSA smackdown is a sacrificial lamb to show he's "pro-civil liberties" after all, even though his administration recently won the warrantless wiretap case.

Again, if I were cynical, I'd also say the media is eating it up. (on a related note)

Comment: Re:Frogs in boiling water (Score 1) 236

by slughead (#27118083) Attached to: Verizon Wants To Share Your Personal Information

It was thanks to Ronald Reagan

That's right. Greedy politicians and powerful corporations didn't exist till the 1980's.

I suppose you'd have to ignore the Railroads of the 1860's which were practically made a branch of government by Abraham Lincoln. Oh, and the car companies in the 1950's... oh, I forgot about TWA, the phone companies, and yes, even bananas...

I'd really like to live in a world where all we have to fix are laws and not human nature.

Comment: Re:So we've got a duopoly (Score 1) 647

by slughead (#26801547) Attached to: WSJ Says Gov't Money Injection Won't Help Broadband

[paraphrased] Corps were given 200B to lay line and they never did!

if you look at the legislative history of the 200 billion, there is simply no basis for jailing anybody.

That's the thing that bugs me the most (looking at GP post): with Government subsidy, things always go awry, and it's always business that gets blamed. Rarely do people ever blame government when money is wasted in this way. It's always the agribusiness (farm subsidies), or the telecoms (1990's), or Haliburton (Iraq war), or the car manufacturers (bailed out in the 80's and again recently), or the banks (current bailout). Nobody ever seems to blame government for wasting the cash in the first place, even though this happens most of the time with subsidy. If you pay people to waste money, three guesses as to what they're going to do?

Comment: Re:Not the end by a longshot (Score 1) 230

by slughead (#26390809) Attached to: RIAA Gives Up In Atlantic Recording v. Brennan

I'm getting a little tired of the relentless bashing of the guy a genuine majority of the country elected. Where were you asstards when Bush "won" with less than 49% of the voters?

No. Less than 30% of people in the US went to the polls and voted for Obama. Even if he'd gotten more than 50%, that hardly means I'm not allowed to ridicule him. That would mean you weren't allowed to complain about Bush after he won by over 50% (of voters) in 2004.

Comment: Re:It's hush money (Score 1) 90

by slughead (#26214597) Attached to: With Lawsuit Settled, Hackers Working With MBTA

Their goals are unknown, so it's not anyone's place to assume. However, the traditional hacker motive has been to discover how a (often closed) system works, figure out if there are any defects, and share the information gained with other hackers and the public. Hackers of all walks (including and perhaps especially open source developers) have a natural distaste for technology whose details are intentionally hidden from them.

You watch too many movies. Finding an exploit in something is exciting, and equally exciting is reporting your findings to others and making a name for yourself.

Also, your bit about how hackers have a "distaste for hidden details" is BS: why the heck would they care? Are they righteous do-gooders in the unending quest for truth? Closed, proprietary, systems are usually secretive because they know they've got something to hide. That's the only reason hackers focus so much on them--not because they have a moral imperative to seek the truth, but because they know that's where the juiciest exploits are.

Hackers end up being great for society in that they hack for fun recognition and not for a more evil purpose. Through their own self-interest they end up being a positive force. I would much rather have someone like Kevin Mitnick hack the pentagon before China does. That's not to say I respect why he does it.

Comment: Re:Solution: Public Key Auth (Score 1) 327

by slughead (#26197175) Attached to: The Slow Bruteforce Botnet(s) May Be Learning

Since changing my SSH ports to something really high (above 50000)

Because they were really going to portscan you anyway. I bet putting at 23 (as opposed to the default) would be almost as effective.

At a web message board I setup, I used some popular software and was getting a ton of spam bots. So I added a simple "are you a human" question--no captcha or anything, just another checkbox to check... Not 1 single piece of spam. Same principle: the bots aren't that smart--you avoid the norms even by a little, and you're okay.

Security

+ - Judge Strikes Down Patriot Act ISP/Telco Tap->

Submitted by slughead
slughead (592713) writes "A PC World article posted September 6 states that Judge Victor Marrero, of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York has struck down the Dept. Of Justices ability to utilize National Security Letters to gain access to customer records from ISPs and phone companies. National Security Letters (NSL's) are essentially 'self-written warrants' as described by former Judge Andrew Napolitano in this Cato Institute meeting (20:40). As a side note, the ability to write these NSL's to get documents was expanded to include hotels, casinos, restaurants, bodegas, lawyers' offices, real estate agents offices, and the POST OFFICE by the Foreign Intelligence Authorization Act, signed December 14, 2003. This act allows the government to read your postal mail without a warrant and without your knowledge."
Link to Original Source
Education

Freeing the Good Stuff From University Labs 87

Posted by kdawson
from the window-into-research dept.
netbuzz writes "University research labs are not supposed to be like Vegas: What happens in them is not supposed to stay there. A nonprofit from the Kauffman Innovation Network launching yesterday at DEMO 07 aims to free the fruits of academic research that would otherwise sit trapped on university shelves. Bonus: the site translates academic-speak into English.
Biotech

+ - Protien in HIV functions as resistor

Submitted by
TwilightXaos
TwilightXaos writes "Leor Weinberger and Thomas Shenk, two researchers at Princeton, have discovered a new model for how the HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) enters and exits dormancy. They claim it functions as a resistor, this is in contrast to other types of regulation models found in other viruses and animals. From the abstract:

Here we show that a dissipative feedback resistor, composed of enzymatic interconversion of the transactivator, converts transactivation circuits into excitable systems that generate transient pulses of expression, which decay to zero. We use HIV-1 as a model system and analyze single-cell expression kinetics to explore whether the HIV-1 transactivator of transcription (Tat) uses a resistor to shut off transactivation. The Tat feedback circuit was found to lack bi-stability and Tat self-cooperativity but exhibited a pulse of activity upon transactivation, all in agreement with the feedback resistor model.

The research could lead to an effective treatment of the HIV virus, and has the possibility of increasing understanding of other viruses like herpes.
Additionally hindu.com has a article on the findings."

ASHes to ASHes, DOS to DOS.

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