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Comment: Re:Nope (Score 1) 252

by starless (#49098957) Attached to: No Tech Bubble Here, Says CNN: "This Time It's Different."

The difference here is that Uber has a product. A vile, rent-seeking product built on the corpse of the American Middle Class, but a product nontheless. .

I'm finding Uber increasingly useful, as so do an increasing number of people I know who live in cities.
The drivers also seem pretty happy when you talk to them.
So, I think you're overstating how bad Uber is overall. And they may even (with luck)
have a positive role to play in making cities easier to get around and so reducing the
need for cars.

Comment: Re:They are both disconnected from reality (Score 3, Insightful) 148

by starless (#49054791) Attached to: Report: Samsung Replacing Its Apps With Microsoft's For Galaxy S6

Can't read past the headline?

The bigger message that Samsung is going to make most of the bloatware uninstallable and optionally downloadable has been completely ignored here.

- The details are still unknown as this is essentially still just a rumor.
- The article says it appears that the Samsung apps are going to be optionally downloadable.
But it is unclear whether the MS apps that replace them will be removable/downloadable, or whether those will work the same way as the current Samsung apps do. (i.e. not able to remove without rooting phone.)

Comment: Re:The biggest failure of science: (Score 1) 200

by starless (#48981481) Attached to: Too Much Exercise May Not Be Better Than a Sedentary Lifestyle

And do not state the size of the effect.

Well, they do quote the size of the effect in the abstract. And the results clearly have no statistical "power".
This is part of the abstract. HR = hazard ratio. i.e. the relative ratio of dying for the joggers compared to the non-joggers.
And CI is a confidence interval. e.g. For the light joggers they can say with 95% statistical certainty that the risk of dying was
between 10% and 47% of the non-joggers.

The lowest HR for mortality was found in light joggers (HR: 0.22; 95% CI: 0.10 to 0.47), followed by moderate joggers (HR: 0.66; 95% CI: 0.32 to 1.38) and strenuous joggers (HR: 1.97; 95% CI: 0.48 to 8.14).

But see that for the strenuous joggers the range can be anywhere between 50% of the non-joggers death rate to 8x the death rate.
So, really nothing at all can be said about anything apart from either the light joggers, or considering all joggers together.
For those groups there is a benefit at the 95% confidence level.
(And, as a physicist, I don't really consider any result to be worth much at such a low level.)

Comment: Re:Thus confirming existing opinions: (Score 1) 96

by starless (#48946933) Attached to: ESA: No Conclusive Evidence of Big Bang Gravitational Waves

Of course, if you're being a real scientist, presumably you don't announce spectacular results till they've been peer-reviewed....

And even more than just announcing a non-reviewed piece of work, they went overboard with the hype it seems to me,
including the highly-staged video they made of arriving at Andre Linde's house and telling him the result:

Comment: Re:Not much aperture (Score 1) 19

by starless (#48822319) Attached to: Exoplanet Hunting NGTS Telescope Array Achieves First Light

I wonder what the real step forward is (field of view? accuracy? software?), because that is not much aperture. 1.5 square meters in all, compared to 6 square meters on Kepler and 18 square meters on Hubble.

The collecting area of HST is ~4.5 m^2. (2.4/2)^2 x pi
Collecting area of Kepler is ~0.7 m^2

You also have to consider e.g. field of view and observation durations for use in planet searches.

Comment: Re:Study pinpoints "lazy" authors too (Score 1) 53

by starless (#48575677) Attached to: Study of Massive Preprint Archive Hints At the Geography of Plagiarism

I work a lot with data from astronomy satellites. A lot of the first steps of the analysis, and describing the spacecraft
and its instruments are very close to the same from paper to paper of mine. (And similarly for other people doing similar
work.) This results in a lot of near (and sometimes exact) duplication of text. However, I believe this is still valid
and necessary. The heart of the paper - i.e. the new results and conclusions - does still differ of course!

Comment: Re:Tesla wasn't the target, it was China (Score 4, Insightful) 256

by starless (#48208603) Attached to: Michigan Latest State To Ban Direct Tesla Sales

I can't justify two cars, and if I own a car, it has to be able to drive 1000 miles in a day.

If you routinely have to drive so far then an electric wouldn't work for you.
However, if driving long distances is rare then an electric plus occasional rental (e.g. zip) ought to work.

Comment: Re:Cochrane review of red-light camera studies (Score 1) 398

by starless (#48195227) Attached to: Speed Cameras In Chicago Earn $50M Less Than Expected

And a Cochrane review of speed cameras concludes:

The quality of the included studies in this review was judged as being of overall moderate quality at best, however, the consistency of reported positive reductions in speed and crash results across all studies show that speed cameras are a worthwhile intervention for reducing the number of road traffic injuries and deaths. To affirm this finding, higher quality studies, using well designed controlled trials where possible, and studies conducted over adequate length of time (including lengthy follow-up periods) with sufficient data collection points, both before and after the implementation of speed cameras, are needed.

"It's when they say 2 + 2 = 5 that I begin to argue." -- Eric Pepke