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Comment: Different Issue (Score 3, Insightful) 468

by sycodon (#49630089) Attached to: The Medical Bill Mystery

This issue is something not addressed by Obamacare and is actually completely different from the question of how people get insurance.

One of the fundamental flaws in the old and current system is that it is completely opaque as far as costs go. People needing non-emergency care have no way to determine which provider has the best prices and what they will be charged for. It's like buying a car..you get one price from the Salesman but when you get back into the finance office, you have all this other crap added on that you aren't sure you need or even what it is.

Until this crap is straightened out, consumers will never be able to make informed choices and the people paying the bills, insurance companies or government, will never really know what they are paying for.

Fix this and you are a long way towards a better solution for all involved.

Comment: Re:Wrong point. (Score 1) 173

by sycodon (#49628753) Attached to: The World's Most Wasteful Megacity

You go ahead and live in your little 1000stft apartments, riding on filthy subways, walking in the heat and the rain from the station to your work/home, getting mugged (by the cops or the bad guys), never really seeing the sun, etc.

I'll stay in my 2,400 sqft home, with deer in the back yard, a nice greenbelt in the neighborhood (where you don't get mugged), the smell of wildflowers, a 10 minute commute (5 minutes to the grocery store), and low crime.

Comment: Re:Defense of the Article (Score 1) 412

by eldavojohn (#49620497) Attached to: The Programming Talent Myth

So there could be two groups, those who look to improve their skill, who quickly distance themselves from the group that doesn't. Of course, there will still be wide variance in skill between the members of each group. I'm sure you can think of other ways it could happen.

No, I can't. I started out and I sucked. I got better eventually through experience. In order for it to be truly bimodal, people have to start in either camp A or camp B and end in the same camp they started in. Because if you transition from one to another over time, any point in time will capture a group of people in between the modes. Now, you can argue that people don't spend much time in between those modes but you haven't presented any evidence for that. What's more likely is you have geocities coders on one tail and John Carmack/Linus Torvolds on the other tail. And in between are people like the presenter and I. And since I'm not instantaneously going from bad to good, the reality of the situation is most likely some degree of a normal curve filled with people trying to get better at programming or even just getting better though spending lots of time doing it and learning a little along the way.

For all your attacks on the presenter, your argument of a bi-modal distribution sounds more flawed to me. I would love to see your study and hear your argument.

+ - Recent Paper Shows Fracking Chemicals in Drinking Water, Industry Attacks It->

Submitted by eldavojohn
eldavojohn writes: A recent paper published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences turned up 2-Butoxyethanol from samples collected from three households in Pennsylvania. The paper's level headed conclusion is that more conservative well construction techniques should be used to avoid this in the future and that flowback should be better controlled. Rob Jackson, another scientist who reviewed the paper, stressed that the findings were an exception to normal operations. Despite that, the results angered the PR gods of the Marcellus Shale Gas industry and awoke beltway insider mouthpieces to attack the research — after all, what are they paying them for?
Link to Original Source

Comment: Defense of the Article (Score 1) 412

by eldavojohn (#49619837) Attached to: The Programming Talent Myth

This guy doesn't know how to measure programming ability, but somehow manages to spend 3000 words writing about it.

To be fair, you can spend a great deal of time talking about something and make progress on the issue without solving it.

For example the current metrics are abysmal so it's worth explaining why they're abysmal. I just was able to delete several thousand lines of JavaScript from one of my projects after a data model change (through code reuse and generalization) -- yet I increased functionality. My manager was confused and thought it was a bad thing to get rid of code like that ... it was absolute dopamine bliss to me while he felt like our production was being put in reverse. KLOC is a terrible metric. But yet we still need to waste a lot of breath explaining why it's a terrible metric.

Another reason to waste a lot of time talking about a problem without reaching an answer is to elaborate on what the known unknowns are and speculate about the unknown unknowns. Indeed, the point of this article seemed to be to advertise the existence of unknown unknowns to "recruiters, venture capitalists, and others who are actually determining who gets brought into the community."

So he doesn't know......programmer ability might actually be a bi-modal distribution.

Perhaps ... but that would imply that one does not transition over time from one hump to the next or if they do, it's like flipping a light switch. When I read this I assumed that he was talking only about people who know how to program and not "the average person mixed in with programmers."

If he had collected data to support his hypothesis, then that would have been an interesting article.

But you just said there's no way to measure this ... how could he have collected data? What data set could have satiated us? The answer is quite obvious and such collection would have been a larger fool's errand than the original article's content.

Comment: Re:Tech Savvy (Score 1) 541

by techno-vampire (#49618391) Attached to: Recruiters Use 'Digital Native' As Code For 'No Old Folks'
they take most shit and are happy eating it.

One of the big reasons they're happy to eat it is that they haven't learned yet (some of them never do) that they don't have to take that kind of treatment and that good managers don't need to treat their subordinates that way. And, of course, there's also the fact that there are lots of other kids out there trying to get their foot in the door making them easily replaceable and bad managers know how to play on their understandable insecurity.

Comment: Re:Bad title (Score 3, Insightful) 405

by sycodon (#49616413) Attached to: No, NASA Did Not Accidentally Invent Warp Drive

The scientists didn't say anything about a warp drive. They did say the other stuff, as did two other independent teams.

Honestly, it reminds me of fucking managers losing their shit when they inquire about the status of a large project and hear something they didn't expect to hear.

These guys simply reported what they observed and people are losing their shit over it.

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