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Comment: Re:The difference between Ubur and all the others. (Score 1) 66

by Kohath (#48656951) Attached to: Uber Pushing For Patent On Surge Pricing

Once people realize they're paying more than conventional cabs, they'll be gone.

If so, it's a self-correcting problem. If not, customers must be satisfied with Uber's service and pricing. Either way, there's no reason for anyone besides Uber and Uber's customers to be involved in the decision.

Comment: Re:Detect price gouging (Score 1) 66

by Kohath (#48656915) Attached to: Uber Pushing For Patent On Surge Pricing

Why should you get a first-class airline seat just because you are rich? Because you're willing to pay the amount it costs. Do you also want to ban eBay auctions? Why should people be able to buy what they want on eBay just because they are the high bidder?

Please cite an instance when this was banned somewhere and it caused good things. Until you do, I will assert that such a ban has never achieved a single positive result anywhere.

Comment: Re:Detect price gouging (Score 1) 66

by Kohath (#48656787) Attached to: Uber Pushing For Patent On Surge Pricing

That should lure every driver, including drivers who are tired, or distant, or taking a day off, out onto the roads to serve the people who need rides. When people need a ride, that's when you want drivers to have a big incentive to provide them.

If it's too expensive for you, either wait or find another way. Then someone else who needs it more or values it more can get a ride. Why should you get a ride ahead of someone who values a ride more than you?

Comment: Re:Detect price gouging (Score 1) 66

by Kohath (#48656667) Attached to: Uber Pushing For Patent On Surge Pricing

Different people value their time vs. their money differently. The "price gouging" whine is essentially: my value choices are more important than your value choices because ... have sympathy for me.

And the result is that more people wait a longer time and drivers get paid less. And people who would become drivers to make some easy money driving only at peak times -- in other words, when they are needed most -- don't bother.

People are worse off overall, but sympathy is served.

Comment: Detect price gouging (Score 1) 66

by Kohath (#48656581) Attached to: Uber Pushing For Patent On Surge Pricing

Uber should create an algorithm to automatically detect when people will start whining to politicians about "price gouging".

Then they can send their extra drivers home -- drivers who would be happy to provide high-priced rides. And they can make riders wait for hours -- riders who would be happy to get a ride now, even if it meant paying a high price. Everyone will be poorly served, but no one will be "price gouging".

Medicine

Meet the Doctor Trying To Use the Blood of Ebola Survivors To Create a Cure 18

Posted by samzenpus
from the it's-in-the-blood dept.
An anonymous reader points out this article about Dr. James Crowe, who is trying to use the blood of Ebola survivors to develop a cure. "For months, Vanderbilt University researcher Dr. James Crowe has been desperately seeking access to the blood of U.S. Ebola survivors, hoping to extract the proteins that helped them overcome the deadly virus for use in new, potent drugs. His efforts finally paid off in mid-November with a donation from Dr. Rick Sacra, a University of Massachusetts physician who contracted Ebola while working in Liberia. The donation puts Crowe at the forefront of a new model for fighting the virus, now responsible for the worst known outbreak in West Africa that has killed nearly 7,000 people. Crowe is working with privately-held drugmaker Mapp Biopharmaceutical Inc, which he said will manufacture the antibodies for further testing under a National Institutes of Health grant. Mapp is currently testing its own drug ZMapp, a cocktail of three antibodies that has shown promise in treating a handful of Ebola patients."
Google

Google Unveils New Self-Driving Car Prototype 63

Posted by samzenpus
from the drive-off-into-the-sunset dept.
colinneagle writes In May, Google released a teaser image showing a mock-up of the autonomous vehicle it planned to build. Today, the company followed up with an image showing the finished product. Google says the first edition of its self-made self-driving car will feature "temporary manual controls as needed while we continue to test and learn." When Google introduced its prototype back in May, the company claimed its self-driving cars "won't have a steering wheel, accelerator pad, or brake pedal because they don't need them." Apparently, it still has yet to reach that point. The development is an important step forward for Google's driverless car efforts, which have been deemed impractical by many of late. Last year, the Financial Times reported that Google had difficulty finding manufacturing partners that would build vehicles featuring the self-driving capabilities used in its Prius. In that light, maybe Google's willingness to build its own hardware just to get the technology on the road means that its self-driving car team knows something the rest of the industry doesn't."

Comment: Re:Who will get (Score 2) 267

by flyingsquid (#48655367) Attached to: North Korean Internet Is Down

and very effective at preventing them from engaging in further cyberattacks.

Probably not so much. It's long been suspected that much of North Korea's cyberwarfare activity is actually based out of China, which is why the U.S. asked China for help shutting them down. I'm going to guess that this is because it's hard to get sufficient bandwidth to operate a cyberwarfare division in North Korea, and because North Korea's limited connectivity makes it too easy to shut down and isolate a team based in North Korea in precisely the scenario we are seeing here.

And North Korea can't be doing this without China's cooperation. China has one of the world's most advanced cyberwarfare capabilities, up there with other cyber-superpowers like U.S., Russia, and Israel, and they closely monitor their internet. If North Korean agents are using China as a staging ground to attack South Korea and the United States, China knows about it and is turning a blind eye.

Games

Minecraft Creator Notch's $70 Million Mansion Recreated In Minecraft 129

Posted by samzenpus
from the almost-like-the-real-thing dept.
theodp writes In case you've fallen behind on your TMZ reading, Minecraft creator Markus "Notch" Persson used his Microsoft money to outbid Beyonce and Jay Z for the most expensive mansion in Beverly Hills. Now, the Minecraft mogul's new $70 million mega-mansion has been recreated inside the game that made him rich.

+ - Meet The Doctor Trying To Use The Blood Of Ebola Survivors To Create A Cure

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "For months, Vanderbilt University researcher Dr. James Crowe has been desperately seeking access to the blood of U.S. Ebola survivors, hoping to extract the proteins that helped them overcome the deadly virus for use in new, potent drugs. His efforts finally paid off in mid-November with a donation from Dr. Rick Sacra, a University of Massachusetts physician who contracted Ebola while working in Liberia. The donation puts Crowe at the forefront of a new model for fighting the virus, now responsible for the worst known outbreak in West Africa that has killed nearly 7,000 people. Crowe is working with privately-held drugmaker Mapp Biopharmaceutical Inc, which he said will manufacture the antibodies for further testing under a National Institutes of Health grant. Mapp is currently testing its own drug ZMapp, a cocktail of three antibodies that has shown promise in treating a handful of Ebola patients."
United States

North Korean Internet Is Down 267

Posted by samzenpus
from the right-back-at-you dept.
First time accepted submitter opentunings writes "Engadget and many others are reporting that North Korea's external Internet access is down. No information yet regrading whether anyone's taking responsibility. From the NYT: "Doug Madory, the director of Internet analysis at Dyn Research, an Internet performance management company, said that North Korean Internet access first became unstable late Friday. The situation worsened over the weekend, and by Monday, North Korea’s Internet was completely offline. 'Their networks are under duress,' Mr. Madory said. 'This is consistent with a DDoS attack on their routers,' he said, referring to a distributed denial of service attack, in which attackers flood a network with traffic until it collapses under the load."

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