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Comment: Re:Ebola obviously spreads more easily... (Score 1) 417

by Rich0 (#48180317) Attached to: Texas Health Worker Tests Positive For Ebola

With the exception of Ms. Vinson's potential exposure to ~800 People, I'm not sure how You conclude "we aren't doing a great job at [containing Ebola in the U.S.]" Like Ms. Vinson, the only other two Individuals known to have contracted the disease were not adequately trained by the hospital in Texas. In fact, according to congressional testimony this week, They were not trained at all and the CDC had apparently informed the hospital not only did Workers need to be adequately trained but level 4 PPE was likely necessary, as opposed to the level 2 PPE used. Now, if by "we", You mean the Texas hospital, yes, I agree "we" aren't doing a great job at it. However, this point is not clear from Your statement.

By we I mean every person in the USA.

Diseases don't care whose fault it is that the ball got dropped. They kill people all the same. If people aren't competent to manage a disease, then they shouldn't be managing it. The CDC shouldn't be just sending memos from on high. If a hospital isn't doing enough, then this should be recognized as a national emergency and those who are mismanaging the situation should be placed under the supervision of somebody who knows what they are doing.

Of course, stepping in and actually doing something would mean that we can't just keep pointing the finger of blame at the folks who are bungling things.

People need to realize that the worst possible outcome of an Ebola epidemic isn't that people will stop shopping in malls and that the locally-elected coroner/etc and hospital board might lose some authority temporarily. In a state of emergency that requires coordination at the national level, sometimes you can't leave every decision up to the local level.

Comment: Re:Editor Troll (Score 4, Insightful) 279

by Rich0 (#48176449) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Stop PulseAudio From Changing Sound Settings?

Yup. If posted on a typical distro support forum this would get a clear answer in about 3 posts.

Instead we'll get 300 "helpful" posts on slashdot where the closest to being helpful comes out to "stop using skype and pulseaudio" but most will be off-topic banter about Lennart and systemd...

Slashdot must be dying and this stuff has to be some kind of deliberate effort to attract eyeballs by making slashdot the premiere place for flamewars. Half the summaries and headlines are completely misleading as well, generally designed to maximize sensation and banter.

News articles should give everything away in the first three lines, and should give half of everything away in the headline. They shouldn't be teasers. You shouldn't have to read the original article to figure out what the summary got wrong. If I'm in a hurry I want the condensed version of the news, not misinformation substituted for news.

I don't know why I even bother here any more. The changes to the discussion system were annoying enough. It seems like the content has gone downhill as well.

Comment: Re:Region-Specific (Score 1) 81

by Rich0 (#48175655) Attached to: India Successfully Launches Region-Specific Navigation Satellite

Agree. It isn't clear to me how one implements a "regional GPS." You could certainly implement a global one and then disable it outside of the region (ie satellites don't broadcast when they're not near India). Maybe a few in geosync might work - they would all lie on the equator so the solution to the problem would allow for a position in either India or the Indian ocean, and if it is "regional" they could just exclude the southern solution. I'm not sure what the accuracy would be like since all your fixes would come from satellites without much angular separation.

Comment: Re:Prison population (Score 1) 405

by Rich0 (#48171581) Attached to: As Prison Population Sinks, Jails Are a Steal

Makes you wonder if you'll start to see bubbles of high crime around airports with a high level of general aviation (which tends to use fuels with a very high concentration of lead compared to what was used in cars - ironically called "low lead" aviation gas).

Of course, there could be other factors. Such areas may have lower land values, and that could be a factor that impacts crime rates more strongly.

Comment: Re:freedoms f----d (Score 1) 126

*All* patents are supposed to only cover a specific implementation, maybe not quite so narrowly as pharmaceuticals, but to the point that it's not incredibly uncommon for corporations to steal independent mechanical inventions by modifying them just enough to no longer be protected.

Of course, but the fact is that with software this is often not the case, and it costs a great deal of money and risk to litigate things.

With pharmaceuticals for whatever reason the vague patents tend to get worked out, but companies have still managed to use them to delay competition, which costs consumers a LOT of money.

Comment: Re:That works fine if you manage to nip it in the (Score 1) 381

by Rich0 (#48171525) Attached to: How Nigeria Stopped Ebola

Well, there are obviously a couple of solutions.

If you're still all-in for the free market, then just mandate that all hospitals conduct training/drills/etc for particular epidemics (including ones like Ebola that end to result in fluids all over the place, and other epidemics that are perhaps a bit more tidy but airborne), Mandate that hospitals also stock a certain list of materials in some ratio to the number of beds they have. Then audit for compliance, and fine anybody who doesn't comply sufficiently that they aren't saving money via non-compliance. Since every hospital is affected, they all have to raise their prices, and nobody who complies gets priced out of the market.

However, I think that problems like Ebola point to the need for true universal coverage. For an epidemic like Ebola the chain is as strong as the weakest link. It doesn't help if half the population has the world's most comprehensive insurance policies if the other half of the population tries to hide their illness because they're uninsured. I can have the world's greatest insurance plan, but if some minimum wage worker who doesn't get sick days and has no insurance has a drop of swat land on my hamburger because they went to work instead of the hospital despite feeling lousy and being friends with a guy who just got back from West Africa, then I'm probably going to die and my insurer can't do anything about it.

Sure, eventually we'll probably have treatments, but right now we don't, and plasma donations from Ebola survivors only work when you have only a few sick people in the entire country to deal with.

The cheapest way to deal with Ebola is to have people who are sick go to the hospital, and they aren't going to do that if they're stuck with a $20k bill even if it turns out they don't have the disease, and they lose a day of work besides. For the want of $25k, we get an extra $1M worth of epidemic spreading.

Comment: Re:Maybe it's just time for RedHat ReactOS (Score 0) 516

by Rich0 (#48171427) Attached to: Debian Talks About Systemd Once Again

Meanwhile those of us who like Linux as Unix and aren't in the market for "Free Windows" can go on enjoying a better Unix than Unix.

Nothing is preventing you from forking the last Debian and doing just that. The problem is that while those opposed to systemd are fairly vocal, they're not nearly as numerous as they think and most aren't active contributors.

For the number of people crying "just use OpenRC" or whatever, how many of them have written a patch for OpenRC in the last year? Certainly not nearly as many as there are writing patches for systemd.

Comment: Re:There's a solution: (Score 1) 516

by Rich0 (#48171405) Attached to: Debian Talks About Systemd Once Again

All those functions already are in separate binaries (sort of - spawning a container is a separate binary, but chrooting a daemon is part of the same daemon that launches them). However, they aren't really designed to operate in isolation (at least not the log and the init), and nobody is interested in building bash-based replacements for journald or nspawn, etc.

Binutils and gcc consists of a whole stack of separate binaries, but you don't see people really mixing and matching individual ones much. They certainly weren't doing it back when it was first created.

Comment: Re:Systemd seems fine to me at this stage (Score 1) 516

by Rich0 (#48171369) Attached to: Debian Talks About Systemd Once Again

Well, it does some things differently, and I can get why some don't like the "new way."

Also, on distros that are just adopting it like Debian it is immature. When you replace an init system that has been in use for 15 years with all those tiny little bugs worked out with a dependency-based init system that is brand new, there are going to be bugs. Dependency errors are easy to miss when you have unusual configurations. I had all kinds of issues with services not waiting for DNS to be available before starting, since the assumption was that if the network was available, DNS must be available. That is usually true, but it tends to fail when you're talking about a DNS server. Etc...

Comment: Re:OpenRC (Score 1) 516

by Rich0 (#48171351) Attached to: Debian Talks About Systemd Once Again

As a gentoo user, I agree with this sentiment. It was discussed, but as a kind of "or if we really wanted to, we could use OpenRC or something" alternative. It was never really a serious contender, and I never understood why.

I believe the concern is that it isn't as event-driven. It also tends to go against the prevailing winds. I'm sure OpenRC will be supported for a long time, but a lot of Gentoo devs are moving away from it (though many are also sticking with it). Actually, my biggest concern is that neither is going to end up being well-supported on Gentoo as a result, but that is going to impact the OpenRC users harder since they can't just steal their scripts/units from other distros like SystemD users can.

Comment: Re:freedoms f----d (Score 5, Interesting) 126

Patents in pharmacuticals work well...Their application to software has been a disaster.

Something the average software engineer might not appreciate is that patents for pharmaceuticals are a bit like copyright. They cover a specific molecule, which is basically an implementation. Anybody can tweak the molecule and if it works they can sell a competing product. Of course, doing so still costs hundreds of millions of dollars in testing/development costs, so that is why we tend to only have so many molecules in each class.

The patent office sometimes does issue very broad patents in pharmaceuticals, such as patents on a gene or molecular target, but for the most part they tend to get struck down by the courts, for all the same reasons that software patents cause so much trouble.

When applied to a single molecule patents work well in pharmaceuticals because they allow a company to be rewarded for its huge initial outlay in development costs despite their very low marginal cost of production. Now, companies do try to abuse patent law to extend their monopolies and this is something that I fully support punishing harshly. Society makes a deal - we'll pay $7/pill for about 10 years so that we have new pills, but after that anybody can get them for pennies - companies do not have some kind of right to profits - it is the offer society makes because it serves all of our collective interests.

I'm also for having the NIH actually fund more end-to-end drug development where the government bears all the risk of failure, but also owns the patents (which can then be freely licensed to US-based manufacturers, or those in countries who make similar investments and reciprocate). That would in theory lead to drugs that cost pennies from day one, while leaving the private pharma industry intact until such a time as the government-funded model is proven and ramps up and generally takes over (likely slowly hiring all the private pharma employees who actually do R&D/etc).

Comment: Re:Ebola obviously spreads more easily... (Score 1) 417

by Rich0 (#48165441) Attached to: Texas Health Worker Tests Positive For Ebola

Thus proving my point. There is no such thing as truly ideal conditions

Except that's not how your point came across; it came across as "these are conditions ideal enough; therefore, the disease should not have spread".

I was saying that the conditions in the hospital were better than could be expected if Ebola got out of control (ie hundreds of people sick in every town). I don't dispute that they weren't ideal enough. My point is that you can't expect hospitals to be "ideal enough."

Yes, it is apparent that under truly ideal conditions you can contain the spread of Ebola. My point is just that so far we aren't doing a great job at it, and if we fail to contain it things will get even worse as hospitals aren't even able to afford the level of rigor they used in Dallas (which again was obviously already insufficient).

Comment: Re:On the ignorance of this debate (Score 1) 755

by Rich0 (#48165419) Attached to: Systemd Adding Its Own Console To Linux Systems

Systemd can spawn containers that manage web servers, why not have a web server built into systemd?

The design of linux essentially ensures that every process has a stdin/stdout. It does not ensure that every process contains a webserver. So, having a way to manage the stdin/stdout for things like containers makes more sense than implementing a webserver for every process.

Of course, it would be nice if the design for the console make it really easy to attach to it using a browser-based application. :)

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