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Comment Need to connect wires to microscopic TPM traces (Score 2) 76

> Is the TPM protected from writing? If not, I assume the certificate can be modified/replaced via software.

No, you cannot write directly to TPM nvram from the OS. The spec says the endorsement key is supposed to be permanently burned in at the factory, but some manufacturers instead support CreateEndorsementKeyPair, which asks the TPM to create a key for itself, if it doesn't already have one. If it already has a key, as it should, CreateEndorsementKeyPair does nothing but return an error code.

To put your own malicious endorsement key in the TPM, you'd need to directly access its NVRAM. The most direct way to do that would be to pull out your scanning electron microscope and connect to the nvram traces on the chip. If some *other* vulnerability allowed full write access to TPM NVRAM, that would be a game changer.

Comment I need the opposite - self-supporting until hit (Score 1) 96

I'd like to find the opposite - something solid enough to be self-supporting at least, until it softens greatly on impact. It's easy enough to find thick liquids that thin under stress (ketchup being one example), but I want it *solid* until it's stressed.

So far the closest I have is floral foam, which crushes easily into a powder.

Comment Trump's public statements aren't tha to understand (Score 5, Interesting) 449

Decades ago, before he got into politics, I studied Trump quite a bit. I read all his books, which explained his thinking although ghost writers wrote the words. I've paid more attention since he started wading into politics and making some outrageous statements. He's not that complicated and his major ideas have been written about extensively.

When he makes public statements, keep in mind he LOVES to get press, he craves publicity. Good press or bad press it doesn't much matter, he just wants to be in the news. Raising his profile both advances his business / agenda and simply feels good for him. There were 16 Republican candidates who were generally more classically qualified than him, yet he got all the attention, and that's a big part of what won him the presidency.

He also loves HUGE, and spectacular! People joke about him always saying everything is going to be "yuge", the biggest, the best ever, and that joke is because he actually does that. He builds hotels huge, with gold plated stuff everywhere. That's his personality. He loves the biggest, the best, going to extremes - and then emphasizing the "yuge" in his PR.

There are a few other things, but those two go a long way to understanding whatever Trump says publicly.

Comment You're confusing orbit with "space" (Score 1) 126

At 60 miles, the air pressure is very low. That doesn't mean you have "limitless time" or any of that. In order to orbit at that altitude, you'd need to be traveling at 20KM/ s or so. The Falcon is only going 500 m/s at that altitude. It would need to be going about 40 times as fast for what you said to make sense.

Comment Yep, tune your I/O size (Score 2) 375

The questioner said "We do a lot of I/O". If you do io 512 bytes at a time, this may be noticeable. But that was a poor choice to begin with. 8192 bytes can be a lot faster, even without this issue, and even more so now. Each disk read is a call into kernel space. To minimize the number of calls, grab more data each time.

Try different values and benchmark. It can make a big difference.

Comment *potential* (Score 1) 218

A couple thousand people in the US have the disease. I guesstimated that half of those might pay full price for the treatment (via their insurance company). The pharmacuetical company has already announced their own subsidies, so some will get the treatment at less than full cost. Some won't be good candidates for whatever reason, and some may decide to stay away from this genetic therapy stuff for now.

Comment eHarmony was the worst of the sites I tried (Score 1) 160

I tried several web sites, and went to lunch with dozens of women. eHarmony was the worst of the bunch, in my experience. Mate1 was my favorite.

eHarmony always wanted to match me with women a thousand miles away.

I went out with a lot of women because I was looking for a very special lady, a one-in-a-million. I did end up finding the love of my life, on mate1.

Comment Somewhat OT, my 3yo started doing multiplication (Score 0) 218

This is somewhat off-topic, perhaps, but it made me smile the other day when my three year old daughter started using multiplication and subtraction in her daily play recently.

Meanwhile, liberals like this guy figure ($86M + $10M) X 10 years + $42M = $50 million total.

I guess it's your business if you decided to ditch school and smoke pot all day, but please stay out of public policy. You only manage to completely fuck yourself when you try to make economic policy decisions without the ability to do basic arithmetic.

Comment Math fail. 3.5% profit (Score 1) 218

The company has been working on this for ten years. I looked at a breakdown of the R&D numbers for one of those ten years and found they spend $86 million on internal R&D and $20 million on external. So figure the total R&D cost alone to find and develop this treatment and move it through approvals is maybe $800 million. That doesn't include the carrying cost of the $800 million over ten years, administrative costs, etc.

If 1,000 patients get it, the treatment brings in $850 million retail minus roughly $80 million in corporate subsidies they've announced, minus distribution so maybe $750 million or so. They'll lose roughly $100 million on the US market, but hopefully make that up in Europe. It depends on how many of the 2,000 or so Europeans affected by the disease get the treatment.

Comment 3.5% average profit (Score 2) 218

The company may well lose money. The $86 million internal R&D was for 2016 only. They've been working on this treatment for ten years. I know they also had $10 million external R&D for this treatment in 2016; I don't exactly know how much of the $86 million was for this, but it looks like they had four "promising" ones that would account for most of it. So maybe $25 million internal and $10 million external on this treatment on 2016.

How much was spent on *this* one doesn't much matter, though, because most medications aren't approved. They need to R&D many in order to find one that works well, is safe, and gets approved. If they spend $100 million looking at 8 possible treatments and one of those gets approved and generates $80 million revenue, they've lost $20 million overall.

Overall, large pharmaceutical companies made an average 3.7% return on their R&D investment in 2016 and 3.2% in 2017 (Deloitte). Small firms do better on average, but also have a higher chance of bankruptcy if they don't score a hit.

Comment Not really. Company for 10 years, pays the univer (Score 5, Insightful) 218

You'd be guessing wrong, more or less. The company has been developing this drug since October 2007, ten years ago. Their 2016 annual report shows they spend about $86 million / year on internal R&D, mostly for this drug in recent years. That's "e.g. all the hard work".

They also booked $10 million in external R&D for this drug in 2016, but that number is going to get bigger. External R&D is the company paying the university (Penn) for the research the school did over ten years ago. Now that the drug has been approved and it's going on the market, the company will have to pay the school another $3.8 million plus about 5% royalty on all sales. 1,000 patients at $850,000 is $850 million. 5% of that is $42 million. So the school will get about $42 million royalty, plus the $3.8 million base, plus the millions they've already received. Figure the school may have spent $200,00-$500,000 on the initial research, they are doing extremely well. Something like $300K spent on research will net the school about $60 million.

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