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Comment planet heating (Score 3, Insightful) 745

Pretty clear from the charts that the CO2 levels are rising because of man made contributions. It is also completely clear that the models linking rising CO2 to rising temperature are not quantitatively accurate (temperature flat for 10 years while CO2 continues the predicted rise). http://www.climate.gov/#climateWatch . The question now is whether or not the the models are even qualitatively accurate. Being an engineer, I do not think the climate scientist have models to the 4th significant figure.

Comment Re:Global warming has become hopelessly politicize (Score 1) 429

Actually, if you look at the data the trend may still be rising but much more slowly then "the experts" ever predicted. The current rate for the last 10 years appears to be less than 0.1 degrees C. The two decades before were also lower than predicted and in the range of 0.2 to 0.25 degrees C. The rate of rise is just as critical to global planning as the fact that the temperature is actually rising. I don't hold out much hope for the models ever being able to predict the temperature to 4 significant figures but that is what "the experts" claim they can do. When they have a model that starts in 1980 and currently predicts through 2010, I will listen.

Comment Re:old device new network. (Score 2) 115

Apple is expanding to more networks because it apparently is out from under the AT&T exclusivity period. In other countries where Apple has gone multi-carrier - their market share has expanded. It will expand here as well. Most of the switchers on verizon will come from windows mobile, palm and blackberry since android users are still locked into their 2 year contracts. I do expect a lot of users with wait for the next model in the June/July time frame.

Comment Re:Another things to consider (Score 1) 400

The rating is SEER and has to do with the ratio of BTUs (common measurement of heat transfer) and Watt-hours (common measure of electric usage). See posts above. The ratio works out to between 3 and 4 units of heat moved for every until of electric power consumed. We are not up to 10 to 1 yet (SEER of about 30).

Comment Re:Another things to consider (Score 2, Informative) 400

Actually - you have it backwards. Let's say the SEER rating of your air conditioner is 12. This means you move 12 BTU(thermal) for every 1 watt-hours of electric energy used. The energy equivalent of 1 BTU(thermal) is .29 watt-hours. You therefore move 12 x 0.29 watt hours (thermal) for every watt-hour (electric) or 3.48.

Comment Customer Satisfaction is best defense for iPhone (Score 2, Insightful) 347

At least in the US, most phones are locked into 2 year contracts. The incredibly high customer satisfaction rate of iPhones (74%) will limit the number of people who migrate away from the platform. #2 in Customer Satisfaction is RIM at 43%. It is unlikely a highly satisfied person with one system will change to another system unless forced by employer, provider, etc. For those who currently use the iPhone, it seems unlikely any of the above will occur.

The market is still not fully mature with 40% of Americans owning Smartphones but over the next year or two there will be many more people replacing their current smart phones than entering the smart phone market. Those unsatisfied with their current offering are the ones most likely to move to something new. Therefore, it seems the Android is much more likely to kill off market share from everyone except iPhone. Since most smartphone manufacturers need to use someone else's software (I mean the # of manufacturers since they only have 23% market share between them), I suspect this means Window Mobile.

This is of course a US View and the market is much more open in most of the World. The key to maintaining market share is customer satisfaction. How many sidekicks would be sold now even if T-Mobile had them up for sale?

Source of data

Comment Re:Solar panels are peak power generators (Score 1) 367

The peak power requirement goes beyond the time the sun shines by a few hours. Therefore, the user base is paying for having the same amount of power available but using it for less hours. This saves fuel cost but not construction cost. The cost for peak MWH goes up as solar panels come online. This is different from concentrated solar plants that have the ability to store some heat and produce for a few hours after the sun goes down.

Comment Re:The irony, of course... (Score 1) 925

Actually the studies published (See New England Journal of Medicine but I do not have the exact article) shows that most preventative medicine does not save money. Immunizations do (except maybe Shingles vaccine), prenatal care is borderline.

Civil engineering (clean water, sewer systems) are highly cost effective but this is not an issue in the US.

Lifestyle changes (stop smoking, lose weight, exercise, etc) are highly cost effective since all of those studies assume no cost except an occasional counseling session.

If someone is trying to claim preventative medicine saves money, then they either know they are lying or should know they are lying.

The medical savings theory rests of 2 premises. That low cost areas of medical care can translate to lower cost in high cost areas. This presumes the genetic makeup of the two populations are similar (they are not), that cultural issues are the same (they are not), and that all cost differences is due to greed of MDs, hospitals, and other health care providers.

None of the democratic proposals addresses the unique legal system that is probably responsible for a large amount of the excess US cost versus other countries but this is my guess as a neurologist as I see the extreme defensive medicine practiced in headache care which is 50% of my practice.

Comment Re:Why open Source not open Standard? (Score 1) 170

Actual there is a lack of standards. There is no standard, as far as I am aware, as to how an office visit note would be exchanged. There are standards for labs (HL7), radiology images (DICOM) but no standards for radiology reports. From being in the hospital, there are consults, things like EKG, admissions histories, discharges, nursing notes, med sheets, vital sheets, etc. all of which need standards for transfer. More importantly, if we have access to all of this info is how to authenticate the transfers. I would not want a central storehouse to have all of the information but rather it should still go from place to place as authorized by the patient.

Another issue that no one in government wants to address (by the lawyers, for the lawyers) is the issue of malpractice law suits. Some patient will have a nursing note buried in their chart that mentions something that some lawyer will insist I should have read if I wanted to know everything about my patient before I treated them. It is not unusual for hospital admissions to produces hundreds of pages per admission and there is no one who is going to read and remember everything from each page.

Comment Re:Macs come only with Safari (Score 1) 373

IANAL but the basic concept of the antitrust case is that Microsoft penalized vendors who did not agree to be a microsoft only shop by charging more per copy of windows if they sold systems that did not have windows. Then they did not allow the OEMs to put other browsers on the system. They did not allow OEMs to remove IE (claiming it was not possible).

If Apple goes to Walmart and says, "if you want to sell the iPod, you cannot carry the Zune" or if Apple goes to Walmart and says, "if you do not carry the Zune, you will get an additional $10 off each iPod you sell", then that would be illegal. I also believe that if they sold the iPods at a loss once they had a majority share in the market to put competitors out of business, that this would also be illegal. Being a monopoly, by itself, is not illegal.

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