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Comment Re:Why is it controversial? (Score 5, Informative) 183

It's not inserted into the stomach. Whoever wrote that doesn't know what the hell he's talking about, or is listening to someone who doesn't know what he's talking about. It's inserted into the small bowel via the colon using the same equipment used in colonoscopies. And it's not controversial. If you have C. diff, you are suffering so horribly that grossness of the procedure just doesn't enter the equation. And the fecal transplant method is incredibly effective, and incredibly quick to solve the problem. People who have been in agony for weeks get so much better in a few hours they can be discharged from the hospital. The only issue is that fecal transplants aren't yet covered by insurance. But they aren't that expensive, less than a grand out of pocket.

Comment Re:series of tubes (Score 2) 686

Came here to say something like this. This is akin to reading something from the 1880s saying we should be looking for signs of giant steam engines on other worlds. It is a nice thought experiment, and it's harmless enough to look for these things, but we should be shocked if anyone was actually silly enough to do it.

Comment On the other hand, parasites can be good for you (Score 2) 313

Frustratingly, it seems there've been a lot of reports that point to lack of parasites (and exposure to other things as well) as being behind a lot of Americans' immunological deficiencies. But then of course as this article points out, having big cysts in your brain isn't all parades and root beer floats, either. We really need more research on how to trigger our immune systems properly without being endangered by actual meat-eating, egg-laying worms in our systems. Here's a link to one bit of research that mentions this. Apologies that I don't have the patience to learn how Slashdot wants me to alias it:

Comment Re: Jet packs (Score 1) 381

We might have to have a couple of breakthroughs first. Like exceeding the current 6-second flight time. Or the problem of burning off your legs occasionally. Also, my ideal transportation includes some sort of protection from the weather. I live in Colorado, where it can be 90 degrees and sunny and ten minutes later 50 degrees and hailing.

Comment Re:Slap? (Score 1) 103

I think the government went out of its way to prosecute this ridiculous case because they want to strengthen the government's ability to monitor and intrude on anything anyone does electronically or otherwise. It's all in the interest of creating totalitarian power, not serving the public in any way, shape or form.

Comment Re:Easier headline... (Score 1) 550

At the last job I had where they even had them, the HR manager conducting it was visibly not even paying any attention whatsoever to the answers. She clearly couldn't have given less of a shit, it was just an item on a checklist she was required to perform. Two jobs I've had since then didn't even have exit interviews, since employees are all just a faceless, interchangeable commodity now. So I think if you manage to work somewhere that they even do this any more, they won't remember you in any way whatsoever no matter how good you were, how critical your work was, or how many decades you worked there, unless you manage to piss them off completely. So as with most things in the modern world, you can only affect yourself negatively with the interview. Especially if HR people are the contacts. They, as a group, are more worthless than Aquaman's toenail clippings. Though one co-worker did say they serve the function of being the chaff that gets fired whenever a major employee lawsuit occurs.

Submission + - Why Zoe Zuul can't get work

LastDawnOfMan writes: "I just woke up from a dream where my wife wanted to apply for work at a company she found, and it was the typical "We only accept online applications" scenario. She asks me how that works and I reply "You fill out the application on a web page, just like you would fill one out on paper, and the first qualified person whose last name starts with 'A' gets the job." The idea startled me enough to wake me up and have me pondering whether it was true. In this age of commodified employees and 500+ applicants for jobs, does Andy Aardeman have a big advantage over Zoe Zuul? Should we be changing our last names to start with "A" like businesses do for yellow pages listings, which is why there are a zillion businesses called "AAA"-something? Does anyone out there know enough about HR processes to know if this would help a person get hired more easily?"

Comment Hidden land-based bigoty (Score 5, Insightful) 745

It seems that life, intelligence, and civilization are the things that we find most interesting, in ascending order, when discussing exobiology. And, in ascending order, much, much more difficult to achieve. In other words, simple life is almost common, complex life is rare, intelligence even rarer, and civilization the rarest of all. Each step requires more time, stability, and opportunities for differentiation, than the last. A lot of the uniqueness of the Earth, according to the article, has to do with its suitability for developing land-based life. I wonder if achieving a land-based civilization is rarer than a liquid-based one. If there are aliens sending probes over here to investigate us, maybe it's to study this weird, land-based civilization. I admit that one advantage to land-based life development is that it's much easier to form divided ecosystems on land than it is in an ocean. This could create more opportunities for divergent evolution, speeding things up if you want to see a particular result, like intelligent life. However, it seems to me that there could be situations on other planets that can create a similar effect in a liquid environment. Perhaps not common, but possible. My point is, it might be chauvinistic to focus so much on conditions that allow the development of land-based life. The other, hidden chauvinism is towards carbon-based life, but it's hard to blame ourselves for that since it's so difficult to figure out how other kinds of life could work.

Comment Even people who write 10+ hrs/day (Score 5, Interesting) 567

I worked at a newspaper and would see journalists and editors doing things like searching for words completely manually. I would say, "hey I have a very quick tip for you that will save you hours every single day for the rest of your career. In fact, it'll save much, much more time TODAY than it takes to teach it to you." and they would say "I don't have time!!! I have too much work to do!!!." Often I would just jump in and show someone how to do it, doing search and replaces in less than 10 seconds that would take them well over 30 minutes. That impressed a few people enough for them to start using it. But I found that many of them would persist in doing it manually anyway because it was just "easier." So what I discovered is that there are a lot of people who will work their fingers to the bone, unnecessarily spend hours working instead of enjoying life (these people were all salaried), even injure themselves with repetitive stress disorder, osteoarthritis, and so forth, to save the slightest mental effort involved in learning something very slightly new.

Comment Re:1980s all over again (Score 1) 588

Wasn't Everybody who said this, just dumb-asses who couldn't take one look at the size of Japan and notice that it is going to always be highly limited by its living space. There's only so much a relatively tiny country can accomplish, no matter how well they adopt rational management methods and aggressively export their products. Whereas China, not so much limited, they are fully large enough to grow the infrastructure required to overpower us all. And with a government that, unlike most countries, actually plans ahead, it's a pretty scary scenario for the rest of the world. Think we're gonna get to learn what it's like being on the receiving end of what we've been giving the Brown countries all these decades.

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