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Comment Re:The mighty data (Score 1) 322

So you switched because your doctor focused on medical issues rather than providing you with emotionally comforting talk therapy?

You are not alone. If you look at doctor review sites, by far the biggest reason for low ratings is a rude receptionist. The 2nd biggest reason is doctors that avoided chit-chat. Actual quality of treatment and medical outcomes are rarely even mentioned.

It wasn't chit-chat I was missing. It was someone who could concentrate on listening to me and asking the right questions, instead of on data entry. My current doctor does this. He must update my record after I've left.

Comment The mighty data (Score 1) 322

It's not only outside of consultations that doctors can spend time entering data. I once switched doctors because he spent most of every consultation oriented towards his screen and keyboard, entering symptoms, treatments, and medication into my medical record, and little time speaking with me face-to-face.

Comment Re:Microsoft (Score 1) 174

Large corporations are usually not very innovative.

Often true. But Apple seems to be an exception. This may be one legacy of Steve Jobs. A willingness to take time to perfect things, to relentlessly improve their offerings without getting distracted trying to clone the current-big-thing, to bet the company on an opportunity, and to aggressively steer a large company faster than would be possible without a BDL as CEO.

Perhaps the need for time and space to perfect their products is the origin of Apple's notorious secrecy.

Comment Microsoft (Score 1) 174

They said the same about the Kinect. It lasted ... what, 3 months?

What interests me is how Microsoft seems to have again missed the boat after being a pioneer in augmented reality with their HoloLens. A replay of earlier failures to press home their market-leader status in pocket and larger touch-screen devices, in gestural interfaces, and in web browsers.

They seem to have a fixation on big lost battles like search and their own phone ecosystem, rather than exploiting and continuing to perfect their innovations. They develop exciting things, but move on while they're still primitive.

Comment Re:somewhat deceiving numbers.... (Score 1) 128

Is there really any advantage over 16 bit integer, which would be faster and less complex?

Yes, artificial (and real) neurons deliver a weighted average of positive and negative inputs. So you usually have large positive and negative inputs which subtractively cancel to a moderate output. Integer doesn't handle this subtractive cancellation nearly as well as floating point, which can keep the same precision over large changes in scale.

Comment Re:American people should have a voice (Score 1) 629

If they lose they get a liberal who will change the court profoundly.

I think a Democrat POTUS would avoid kicking Garland to the kerb in favour of a revenge uber-liberal. The poor guy gets his hopes built up, then dashed. It doesn't matter that politics was probably a factor in his choosing over others. Once chosen, and given no relevant skeletons in the closet, he should no longer be treated as a political football.

Comment Re:If your product has adverts... (Score 1) 317

UL certification is a good analogy up to a point. Ad classification is however a less expert and less capital-intensive task. Most advertising block lists are maintained by volunteers. (I don't know whether ABP donates to support any of these.) The main reason acceptable ad whitelists are not similarly created by volunteers is that there's not enough people committed to the idea that making good ads visible makes the world a better place. But though unattractive, creating such a list is lucrative when it's enabled by default. So that's why it now exists.

Comment Re:AdBlock brought this upon themselves (Score 1) 317

Yes, the raison d'être of an ad is to attract attention.

I only have so much money though. I'd liken it to a game of shuffleboard - or perhaps a race to a cliff. The faster/closer to the cliff you get, the more points you earn. However, go over and you lose all the points.

The most aggressive capitalist usually wins. If they go too far, they can either back-off to the point of profit maximization, or re-open under a new identity.

As others have mentioned - Ad blocking wouldn't be such a big deal if the advertisers hadn't shat in their own pool and poisoned the viewing of it's audience.

Yes, it's been a death spiral as ad volume has been made to compensate for diminishing ad effectiveness. TV is adapting though, through a rise in subscription services. Subscriptions aren't the entire solution for news and information, but there is the option here of them getting compensated for helping their users make smart choices.

As Jerry mentioned, the choice is 'acceptable ads' for me, or NO ads. My policy is simple. You put up a 'I won't let you access the content without allowing ads' notice and I'll go elsewhere.

Global, ubiquitous, neutral, and cheap Internet connectivity has certainly put the power back in the consumers' hands. But unless alternative revenue sources are developed, there is a risk that the loss of ad revenue will result in a tragedy of the commons, where you either pay or get junk.

Comment Re:AdBlock brought this upon themselves (Score 1) 317

Since the option is 'acceptable but less effective' or 'no ads, no effect' it's not really a choice.

While there are still sufficient people who will cop (or don't know how to block) "unacceptable" ads, showing them will be what most sites choose, though sites could accommodate the ad-sensitive by allowing an acceptable-ad mode to be turned on (this would work because those who don't care are unlikely to turn it on).

Still, acceptable ads by virtue of their invisibility, or by virtue of being targeted at the ad-shy, don't pay well. So no ads, by making a site more attractive and more independent, may be a worthwhile choice if an alternative source of revenue is found. And there are alternatives.

Comment Re:If your product has adverts... (Score 1) 317

No, the acceptable ads option is a paid whitelist, which is what this news story is lamenting. You could be distributing driveby-download malware to create a bot army and so long as the danegeld is given to ABP, your software will be on the acceptable ads list.

Adblock Pro claim, and I believe them, that no one can buy their way on to the acceptable ads list. Ads have to meet their guidelines to get on there.

What ABP do do however, is to refuse to put ads they deem acceptable on the list if payment is demanded but refused. Somewhat distasteful, but they wouldn't have a business without it.

Comment Re:AdBlock brought this upon themselves (Score 1) 317

Hell, I'll assert that I think that it's less the fee, because most companies would be willing to accept less money where they currently get no money, than it is the content rules. Not being allowed to use flash, sound, movies, blinking images, all the other annoying 'sight pullers' results in what they think are less effective ads. This is despite said distracting ads being precisely why we install ad-blockers in the first place.

Yes, the raison d'être of an ad is to attract attention. So I can't see many sites and apps with compelling content wanting to restrict themselves to ineffective "acceptable ads". Sites like Google can however get away with them, because the content is already similar to acceptable ads. Static newspaper ads have always mostly been both acceptable and profitable, but that was before the explosion of information sources, and the associated quickening pace of life, stripped them of much of the attention time they once had.

Comment Re:If your product has adverts... (Score 1) 317

I will accept ads that are essentially the electronic equivalent of newspaper ads. Those are acceptable. Those are really the only kind that are acceptable. Early-on I allowed ads. then ads started hijacking my browser, and eventually ad-delivered malware through a site that required the use of IE broke the DNS on a particular computer, and I decided that from that point forth I was not going to allow any Internet-based ads until they fixed the problem. They have not fixed the problem so I still do not allow ads.

Do you use Adblock Plus with its Acceptable Ad option turned on? That seems to be exactly what you want.

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The computer can't tell you the emotional story. It can give you the exact mathematical design, but what's missing is the eyebrows. - Frank Zappa