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Comment Re:Not News (Score 1) 724

What type of engineer did the person claim to be? These organizations do not hold a trademark on the word "engineer." Instead, they are legally granted power by the state laws, and only over certain kinds of engineers. Otherwise, the millions of people with Bachelors, Masters, and Ph.Ds in Engineering from accredited universities could not legally call themselves engineers. But of course they can and do.

Comment Are they subtitling, or distributing the movie? (Score 2) 137

Most fansubs I have seen are rips and re-encodes of the video with the subtitles baked into the video. That is clearly a derived work and subject to copyright law. If they just distributed an .srt file then they might not have the problem. There's technical issues with rendering the .srt from within an Amazon or Netflix player, or on your streaming media box, but that could be dealt with.

Comment This is how PINs should work (Score 1) 85

Instead of entering the PIN into the merchant's terminal, the terminal should just power the card, and I enter the PIN into the card. That way the merchant doesn't get my PIN. This was proposed in the 1990's and deemed impossible because nobody had chip cards and the technology would have been too expensive. Now that the government finally mandated chip cards, they are suddenly realizing all the features that we could have had long ago. It's probably too late. We will all pay with smart devices in another decade.

Comment Re:Medical tricorder (Score 1) 44

As it stands now we do not have any certification program to allow anything to make medical diagnosis other than a medical doctor degree

That is not true. We do indeed have such a certification program. I write software that must pass such certification. Here's a brief overview of how this happens:

Suppose you urinate in a cup, and send that sample to a lab, and the lab personnel put that sample it into a Qiagen Symphony, or a BD Viper XTR, or a Roche Cobas; Or suppose you go to Walgreens and the employee with no degree whatsoever sticks a swap up your nose, and inserts the swab into a BD Veritor. In both cases, the medical instrument diagnoses the medical condition. The hardware+software made the diagnosis, not the human. The company that made that medical instrument got FDA approval for the hardware + software combination to perform a diagnosis. It's called a Pre-Market Approval (PMA). The PMA submission states what conditions must be met in order for the hardware+software to be viable. Ex: For a Veritor, it probably says "any schmoe with 15 minutes of training is sufficient." The other 3 instruments probably say "This certification applies only if the customer is in a BSL-3 lab following CLIA level 3 practices used by a lab technicial with blah blah training, using certain chemicals that meet certain rules..." Note that in the Walgrees+Veritor case there's no doctor involved anywhere. In the lab scenario, a doctor ordered the test. In both cases, no human being sees the raw data. Even a doctor does not have the knowledge required to turn the raw data into a diagnosis. That required a team of engineers, doctors, and statisticians to develop.

Comment Re:American problem is American (Score 1) 440

But a few years ago a local was prosecuted for using an old bath tub as a planter in their backyard. The kicker was that you couldn't see the bath tub from the street.

Since you couldn't see the bathtub from the street, it means one of the neighbors called him out on it. Such laws only get passed if someone asks for them. So in this case, the law seems to accurately reflect the views of the local residents. My bet is that this involved an HOA. Probably some passive-aggressive jerk in the neighborhood contacted the HOA or the police. The victim needs to just move far away.

Comment Re:Medical tricorder (Score 1) 44

As someone who writes such software for the medical industry, I can attest that it most definitely needs to be certified. The two main areas of concern are misdiagnosis and misassociation of data (industry term for mixing-up patient results). A false negative result could kill someone since they either get no treatment or delayed treatment. A false positive results in incorrect or unnecessary treatment. Mixing up results causes both, potentially en masse.

Comment Google has too many redundant projects (Score 2) 99

Google and Microsoft both have the problem that they have multiple nearly identical services within one company. They periodically retire one service and add another, inevitably losing or breaking some feature. Just recently, my phone lost what I think was "Google Assistant" and now it uses "Google Home" - which is the same thing with fewer features. For example, it used to work from any screen so I could tell it "OK Google, dial {phone number I see on the screen}" or "OK Google, search for {thing I see on screen}" It also can't identify songs. It even has a special message where it tells me that feature isn't supported yet. That was a strange response since that was the first indication I had that the program I was using had been replaced.

Comment Knock-off Vizio TVs (Score 2) 25

I tell people my TV was so cheap, it's a fake Vizio.

The funny story is that my Vizio TV came with the letters VIZIO on the front corner. But after a few days, the first "I" fell off so it just said V ZIO. A month later, the other "I" fell-off so now it says V Z O. I love the TV snobs who feel snubbed to be in a house that has a low-end TV, but double-so since I would buy a fake version of it. I'm not sure if they believe me or not. :-) In reality, Vizio gets good reviews in the mid-range. Check-out rtings for accurate no-nonsense reviews. The real low-end TVs are the "Westinghouse" and "RCA" which are just companies that rebrand existing products, or names like "Proscan" that appear for a year then vanish.

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