Follow Slashdot stories on Twitter


Forgot your password?
DEAL: For $25 - Add A Second Phone Number To Your Smartphone for life! Use promo code SLASHDOT25. Also, Slashdot's Facebook page has a chat bot now. Message it for stories and more. Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 internet speed test! ×

Comment Re:ROI (Score 1) 345

Cancer therapy drugs avoid the prisoner's dilemma because they are profitable to develop and sell, and so are the rational choice for a company. This is because if a company were to develop antibiotic drugs and only sell them to those who can pay the huge costs for it (like cancer drugs), people would call for their blood and their situation would be untenable. Their image would be mud, and somehow or the other, people will find a way to get the molecules to poorer people for cheap.

Cancer drugs avoid this because vastly fewer people get cancer than bacterial infections, and a company is not seen as a monster for not providing cheap cancer drugs to a very few people. But with the number of people needing anti-biotics numbering in the billions, there's no way a pharma company can justify not selling them cheaply and to poor people around the world.

Bottom line: No country in the world is 100% libertarian including the US. When the greater good vastly outweighs the benefits of a single entity, the property rights of that entity will be infringed upon.

Antibiotic drugs create the prisoner's dilemma because the rational decision for an individual company is not to develop them due to unprofitability. And in this case, everyone following individual self interest leads to a diminishing of the greater good.

Comment Re:ROI (Score 1) 345

Most people reading my response and who know what the prisoner's dilemma is, would immediately know what I mean. As such, I gain zero benefit from taking the considerable effort of explaining how it applies to this scenario specifically for you.

Maybe if you were to pay me for my time, I can educate you on the subject. Otherwise, it's not worth it. If that's unsatisfying to you, well...such is life.

Comment Re:Voluntary colonialism (Score 4, Insightful) 81

Buying Manhattan by itself couldn't be called colonialism. The real problem with colonialism is the eventual suppression of human rights, murder etc. Without human rights violations, there would be no problem with colonialism.

Let me put in this way. I'm an Indian (as in India - the east. Not native American). The British were a problem only because there were human rights violations. Let's say the British instead had democratic elections and people freely chose a British national to govern instead of an Indian, I would have absolutely no problems with that. That would not be called colonialism.

As long as there are no human rights violations, there's no complaint. And tech companies are not engaging in that kind of thing.

Comment Updates are Late (Score 1, Informative) 43

I bought an Android One phone to get regular updates. It took more than 6 months for Google to roll it out to my device. I was expecting an update within 2 weeks of the announcement at Google I/O. They've changed the wording on their website, but at the time it was:

"Android One devices receive the latest version of Android directly from Google. When a new update is released, it can take up to two weeks to reach your device.

So Google broke their promise big time. I wouldn't advise anyone to get an Android One phone.

Comment Re:Twitch is so heavily used...good luck. (Score 1) 50

Well, there are no network effects that I'm aware of so I guess it shouldn't be a problem. A better product will be used cause there are no switching costs. Unlike say switching from Facebook to something else even if the alternative is better. In the latter scenario, a better product will not automatically get social media users cause the value of a social network increases with the number of existing users alone.

I don't see the same effect for video streaming services.

Comment Re:There is no such thing as non-empirical science (Score 1) 364

And yet we have data that doesn't fit neatly in a single model. Hence the need or quest for unified theories in the first place. I mean...the current state of physics depends on a lot of data that doesn't fit a single framework.

And let's not even get started on dark matter. The entire concept was evolved to account for discrepancies in data that didn't fit existing models. If we can get a theory that not only explains everything we already know, but which also has a convenient explanation of what dark matter was meant to explain, that would be awesome.

Sure, a lot of theories might be crap. But it's worth popping them out nevertheless because the good ones can change the way we look at the world forever.

Comment Re:There is no such thing as non-empirical science (Score 1) 364

That's just terminology. All of mathematics is "storytelling". The fact is that physics desperately needs ideas more than anything else. And we need them in a flood. Who cares what terminology is used? Let people make ideas and follow them. Some may pan out. Most won't. So what?

If some people don't want to call it "science", let them. It doesn't matter.

Slashdot Top Deals

Philosophy: A route of many roads leading from nowhere to nothing. -- Ambrose Bierce