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Comment Re:This is, how the system should work (Score 1) 149

Standard Oil was accused of "predatory pricing" moving into an area, underpricing until the competition left, and then raising its prices using it's new-found monopoly power.

It was only a couple of decades ago that anyone looked at the data.

Turns out that they did indeed move in with lower prices, and that their competitors fled, but they kept the lower prices. (and why not? unlike their competitors, they were quite profitable at those prices).

hawk

Comment Re:They are also often newer (Score 1) 164

Don't look at me for sympathy :)

I bought this house in a middle class neighborhood about 30 years ago. It has degraded to lower middle class. (Hey, it makes for cheap security: noone in the neighborhood has anything worth stealing, so burglars don't bother us . . .)

I can get highspeed from Cox, may many poxes befall their house.

Centurylink, which used to be the phone company, can't deliver more than 3 mbit service here (but, gee, if I dig the trench to the street, they'll supply 8 conductor rather than 4 conductor phoneline . . .).

Bizarrely, they send an add every week or two for their Prism and high speed, even though it can't be purchased . . .

I'd take it in a heartbeat. Heck, I'd probably buy from russian hackers or the devil to get away from cox . . .

hawk

Comment Re:I hope he wins his suit (Score 1) 671

"Doctor" had a long established meaning before the modern MD in the US was concocted: a doctor was a person who had acquired significant knowledge in an area, *AND* had contributed to that body of knowledge. (It comes from the Latin verb "to teach").

The modern MD was created specifically to borrow the prestige and legitimacy of the doctors of the university at at a time when contemporary medicine was at least as likely to cause harm as to help. It created a system of training, but dropped the second prong (contribution to knowledge).

As a real doctor, I find the borrowing of my title an adequate tradeoff for the vastly improved healthcare, but I get a good laugh when a mere MD tries to distinguish that he is a "real doctor." (If he as actually published in a peer reviewed journal, or developed a new technique, he is indeed a real doctor. But they are a small minority).

MDs also like introducing themselves as "Dr. Smith"; real doctors rarely do--I've never done it outside of a classroom.

The DDS is kind of an MD knockoff with the same missing second prong.

Chiropracticy, well . . . they should only be allowed to operate under the direct supervision of real physicians, but that's another issue. "Menace" would be a better title than "Dr." for them, but I digress . . .

And as for attorneys . . . the (american) JD is actually the old LLB (Bachelor of Law). In about the 1960s, law schools started switching over, even offering replacement diplomas to their alumni. It was about some kind of parity with MD.

The LLM is a legal master's degree, almost always in tax in the US.

And then there is the LLD, the PhD equivalent, an actual doctor. These are rare, you see an occasional law school dean and so forth. And, notably, Neil Gorsuch, the newest Supreme Court Justice, holds one. (for all I know, he's the only JSD or LLD to ever sit on the court, but I haven't bothered to look, as it's really not that important).

Substantially all medical school and law school faculty have published and contributed to their bodies of knowledge.

hawk, doctor of economics & statistics

Comment Re:Damage from BASIC (Score 1) 628

This.

I used BASIC as it was what was available on the machine I was paid to write.

My BASIC, though, looked more like good FORTRAN than most basic, with thought out calls, etc.

If the language you need to use doesn't have the control structure you need, just write it.

Although I don't miss worrying about what line number to put routines at for efficiency (MBASIC until 5 or so would search through memory on a GOTO or GOSUB, making low-numbered calls faster than high-numbered).

And it's amazing that noone has pointed out the adage that a sufficiently skilled programmer can write bad FORTRAN in any language . . .

hawk

Comment Re: My experience... (Score 1) 447

I had a programming job before college (hey, it was silicon valley in the early 80s) and got called back a few months later.

They had hired an Indian with an MS, and weren't getting anywhere.

I sat down with him to work with code he didn't understand, and he was baffled by the whole "sort" concept.

I tried again at lower and lower levels, finally having to pull out some cards to physically demonstrate a bubble sort . . .

(yes, I know there are many more efficient sorts when more than a few objects are involved; that's not the point here).

hawk

Comment Re:Most of the alternatives he describes... (Score 1) 140

>does not seem to require to the latest internet fad app in order to work.

Telegraph was good enough for my grandfather, and it's good enough for me.

OK, so it takes a while to read these articles, and the bandwith is even lower than an 1149 connection, but . . .

hawk

p.s. My grandfather delivered Herbert Hoover's telegram offering him the party nomination. My father has Mrs. Hoover's thank you note to him . . .

Comment Re:Nope, I'll use he, she, they, there, their etc. (Score 1) 301

As an undergraduate, I had Set Theory class taught by Paul Halmos (yes, *that* Halmos).

On the first day, during his introductions, he suddenly veered into grammar. He addressed the ignorant statement as put forth in the quoted text above that "To recap: In English, there is no gender-neutral pronoun for a single person."

First noting that some languages have a pronoun for persons of unknown gender, he finished with "English is such a language. The word is 'he.' So you will forgive me if I do not say 'he or she' throughout this course."

He was (and remains) correct. "He" and "him" do not imply gender in English unless context indicates otherwise.

hawk

Comment Re:"glass of wine has heathful benefits" (Score 1) 125

Growing up, my grandparents had a couple of acres of zinfandel.

Each year, a winery would pay to pick & keep them, and my grandmother would go pick the late ripeners about two weeks later.

She juiced them, and canned them in mason jars.

The stuff was wonderful, heavy, and pulpy. It did, however, etch the jars . . .

Today, my father tries to see it to me every year or two, but I live a few hundred miles away. (anyone want to buy a couple of acres of northern californian zinfandel? :)

hawk

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