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Comments

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Russian Government Edits Wikipedia On Flight MH17

Guppy Re:cause and/or those responsible (662 comments)

Btw. does anyone here remember the USS Vincennes?

Funny thing, I once bought a used Science Fiction pulp novel from a used book store (up in State College, PA), sometime in the late 90's. Only later did I realize that "USS Vincennes" was stamped on one of the edges, indicating it must have come from some on-board library. It's a small world.

Anyway, to continue with your question -- yes, I remember it pretty well. And there were plenty of talking heads in the media trying to shift some of the blame onto Iran (that it must have been a martyrdom operation where Iran sacrificed it's own citizens to make us look bad, or that Iran shouldn't have operated civilian and military aircraft out of the same airport, or that the pilot should have known better than to fly on a path directly crossing that of a U.S. warship -- all bunk excuses).

But the U.S. government never denied that we were the ones who shot it down, they admitted it quickly and bluntly.

2 days ago
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Chinese-Built Cars Are Coming To the US Next Year

Guppy Re:I'll buy anything from China except food (431 comments)

At this point, a majority of the apple juice and tilapia we eat in the U.S. is now imported from China -- as well as food additives such as citric acid, sorbic acid, some vitamin additives, and artificial vanilla flavoring.

And while they haven't yet reached a majority market share, frozen spinach, garlic, mushrooms, and cod have large fractions of the supply coming from China.

about a month ago
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"Super Bananas" May Save Millions of Lives In Africa

Guppy Re:How to defend youself (396 comments)

against a man armed with a banana?

Trick Question -- he's not attacking, he's just happy to see you!

about a month ago
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Human Blood Substitute Could Help Meet Donor Blood Shortfall

Guppy Predicting the next epidemic (172 comments)

Just force all blood donors to get tested for infection, regardless of orientation, then give the clean ones a certfification with expiry. Re-test as required to continue donating.

Back in the 80's, one of the things we learned from the opening stages of the AIDS epidemic is the possibility that a new disease agent will enter the human population, sight unseen. If such a new virus were to appear, it could spread silently for years before being identified (just has HIV did).

It is this risk which had led to the exclusion of the gay population. The elevated risk for HIV infection in that population serves as a marker -- it demonstrates that they have the epidemiological risk characteristics to become the initial host for such a new disease, should it ever appear. By excluding higher-risk groups, the idea is to slow down the opening stages of the next epidemic.

about a month ago
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Report: Watch Dogs Game May Have Influenced Highway Sign Hacking

Guppy Re:Don't think the game matters (154 comments)

Fine, then. "Incoming rabid flying kitten swarm est. 20min".

about a month and a half ago
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New Valve Prototype VR Headset Shows Up At VR Meetup In Boston

Guppy Inside-Out Tracking (41 comments)

I've always wondered why you couldn't mount cameras on the outside, and instead of using markers, it would track the room itself, like an optical mouse. Processing would add a fair bit of latency, but you're mostly using the information to correct for drift and error in the gyros, right?

about 1 month ago
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HR Chief: Google Sexual, Racial Diversity "Not Where We Want to Be"

Guppy Washington Post Comment (593 comments)

From the Washington Post's Blog section: Eugene Volokh, On google's employee demographics

... non-Hispanic whites are 61 percent of the Google work force, slightly below the national average. (That average, according to 2006-10 numbers, is 67 percent.) Google is thus less white than the typical American company. White men are probably slightly over-represented; assuming that the 30 percent number it gives for women Google employees worldwide carries over to the U.S. (the article gives no separate number for U.S. women Google employees), white men are 42 percent of the Google work force, and 35 percent of the U.S. work force — not a vast disparity.
Indeed, if the goal is “reflecting the demographics of the country” as to race... ...Google can only accomplish that by firing well over three-quarters of its Asian employees, and replacing them with blacks and Hispanics (and a few whites, to bring white numbers up from 61 percent to 67 percent).

about 2 months ago
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Human "Suspended Animation" Trials To Start This Month

Guppy Re:But hold on... (104 comments)

We've run out of cake.

OH GOD We're all gonna die!

about 2 months ago
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Human "Suspended Animation" Trials To Start This Month

Guppy Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (104 comments)

saline is a very acidic substance (to the body), how will they tolerate that acidosis

Can't they just use Ringer's Lactate or Hartmann's solution instead? That should buffer the acidity a little bit better.

about 2 months ago
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Hands-On With Sony's VR Headset

Guppy I Love the PowerGlove (46 comments)

and you can hack a powerglove to work with your pc too.

but your cousin isn't going to. unless it's really, really, really really good

No, no. It's a Powerglove, you only do its because it's so Bad!

about 2 months ago
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Is It Really GPS If It Doesn't Use Satellites?

Guppy Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) (298 comments)

FYI, while GPS specifically refers to the American implementation, the generic term for a GPS-type system is a Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS). As a nationality-neutral term, it applies equally to GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, Beidou, and anything else satellite-based that might come along.

about 2 months ago
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Understanding an AI's Timescale

Guppy Will computers ever be as *fast* as us? Briefly. (189 comments)

We have never built an "AI". And in fact we have NO reason to believe -- no evidence whatsoever -- that its speed of perception and interpretation would be any faster than our own. There is a very good chance that it would be much slower... at least in the beginning.

At the beginning, yes. Eventually it might be much faster -- but your point still stands, processing speed is irrelevant because the AI could easily be designed such that it could emulate any slower speed it wished, like toggling the Turbo button on an old 286.

about 2 months ago
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Polio Causes Global Health Emergency

Guppy Franklin Roosevelt (126 comments)

That's only a problem with polio if you drink where you shit. Why should anyone living on more than 5$ per day be worried about this? Are you commonly concerned about the anal-oral route for pathogens?

Quick reminder that polio outbreaks occurred periodically in the U.S. up through the 1950's, prior to the development of effective vaccines.

Even being born to a wealthy and high-status family in the U.S. was no guarantee of safety from polio infection, as was experienced by Franklin Roosevelt, at the age of 39.

about 3 months ago
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Is There a Limit To a Laser's Energy?

Guppy Kugelblitz (135 comments)

Eventually the laser energy will create a black
hole

There is a specific term in astrophysics for such a theoretical object:

http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki...

about 3 months ago
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FCC Proposes $48,000 Fine To Man Jamming Cellphones On Florida Interstate

Guppy Cellphones also GPS Navigation Units (427 comments)

Well, he probably also ended up jamming a lot of people people using their phones as navigation units. I keep a few frequently used areas cached in Google Maps, but the rest requires me to have an active data connection.

about 3 months ago
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Aerospace Merger: ATK Joins With Orbital Sciences Corp

Guppy ATK (22 comments)

FYI: ATK Launch Systems (formerly known as Thiokol) was the prime contractor for the Space Shuttle Solid Rocket Booster, and as far as I know they mostly do solid-type rocket boosters -- which is what they are proposing for the (maybe) upcoming Space Launch System.

about 3 months ago
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Brazilians Welcome Genetically-Modified Mosquito To Help Fight Dengue Fever

Guppy Update of the Sterile Insect Technique (137 comments)

A brief primer -- this is a modern twist on the Sterile Insect Technique that has been used since the 1950's to control the Screw-worm fly, and other insect pests.

While the screw-worm's life-cycle was almost tailor-made to work with this technique (females only mate once in a lifetime; large numbers of insects can easily bred in the laboratory; sterilizing doses of radiation do not significantly cripple the males' ability to compete for mates; the males can self-distribute over a wide range), this technique proved to be harder to apply to mosquitoes (else we would have been doing it in the 1950's) -- while a few mosquito species could be controlled with this technique, irradiated Anopheles males suffered from too large a fitness drop to be effective.

Genetic engineering allows us to side-step male fitness problems that occur with radiation sterilization of mosquitoes, and improves the reliability of sterilizing large batches of reliably and efficiently.

about 3 months ago
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Implant Injects DNA Into Ear, Improves Hearing

Guppy Re:Double standard (34 comments)

Sure, but when I inject DNA into someone's ear I get put on the sex offender registry.

Aural Sex will give you Hearing AIDS.

about 3 months ago
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Experts Say Hitching a Ride In an Airliner's Wheel Well Is Not a Good Idea

Guppy Re:Survival rate under-estimated? (239 comments)

The dead body undercount is potentially detectable, if someone were to compare over-water approaches with over-land approaches; if a significant number of bodies are going missing, this should show up as a skew in the survival rate.

about 3 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Are You Apocalypse-Useful?

Guppy "Cure Sometimes, Relieve Often... Comfort Always." (737 comments)

People can survive quite well without the care of physicians.

I am not a doctor (but will be in a few more months ;)

In this matter, you are certainly correct. In the past (and in some places, even today), there were human settlements in which there has never been a doctor -- at least not in the modern sense of a doctor. And for the most part, life went on. Humans managed to be born, grow up, and grow old. Occasionally those lives might be cut a bit shorter and harder than otherwise -- but on average, these occurrences were infrequent enough that we could be assured the younger generation would survive to repeat the next turn of the cycle.

Yet, in each of those villages, you would find a healer. A shaman, a medicine-man, or maybe some weird old lady living at the edge of the settlement. Sometimes their herbs and potions would actually be useful; mystical incantations probably somewhat less so. Regardless of how primitive these healers were, they would be summoned to offer up what they could. They were a source of comfort that could be turned to, when a loved one was sick or dying. And they were also one of the few educated people (whether formal education or by traditional teachings) in the village that could be turned to for knowledge and advice (clergy being the other major source).

Many of us on Slashdot do not have families of our own, or at least that's the stereotype. We often have only a dim understanding of what illness can do to the structure and functioning of a marriage, a family, a clan, or even an entire village. When people don't understand what is happening and begin to fear, when they believe nothing can be done and begin to despair -- the social bonds that hold us together fray and rip apart. This dynamic is why healers exist and are so highly valued in society, even in a modern age where miracles are commonplace and expected to occur on demand. And why post-apocalypse, they will continue to be valued.

That being said, I would agree that some doctors would be more useful than others. Rural Medicine, Wilderness Medicine (an uncommon specialty), General Surgery, and Veterinarians would be the most immediately useful. As for the rest of us, at least all doctors go through medical school and internship, have studied anatomy and physiology, dissected cadavers and such -- it might take some retraining, but it should be possible to get at least the more adaptable ones back up to speed on how to remove an inflamed appendix or gallbladder, perform a Cesarean, or set a broken bone. As for our other skills -- the skills of compassion, comforting, and guidance -- hopefully they practice these most basic Physician's skills on a daily basis (although sadly enough, I know not all of us do).

about 3 months ago

Submissions

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Smaller Testicles correlated with Better Parenting Behavior

Guppy Guppy writes  |  about 10 months ago

Guppy (12314) writes "A recent paper appearing in PNAS (Paywalled) measured Testicular volume and Testosterone levels in fathers of children aged 1-2 years. This information was compared against parenting surveys reported by the children's mothers, as well as MRI imaging of brain activity in the men's Ventral Tegmental Area (VTA), taken while the men were viewing photographs of their children.

The results appeared consistent with past studies hinting of correlation — both Smaller Testicles and lower testosterone levels were found to correlated with both greater reported Nuturing-type behavior, as well as greater stimulated VTA activity. The authors commented that further research was required, given the limited scope of past investigations into the subject, saying "Testicular imaging is sort of a unique niche right now."

Free Summary appearing in Nature here."

Link to Original Source
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Slashdot Poll Submission: "R"

Guppy Guppy writes  |  1 year,4 days

Guppy (12314) writes " R:
  • Type
  • Project for Statistical Computing
  • Daneel Olivaw
  • Dorothy Wayneright
  • Kelly
  • "...Shiver me timbers, matey!"
"
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Tylenol may ease pain of existential distress, social rejection

Guppy Guppy writes  |  about a year ago

Guppy (12314) writes "Does Tylenol reduce existential distress? Acetaminophen (Paracetamol) has been used to relieve mild-to-moderate physical pain for over a century, yet its actual mechanism of action continues to be debated; modern research has demonstrated an intriguing connection with the body's endocannabinoid system, raising the question of whether it may also have subtle psychological effects as well. A recent paper claims Acetaminophen can alter our response to existential challenge; previous findings have suggested that it may blunt the pain of social rejection as well."
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Training an Immune System to kill Cancer: A Universal Strategy

Guppy Guppy writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Guppy writes "A previous story reported widely in the media, and appearing both on Slashdot and XKCD described a novel cancer treatment, in which a patient's own T-cells were modified using an HIV-derived vector to recognize and kill leukemia cells. In a follow-up publication, a further development is described which allows for a nearly unlimited choice of target antigens, broadening the types of malignancies potentially treatable with the technique."
Link to Original Source

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