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HPV Vaccine Recommended For Boys

Zebraheaded Re:Good (569 comments)

Oh, an on "wasted" money.

One drug I've worked on would qualify as "wasted" by your logic since its API was already on the market. However, in it's current form it requires daily injections in children from a large guage needle. My project changed it to a one-weekly injection with a smaller needle and no change in efficacy. Yeah, what a waste.

Another drug was for people with certain gastrointestinal issues. In the "on the market" form, it required the people to eat about 40 pills during a meal, every few bites of food. Our version would have reduced it to one before, one during, and one after. Yeah, such a waste. Dumb of us to develop it.

The view you're taking may be true sometimes, but it's far from being the whole truth. APIs are often repackaged so they work better or are more convenient for the patient.

more than 2 years ago
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HPV Vaccine Recommended For Boys

Zebraheaded Re:Good (569 comments)

You aren't using the data correctly.

2010 NIH Research grants awarded totaled 21 billion.

The VAST majority (16.2billion, 77%) went to higher education. 1.9 billion (9%) went to research institutes.

How much went to for-profit organizations? 853 million. Less than 5%, or in other words, less than 2% of the pharmaceutical industry's research spending.

You *could* be talking R&D contracts...but in 2010, that was only 1.5 billion for domestic for-profit. Still a far shade from half of 57 billion.

see: http://report.nih.gov/funded_organizations/index.aspx

more than 2 years ago
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HPV Vaccine Recommended For Boys

Zebraheaded Re:Good (569 comments)

What mysterious person funds the other half of R&D? Because I would love to put my company in contact with them. Granted, companies will collaborate with non-profits sometimes when researching orphan drugs or other "not-so-profitable, but needed" treatments, but it's FAR from footing half the bill.

more than 2 years ago
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HPV Vaccine Recommended For Boys

Zebraheaded Re:Good (569 comments)

So, wait a second, you want to demonize a company for focusing on things which allow it to make a profit? Does it serve my best interests that my local bookstore doesn't carry a copy of every Robert Heinlein novel? Nope. They must be evil!! Or, it's just not a profitable decision. Does it serve my best interests that the new car I bought last year wasn't available in the highest options package with a manual transmission? Nope. I wonder if they are evil, or were making a choice between profitability and the ability to satisfy everyone...

Also, at no time did I suggest that "everyone" is a self-righteous idiot. Is everyone with health insurance a fucktard? No. Do we all have to pay way more than we should have to because of the few ones who are? Yes. Hyperbole: you shouldn't use it. Well, *you* shouldn't.

Additionally, "Big Pharma" is not a simple, succinct, well-understood term. I hear that term and go "Oh, the person means the nebulous evil entitiy out to make them sicker and sicker while making them pay more and more." No one I've ever spoken to who has an in-depth knowledge of the pharmaceutical industry, whether they are against or in favor of how it operates, has used that term. Every person I've ever spoken to who uses that term has ended up basing very little of their argument on real facts and research. (no hyperbole here)

Here is where I would normally make a comment about how instead of providing an actual argumentative response to a statement, you decided to take the "grammar Nazi" route and pick out a technicality...but you already tried that and failed, so I can't really do the same without looking petty, now can I?

more than 2 years ago
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HPV Vaccine Recommended For Boys

Zebraheaded Re:Good (569 comments)

Would you prefer pharmaceutical companies (you realize the phrase 'Big Pharma' instantly saps your credibility) spend hundreds of millions of dollars to develope and commercialize non-profitable drugs so they all go out of busines and no pharmaceuticals are available at all?

or

They can spend the money only on what is profitable because our nation of "I'm right, not my doctor" self-diagnosing idiots, and "If you don't fix me even though Im not telling you all my symptoms, or I'll sue the pants off you" assholes make it necessary for FDA approval to cost so much that treatments that only "sort of work", have severe possible side effects, or aren't patentable never get released because really: who is going to take a $200million/8 year loss simply for the good of mankind? If you want that to happen, better start pumping WAY more funding into government funded research.

more than 2 years ago
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Look Ma, I'm Getting Arrested!

Zebraheaded Modifiers? (238 comments)

For accuracy, the app should also notify them of what you were actually doing during your "peaceful demonstration" which caused the arrest:

"John was arrested for...spitting on an officer...while peacefully demonstrating."

"John was arrested for...trespassing on private property...while peacfully demonstrating."

"John was arrested for...impeding access of emergency vehicles...while peacfully demonstrating."

more than 2 years ago
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Looking For E-Ink Applications Beyond Ebook Readers

Zebraheaded Flash Drive Capacity (161 comments)

It's simple and of very little actual use, but I like the Lexar flash drives which have the E-Ink capacity meter on the side.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Project Scope For MLB Robot Umpires?

Zebraheaded Re:The strike zone *is* subjective, though. (141 comments)

An umpire will determine what your actual stance is. If I stay crouched down in a full squat during pitches I take, but bounce up straight in a swing, that is what the umpire will use to determine my strike zone, not the squat. The robot cannot do this.

Of course the robot can do that. It would be a trivial problem (by image-recognition/analysis standards) to program the robot to consider how the player's stance changed over time before and after the pitch.

The umpire *can*, however, say "Hey, you're being an asshole and squatting, and that is not your true strike zone, I'm calling anything even close a strike." which is the right thing to do.

I bet you already know what I'm going to say here. It would be easy for the robot to keep a record of previous at-bats and analyze them appropriately.

Actually they can, it's called 'thinking'.

Umm, no one is planning to ask the array of cameras and image-analysis software to write a 50 page essay on the nature of love, or anything else that requires any sort of complex, critical thought. Everything that it would need to do would be a (relatively) simply matter of heuristic image analysis and statistics.

See , you have no idea what you're talking about here. Determining a strike zone *does* require complex/critical thought if you're going to do it correctly. If it's not complex and critical, it's being done wrong.

On the stances you missed the entire point. Historical analysis will tell you almost nothing about the current stance. For example, Cal Ripken Jr. He had a different stance legitimately almost every at-bat. He would tailor it to the situation and what he hoped to accomplish. Historical analysis would do nothing to determine the validity of his stance. So unless the robot had a Cal Ripken switch, all your magical heuristics would fail.

Even if they got the robot to "sort of" work, players would figure out how to game the robot, and the moment that happens in a big game, everyone would be clamoring for real live umpires again.

It would *never* work. It boggles my mind that people think a robot could even do a passable job, let alone a better one that we currently get.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Project Scope For MLB Robot Umpires?

Zebraheaded Re:Everyone said it would ruin tennis... (141 comments)

The difference is that Pete Sampras, John McEnroe, and Rafael Nadal all have the same tennis court. Out for one is out for all.

John Rauch (6'11") and Dustin Pedroia (5'8") do not have the same strike zone, though. Hell, Dustin Pedroia could have five different correct strike zones over the course of a single game.

The strike zone is subjective, the tennis court is not. That's the difference.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Project Scope For MLB Robot Umpires?

Zebraheaded Re:The strike zone *is* subjective, though. (141 comments)

What if the robot can't see the top of my pants? (My shirt is loose and blouses over)

Then the umpire can't either. If the umpire can infer the location of the top of the strike zone, so can the robot.

The umpire can see where the top of your pants is when you walk up to bat, when you stretch before a pitch, etc. He defines "about" where it is. The robot has to know "exactly" where it is. There's a huge difference there.

What if my shoulders are angled? (Where's the 'top'?)

Umpires apply a heuristic to solve this problem. So will the robot.

No, he'll determine which shoulder is dominant for your stance through his experience of the game and knowledge of your swing.

What if I have loose pants and a locked knee stance? (Where's my knee, and thus the hollow below the cap?)

Umpires apply a heuristic to solve this problem. So will the robot.

The umpire will know from when you walk up where your knees are. He'll identify a spot of dirt, a loose thread, or just remember where your knee is.

When does the robot determine the boundaries of the zone? (If it's at the windup, I'll crouch during it then stand up. If it's as the pitch comes in, I'll squat on high strikes)

Over the same time range that umpires do. It is not clear why you are insisting arbitrarily and without any reason whatsoever that the robot must determine the boundaries of the zone from a single time-point. Is that the way umpires do it? If not, why would you insist that a robot do it that way, rather than doing what umpires do? And no, "umpires do something mysterious and magical that can't be captured by heuristics" is not an argument: it is a baseless and probably false assertion.

Again, incorrect. An umpire will determine what your actual stance is. If I stay crouched down in a full squat during pitches I take, but bounce up straight in a swing, that is what the umpire will use to determine my strike zone, not the squat. The robot cannot do this. If I take the first pitch while in the crouch, the robot cannot know what my strike zone is during my swing. It cannot go back to a previous at-bat either because stances change, what was a strike yesterday is not necessarily a strike today. The umpire *can*, however, say "Hey, you're being an asshole and squatting, and that is not your true strike zone, I'm calling anything even close a strike." which is the right thing to do. Is the robot ump going to call balks? Is it going to determine intention on pitches hitting batters? If it can't do those things, and you need an ump anyway, then why have the robot? Also: "umpires do something mysterious and magical that can't be captured by heuristics" is not an argument: it is a baseless and probably false assertion. Actually they can, it's called 'thinking'.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Project Scope For MLB Robot Umpires?

Zebraheaded Re:The strike zone *is* subjective, though. (141 comments)

I'm aware of this. My point though is how would the robot do this? Do the batter have a 1-ft bubble around him, and if that bubble touches the bag the runner is out? What if using that 1-ft bubble was the only way the fielder could have beaten the runner to the bag? Does the robot have the ability to identify that and make the correct call?

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Project Scope For MLB Robot Umpires?

Zebraheaded Re:The strike zone *is* subjective, though. (141 comments)

and my formatting broke. shit where's my coffee? The official rule:

Strike Zone is the area over home plate, the upper limit of which is a horizontal line at the midpoint between the top of the shoulders and the top of the uniform pants, and the lower level is a line at the hollow beneath the knee cap. The Strike Zone shall be determined from the batter’s stance as the batter is prepared to swing at a pitched ball.

What if the robot can't see the top of my pants? (My shirt is loose and blouses over)
What if my shoulders are angled? (Where's the 'top'?)
What if I have loose pants and a locked knee stance? (Where's my knee, and thus the hollow below the cap?)
When does the robot determine the boundaries of the zone? (If it's at the windup, I'll crouch during it then stand up. If it's as the pitch comes in, I'll squat on high strikes)

A living, breathing umpire makes all these subjective decisions on every pitch. There's no way to trick the umpire into giving you a smaller or undefined strike zone.

You have to keep umpires, even if there's instant replay.

For another example: on a large fraction of 6-4-3 and 4-6-3 double plays, the infielder making the play at second base doesn't actually tag the bag. Umpires are very generous on the player touching the base on the turn. Relying on a robot to make that call would be incredibly disruptive with the way that call has been made for over a century.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Project Scope For MLB Robot Umpires?

Zebraheaded The strike zone *is* subjective, though. (141 comments)

(goddamn it, I wasn't logged in) The official rule: Strike Zone is the area over home plate, the upper limit of which is a horizontal line at the midpoint between the top of the shoulders and the top of the uniform pants, and the lower level is a line at the hollow beneath the knee cap. The Strike Zone shall be determined from the batter’s stance as the batter is prepared to swing at a pitched ball. What if the robot can't see the top of my pants? (My shirt is loose and blouses over) What if my shoulders are angled? (Where's the 'top'?) What if I have loose pants and a locked knee stance? (Where's my knee, and thus the hollow below the cap?) When does the robot determine the boundaries of the zone? (If it's at the windup, I'll crouch during it then stand up. If it's as the pitch comes in, I'll squat on high strikes) A living, breathing umpire makes all these subjective decisions on every pitch. There's no way to trick the umpire into giving you a smaller or undefined strike zone. You have to keep umpires, even if there's instant replay. For another example: on a large fraction of 6-4-3 and 4-6-3 double plays, the infielder making the play at second base doesn't actually tag the bag. Umpires are very generous on the player touching the base on the turn. Relying on a robot to make that call would be incredibly disruptive with the way that call has been made for over a century.

more than 2 years ago
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Measles Resurgent Due To Fear of Vaccination

Zebraheaded Re:Car analogy time (668 comments)

Actually, he was wearing his seatbelt, and it snapped. After which he was flung from the car before it smashed into a tree. Additionally, it happened while he was in high school, so it would have effected our ability to have ep4-6 as well...and I will any day of the week gladly accept ep1-3 if the alternative is no ep4-6 either.

more than 2 years ago
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Drug Companies Lose Special Protection On Facebook

Zebraheaded Re:Be the first to Like this big pharmaceutical! (181 comments)

The problem isnt suppressing people from talking about negative side effects, it's that they need to be suppressed from doing it "like this". Legally, as an employee of a pharmaceutically company, I am required to report when I hear by any means of a side-effect, defect, or off-label use of one of the products manufactured by my company. The company would prefer these complaints to be filtered by doctors, not come directly from consumers. We need to spend our time investigating "My patient used drug X while taking acetominophen, and experienced heart murmurs." not "I took drug drug X and now my leg hurts real bad. (but I didnt tell you about when I fucked my leg up playing softball last weekend)." I can easily imagine many people going "My doctor told me it was all the hamburgers I eat causing my heart pain...but I think it's the anti-excema meds I take...Im going to complain on Facebook because people need to know!" Then the company ends up having to investigate a baseless claim, and improper information gets disseminated via the internet because people wil believe anyone that says "Big Pharma doesnt want you to know!"

more than 2 years ago
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California DNA Collection Law Struck Down

Zebraheaded Re:Suspicion comes before arrest? (192 comments)

"... no more suspicion that you are guilty of a crime than he would be suspicious of any other random person." I wasn't aware that "random" was the criteria for making felony arrests.

more than 2 years ago
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California DNA Collection Law Struck Down

Zebraheaded Re:Suspicion comes before arrest? (192 comments)

There is absolutely no assumption of guilt involved with this. Your fingerprints, your properties, your vehicles...all these exist in databases which the polica already search through without any assumption of your guilt or innocence. This is no different. Go bitch about those databases if you're going to bitch about this one. There is nothing to fear in having your DNA on file unless you have something to fear already.

more than 2 years ago
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California DNA Collection Law Struck Down

Zebraheaded Re:Suspicion comes before arrest? (192 comments)

What happens when there's an amber alert? Shit! The police search through car registrations for a match. I'm being searched without suspicion!

more than 2 years ago

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