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Mt. Gox Ordered Into Liquidation

sirwired You Insensitive Nazi Clod! (43 comments)

By glorifying MtGox's collapse, you have shown yourself to be a Thuggish Tool Of The Oppressor! You would have made Hitler and his minions proud with your slavish dedication to the status quo.

Maybe you should open your eyes to the real world instead of digging yourself into a bunker of group-think as part of the great mass of sheeple and perpetuating hysteria and hype.

(c) All Politically Frothy Slashdot Commenters, MMXIV, All Rights Reserved

yesterday
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The Amoeba That Eats Human Intestines, Cell By Cell

sirwired Seriously? (70 comments)

Often, the tests for intestinal parasites (usually from a series of stool samples) don't actually work. While false positives are rare, false negatives are quite common.

Given that cancer is usually an actual tumor (or, at the least, something that is blindingly obvious on a microscope slide), the odds of getting treated for cancer when you really had a parasite is pretty much zero.

And likewise, the flu has pretty distinctive symptoms (and a somewhat reliable test) that you are unlikely to be treated for influenza but be suffering from a parasite.

A mandatory test for any given parasite would be a fantastically expensive waste of money for relatively little benefit. And of course there are a crazy number of parasites it's possible to infect a human with; which ones do you test for?

about a week ago
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Intel and SGI Test Full-Immersion Cooling For Servers

sirwired Those numbers are complete B.S. (101 comments)

Air cooling is inefficient, but it's not so horrible that that inefficiency alone accounts for 90% of data center power usage. Heat is heat, and Watts is Watts; they gotta go somewhere.

And the "tons of water" that data centers use is generally used to spray the outdoor condenser (think cooling tower at a power plant); changing the servers to liquid cooling won't fix that.

Liquid cooling makes less sense for smaller servers, as going to all the trouble to plumb a pizza box is generally more trouble than it's worth. Big Iron is already frequently liquid cooled, if not in an immersion bath.

about a week ago
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Australia Declares Homeopathy Nonsense, Urges Doctors to Inform Patients

sirwired That's not what homeopathy says (408 comments)

I didn't say that prevention was bad vs. treatment. I'm just saying that the statement by these clowns directly contradicts what homeopathy is supposedly about. They likely made this ridiculous statement because unsupported woo-woo is what you resort to when actual science says your "medicine" is a steaming pile of B.S.

If you actually read information about homeopathy, it makes no vague wishy-washy claims about "overall health and wellness", it's all about treating specific symptoms. There are very detailed reference works (referred to as "provings") listing which specific "remedies" are to be used for this or that symptom. (In the U.S., remedies listed in the Homeopathic Pharmacopeia of the United States are specifically exempted from FDA regulations regarding efficacy.)

In this sense, Homeopathy is very different from "natural remedies" at least in the US. In the US, natural remedies that have not gone through the drug approval process cannot claim to treat specific diseases and must make vague claims about health and wellness. Because of their very specific legal loophole, homeopathy need jump through no such hoops; they can claim to treat all manner of illnesses.

(When this loophole for homeopathy was written back in the '30's, giving homeopathy a free ride was actually a good thing, as water was generally quite a bit healthier than many of the "drugs" available at the time, which made liberal use of all manner of horribly toxic substances.)

Homeopathy may be commonly prescribed by people claiming to practice "holistic medicine", but that is independent from homeopathy itself.

about a week ago
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Australia Declares Homeopathy Nonsense, Urges Doctors to Inform Patients

sirwired You know what thay call "alt medicine" that works? (408 comments)

Haven't you heard the joke?

What do you call "Alternative Medicine" that's actually supported via good evidence?

Medicine.

There's nothing controversial about the idea that certain herbs and natural substances, diet changes, etc. can treat illness. A doctor that doesn't use all the evidence-based approaches at his disposal is simply a bad doctor. A doctor that does use evidence-supported natural-based remedies as appropriate isn't practicing "alternative medicine", he/she is simply being a better doctor.

The idea of using porcine-derived thyroid hormone isn't "alternative medicine" at all... you can get a prescription for it and have it filled at any pharmacy; the brand name is "Armour Thyroid". I'll certainly take an FDA-approved Rx procine thyroid over some unregulated junk at the local Health Food store.

about a week ago
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Australia Declares Homeopathy Nonsense, Urges Doctors to Inform Patients

sirwired Wow, that's some high-grade B.S. there! (408 comments)

" 'What they have looked at is systematic trials for named conditions when that is not how homeopathy works,' he said. Homeopathy worked on the principle of improving a person's overall health and wellness."

Wait a minute, Homeopath is only good for "overall health and wellness" but can't actually cure named diseases? I thought that was, in fact, the exact opposite of the "science" of homeopathy... I thought the way it worked is that you treated "named conditions" by ingesting a ridiculously diluted amount of a natural substance that causes the same symptoms. (i.e. treat hyperactivity with crazy-diluted caffeine) And that there were vast tomes available that map specific symptoms to specific "remedies". That's kind of the opposite of improving only "overall health and wellness."

about a week ago
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New Service Lets You Hitch a Ride With Private Planes For Cost of Tank of Gas

sirwired No, No, No. (269 comments)

The chance of dying with a commercial airline flight is miniscule. The mortality statistics for private pilots are about on par with motorcycling; that's a huge difference.

about two weeks ago
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60 Minutes Dubbed Engines Noise Over Tesla Model S

sirwired This is how video production works (544 comments)

Unless the camera is pointed at somebody's face or the segment is live, very little "live" sound is ever used on TV or in the movies. Even from nice microphones, the audio from a "field" rig is rarely good enough to use in a broadcast when you don't have to. (Many movies make extensive of "Additional Dialog Recording", where the actors essentially dub their own dialog so it can use dialog from a sound studio instead of the set.)

It would not surprise me if the editor, when needing some "car moving" footage didn't even have the audio turned on in his editing console... and just had his library of stock sound effects ready to splice in.

about two weeks ago
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Jimmy Wales To 'Holistic Healers': Prove Your Claims the Old-Fashioned Way

sirwired The plural of 'anecdote' is not 'data' (517 comments)

An anecdote serves, at best, a rough start in forming a hypothesis. But an anecdote is utterly useless outside of that context.

about three weeks ago
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Goodbye, Google Voice

sirwired "Enormous" effect? (166 comments)

Google Voice is a rather tiny product that a relatively small portion of the user base ever uses. Which is good, because they'd almost certainly kill it if it did take off, since it makes pretty much no revenue, and almost certainly loses quite a bit of money per user. (Really, I'm not sure why they keep it going at all... I don't even see a glimmer of a viable business plan here.)

I really doubt anything Google does to Google Voice (including simply pulling the plug) would have an "enormous" amount of bad PR.

about a month ago
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Conservation Communities Takes Root Across US

sirwired What a joke (116 comments)

16 acres of water-thirsty crops outside Phoenix in a development with 452 homes? This isn't a farm, (much less something you could call a "conservation community") it's landscaping that happens to produce something you can eat. Better than a golf-course, I suppose, but still a bit "slacktivist."

about a month ago
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Mt. Gox Knew It Was Selling Phantom Bitcoin 2 Weeks Before Collapse

sirwired When you asked for it and they couldn't provide (263 comments)

Well, when this happens to an actual bank, you have $5k up until the day the bank stops paying withdrawals, at which point you have some amount less than $5k. How much less is determined by value of the assets that remain on the books, which is usually much higher than $0. When an FDIC-insured bank fails, usually depositors eventually recover some amount over 90% of their uninsured assets as the government "winds down" the bank by selling off the loans at market value and distributing the proceeds.

Without regulation? I suppose how much in the way of assets they have left to portion out to depositors just depends on how long their cash or credit reserves last... All Mt. Gox had was what a banker would call "reserves", and they ran those down to $0 before shutting the doors. In that case, you have $5k up until the point they couldn't pay out withdrawals, at which point it instantly went from $5k to $0.

about a month ago
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Meat Makes Our Planet Thirsty

sirwired Math doesn't add up (545 comments)

If it takes 4M gallons of water to produce one ton of beef, I'd think my water savings by swapping out half my meat product consumption with vegetables would save a LOT more than 30% of my water footprint, if the figures for water consumption by vegetables are also accurate.

I think their numbers for vegetables are good, but the numbers for cattle are WAY overblown. According to helpful calculations provided by the USGS, "You would need to build a pool about 267 feet long (almost as long as a football field), 50 feet wide, and 10 feet deep" to hold 1M gallons. The idea that it takes four of those (weighing a total of 16,000 tons) to produce a single ton of beef is beyond belief. I know forage crops are not always the most water-efficient, and cattle feed isn't the most efficient use of crops, but it's not THAT bad.

about a month ago
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Is Traffic Congestion Growing Three Times As Fast As Economy?

sirwired How is unemployment a "political fiction"? (187 comments)

Of all the economic statistics, the unemployment rate is the easiest to understand. The Bureau of Labor Statistics calls or visit a randomly selected sample of Americans, ask them if they are employed, and if they are not, are they looking for a job. While they ask some other questions, those are the basic ones used to determine the widely-publicized unemployment rate. This is not a complicated statistical formula here, subject to all sorts of evil manipulation.

Now, you could argue that the labor participation rate is more useful, or perhaps include people that aren't working as many hours as they'd like, or include people that would like to work, but have given up looking. And they publish those numbers also for any that care to read them, so you can hardly argue that they are a big secret that The Man is trying to hide from you. But it's silly to call any of them "fictitious." And these formulas hardly seem "politically derived." (In fact, the BLS and their counterparts in the GAO are quite fiercely independent; the statisticians are all civil servants that don't really give a *bleep!* what congress or the president want the numbers to end up at.)

Inflation is much the same way; they publish numbers that are perhaps not as useful as we'd like them to be, but they have proven to be pretty free of political whims. It's a drawn-out, very public, process to fiddle with those formulas. If there was a hint that they were bowing to political pressure when calculating them, you'd know about it.

about a month ago
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Bitcoin Inventor Satoshi Nakamoto Outed By Newsweek

sirwired But he didn't actually hide (390 comments)

If he had called himself by some sort of clever pseudonym, that might make sense. But going by your birth name isn't exactly stealthy... name changes are part of public record.

He didn't exactly give press releases as Mr. BitCoin, but that's not the same thing as trying to stay anonymous. Unheralded yes, anonymous, no.

about a month ago
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Bitcoin Inventor Satoshi Nakamoto Outed By Newsweek

sirwired I wasn't aware this was unethical... (390 comments)

I was not aware it was inherently considered unethical journalism to uncover those who wish to remain anonymous. Peeling back anonymity can help shed light on the reasons somebody does what they did. Background, motiviations, current involvement, etc. are certainly newsworthy things to examine.

And why is his life in danger?

about a month ago
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'Obnoxious' RSA Protests, RSA Remains Mum

sirwired Seriously? (99 comments)

"Plain old tech" people get paid conference passes all the time. Your company buys X amount of stuff from Y vendor (or a business partner), the vendor account rep provides your company with Z full conference passes gratis, and most of those passes end up in the hand of front-line IT grunts (they are the ones most of the education classes are targeted for.) These grunts are no more likely to be familiar with the particular facts of what they were getting interrogated on than any other geek.

Also, it IS a tech conference; RSA just happens to be a security vendor; pretty much every single large tech vendor runs one of these conferences. A "security conference" would be something like DEFCON, one of the several conferences the IEEE runs on security, etc.

And quit with your paranoia about how much RSA is bribing me. I work from home, so it'd be pretty tough for RSA to buy me lunch. The organization I work for (part of a larger IT company) is not an RSA customer. Not everyone that voices vocal disagreement is a sock-puppet; I thought the whole point of the Slashdot comment section was to comment.

All my so-called "pro-RSA" talk on this topic has been motivated by the obnoxious tactics of these protestors, and the knee-jerk silence-equals-guilty attitude. You'd get the same reaction from me if this was a story about PETA sticking microphones in the face of somebody trying to buy some chicken for dinner.

about a month and a half ago
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Tim Cook: If You Don't Like Our Energy Policies, Don't Buy Apple Stock

sirwired He told AN owner to *bleep!* off (348 comments)

Tim Cook told a single owner to go *bleep!* himself. The shareholders as a whole voted specifically on this resolution, and rejected it.

about a month and a half ago
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MtGox Files For Bankruptcy Protection

sirwired That's real interesting math (465 comments)

$0.5B in BtC's are missing (not all deposits), but they only have liabilities of $60M?

Cute. Are they somehow magically not on the hook for all that missing dough?

If they were a bank, deposits are supposed to be counted as part of your liabilities.

about a month and a half ago
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'Obnoxious' RSA Protests, RSA Remains Mum

sirwired Not all contracts are public (99 comments)

The defense and intelligence parts of the budget have very large parts that are a "black box". As well they should be. It's a bit difficult to carry out secret projects if all your contracts are open to anybody that wants to read them.

Yes, such contracts are vulnerable to abuse and oversight problems. But that doesn't mean that the RSA even has the ability to release the contract if they wanted to.

about 1 month ago

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