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What the Insurance Industry Thinks About Climate Change

tfocker4 Re: You would trust insurance companies on this? (385 comments)

FEMA has been simulating hypothetical storms to evaluate risk since the 1970s. And you argue that insurance companies, who are at least as clever, are going to rely on sparse records of extreme events? As a person who does this sort of modeling, trust me, no one who is in the black puts much confidence in historical data.

about a year ago

The Cognitive Cost of Poverty

tfocker4 Not very robust (459 comments)

Looking at the methodology of this study, it's not very robust. I generally believe that the state of poverty is a complex mix of one's surroundings and own choices. But this really isn't very convincing. The poor people in the study could easily have more trouble with the question because if your car is worth less (probable for poorer people), then deciding whether to scrap the car in an expensive repair is harder to figure out. Plus, the authors suggest that the poor are constantly under this cognitive strain, yet the study itself showed that they do ok so long as they aren't (at that moment) dealing with a difficult financial decision. Very weak proof if you ask me. Here are the study's details: researchers performed two sets of experiments. In the first, about 400 randomly chosen people in a New Jersey mall were asked how they would respond to a scenario where their car required either $150 or $1,500 in repairs. Would they pay for the work in full, take out of a loan, or put off the repair? How would they make that decision? The subjects varied in annual income from $20,000 to $70,000.Before responding, the subjects were given a series of common tests (identifying sequences of shapes and numbers, for example) measuring cognitive function and fluid intelligence. In the easier scenario, where the hypothetical repair cost only $150, subjects classified as âoepoorâ and âoerichâ performed equally well on these tests. But the âoepoorâ subjects performed noticeably worse in the $1,500 scenario. Simply asking these people to think about financial problems taxed their mental bandwidth.

1 year,1 hour

Qualcomm Says Eight-Core Processors Are Dumb

tfocker4 Re: The Onion said it best (526 comments)

Ahahaha. My God where are my mod points!?!

1 year,29 days

Data Storage That Could Outlast the Human Race

tfocker4 it's so rare (231 comments)

That i don't understand half of an article but am still completely blown away. Well done smart research people, well done.

about a year ago

NTSB Recommends Lower Drunk Driving Threshold Nationwide: 0.05 BAC

tfocker4 Re: No (996 comments)

I'm not doubting you, but I'd be very interested to see a reference for that statement. Love to read up more on it.

about a year ago

NTSB Recommends Lower Drunk Driving Threshold Nationwide: 0.05 BAC

tfocker4 But where do we stop? (996 comments)

Certainly, like most things, there is a limit to the value of the regulation. We know that hands free cell phone usage is still dangerous while driving but we don't outlaw it because using a cell phone while driving is too valuable. What about drinking and driving? Yes, 0.01% can still affect driving, but regulating to that level just isn't worth the burden it puts on people. So where is the cutoff? Is 0.05% already too low, just right, or not low enough?

about a year ago

How Would an Astronaut Falling Into a Black Hole Die?

tfocker4 My new hobby (412 comments)

Bringing up old physics thought experiments in order to throw the quantum mechanics community into an intellectual crisis.

about a year ago

New Zealand Frontline Police Get Apple Devices in Efficiency Measure

tfocker4 in other news (114 comments)

New Zealand police outfits changing to black turtlenecks and jeans in cost saving measure. Chief quoted saying traditional black with warm/cold weather turtlenecks and rugged jeans are an ideal pair. New Zealand police now driving Porsches as cost saving measure. Chief quoted saying they can cover twice the distance in half the time. New Zealand police adding all-aluminum ships to coastal fleet. Chief quoted saying this is actually a terrible idea... New Zealand police now recognize Opposite Day as official holiday.

about a year and a half ago

Ask Slashdot: Buying a Laptop That Doesn't Have Windows 8

tfocker4 tigerdirect (570 comments)

Nuff said.

about a year and a half ago

The Mobile App Design Tail Wags the Desktop Software Design Dog

tfocker4 causation = correlation? (183 comments)

So because since their inception, computers have continuously refined their interfaces to be simpler, we ate to assume that current trends are driven by mobile devices? Does the op remember the original google page (long before mobile was a big deal)? 5 year old children draw more complex illustrations. And are we to assume this is a good thing? The tech savvy would say no, give me buttons and drop down menus filled with features. Mobile displays ate simplistic because screen space is a luxury, not because it's a good thing.

about a year and a half ago

Male Scientists More Prone To Misconduct

tfocker4 sample size, anyone? (300 comments)

If we're to argue that 9 females is enough to judge the entire population by, then we might want to tell every statistician that they're wrong about, well, everything.

about a year and a half ago

Inside an Amazon Warehouse

tfocker4 Re:True key to success (206 comments)

Aww man, that's what I was gonna sayyyyyy!

about 2 years ago

US Congressman Wants To Ban New Internet Laws

tfocker4 On moratoria (205 comments)

What if a moratorium was added, by default, to all but the most important laws the first time they were passed? This could make it mandatory to review the worth of a law after it has been in effect for a while. If deemed worthwhile, being passed a second time could make it permanent. Certainly this would have huge downsides, but many benefits. It might decrease the amount of stale legislation and could allow the benefits of hindsight to be incorporated into the second version of laws deemworthy of re-passing. But, it would significantly increase Congress' workload, likely causing them to be unable to get as much done, and there's no guarantee that "bad" laws wouldn't be passed a second time while "good" laws would. Anyway, just a thought.

about 2 years ago

Hands-On With Intel's "Next Unit of Computing" Mini PC

tfocker4 i was almost excited (177 comments)

Until I saw the price tag. Comparing those specs to a tablet or laptop, this is a pricey machine without an OS or monitor. I suppose I can see a market for this as a compact personal server, but still, no ethernet? I'm just not clear what market they are targeting with this.

about 2 years ago

Activists' Drone Shot Out of the Sky For Fourth Time

tfocker4 Re:hunting? (733 comments)

Puppies? Checkmate.

about 2 years ago

How Can Wikipedia's Visual Editor Top Other Word Processors?

tfocker4 My thesis took months to write (196 comments)

...because writing equations in Word takes years, and auto-numbering the equations is impossible

about 2 years ago

US Justice Dept. Sues eBay For Anti-Competitive Hiring Practices

tfocker4 What about joint ventures? (66 comments)

My firm is in a joint venture with another, and they explicitly will not hire each others' employees while partnered. Anyone familiar with what the law says in such a case?

about 2 years ago

Google Wants To Be a Wireless Carrier

tfocker4 to summarize... (151 comments)

Hooray for more competition in a Marley with absurd profits. Boo that it's google because they're even more monolithic than the smartphone market.

about 2 years ago

Kim Dotcom's Next Venture: Free Broadband To New Zealand

tfocker4 in other news (279 comments)

I plan on building a free airport, which will travel to every other international hub in the world. It will be funded by my leprechaun-catching business.

about 2 years ago

Climbing 103 Floors On a 'Bionic' Leg

tfocker4 No, (117 comments)

Thank you anonymous reader. No one could rightfully call you an anonymous coward.

about 2 years ago


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