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Mitchell Tsai › Comments

Mitchell Tsai
Global Study: Kids Today Are In Worse Shape Than Their Parents Were [Marilynn Marchione, AP, Business Insider - 11/20/13] -
Global Study: Kids Today Are In Worse Shape Than Their Parents Were [Marilynn Marchione, AP, Business Insider - 11/20/13]
It takes children 90 seconds longer to run a mile (1.6 kilometer) than their counterparts did 30 years ago. Heart-related fitness has declined 5 percent per decade since 1975 for children ages 9 to 17. (American Heart Association conference featured the research on Tuesday) - - Mitchell Tsai from Bookmarklet
Considering the kids' parents are my generation's children, and we were told the same thing when we were kids, I am not surprised. Back then they blamed it on cars and TV. - m9m, Crone of FriendFeed
It's a gradual thing in the developed world. With each generation we seem to get more sedentary. - Spidra Webster
Mitchell Tsai
The evolution of beauty: Face the facts, What makes for a beautiful visage, and why, may have been discovered accidentally on a Russian fur farm [Economist - 11/16/13] -
The evolution of beauty: Face the facts, What makes for a beautiful visage, and why, may have been discovered accidentally on a Russian fur farm [Economist - 11/16/13]
Dmitry Belyaev tried to breed silver foxes to make them tamer and thus easier for farmers to handle. He found the animals’ coats developed patches of colour; their ears became floppy; their skulls became rounded and foreshortened; their faces flattened; their noses got stubbier; and their jaws shortened, thus crowding their teeth. - Mitchell Tsai from Bookmarklet
Bret Taylor
You can now get a daily or weekly email digest for anybody's feed on FriendFeed. You'll get a daily or weekly email with the most popular posts from that person's feed. To get the email, click the "Email/IM" link at the top of anyone's feed, and select the "Best of day" or "Best of week" email option.
Picture 11.png
You can see all of your email settings at - Bret Taylor
Thanks Bret! :) - Matt Ruiz
Thanks to Kevin for doing a great design for what turned out to be a more complex set of UI options than we had originally anticipated, and thanks to Tudor for implementing the email backend. - Bret Taylor
Great! Thanks! Love FF! - Scott Monaco
I now get the FriendFeed Feedback posts as a Best of Day email so it doesn't fill up my feed, but I don't miss feedback. I also set up a "Best of Day" email for my "Technology people" friend list so I get a pretty good overview of tech news every day via email. - Bret Taylor
This is a really cool idea Bret, I wish you can make that an RSS feed option as well. I'd be much more likely to read summaries in RSS than in email. - manielse (Mark Nielsen)
Lovely. Thanks guys. - Mitchell Tsai
Casey: Thanks for the tip. What's the 7 before the "?" mean in the URL? The number of likes or replies needed to be included? - manielse (Mark Nielsen)
this is killer, the random influx of email during the day was kinda getting fail-ish. I love the daily digest. - Drew Lucas
Very cool! Any way to get archives of previous months? (especially helpful for those of us who leave the internet for weeks at a time...) - Mitchell Tsai
WOW. that's really helpful! - K.D.
Looks like a great addition for those who are not embedded on the site. Nice intro. - Louis Gray
Cool! - Josh Haley
Ahsan: it is somewhat random right now when the emails are sent, but we built in the backend capability to control what time they are sent, and we plan on exposing that control to users in the future. Right now, it is kind of random - sorry! - Bret Taylor
Cool! can i get a daily or weekly email digest for the "Saved searches"? - 0M0M from email
This will be incredibly useful. Thanks to all involved in the design and execution. - Kathy Fitch
Nice addition! - Michael Fidler
But what exactly is "Best"? Is it anything that has a certain number of likes/comments? - Laura Norvig
@Bret LOL THAT WAS MY PROJECT! I will release it tomorrow. But you've also did it and killed my friendfeed application **sigh** But mine has multi-reporting weekly-daily-monthly at the same time and adjustable entry count! - Alp
@Bret please consolidate me or I won't code new apps with you api! :-) - Alp
Alp: we were not trying to withhold data. Later today the documentation will be updated to reflect the ability to obtain "Best of" for users. The feed id will be USERNAME/summary/N (similar to "Best of" for lists) - Benjamin Golub
Hi Ben, that is pretty funny, I tried that URL earlier today to see if it has been secretly released :) - Paul Kinlan
Bret: While Twitter struggle to keep their fail whale under control, you guys are developing stuff like this. Amazing - Thanks! - Jim Connolly
awesome feature, this will be highly useful for my corporate group ideas / content sharing; projects, etc.... THANK YOU :) - Susan Beebe
Great work. I especially like that it works on lists too. - Meryn Stol
my inbox might say different, but I like that :-) - Dobromir Hadzhiev
Wow, this is really neat! And it links into the idea I expressed earlier, re: reducing signup friction / enabling limited guest privileges. Imagine if I could embed one of my FF rooms on my personal web site, and enable people to subscribe to that feed by e-mail with just a couple of clicks... rather than saying "you can get e-mail notifications but you have to sign up for Friendfeed first." "sign up" -- though admirably lightweight on FF -- is still a huge barrier. - Adam Lasnik
is there a love button cause I dont like this option I LOVE this option..great work guys - (jeff)isageek
Three options I would like (1) Can I select "top 100" instead of "top 30"? (2) Could I select both "best of day" and "best of week"? (3) How about older timeperiods? I'd love to get an e-mail with stuff from last week or Mar 2009? Start & end dates? Anything to help me read FriendFeed off-line would be great since I spend long periods off-line at festivals (especially during summer time) or overseas. - Awesome job guys! - Mitchell Tsai
So this works on groups too, cool! But we still cannot see Best of for groups on the site on friends lists. :-( I have several friends lists that include just groups and when I select to view the best of the page it's empty (even though if I got to the individual best of for those groups there are entries there). - Kol Tregaskes
does anyone know of a web service that can do this? (I'm thinking weekly email updates of my favorite feeds/people) I don't think there's anything like friendfeed .. - Franc, a rememberer
That's a cool feature - Xitong Liu
Emails no longer get sent except for Subscriptions. The last non-sub email I recieved was July 15th, 2011. - Not Me
I still get them. - AJ Batac
I get these every day. - Me
i get it - solncee
I still get it - AJ Batac
*jealous* I no longer get anything but subscription emails. - Bruce Lewis
Following US Politics that way ever since and the emails always went through: so happy this never went off course and kept a valuable record of these threads. - Zu from AOD
vay - kotak
unutmadık :) - alperyz
Mitchell Tsai
The Bottom Billion - Paul Collier - Books - Review [Niall Ferguson, New York Times - 7/1/07] -
Africa's economic future - On one side of the argument is Jeffrey D. Sachs, the director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University and the author of “The End of Poverty.” On the other is William Easterly of New York University, whose ironically titled “White Man’s Burden” lampoons Sachs as a modern version of a 19th-century utopian. - Mitchell Tsai
Collier who pointed out that nearly two-fifths of Africa’s private wealth is held abroad, much of it in Swiss bank accounts. - Mitchell Tsai
Collier’s title refers to the 980 million people living in what he calls “trapped countries,” those that are “clearly heading toward what might be described as a black hole.” Not all these people are Africans. Some live in Bolivia, Myanmar, Cambodia, Haiti, Laos, North Korea and Yemen. But 70 percent of the bottom billion live in Africa, and there is good reason to expect that proportion to rise. - Mitchell Tsai
Mitchell Tsai
What’s He Really Like? Check the Lulu App [Deborah Schoeneman, NYTimes - 11/20/13] -
What’s He Really Like? Check the Lulu App [Deborah Schoeneman, NYTimes - 11/20/13]
On Lulu, women can rate men in categories — ex-boyfriend, crush, together, hooked-up, friend or relative — with a multiple-choice quiz. Women, their gender verified by their Facebook logins, add pink hashtags to a man’s profile ranging from the good (#KinkyInTheRightWays) to the bad (#NeverSleepsOver) to the ugly (#PornEducated). - Mitchell Tsai from Bookmarklet
The Knockout Game :The Real Life Grand Theft Auto V | Spy Parent -
The Knockout Game :The Real Life Grand Theft Auto V | Spy Parent
Umm, this is not good. "The knockout game aka The One Hitter Quitter is the deadly game that African American teenagers are playing across the nation. It is the true life version of the popular video game Grand Theft Auto (GTA). The knockout game involves a group of teenagers seeking out a helpless victim on the street to knockout with one punch. One of the teens from the group strikes the knockout blow to the victim within a matter of seconds which prevent the victim from protecting themselves. There have been numerous knockout assaults in New York, New Jersey, Saint Louis, Washington D.C., and other cities. The video below gives gruesome detail of the game." - ronin from Bookmarklet
Yeah read about this happening to a woman in DC. People are idiots. - Shevonne
In Brooklyn, they're targeting Jews specifically. - Akiva
Not sure how this relates to GTA - Rodfather
Never a good sign. - Brent Schaus
Is it really better or worse than little boys playing "army" with little plastic figures? I probably killed a few gazillion people, animals, spaceships, etc... in all my stick-figure games, fantasy role-playing, and video games. It's pretty crazy what society encourages kids to play with... - Mitchell Tsai
RT @mental_floss: Microsoft Windows 1.0 was released on this date in 1985.
RT @mental_floss: Microsoft Windows 1.0 was released on this date in 1985.
yah I remeber them screens !! - Peter Dawson
angry fruit salad - Big Joe Silence
Wow. I've never seen this screen before. Stayed away from windows until 3.0...because I got hooked on Mac/Lisa in late 1984 (and otherwise used VMS or unix on a Vax). - Mitchell Tsai
Mitchell Tsai
A Cold War Fought by Women [John Tierney, NYTimes - 11/18/13] -
A Cold War Fought by Women [John Tierney, NYTimes - 11/18/13]
In jeans, she attracted little notice and no negative comments from the students, whose reactions were being secretly recorded during the encounter and after the woman left the room. But when she wore the other outfit, virtually all the students reacted with hostility. - Mitchell Tsai from Bookmarklet
Most of the aggression, though, happened after she left the room. Then the students laughed about her and impugned her motives. One student suggested that she dressed that way in order to have sex with a professor. Another said that her breasts “were about to pop out.” - Mitchell Tsai
The results of the experiment jibe with evidence that this “mean girl” form of indirect aggression is used more by adolescents and young women than by older women, who have less incentive to handicap rivals once they marry. Other studies have shown that the more attractive an adolescent girl or woman is, the more likely she is to become a target for indirect aggression from her female peers. - Mitchell Tsai
“Sex is coveted by men,” she said. “Accordingly, women limit access as a way of maintaining advantage in the negotiation of this resource. Women who make sex too readily available compromise the power-holding position of the group, which is why many women are particularly intolerant of women who are, or seem to be, promiscuous.” - Mitchell Tsai
Mitchell Tsai
Why Does Health Care Cost so Much in America? Ask Harvard's David Cutler [David Cutler, PBS - 11/19/13] -
Why Does Health Care Cost so Much in America? Ask Harvard's David Cutler [David Cutler, PBS - 11/19/13]
3 Reasons (1) Administrative costs are astronomical (~25%). Next highest countries are ~10-15%. Duke University Hospital has 900 hospital beds and 1,300 billing clerks. The typical Canadian hospital has a handful of billing clerks. - Mitchell Tsai from Bookmarklet
(2) U.S. spends more than other countries on many of the same things; e.g. (a) drugs (b) doctors services (c) equipment - Mitchell Tsai
(3) Americans receive more medical care, not so much in terms of doctor visits [much fewer], but heart attack victims are more likely to get open heart surgery. In Ontario, Canada, 11 hospitals do open heart surgery. Pennsylvania has roughly the population of Ontario and it has 60+ hospitals that do open heart surgery. - Mitchell Tsai
There's so much waste in the system -- our best guess is that about a third of medical spending is not associated with improved outcomes. - Mitchell Tsai
Really what we're doing is two things: one is on the demand side trying to make people smarter consumers, and the second is on the provider side, eliminating the monetary incentives to do more testing and procedures. Instead, let's move to a system that says, "do what's appropriate, make the patients better and you'll get rewarded for it." - Mitchell Tsai
Increasingly, I believe insurers will make you pay more for care that you want to do that's not medically necessary. - Mitchell Tsai
Comment: Under Obamacare ANY state can opt out if they can provide a better plan for their citizens by 2017. Vermont is going Medicare-for-all. - Mitchell Tsai
Comment: Agree, we need to eliminate unneeded and costly support personnel. Case in point, a recent visit to a local hospital for a routine blood test involved seeing a receptionist checking for order request, fasting status, then told me to wait for the next clerk checking my I D, insurance cards and status, then told me to go to the blood draw section. A clerk checked and confirmed ny... more... - Mitchell Tsai
Comment: Why does healthcare cost so much in America? I'll give three reasons of my own, that are much more significant than his. (1) government subsidy of professional education (2) accounting regulations written by and for healthcare mega-corporations - namely, government endorsement of third party price collusion (as opposed to standard, free-market price negotiation between producers and consumers) (3) direct government intervention in the health insurance market - Mitchell Tsai
Comment: What's missing from this is that you're not telling everyone the cost of crime violence in that "we spend more on healthcare" figure. "The average cost to treat one gunshot victim at Loyola: $540,447. A stabbing victim: $245,652." - abc news "The average victim of a serious gun injury suffers physical and mental aftereffects for 20 years or more, according to Sager. That means... more... - Mitchell Tsai In 2011, chronic illnesses account for 84 percent of costs overall among the entire population, not only of the elderly. Chronic illness among individuals younger than 65 years accounts for 67 percent of spending, - Mitchell Tsai
>>> This is one of the best short summaries of the major costs of US healthcare (most articles focus on 1 or 2 minor/medium issues). It doesn't touch on one of the big ones (1A) a small minority of people use 60-90% of the healthcare - who are they, and how can we improve their lives & decrease costs. It's also politically safe and doesn't look at the political reasons behind (1-2-3)... more... - Mitchell Tsai
An obvious one, the more you charge the more money you make? - Todd Hoff
Mitchell Tsai
Above, Below and Around Paris, on Foot [Andrew Brenner, New York Times - 11/15/13] -
Above, Below and Around Paris, on Foot [Andrew Brenner, New York Times - 11/15/13]
But with four of us, there was safety in numbers, and so we set out into the darkness to explore one of the city’s more hidden treasures: the Petite Ceinture. Forget the Catacombes or the Égouts; impressive as Paris’s underground bone repository (the former) and sewers (the latter) are, the abandoned rail line encircling the city offers urban hikers a new perspective. - Mitchell Tsai from Bookmarklet
Mitchell Tsai
Jean-Claude Van Damme's Volvo splits stunt between two semis - watch (& behind-the-scenes) [Andrea Reiher, Zap2it - 11/14/13] -
Jean-Claude Van Damme's Volvo splits stunt between two semis - watch (& behind-the-scenes) [Andrea Reiher, Zap2it - 11/14/13]
Mitchell Tsai
Obamacare vs. American doctors [Marc Siegel, NY Daily News - 11/14/13] -
Obamacare vs. American doctors [Marc Siegel, NY Daily News - 11/14/13]
President Obama’s promise that you would get to keep your doctor was propaganda to me from the first time I heard it. Health care doesn’t work this way. How can you keep me as a doctor unless I decide to keep you as my patient? Don’t I have the fundamental right to choose? What happens if your health insurance plan pays me too little and overly restricts the prescriptions I write or the tests I try to order for your benefit? - Mitchell Tsai from Bookmarklet
"How can you keep me as your doctor if your new Obamacare insurance policy doesn’t include me in its shrinking network and restricts out-of-network payments? And even if I am in your network, what happens if my hospital isn’t? Cleveland Clinic and Cedars-Sinai, two of the top hospitals in the country for patient care, are accepting only one insurance plan each from their respective state exchanges." - Mitchell Tsai
Even as the main provisions of Obamacare are being shakily enacted, a new poll by the New York State Medical Society finds that 44% of doctors say they aren’t participating in Obamacare, and 23% aren’t taking patients from the failing health exchanges. - Mitchell Tsai
Keep in mind that doctors already have a substantial history of trying to escape from highly regulated, low-paying insurance. Back in 2010, when proponents of the new law bragged about the expansion of Medicaid as a core feature, many doctors were dropping out of Medicaid. The 2011 National Medical Care Survey found that 31% of doctors said they would not take new Medicaid patients. - Mitchell Tsai
And it isn’t just Medicaid. The 2013 Medicare Payment Advisory Commission report reveals that only 73% of primary care doctors are accepting new Medicare patients. Last year, the Physicians Foundation surveyed more than 13,000 doctors and found that 7% plan to switch to a concierge or cash-only practice. - Mitchell Tsai
The idea that you could keep your insurance plan was more propaganda. Back in June 2010, the federal Health and Human Services Department, the IRS and the Labor Department published draft regulations for the new law that set standards for insurance plans. It was predicted that from 45% to 66% of those offered by employers as well as from 40% to 67% of individual policies would no longer be legal by 2013. - Mitchell Tsai
Mitchell Tsai
Russian Subways Now Accept Squats for Payment [Jessica Catcher, Mashable - 11/12/13] -
Russian Subways Now Accept Squats for Payment [Jessica Catcher, Mashable - 11/12/13]
Thanks holly #ravingfangirl for posting this at - Mitchell Tsai from Bookmarklet
Mitchell Tsai
Switzerland’s Proposal to Pay People for Being Alive [Annie Lowrey, New York Times - 11/12/13] -
Switzerland’s Proposal to Pay People for Being Alive [Annie Lowrey, New York Times - 11/12/13]
Every month, every Swiss person would receive a check from the government, no matter how rich or poor, how hardworking or lazy, how old or young. Poverty would disappear. - Mitchell Tsai
Mitchell Tsai
A Cure for the Allergy Epidemic? [Moises Velasquez-Manoff, NYTimes - 11/9/!3] -
A Cure for the Allergy Epidemic? [Moises Velasquez-Manoff, NYTimes - 11/9/!3]
The working hypothesis is that innocuous cowshed microbes, plant material and raw milk protect farming children by favorably stimulating their immune systems throughout life, particularly early on. - Mitchell Tsai from Bookmarklet
Mitchell Tsai
Bought 2nd iPod Touch from BestBuy (*NOT* from Apple Store) for $267.79. Lot of lessons from 1st iPod Touch whose screen cracked in 8 days, and Apple wanted $99 + tax to fix. (1) Best Buy had $40 discount - $160 not $200 (2) BestBuy has 2-yr accidental coverage for $55 - renewable (3) Immediately installed $15 InvisibleShield & $21 Griffin Case
BestBuy accidental warranty is $35 (1 yr), $55 (2 yr), or $75 (3 yr). The 1 yr is not renewable, so I opted for the 2 yr (which might be longer than I use the iPod, I might switch to the iPhone 5 or 6 or 7). One of my friends suggested BestBuy's coverage because he's already had his iPod/iPhone fixed 3 times. - Mitchell Tsai
BestBuy's website was $10 cheaper than the store price ($179.99 vs. $189.99), so the store salesperson did a pricematch. When we rang the purchase on the register, a $20 gift card appeared, so we used the $20 gift card towards the rubberized case. - Mitchell Tsai
The Apple Store screen cover (forgot the brand) was the best decision I made on the original iPod. When the screen cracked, the screen cover kept the glass fragments from scattering. I could clean out the glass pieces at my leisure. The cover also allowed me to use a cracked screen without cutting my fingers. - Mitchell Tsai
I picked the most rubberized, bouncy cover I could find. The Griffin Armored Protector is black rubber and completely wraps around the iPod tops & bottoms, covering the front top/bottom non-screen areas. $21 at BestBuy. $12.99 at Amazon. - Mitchell Tsai
Bought $15 Zagg Invisible Shield. ($10.49 at Amazon). Don't know if this will work as well (or better) as the old screen cover. - Mitchell Tsai
Overpaid $12.50 + $2.61 tax ($15.11) buying the accessories at BestBuy rather than Amazon. However, I did have an expert screen installer put the cover on my iPod Touch. If I were to do this over, I would buy the accessories from Amazon first, so that I'd have them ready when purchasing the iPod. I cracked the screen on the original iPod touch before I bought a protective case. - Mitchell Tsai
I had to take off my Invisible Shield when I bought the Otterbox case I used. The fit was just too tight, and the shield kept sliding when it went into the case. - Ha3rvey (on hiatus)
This Invisible Shield is super-thin & stuck to the screen. Maybe it's different than the one you bought? P.S. My old one also mounted on the screen...although more removably. This Griffin one requires a spray to attach. The old one simply peeled on & off (and 2 came in the box). - Mitchell Tsai
It could be. I wonder if I'm remembering the right brand. Either way, I'm glad you got one that worked with your case. - Ha3rvey (on hiatus)
Set up "Find my iPhone" on new iPod Touch. Thanks Robert Patton for the suggestion. - Mitchell Tsai
Apple wanted $99 + tax to repair my iPod Touch. A new one only cost me $60 more ($159.99 + tax) at BestBuy. Glad I didn't pay Apple to fix my old iPod touch. Now I have 2 year accidental coverage on the new one, which Apple wouldn't offer on the old one (and Apple's Applecare Plus for iPhone 4 has a $50 deductible for each repair). - Mitchell Tsai
Didn't realize I had so many passwords to change for lost iPod Touch. Yahoo! (e-mail), Facebook, Instagram, FriendFeed, Google, FourSquare. Didn't have to change LinkedIn, bank, or brokerage passwords. - Mitchell Tsai
Timeline of my Apple stuff - Mitchell Tsai
Mitchell Tsai
NLA1175 10.8V 5500MAH Repalcement Notebook Battery for Apple Macbook Pro 15" Replaces MA348LL/A - $42.99 [3B Tech] Apple wants $129.00 + tax -
NLA1175 10.8V 5500MAH Repalcement Notebook Battery for Apple Macbook Pro 15" Replaces MA348LL/A - $42.99 [3B Tech] Apple wants $129.00 + tax
Mon 10/21/13: I just bought: 'Apple MA348LL/A Battery for MacBook Pro 15" for $21 via @amazon (versus $129 + tax at Apple) [A1150, A1175 - by tMate powers] Series - Mitchell Tsai
The 3B Tech battery didn't last 1 year. It's been flaking out for ~6 months now. Currently it powers down even when saying 84% capacity left. Hopefully the tMate powers one will work better. Free 2-day shipping by doing a trial of Amazon Prime for 30 days - Mitchell Tsai
See for timeline of my Apple computers - Mitchell Tsai
I've always wanted a Repalcement Notebook Battery. - Akiva
Mitchell Tsai
ASUS SDRW-08D2S-U/W/G/ACI/AS Computer International Direct External Slim White 8X DVD-RW ($29.99 + free shipping) [Amazon] -
ASUS SDRW-08D2S-U/W/G/ACI/AS Computer International Direct External Slim White 8X DVD-RW ($29.99 + free shipping) [Amazon]
I just bought one of these for $43.09 at Fry's since my MacBook Pro's optical drive only reads 2 of the 4 DVDs I rented from Blockbuster yesterday. - Mitchell Tsai
Google Product Search did better than Pricegrabber. First time in 10+ years I've found a meta-shopping site better than Pricegrabber for this kind of stuff. - Mitchell Tsai
Mitchell Tsai
Went to Apple Store and they semi-fixed MacBook Pro optical drive, which couldn't read 4 DVDs I rented ( and a DVD was stuck). The tech unwarped my drive exterior, but still could only read 2 of 4 DVDs, so I bought an ASUS external DVD-RW drive for $43.09 at Fry's. Drive is only $30 at Amazon
Mitchell Tsai
Bought a new battery for my 4.5 yr old MacBook Pro. $42.99 (Apple wanted $129.00 + tax) Old battery only holding 828 mAh (18%) of original 5,500 mAh after 651 charge cycles. Surprised the battery lasted this long...
MacBook Pro battery.jpg
Old Macbook Pro Battery.png
See battery info when the next battery flaked out (2013). - Mitchell Tsai
Mitchell Tsai
NLA1175 10.8V 5500MAH Repalcement Notebook Battery for Apple Macbook Pro 15" Replaces MA348LL/A - $43 Battery started flaking out after 1 year. Weirdness with charge capacity - sometimes shows 5000+ mAh, sometimes ~1000 mAh. Ordered a $20 replacement
See, Battery info on my last battery when it was dying - Mitchell Tsai
Mitchell Tsai
Drugs that cause most harm: Scoring drugs [Economist - 11/2/10] -
Drugs that cause most harm: Scoring drugs [Economist - 11/2/10]
Alcohol is the most harmful drug in Britain, scoring 72 out of a possible 100, far more damaging than heroin (55) or crack cocaine (54). It is the most harmful to others by a wide margin, and is ranked fourth behind heroin, crack, and methamphetamine (crystal meth) for harm to the individual. - Mitchell Tsai from Bookmarklet
Mitchell Tsai
Problems with scientific research: How science goes wrong [Economist - 10/19/13] >50% of published research may not be replicable...(e.g. it's bunk). -
Problems with scientific research: How science goes wrong [Economist - 10/19/13] >50% of published research may not be replicable...(e.g. it's bunk).
A rule of thumb among biotechnology venture-capitalists is that half of published research cannot be replicated. Even that may be optimistic. Last year researchers at one biotech firm, Amgen, found they could reproduce just six of 53 “landmark” studies in cancer research. - Mitchell Tsai from Bookmarklet
Earlier, a group at Bayer, a drug company, managed to repeat just a quarter of 67 similarly important papers. A leading computer scientist frets that three-quarters of papers in his subfield are bunk. - Mitchell Tsai
In 2000-10 roughly 80,000 patients took part in clinical trials based on research that was later retracted because of mistakes or improprieties. - Mitchell Tsai
One reason is the competitiveness of science. In the 1950s, when modern academic research took shape after its successes in the second world war, it was still a rarefied pastime. The entire club of scientists numbered a few hundred thousand.As their ranks have swelled, to 6m-7m active researchers on the latest reckoning, scientists have lost their taste for self-policing and quality control. The obligation to “publish or perish” has come to rule over academic life. Competition for jobs is cut-throat. - Mitchell Tsai
In April, for instance, a paper in PLoS ONE, a journal, reported that nine separate experiments had not managed to reproduce the results of a famous study from 1998 purporting to show that thinking about a professor before taking an intelligence test leads to a higher score than imagining a football hooligan. - Mitchell Tsai
Statistical mistakes are widespread. The peer reviewers who evaluate papers before journals commit to publishing them are much worse at spotting mistakes than they or others appreciate. Professional pressure, competition and ambition push scientists to publish more quickly than would be wise. A career structure which lays great stress on publishing copious papers exacerbates all these... more... - Mitchell Tsai
A study in April by Dr Ioannidis and colleagues found that in neuroscience the typical statistical power is a dismal 0.21; writing in Perspectives on Psychological Science, Marjan Bakker of the University of Amsterdam and colleagues reckon that in that field the average power is 0.35. - Mitchell Tsai
Consider 1,000 hypotheses being tested of which just 100 are true. Studies with a power of 0.8 will find 80 of them, missing 20 because of false negatives. Of the 900 hypotheses that are wrong, 5%—that is, 45 of them—will look right because of type I errors. Add the false positives to the 80 true positives and you have 125 positive results, fully a third of which are specious. - Mitchell Tsai
If you dropped the statistical power from 0.8 to 0.4, which would seem realistic for many fields, you would still have 45 false positives but only 40 true positives. More than half your positive results would be wrong. - Mitchell Tsai
Mitchell Tsai
Why have young people in Japan stopped having sex? Abigail Haworth, The Observer @The Guardian - 10/19/13] -
Why have young people in Japan stopped having sex? Abigail Haworth, The Observer @The Guardian - 10/19/13]
Arm’s length: 45% of Japanese women aged 16-24 are ‘not interested in or despise sexual contact’. More than a quarter of men feel the same way. - Mitchell Tsai from Bookmarklet
"Official alarmism doesn't help. Fewer babies were born here in 2012 than any year on record. (This was also the year, as the number of elderly people shoots up, that adult incontinence pants outsold baby nappies in Japan for the first time.) Kunio Kitamura, head of the JFPA, claims the demographic crisis is so serious that Japan "might eventually perish into extinction"." - Steve C
"Aoyama cites one man in his early 30s, a virgin, who can't get sexually aroused unless he watches female robots on a game similar to Power Rangers." - Steve C
"Tomita says a woman's chances of promotion in Japan stop dead as soon as she marries. "The bosses assume you will get pregnant." Once a woman does have a child, she adds, the long, inflexible hours become unmanageable. "You have to resign. You end up being a housewife with no independent income. It's not an option for women like me." Around 70% of Japanese women leave their jobs after... more... - Steve C
In Italy in the recent past we had less than zero population growth and more people over 65 than under 15 years old. It's not an Apocalypse. - Ubikindred
Mitchell Tsai
Congress’s budget fights, debt-ceiling stand-offs, and spending cuts have cost the U.S. economy ~3% of GDP since 2010 ($700 billion) [Taegan Goddard's Wonk Wire - 10/16/13] -
Congress’s budget fights, debt-ceiling stand-offs, and spending cuts have cost the U.S. economy ~3% of GDP since 2010 ($700 billion) [Taegan Goddard's Wonk Wire - 10/16/13]
The Cost of Crisis-Driven Fiscal Policy [Macroeconomic Advisers - Oct 2013] - Mitchell Tsai
Mitchell Tsai
A Walmart Shopping Frenzy After Food Stamp Cards Malfunction [Noah Rayman,, Time - 10/14/13] -
Customers cleared shelves and police were called in to control crowds taking advantage of suddenly unlimited spending allowed on their Electronic Benefits Transfer cards, which are issued to recipients of government food stamps. Spending limits on the cards were reportedly disabled for about two hours. - Mitchell Tsai from Bookmarklet
Xerox, which runs parts of the EBT system, said a power outage during a routine maintenance test caused the glitch. - Mitchell Tsai
Walmart’s corporate headquarters told the store to continue selling to EBT card holders despite the glitch. A spokesman for Walmart later told KSLA that the company continued selling to shoppers “so that they could get food for their families.” - Mitchell Tsai
Mitchell Tsai
How Often Do Gamblers Really Win? [Mark Maremont & Alexandra Berzon, Wall Street Journal - 10/11/13] -
How Often Do Gamblers Really Win? [Mark Maremont & Alexandra Berzon, Wall Street Journal - 10/11/13]
The lightest gamblers—the 10% of customers who placed the fewest wagers over the two years—also had the highest winning percentage. About 17% of them ended up in the black—tough odds but still better than the dismal 5.4% winning percentage of the heaviest gamblers. - Mitchell Tsai
Among the whole group of 4,222 gamblers, just seven won more than $5,000 (€3,698) over the two years, while 217 lost more than $5,000. That's a 31-1 ratio of big losers to big winners. - Mitchell Tsai
Poker is partly a game of skill, and the outcomes reflect that. About one-third of the poker players classified as "most involved" by the Harvard researchers ended up winning money over time, while just 10% of the rest ended up in the black. - Mitchell Tsai
Mitchell Tsai
Letter: Obamacare makes big insurance companies unnecessary middlemen [Steven Mento, Shore News Today - 10/8/13] -
Starting Oct. 1, 2014, the law will signify the beginning of the end of the health insurance industry as we know it. My former CEO at Cigna said at a leadership retreat that what kept him up at night was the fear that big health insurance corporations might someday be viewed as unnecessary middlemen, that their “value proposition” would come under scrutiny and found to be wanting – that insurance companies would be, to use his term, “dis-intermediated.” - Mitchell Tsai from Bookmarklet
One of the things apparent right off the bat is that some of the best deals will be offered by non-profit health insurers, including the brand new co-op plans that will be available in about half the states. These plans will be lean and mean. They won’t have the enormous overhead costs of the big for-profit insurance corporations. - Mitchell Tsai
If you’re wondering why Aetna, Cigna, Humana and UnitedHealth Group, four of the biggest for-profits, are not planning to participate in many of the marketplaces, it’s because they know they cannot be competitive and still satisfy the profit expectations of their shareholders. - Mitchell Tsai
Let them get dis-intermediated, costs would decrease and we'd be better off. Health care should be a right for all, and "insurance" should only be necessary for catastrophic events. - Tinfoil 2.0
Tinfoil - Given the ~$2 trillion US "medical care" market, all the rich people in that industry will probably fight tooth & nail for keep healthcare the way it is,... and delay ObamaCare as long as possible. .... the "healthcare right for all" is big ball of different issues (e.g. clean water & air & organic healthy food for all are probably good "rights" also ... IMO people have no "rights", but we agree/disagree as a society to certain mutual behaviors, and those change as societies evolve/devolve). - Mitchell Tsai
I agree that insurance companies are often unnecessary middlemen that inflate costs. Still, I don't view medical care as a right, and I don't see government healthcare as an improvement. Most nations with centralized healthcare also have a private market with better and faster care. Unless the private market is severely hampered or outlawed, the same will happen in the U.S. I view... more... - Todd
@todd30 quote "Most nations with centralized healthcare also have a private market with better and faster care." -- the problem with this "private extension" is that it tries to swallow public service, sucking out precious resources which it didn't create, leaving it with hard, problematic load. You know, "privatizing profit, socializing cost". - непростые коротышки
In the nations that I'm thinking of, the private providers are a reaction to poor or failing public providers. I'm no fan of the insurance companies, and I agree that they have created a mess, but we already have government medicine at the state and local levels, which is a bigger mess. Our government refuses to even define who is or isn't a citizen, and eligible for benefits. Do you really think that same government can manage healthcare? - Todd
@todd30 I guess you don't realize we are in different countries, or better say on different continents. And hence our problems are different - US has let it happen, while we didn't yet. Our needs are different. - непростые коротышки
@A.T. -- I just assumed that you are an American, sine the topic is the U.S. healthcare system. I'm not sure what your position is. - Todd
Mitchell Tsai
Rich People Just Care Less (The Great Divide is a series about inequality.) [Daniel Goleman, New York Times - 10/5/13] -
[[[Read the many good comments]]] A growing body of recent research shows that people with the most social power pay scant attention to those with little such power. ... in other situations we are relatively higher on the totem pole of status — and we, too, tend to pay less attention to those a rung or two down. - Mitchell Tsai from Bookmarklet
While the wealthy can hire help, those with few material assets are more likely to value their social assets: like the neighbor who will keep an eye on your child from the time she gets home from school until the time you get home from work. The financial difference ends up creating a behavioral difference. Poor people are better attuned to interpersonal relations — with those of the same strata, and the more powerful — than the rich are, because they have to be. - Mitchell Tsai
Social distance makes it all the easier to focus on small differences between groups and to put a negative spin on the ways of others and a positive spin on our own. Freud called this “the narcissism of minor differences"... - Mitchell Tsai
This widening gulf between the haves and have-less troubles me, but not for the obvious reasons. Apart from the financial inequities, I fear the expansion of an entirely different gap, caused by the inability to see oneself in a less advantaged person’s shoes. Reducing the economic gap may be impossible without also addressing the gap in empathy. - Mitchell Tsai
Marcella Daly Mroczkowski: One of the oldest rules of civilization is that if the rich and powerful don't embrace responsibility for how they affect the whole of their country, you don't have a civilization. ... Anacyclosis - the cycle of history in which good government is defined as government for the good of all and bad government that which serves the few at the expense of the many. - Mitchell Tsai
Paul Posner: Income inequality didn't decrease after 1929 because the very wealthy became more empathetic toward those less affluent than themselves. Rather, it decreased because we had a governing class, both Democrats and Republicans, who were willing to pass legislation benefitting the broad majority of American society in the face of opposition from moneyed interests. - Mitchell Tsai
What's missing today is not so empathy, which has probably always been in short supply among the wealthy, but rather political courage. - Mitchell Tsai
Pam Shira Fleetman: Perhaps the lack of empathy also comes from the American ideal of meritocracy - - meaning that, if one is economically disadvantaged, it is due to flaws in one's character (since anyone can make it if they work hard enough). In this view, those who are not "successful" are unworthy and therefore undeserving of help from others. - Mitchell Tsai
Charlotte Scot: Unfortunately, many people of privilege don't realize or accept the premise they are privileged. They view their lifestyle as the norm and anyone who isn't a part of it is a lazy underachiever. - Mitchell Tsai
fd62: All I can say for those whom have no empathy (both rich and poor) is how shallow a life they must have. Maybe they need someone to show them empathy, because of their limited vision of life and of those around them. - Mitchell Tsai
marie: This phenomenon is well documented in social science. In race relations in this country, W.E.B. DuBois gave it a name: 'double consciousness'. Blacks, as a matter of survival, had to always consider the perspective of the whites around them, because if they found themselves in the wrong place at the wrong time, they could lose a job, their rights, or even their life if they didn't. - Mitchell Tsai
They of course also considered their own perspective and those of their peers in their own communities. Whites however never had any social need to look at things from Blacks' point of view. The phenomenon can be analogized to sex and class as well. - Mitchell Tsai
GK: I'm interested in the disposition of people who start off poor and end up rich. Is there something in the process of gaining wealth that leads to a dismissive personality? Or are people who naturally have cold, indifferent attitudes toward others more likely to succeed financially in our society? - Mitchell Tsai
Doug Terry: This article indicates a truth contained in many novels and through personal experience: if you are ever in need, ever "down and out", your rich friends will desert you. The people who have had trouble themselves are much more likely to be friends through thick and thin. - Mitchell Tsai
A rich person will loan you 10 dollars and congratulate himself. A poor person will give you his last 100 and help you get your car started, too. Poorer people know about life, rich people know about things and how to exploit opportunities for gain. - Mitchell Tsai
JAS: Because I teach at a very affluent university, many of my students also come from wealthy families. What I see are people who are scared to death that they will lose their grip in the upper middle class and that their kids won't have the same opportunities they did. I see very little incentive to help the less fortunate, partly because too much money is flowing out to private schools and university tuition, or to help older children keep up a certain standard of living. - Mitchell Tsai
It is the children of these high income baby boomers I worry about most. They are learning to be isolated from other groups and keep their money close, in order to "keep it in the family". There is great fear among the parents (and their kids can feel the pressure) that the bottom will fall out any day. - Mitchell Tsai
Jessica: People who are wealthier care less not be cause they are wealthier, but because they care less and thus become wealthier. ... Empathetic people are less likely to work in jobs that where cut-throat competition exists or where you have to be aggressive in expanding your business. ... Just read the recent Times articles about the number of women in the industry and... more... - Mitchell Tsai
Josh Hill: Some of it, I think, is lack of contact, but some of it also seems to be a consequence of the personality type that achieves wealth. These people tend to be self-interested, unprincipled, and callous. - Mitchell Tsai
Ernie: It is just as likely, if not more likely, that the rich are rich because they have less empathy for others to begin with. ... This relative lack of compassion is precisely what allowed them to be detached from the suffering of others, thus allowing them to make wealth their singular goal in life. - Mitchell Tsai
Paul R Cooper: Having been impressed by Gunner Myrdal's epic study of racism in America I am convinced that most of us don't look back (or down, if you prefer) at those we have risen above. Small differences in income or social status turn those on higher rungs of the ladder away from those they leave behind. - Mitchell Tsai
At the margins between income and social classes competition is fierce, as when in the South white workers feared competition for their jobs from African Americans. But the winners at each level don't look back, and those who rise spectacularly above the great majority of us certainly have no inclination to even think about the plight of the middle class and lower. - Mitchell Tsai
Steve Hoge: And this cognitive dissonance is not ameliorated only by adopting attitudes of self-superiority, entitlement and vilification, but by also by minimizing the actual perceptual awareness of the of the less fortunate; hence the interrupting and talking-over, the distant stare without eye contact, disregard of personal space, etc. - Mitchell Tsai
sk: I agree this is an interesting question. I think the decision to "not care" about others is viewed as sort of a luxury - only the rich and powerful can afford to behave this way - and therefore this behavior is emulated by those who make it in their lifetimes as a marker of their success. - Mitchell Tsai
pfwokf01: I remember a poll, many years ago, that found that nearly 20% of the population considered themselves in the 1%, and an additional nearly 20% believed that some day they would join them. (Math was never our country's strong point). America is about becoming rich, and the Horatio Alger myth still lives as it becomes evan more a fantasy. - Mitchell Tsai
bk: This is even more apparent when we look at how we behave toward those of other species. They are "other." We have absolute power over them, and we are merciless. You have to ask-- to whom do we actually extend empathy? The circle is very small. - Mitchell Tsai
Johnny: The 'rich', well-to-do, and the powerful exhibit a strong sense of entitlement and selfish arrogance in the daily human transactions. These attitudes are present (and I write from personal experience) from their children's sports events to their business and leisure activities - they want what they want when they want it. There is little to no humility and deference to accommodate others. - Mitchell Tsai
Che Beauchard: Some of the comments on this thread are missing the point being presented in the article: The role of being superior elicits the lack of empathic attentiveness, not something inherent in the person. This is revealed because the same person who is the superior in one setting is the inferior in a different setting, and that person's attentiveness and ability to be empathic varies according to the role being played. - Mitchell Tsai
The same person who is inattentive to her inferiors when at the office might be completely attentive when in the company of her grandchildren; no one is claiming that context doesn't matter. - Mitchell Tsai
So, as our society becomes increasingly bifurcated into rich and powerful vs. poor and powerless, the greater the lack of attentiveness and empathy of those on top towards the rest of us. This does not imply a uniformity among those at the top, but it does imply that we are moving toward an increasingly medieval society in which the barons lack empathy for the serfs. - Mitchell Tsai
QUALSOL: Could it be that this is just another liberal biased study? Is it possible that all the empathy shown at the lower end of the social ladder is nothing more than false empathy - as those people have no other option than to rely on their neighbor to watch their children. Imagine what would be if they actually spoke their mind - they'd have no options. So, theres an argument to be made that they wealthy are simply more honest... - Mitchell Tsai
Mitchell Tsai
Runner’s wrong turn helps her win marathon [Natalie Morales, Today - 9/26/13] -
Runner’s wrong turn helps her win marathon [Natalie Morales, Today - 9/26/13]
Canadian runner Meredith Fitzmaurice took a wrong turn on a half-marathon course and mistakenly continued the full marathon. She ended up winning, and even qualified for the Boston Marathon. - Mitchell Tsai from Bookmarklet
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