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    • CommentAuthorFan
    • CommentTimeMar 17th 2011 edited
     (9638.1)
    > experts should then be able to give a rundown

    I've read stories about how developers (software programmers) from different countries talk to you. For example, one of the old stereotypes about outsourcing/offshoring work is that Indian programmers will always say yes:

    - Do you understand?
    - Yes.
    - Will it be finished on time?
    - Yes.

    [No: it's just saying whatever you want.]

    Similarly I read once somewhere that Japanese business-people will never say "no" to you; instead the code phrase is "that would be difficult":

    - What do you think of this proposal?
    - That would be difficult. [translation: "No way; never in a million years."]

    I can't confirm whether that's true (it's hearsay to me: I haven't worked in Japan). But I was reminded of that, by this morning's Fox news: When asked if events were out of control, he answered: "It is difficult to say."
    •  
      CommentAuthorFoamhead
    • CommentTimeMar 17th 2011
     (9638.2)
    Holy. Fucking. Shit.

    •  
      CommentAuthorstaticgirl
    • CommentTimeMar 18th 2011
     (9638.3)
    *notes to self* I must learn from the wise business-people of India and Japan...
    •  
      CommentAuthorFoamhead
    • CommentTimeMar 18th 2011
     (9638.4)
    "Mini epidemic" of illness from anti-radiation pills?
    As demand spikes for potassium iodide in the wake of Japan’s nuclear crisis, U.S. poison control centers are starting to receive reports of illness in people who’ve ingested the drug aimed at protecting against radiation sickness.
    At least seven people have reported reactions to the drug, often called by its chemical name, KI, including two who said they were suffering from serious symptoms including vomiting, racing heart and dizziness or vertigo.
    That’s according to Jessica Wehrman, a spokeswoman for the American Association of Poison Control Centers, which tracks reports from 57 poison control centers nationwide.

    NB: I was a tad gobsmacked when I saw these on sale at the checkout (the same spot they fill with candy in the UK so kids can nag their parents into impulse/shut-the-hell-up buying) of a health food store when I was over there years ago. I nearly bought a packet because part of me didn't believe they were the real deal. Shows what I know.
    • CommentAuthorStefanJ
    • CommentTimeMar 18th 2011
     (9638.5)
    Most of me feels disgusted by the idodine pill madness. It's akin to the run on duct tape that occurred when some Homeland Security stoodge said it would protect citizens against bioweapons attacks.

    I feel disappointed that people are dumb enough to latch onto the pills as a protective cure-all, and I feel angry at the people exploiting their fears.

    Part of me . . . part of me wants to get rich offering the suckers a line of protective clothing soaked with Boric Acid solution:

    "Hey, did you know that the Japanese authorities have asked South Korea for FIFTY TONS of boric acid powder? They're going to use it to snuff out the atomic reactions in those damaged nuclear plants. If this stuff has the power to SNUFF OUT A RUNAWAY NUCLEAR REACTION can you imagine how effective it would be against dangerous trace particles?"

    Yes, I feel ashamed. No, I won't actually do that.
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      CommentAuthorArtenshiur
    • CommentTimeMar 18th 2011
     (9638.6)
    For the record, potassium iodide, while not a cure-all, is an important prophylactic measure in this case for people potentially in the danger zone. Not to imply that you don't know that, and you're right that people have been going crazy with it, but I didn't want anyone to get the wrong idea.
    • CommentAuthorStefanJ
    • CommentTimeMar 18th 2011
     (9638.7)
    Absolutely true . . . my sister's family lives a few miles from the Indian Point plant in Westchester County, and Con-Ed (I think) provided them with iodine pills to keep around Just In Case. Timely use of the stuff probably prevented kids downwind of Chernobyl from getting thyroid cancer.

    It's the shameless exploitation of fear and uncertaintly that has me ticked.

    One of the mailing lists I'm on was visited by someone who'd heard wonderful things about Sea Kelp Granules (here's a link!) and wanted to know What We Thought of these scientific papers (here's a link!) which recommended Sea Kelp Granules (here's a link!) for preventing radiation damage (here's a link!).

    Ugh.
    •  
      CommentAuthorFoamhead
    • CommentTimeMar 18th 2011
     (9638.8)
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      CommentAuthorFoamhead
    • CommentTimeMar 19th 2011 edited
     (9638.9)
    Either there's too much going on in the world or they're exhausted from the last week's events but this struck me as a bit...obvious:
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      CommentAuthorFoamhead
    • CommentTimeMar 21st 2011
     (9638.10)
    Safe nuclear does exist, and China is leading the way with thorium
    A few weeks before the tsunami struck Fukushima’s uranium reactors and shattered public faith in nuclear power, China revealed that it was launching a rival technology to build a safer, cleaner, and ultimately cheaper network of reactors based on thorium.
    This passed unnoticed –except by a small of band of thorium enthusiasts – but it may mark the passage of strategic leadership in energy policy from an inert and status-quo West to a rising technological power willing to break the mould.
    • CommentAuthorKosmopolit
    • CommentTimeMar 21st 2011
     (9638.11)
    More like "safe nuclear MAY exist in a decade or so of if everything goes according to plan.".
    •  
      CommentAuthorrazrangel
    • CommentTimeMar 22nd 2011
     (9638.12)
    Finally got around to watching the animation explaining the nuclear disaster to little children:




    While it's all light and silly for children (and if I have a quibble it's that irradiated air smells no different from regular air), in the end it doesn't pull back from explaining that it would be very bad for the people of Fukushima if this goes on too long and how it could poison the fish and vegetables. More or less adequate metaphor, wouldn't you say?
    • CommentAuthorVerissimus
    • CommentTimeMar 22nd 2011
     (9638.13)
    That's a great vid, thanks.
    •  
      CommentAuthorFoamhead
    • CommentTimeMar 26th 2011
     (9638.14)
  1.  (9638.15)
    it is like the world is sinking under the ocean
    •  
      CommentAuthordispophoto
    • CommentTimeMar 28th 2011
     (9638.16)
    I was watching this earlier: Horizon BBC and one thing the host said that i found interesting:

    the sea wall surrounding the coast of many cities was about 10 metres high. the tsunami that hit the coasts was also about 10 metres high. by theory the sea wall should've prevented the water from going over, or at least slowed it a lot more. apparently what happened was, when the earth shifted, the ground dropped by about 1 metre, and the water just rushed right over the wall.

    I have to wonder how the engineer who designed the sea wall must be feeling right now, for his lack of foresight.
    • CommentAuthorOddcult
    • CommentTimeApr 1st 2011
     (9638.17)
    He's probably thinking 'well, fuck, I did the best I could, considering the available budget and what was thought likely, cuz, you know, 10 metres is fucking big'.
    •  
      CommentAuthorFoamhead
    • CommentTimeApr 1st 2011
     (9638.18)
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      CommentAuthorFoamhead
    • CommentTimeApr 4th 2011
     (9638.19)