Gary B's Liked Comments

Another factor to keep in mind is often-rare 'orphan diseases'. In many cases drugs that have a good chance of treating those diseases are found but not brought to the market for a variety of reasons. However at least one company discovered that because drug prices were not regulated as most medical treatments, they could identify and bring those drugs to market. In one case I know of, the drug costs over $100,000 per year per patient, but saves the lives of those 100 or so people in the world who have the disease. This drug was originally found or created by a major drug company but was never marketed. A startup (founded by a person whose daughter had the disease) licensed it and brought it to market. In the 20 years since it has grown to $1Billion per year company, specializing in drugs like this. And the daughter is still alive and a productive member of society.

These numbers are closer to the point of flexion. Not many people contribute $100,000 per year of productivity to the economy, but many people would pay that to keep their child alive.
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Point of interest: My great-grandfather Dr. George Henderson was for a time the director (IIRC) of the Calcutta Botanical garden as it was then called - he may have been involved in the founding - and was instrumental in saving the tree, back in the early-mid 1800s.
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The discovery of the 'Chia Professor' shows that the animal phase is, in fact, a complex simulant. Each chia apparently has the ability to adopt the visual characteristics of certian other animals (or other entitys?) when first born. It seems that genetically the Chia are only capable of a limited suite of possible forms, and once it adopts a form can not change. It has not been determined how this first form is selected - is it genetically programmed, or is it a case of adopting the first shape it sees? Or, even more interestingly, is it something determined by the seeds resulting from the plant phase?
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Apparently none of the drivers had any significant impairment until their levels became 3 or 4 times the defined limit. If these results are indicative, then the legal limit should be 3 or 4 times higher.

There's no sense or use in setting the limit so low that a regular medical user (Abby?) who will have a small level in her blood at all times, and is not impaired at all, would be at risk of arrest whenever she drives. It would be a waste of resources as police officers waste time citing and/or arresting people based on test results where no safety risk is present (though presumably drivers would not generally be tested except in an accident or other obvious way of getting police attention.) Putting the level too low would also feed false expectations into the press hysteria surrounding any traffic incident and could give influence legal proceedings based on a false premise, that a driver was 'stoned' when they really weren't.

As I recall, one of the big issues with alchohol is that drivers tend to drive faster when drunk, while a pot user tends to drive slower (as was born out in this test until Abby got really stoned). So that implies that a minor level of impairment due to pot appears to still be safer than a similar level of impairment due to alchohol.
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One thing that isn't mentioned here - the show was originally invented and promoted by Bruce Lee, who expected to use this as the vehicle to bring him mainstream fame in America. But the producers stiffed him, because they wanted an American 'name' actor to get ratings - they didn't think an Asian would be accepted in a lead role on American TV. Or so I read somewhere.
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I studied this question some time ago, in the context of some work in systems science and AI. My conclusion was that there is no way to 'program' (construct an algorithm) to decide any of these three questions, as they are all context dependent. No logical system can account for all the possibilities. In essence they are judgment calls.

For example, if a robot sees someone about to jump out a window. Without knowing what's going on, the robot has no way of determining if preventing the human from jumping is preventing or causing injury to that human, or to other humans.

This problem applies closely to human decision making - we learn by example to make the 'best guess' in any situation, based on available knowledge, and we have a judicial system that applies a more generalized set of ethics and rules to encourage behavior that is generally in line with society's expectations.

It might be possible to build a neural network or equivalent 'brain' that could learn the same things we ourselves learn. But just as with humans, such a 'brain' would also be subject to mistakes, insanity, and even venality.

Therefore, the three laws can only be considered laws in the same sense as judicial laws, not in the sense of mathematical or natural laws. They are ethical/moral rules that a human, or a robot, must learn to apply in context, and do its best to follow or expect to incur some form of negative reinforcement.
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Profile for Gary B

  • Member Since 2012/08/04



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