Spoonful of Trifles
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Have fun playing a Disney World trivia game, finding Hidden Mickeys, and learning a few fun facts!

Disney Stuff...
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  • Welcome to my latest endeavor... a podcast about science and rational thought...

    5 most recent episodes, ways to listen appear below

    Semiconductor research

    Mon, 21 Nov 2022 20:53:00 GMT



    Mon, 14 Nov 2022 20:53:01 GMT

    Map makers have an interesting challenge. I talk about maps, how they are often wrong, and how to understand a 3 dimensional world.


    Fri, 21 Oct 2022 17:46:37 GMT

    On this podcast, I talk about surveys and their results. What makes a good survey? What do results mean? In a day where many hot topics are driven by survey results, it’s important to understand what you’re seeing and understand what it means.

    I take a look at the effect, and share some findings on the topic. The article I reference is here: https://hackaday.com/2022/07/02/does-hot-water-freeze-faster-than-cold-debate-continues-over-the-mpemba-effect/

    Carl Sagan on Civil Liberties

    Fri, 23 Sep 2022 22:45:26 GMT

    Back in 1987 (yes 35 years ago!) Sagan gave a talk to the ACLU about the science, civil liberties, and democracy. The source is this: https://quillette.com/2022/07/01/science-and-civil-liberties-the-lost-lecture-of-carl-sagan/amp/

    Latest blog entries...


    How many?

      Wed, 23 Nov 2022 16:47:00 +0000


    On Disney.

      Wed, 23 Nov 2022 13:50:00 +0000
    I had said that the one single thing that would be the most likely to get Bob Chapek fired, was to screw up his relationship with the state of Florida. It was a glorious deal that was hugely advantageous to Disney - in terms of what they were doing since the 1960s, and to what they continue to do today.

    And he proceeded to do just that, but survived for a few months and even got a new contract. 

    Now to be fair, there are certainly other factors that could have led to his demise. Massive missteps. Losses in streaming. Poor communication. Some corporate nonsense with "streamlining creative groups." Loss of focus on "guest experience" and instead focusing on that bottom line and using silly business terms to hilight what you're doing (and worse: why he was doing it).  Any or all of those are certainly factors. 

    But then the governor of Florida gets (sadly for anyone who's paying attention) re-elected … and a week later, Chapek loses his job. Coincidence? Probably not. 

    But again, it may not have been the only factor. 

    After there was an internal revolt and some discussion by the board, there was a decision to make a change. They tried several ideas to outright replace Chapek with someone "new," but for now those are on hold. 

    Instead they turned to Bob Iger, the previous CEO. Iger had said recently that his biggest mistake/regret was tapping Chapek. And how that decision impacted the legacy he thought he left. 

    They offered Iger the job and then turned around and fired Chapek. 

    Look, Chapek is savvy enough to know "something" was happening. But he said afterward that the speed of the move was surprising. And that it happened shortly after signing a new contract did blindside him to a point. 

    And so Iger has to step in and help plan for what comes next. Does he help conduct a new search? Do they get bought out or merge with someone? Do they acquire some other entity to get their CEO (something apparently that was discussed to get a guy who they had wanted to be the next CEO a few years ago, but who left when Iger decided to stay on)? Or does Iger stay and groom the next person for a few years down the road?

    It's a bit of a quagmire. And while it's probably good for the company to stop some of the bleeding, I don't know if things get better, worse, or stay the same for the next 6 months to a year. 

    But many are speculating about what Iger needs to do. What those are, I won't repeat. Because I don't think any of us know the big picture plans and what this means for the company. You may love a move he makes. You may like it. You may not like it. You may hate the move. 

    At this point it's an "anything is better than the last guy" kind of feeling. 

    In any case, I've read a few articles on the topic of "what Iger needs to do to fix Disney," because I'm curious what people think is wrong. 

    It's a lot of the expected nonsense. Here's what's wrong and here's how he can make it profitable. Blah. Blah. Blah. 

    But more interesting to me are the comments that accompany the articles... those were something. 

    While some are thoughtful and maybe suggested solutions, there were 80% of them (heck maybe more) that harped on the general theme that Disney needs to stop its woke-ed-ness. 
    • Go back to being "family friendly" (whatever that means). 
    • Stop with promoting an agenda and grooming and assorted other things that people say but don't understand.
    • Stop disrespecting people (yeah go figure). 
    • Less thoughtful and more direct comments about how people should be marginalized 
    • And on and on and on. The vitriol doesn't stop!

    The twice impeached president was mentioned. The governor was mentioned. 

    When you see things like that, you realize what the bigger problem is in society. 

    A few posters pointed out that all of the things most people mention related to "being woke" actually started under Iger. So....don't expect too much. 

    And gold star to those folks for understanding it. 

    But here we are. Good luck to us all. 


    Tua Tagovailoa Concussion - what happens next?

      Sat, 08 Oct 2022 01:04:00 +0000
    I'm no expert when it comes to concussions, but in looking at the chart the concussion doctor presents, ya gotta wonder if Tua should play again this year.

    Good that the team has ruled him out this week. But he wants to play and says he feels good. The coach wants to put his best players on the field. And the doctors may clear him. 

    And sure, he’s an adult and being well compensated for putting himself at risk. But it still doesn’t seem right. 

    Maybe he gets lucky and doesn’t suffer another concussion. Then again, maybe he does and it affects the rest of his life. 

    Oh and just one point I wanted to make about all this conversation: I’ve heard people say that “some doctor who is watching on tv shouldn’t weigh in on it because he’s not there.”

    Except that the concussion doctor who the nfl consults (you know the one the nflpa fired last week?) stays in one location and watches video to make his judgement call. The only thing he has that other observer/doctors (like in this video) don’t is the team doctor on the phone to answer a few additional questions….though these questions are often answered in other ways. 

    So I would say their opinion is valid. 



      Sat, 01 Oct 2022 00:22:00 +0000
    Thinking more about concussions, I wanted to share a little something in the hope that inspires someone…

    Some years ago, my dad (the prolific inventor) was reading up on concussions. They were much more prevalent than were being reported, and the CTE effects were greatly impacting players from his generation. 

    The NFL and other sports wanted to try and reduce the number and severity of head trauma. Now you could argue that it wasn't so much about player safety as it was about business, but nevertheless they came up with some things they could change, and commissioned some studies. 

    The big change came in the idea of concussion protocol. They would have a doctor on hand who could evaluate players and decide if they needed to be held out or could go back in to games. 

    The inherent problems were that these doctors were paid by the teams (even when they were "independent") and so might not be as stringent as they otherwise might be.  

    Also, they were using a common - but flawed - method for assessments. They did (and still do!) use the sports concussion assessment test, which you can find here: 

    It doesn't really take much into consideration, and is just a sort of "hey he looks okay and says he is, so he can keep playing!"

    And there's a third factor, that they've defined up a concussion in a legal sense to not really include all manner of neurological issues, and focus just on the head. 

    Being a little ahead of his time, my dad started looking at the problem and something he found was that often, the visual acuity of a person with a concussion had changed. Their eyes might not be able to focus, might be subject to quick eye movements, and the like. 

    So he had an idea to create an app that assessed their eyes. In theory, you could determine if there was something going on by simply assessing their eye movement, using the camera. 

    We talked through this a bit (and even tried writing a little code) and determined the phones at the time weren't sophisticated enough to let you do the assessment. But, we also noted that if you took a baseline before engaging in activities, you might be able to do a comparison. 

    And then along came Apples health kit, which started to open up the abilities further. 

    Unfortunately, his own state of mind declined, and he wasn't able to pursue it further. 

    I see the possibility in it, but while I was happy to work with him, I'm not in a position to take it on myself. 

    But … I am happy to share the idea with anyone, so you can pursue it. Certainly, technology should allow someone to use video, audio (maybe there's a change in respiration or the ability to answer questions?), health kit information, and more to do at least a quick field assessment that's better than the scat. 

    Or maybe this is something could be used in conjunction with the scat, in order to improve the early detection. 

    Or with more research, or engaging a neurologist in a simple design, it could be a more comprehensive solution for concussions and other neurological issues that impact athletes in any sport - at a very low cost. 

    I hope someone will be inspired to try and keep a guy like Tua from re-entering a game when he's actually suffering from a concussion - and so he doesn't put himself at risk a few days later. 

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