Heart Stents Are Useless for Most Stable Patients.

The New York Times has published a report on a series of studies that provide good evidence to heart stents not being useful. There may be more of a place for stents in patients who are sicker, who have disease in more than one blood vessel, or who fail to respond to medical therapy. But …

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“We would like to invest in your home”

Further proof that the stock market is too expensive, people have way too much cash, and our greed will doom us all, comes via a letter I received today. Paraphrased slightly, it says, "We would like to invest in your home". Basically, they want to give me cash now, like RIGHT NOW! Preferably yesterday,  in …

Aurélien Géron: Hands-On Machine Learning …

If you have an engineering mind-set and are interested in coming up to speed on contemporary (decade of 2010) machine learning practices I recommend Aurélien Géron's book "Hands-On Machine Learning with Scikit-Learn and TensorFlow". I have two other machine learning books on my shelf: Bishop's "Pattern Recognition and Machine Learning" and Hastie et al's "The Elements …

Adaptively downsampling a curve

It's holiday shopping season and every one is obsessed with getting discounts and points. I, however, am looking for a slightly different discount on a slightly different collection of points. When we simulate a dynamical system (a system that evolves in time), the smaller the time step of a simulation, the more accurate it is. …

Inline virtual final

I was looking into virtual functions (that link is the most succinct exposition I have seen) for some of my code. And I began to think, huh, won't this slow things down? The code first has to go to a virtual table and then look up the correct function - that's a WHOLE extra step. …

C++: how to order class declarations

Of course, this is all a matter of opinion. When I started out writing C++ (back in the days of glBegin() and glEnd() ) I followed the convention (which I found in books and example code) of putting all the member variables first, then all the member functions. There was  much hand-wringing about whether the …

The DNA knows where the DNA comes from

We know that all cells in our bodies carry DNA in their nuclei. To a first order, all the DNA in our bodies is identical (As is normal with biology, there are exceptions, called chimeras which provide much material for the tabloids). However, we know that we are not homogenous blobs of cells of the …