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veen's comments
veen  ·  5 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Hubski, what have you been watching lately?

That OJ one has been on my watchlist, but I wonder if it's interesting for non-Americans. I only know OJ because people keep referring to his trial.

    Has anyone here seen Black Mirror? I started an episode but it seemed pretty downer.

That's pretty much the premise. Some episodes are good at being confrontational, others less so. Between them they're unrelated so you can watch them in pretty much any order.

rezzeJ  ·  5 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    That OJ one has been on my watchlist, but I wonder if it's interesting for non-Americans.

It's definitely worth it as a non-American. The only thing I knew about OJ Simpson before I went in was that he was famous and involved in this big murder case. I didn't even know he was specifically an American Football player. Great acting all-round and it stays exciting throughout even though you know how it ends.

veen  ·  7 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Kendrick Lamar - DAMN.

It's on there if you hadn't found it yourself already. Giving it a first listen now.

galen  ·  7 days ago  ·  link  ·  

It's such a solid project. DNA blew my mind, plus the realization that the beat on Fear is the same from the switch on The Heart Part IV

veen  ·  9 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Hubski, what is your cathartic song?

I hope next week will be better for you. The song is beautiful, thanks for sharing. For me it depends on what kind of mood I am, but here's a few:

veen  ·  10 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: April 12, 2017

If I could, I would. I haven't found a smoking-gun counterargument to that. As I see it, the Hyperloop attempts to be a plane through a tube much more than anything else. (Whether they succeed is a different story, but the resemblance there.)

veen  ·  10 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: April 12, 2017

My group research project about the Hyperloop is finally coming to a close. I think we have something pretty good on our hands but it's hard to tell - at this stage, most of what's written seems just obvious.

I had a good conversation with the head of department at my job last week. He was expecting me to quit because I'm starting my thesis soon, but I just want to put the job on hold until the end of the year. He repeatedly told me that I'm valued at the company and I am pretty sure that's something I can use as leverage once I graduate.

Speaking of graduation, I should really start fleshing out my proposal but all the other things in my life take up enough time and energy that I'm finding it hard to even begin with something so big. I am spending this Easter weekend back at home with family and friends. Hopefully that will help.

kleinbl00  ·  10 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    My group research project about the Hyperloop is finally coming to a close.

Peel off my tinfoil hat.

veen  ·  10 days ago  ·  link  ·  

If I could, I would. I haven't found a smoking-gun counterargument to that. As I see it, the Hyperloop attempts to be a plane through a tube much more than anything else. (Whether they succeed is a different story, but the resemblance there.)

veen  ·  12 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: #BoycottUnited

Emirates was so nice to fly with, even as a measly Economy passenger. First class is a different game though...

veen  ·  12 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: #BoycottUnited

Okay, I was under the impression that most regular airline tickets are still mostly refundable and / or easily canceled. I also didn't know that the money they offer is a voucher; European airlines hand out actual money, usually the same day.

What I was mostly defending was the strategy of airlines responding to regular no-shows and how I think it's not surprising to expect a large, profit-hungry airline to overbook just to make sure planes are full. It's the 'ZOMG overbooking is evil' responses that I thought were unfounded and not the issue here. They should've just offered more or rerouted the United crew.

kleinbl00  ·  12 days ago  ·  link  ·  

There are no regular no-shows any longer. And watch this space:

Most airline employees fly standby. They don't pay full-fare and, if they're crew, they don't pay at all. This is a perq of being an airline employee and most of the crew and stewards I know use it a lot. So when American says it needed to get crew to Louisville...

...I wouldn't be surprised to find out that they weren't even essential personnel. Because really? if United really needed to drag a doctor off the plane to make room for crew, that's United saying "we aren't just overbooking, we're cutting into our overbook margin to cover our staffing shortfalls." And if they were doing that regularly they'd have procedures. They'd have policies. And most importantly? They have reciprocity with just about every other carrier. There's an American that takes off an hour later. Shit, linear will put you in a learjet for $1k per person. This is me, looking this up as a consumer, on fucking Kayak.

I think somebody fucked up BIG at United and they're flat-footedly trying to figure out how to differentiate their typical neutral-evil behavior from their current chaotic-evil move.

flagamuffin  ·  12 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    Okay, I was under the impression that most regular airline tickets are still mostly refundable and / or easily canceled.

they are, just not same day. fucking up and missing your flight is different from deciding to change something around a couple days in advance. for the latter you won't get a full refund, but they'll work with you.

this is the major advantage of booking directly with airlines rather than using cheaper third party travel agencies

kleinbl00  ·  12 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I have no idea what magical fantasy flights you're booking, but United charges $200/$400, Delta offers a $200/$450 rescheduling fee, Alaska's at $175 and Virgin is at $100 (which, since they don't do round trip, means it's actually $200).

I had a $159 ticket from Los Angeles to Seattle. I was going to help my uncle haul a trailer. Then the person who needed the trailer hauled backed out. So I called up Alaska to cancel my ticket.

They tried to charge me $16.

To the best of my knowledge, all of the above require you to book directly with them and don't entertain third party tickets.

veen  ·  12 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: #BoycottUnited

While I do agree that this is an awful way to treat your customers, I have seen quite a few people going bananas over United's overbooking strategy. "Didn't he pay for his seat? How can United sell seats they don't have??!" That just isn't how airlines work these days. I dug up my textbook from airline industry expert Peter Belobaba:

    If too many reservations are accepted and more passengers show up at departure time than there are physical seats, the airline must deal with the costs and customer service issues of denied boardings (DB). On the other hand, if not enough reservations are accepted for the flight and the no-show behavior of passengers is greater than expected by the airline, there are costs associated with the lost revenue from empty seats that could otherwise have been occupied, also known as spoilage (SP). The more specific objective of most airline overbooking models is therefore to minimize the total combined costs and risks of denied boardings and spoilage (lost revenue).

    Why is overbooking even necessary? The simple answer is that airlines have historically allowed their passengers to make reservations (which removes seats from the airline’s available inventory) and then to “no-show” with little or no penalty. In very few other service or manufacturing industries can the consumer “promise” to buy a product or service and then change his or her mind at the last minute with little or no penalty. The economic motivation for airline overbooking is substantial. In the USA, domestic airline no-show rates average 10–15% of final pre-departure bookings, and can exceed 20% during peak holiday periods. Although there are substantial regional differences, average no-show rates are almost as high throughout the rest of the world. Given that most airlines struggle to attain a consistent operating profit, the loss of 10–15% of potential revenues on fully booked flights (which would occur without overbooking) represents a major negative impact on profits.

Another thing he points out is that DB costs are almost always lower than SP costs, especially since optimizing for low SP costs means accepting a structural, large loss. DB costs can also be compensated for with upgrades, free tickets and lounge access, all far lower than the profitability of a few seats. Especially since US airlines have been quite good at getting regular passengers to give up their seats voluntarily:

    With the help of voluntary DB programs, the largest US airlines have become extremely successful in managing DB and the associated costs, despite what is perceived to be very aggressive overbooking to reduce the revenue losses associated with spoilage. The involuntary DB rate among US major airlines in 2007 was only 1.12 per 10 000 passengers boarded (US DOT, 2008). Over 90% of all DB in the USA are volunteers, meaning that the total DB rate for US airlines was about 12 per 10 000 passengers boarded. This total is in line with world airline industry standards of 12 to 15 per 10 000. But the important point is that US airlines are able to report lower involuntary DB rates than most world airlines, thanks to effective voluntary DB programs.
kleinbl00  ·  12 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Yeah, gonna have to go ahead and call bullshit on your entire fucking textbook.

PREMISE:

    "Didn't he pay for his seat? How can United sell seats they don't have??!" That just isn't how airlines work these days.

Nope, sorry. If you're hitting me for multiple hundreds of dollars of nonrefundable travel, we have an agreement that in exchange for the money I paid you, you take me where you promised I will go. That you think this isn't our agreement simply because you've got a bunch of boilerplate that says otherwise illustrates that you are operating in bad faith. That all your competitors do the same thing is an illustration of collusion. And if you want to see how that sits with your passengers, just wait for the lawsuits.

PREMISE:

    Why is overbooking even necessary? The simple answer is that airlines have historically allowed their passengers to make reservations (which removes seats from the airline’s available inventory) and then to “no-show” with little or no penalty.

Key word: "Historically." This has not been true for at least two decades. Sure - all the airlines offer "refundable" airfares. They generally cost between two and four times as much as refundable airfares. And, as the low-cost non-refundable carriers have eaten into the profit margins of traditional carriers (like United) the non-refundable fares have gotten more and more expensive. Now? Now you lose 100% of the value of the ticket if you don't check in both ways (been there, done that) because while the airlines assume you recognize that you're paying exorbitant sums for the illusion of guaranteed travel, should you buy two round-trip tickets that are cheaper than one round-trip tickets on the dates you want, the airlines will cancel all four legs because fuck you, that's why.

PREMISE:

    In the USA, domestic airline no-show rates average 10–15% of final pre-departure bookings, and can exceed 20% during peak holiday periods.

Holy shit! It's almost like non-refundable fares are so much cheaper than refundable ones that it pencils out to buy three of them instead of one refundable one, especially with how fucked up the pricing is! I know - let's blame the customer.

Premise:

    Given that most airlines struggle to attain a consistent operating profit, the loss of 10–15% of potential revenues on fully booked flights (which would occur without overbooking) represents a major negative impact on profits.

So... the fact that airlines can't profit without treating customers like cargo is the customer's fault how?

PREMISE:

    DB costs can also be compensated for with upgrades, free tickets and lounge access, all far lower than the profitability of a few seats.

Yeah, they fuck you there, too. $200 airline voucher? You know what that actually is? It's $200 that must be redeemed in person at a ticket counter within the next 365 days for a full-fare ticket. Which means that "discounted" fare of $200 that you want to buy? Yeah, if you use that voucher you owe the airline $600 because it's actually an $800 ticket.

I suspect your shitheel Peter Belobaba is one of the reasons things have gotten as shitty as they have and make no mistake: everything you quote is an airline industry asshole justifying why the airline industry is entitled to be assholes to everyone.

And fuck them all.

veen  ·  12 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Okay, I was under the impression that most regular airline tickets are still mostly refundable and / or easily canceled. I also didn't know that the money they offer is a voucher; European airlines hand out actual money, usually the same day.

What I was mostly defending was the strategy of airlines responding to regular no-shows and how I think it's not surprising to expect a large, profit-hungry airline to overbook just to make sure planes are full. It's the 'ZOMG overbooking is evil' responses that I thought were unfounded and not the issue here. They should've just offered more or rerouted the United crew.

kleinbl00  ·  12 days ago  ·  link  ·  

There are no regular no-shows any longer. And watch this space:

Most airline employees fly standby. They don't pay full-fare and, if they're crew, they don't pay at all. This is a perq of being an airline employee and most of the crew and stewards I know use it a lot. So when American says it needed to get crew to Louisville...

...I wouldn't be surprised to find out that they weren't even essential personnel. Because really? if United really needed to drag a doctor off the plane to make room for crew, that's United saying "we aren't just overbooking, we're cutting into our overbook margin to cover our staffing shortfalls." And if they were doing that regularly they'd have procedures. They'd have policies. And most importantly? They have reciprocity with just about every other carrier. There's an American that takes off an hour later. Shit, linear will put you in a learjet for $1k per person. This is me, looking this up as a consumer, on fucking Kayak.

I think somebody fucked up BIG at United and they're flat-footedly trying to figure out how to differentiate their typical neutral-evil behavior from their current chaotic-evil move.

flagamuffin  ·  12 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    Okay, I was under the impression that most regular airline tickets are still mostly refundable and / or easily canceled.

they are, just not same day. fucking up and missing your flight is different from deciding to change something around a couple days in advance. for the latter you won't get a full refund, but they'll work with you.

this is the major advantage of booking directly with airlines rather than using cheaper third party travel agencies

kleinbl00  ·  12 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I have no idea what magical fantasy flights you're booking, but United charges $200/$400, Delta offers a $200/$450 rescheduling fee, Alaska's at $175 and Virgin is at $100 (which, since they don't do round trip, means it's actually $200).

I had a $159 ticket from Los Angeles to Seattle. I was going to help my uncle haul a trailer. Then the person who needed the trailer hauled backed out. So I called up Alaska to cancel my ticket.

They tried to charge me $16.

To the best of my knowledge, all of the above require you to book directly with them and don't entertain third party tickets.

oyster  ·  12 days ago  ·  link  ·  

No showing with little or no penalty is definitely not something that is a thing anymore if it ever was.

WanderingEng  ·  12 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    While I do agree that this is an awful way to treat your customers, I have seen quite a few people going bananas over United's overbooking strategy. "Didn't he pay for his seat? How can United sell seats they don't have??!" That just isn't how airlines work these days.

Ignoring the textbook stuff, I think the issue is not seeking volunteers. No volunteers? Offer more money. That's the overbooking strategy I have an issue with. Overbook, fine, but don't kick people off planes when there aren't volunteers at the price you want to pay.

kleinbl00  ·  12 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Vox is arguing that the FAA's own guidebook says $1350, not $800, and that it's up to the airline to negotiate more. The problems are

1) Nobody is flying Chicago to Louisville on a Sunday evening for fun

2) People flying Chicago to Louisville on a Sunday evening do it regularly

3) People who fly that leg regularly have a pretty good idea how delayed, shitty and overbooked United tends to be on that leg

4) People with an idea of how shitty and overbooked United tends to be have probably gotten worthless vouchers before

5) People who have gotten worthless vouchers before are not eager to get more worthless vouchers

6) It boggles the mind that a paying customer could be forcefully removed from a flight because United couldn't solve their bullshit crew problems.

This is a flight full of people going "there's no way United could be that shitty" and a country full of people going "wow. United is shitty."

veen  ·  13 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: You Guys Watching Drugs Lab Yet?

Linguistically, Dutch is very close to German. It's even the case that some dialects near the border with Germany (in the Dutch Lower Saxon](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dutch_Low_Saxon#Dialects) ) sound more German and take words and grammar from it. Because my dads part of the family is from Drenthe, I can understand German better. I had some high school German which has mostly faded away, but I can fill in the German words I don't know with their Dutch or Drents equivalent and Germans understand me well enough. Understanding written German is easier than spoken German, although that's probably the case for most closely related languages.

veen  ·  15 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Stockholm lorry rams crowds, killing at least three people

And 1,600 died of heart diseases. Terrorist attacks aren't about the numbers.

cgod  ·  15 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Terrorist attacks need to be put in perspective or we will paralyze ourselves with fear, compromise our civil liberties, marginalize (and even kill) minorities and have more needless wars

veen  ·  16 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: A Guide to Iran’s Electronic Underground

Have to admit, I'm a bit disappointed that this isn't about Metroye Tehran but it's very cool to get a peak in that kind of music scene nonetheless. I'm mostly a fan of Boards of Canada-like ambient so Idlefon caught my attention.

veen  ·  16 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: We Need More ‘Useless’ Knowledge

It wasn't closed when I posted it. Too bad!

veen  ·  17 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: April 5, 2017

I took Contemporary Moral Ethics -sadly the only philosophy course I did- but I totally loved it. It opened me up to all the grey areas and counterarguments in a whole array of modern ethical issues. What topics are you gonna cover?

galen  ·  16 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Not sure yet. We don't get syllabi til next year :/

veen  ·  17 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: April 5, 2017

Geo-information and analysis is wholly underrated, across the board. Pretty much every question that starts with 'where' can be answered better with GIS somewhere in the process. But Esri is worse than Adobe and competition is non-existant so the industry doesn't really grow. There's no "Photoshop" for geo. Well, maybe Google Earth Pro, but that's like bringing a knife to a gunfight.

I actually made the above by using Esri's new network analysis service. With the new fancy-schmancy ArcGIS Pro, they've not yet added the functionality to use your own network to calculate isochrones. (Totes an accident u guis.) It's paid, it's customizable, faster and better. If I had that back then I would've saved days if not weeks of struggling. However, the above image was €6 out of my free €10 (120 ischrones x 5 ct) and they have no sensible way for me to top that up other than to argue with a sales rep. Glad I did that right on the first try...

kleinbl00  ·  17 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Google Earth Pro is deprecated. They pulled all their useful data because they don't want to support the product anymore. All the realtors were super-salty but the fact of the matter is, Google Earth mobile uses a different engine and Google didn't want to cross-pollinate. Google Earth Desktop is dead man walking; there hasn't been an update in years.

I managed to trick ESRI's sample server into giving me drive time polygons in .kml format but I cannot for the life of me stumble across the particular server backdoor and keyword bullseye to find the links...

veen  ·  17 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: April 5, 2017

Isochrones (areas of equal travel time) never fail to look cool:

I also bought a domain last week and a bunch of acrylic glass today. These things may or may not be related. ;)

Project Barbarossa is still happening. My stubble doesn't grow fast at all but at least it's not too patchy. Even though it doesn't look too bad atm I still feel much more insecure about it than I should.

kleinbl00  ·  17 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    Isochrones (areas of equal travel time) never fail to look cool:

They also make bankers moist. This is no doubt due to the fact that if you get one of those mammer-jammer area surveys from ESRI for $500 a pop all the information is presented in terms of 5, 10 and 15-minute isochrones. Speak their language, they'll speak yours.

I get the sense that the isochrones I did were like the only ones our banker had seen in years.

rjw  ·  13 days ago  ·  link  ·  

What do bankers use isochrones for?

kleinbl00  ·  13 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Confirm your numbers.

If you can point to a study that says "10% of white males between 18 and 24 go paintballing regularly" and then whip out isochrones that capture exactly how many white males are within a 15 minute isochrone, it takes arithmetic to determine what your likely annual capture of white males between 18 and 24 are. YOu certainly aren't guaranteed their business but you have a reasonable expectation that short of loyalty to somewhere else or personal animosity towards you, they're coming to you first.

With veen's help I was able to determine exactly how many likely consumers there were among any given location. More than that, I was able to determine how many consumers there were among our competition and then, thanks to the wonder of Washington State vital statistics data, calibrate how many births any given birth center should have vs. did have. This allowed me to not only get a good estimate for our own practice, but also see which practices were leading or trailing the statistical norm.

Finally, we were able to perform the same analysis on Los Angeles, my wife's old market, to demonstrate that she was outperforming the statistical mean by a factor of seven.

When you're able to say "this practitioner has historically outperformed the statistical mean by a factor of seven but will be profitable even if she underperforms the statistical mean by a factor of five" you have an easier time getting a loan.

rjw  ·  13 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Wow it had never occurred to me that you can do this sort of analysis! That's really interesting.

kleinbl00  ·  12 days ago  ·  link  ·  

You not only can, but should. It effectively increased our access to capital by a factor of ten.

veen  ·  17 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Geo-information and analysis is wholly underrated, across the board. Pretty much every question that starts with 'where' can be answered better with GIS somewhere in the process. But Esri is worse than Adobe and competition is non-existant so the industry doesn't really grow. There's no "Photoshop" for geo. Well, maybe Google Earth Pro, but that's like bringing a knife to a gunfight.

I actually made the above by using Esri's new network analysis service. With the new fancy-schmancy ArcGIS Pro, they've not yet added the functionality to use your own network to calculate isochrones. (Totes an accident u guis.) It's paid, it's customizable, faster and better. If I had that back then I would've saved days if not weeks of struggling. However, the above image was €6 out of my free €10 (120 ischrones x 5 ct) and they have no sensible way for me to top that up other than to argue with a sales rep. Glad I did that right on the first try...

kleinbl00  ·  17 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Google Earth Pro is deprecated. They pulled all their useful data because they don't want to support the product anymore. All the realtors were super-salty but the fact of the matter is, Google Earth mobile uses a different engine and Google didn't want to cross-pollinate. Google Earth Desktop is dead man walking; there hasn't been an update in years.

I managed to trick ESRI's sample server into giving me drive time polygons in .kml format but I cannot for the life of me stumble across the particular server backdoor and keyword bullseye to find the links...