March 31, 2009

"No" To Conscience Protections

I received an E-mail today from the Heritage Foundation asking me to voice my support to keep conscience protections in place for medical professionals.

I can't in good faith do this for two reasons.

First, if I am offered a job and I know that as part of that job I will have to do something I disagree with and I still take the job, I have no grounds to complain if I am disciplined for not doing the tasks I disagree with.

For example, let's say I was Jewish. The Sabbath must be protected per my deeply held religious beliefs. I am offered a job as a chef, but one of the requirements of the job is that I must work on the Sabbath. Mind you, the Torah specifically forbids cooking on the Sabbath.

If I take the job with that requirement in place, I have no right to complain. I accepted a responsibility and failure to follow through on those responsibilities will appropriately result in discipline up to and including termination.

Second, the existing regulations are so vaguely worded that not only do they allow nearly any insane belief to be protected, but they offer little to no protection to the patient.

Under existing regulations, a nurse can force her personal beliefs on a patient without reproach. Under existing regulations, a doctor who is a practicing Christian Scientist can refuse to treat you with anything other than prayer. Under existing regulations, a nurse who is a Jehovah's Witness can refuse to grant you a blood transfusion because of a verse from Acts.

The only requirements that exist for the health care provider is that the people who are going to object should work near people who don't have these objections, that the objections must be made within a timely fashion, and that a referral process must be in place.

Sorry, but if I am going to the hospital, every minute counts. If the hospital down the street has a staff that refuses to treat me, I may not have the opportunity to get to get to whomever they refer me to.

Just as I expect a politician to check their own self interest at the door when they represent me, I expect my physician to check their own interests at the door when they treat me.

March 27, 2009

IE8 and Team Foundation Client

If you are using Visual Studio and the Team Foundation Client and find that while the menu options work but Team Explorer doesn't after installing IE8, uninstall IE8.

Team Explorer relies on some COM objects that had breaking changes in IE8.

March 18, 2009

Voltron Season 1 On Hulu

Enough said.

Performance Issues with Windows XP on an SSD

If you have an solid-state disk drive (SSD) and are running Windows XP (say, with a netbook) and you are having performance issues, make sure that your page file is set to a fixed size.

To do this, tap Windows Key + Break or Control Panel > Performance and Maintenance > System or Control Panel > System, depending on your preferences.

Under "System Properties," go to the "Advanced" tab.

Click the "Settings" button under "Performance."

Under "Performance Options," go to the "Advanced" tab.

Click the "Change" button under "Virtual memory."

Under "Drive [Volume Label]", pick the drive that has a "Paging File Size" next to it.

Under "Paging file size for selected drive," ensure that "Custom size" is selected and set both the initial size and maximum size to the same value (preferably the "Recommended" value listed at the bottom of the dialog.)

Hit the "Set" button.

Hit "OK" and continue to hit "OK" until you are back to the desktop.

You may have to reboot afterward.

March 11, 2009

Date Of Creation According To Oracle

Oracle is meant for big iron databases.

If you are crunching numbers on data for dates before January 1, 1753, you are either using a varchar field storing the UTC value of the date or you are using Oracle.

But what if you are trying to go back further, say, to the beginning of recorded human history? Well, the DATE column in Oracle can't handle that.

Evidently, they thought that nobody would want to store a date prior to the dates that "young earth" creationists point to as the date the world was created.

So if your date is before 4713 B.C., tough luck. ;)

Admittedly, this does cover the date range back to the earliest reported date in the Egyptian calendar (4241 B.C.), but that still misses out on the nearly six thousand years of Egyptian pre-history.