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PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 3:50 pm 
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s1m0n wrote:
In any case, unless your cardiologist is of this generation, his opinion on the question is irrelevant.

He most certainly is of "this generation". So is my GP. I'm old enough to be their dad. Even if they were closer to my age, I find it hard to believe they would be unaware of the latest practices. Staying informed goes with the profession, so I can't credit your claim of irrelevancy, and I certainly would hate to think you would actually fall back on the unbecoming prejudice of ageism in this otherwise enlightened time. Since you like to engage in conjecture about motivations, perhaps you can tell me why they would have a stake in obfuscating over such a little thing. If it were indeed true that the stethoscope has little real use any more beyond a skin-of-the-teeth peripheral role and even a bit of medical theater, why hide that? I'd accept that revelation and be satisfied with it, even if I thought the theater part was actually rather a bit silly. Since it doesn't have any real impact on my own treatment, such supposed superfluities would be their business, not mine.

s1m0n wrote:
The nurse is going to use the equipment her boss uses, if only because he controls the equipment budget, so really, the sample size is 1.

Boss? Sample size? You seem to have missed when I said that this is in a hospital, not a private practice. Nor is the hospital small. That nurse, along with the rest of her station, serves a population of practitioners, not just one. I don't see why I should even have to point this out, much less repeat myself. And either way, as to budget, if the stethoscope's irrelevancy makes it a financial burden that could be eliminated, why retain it, then? Just for the theater of it? I really don't think that angle makes enough compelling sense. I think that if it is indeed a prop, it would be for actors alone.

For the purposes of this conversation, I really would rather you actually read - and retain - what I have written in this thread when you take it upon yourself to address things you think I've said. We'd waste less time, and I wouldn't have to wonder if you weren't actually misrepresenting me on purpose despite what I have laid out for all to see. You seem to jump on my omissions just fine, so one has to wonder how much convenient cherry-picking is going on, here. A bit of advice, s1m0n: You would do better to ask questions than only utter pronouncements. Just a thought. You know.

We're back to precision again. And, I might add, what is the best use of it.

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 4:57 pm 
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Why would a doctor with a stethoscope inspire greater confidence than one without? Because that’s what we see in the movies or adverts? That’s just a media convention to show what sort of person in a white coat this is - or to avoid the need for a white coat.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 5:04 pm 
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david_h wrote:
Why would a doctor with a stethoscope inspire greater confidence than one without? Because that’s what we see in the movies or adverts? That’s just a media convention to show what sort of person in a white coat this is - or to avoid the need for a white coat.

That's my thinking, too. And lab coats are apparently entirely optional where I go; I haven't seen my GP or cardiologist in a lab coat yet. I rather like it that way, actually. Makes me more relaxed. They do wear those damned stethoscopes, though. As I said before, I don't get any feeling of reassurance out of that. I just want to be done with what needs to be done, and get out.

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 5:45 pm 
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Nanohedron wrote:
Boss? Sample size? You seem to have missed when I said that this is in a hospital, not a private practice.


Quite right, so I did. My mistake.

Nanohedron wrote:
For the purposes of this conversation, I really would rather you actually read - and retain - what I have written in this thread when you take it upon yourself to address things you think I've said.


Well, make up your mind. When I did try close reading your account, you admitted that it was inaccurate.

In any case, I'm done with this discussion. You seem to feel like I've been attacking you, when until you responded with a personal accusation about my character, I thought we were having a mild discussion about stethoscopes.

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 7:15 pm 
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s1m0n wrote:
You seem to feel like I've been attacking you, when until you responded with a personal accusation about my character, I thought we were having a mild discussion about stethoscopes.

It's not that. I wasn't feeling attacked. But it was indeed less of a discussion than a debate, and from my end you seemed unable to let any of it go, and it went so far that it started to look as if you would even grasp at straws to the bitter end, and that gets frustrating. But if you want to end the discussion, that's fine.

If you're offended by my advice, I'm sorry. But when it comes to making sense of something, I do maintain that asking questions about it gets you there sooner and more satisfactorily than throwing foregone conclusions at it to see if they stick. Just trying to help. Guess that didn't work so well.

Anyway, so it goes.

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 8:21 pm 
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Well, it's clear that somehow I got your goat. That wasn't my intention, and I apologize for any distress I might have caused. You have my complete respect, and ordinarily I value being able to debate with you. I dunno what changed this time, but I regret it. I hope it won't be permanent.

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 09, 2017 1:09 am 
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So, anyone want to talk about suspension of disbelief? Or hay bales in pseudo-medieval settings? How about "feigning reality in low-tech settings"?

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 09, 2017 5:22 am 
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s1m0n wrote:
So, anyone want to talk about suspension of disbelief? Or hay bales in pseudo-medieval settings? How about "feigning reality in low-tech settings"?


The conversation moves at too great of a pace for me to keep up. (It isn't bad, it just is what it is.)

s1m0n, how do you feel about steampunk?


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 09, 2017 8:36 am 
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s1m0n wrote:
So, anyone want to talk about suspension of disbelief? Or hay bales in pseudo-medieval settings? How about "feigning reality in low-tech settings"?


Despite your benighted view of Mr. Tom Petty, :) I am right there with you on the duty of authors to make a credible attempt at suspending my disbelief. It's a large factor in my enjoyment of books of that or any similar genre.

Your previous quote sums it up pretty well for me:

s1m0n wrote:
Good fantasy worldbuilding fosters the illusion that there's an entire breathing world that cradles the narrative. That you could turn your back on the action, walk in some other direction, and find other lives & other stories to follow. Bad fantasy worldbuilding screams that you're standing in a set, and that from any other camera angle what you'd see is cardboard, stretched canvas, and painted plywood.

Howlers like anachronistic hay bales, then, destroy the suspension of disbelief.


Earlier this year, I read the book On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King. Part autobiography and part how-to, it was well written, entertaining and informative. Having previously read very little of Mr. King's fiction, I decided I would read more, to appreciate it and the lessons learned from On Writing. I chose to read The Stand, as it was one of his biggest sellers, and it was available cheaply at a nearby used book store.

I realize it was one of his earlier works, and not his favorite either, but it was full of gaffs that pretty much ruined the story for me. Not a pure work of fantasy per se, but it does have elements of both fantasy and science fiction, being set in a near-future earth and U.S.A. It wasn't anachronistic howlers then, but mostly just poor research that did it in for me.

Example: the very few survivors of a global pandemic ride motorcycles and drive cars and trucks everywhere, crossing the continental United States, always able to get unlimited petrol without question - despite the fact there is no electricity to run the petrol pumps, and no way to siphon petrol from underground storage tanks in any petrol filling station. Completely unbelievable! If you're going to write a story set in a post-apocalyptic world, where travel figures largely into the story, I would think details like that should be the first thing a writer would want to research, but not in this case. Nor did his editor(s) catch it either.

The point being, that the writer's lack of research and attention to detail failed to suspend my disbelief and ruined what could have fairly easily otherwise have been a good story.

I have other criticisms of the book, but this example serves to illustrate my point of failure to suspend disbelief.

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 09, 2017 11:18 am 
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An Draighean wrote:
despite the fact there is no electricity to run the petrol pumps, and no way to siphon petrol from underground storage tanks in any petrol filling station.


Having worked at a gas station/convenience store in my youth, I can tell you, it's not hard to get access to the gas in the big tanks, though siphoning would be problematic because of the way siphons work. But if you have access to cars, I don't know why you wouldn't conceivably have access to pumps, since you can buy gas-powered pumps at home depot.

If you look closely at most gas station parking lots, there's usually a few little metal portholes clumped together somewhere. I've highlighted them here.

These all lead directly to tanks. When I was working there, part of my daily tasks was opening those ports, rubbing a 10' long stick with paste that changed color in the presence of water, and dropping it down the holes to see if water had managed to get into the tanks. We called it "sticking the tanks", and there was no lock or other security measure on those little portholes at the place I worked. But even if there were, bolt-cutting off a padlock is trivial.

The unbelievable part of gas-driving post-apocalyptic stories, especially when it's far-future, is that gas starts degrading after only a few months. Far into the future, there wouldn't be any usable gas available, no matter what liquid remained in those tanks.

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 09, 2017 2:08 pm 
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Late to the party and only casually followed thread. For the record, I utilize the local VA hospital which is also a teaching hospital connected to the local university. I have been going to this hospital since 1994 to present time and have experienced throughout this period nurses, resident dr.'s, and attending dr.'s from all age brackets, and they all use the stethoscopes along with the high-tech gadgets of medicine today. My primary care physician always uses the stethoscope for listening to the ticker and lungs, although she doesn't wear scope around neck nor wear lab coat. My cardiologists, young residents along with attending physicians, use the scopes regularly and some of these dr.'s wear lab coats depending on the temp control in the facility with nothing regularly noticed. So I think the stethoscope still has a useful function to some degree.

What has always concerned me related to the stethoscope use is whether the device has been cleaned, sterilized properly between patient visits. You know everyone's hygiene factor is variable and I'd like to feel comfortable in knowing the scope is clean as well as the dr.'s hands. No phobia here... just like things spit shined to sterile. :) Prevention!


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 09, 2017 2:54 pm 
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s1m0n wrote:
I dunno what changed this time...

Oh, I don't know. Maybe it was a rock in my shoe.

s1m0n wrote:
I hope it won't be permanent.

No, not at all. Nothing more than a passing cloud. :)

AaronFW wrote:
s1m0n wrote:
So, anyone want to talk about suspension of disbelief? Or hay bales in pseudo-medieval settings? How about "feigning reality in low-tech settings"?

The conversation moves at too great of a pace for me to keep up. (It isn't bad, it just is what it is.)

Welcome to the Pub as it used to be. Years back before Facebook, the Pub was a total circus, and keeping up was the order of the day. It was fun as all get-out. I'm hoping more people will start participating again. :)

AaronFW wrote:
s1m0n, how do you feel about steampunk?

:lol:

I love Steampunk...

I mean, I don't do it; I just love seeing it.

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 09, 2017 4:39 pm 
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AaronFW wrote:
s1m0n, how do you feel about steampunk?


Mixed feelings. The proto-steampunk novel is Gibson & Sterling's The Difference Engine, a serious minded what-if exploration of the possibility that the victorians had discovered computers. It's a very valid question, and the aesthetic ramifications drive the colour of steampunk today. However, while IMO as an idea it's brilliant, as a novel it's less than a triumph. I found it a bit of a grind to read.

It's imitators have followed Sturgeons Law*. Steampunk has become an aesthetic and a sub-genre. There are a lot of poorly thought out steampunk pastiches, completely lacking Gibson & Sterling's rigor. All their decisions regarding aesthetics, technology and fashion had a reason rooted in the initial premise, and were well thought out. Many of their imitators treat steampunk as a grab bag of tropes available to decorate a paranormal romance. I'm less than impressed. When the steampunk elements are only set-dressing, a book's quality depends on the underlying story, and for most that's poor.

My fave steampunk novel is Elizabeth Bear's Karen Memory, a novel set in a brothel in a west-coast city that might be 19th C. Seattle. (She says its a composite of several cities, but it's mostly Seattle.) What Bear has that a lot of neo-steampunk lacks is wit. Her narrator is charming, and one of the conceits (that prostitutes are licensed by the city as "seamstresses") generates a surprising amount of amusing asides. The tech is a little more preposterous than Gibson & Sterling's, but not unduly so. It's well worth digging up.

*Golden-age SF author Theodore Sturgeon was once interviewed by a snooty critic who asked him how he could justify writing science fiction, when 90% of SF is crap. Sturgeon replied that 90% of everything is crap, and it's become known as Sturgeon's Law.

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 09, 2017 5:33 pm 
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Wanderer wrote:
These all lead directly to tanks. When I was working there, part of my daily tasks was opening those ports, rubbing a 10' long stick with paste that changed color in the presence of water, and dropping it down the holes to see if water had managed to get into the tanks. We called it "sticking the tanks".


Just for curiousity's sake, what would you do if you did discover water?

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And now there was no doubt that the trees were really moving - moving in and out through one another as if in a complicated country dance. ('And I suppose,' thought Lucy, 'when trees dance, it must be a very, very country dance indeed.')

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 09, 2017 5:45 pm 
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AaronFW wrote:
The conversation moves at too great of a pace for me to keep up. (It isn't bad, it just is what it is.)


Don't feel like you can't reintroduce a topic from earlier in the thread, even if the conversation has moved on. We'll cope. The protagonists of the latest conversation will ignore you, and those who were following the earlier topic will re-engage. A win all round. Quote enough of what you're responding to to remind us where to look, and we'll all be fine.

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And now there was no doubt that the trees were really moving - moving in and out through one another as if in a complicated country dance. ('And I suppose,' thought Lucy, 'when trees dance, it must be a very, very country dance indeed.')

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