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About Apathy

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  • Location
    Utrecht, The Netherlands
  • Occupation
  • Interests
    Psychology, Pharmacology, Medicine
  • Gender
  1. I don't know exactly about your requirements, but I've done a little LAMP'ing myself and it takes a lot of time (and skill...). I'm using Meteor (http://meteor.com/) now for my own project. This has the consequence that you can write everything, client - server - database, in Javascript which means you don't duplicate code and write faster. Good luck!
  2. Hi Pandemonium, I did a course in Bayesian Statistics last year and am in possession of a 750 page handout. If you want it, please send me an IM! Regards, Michel
  3. I'm doing a Master's in statistics and have been using R for over half a year now. It's not as user friendly as SPSS but offers a lot more flexibility. Speed doesn't seem to be an issue for the stuff I use it on. Furthermore, I use a free IDE called RStudio to increase the usability. Conclusion: I like it very much.
  4. I could and would do it. I have no moral objection to voluntary prostitution. Certainly, I would be worried about the higher risk of STD's but I would not be ashamed to ask if they shared their history. I'm also worried about negative lifestyles associated with prostitution but then it's not the prostitution I would be worried about.
  5. The study was not a pharmacoeconomic evaluation (it could be used as the basis of one but that was not the primary objective of the study); I agree that the effect could be different in specific subpopulations but I am not aware of a study where the effectiveness was stratified according to depression severity at the start in such populations. Medications have side-effects and antidepressants can be especially nasty in that department. If it hardly works for mild depression I would therefore not recommend it for that reason, untill other studies show that it does with in specific cases of mild depression. Not for lack of cost-effectiveness, altough that could very well be the case.
  6. In any case, the people that had the least severest symptoms will probably be better off after some time than the people with the most severest symptoms of a disease. In mild depression, there is a huge placebo effect and most mild depressions clear up by themselves. I agree that pills can never be the only solution in depression or schizophrenia: these diseases have psychological and social components that should be addressed as well. By the way, the reference to the meta-analysis that demonstrated that anti-depressants work better in severe cases: http://jama.ama-assn.org/content/303/1/47.short
  7. I agree, it is a citation. But it's hardly convincing. I do not see any references to clinical trials in which the suggested interventions actually fix "any neurological imbalance". Just some extrapolating the results from laboratory studies and a whole lot of, in my eyes unfounded, professional opinions. There is a reason why randomized clinical trials are the golden standard. Randomizing and blinding the treatment to actual human subjects in a large enough number is the best way (and I believe it is the only way) to make progress in medicine. So please provide me with a citation that actually demonstrates that orthomolecular therapy can fix "any neurological imbalance". Then we can start the discussion on the validity of the results.
  8. Clash of Kings by George R.R. Martin
  9. Citation needed.
  10. Haumea, ignoring the circular logic portions of your post ("women are attracted when they feel attracted"), I don't get the point of your post. You seem to be arguing semantics; I never meant to imply a dichotomy of anything. Why would arousal and attraction be opposites? They are not even on the same scale. I do agree however that arousal is 1 but many of the preconditions for attraction. The point of my opening post was that attraction (different from arousal) could be heightened by arousal from seemingly unrelated (i.e. non-romantic) sources.
  11. In the excellent article on misattribution of arousal on the YouAreNotSoSmart blog (http://youarenotsosmart.com/2011/07/07/misattribution-of-arousal/), it describes that humans are bad at explaining to themselves what the source of particular emotions are. For example in matters of romance: men found women more attractive when they met on a dangerous bridge than on a safe one, or before thinking they would undergo painful elektroschocks. I intent to submit this as an supplementary hypothesis for the attraction some women feel to "badboys". They make their girlfriends feel something (or anything) and their girlfriends misattribute this as attraction. This could also explain the inner workings of some PUA techniques: they are designed to make their targets feel something (like negging) in order to misattribute it as attraction. My question to you is this: does this quirk of human psychology explain the attraction to "alphas"? Or are there other more important factors to consider, related or unrelated to this explanation?
  12. Background Meta-analyses of antidepressant medications have reported only modest benefits over placebo treatment, and when unpublished trial data are included, the benefit falls below accepted criteria for clinical significance. Yet, the efficacy of the antidepressants may also depend on the severity of initial depression scores. The purpose of this analysis is to establish the relation of baseline severity and antidepressant efficacy using a relevant dataset of published and unpublished clinical trials. Methods and Findings We obtained data on all clinical trials submitted to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the licensing of the four new-generation antidepressants for which full datasets were available. We then used meta-analytic techniques to assess linear and quadratic effects of initial severity on improvement scores for drug and placebo groups and on drug–placebo difference scores. Drug–placebo differences increased as a function of initial severity, rising from virtually no difference at moderate levels of initial depression to a relatively small difference for patients with very severe depression, reaching conventional criteria for clinical significance only for patients at the upper end of the very severely depressed category. Meta-regression analyses indicated that the relation of baseline severity and improvement was curvilinear in drug groups and showed a strong, negative linear component in placebo groups. Conclusions Drug–placebo differences in antidepressant efficacy increase as a function of baseline severity, but are relatively small even for severely depressed patients. The relationship between initial severity and antidepressant efficacy is attributable to decreased responsiveness to placebo among very severely depressed patients, rather than to increased responsiveness to medication. Source: http://www.plosmedicine.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pmed.0050045
  13. The current medical consensus seems to be that they have no benefit of importance in mild cases of depression, but that they have a benefit in cases of severe depression.
  14. I've heard of bacteriophages - but I didn't know they play a beneficial role in the human body. Bacteriophages don't "eat" bacteria, they infect bacteria and then hijack their machinery just like they do every other cell. Ultimately they lyse the bacteria in order to spread. If they do play a beneficial role in the human body, it wouldn't matter anyway. Here are two reasons why: 1 The bacteriophages would be in the gastrointestinal tract (where all the bacteria are). In case this discovery ever made human administration, they would not put the drug in a pill - otherwise the contents would be digested in the aforementioned gastrointestinal tract and furthermore it would put an extra barrier between the drug and the target (which is the entire body - not the inside of your gut). I'm almost 100% sure they would administrate the drug with an injection, either in the bloodstream or locally. 2. In the experiment they put a specific tag on the drug - so that it would be taken up by human cells that recognized the tag. Large molecules like these do not transfer cell membranes easily through passive means. So it would be unlikely that they could make any significant dent in the population of bacteria infected with bacteriophages - they probably wouldn't enter the bacteria even if they got close enough.
  15. Not all viruses are "RNA"; there are also viruses that have a DNA core. However, viruses survive and thrive by hijacking the infected cell's machinery and they always eventually do this by sending messages to the assembly workers of the cell (ribosomes) - using RNA. It is my understanding that that this drug selectively binds viral RNA - not human RNA. Thus it would be specific to only cells that are infected by viruses.