Human Factors – the Del Key

On my occasional-use laptop, the Ins, Del, Home and End are all nestled together – too close for my fingers to use reliably – and labeled with letters that are too small for my eyes to see reliably.  Of these four keys, I use the Del key the most.  (Not as much as the BackSpace key, of course, but it is both uniquely sized and positioned).
A couple of days ago…Eureka!  I cut out a little post-it note and put in on top of the Del key.  Problem solved?  No, it wasn’t solved.
I used a red Post-It note, thinking it would be easy to see and that the colour would be a clue to its function. I was half-right.
Now when I need to delete something, the Del key is easy to see but, unconsciously, I avoid touching that red key.  I find myself (days of occasional use later) seeking the Del key on either side of the red key.

Rob Ford: he’s human; he deserves better

Rob Ford’s doctors ‘very concerned’ about cancer reappearance, spokesman says – Toronto – CBC News

“The current goal is to get him healthy enough to receive another round of chemotherapy.”​

Whose “goal” is this? It must be the doctors’ goal – not Ford’s goal and not his family’s.

A lot of social activists object to medical research that inflicts pain/suffering on animals.  Where are they when Rob Ford needs them?

I encourage everyone interested in the relative value of “heroic” medical procedures on patients with terminal disease to read Being Mortal by Atul Gawande, M.D. “…when it comes to the inescapable realities of aging and death, what medicine can do often runs counter to what it should.”


Saudi Foreign Affairs Minister on Daesh and the KKK

​The American-educated Saudi Foreign Affairs Minister delivers a canned speech on the Middle East and on Saudi internal affairs. Ho hum. What I liked was his response (starting about 12′ 30″) to a question about Islam’s alleged intolerance of other religions, as exemplified by Daesh/ISIS.​ In effect, he says that you could learn as much about Islam from ISIS as you could learn about Christianity from the Ku Klux Klan.

The voters are boss. Like it or lump it.

Interesting parallels between GOP tribulations over a nut-job who was just elected as chairman of a Republican county office in Texas and similar tribulations at the national level regarding Donald Trump. In a democracy, for better or worse, “the voters are boss. Like it or lump it.”

Source: In Robert Morrow spectacle, an ugly reminder for the Travis County GOP that voters, not leaders, are boss | | Dallas Morning News

Pressure builds, lungs shrink

​I rarely read book reviews but I stumbled across an interesting factoid in a review of One Breath: Free-diving, Death and the Quest to Shatter Human Limits in the Jan 27/16 issue of The Economist: “At 20 metres, the body loses its buoyancy. Pressure builds, the lungs shrink, gravity exerts its pull. The diver goes into free fall, carried ever deeper away from light and into blackness.” (The physics are dramatic but in the back of my mind I’m visualizing Sen Marco Rubio.)

A question for the “What if …?” author: How high would a diving board have to be for you to jump off and plunge 20 metres under the surface?​