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strangerguy
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Re: Theranos

Wed Apr 19, 2017 9:33 am

derFunkenstein wrote:
Talk about getting off easy. :roll:


"Justice" systems worldwide are hopelessly lopsided in favor for the rich, and the real crime is everybody thinks it's OK that way because deep down all of them dreams to be the one who is "screw the rules, I have money!"
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Re: Theranos

Wed Apr 19, 2017 9:43 am

Keep in mind that this is just the Arizona AG. They're still getting sued or investigated by a bunch of other people too (Walgreens, investors, SEC, etc.), so it ain't over yet.

I don't think there will even be a carcass left for the vultures to pick at by the time the dust settles.
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Re: Theranos

Wed Apr 19, 2017 9:46 am

just brew it! wrote:
I don't think there will even be a carcass left for the vultures to pick at by the time the dust settles.

Or a turtleneck.
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Re: Theranos

Sun Apr 23, 2017 3:23 pm

The deeper people dig, the worse it gets: https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/201 ... equipment/

They used a shell company to secretly purchase other vendors' lab equipment, to hide the fact that their own equipment didn't work.
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Re: Theranos

Sun Apr 23, 2017 5:17 pm

To fail so spectacularly on such a massive, pubic stage as Holmes has done is quite a feat for a 33 year old. I cannot imagine how she's ever going to have a career after this. At least a professional one that requires investors or even a shred of trust. She's simply another cute sorority girl who, given power and control, turned out to be all flash and no substance. At least when Mayer jumps out of the back of the Yahoo plane as it nears its crash site, with a smug grin on her mug, she is going to land on a $500M pile of money. She will have zero credibility, but being worth a cool half-billion, she will have no need for any. Not a bad payday for being cute and able to use buzzwords.

I'm guessing Holmes doesn't have enough cash to retire, so she's going to have to find something else to do after all of the dust clears. I can't imagine what it's like to cause that kind of train wreck at such a young age and then have to try to live it down in the professional world that is going to have less than no respect for anything she has to say.
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Re: Theranos

Sun Apr 23, 2017 5:28 pm

Given her connections and skill at spin, she may have a future in politics.

Aside from that... her speaking skills are probably overkill for delivering lines like "Would you like any cash back today?" or "Would you like fries or a shake with that?", but there's always retail and fast food.
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Re: Theranos

Sun Apr 23, 2017 5:44 pm

She could helm the sour cream gun at the Bell...

It has to be a terrible thing to wake up to every morning only to realize that, at 33, your life has become a cautionary tale. Those silly turtleneck sweaters are not going to save her from being branded a charlatan for many years to come. Even Mayer didn't crash and burn to the degree that Holmes has, and Mayer is a textbook study on what happens when a utterly unqualified person takes over a huge company as the CEO.
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Re: Theranos

Sun Apr 23, 2017 5:57 pm

The Swamp wrote:
It has to be a terrible thing to wake up to every morning only to realize that, at 33, your life has become a cautionary tale.

Thing is, I'm not sure she actually sees that. While I'm increasingly certain that she's just a really good con artist, I think it is still possible that she was delusional and really bought into her own RDF; in that case, all the shady stuff that went on was -- in her mind -- just a temporary means to ultimately achieve an end that she believed (and perhaps even still believes) was within reach.
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Re: Theranos

Sun Apr 23, 2017 7:34 pm

I'm going with delusional, myself. Given her age and background I would bet cash money that she won a lot of participation trophies in her youth, has been told all her life that she's the most special-est thing ever who can do no wrong, and that anyone who dares question anything about her is a horrible troglodyte who's clearly just jealous of her specialness. I expect to see a lot more of this as the snowflake generation begins to inherit positions of authority and influence.

In other words, this whole unfortunate incident is probably a conspiracy by The Man to oppress a brilliant visionary who understands the importance of breaking rules and applying the 'test it in production' ethos to fields where mistakes lead to dead people and massive lawsuits. But rulebreaking is only good when she does it, naturally; other people aren't allowed to because they're not special enough.
 
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Re: Theranos

Sun Apr 23, 2017 7:44 pm

I initially had that view as well; but as additional details have come out, my opinion has shifted somewhat. Maybe she believed her own hype at first, but got in way over her head when stuff didn't go according to plan and was grasping at straws for a way out. At the end of the day, it's quite a stretch to think that she didn't realize the stuff Theranos was doing these past few years was wrong.

Regarding the "I'm special, rules don't apply to me" mentality, it seems the same sort of thing is coming back around to haunt Uber lately.

I used to work with a guy like that too... was about the same age as Holmes, in fact. Thought none of the rules applied to him, and kept making ill-advised personal and career decisions as a result. TBH I was amazed he wasn't dead or in jail by the time he was in his mid-20s, given some of the stupid sh*t he pulled (and bragged about).
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Re: Theranos

Sun Apr 23, 2017 9:24 pm

just brew it! wrote:
I initially had that view as well; but as additional details have come out, my opinion has shifted somewhat. Maybe she believed her own hype at first, but got in way over her head when stuff didn't go according to plan and was grasping at straws for a way out. At the end of the day, it's quite a stretch to think that she didn't realize the stuff Theranos was doing these past few years was wrong.

A Fawlty Towers plot trope, IOW.
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Re: Theranos

Mon Apr 24, 2017 5:41 am

It's a generation of narcissists, if you will.

It's clear she saw herself as the next Steve Jobs, even down to dressing like he did. Of course, Jobs was the real deal. She is just a wannabe with a cute figure.
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Re: Theranos

Mon Apr 24, 2017 5:58 am

The Swamp wrote:
It's a generation of narcissists, if you will.

It's clear she saw herself as the next Steve Jobs, even down to dressing like he did. Of course, Jobs was the real deal. She is just a wannabe with a cute figure.

And friends in high places, apparently. Just being cute doesn't convince two former US Secretaries of State (and other assorted high-ranking government officials) to join your board.
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Re: Theranos

Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:00 am

The Swamp wrote:
It's a generation of narcissists, if you will.

It's clear she saw herself as the next Steve Jobs, even down to dressing like he did. Of course, Jobs was the real deal. She is just a wannabe with a cute figure.


If you ask me she's just yet another symptom of the massive corporatist PC culture that is plaguing the world, where mentioning anything that even remotely sounds negative is tantamount to heresy.
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Re: Theranos

Mon Apr 24, 2017 7:40 am

JBI wrote:
And friends in high places, apparently. Just being cute doesn't convince two former US Secretaries of State (and other assorted high-ranking government officials) to join your board.


That's more indicative of the bad joke known as Corporate Governance than anything else. I *wish* it were specific to Theranos, but it's not. These boards literally do nothing, they are simply about paychecks & junkets for the connected. Hideous and shameful, and the stick-beatings should be broadly, not narrowly, applied.

It's an incredibly serious and deep problem, and it's not just the boards: We've gone from gigantically disparate dual-class stock becoming common place to Snap now offering no-class stock (in which your "equity" carries absolutely no governance rights at all, not even a fig-leaf).

We're coasting on a predominately informal system of trust in which all the secondary formal constraints are rapidly being removed. That's a recipe for situations like this, and it's only going to get worse.

I don't even know where to start/stop, it's all interrelated: We also have a "private" market that is, for almost all intents and purposes, a public one. Actually, I'm underplaying it, it's almost worst: Some of these unicorns are literally at the point the IPO is the problem. The "private" market (which is often the public market just abstracted away i.e. mutual funds) is flush with tens of billions of dollars in cash, all poured into valuations that are increasingly having trouble going through the hurdles of actually going public.

In other words, it seems to be easier to raise funds privately than publicly. Again, I'm understating to the point of almost lying: the IPO isn't about raising funds at all at this point(Uber has a burn rate of like 2 billion a year, so getting money is obviously not a problem), it's about paying back in the initial investors with new investor money.

What does that remind you of?

:evil:
 
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Re: Theranos

Mon Apr 24, 2017 7:58 am

"I think that the minute that you have a backup plan, you've admitted that you're not going to succeed." - Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes
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Re: Theranos

Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:41 am

NovusBogus wrote:
I'm going with delusional, myself. Given her age and background I would bet cash money that she won a lot of participation trophies in her youth, has been told all her life that she's the most special-est thing ever who can do no wrong, and that anyone who dares question anything about her is a horrible troglodyte who's clearly just jealous of her specialness.

The Swamp wrote:
It's a generation of narcissists, if you will.

It's clear she saw herself as the next Steve Jobs, even down to dressing like he did. Of course, Jobs was the real deal. She is just a wannabe with a cute figure.


As someone of her age, I can tell you that you are both about 10-15 years early on the whole entitled participation trophy generation. Holmes probably thought her **** smelt like roses because up until she graduated from college it probably did smell like roses. The biggest fault I see with people in my generation is a strong divide between those who are book smart and those who are street smart. You can be 4.0 dean's list student your whole life and still fail utterly the moment you enter the real world and find yourself no longer dealing with hypothetical theory in a lab environment. Holmes probably is one of those that could recite a text book to you but have no idea what any of it actually meant or how to actually apply that to a real case scenario. She likely never felt like she was wrong in what she was doing because she probably had someone else's case study put to memory to back it up, and if she read it in a book then it has to be true.
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Re: Theranos

Mon Apr 24, 2017 9:40 am

She never finished her undergrad degree; she dropped out of school to start Theranos. Which fits with the Jobs narrative.
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Re: Theranos

Mon Apr 24, 2017 10:01 am

The Swamp wrote:
It's a generation of narcissists, if you will.
It's clear she saw herself as the next Steve Jobs, even down to dressing like he did. Of course, Jobs was the real deal. She is just a wannabe with a cute figure.


She's looking more frazzled than cute here:
https://techcrunch.com/2017/04/21/thera ... ign=buffer

Will this result as a text book case to re-emphasize sound scientific methodology? Hopefully, because I think if this had gone further without the scrutiny and investigations it could have led to medical mis-diagnosis in a bad way. Thankfully this was exposed sooner than later. Reminds me of the Flint, Michigan public water system incident where money/politics/image interfered with the regulatory source-water analysis tests. Wrong decisions from a few resulted in a wide negative health impact on a large population.
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Re: Theranos

Mon Apr 24, 2017 10:17 am

For those who remember the original days of Monday Night Football, I bring you "Dandy" Don Meredith.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X9xQlcvNlxg
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Re: Theranos

Mon Apr 24, 2017 10:53 am

G8torbyte wrote:
She's looking more frazzled than cute here:
https://techcrunch.com/2017/04/21/thera ... ign=buffer

Read the banner in the background. It's three years old. Like most articles about Theranos these days, they just pulled an older photo that was particularly unflattering.

Although the company is well and truly screwed and so are the people who had tests "performed" by Theranos.
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Re: Theranos

Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:16 pm

Anovoca wrote:
NovusBogus wrote:
I'm going with delusional, myself. Given her age and background I would bet cash money that she won a lot of participation trophies in her youth, has been told all her life that she's the most special-est thing ever who can do no wrong, and that anyone who dares question anything about her is a horrible troglodyte who's clearly just jealous of her specialness.

The Swamp wrote:
It's a generation of narcissists, if you will.

It's clear she saw herself as the next Steve Jobs, even down to dressing like he did. Of course, Jobs was the real deal. She is just a wannabe with a cute figure.


As someone of her age, I can tell you that you are both about 10-15 years early on the whole entitled participation trophy generation. Holmes probably thought her **** smelt like roses because up until she graduated from college it probably did smell like roses. The biggest fault I see with people in my generation is a strong divide between those who are book smart and those who are street smart. You can be 4.0 dean's list student your whole life and still fail utterly the moment you enter the real world and find yourself no longer dealing with hypothetical theory in a lab environment. Holmes probably is one of those that could recite a text book to you but have no idea what any of it actually meant or how to actually apply that to a real case scenario. She likely never felt like she was wrong in what she was doing because she probably had someone else's case study put to memory to back it up, and if she read it in a book then it has to be true.

You're not wrong on the details, of course, which is why I chose my words carefully to ascribe blame where it belongs. I am also a borderline millennial d-bag, actually a few months younger than Holmes. The GPA thing is a perfect example...I was never even close to being high school valedictorian because I 'only' had a 4.1 or 4.2 GPA on account of skipping a couple of AP courses in favor of interesting vocational stuff. Show up, take the test, get a perfect score even for the advanced stuff. If you don't get a perfect score, obviously something's gone horribly wrong because the world we were brought into wants and expects mass produced perfection and is willing to set a pretty low bar to get it. The net result is that most of the reasonably smart kids won't know the difference between reasonably smart and true greatness until leaving academia and promptly getting bitch-slapped by reality. Which is fine for a room full of entry level guys, but bad things happen if the student goes straight into a position of authority such as we have here.

edit: In fairness to my upbringing I should probably note that the schools I went to legitimately were some of the best in the region, and most of us went to top tier universities. But my point stands, this sort of thing was already becoming a thing by the late 90s and Elizabeth Holmes is certainly young enough that she may never have been presented with any evidence that she's not the second coming of Steve Jobs or Thomas Edison.
 
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Re: Theranos

Mon Apr 24, 2017 9:57 pm

NovusBogus wrote:
the world we were brought into wants and expects mass produced perfection and is willing to set a pretty low bar to get it. The net result is that most of the reasonably smart kids won't know the difference between reasonably smart and true greatness until leaving academia and promptly getting bitch-slapped by reality. Which is fine for a room full of entry level guys, but bad things happen if the student goes straight into a position of authority such as we have here.

Very true, had a hard dose of reality myself transitioning from a community college as an A-student to a large public university. Almost flunked out my first semester in engineering but learned next semester to get serious and be self-disciplined since the professors at the university level don't give a flip who showed up to the auditorium-size class. They were more concerned with their research projects/grants than the students.
I read an article this morning as I was wondering what defines generational categories:
http://www.marketingteacher.com/the-six ... n-america/
I'm in the Gen-X range when mainstream personal computer use was beginning to dawn and I can relate to "Raised in the transition phase of written based knowledge to digital knowledge archives"
There were no instant answers back then or just "goog'lin it." I remember going through the university labyrinth of library "stacks" to find and cite physical periodicals, books and encyclopedias.
I do enjoy the digital convenience these days but I think the patience and process of research is lost on younger folks. It can lead to short-sightedness and taking short-cuts with bad results.
Sheesh, I feel like a geezer now.
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Re: Theranos

Mon Apr 24, 2017 10:38 pm

By the definitions on that linked page I'm a Baby Boomer, but there's some disagreement as to exactly where the line between Boomer and Gen X is. I'm basically on the cusp of Boomer and Gen X.

I was an "early adopter" when it came to the computing revolution, cobbling together an 8-bit CP/M system while I was still in high school, before the IBM PC existed (and roughly contemporaneous with the Apple II and TRS-80).

College was a bit of a wakeup call for me as well. "What do you mean I actually have to study to get decent grades?" :lol: Breezed through most of my CS courses (because that's what I was interested in and I had already taught myself a fair bit of it), but the rest of it was a slog.
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Re: Theranos

Mon Apr 24, 2017 11:04 pm

just brew it! wrote:
By the definitions on that linked page I'm a Baby Boomer, but there's some disagreement as to exactly where the line between Boomer and Gen X is. I'm basically on the cusp of Boomer and Gen X.

I was an "early adopter" when it came to the computing revolution, cobbling together an 8-bit CP/M system while I was still in high school, before the IBM PC existed (and roughly contemporaneous with the Apple II and TRS-80).

College was a bit of a wakeup call for me as well. "What do you mean I actually have to study to get decent grades?" :lol: Breezed through most of my CS courses (because that's what I was interested in and I had already taught myself a fair bit of it), but the rest of it was a slog.

Hmm, this sounds eerily similar. There are some schools of demographic thought that look at 1960-1968 births as their own little micro-generation, neither Boomer nor X. I certainly don't identify with either beyond preferring Boomer music over X music.

Computing started with the PDP-8/E, then the Trash-80 Dad brought home to hook in to his new office minicomputer over a 300-baud acoustic coupler modem, later upgraded to a 1200 baud merde-hot Racal-Vadic coupler modem.

And yes, college was a HUGE wakeup or, should I say, I should have woken up. I cruised through high school but, upon hitting college a year younger than I should have (parental hopes & psycho-drama not appropriate for here) plus hitting a college crowd that was 65% Metro NYC with me from dinky Rutland, VT (pop 18,000), I did what any other socially-inept rural teen would have done. And yes, ethanol was involved. IIRC, large quantities of delivery pizza were as well. If I had not found my way to the geek/D&D fraternity house, I doubt I would have made it through. My brothers all had similar experiences and it's why we all still get together these days 30+ years after graduation.
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Re: Theranos

Mon Apr 24, 2017 11:19 pm

NovusBogus wrote:
You're not wrong on the details, of course, which is why I chose my words carefully to ascribe blame where it belongs. I am also a borderline millennial d-bag, actually a few months younger than Holmes. The GPA thing is a perfect example...I was never even close to being high school valedictorian because I 'only' had a 4.1 or 4.2 GPA on account of skipping a couple of AP courses in favor of interesting vocational stuff. Show up, take the test, get a perfect score even for the advanced stuff. If you don't get a perfect score, obviously something's gone horribly wrong because the world we were brought into wants and expects mass produced perfection and is willing to set a pretty low bar to get it. The net result is that most of the reasonably smart kids won't know the difference between reasonably smart and true greatness until leaving academia and promptly getting bitch-slapped by reality. Which is fine for a room full of entry level guys, but bad things happen if the student goes straight into a position of authority such as we have here.

edit: In fairness to my upbringing I should probably note that the schools I went to legitimately were some of the best in the region, and most of us went to top tier universities. But my point stands, this sort of thing was already becoming a thing by the late 90s and Elizabeth Holmes is certainly young enough that she may never have been presented with any evidence that she's not the second coming of Steve Jobs or Thomas Edison.


Really, I've met a lot of folks a lot older than me who were lazy, and a lot who were my age or younger and worked really hard.

It's not a generational issue. It's a "Human beings are often idiots" issue.
 
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Re: Theranos

Tue Apr 25, 2017 7:44 am

I.S.T. wrote:
It's not a generational issue. It's a "Human beings are often idiots" issue.


Indeed!

Even in this thread it seems that, whether aged ~20-~60, people seem to have a similar "college wake-up call" experience.
 
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Re: Theranos

Tue Apr 25, 2017 7:48 am

just brew it! wrote:
Breezed through most of my CS courses (because that's what I was interested in and I had already taught myself a fair bit of it), but the rest of it was a slog.

That sounds very familiar. I'm thrilled that I don't have any more gen eds to take.
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Re: Theranos

Tue Apr 25, 2017 11:56 am

I think college does that to a lot of 'smart' people. I was near the top of my high school graduating class, but it was not a spectacular high school. I entered engineering school along with the best of many graduating classes, and was solidly in the bottom half the entire way through. The first class I ever failed was Differential Equations, and the second time I only got through with a 'D'-for-Done.
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Re: Theranos

Tue Apr 25, 2017 12:25 pm

ludi wrote:
The first class I ever failed was Differential Equations, and the second time I only got through with a 'D'-for-Done.

Sounds similar to my experience with Calculus. Placed out of 1st semester Calc due to AP credit, started to lose my way in 2nd semester Calc, and barely squeaked by with a D in 3rd semester Calc (IIRC I was failing that class as of the midterms). In hindsight, probably should've just started with 1st semester Calc even though I'd had the AP class in HS.

Strangely, things turned around with Differential Equations, and I did OK in that. Something about being able to relate all the Calculus mumbo-jumbo I'd been struggling with to physical phenomena helped, I guess. People look at me funny when I tell them this...
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