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Comment: Re: There can be only one. (Score 1) 443

by shutdown -p now (#49828145) Attached to: Choosing the Right IDE

Sure, but that's more of a problem with C++ (being a language that is not designed to be tool-friendly) than it is with refactoring in general - and it was the doubt about the latter that was the original topic of this thread. For languages like Java or C#, refactoring is very reliable, and very convenient because if that.

Comment: Re:You're Talking About a Different Scale (Score 1) 239

by ultranova (#49827715) Attached to: Professional Russian Trolling Exposed

I just don't think those tactics would work all that well within the US. It seems like whenever an organization DOES try an astroturfing campaign ("Citizens for Enhanced Comcast Monopoly") it gets spotted so quickly for what it is that it seems to achieve negative results.

Russians aren't idiots, they simply think things will get better if they pretend to believe the lies and let their country and its leaders engage in one immoral act after another - just like Americans, or really anyone. And their reward is the same, too.

Comment: Re:par for the course (Score 1) 239

by ultranova (#49827611) Attached to: Professional Russian Trolling Exposed

The professional Russian trolls are about as subtle.

Do we know Cold Fjord is not a Russian troll? After all, he's making American patriotism look bad by associating it with authoritarianism.

Thing is, you don't need to be very good at trolling if you are working full time at it. You will always get the last word against people who has better things to do than to argue with paid trolls.

You will always get the last word, and then what? The point of such trolling is to disrupt, to keep people arguing over stupid shit forever so they're too busy to discuss Putin's failures or what to do about him; if other posters ignore him, he has failed.

Comment: Re:Memory erased by cosmic rays (Score 3, Interesting) 211

by Rei (#49825305) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Your Most Unusual Hardware Hack?

Oh, god, space technology is full of brilliant hacks. For example, New Horizons' radio. It has two amps connected to one dish, designed as a primary and a backup. But while it was en route, an engineer hit upon an idea to have them both transmit at the same time through the same dish, doubling the bandwidth. Normally that wouldn't make sense, except that the amplifiers have signals with different polarization, and these can be separated back out on Earth.

Great, except for one problem. The second radio was designed as a backup, they weren't planned for simultaneous operation - so there's not enough power to run them both and everything else at the same time. There's barely enough power to run just the radios - and I mean, it's not like you can just shut off the flight computer to free up more power. Well... actually, that's exactly what they do. When have a ton of data accumulated that they want to get to Earth and no critical science to do, they spin the craft up like a bullet to keep it stable and the dish pointing at Earth. Then they shut down the whole guidance and control system and pretty much everything else on the craft not essential for reading and transmitting data. It stays in this mode for days for a week or two, until all of the onboard data is transmitted, then they spin it back down so that they can do things like take pictures once again.

Comment: Re:Same performance different Memory Capacity (Score 1) 152

More than two, as development for games started at least two years before console releases. But if you look at costs sunk into current consoles, and how long previous generation lasted, you'll understand that current generation is highly unlikely to start showing its age as long as it can perform fine in the handful of PC exclusives that will actually put it under serious load like Star Citizen.

Comment: Re:It's very real (Score 1) 239

by Luckyo (#49824967) Attached to: Professional Russian Trolling Exposed

Wait for Dutch investigators to come up with the actual evidence and then we will likely be able to have at least something to base . All you'll see before that is punditry.

Current body of evidence is entirely inconclusive on all points but #1, answer to which is "royalties in hard currency for a highly corrupt state".

Comment: Re:par for the course (Score 1) 239

by Luckyo (#49824823) Attached to: Professional Russian Trolling Exposed

Russia has been late for pretty much every post Cold War new front party. Looks like they were late for this one as well. Israel's version of this was documented half a decade ago, and US version has been reported to be moving from using people to developing automated software back in 2011.

Looks like they're late once again.

Comment: Re:Insurance? (Score 1) 146

by Rei (#49823191) Attached to: Cool Tool: The Nuclear Fuel Cycle Cost Calculator

Quite a few of us how have them, yes and that includes "environmentalists". Sure, they're not without their problems, environmentally, but they have a quite a few upsides as well.

What sort of environmentalists have you been hanging around with? Environmentalist opposition to dams is so well known that "blowing up dams" is one of the cliche stereotypes of "eco-terrorists".

The aspect of Price-Anderson that people complain about is that the US government foots the bill for the vast majority of costs in the event of a catastrophic accident.

Sure, but what I was pointing out (in a roundabout way), is that the same is effectively true of any large scale infrastructure system, especially when it comes to power generation on a massive scale. Doesn't matter if the cost comes from a hydro electric dam that fails, or a coal ash slurry dam failure, or a major oil spill, or indeed a release of radio nucleotides.

What on Earth are you talking about? Did the government foot the bill after the Deepwater Horizon incident? After any of the coal ash slurry failures? Of course not, the companies responsible did, and it cost them an utter fortune. The difference here is that unlike with nuclear power, their liability is uncapped. With nuclear power, the liability in the case of catastrope is a cost borne by taxpayers.

If that much money is at stake there are many ways for those that earn money off of the business to protect themselves from damage. Bankruptcy is always cheaper than insurance.

Which is why BP and the coal mining companies responsible are now bankrupt?

And FYI, industries carrying major risk are effectively required to have what amounts to insurance against those who go bankrupt. It's called Superfund, and it's supported by taxes on polluting industries - a "polluter pays" principle. Price-Anderson is based on a "public pays" principle. The money to cleanup in the event of a major nuclear disaster (over $12B) doesn't even come from a levy on the nuclear power industry. In fact, there is no money there for such a cleanup, the government is just supposed to come up with it if it happens. Fukushima for example is expected to cost over $100B in direct cleanup costs alone, let alone the much larger potential liability for claims.

So, it doesn't matter if the nuclear industry doesn't have insurance, since many/most other human endeavours on that scale doesn't either.

Um, yes they are. You mention Deepwater Horizon. Are you unaware that it was insured, with liability coverage?

To wit the Exxon Valdes spill and the legal aftermath. It didn't seem to hurt Exxon nearly as much as it did Prince William sound.

To wit, once again, the company didn't go bankrupt. They minimized the cost through a very effective legal campaign, of course. The government did not socialize the damages; it remained their responsibility to pay them. The fact that they managed to weasel out of having to pay a lot of what they should have paid doesn't change who the responsible party was. Nor does it make it logical that the solution to companies like Exxon weaseling out of payments is to have the government assume liability for major disasters and let those who caused them off the hook.

Comment: Re:Thorium (Score 1) 146

by Rei (#49822087) Attached to: Cool Tool: The Nuclear Fuel Cycle Cost Calculator

The Soviets were hardly unique in terms of bad reactor design. Have you seen the design used for the British Windscale plant? It makes you want to hit your head against a wall when you read it. They literally just stuck canisters of fuel into holes in the wall, hit them in by hand with ram rods, and hoped that the old canisters would fall out the back into a narrow trench of water. The designers got mad and nearly derailed it when one physicist wanted to put a really trivial pollution scrubber on the stack; they taunted him over it afterwards for wasting money. Now, saying "canisters" makes it sound fancier than they were, they were basically glorified aluminum cans full of highly flammable uranium, stuck into a hot reactor. Then they changed their fuel mix that they put inside without redoing any of the engineering. Including having them full of more flammable stuff like lithium and magnesium metal. And then they cut off the cooling fins from the canisters. Their monitoring was so poor that when the system inevitably caught fire they didn't notice it for days. They then went down there and started poking around in a hole with the ramrod; it came out covered in molten uranium.

Chernobyl was a paragon of safety compared to Windscale.

Comment: Re:Insurance? (Score 3, Interesting) 146

by Rei (#49821883) Attached to: Cool Tool: The Nuclear Fuel Cycle Cost Calculator

First off, who's extolling the virtues of hydroelectric dams? Dams usually fall on environmentalists' hate lists at around the same place as coal, give or take a few slots.

Extolling the virtues of wind or solar, yeah. But you better believe a wind farm operator will be sued if a turbine falls on someone's house, or a solar thermal plant if their mirrors misalign and blind a pilot. And for that matter, you better believe that a hydroelectric dam operator will be sued if their dam breaks (at least in the first world). And most companies willingly insure their large projects as a hedge against risk.

The aspect of Price-Anderson that people complain about is that the US government foots the bill for the vast majority of costs in the event of a catastrophic accident. The power plant operators only need to insure enough to foot the bill to insure against minor accidents, something most operators would want to do anyway to protect themselves. Many people find the capped liability to be a highly distorting influence on the market, socializing the risks while keeping the profits private.

Never let someone who says it cannot be done interrupt the person who is doing it.