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Comment: Re:Many small solutions through a day (Score 1) 162

by AaronW (#49547889) Attached to: Apple Watch Launches

I wear my watch all the time, including in the shower. I like it because it does one thing well, tell me the time and date. I never have to set it except for daylight savings (it synchronizes itself every night) and I don't have to wind it up or charge it (it charges itself via solar). It's also waterproof to 100M and pretty tough (I tend to be hard on watches). If it breaks I'm also not out $600 and it won't go obsolete in a year.

Comment: Re:Landing vs splashdown (Score 1) 341

My father was is engineer who worked on some aerospace and defense stuff while I was growing up. He worked on a data recorder that went up on Skylab. He offered to fly up and fix it if anything went wrong. My mother has always been big on astronomy. I've been Elon Musk's various ventures for quite a while (and ended up buying a Tesla). I've always been impressed with his forward thinking and the smart people he surrounds himself with. My day job is working on the U-Boot bootloader and a little Linux kernel work. Maybe someday it'll even be pushed upstream, but right now it's always not enough time and it's a LOT of code, significantly more than all of the ARM SOCs combined.

Comment: Re:Landing vs splashdown (Score 4, Interesting) 341

A couple of months ago I was having a discussion with a fellow from Space X who designs the hydraulic systems and we spoke about a number of issues. This was right after the failed landing due to it running out of hydraulic fluid. I asked about how reusable the engines are and he said that they run test burns lasting hours. The launch is only a few minutes. According to what he said, it should just be a simple matter of refueling and adding more hydraulic fluid and probably some other simple things without having to do a major overhaul. The engines are very reliable.

I asked about why they don't reuse the hydraulic fluid and he said that it was cheaper and lighter to not reuse it. He also said that they knew it could run out and that the next version would have more.

Comment: Re:Not Brick (Score 2) 179

by AaronW (#49451519) Attached to: Google Lollipop Bricking Nexus 5 and Nexus 7 Devices

I had this problem and after trying several things I finally found a solution: Buy an Anker USB cable. I tried just about everything else with my tablet. I have a USB power meter. The Nexus 7 2012 seems to be extremely sensitive to the resistance in the USB cable. The Anker cable is much fatter than most cables I've tried. Before I switched to this cable I've had my tablet go dead while plugged into the charger.

Here's what else I tried:
I replaced the USB connector on my tablet (fairly easy to do). This helped but I still had problems.
I tried numerous chargers including the Anker charger, which helped but didn't solve the problem.
I tried many different USB cables. Some would help briefly but none ever charged quickly, the best one was the stock one that came with the tablet, but even that didn't work too well.

Once I switched to the Anker cable I was able to charge at over 1A for the first time. None of the other cables came close and I tried a lot of cables, including the Amazon Basics cables (which are otherwise nice cables).

Comment: Re:Missing the point. (Score 1) 330

by AaronW (#49407727) Attached to: Inexpensive Electric Cars May Arrive Sooner Than You Think

Hydrogen is not cleaner and generates more greenhouse gases than a decent hybrid or diesel vehicle. The only way to make hydrogen in an affordable manner is to crack natural gas. You use 20% of your energy capacity of the hydrogen just compressing it. And the hydrogen must either be generated on-site (around 70% efficient) or transported in tanker trucks which aren't very efficient for the energy density. Fuel cells also suck. They're maybe 50% efficient at best and quickly start to degrade. By 70K miles the fuel cell output has dropped to around 70% of its rated capacity and have dropped considerably in their efficiency.

The Tesla battery typically contains over 90% of its original capacity at 100,000 miles.

Fuel cell cars right now are very heavily subsidized and don't make a lot of sense. They're certainly not very green when you take into account the well to wheel efficincy. A hybrid vehicle or a diesel vehicle is more efficient than a hydrogen fuel cell vehicle.

Comment: Re:Reeeal modern, like before Amazon (Score 1) 197

That's what I ran into years ago when I ordered my Prius. I could get any car I wanted as long as it was white or possibly black. I wanted neither and a certain set of options. I had to wait 6 months to get the car I wanted, and it was my 3rd choice for color. They kept offering me white cars which I didn't want.

When I ordered my Tesla I chose exactly what color and options I wanted. I still had to wait 6 months but I got exactly what I ordered. The service I've gotten from Tesla is far better than the service I have gotten at any dealership by far.

The dealers like to make the claim that they protect the consumer. This is total BS. My father bought a Fisker Karma (I tried to talk him out of it) and once they went bankrupt, so did his service and warranty support.

Comment: Re:First attack 2nd amend, and then 1st amend (Score 1) 538

To understand her position you need to understand where she's coming from. She's probably one of the few politicians to have seen gun violence first hand. She was there when the SF Mayor George Moscone and Supervisor Harvey Milk were assassinated. She grabbed Harvey Milk's wrist to check for a pulse and her finger entered one of Milk's bullet wounds and was badly shaken by the event.

See the Moscone Milk Assassinations.

Comment: Re:Woop Di Do Da! (Score 5, Insightful) 265

The sad part is that states like Florida are making it harder to install solar. On top of that, Florida is fighting energy efficiency. Other states are adding fees to solar users at the behest of the utility companies.

I live in California and am getting solar installed later this week though not nearly as big of a system as I'd like due to limitations of my roof. PG&E has some of the most expensive electricity in the country because of our state's corrupt public utilities commission. Average rates are around $0.194/kwh (compared to Santa Clara $0.113/kwh). PG&E has been quietly lowering the thresholds to push people into higher tiers of power as they make their homes more energy efficient. On average I'm paying well over $0.19/kwh so solar makes perfect sense.

There's no sense in being precise when you don't even know what you're talking about. -- John von Neumann