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Comment Netbeans for Java, PyCharm for Python (Score 1) 141

Is anyone else here using this combination?

I am a longtime Java programmer that has been using Netbeans since 3.x. Recently I have started doing Python projects and found the Python plug-in support for Netbeans 8.x very rudimentary. So I tried PyCharm and found it does what I want and ended up paying the $99 for the personal-pro edition. There are a number of things I don't like about PyCharm and it has a lot of rough edges for a paid-for product but I haven't found anything better yet.

When Netbeans Python support comes up to speed I am not sure what I will do. I am open to suggestion if anyone has one but I suspect I will end up dropping PyCharm for Netbeans.

Comment Raw Milk? (Score 1) 112

It has been established that children that consume clean raw milk have much lower rates of asthma than the general population. The explanation given is that the active microbes in raw milk help build the body's immune system which has much more to do with gut flora than previously known.

I know this has no scientific experience but I know that since I have been drinking raw milk, starting 10 years ago at age 49, I get sick much less often than I used to.

Comment Re:But can it remove ... (Score 1) 60

You don't want to remove cholesterol from your bloodstream. It is a vital substance to many metabolic pathways and a critical component to essential hormones. It is an essential component to your cell walls (without it you could not have a different chemistry inside and outside the cell.) If you applied this device to lower your cholesterol your liver would just produce more.

People have been trained to think of cholesterol as a dangerous poison. For better information go here.

Comment Where did they get the files from? (Score 1) 546

As I recall during the whole Snowden-chase saga, Greenwald stated that Snowden no longer actually had the files with him once they parted ways in Hong Kong. They were never in Russia. And the Chinese probably didn't even know about them before Greenwald parted ways with Snowden. They have concocted planted stories before to try to make Snowden into someone who damaged the U.S. and the U.K. interests. I'll wait to see Greenwald's response before making much of this.

Comment Used Batteries: meh (Score 1) 133

What I don't like about this scheme is that I end up driving my car around with someone else's batteries. With my own battery pack I know what the batteries have been through -- their service record, the conditions they have been in, and also what I can expect out of them in terms of performance because I have been using them recently. When you swap out the battery pack that all goes out the window.

These batteries degrade over time. So I could end up swapping my batteries with 400 hours on them for batteries that have 10,000 hours on them. No thanks.

Comment It makes no sense (Score 1) 77

Has anyone managed to explain why e-voting always fails when the same technology can be used to run a network of online banking and ATM services, backed up with face-to-face tellers (yes they still exist!) to serve those who don't have online access?

I haven't heard that banks are losing tons of money because it is all online and a lot more convenient for me than it was last century. Yes there are crooks but they are quickly detected and dealt with.

If these systems can keep track of trillions of dollars of transactions with an open-ended commitment to each customer surely a single vote per customer constraint should be no problem.

Electronic voting doesn't work only because we don't want to make it work.

Comment Only part of the problem (Score 1) 170

I have less concern than the amount of data being stored as I do the incredible number of files that a typical system stores. Do an ls -lR / on a typical system and you will get tens or even hundreds of thousands of files.

As recently as the days of Windows/NT 4 I could probably keep the gist of the entire structure in my head -- what each sub-tree is for and in most cases what each directory/file is for. Somewhere since then it has become impossible to do so and that goes for Windows, MacOS X, or almost any Linux distribution.

Comment Elon's secret (Score 1) 96

I don't know that much about him other than as an investor, but the thing I have noticed about Elon Musk is that he does the homework. He works the numbers and if they don't add up he does something else. So although it seems to an outsider that he is doing something wild, he is actually keeping to a dry spreadsheet.

Someone who didn't do this might have tried a newer whiz-bang battery technology for Tesla. Or maybe fuel cells. Instead he stuck with "boring" old Li-Ion battery technology because he found a way to make the numbers work. And if that technology improves over what it can do today so much the better.

Maybe someone here more knowledgable than I am about what SpaceX is doing can say if he has done the same thing there. From the article it seems like SpaceX has managed to apply technology to get the price-point he thought was necessary. That suggests to me that Elon did his homework many years ago and did it right.

Comment Re:It had better be reliable! (Score 1) 158

If you are curious about this you should take a look at the electronics that go into airliners. My company makes a circuit board that uses Freescale processors and many other chips and they want us to guarantee availability for another 20 years. In fact I think we have orders on the books through 2026. During that time one of my successors will have the nice job of finding chips to build them if the various silicon manufacturers decide to shut down the line.

On another application we kept a product going for 5 years after the main chip went EOL by working with a company that specialized in licensing EOL designs just for this purpose

The thing about an automotive application in the console is that the "1000 or more parts" PCB that we are talking about can be replaced with an upgrade much more easily than anything that flies. Boeing has $20,000 circuit boards that were designed 25 years ago they still order even though I could replace the whole thing with a $15 FPGA on a $30 PCB today. The reason: you don't mess with flight critical components without millions of dollars of testing. The $20,000 assembly is cheaper.

In contrast the Tesla console could probably be redesigned in a few years with updated components and possibly even 100% software compatible. The barrier to getting it qualified would be far less even though the car is highly dependent on it working. So if you are making a list of things to be worried about in buying a Tesla this shouldn't be on it.

Comment Re:Wow (Score 1) 152

It is not a health concern, and has been used in organic food production for decades before suddenly becoming controversial once genetic engineering got involved.

The difference is that Bt used to be applied topically, and in a relatively short while biologically breaks down so you don't ingest it.

In contrast, Bt corn produces the chemicals internally. The chemicals get ingested intact where before they never were. As a result entire populations of people test positive for contagion of Bt that never were before.

That's my understanding anyway.

Yes, we will be going to OSI, Mars, and Pluto, but not necessarily in that order. -- Jeffrey Honig