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Comment: Re:Drop solar heat for direct conversion (Score 4, Informative) 521

by AnotherBlackHat (#47712191) Attached to: Solar Plant Sets Birds On Fire As They Fly Overhead

Except you can not exceed the solar power that hits the surface of the planet from the sun.

There are actual, serious, plans to put solar in orbit. Solar isn't limited to the surface of the planet.

But let's ignore that power-in-sky thinking for a moment.
The amount of sunlight that hits the Earth is an astronomical 150,000,000,000,000,000 Watts.
That's around 1000 times man's total energy usage.

To put it in per capita terms;
At noon, 1 square meter on the surface receives about 1 kilowatt of energy.
The average over a day is 4 kilowatt hours per square meter.
A typical home is 100 square meters, and uses 24 kilowatt hours a day.
At 12% efficiency, you only need to cover half the roof with photovoltaics to supply 100% of that homes electric needs.

Comment: Re:us other engineers matter, too (Score 4, Insightful) 371

Valuing people by their number of direct or indirect reports makes a lot of sense. If I am one of a group of ten people and I'm 20% more productive than the others, my extra contribution only adds about 2% to the total. If I am a good manager my staff might be 5% more productive than an average manager's.

If you're good you should be in charge of more people, but being in charge of more people doesn't make you good.
Or to put it another way, just because a position is important doesn't mean the person in the position is.

Comment: Damned if you do. (Score 1) 560

"We know you did it, so until you confess, we're going to hold you in contempt of court."

The court is claiming that they really, truly, pinky swear know he did it, because they heard him say so, so that whole "can't force you to testify against yourself" thing doesn't apply.

I don't believe the spirit of the 5th is that it doesn't apply when we know you're guilty.

Comment: Math is hard. (Score 2) 394

by AnotherBlackHat (#47254005) Attached to: Cable Boxes Are the 2nd Biggest Energy Users In Many Homes

A typical set-top cable box with a digital recorder can consume as much as 35 watts of power, costing about $8 a month for a typical Southern California consumer.

A "typical Southern California consumer" pays less than 20 cents per kWh.

35 Watts * 24 hours/day * 30 days/month = 25,200 Watt hours or 25 Kilowatt hours.
25 Kilowatts * $0.20/Kilowatt hour = $5.00

Comment: It won't help (enough) (Score 1) 125

by AnotherBlackHat (#47124963) Attached to: Imparting Malware Resistance With a Randomizing Compiler

Viruses in nature mutate randomly. Computer viruses don't.
Computer virus designers are intelligent, hostile, and evil in intent.
If there's a way around it, they'll find it and it's game over.

Besides, many if not most attack vectors wouldn't care a whit - tricking a user into executing code would still work, SQL injection, cross site scripting...

Comment: Betteridge said it best: No. (Score 2) 304

First of all, 3440x1440 isn't better than 3840x2160.
If you really truly believe that a 21.5 aspect ratio is better than a 16:9, you could put a piece of tape over the bottom 500 lines of a "standard" 4k display and still end up with a higher res.

How about building a display panel that doesn't have edges?
Give me a dozen megapixel panels and a let me arrange them however I like.
Make them modular, interchangeable, cheap, and the whole display becomes expandable.
Or improve the power efficiency, or the cabling, or the weight, or the color depth, or... any of a dozen other things I care about more than the aspect ratio of a single panel.

If you absolutely must claim that one aspect ratio is superior to another, then why not go with the golden ratio?
At least that way you can put two together and still have the same ratio.

Comment: Unless it doesn't. (Score 3) 310

Maybe the reason those kids aren't paying attention is because they are learning stuff elsewhere and feel you're just wasting their time.
Or maybe it is, as the union suggests, because they realize how lame school is by comparison.

Or maybe kids are paying better attention now then they have in the past, and the union is falling for the golden age fallacy.

The limited evidence available also indicates that home computer use is linked to slightly better academic performance.

I'll take that limited evidence over the "no evidence" supplied by the teachers union.

Comment: Food printers (Score 1) 400

There's an amazing technology called "seeds".
These "seeds" grow into actual, eatable food.
Even better, they're solar powered and the feedstock is water.
And to top it off, one of the things these "seed" machines can manufacture is more seeds!

Thanks to this technology, the future will be filled with people who grow their own food, and things like supermarkets will become a relic of the past.

Comment: Re:The slides... (Score 1) 347

by AnotherBlackHat (#46334485) Attached to: NSA and GHCQ Employing Shills To Poison Web Forum Discourse

A slashdot sock puppet could follow the classic ideas in "The Gentleperson's Guide To Forum Spies (spooks, feds, etc.)"

Slashdot moderation makes it a lot harder. For example, off topic rants are down modded to oblivion, and the structure of the reply tree make forum sliding much more difficult.
It would be far easier for the NSA to destroy Slashdot by buying it, then changing the way the forum works.

Comment: Re:Fine. Let's have "Oranges vs. Orange equivalent (Score 1) 734

>Okay, compare a contemporary battery...

No, that's precisely my point - don't compare a tiny subsystem of the car and pretend that's the whole problem.

It's not just the fuel, or the fuel plus the fuel tank.
It's the fuel, the tank, the engine, the wheels, the cooling system, the exhaust system - basically everything.

Comment: Apples vs. Oranges. (Score 1) 734

Gasoline is a fuel.
Batteries store fuel (electricity).
Batteries are roughly comparable to gas tanks, not gasoline.

If for some reason you just want to only compare the fuels, compare gasoline to electricity.
One gram of electricity is more energy than you get from One tonne of gasoline. It's about 9 orders of magnitude better, energy density wise.
It's a completely bogus comparison too, but it at least it is more sensational.

For a fair comparison, compare the weight of everything it takes to make the wheels turn;
The gas, the engine, the cooling system/radiator, tail pipe and muffler, drive train, air filter, and so on, with everything on an electric car.

The devil finds work for idle circuits to do.