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Comment: Re:20-40% overblown (Score 1) 332

by Kjella (#49793129) Attached to: How Tesla Batteries Will Force Home Wiring To Go Low Voltage

That takes care of the first 20%... but what about the cheap AC->DC transformers that sit between your house wiring and your devices? I'd love to be able to switch each outlet I have between 110VAC/15a, 12VDC/3-5a and 9VDC/500Ma-2a, and do away with wall warts altogether.

Since you have different DC voltages you either need DC wall warts (not achieving anything), per outlet transformers (sounds expensive and turn the socket into a wall wart) or one circuit per outlet (sounds expensive and needs big conduits). And because of fire risk, property damage and whatnot you'll never get to use the same plug, tripling each outlet. Then you need something fancy to flip each socket at the source and what part of the socket is powered at the sink in a safe way, for every outlet. And I doubt 9VDC/500mW-2A matters much economically, if you want the aesthetics embed the wall wart in the wall, it'll probably be less hassle than the alternatives.

Comment: This is a great idea (Score 3, Interesting) 261

I've been buying solar panel units here in Seattle that are placed on public buildings through our Seattle City Light program, since my townhouse faces north, and it works even if I sell the house and buy another one somewhere in Seattle (costs about $150 per unit, due to large scale installations that drop the costs).

As to poor people using solar panels, some cities way up here give homeless veterans Tiny Houses (250 sq ft) with solar panels on their roofs so they don't have to camp outside.

Adapt. Cause emissions don't care about your excuses, and change is now.

Comment: Re:Answer (Score 5, Informative) 303

by rjh (#49785011) Attached to: How Much C++ Should You Know For an Entry-Level C++ Job?
unique_ptr<T> is normally preferred over shared_ptr<T> -- the former is zero-overhead compared to a pointer, while the latter has a reference count associated with it which has to be incremented and decremented. If you know two or more things will be using the pointer and you don't want to have to worry about ownership semantics, shared_ptr<T> makes a lot of sense. If you know only one will be using it, unique_ptr<T> makes more sense.

Comment: Re:Reworded (Score 0) 152

by Kjella (#49782979) Attached to: Heat Wave Kills More Than 1,100 In India

Heat Wave in India kills 9,1666666666666666666666666666667e-5% of its population.

Nerd fail, invalid use of significant digits ;). Though I was thinking the same thing, one in a million doesn't seem very significant. It's like 5 people dying in my country of 5 million, that's one bad car crash not exactly dropping like flies.

Comment: Re:They're missing the point... (Score 1) 266

by Kjella (#49781035) Attached to: How To Die On Mars

You life a life of adventure and challenge, and die young in one of the many tragic accidents that your inhospitable environment causes on a regular basis.

Fair enough, many climb Mount Everest for no better reason.

You pioneer a new way of life,

Well mostly you'll be living in a bunker living off a long supply chain from Earth. It'll be a lot like living on a submarine that you mostly endure rather than pioneer. Many will envy you going, not so many the actual living conditions.

and there's a good chance of your name going down in history books.

Name the third guy to set foot on the moon. I'm not saying there's no fame, but there's many easier ways to celebrity status. Except if you're the next Neil Armstrong.

You contribute to something that may change the course of history.

True. But I imagine it'll be a rather unglamorous and unthankful task. Remember that you're a million miles away from any fans or fame, no vacations or time off and it's unlikely any amount of money will get you fresh bacon and eggs.

And as for changing the world, they won't send you up there just to be a warm body. If you can change the world up there, you can probably change the world down here too. There's thousands of people who can say they contributed to the Apollo program, even though they never went to the moon.

Comment: The only crisis is a German Bank Crisis (Score 1) 741

Look, we actually have documents (go look at wikileaks, no I won't do your work for you) that prove that Germany has been instrumental in making sure that Greek milliionaires avoiding taxes aren't followed to their Swiss deposits and other tax frauds.

The only problem is that the German Banks might have to suffer a loss for Liar's Loans they made under the Goldman Sachs "promises" that Greece could be in the EEC (EU monetary combine), which even internal German audits show was known to be a lie.

The banks losing their money is what is supposed to happen when they make bad loans.

That and the lack of repayment by Germany for the war looting of Greece during WW II, which has never been repaid.

Does Greece have a strong economy? No, but it never has.

Is there massive tax fraud in Greece? Yes, but there always has been.

Is this a major risk for the EU? No, because .... wait for it ... Greece is less than 0.1 percent of total EU GDP. Total.

All the rest is sturm und drang by Reichsmarshalls in Den Stadt.

+ - The Scientific Method and the Art of Troubleshooting

Submitted by writes: Karl Popper came up with the idea in the 1930's that scientists should attempt to falsify their hypotheses rather than to verify them. The basic reasoning is that while you cannot prove a hypothesis to be true by finding a number of different confirming instances (though confirming instances do make you more confident in the truth), you can prove a hypothesis to be false by finding one valid counter-example. Now Orin Thomas writes at WindowsITPro that you’ve probably diagnosed hundreds, if not thousands, of technical problems in your career and Popper's insights can serve as a valuable guide to avoid a couple of hours chasing solutions that turn out to be an incorrect answer. According to Thomas when troubleshooting a technical problem many of us “race ahead” and use our intuition to reach a hypothesis as to a possible cause before we’ve had time to assess the available body of evidence. "When we use our intuition to solve a problem, we look for things that confirm the conclusion. If we find something that confirms that conclusion, we become even more certain of that conclusion. Most people also unconsciously ignore obvious data that would disprove their incorrect hypothesis because the first reaction to a conclusion reached at through intuition is to try and confirm it rather than refute it."

Thomas says that the idea behind using a falsificationist method is to treat your initial conclusions about a complex troubleshooting problem as untrustworthy and rather than look for something to confirm what you think might have happened, try to figure out what evidence would disprove that conclusion. "Trying to disprove your conclusions may not give you the correct answer right away, but at least you won’t spend a couple of hours chasing what turns out to be an incorrect answer."

+ - Amazon Germany pays 0.1% tax rate in 2014, funnels sales through low-tax haven->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes: E-retail giant’s German branch paid just 11.9 million euros (approx. $16 million) in tax last year, equivalent to a 0.1% tax rate considering the company reported $11.9 billion in gross sales in Germany in 2014. German corporate income tax stood at 29.58% last year which would mean Amazon Germany would have been expected to pay $3.5 billion in tax in 2014. is the group’s largest and most successful market outside of the U.S., according to its annual sales records. However following investigation it has been revealed that almost all of the company’s German sales and profits were reported from businesses in Luxembourg, a low-tax haven. Amazon said last week that it had implemented a number of changes across Europe, including in the United Kingdom, Germany, Spain and Italy from May 1st, in order to ensure that future sales would be managed in the countries themselves.
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Why do this in the first place? (Score 3, Insightful) 90

Why do this in the first place?

Unlike the desktop, most people use the browser supplied with their smartphone/tablet. Apple doesn't allow any application competing with their own as far as I know and on Android Chrome is a central part of Google's all-or-nothing package of apps and services. Maybe they think that for once they'll be the default browser on something. Then again, they're not a first party browser on the desktop either so why they need to have delusions of grandeur I don't know. What I do know is that they have zero chance of pulling off a whole mobile ecosystem with apps and everything. Even Microsoft struggle like hell and they have poured billions into Windows Phone, the Nokia buyout and whatnot.

Comment: Re:Lets be honest here (Score 2) 106

by Kjella (#49768891) Attached to: No, Your SSD Won't Quickly Lose Data While Powered Down

My first OCZ Vertex - the original one - I did nothing to optimize it and spent as temp drive for everything, including torrent downloads that I later archived. It does 1.5 years later after eating through a 10k writes/sector endurance, if I read the SMART data right it had 9.6k write average and 14k writes worst case. My replacement drive from WD I did all the basic stuff to optimize and kept my torrents to a HDD, it lasted about 3.5 years and the lifespan indicator said it should have another 1.5 years left but one day it just wouldn't boot.

Now I have a Vertex 450 (before you say anything it's for boot and gaming, I keep my documents on another drive...) and it has 9589 power-on hours, that's 400 days and 96% life left. At this rate, it should last 25 years or more. It seems to me they've done a lot to fix write amplification and other issues, that easily killed some of the early drives if you actually used them.

Comment: Re:flat as a pancake: invasion pending (Score 3, Interesting) 233

by Kjella (#49768651) Attached to: Microsoft Tries Another Icon Theme For Windows 10

The same thing happened to OS X and iOS. What once was clear and easy to understand is now pretty and mostly useless.

Strange how so many people around the world choose to use these "mostly useless" products. I'm not saying it's all for the better, but the "OMG I can't use this app it has a ribbon" people really should find some kind of job frozen in time where nothing will ever change. Funny enough, this place is crawling with all sorts of new languages yet very few go like "OMG I must learn a whole new syntax and standard library", then it's like change and multiple skills is no problem at all. Whatever they throw at me I'm sure I'll find a way to work with it...

The first rule of intelligent tinkering is to save all the parts. -- Paul Erlich