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Comment Re:better late than never (Score 1) 72 72

Which is part of the siting and site analysis process that failed to keep a plant that was not designed to be hit by a tsunami out of the path of a tsunami.

It's the post-bean-counter phase of design. Engineers find a site which will work, bean counters fuck it all up, just like I said.

Comment Re:better late than never (Score 1) 72 72

Putting generators on pylons is a tremendous oversimplification of what would be needed to design to withstand a tsunami.

In this case, it probably would have done the job; emergency power would have been available to keep things running.

Plants are designed for floods up to a certain level. It is up to the siting analysis to determine where you can place the plant and auxiliaries

You know the site was actually lowered substantially to make construction cheaper, right?

Comment Re:Local CO2 (Score 2) 50 50

further, co2 isnt' an an air pollutant. it doesn't cause ozone, smog, bronchitis, heart disease or cancer.

But increased levels of CO2 actually found in (some relatively extreme) workplaces in the USA do have significant negative health effects! Occupational CO2 exposure limits have been set in the United States at 0.5% (5000 ppm) for an 8-hour period.[88] At this level of CO2, International Space Station crew experienced headaches, lethargy, mental slowness, emotional irritation, and sleep disruption.[89] Studies in animals at 0.5% CO2 have demonstrated kidney calcification and bone loss after 8 weeks of exposure.[90] Another study of humans exposed in 2.5 hour sessions demonstrated significant effects on cognitive abilities at concentrations as low as 0.1% (1000ppm) CO2 likely due to CO2 induced increases in cerebral blood flow.[91] [...] Higher CO2 concentrations are associated with occupant health, comfort and performance degradation. ASHRAE Standard 62.1â"2007 ventilation rates may result in indoor levels up to 2,100 ppm above ambient outdoor conditions. Thus if the outdoor ambient is 400 ppm, indoor concentrations may reach 2,500 ppm with ventilation rates that meet this industry consensus standard. Concentrations in poorly ventilated spaces can be found even higher than this (range of 3,000 or 4,000). Keep in mind that levels under 5,000 ppm can cause negative health effects; that's just the level at which our government says you have to do something about it.

It is highly relevant what CO2 levels are like in our cities, and the things you said are completely irrelevant to that fact.

Comment Re: like the lightbulbs that last virtually foreve (Score 1) 160 160

I think people notice incandescents fail right when being turned on rather than just crapping out while they were already running. I don't know if this is selection bias and these events are just more noticable than the other types of failure.

I'm quite sure that they fail right when turned on more in this house, but I've got almost all of them replaced with Cree lights now that they are dirt cheap at the home despot. Except I've got a $1 CFL over the stove, where the most lights died, and it's been a peach.

Comment Re:better late than never (Score 1) 72 72

I do kind of wonder about one thing, though... why are the engineers who designed that beast not being indicted? After all, nearly all of the vital pumps and generators were in the basements of both the Daiichi and Daini sites,

Yeah, now go research what area residents thought about putting generators on pylons, where they would have had to be in order to be useful in this incident. They didn't want them there. Wonder how they feel now?

The truth is that engineers will always say "this is what we need to do" and then bean counters or executives or lawyers get involved and say "well this is what we're doing so work it out" and then you can either feed your family or quit and maintain your principles and oh by the way, about that recommendation...

Comment Re:Major change? No. (Score 1) 247 247

NT4 was released shortly afterwards and wasn't a bad OS, but hampered by the lack of plug-and-play support and perpetually having old versions of DirectX.

In NT4 they merged the User and GDI memory spaces which were separate in 3.51, and made it trivial for the user to asplode the machine in pursuit of graphics performance... which as you point out, they did not actually ever achieve in NT until Windows 2000. This is the precise moment that many people gave up on NT and went to using Unix for their servers even when they had Windows on their desktops.

Comment Re:Major change? No. (Score 1) 247 247

Those folks who came up with the CDE that inspired em all knew what they were doing...designing a GUI that WORKED.

The CDE toolbar was hilariously baroque because Unix users were used to having too much screen space, and the window behavior was not-at-all changed from MWM. Microsoft was on the Motif WG, which is why Windows 3.1 and MWM have almost exactly the same windowing behavior, resize grab handles, window management widgets, etc. CDE was also not the first Unix WM to feature a persistent menu; that accolade has to go to NeXTStep, which also placed it in a more logical location.

The single menu bar of the Apple style, a holdover from the mainframe days of yore, did beget the taskbar. And now we have taskbars with start buttons on every desktop. But you can't give CDE much credit at all. It's wholly derivative, and most of what it is... is actually MWM

Comment Re:MenuChoice and HAM (1992) (Score 1) 247 247

And, of course, I meant 'to shortcuts' there.

.desktop files provide the full range of functionality which came from a .PIF and then some, but shell scripts provided everything but the standardized icon and descriptive text output formats before either thing was a thing.

Comment Re:MenuChoice and HAM (1992) (Score 2) 247 247

Whereas in Windows your desktop has your shortcuts, and the Start menu lists the apps installed in the filesystem.

No.

This is a consequence of how the two OSes started out. MacOS was coded from the start as a GUI, so logically the desktop is the root of your filesystem. Windows was originally a shell running on DOS. So all your files were stored in the DOS filesystem, and originally the desktop just had shortcuts to your program and data files.

OK, also no.

On the mac, the desktop was always for doing work. On the PC, the desktop didn't exist until Windows 95 (ignoring non-Windows operating systems) because in Windows 3.1 it was just a place to store icons of running programs. It wasn't a desktop as we know it, where you can put anything, like on the Mac. On the mac, the desktop was useful before the OS even had shortcuts, known as aliases. You could drag stuff there from your hard drive, and the system would remember that those icons were supposed to show up on the desktop.

On the PC, the start menu most certainly does not "list the apps installed in the filesystem". Just like the Mac, if you want to find that, you have to dig down into the HDD. The start menu on the PC contains shortcuts exclusively by default. You can stick anything you want in there, of course. As for the desktop, the computer no longer even appears there. By default, the only things on the desktop are the trash, shortcuts which can be placed there by programs which want to seem important, and any documents you've saved there... plus any shovelware shat there by any OEM you may have purchased your PC from.

Before Windows had a desktop as we know it, it had two primary interfaces; a program manager and a file manager. The program manager only showed shortcuts (.PIFs) and the file manager would show you the full filesystem view. From there you could run .exe files. I don't actually remember if the program manager would run a PIF, ISTR that it would but I am not sure any more and do not care enough to find out. The program manager became the start menu, always available at the click of a button and ordered with folders and subfolders instead of single-depth "program groups". The file manager became explorer and provides the desktop (which became just another file view) as well as folder windows.

Comment Re:This tells you everything... (Score 1) 247 247

win9 had even status on some background apps.

I presume you mean win7. Actually you could get previews on XP from Nov 2009 with the "Alt-Tab Replacement Task Switcher" power toy. Win7 actually manages to show previews of minimized directdraw and direct3d windows, which is almost impressive.

Comment Re:Difficulty (Score 1) 247 247

The 'tray' that Raymond describes in his second article looks very much like the Shelf from OPENSTEP 4.1, which was released just after Windows 95. I wonder if some of the NeXT people were playing with early betas of Windows 95 and, as their company CEO later quipped, started their photocopiers...

Windows 95 copied NeXT's interface (the look, anyway) and not the other way around. NeXTStep goes way way back without changing much.

Comment Re:Difficulty (Score 1) 247 247

And if you're trying to target your product to be usable for the average joe, and an astrophysicist can't figure it out, you can assume that you missed your target.

You can assume all you like, but I'd sit that astrophysicist down and try to figure out why he couldn't understand such a simple interface, mostly shared with Unix of the day, before I'd assume that I'd made a mistake. Maybe the guy is great at math but shit at everything else? We don't all think the same way.

Comment Re:BBC - hammered by its own Political Correctness (Score 1) 193 193

However with the loss in revenue the BBC will feel over this and the inevitable failure of the Chris Harris led Top Gear,

The internets have been calling for a Chris Harris-led Top Gear since the show was cancelled... it's got a fair shot if it doesn't try to be the old show.

... when fits of creativity run strong, more than one programmer or writer has been known to abandon the desktop for the more spacious floor. -- Fred Brooks

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