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Comment: Re: You can replace Windows... But not the battery (Score 2) 118

I have a Dell XPS from 2012 with similar problems:
- no number pad, despite plenty of room for one.
- sealed battery
- slot-load optical drive, which died and took a disc with it.

I only bought it because it had an HD screen which was hard to find at the time. Who cares about an extra 2mm of thickness if EVERY other part of the computer is a compromise?

The Toshiba Satellite p50 looks promising though - a UHD (4K) screen and none of the trendy eye-candy that other manufacturers seem to force on you. Drawer-load optical drive AND a number pad.

I am not employed by Toshiba, but having looked long and hard at various UHD laptops recently this looks like the most useful model if you actually plan to do work with it.

Comment: Re: Agreed. (Score 1) 298

I agree with everything you say except the bit about debating. In debating equal time is given to the "wrong" opinion. Rhetoric and emotional arguments often beat logic, facts and reason. Debating is someone's entertaining to watch, and great for raising a generation of politicians, but terrible at teaching kids how to work out what is true and who is trying to mislead them.

Comment: Re: Cd of 0.36 in the 21st century??? (Score 1) 128

by BeaverCleaver (#48678561) Attached to: Tesla Roadster Update Extends Range

Your commodore has a roof. An efficient sedan shape will have attached airflow over most of the the upper surface, with the air possibly leaving the surface halfway down the rear window but rejoining the skin somewhere along the boot (trunk) lid. A convertible loses this laminar flow as soon as the airflow leaves the top of the windscreen. I'm not sure exactly how big the effect is, but it's significant.

Comment: Re: Good (Score 1) 126

by BeaverCleaver (#48308189) Attached to: Flaw in New Visa Cards Would Let Hackers Steal $1M Per Card

I had a woven stainless steel wallet (for money) and be warned, their abrasive edges wear through your pockets really quickly.

There are Faraday cage wallets that are leather on the outside (presumably they have metal foil inside?) that will be kinder to your clothes.

I've traveled a lot with both kinds and never had any hassles.

Comment: Re:Last time I voted... (Score 1) 268

by BeaverCleaver (#47286501) Attached to: The EPA Carbon Plan: Coal Loses, But Who Wins?

Got any references for those "bird kill" numbers?

Early wind turbines, built in response to the 1970s oil crisis, were indeed a hazard to birds. However new wind turbines are bigger and spin at lower RPM, so they are easier for birds to see and avoid.

I don't know about the USA, but most countries also require and environmental impact statement before building wind turbines. These days, if they are proposed right in the middle of an area with high golden eagle populations, they don't get off the drawing board.

Comment: Not to criticise his efforts but. .. (Score 1) 83

by BeaverCleaver (#46846123) Attached to: Man Builds DIY Cellphone Using Raspberry Pi

I built one using a picaxe + GSM module in 2010. It was pretty challenging fitting enough AT commands in the limited eeprom on the picaxe. Worked great on the protoboard but I never bothered making a PCB for what is really a pretty pointless device. Even in 2010 I could have bought a better phone for $20. GSM modules are really useful: using one to make a phone seems like a waste! They're much more interesting for things like remote monitoring or smart SMS-enabled devices...

Comment: Re:A bigger x86 BeagleBone Black? (Score 1) 97

I got one from Adafruit - they run out all the time but seem to get new stock frequently. I've basically given up on Element14 though - I ordered from them in November. First the ETA kept slipping back, now they don't even show an ETA. It's a sorry state of affairs when Adafruit can ship one to me in Australia, from New York, about ten times faster than the local supplier (and still counting!)

Comment: A bigger x86 BeagleBone Black? (Score 1) 97

The $50 BeagleBone Black has many of these features and more GPIO, but lacks RAM and has only one CPU. The ODROID series can be specced with multiple ARM cores. This "Minnow" seems like the next step up, for users who really need SATA, lots of RAM and multiple x86 cores. There's probably a big enough niche for portable/cheaper PC-based hardware for this to find traction, but for anything that doesn't need x86 or huge RAM there are cheaper options. I just hope the supply issues with the BeagleBone Black get sorted out soon!

Remember, UNIX spelled backwards is XINU. -- Mt.

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