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Comment: Re:Pumped storage and transport (Score 1) 215

by fyngyrz (#47812659) Attached to: Power Grids: The Huge Battery Market You Never Knew Existed

The advantage is that it will create a constant current in the canal.

Regardless of the length of the canal -- at least until evaporation becomes a factor.

The constant current can be leveraged to move boats, presumably fairly deep hulled so the really get in the way of the current, and said boats can carry whatever.

Two canals adjoining allows the boat to be moved from one to the other, and sent back to the other end, ad infinitum.

When you put a cork in a river, it'll go from the mountains to the sea, because the current carries it.

What I'm suggesting is create an artificial current using pumps. The two 'c's run in different directions, so you have a full transport loop.

All four ends are physically adjacent, so you only need one pumping station if you connect the two c's across one end.

Old time canals used donkeys and engines to navigate. This works like a river and a raft. You float to where you're going.

Comment: Re:Which site "collapses"? (Score 1) 126

by vux984 (#47812573) Attached to: New HTML Picture Element To Make Future Web Faster is a VERY small mobile-centric site, with very little content and some presentation logic to optimize its mobile presentation on desktops.

The articles page for example shows 5 one-line article summaries at a time even on a 1920x1200 desktop. To see all 25 articles I need to page through 5 pages.

  Its usable at this tiny content scale, but its hardly a good desktop design; and if there were much more content its usability limitations would become increasingly apparent.

Likewise, the home page, on desktop, is reflowing to a single 8-10 screen tall vertical column anything but gratuitous? Practically nobody on a desktop is going to want to USE the site like that.

Is horizontal scrolling really better?

On this site, yes. I think it would have been. If the user makes their window that small they probably are trying to just keep one piece of the page in the window, and reflowing forces them to have to re-locate that piece in a 10 page tall stack after they've resized the window, instead of it just staying put.

Additionally, they get rid of the menu button as the screen widens? Why do that? I don't object to them adding the menu to the title bar when it fits, but why lose the one element of common navigation between the two modes?

To sum up... yeah this isn't a bad site... but its barely more than a toy project. It does a decent job because there's almost nothing to it.

And I bet it cost then fortune.

Comment: Re:Pumped storage and transport (Score 1) 215

by fyngyrz (#47812513) Attached to: Power Grids: The Huge Battery Market You Never Knew Existed

> You're assuming you'll get free energy out of this?

Um... no... where would get such an idea?

Think about it. If you put a transport thing in there (think boat) with a nice deep hull, and there's a 5 knot current along the entire canal created by the transfer at the ends of the C, what will the boat do? Now add another boat at a reasonable interval, say another boat length.

Do you imagine doing this will slow down either the current or the other boat?

That's the point, and that's all I am assuming.

Comment: Re:Can anybody tell me, please (Score 1) 126

by fyngyrz (#47812481) Attached to: New HTML Picture Element To Make Future Web Faster

That depends on the DPI. My phone, very small indeed, is 1080x1920 (or 1920x1080 if I'm holding it funny.) One of the monitors on my 8-core desktop is 1280x1024.

The DPI difference between them is radical. Even so, any properly designed page will allow the user's browser to resize and reflow the content to fit the window if it's of any sane width (probably only wide enough to render the longest word in the content.) If it can't do that, the browser should hand you scroll bars. Be nice if the browser had a user setting "minimum width before scroll bars", too. That'd be a joy.

Fixed aspect / resolution webpages are horrible.

That, and "hover" menus and windows are the #1 reason why I surf away from web pages.

Tip to "designers": If I didn't CLICK on it, I didn't WANT it, and that means ITS IN MY FUCKING WAY

(cough) Sorry.

Comment: Re:Can anybody tell me, please (Score 1) 126

by fyngyrz (#47812357) Attached to: New HTML Picture Element To Make Future Web Faster

Desktop screens have had two sizes in the past 10 years to my knowledge: 4:3 and 16:9 (or close to it),

Irrelevant. All you really need to know is that pixels are square. It's been some time since we had to deal with non-square pixels. Everything else should be up to the user's browser window.

Comment: Re:Sigh... (Score 1) 366

Ironically enough, my source for this idea was Walter Wink's "Powers" series, which is about taking a close look at the Bible and what it has to say about power (hence the name) and social institutions, and how these can be regarded as living things in their own right. And even more ironically, that idea meshes quite well with Dawkin's ideas about cultural memes being analogous to genetics.

Comment: Re:Window size and pixel density in what header? (Score 1) 126

by fyngyrz (#47812283) Attached to: New HTML Picture Element To Make Future Web Faster

> A single combination of web browser and operating system can be used on both low DPI displays and high DPI displays.

If the image is wider than the window, you get scroll bars; also, browsers can resize. It's not the server's job. We don't have a bandwidth shortage. We have a decently flexible content shortage. If you know it's a mac or a PC, you know it's got a desktop range of pixels. Likewise any particular smartphone. There's no mystery here worth noticing.

Don't resize images with the viewport. That's very annoying. They should reflow with the window according to the browser's settings. If you set a constant width, then you're asking for scroll bars if the window can't fit that width. This all works very well. It has for a long time. Stop trying to make it not work.

Just because you can do something, doesn't mean you should do something. You could make both the text and the background black -- but you wouldn't, right? Because it's highly unfriendly, to say the least. Well, so is locking the user's browser view to particular widths and heights and sizes and positions. HTML was intended as the content provider; the browser intended to be the content formatter, using only hints -- lines, paragraphs, font styling, etc. The closer you can get to that in web page design, the better web page designer you are, because then the user gets to fit the thing into the window the user wants it to be in.

Every time I run into a page that makes me resize my browser to make the damn thing work, I curse. Every time. Every time some whackjob decides that menus should drop or windows should open when my mouse pointer crosses some object, I curse. Every time I run into some page (like's) that won't run its cart or checkout through the usual standard ports and protocols, when everything else from Amazon to the tiniest little retailer and back to EBay will, I try to find somewhere else to shop.

Stop trying to be clever with the page. Instead, be clever with what you put on the page.

Comment: Re:Mashable sucks in other ways too (Score 1) 126

by vux984 (#47812267) Attached to: New HTML Picture Element To Make Future Web Faster

" But those are fixable problems if only Mashable management had the sense to correct the design."


"You're not claiming that the very opportunity to do width transitions wrong justifies removing the media queries feature entirely, are you?"

I'm claiming that proposing a responsive design using media queries as a solution to designing a site for desktop and mobile users is generally more work and harder to get right than just building two separate sites.

To make a (flying) car analogy:

"Responsive design" is to the problem of wanting a single website for mobile and desktop websites what "roadable aircraft" are to the problem of wanting a flying hover car. They are not simpler, or easier. They are a 'solution' only in the loosest sense of the word.

That's not to say that its not possible to build a decent one, but when you are working with a web developer on a site, and you say "ok, what about mobile?" and if he says "No problem, I'll use a responsive design" that's a HUGE red flag to run away screaming.

"Responsive designs", are called the "solution" to the problem of mobile and desktop design, but its a solution the same way roadable aircraft are a solution -- they're clumsy, they're fragile, they are vastly more expensive to produce and maintain, and most people don't really want to use one.

Should we take away the ability of people to produce them? Of course not, but web designers should pull their heads of out their collective asses and stop promising flying hovercars and then delivering poorly conceived roadable aircraft.

Anyway, badly done viewport width transitions are consistent with other problems I see on Mashable, such as that damn "infinite scrolling"

Agreed 100%. Although I contend that its not even all that good on mobiles either.

Comment: Re:Sigh... (Score 1) 366

War has been avoided many times.

So it has. Humans are, after all, also living creatures with their own agendas, such as survival. But every time war is avoided, how is that treated? Like we had won a terrible fight against a great enemy?

Or simply read what you wrote. Yes, war has ben avoided. You could replace "war" with "the Great Cthulhu" or "Slenderman" in that sentence and it would make just as much sense. War is not just an unfortunate failure of diplomacy. It's more, a pattern of behaviours inherited from our ancestors that are always there, suggesting a particular response to any perceived situation. And that pattern has been activated once again, and is guiding people's responses towards WWIII.

Comment: Re:Sigh... (Score 1) 366

Not forced into a corner exactly, but there are a lot of people who regard themselves as Russian living there and who he is expected to defend.

Why is Putin expected to defend people living in Ukraine? Isn't that the job of Ukrainians? There are Mexican nationals living in the US as citizens, is it the job of the Mexican government to protect and defend those people or is that the job of the US government?

Their government, whatever you think of it, was overthrown and they wanted to go back to Russian rule.

The solution for that problem is to move to Russia. That's where Russian rule is. If Ukraine is under Russian rule, then that's an obvious problem in itself.

Comment: Re:Sigh... (Score 1) 366

"No more financial ties to Russia?" They're neighbors, it's like not all ties instantly evaporate. Gas still goes through Ukraine to get to Europe, right? It's not like Ukraine, regardless of leadership, will ever be completely and utterly separated from Russia, regardless of leadership. Both countries will continue to trade with each other because they're neighbors. Even North and South Korea have various economic agreements.

Comment: Re:Sigh... (Score 3, Funny) 366

the new Mexican state is openly hostile to Americans and is threatening to exterminate them.

This is just a hypothetical, right? Not actually based on true events, correct?

What would I do? Well, I guess I would probably threaten to nuke Mexico. That clearly seems like the obvious and rational choice. That would most definitely move popular support in my favor, and people would not think that I am legitimately psychopathic. I would also send several thousand troops down to Mexico to bombard and lay siege to various towns while claiming that those soldiers are actually lost and/or on vacation with all of their military equipment, because that would allow me to both intervene militarily, and also let the world know that I am in no way in control of anything that my armed forces do. And of course I'll shoot down a civilian airliner, because it's not a party until someone shoots down a civilian airliner, but then I'll claim that I didn't do that and people will eventually forget it happened anyway. I'll also claim that Mexico was really always a part of the US, and so I would invade and annex the Yucatan peninsula, because why not? Then I'll meet the new democratically elected leader of Mexico and shake his hand while making a weasel face like this, and I'll have the leader of Canada stand behind me ready with the double-stink-eye.

Or I'll just tell everyone living in Mexico who would rather live in the US that they should probably just move here. I'd probably do one of those two though.

Comment: Re:Why the fuck is this on Slashdot? (Score 1) 366

But he was not only person using fighting words. At a youth forum on Friday, Vladimir Putinâ(TM)s nuclear threat was simple.

"I want to remind you that Russia is one of the most powerful nuclear nations. This is a reality, not just words."

Itâ(TM)s the first time in more than 25 years that Moscow has raised the spectre of nuclear war. The difference this time is that its tanks are already pouring over its western borders.

"A great war arrived at our doorstep, the likes of which Europe has not seen since World War II,â Ukraineâ(TM)s Defence Minister Valeriy Geletey wrote on Facebook overnight, warning of âoetens of thousands of deaths".

Putin appears to agree.

Italian newspaper La Repubblica reports Putin has told the outgoing European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso: "If I want, I take Kiev in two weeks."

Okay... short of posting the entire fracking article, the context doesn't seem to be the problem.


Okay-- now imagine Obama responding,
âoeI want to remind you that America is one of the most powerful nuclear nations. This is a reality, not just words.â

And then saying to the prime minister of UK,
"If I want, I take Moscow/Havana/etc. in two weeks."


Short of Putin coming out and saying, "I'm going to bomb Ukraine with nuclear missiles during the next two weeks"... it was about as threatening as a head of state can get.

This is the problem with a closed circle jerk news system.

It is surely a great calamity for a human being to have no obsessions. - Robert Bly