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Comment: Bleeding Edge Victorian Consumer Technlogy (Score 1) 641

by Bo'Bob'O (#46791209) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Tech Products Were Built To Last?

My grandmother has a petal operated singer sewing machine from the early 1930s that still works beautifully.

Sewing machines were a Victorian era household marvel, and really one of the first pieces of modern engineering technology that came into the home. Many were so well built it's not at all uncommon to find them still in great operating condition. You can easily find operating models from the 1800s in any antique store.

Comment: Re:Re the winter 'misery' (Score 1) 60

by Bo'Bob'O (#46518075) Attached to: Nate Silver's FiveThirtyEight Relaunches As Data Journalism Website

Yes, because clearly the only reason we are concerned about the climate is how much we are complaining and not little things like agriculture and fresh water supply.

Those 'minutiae' that would have been lost in the static to other generations sometimes became trends that became drought and famine.

These kinds of things can and do still happen in many parts in the world, and the first-world may not be immune to major shifts

Comment: Re:Google Voice still being actively developed (Score 1) 166

by Bo'Bob'O (#46493339) Attached to: Goodbye, Google Voice

He must be the only developer working on it because google voice has been about exactly the same for what, 5 years? I really liked Google voice, it's amazing for someone who travels internationally and a great way to interact with people using SMS. But it's had these problems for years, and hasn't changed more then slightly in all these years.

I mean, just as an example, when Google came out with IP calling from the web, they added it to gmail and not voice, even though it uses your voice phone number. They -still- haven't added those features into the Google voice portion of the app/webpage.


Scientists Build Three Atom Thick LEDs 54

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the smaller-better-faster dept.
minty3 tipped us to news that UW researchers have built the thinnest LEDs yet: a mere three atoms thick. Quoting El Reg: "Team leader Xiaodong Xu, a UW assistant professor in physics and materials science and engineering, and his graduate student Ross, have published the technique in the latest issue of Nature Nanotechnology. They report that the LEDs are small and powerful enough to be used in optical chips that use light instead of electricity to shuttle signals and data through a processor, or they could be stacked to make new thin and flexible displays."

Consumer Reports Says Tesla Model S Is Best Overall Vehicle 318

Posted by Soulskill
from the opinionmaker-has-opinion dept.
cartechboy writes "When one thinks of Consumer Reports, refrigerator ratings and car seat reviews usually come to mind, but the organization actually reviews cars too. In fact, it just released a new round of top vehicle picks and it said the Tesla Model S is is the Best Overall Car you can buy. It's unusual, to say the least, for an outlet that typically names a Toyota or Lexus to choose an electric car that costs nearly $100,000 in most popular configurations from a Silicon Valley upstart. Interestingly, the Toyota Prius was named the Best Green Car. Isn't the Model S green? But I digress. A company that many thought would be bankrupt and closed by now has produced a brand-new electric car from scratch that Consumer Reports feels is the best car it's actually tested since 2007."

'Google Buses' Are Bad For Cities, Says New York MTA Official 606

Posted by timothy
from the and-a-pony dept.
An anonymous reader writes "The Director of Sustainability for New York's MTA is calling out Google, Apple, and Yahoo for 'deliberately' building their campuses away from public amenities like restaurants, and public transportation. 'With very few honorable exceptions like Tony Hsieh, the CEO of Zappos, who recently moved his company headquarters from suburban Henderson to downtown Las Vegas, tech companies seem not to have gotten the memo that suburbs are old and bad news,' he writes. Instead of launching their own bus services to ferry people from the city to their campuses, as the tech companies have done, the Googles and Apples of the world should 'locate themselves in existing urban communities. Ideally, in blighted ones,' says Dutta." Maybe cities just don't have the right mix of amenities, price, space, parking, and other factors to make them better places to put certain businesses.

Harold Ramis Dies At 69 136

Posted by samzenpus
from the print-is-dead dept.
samzenpus writes "Writer and comedian Harold Ramis has passed away at 69. Ramis had a hand in many classic comedies but is especially loved for playing the ghost-hunting Egon Spengler in Ghostbusters. 'His creativity, compassion, intelligence, humor and spirit will be missed by all who knew and loved him,' said his family in a statement."

Obama To Ask For $1 Billion Climate Change Fund 410

Posted by samzenpus
from the won't-somebody-please-think-of-the-cost? dept.
An anonymous reader writes "President Obama will ask Congress for a $1 billion 'Climate Resilience Fund' in his proposed budget next month. From the article: 'Obama is expected to release his proposed 2015 budget in early March. The prospects for the climate fund are uncertain in a Republican-controlled House. But Obama, who made preparation for climate change one of the major themes of the climate action plan he released in June, will continue to press for the need to adapt, according to the White House.'"

China's Jade Rabbit Fights To Come Back From the Dead 76

Posted by timothy
from the how-many-lives-do-rabbits-have? dept.
Despite being declared officially lost, the Chinese moon rover may yet have some life left. Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes "CNN reports that reports of Jade Rabbit's demise may have been premature as signs are emerging that China's first lunar rover may be up and running again. Following technical malfunctions Xinhua says that the lunar rover had lost communication with mission control but on Thursday the state news agency said that the rover was "fully awake" and had returned to its normal signal-receiving status. "Jade Rabbit has fully resurrected and is able to receive signals, but still suffers a mechanical control abnormality," says China's lunar program spokesman Pei Zhaoyu. "The rover entered hibernation while in an abnormal state. We were worried it wouldn't be able to make it through the extreme cold of the lunar night. But it came back alive. The rover stands a chance of being saved as it is still alive." The lunar rover's end seemed near when it signed off at the end of January with a poignant message: "Goodnight humanity." Yutu, as the device is known in Mandarin, had been out of action for two weeks following a technical malfunction, and media around the world filed its obituary late on Wednesday after a short statement on Chinese state media alerted the world to its apparent terminal failings. Should Jade Rabbit make a full recovery, it would cap another success for space exploration, which has seen NASA's Opportunity Mars rover, currently exploring the red planet, far outlast its expected lifespan."

Comment: Re:The problem is MUCH, much wider ... (Score 1) 473

by Bo'Bob'O (#46214813) Attached to: Ugly Trends Threaten Aviation Industry

"Folk" music seems to be largely forgotten by history.
There are a great number of folk and ancient music groups and organizations out there, and people interested in it overlap widely with people interested in classical. Also, many very famous composers (Dvorak, Brahms) regularly integrated folk music into their work to bring it to wider audiences, well before the days of recording and Alan Lomax.

As for who will be remembered? It's hard to say. Bach was largely forgotten for decades before multiple revivals throughout the centuries. A composer that has limited popular appeal can have a deep impact on other artists and performers that we don't see until after the hype fades. Elvis will probably be interesting to historians, but the many black artists he pulled much of his style from will likely be as much or more so.

Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration. -- Thomas Alva Edison