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Comment: Re:Correction: (Score 1) 296

Cable tv/internet franchises almost always come with a build out requirement

That are then ignored without consequence.

For example a decade ago some company wanted to put fiber (I think it was Verizon) in the new developments across the street from my mom's house where there expensive $750,000+ houses were going in. It was stipulated that they also had to roll out fiber to the rest of the city if they wanted to install in the new developments. 10 years on there still isn't fiber outside of the new developments, and there aren't any plans to install it either.

Comment: Re:This is the future Republicans want for all of (Score 1) 155

by Bob the Super Hamste (#47713875) Attached to: Google Receives Takedown Request Every 8 Milliseconds
I beg to disagree. Under the 2 party system things change, just not for the better. One party can erode one set of rights and then in a few years they lose power and the other party gets to erode some other rights. They both then get to campaign on the rights that the other side took away, yet never manage to get around to reinstating them when they are in power.

Comment: Re:McDonallds should sue ... (Score 1) 246

by Bob the Super Hamste (#47712089) Attached to: Comcast Training Materials Leaked
This may have some to do with the topology in you area. I live in a low area in my neighborhood and while the main 2 antennas, they are on the north side of the cities about 1/4 mile apart, are close, there isn't a clear line of sight to them from my house, even with a 16' mast and large antenna point correctly. I gave up on TV with the switch to digital and I find that I really haven't missed much.

Comment: Re:High tech farming (Score 1) 133

by Bob the Super Hamste (#47711715) Attached to: FarmBot: an Open Source Automated Farming Machine
I just keep hearing about how California needs all of this migrant farm labor to bring in the harvest from the news so I figured that migrant labor (probably illegal) was still widely used instead of mechanization.

Living in an upper Midwestern state California, comparatively, is a slacker when it comes to food production and with good preservation techniques having good food is easy year round even when it isn't in season. Case in point I have found that by being a cheap guy I have also become mostly a localivore (still hate that stupid term) since it is cheaper to go and buy in bulk from the farmer, and then can, dry, prepare and freeze, pickle, or otherwise preserve the food than to buy as needed at the grocery store. Basically I do the following:
get a few 50 lbs sack of potatoes for $5 each and just keep them in the cool dark basement
Can up 10s of gallons of stews, chiles, sauces, and soups made from meat from farmers I know and stuff out of my garden
make jams, fruit sauces, dried fruit, and preservers from trees on my own property or from local orchards
Make a bunch of meals and just freeze them (lots of home made pasta dishes)
Freeze a bunch of raw food
Buy large sacks of dried beans
If you dedicate a few weekends in the late summer and fall to cooking it is amazing how much food you can make and preserve and then not have to worry about cooking for most of the year.

Solar Plant Sets Birds On Fire As They Fly Overhead 495

Posted by Soulskill
from the free-hot-wings dept.
Elledan writes: Federal investigators in California have requested that BrightSource — owner of thermal solar plants — halt the construction of more (and bigger) plants until their impact on wildlife has been further investigated. "Unlike many other solar plants, the Ivanpah plant does not generate energy using photovoltaic solar panels. Instead, it has more than 300,000 mirrors, each the size of a garage door. Together, they cover 1,416 hectares. Each mirror collects and reflects solar rays, focusing and concentrating solar energy from their entire surfaces upward onto three boiler towers, each looming up to 40 stories high. The solar energy heats the water inside the towers to produce steam, which turns turbines that generate enough electricity for 140,000 homes." The concentrated solar energy chars and incinerates the feathers of passing birds. BrightSource estimates about a thousand bird die this way every year, but an environmental group claims the real number is much higher.

Comment: Re:High tech farming (Score 1) 133

by Bob the Super Hamste (#47705729) Attached to: FarmBot: an Open Source Automated Farming Machine
Just because in the southwest US (looking at you California that should be a desert) they still use lots of manual labor doesn't mean that that there aren't machine that can harvest these crops. There are machines that shake fruit trees and catches it, picks grapes off the vines, harvest tomatoes (the machine takes in the whole plant), and I wouldn't be surprised if picking things like broccoli, cabbage, and lettuce couldn't be done in a similar fashion, especially given what I have seen in the grocery store over the last few years.

Comment: Re:"they shouldn't email you?" (Score 4, Interesting) 231

Employees often feel that they can't say "no" to the expectation that they have to be available via email even while at home off work hours.

People just need to make it clearer that you will be unreachable. My managers stopped when they insisted that they needed a way to get a hold of me in case of emergency since I would be well out of cellphone range. My response was a trained tracker and a team of search dogs. I told him about where I was going to be leaving my car and said to start searching there as I would be somewhere up in the north woods of Minnesota.

Comment: Re:What kind of fish? (Score 3, Interesting) 180

by Bob the Super Hamste (#47694659) Attached to: Fighting Invasive Fish With Forks and Knives
I like my method of turning carp into something delicious better:
1. Catch the carp
2. load up ~100lbs of carp in the back of the jeep in a big plastic tub
3. dig a big hold in the garden
4. bury carp in the garden
They make a wonderful fertilizer. I also do the same thing with the little crappy bullheads from the pond that is full of sheep field run off near my house.

Comment: Re:Money pit (Score 1) 322

That it has. The current gen are impressive machines, as are the old ones, and kids love seeing them. It is like a Tonka truck dream come true, or as my 3 year old put it shaking with excitement "They have a super dump truck and a super super dump truck!" when he first saw the 100 ton and 240 ton truck up in Virginia, MN.

Comment: Re:Money pit (Score 1) 322

I was just countering that somewhat implied point that they weren't using massive machine. At the time they were using the largest available but those don't hold a candle to the current monsters that are used in mining the largest ever removed ~220 cubic yards of material at a time. Or for an actual shovel instead of a dragline there are these electric monsters which I have seen similar ones in action.

The IBM purchase of ROLM gives new meaning to the term "twisted pair". -- Howard Anderson, "Yankee Group"