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Comment: Halogen lightbulb by another name (Score 1) 569

by Cluster2k1 (#28605945) Attached to: Incandescent Bulbs Return To the Cutting Edge
This was cutting edge technology... in the 1950s. The 'new' technology being presented here is just a high voltage halogen light bulb packaged in the traditional bayonet or Edison screw format. I am amazed that anyone is calling this 'cutting edge'.

Philips sells Polish made halogen light bulbs here in Australia for around $3 each (US$2.40) while Osrams are slightly cheaper. These consume 30% less power (70w instead of 100w) with double the lifetime of a traditional light bulb.

I love CFLs as nothing in a reasonable price range is as efficient. The payback period is only a few months. However, CFLs take a little while to heat up (up to 30 seconds) and don't react well to frequent power cycling. Therefore I use 240v halogens in bayonet format in some circumstances.

Comment: Important findings (Score 2, Interesting) 334

by Cluster2k1 (#28558475) Attached to: Secrets of Schizophrenia and Depression "Unlocked"
Anything that sheds new light onto Schizophrenia and related disorders is very welcome. It's heart breaking to watch someone close to you go through Schizophrenia symptoms. It's not the funny Hollywood version of split personalities. People suffering the disorder believe they are incredibly important (on a world scale), that they're on a special mission, they're related to Jesus, that others are coming to commit harm. Most of all, they can't tell you who sent them on the 'mission' or why. They sometimes turn on friends and accuse them of literally giving the disease. The paranoia accompanying the illness can reach critical levels. Saddest of all, a person with Schizophrenia does not believe they have a problem. They believe everyone else is either wrong, out to get them, or 'just doesn't understand.' Getting a sufferer to realise anything is wrong, let alone getting them to accept medical treatment is a real trial.
GNU is Not Unix

RMS Says "Software As a Service" Is Non-free 715

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the ok-thats-a-bit-inflammatory dept.
BillyG noted an RMS interview where he says "'Software as a service' means that you think of a particular server as doing your computing for you. If that's what the server does, you must not use it! If you do your computing on someone else's server, you hand over control of your computing to whoever controls the server. It is like running binary-only software, only worse: it's even harder for you to patch the program that's running on someone else's server than it is to patch a binary copy of a program running on your own computer. Just like non-free software, 'software as a service' is incompatible with your freedom."
Math

Quantum Theory May Explain Wishful Thinking 415

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the over-your-head dept.
explosivejared writes "Humans don't always make the most rational decisions. As studies have shown, even when logic and reasoning point in one direction, sometimes we chose the opposite route, motivated by personal bias or simply 'wishful thinking.' This paradoxical human behavior has resisted explanation by classical decision theory for over a decade. But now, scientists have shown that a quantum probability model can provide a simple explanation for human decision-making — and may eventually help explain the success of human cognition overall."
Data Storage

How Does Flash Media Fail? 357

Posted by kdawson
from the in-the-pan dept.
bhodge writes "Aside from the obvious 'it stops working' answer, how does flash media — such as USB, SD, and CF — fail? Unlike with traditional hard drive, where anyone who's worked with computers for a while knows what a drive failure looks like, I don't know anyone who has experienced such a failure with flash. I've haven't been able to find more than scant evidence of what such failures look like at the OS level. The one account I have found detailed using a small USB drive for /var/log storage; it failed very quickly, and then utterly (0 byte unformatted device), after five years of service in the role. This runs contrary to other anecdotal claims that you should still be able to read the media after you can no longer write to it. So my question is: what have you seen of the nature of flash media failure, if anything?"
Programming

Twitter On Scala 324

Posted by kdawson
from the going-off-the-rails dept.
machaut writes "Twitter, one of the highest profile Ruby on Rails-backed websites on the Internet, has in the past year started replacing some of their Ruby infrastructure with an emerging language called Scala, developed by Martin Odersky at Switzerland's École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne. Although they still prefer Ruby on Rails for user-facing web applications, Twitter's developers have started replacing Ruby daemon servers with Scala alternatives, and plan eventually to serve API requests, which comprise the majority of their traffic, with Scala instead of Ruby. This week several articles have appeared that discuss this shift at Twitter. A technical interview with three Twitter developers was published on Artima. One of those developers, Alex Payne, Twitter's API lead, gave a talk on this subject at the Web 2.0 Expo this week, which was covered by Technology Review and The Register."
Space

Satellite Collision Debris May Hamper Space Launch 131

Posted by timothy
from the install-cowcatchers dept.
Matt_dk writes "The debris from a recent collision involving two communications satellites could pose a serious threat for future launches of spacecraft into a geostationary orbit, a Russian scientist said on Friday. Future launches will have to be adjusted with regard to the fact that the debris [from the collision] has spread over an 800-km area and will gather at a common orbit in 5-6 years."
Earth

Power In Scotland From Tides and Whiskey 170

Posted by timothy
from the plus-the-spinning-corpse-of-william-wallace dept.
tsamsoniw writes "Singapore-based Atlantis Resources Corporation, which brings to the table tidal-turbine technology, is partnering with Scotland-based datacenter developer Internet Villages International) to construct a tidal-powered 150MW 'Blue Datacenter,' InfoWorld reports. If all goes to plan, the facility will eventually be powered entirely by clean energy produced by tidal-current turbines in the Pentland Firth, the stretch of water between the far north Scottish mainland and Orkney. The firth's currents could generate 700 megawatts of electricity by 2020." And reader Mike writes "Here's something to raise a glass to: recently the Rothes consortium of whiskey and scotch distillers announced that they have partnered with Helius Energy to install a power plant fueled entirely by whiskey by-products. The completed plant will use biomass cogeneration to convert draff and pot ale from the distillery into 7.2 MW of electricity — enough to power 9,000 homes."
The Internet

How Web Advertising May Go 229

Posted by kdawson
from the hoping-it's-the-worst-case-scenario dept.
Anti-Globalism sends us to Ars Technica for Jon Stokes's musing on the falling value of Web advertising. Stokes put forward the outlying possibility — not a prediction — that ad rates could fall by 40% before turning up again, if they ever do. "A web page, in contrast, is typically festooned with hyperlinked visual objects that fall all over themselves in competing to take you elsewhere immediately once you're done consuming whatever it is that you came to that page for. So the page itself is just one very small slice of an unbounded media experience in which a nearly infinite number of media objects are scrambling for a vanishingly small sliver of your attention. ... We've had a few hundred years to learn to monetize print, over 75 years to monetize TV, and, most importantly, millennia to build business models based on scarcity. In contrast, our collective effort to monetize post-scarcity digital media have only just begun."
The Almighty Buck

Landing IT Work Overseas 194

Posted by timothy
from the mostly-aimed-at-americans dept.
snydeq writes "US IT workers could find considerable payoff and invaluable experience by taking their IT skills overseas, InfoWorld reports, as foreign, US, and global firms have increased the demand for a wide range of tech talent across the globe, offering positions that clearly move beyond the scut work of heads-down programming. Business fluency, industry-specific skills, and knowledge of American markets is fast becoming an invaluable asset foreign firms will pay a premium for, according to the report, which offers insights into finding IT work in a range of cities and regions abroad."

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