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Comment: Saber rattling (Score 1) 416

by DarthVain (#47946233) Attached to: Scotland Votes No To Independence

This is all so much saber rattling. Neither should, nor would separate. It is a political ploy fed to citizens in order to negotiate a better deal within respective unions or confederacy. In both cases, should the actual event ever happen they would be screwed in so many ways. Quebec gets preferential treatment to appease them. Every now and then they will threaten, but in the hopes of getting even more preferential treatment.

The last referendum Quebec had, we ran a pool on what the vote would be. That is about how worried the rest of the world is about Quebec actually leaving Canada. Eventually people will get sick of it and call their bluff and say, go ahead then, separate already. It's like the child threatening to call child services on their parents, and the eventual response being, here is the phone, would you like me to dial the number for you?

Comment: Oh Canada! (Score 1) 310

by DarthVain (#47939837) Attached to: New Study Projects World Population of 11B by 2100

Of course given global warm... or climate change or whatever, that would make much more of Canada hospitable, like North Bay or even Sudbury!

Though given that much of the non-populated near arctic is tundra on top of granite I am not sure how feasible that really is. Also much of the northern parts are only accessible by ice bridges really in winter, which would actually mean that less of the area is actually available for settlement.

Comment: 72 Virgins (Score 1) 949

by DarthVain (#47939753) Attached to: ISIS Bans Math and Social Studies For Children

On a somewhat unrelated note. I was thinking it probably helps to find people to become suicide bombers if they are uneducated and indoctrinated. I am also vaguely aware that one of the things promised to martyrs of the cause being the whole 72 virgins in the afterlife thing. Is the thinking there that there is this pool of infinite virgins that just exist in the afterlife or is it that God creates them specifically for you? Because if it is just drawing on the pool of those virgins that happen to die and go to the same place, I'm not so sure that is such a fine reward...

Comment: maintenance stresses ... (Score 1) 190

by DarthVain (#47937135) Attached to: Wave Power Fails To Live Up To Promise

There are a few operating tidal power plants in the world (three I think). One of them is in Nova Scotia. It has been there since the 70's. It works, however it is Tidal power, which is different than Wave power. The proven Tidal power uses Barrage Dams, which basically at high tide stores the water, and at low tide generates power by releasing it through turbines.

However, it was expensive to build, took longer, cost more (which isn't unheard of for any energy project, but I got the impression that it was a lot more), none of them produce all that much power either in comparison to other sources. In addition, just like Hydro power (which this essentially is but with tides), you are limited to building it in only certain areas where A) There are BIG tides, and B) In the mouth of a natural estuary etc... both of which are physically limited.

There are of course experimental underwater turbines (which is probably what that was), where you simply drop it in the water, and the tidal current does the work. However it's inherent flaw is that the entire structure is underwater. Which unless it it totally maintenance free (which if you are talking about submerged metallic machinery with moving parts in saltwater, never will be), is going to be pretty unfeasible no mater what you do for any period of time.

Comment: Winter Salt (Score 1) 190

by DarthVain (#47937027) Attached to: Wave Power Fails To Live Up To Promise

Another example that is non-metallic, all those structures will require things like concrete moorings and the like. There is a reason why you are not supposed to throw salt on your concrete steps in the winter. Now subject it non-stop and engulfed, and in addition fill it with metallic bits for re-bar...

Not to mention the construction costs where just staying level, and not moving is difficult or your workforce has to wear flippers and oxy tanks...

Comment: Sacrificial Anode (Score 1) 190

by DarthVain (#47936989) Attached to: Wave Power Fails To Live Up To Promise

All one has to do is check out a sacrificial anode that has been attached to a boat motor for a few years in salt water to get an idea of how damaging saltwater can be to things.

Parents bought a salt water speed boat (we used it in a freshwater lake). It has a sacrificial anode (I had to look up what it was actually called) attached to the shaft of the prop. In the most basic sense it attracts the corrosion from the saltwater sacrificing itself in favor of preserving those more important bits around it.

Ours was a rectangular bar that looked like someone had subjected it to acid that had eaten a large chunk of it away.

Comment: Re:Wow...... (Score 1) 949

by DarthVain (#47936893) Attached to: ISIS Bans Math and Social Studies For Children

Well to be fair, the Germans at least were pretty big on Math and Science, understanding that possession of advanced knowledge can lead to powerful technologies which you can use to your advantage. With possibly the exception of eugenics being sort or sciency, the rest was just political dogma to justify their actions.

I am sure ISIS is doing it for control purposes, keep your people dumb, afraid, and dominated. However as mentioned, long term it will likely just lead to a 3rd world despotic state... Not some new powerful caliphatatic empire they probably imagine.

Comment: Better Students (Score 1) 268

by DarthVain (#47926259) Attached to: College Students: Want To Earn More? Take a COBOL Class

A more likely correlation is that better students make better money. If you are taking COBOL as an elective you are trying hard as a student selecting courses that are hard but meaningful to your degree, rather than simply picking some easy A course to bump your average. If goes to figure that these more serious and better students with drive and motivation will also apply those same principles when trying to find work.

I took COBOL myself in the late 90's, however not as an elective but as a mandatory CS course (I think it was mandatory anyway). I have not used it one whit other than I had it on my resume for a bit before I acquired enough other experience to fill it out, and possibly to mention it offhandedly in an interview or in discussions on Slashdot.

Comment: Peer Marketing (Score 3, Insightful) 291

by DarthVain (#47917039) Attached to: The Growing Illusion of Single Player Gaming

Peer Marketing is why so many titles are multiplayer these days. At some point some marking jerk probably noticed, "Hey! When we make solo games, we have to depend on traditional marking techniques which is what we spend most of any game development. We get WAY more marketing out of making a game multiplayer, and then rather than selling one copy, we sell one copy and 5 other copies to all their friends so they can play together. Considering that most people have various circles of friends, this free marking technique is almost limitless!"

This is why. It is also why I got MW2 and MW3, Blackops, Blackops 2, etc... because once one of your friend buys it, if you want to continue to play with them, you all need to go out and upgrade. To put it in real terms, a solo game might make 80$, but a multiplayer will make say 400% that if you have 3 friends that also buy it. Then add whatever friends they have in a snowball effect. Most industries would love someway to sell 20% more of whatever let alone several thousand percent. This is also why to a limited extent why X million go out and buy it day 1, as otherwise you are left out. It also makes sure of continual growth, as any friends that didn't get it right away will have to buy it thereafter. Not to mention the pluses of multiplayer subscription services, the ability to advertise online, etc... continual downloadable content (map packs you need to buy to play with your friends, etc...)... Frankly given the economic of it all it is surprising that any company even bothers to make solo games anymore.

Comment: Nope, just submit an information request. (Score 1) 266

I think it has been shown that they lack the technical knowledge to do the kind of science fiction hacks the media all gets in a tizzy about. They have show time and time again, that they do not need any such hacks anyway, as they can simply force companies to comply with handing over information by law.

I mean why spend time developing the super widget to spy on everyone, when you can coerce any company they owns the applications, hardware, or infrastructure to do your bidding for you. Heck they will build it for you should you submit enough "information requests". Best part of the arrangement is in many cases there is a charge back to the company that can actually make money providing the information, using your own tax dollars to pay for it! Win-WIn.

Comment: Battery Length (Score 1) 222

by DarthVain (#47892129) Attached to: iPhone 6 Sales Crush Means Late-Night Waits For Some Early Adopters

It is a pretty big deal. I have a Galaxy S3 which I like. To me it really only has one downside. That big screen chows down on battery power pretty fast when you are actually using it for anything. As such the battery length isn't great. It is mitigated a bit by the fact that you can pop out a used battery and pop in a charged one and you are ready to go.

If Apply managed to not only increase screen sized AND increase battery length, that is a pretty primary feature. However you are probably still stuck with the single battery.

Comment: Storage, Capital, PR. (Score 1) 444

by DarthVain (#47892009) Attached to: If Tesla Can Run Its Gigafactory On 100% Renewables, Why Can't Others?

The problem with renewable energy is energy storage. This is a factory that will make gigantic batteries by literately the millions. They probably also get huge subsidies from the government. As with most energy projects, the up front capital costs are where the problem is. What company is going to do this when energy is cheap and available. Unless you make an electric car and it is probably worth the PR.

Never trust a computer you can't repair yourself.