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Comment fischer tropsch process (Score 2) 82

The process to convert CO2 into long-chain hydrocarbons has been in use since the 1930s. It's not inefficient because it requires high heat. On the contrary, it produces excess heat, and must be actively cooled with water flowing through an internal heat-exchanger. The inefficiency lies in the need to create-and supply hydrogen, which requires some process such as electrolysis of water. Oh, and it does require high pressure, which costs energy. Oh and it does take energy to raise the concentration of CO2 to sufficient levels from the atmosphere while filtering out the nitrogen and oxygen. So it mostly makes more sense to start with a product like wood-gas, coal-gas or natural-gas, and then turn that into diesel. Not as interesting as pulling it from the air, but it does give you a carbon-neutral source of portable fuel, when you use plant material. It also ends up being similar to that whole "anything into oil" idea that Scientific American used to be crazy about, but turned out not to be price-competetive, and the smell of rotting turkey guys upset the neighbors.

Comment Re:Only 14 votes for CowboyNeal option? (Score 1) 85

One of the 5-point responses to the new ownership's question of "what can we do to improve slashdot" was that they should return the Cowboy Neal option. I didn't think he still worked for Slashdot. If he doesn't, I personally think it's a touch weird. If he is still around, then it's pretty nice to see that the new boss is indeed trying to listen to us!

Comment Cores or 'cores'? (Score 1) 121

AMD's dual-core, partially shared, but partially independent has been a confusing thing. Better than hypethreading, but worse than real cores, claiming performance of real cores.

Note for all those desktop enthusiasts out there, don't get too excited. To look at Intel as an example, they go up to 4 cores per desktop socket, but go to 18 cores per socket in servers (at 150W per socket) as of this moment (can't talk about unreleased product). AMD does 8 'core' desktop processors (4 modules) and 16 'core' opteron (really 8 modules), so it's not just an Intel thing.

Comment Re:That may be. (Score 4, Insightful) 463

That is true, but also used to describe some pretty ridiculous people. People who genuinely consider themselves in the same league as people who put themselves in the way of bodily harm to advance the civil rights movement back in the day. Except they are just posting stuff on the internet and sometimes fighting against purely imagined circumstances, and sometimes launching into campaigns of harassment against the stray random person who makes even a slightly insensitive twitter message, saying they deserve to be fired and blackballed in the industry, and all sorts of things.

It's the campaigns of harassment that I find particularly unsettling, as they don't take any effort in understanding the perspective of the person who offended. For example a young man I knew in high school would say some pretty intolerant things about gay people. Ultimately it was an expression of his difficulty coming to grips with being gay himself, and fortunately he found the right friends and support to get him through it. I shudder to think if he had to go through that today in a more public forum and earn the wrath of some of these people, going after him relentlessly and trying everything they can figure out to further ruin his life moreso than how screwed up he was by his predicament.

Some of these people are more bully than 'educated caring intelligent people', doing what they can to feel better about themselves first and foremost, thinking they are doing 'good'.

Comment Re: All I know is that this: (Score 2) 265

I just think that people are failing to recognize that github effectively benefits from encouraging traditional centralized version control workflows but using git. They don't emphasize teaching people on how to do offline merges and peer to peer, they encourage every change to be pushed and then a pull request with a handy-dandy 'click to merge' button.

So github shouldn't get a pass for what is possible with git (they didn't make git after all). They just leverage the popularity of git to build what is for most users a traditional repository. They should be criticized for failings around uptime. Particularly as they also serve as the place people host the builds for users to download.

I think github provides value (particularly for the networking effect for collaboration) and thus I think being worryingly worse with respect to uptime is a problem.

Comment Re: Does this schedule leave time for listening? (Score 1) 229

Windows 10 is a pretty good sign they were paying *some* attention to the Windows 8 reaction.

To be fair, until they released, they couldn't gauge the reaction from the market they *wanted* in Windows 8, mobile/tablet users. Yes the desktop users may have made it quite clear how screwed up it was, but MS doesn't really need to care about them, they are a captive audience. They wanted to capture the market they couldn't get before.

Comment Re: What about instead waiting until it's ready? (Score 1) 229

That has been a long standing problem with many companies, that they strive to make software developers interchangeable cogs through process. Apply enough process and you'll get great products whether you use experienced and enthusiastic people or bottom of the barrel people who can't make more money another way.

Comment Re: What about instead waiting until it's ready? (Score 1) 229

That's what I've always hated about people's approach to status meetings (scrum and before scrum). People take up my time talking at length about what *they* successfully did at a detail level I do not need. Tell me things that are done, and don't give me details of how arduous it was to get there. Tell me if you are having a problem and would like to have some help.

I've always viewed things like I've done a good job if there's not much to say about the work done.

Comment My rule of thumb... (Score 1) 229

If a group embraces the terminology of the most popular 'process', it's probably bad. In other words, most teams are bad and use whatever is most popularized as a stand in, and tend to act however they want, but pay lipservice to the popular process to make themselves look like they are following industry best practices.

I'll add to the 'unless you have a giant team' that if you have a giant team, you've *probably* done something wrong. Most software development teams I've seen with over a hundred full time developers really would be better to have maybe a dozen or so good people. It's the mistake of conflating importance with needed manpower. Then in an effort to utilize said manpower for what should be a smaller project, very silly things happen in the architecture.

All that said, I think the suggested strategy on making the date rather than getting all the features isn't bad, so long as quality doesn't take a hit. In other words, wait until it's ready with respect to bugs, but don't let a missing feature hold you up.

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