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Comment Re:Oh good grief (Score 1) 37

Nanotech has become a buzzword that can refer to excellent research or crackpottery depending on what's desired by the speaker. I hope you're restricting your rant to the crackpottery. but tossing baby with bathwater is practically an Olympic sport around Slashdot.

On the other hand, we've long used a lot of chemistry of all sorts that we really don't understand.

Just because we're not likely to get full up assemblers in the short term hardly means that nothing good will come of what's broadly termed nanotech.

Submission + - The Earth's missing element is found in stars

StartsWithABang writes: Beyond hydrogen and helium, every atom of every element we have on Earth was made in a star, processed in space and then finally condensed to form our world some 4.5 billion years ago. All the elements of the periodic table up through Uranium are found on our world, except one: technetium, element 43. But technetium is found in (some) stars, thanks to an amazing reaction: the s-process.

Comment Sugar Daddies? (Score 3, Insightful) 552

Hey, any of you Slashdot geeks won the lottery lately and have lotsa money you don't know what to do with?

Just think, you could be the new hero riding in on your shining horse to save us all! (Until we all become disillusioned with you, and we'll flame you like we have everyone else. :) )

Comment Meth Hype is Common: (Score 4, Insightful) 98

Take things with a grain of salt. Many of these "high tech meth lab" cases are someone using a couple of soda bottles and plastic straws to make meth with ingredients they bought at Walmart.

It may have been a random building worker doing this. If it were one of the scientists, I'd be surprised they'd be using drain cleaner as the sodium hydroxide rather than just getting some out of the lab. It's one of the most common lab chemicals.

Comment Re:Tired of anti-nuclear editors on Slashdot! (Score 1) 242

I suspect this isn't about anti-nuke so much, as their Dice bosses pushing it because the posts using Counterpunch and The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists get lots of replies.

Just wait till the Dice PHBs figure out that posting articles from Worldnet Daily get even more outraged replies.

Comment So *many* mistakes in your post: (Score 1) 242

So many more mistakes:

Tritium is indeed radioactive with a half life of about 12.5 years (That's why it's great for making glow in the dark dials that require no light recharging or electricity. Only a tiny amount is needed, but a 12.5 year half life is pretty darn "hot" in the vernacular, and if you have a lot of it, you get a lot of energy release. It emits beta rays (high energy electrons) which aren't as much of a problem as gamma, but do cause surface burning, etc.).

U238 is indeed radioactive. It's an alpha particle emitter with a half life of 4.5 billion years. (Agreed, it's not highly radioactive, but it certainly is radioactive. U235 is more highly radioactive.)

I'm hardly an alarmist about nuclear technology and am a strong supporter of nuclear power, but blatant mistakes in your post don't help the argument in favor of it.

The confusion of a staff member is measured by the length of his memos. -- New York Times, Jan. 20, 1981

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