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Comment: My guess:Series Hybrid + recharge tech licensing (Score 4, Interesting) 51

by Isca (#47865135) Attached to: Toyota and Tesla May Work Together Again
The current Priuses and other Toyota offerings are parallel hybrids. That is, they have transmissions that directly drive the wheels using the ICE (Internal Combustion Engine).

In a series hybrid, each wheel has it's own motor, and the ICE engine runs at a steady speed that is very efficient to generate electricity that is then used to recharge the batteries that are fed to the electric motors.

A second part of my guess is that Toyota is licensing the recharging technology from Tesla, so that they can use the supercharger network as well. This way they can have a vehicle that can run 100% off of electricity only, but have a ICE engine that is available at any time to back that up (faster refueling, can go anywhere there is a gas station, etc.)

Comment: Re:where are we headed 5, 10, 15 yrs from now? (Score 1) 143

by Isca (#47719897) Attached to: How Argonne National Lab Will Make Electric Cars Cheaper
Don't forget that all of the old batteries that are returned to Tesla will probably go into large warehouses in rural areas where they can take those batteries that are only 70% of their effectiveness and use them for another 20 years as grid storage. I honestly think this is Elon's long term goal. Using them in transportation pays for the initial cost of the batteries - long term grid storage is what will make the money. Once the first few large scale grid storage "warehouses" come on line the financiers will join in to make purchasing your electric vehicle batteries a lease with the goal of making money over the long term, making it even cheaper for the EV owner to purchase them.

Comment: Re:How foes this compare (Score 1) 146

by Isca (#47387855) Attached to: NASA Approves Production of Most Powerful Rocket Ever
The boosters are not bad on their own. They have been fairly reliable and reasonably cheap (not as cheap as SpaceX's approach could be however). The bad part of the boosters/shuttle setup was simply the fact that the vehicle occupants were located next to parts that could go boom instead of on top of and away from most potential blast paths.

Comment: Re:More likely to big to be backed up (Score 1) 245

by Isca (#47204805) Attached to: NSA's Novel Claim: Our Systems Are Too Complex To Obey the Law
While I'm sure there is plenty of NSA Skullduggery to go around, in this case the parent is probably right on the money. I'm sure someone had an aha moment with this one - they most likely can't even begin to store all of this data - yet. Probably only a small fraction of it.

Comment: This sounds like a proof of flaw 'hack'. (Score 4, Insightful) 50

by Isca (#47101443) Attached to: Spotify Announces Single User Hacked, No Personal Data Stolen
1 account only was hacked? This sounds like someone who was trying to prove that a flaw exists in their security. I'm guessing there is more to this story to come - this sounds like they are setting things up to go after this 'hacker'' that caused the security breach. If it was someone trying to do something malicious there would be more accounts pulled. Even if it was someone who was just curious to see if they could do it wouldn't have just stopped at one but someone who is trying to playing the role of a white hat would potentially only do this on one single account. I'll be really disappointed if that's what it turns out to be and Spotify decides to prosecute.

Comment: It can still work (Score 1) 22

by Isca (#46876805) Attached to: Aerospace Merger: ATK Joins With Orbital Sciences Corp
Solid rockets ala the shuttle still have their place -- with heavy lifting of cargo into space. They are relatively cheap and can be reused. However if SpaceX is able to succeed in returning their rockets to the pad and is able to scale that ability up to it's heavy lifting proposals nothing this orbital-ATK company has proposed will come close to SpaceX's price.

"If it ain't broke, don't fix it." - Bert Lantz