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Comment: Re:We aready have this (Score 1) 28

by JanneM (#49377095) Attached to: Hand-Drawn and Inkjet Printed Circuits for the Masses (Video)

I solder SMT components by hand as well. Don't even need a microscope; just head-mounted magnifier glasses is plenty. Make sure you have good light and plenty of flux and you're good to go.

But the problem is the board. Sure, if you have a finished design already, and you intend to actually use it in the future, then sending off for a finished PCB is good. But if it's just a hobby, and you're prototyping or just playing around to better understand a particular circuit, then spending a good chunk of money and weeks of time for a board is simply not feasible. You really want to set something up, try it, then tear it down and try the next idea.

With that said, I don't know that this is the answer either. Hand-drawn does not sound precise enough to handle SMT, and a whole separate device just making prototype boards sounds like too much money and space for a hobbyist. Perhaps the answer is desktop mills that become cheap and precise enough that you can use them to cut out boards from copper blanks along with other building tasks. At least that would not be a single-purpose gadget.

Comment: Re:Not a watch (Score 1) 111

A watch is a mechanical timepiece you wear on your wrist.

No. A watch is a piece of jewellery you wear on your wrist. The only difference between a wristwatch on one hand and a pendant, a bracelet or a brooch on the other is that a watch is the only widely allowed jewellery (other than a wedding ring) for men. Of course, the intricate mechanics and technical craftmanship is an added appeal, though the actual function of telling time is just a bonus, not the main point.

And that explains why there are such a large number of watchmakers, and such a huge number of models; with jewellery, the last thing you want is to wear the same thing as everybody else.

Comment: Re:AKA as Database Syndrome (Score 4, Insightful) 112

by JanneM (#49263469) Attached to: Scientific Study Finds There Are Too Many Scientific Studies

For citations central to your argument, sure, you need to track down the main papers. It's not that difficult - just look at what papers everybody else is citing. But most citations are just fulfilling the [citation needed] reqs for facts you use in your work. Any one of dozens, sometimes hundreds, of papers would easily fill in for that role.

You find two references about the same thing. As far as citing the fact you need they're essentially equivalent. One will take three weeks and thirty dollars - and half a day of arguing to make the lab pay those thirty dollars - to get, and half the time your thirty bucks will give you a badly printed paper copy. The other you can download into your paper manager and read right now. Guess which one almost everybody will use?

Comment: Re:Number of legal positions (Score 5, Funny) 186

by JanneM (#49211995) Attached to: Number of Legal 18x18 Go Positions Computed; 19x19 On the Horizon

Here is the number of legal positions:
6697231142888292128927 401888417065435099377 8064017873281031833769694562442854721810521 43260127743713971848488909701 11836283470468812827907149926502 347633

Why they chose to present it like that, instead of scientific notation, I'll never know but there it is.

I'm not quite clear how 6.697231142888292128 927401888417065435 099377806401787328 103183376969456244 285472181052143260 127743713971848488 909701118362834704 688128279071499265 02347633e151 is much of an improvement, to be honest.

Comment: Re:Breakthrough? (Score 4, Insightful) 445

by JanneM (#49184159) Attached to: Microsoft Convinced That Windows 10 Will Be Its Smartphone Breakthrough

Smart article yes, but it's still incredibly stupid to buy a lottery ticket.

Unless you think it's fun to play. Idle daydreaming about what you'd do if you won; the excitement as the numbers are called; the rollercoaster of emotion as you realize you may win - no you won't - oh but you did get a small price.

It's only stupid if you see it as an investment. See it as entertainment and it's no more dumb than paying to watch a movie.

Comment: Re: Cost savings (Score 1) 106

by JanneM (#49144065) Attached to: Argonne National Laboratory Shuts Down Online Ask a Scientist Program

It is ridiculous of course. It is also a common attitude among PI's toward their postdocs and students, especially in high-profile, high-pressure labs.

This letter from a PI to a worker made the rounds a few years ago. The PI claimed later it was a joke. It doesn't read like a joke, and the exact same attidude is not uncommon at all:

When you don't know what to do, walk fast and look worried.