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Comment: Re:lots of beads (Score 4, Interesting) 237

by Jarik C-Bol (#49755607) Attached to: California Votes To Ban Microbeads
I've read up on this a bit, and it seems that micro beads end up being ingested by a lot of aquatic life, and cause health problems. Along with that, the heaver ones sink and carpet areas of aquatic floor, and smother out aquatic plant life. the rest probably end up in the giant Atlantic/Pacific garbage patches, which we don't need to make bigger.

Comment: Re:Markets, not people (Score 5, Insightful) 615

by Jarik C-Bol (#49706751) Attached to: The Economic Consequences of Self-Driving Trucks
Honestly, we can kick that can a lot farther down the road than you may suspect. When self driving trucks first become a reality, they are going to be used as 'autopilot' where they do the over-the-highway driving, and human drivers do the 'last mile' because the last mile can be a tricky bastard for a human, let alone a computer. Many deliveries take place where the truck must jack knife the truck in the middle of a street, back into an ally and around a corner in reverse, and center up on a loading dock, or some variant thereof. As the initial action (blocking all lanes of traffic) requires something that by most standards would be a traffic violation, it becomes extremely hard to program a computer to make the final approach to the dock, while still following all its 'road safety' rules. It could be decades before we get our software/AI advanced enough for that, and until then, self driving trucks are going to require skilled drivers in the seat, waiting their turn.

Comment: Re:Here's my list (Score 2) 278

by Jarik C-Bol (#49703261) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What's On Your Keychain?
I've heard this spouted off lots of times over the years, and have just this to say to everyone who makes this claim:

Go get a condom, open it, unroll it, and try and put a liter of water into it from a puddle or small stream, and get back to me. Small hint, its going to be like trying to fill a water balloon from a puddle or small stream, commonly known as a giant waste of time. Your only recourse would be to suck water up via mouth, and deposit into condom, which means you have a handy gallon of backwash.

Bring a real water vessel if you believe you may find yourself in a survival situation. Hell, even a 1 gallon ziplock bag would be preferable.

Comment: Re:May finally get servers updated... (Score 1) 118

by Jarik C-Bol (#49496113) Attached to: Exploit For Crashing Minecraft Servers Made Public
I agree, hell, its pretty possible for anyone to crash any Minecraft server through dedicated and obsessive gameplay. Either set off far to much TNT, or simply build a hilariously large auto wheat farm, and you can grind the game to a halt, with probable crashing. And thats without any malformed packets, just in game mechanics.

Comment: Re:Waste is heat! (Score 1) 198

Its considered inefficient for a collection of reasons. Lets say, your using an electric stove. This means you are using some sort of resistor to get hot from electricity, which was transmitted to you at X% loss over the power lines, after being generated at (probably) a Coal fired power plant, which means the coal was burned to make steam, where Y% of the stored energy in coal was lost up the smokestack or as cooling of the steam, which spun a turbine at some Z% loss because of friction and so forth, meaning that, from the originating fuel source, (coal in this example) you have a loss of X+Y+Z before the power even starts to warm up your pot of water.
Or, they are merely comparing costs. Lets compare heating your house with an all electric furnace system, vs a natural gas furnace. In many areas, if you set your thermostat to 70F all winter, and have an electric furnace, you spend say, 1000$ a month powering the furnace. Your neighbor, who has the same tract house as you, but replaced his furnace with a gas model, sets his thermostat to 70F as well, and spends 600$ a month on gas for his furnace. Clearly, his system is more efficient, as he spent less money on the same amount of heat.

Comment: Re: What Would be a Trivial Amount? (Score 2) 198

You're in luck, as I recently spent a great deal of time searching for tankless gas water heaters that fit a very particular set of requirements, and they happen to match a great deal of your requirements. I learned that there exist three types of tankless gas water heaters, in terms of ignition.
There is the most common, the electrically ignited, which you are familiar with.
Then, there are, if you hunt, standing pilot light models, which work much like the cheep end gas water heaters, with a constantly lit pilot light. (I've read that these take about 20$ worth of gas a year, if that is a concern at all)
And finally, there is what is known as a Hydro Ignition models, where the flow of water through the heater spins a flutter-mill of some sort, which somehow sparks and lights the burner. I've read that these models take some getting used to, as you must let the water flow for a while to get them to light, and then heat. Bosch makes a whole line of tankless heaters, using either Natural Gas or LP. I've taken the liberty of finding a Natural Gas Standing Pilot light model in the list for you:

As you'll see, they are currently offering it for 645$, which is a good deal less than the 1000$ you mentioned. If that is not to your liking, (as I can't speak to your gas line and vent, as you didn't mention dimensions) here is the search listing for all the models that do not require electrical hookup:

Comment: Re:Unrelated issues (Score 1) 886

by Jarik C-Bol (#49340211) Attached to: Gen Con Threatens To Leave Indianapolis Over Religious Freedom Bill
The cake thing is because of an incident that occurred with a Colorado baker. The state laws dictates that either they make the cake, or face civil penalties of multiple thousands of dollars per day until the cake is delivered. The case has been at the front of evangelical news, being marked as a 'harbinger of doom' because the individual is "being forced by the state to violate their personal beliefs or go out of business".
Now, the details of the case are a bit sordid in its own right, as the situation seems to have been deliberately concocted by what many would deem 'militant gays' (as moronic as that term may be)
The baker in Colorado ran a business that prominently advertised as a Christian bakery, and was contacted by a gay couple from out of state (I want to say Pennsylvania?) requesting a wedding cake be made. When the baker refused, he ran afoul of the states relatively new anti-discrimination laws.

Now, there is probably more to this than anyone is letting on, but on the surface, it looks a lot like someone went to lengths to ensure they would be discriminated against. Why the hell would you order a cake for a gay wedding from a blatantly christian baker multiple states away, wanting it to be shipped hundreds of miles, risking damage and spoilage, when you can get a perfectly awesome cake locally? It does not take many leaps of logic to assume that someone was trying to 'Rosa Parks' the situation. The problem being, Rosa Parks was standing up (or sitting down) in protest of unjust laws, where these individuals are merely baiting a single individual into destroying what was up till then, a perfectly successful business.
Now, many will argue that he should just make the damn cake, and its none of his business what the hell anyone does with it. (and for the most part, I agree.) At the same time however, I feel disquieted by the entire situation, and am left feeling like there is a fundamental flaw in the arrangement of this law, which allows for the ruining of an individuals entire livelihood, based entirely on the complaint of a single customer, pushing against an engrained belief.

It is not far fetched to assume that some people, raised to believe certain things, will maintain some semblance of adherence to that belief for the duration of their life. This 'Ingrained behavior' generally is harder to change the older an individual gets. Just like dear old grannie who still uses the 'N' word, and everyone just sort of laughs nervously and pretends it did not happen, We are finding ourselves in an extremely uncomfortable transitional period, where a younger generation is far more accepting of the gay lifestyle than previous generations, and legislation is moving so quickly, we find ourselves punishing people who, for lack of a better term 'don't know any better'. It does not make it right, but I feel that the burden of law we have crafted is perhaps to harsh. Change takes time, and we seem to be demanding it happen faster than large swatches of society are capable of.

The degree of technical confidence is inversely proportional to the level of management.