Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

Comment: Re:Solar rarely enough for the whole house (Score 2) 250

by mi (#49551205) Attached to: Tesla To Announce Battery-Based Energy Storage For Homes

Li-ion is just too expensive and maintenance-intensive to use grid scale.

"Grid scale" simply can not be more expensive than single-house scale.

It is called "Economy of scale" and although some of such may have limits, beyond which cost of additional units begins to increase, none of the conditions for that would apply in this case.

Comment: Re:Done in movies... (Score 1) 206

by mi (#49551171) Attached to: Allegation: Philly Cops Leaned Suspect Over Balcony To Obtain Password

we know who the bad guys are

Well, we know, the victim really was a drug-dealer too now.

because we know who the bad guys are

We — the readers and viewers — know (sort of). The policeman doing the illegal deed in fiction knows just as much as the real cops in TFA knew.

There should be no difference in our condemnation (or lack of it) of their actions. And yet, the difference is vast, proving most of the society as either hypocrites or tools of the manipulators ready to whip-up public outrage for their own purposes.

Comment: Re:Solar rarely enough for the whole house (Score 2) 250

by mi (#49551079) Attached to: Tesla To Announce Battery-Based Energy Storage For Homes

Your plan would cost more than what the utilities are already doing. Doing it your way would mean they would have to charge more at night and during the day.

Whoever is doing it, if it makes sense for anybody to store power generated at off-peak times for usage at peak times, it makes more sense for the generating companies to do it: because they can afford bigger storage with dedicated personnel and manage the generation-storage combination finer.

But, of course, this begs the question of whether it makes sense to do it for anyone at all — though TFA seems to suggest, it does...

Comment: Solar rarely enough for the whole house (Score 1) 250

by mi (#49550583) Attached to: Tesla To Announce Battery-Based Energy Storage For Homes

Few people have the space for so many panels to run their house on them — even if the problem of storing it were solved. From MIT:

Imagine that your house uses 48 kWh of electricity per day (about average). If you live in Arizona, where the average solar insolation per year is around 6 kWh/meters squared/day, you’ll need 53 square meters (574 sq ft) of 15% efficient solar panels. If you spend the extra money for 21% efficient solar panels, then you’ll only need 38 square meters (409 sq ft) of solar panels. But if you try to power the same sized house in Vermont, where the average solar insolation per year is around 4 kWh/meters squared/day, you’ll need 80 square meters (861 sq ft) of 15% efficient solar panels and 57 square meters (615 sq ft) of the 21% efficient ones.

And 48kWh, which is cited above as "about average", means, no home-servers running 24x7 (about 200Watts*24h=4.8kWh — or 10% more than the estimate — per server), no super-duper Christmas lights, and other limitations...

No, electricity companies are better positioned to produce electricity. And, truth be told, they should be using these wonder-batteries to store electricity during the night so they wouldn't have to charge more during the day. If only we had them properly competing with each other...

Comment: Re:Done in movies... (Score 1) 206

by mi (#49550515) Attached to: Allegation: Philly Cops Leaned Suspect Over Balcony To Obtain Password

He did not say "more often".

In the below context, the qualifier "more" is implied and does not need to be explicitly mentioned to convey the implication:

The problem is that in real life, often the people who think they are right and good actually aren't,

Because people make all sorts of mistakes "often" — and that is not worth mentioning. So, if you mention it, you are implying, that a particular mistake happens more often than others.

some cops wanting their boots licked.

Neah, they are all busy chasing you over your truancy.

What would you consider to be an acceptable error rate in this situation?

I did not express any opinion of my own on the "acceptable" rates or actions in this thread. I'm just pointing out the discrepancy between our condemnation of fictitious vs. real police (and military).

A discrepancy, that, strangely enough, does not exist (or is not as big) in our disapproval of other things — like on-screen sexism or racism.

Comment: Re:Done in movies... (Score 0) 206

by mi (#49549321) Attached to: Allegation: Philly Cops Leaned Suspect Over Balcony To Obtain Password

We must burn all the Three Stooges reels!

Three Stooges are not offered as role-models. Viewer is invited to laugh at them, not be inspired by them.

And Tom and Jerry? My god!

Actually, my collection of Looney Tunes came with a video-clip by Woopy Goldberg apologizing on behalf of Warner Brothers for the "racism" and "stereotypes", which, according to her, "were wrong then and are wrong now", but, nevertheless, "are part of Americana"...

Funny, how Django had no such disclaimers and apologies over portraying the two good guys as head-hunters sniping from afar at innocent people for money. (Kinda vindicates our Dear Leader's policies, but I digress...)

Comment: Re:Done in movies... (Score 0) 206

by mi (#49549287) Attached to: Allegation: Philly Cops Leaned Suspect Over Balcony To Obtain Password

The problem is that in real life, often the people who think they are right and good actually aren't, they torture the wrong person, and there are unintended consequences.

But not in the case described in TFA — the threatened man really was a drug-dealer, and they did get the necessary info out of him.

Now, do you have statistics to back up your implication, that in real life police are more often wrong than right?

Note, that I am not saying, it justifies the miscreants in TFA. But you seem to...

Comment: Re:Done in movies... (Score 1) 206

by mi (#49548567) Attached to: Allegation: Philly Cops Leaned Suspect Over Balcony To Obtain Password

They get away with lots of things in movies that are not acceptable in real life.

Sorry, I fail to see, how mere racism or sexism can lead to a boycott, while abuse of a suspect gets a pass. And not just once either!

Likewise, if Captain Steven Hiller — Will Smith's character in Independence Day — can be a hero despite beating and otherwise abusing a prisoner, the morons of Abu Ghraib have their excuse...

The real life vs. fiction may explain the legal responsibility, but the moral condemnation of such actions should not be any different between the real and imaginary worlds.

Comment: Beating is for wussies (Score 1) 206

by mi (#49548525) Attached to: Allegation: Philly Cops Leaned Suspect Over Balcony To Obtain Password

Drug him and beat him with a $5 wrench until he tells us the password

XKCD did not invent it — the method is known as rubberhose cryptoanalis for ages — unlike wrench, a hose is less likely to leave visible marks.

But beating is for wussies — and drugging is completely gratuitous. The real men of the wonderful entity lovingly referred to as "Russkiy Mir" (Pax Russiana) use the swifter variation known as thermorectal cryptanalysis.

It does not have to involve any beating and requires a $5 soldering iron. I'll leave the details to your imagination...

Comment: Done in movies... (Score 4, Insightful) 206

by mi (#49548423) Attached to: Allegation: Philly Cops Leaned Suspect Over Balcony To Obtain Password

I remember it being done in a few movies — by the good guys — without anybody in the audience cringing. Nor do I remember any calls to boycott a movie over such things.

So, if popular culture approves of and encourages it, can't blame the cops too much for doing it despite it being merely illegal...

Comment: Free speech and trigger warnings, take a pick (Score 4, Insightful) 110

Were it not for the first amendment, there's no doubt in my mind that the people yelling "triggering!" at Christina Hoff Sommers at Oberlin would have sought her prosecution under a law like this. There is a not so fine line that many ignore between opposing cyberbullying and coddling pathetic little weaklings who simply cannot stomach the idea that there are people who hold different, maybe even offensive, views. My view as a free speech partisan is that "safe spaces" need to be smashed as aggressively as the concept of "free speech zones." If someone simply will not leave you alone, that's harassment and warrants a basic sanction under the law. However, no one has a right to not be annoyed or hear things upsetting to them. We as a society should be utterly intolerant of people who expect to be protected from such things. It should be a mark of scorn and shame to be that thin-skinned and publicly notorious for being so.

Ireland is risking a very serious mistake that will hollow out much of its claim to being an open and democratic society if this is passed.

Comment: Re:"Full responsibilty?" (Score 1) 331

by Zordak (#49542719) Attached to: Drone Killed Hostages From U.S. and Italy, Drawing Obama Apology

Careful what you wish for, the flip side of war being declared is that all the war-time powers of the president, FEMA etc. are invoked. If you don't want that to happen, you have to somehow define it as non-war military action and then it wouldn't be in violation of the Constitution, you can't have it both ways. And the amendment says only Congress can declare war, but the President is commander-in-chief of the military and there's really nowhere that explicitly states he can't commit acts of war without approval by Congress. It seems implied, but technicalities might matter.

By the way, if you're arguing the person at the top is violating the law then that naturally flows down the chain of command and as we learned in the post-WWII trials, following orders is no excuse. So if the President should go on trial for violating the constitution, the soldier shooting should go on trial for manslaughter. Possibly even murder, because you clearly meant to kill and that you happened to kill a few that weren't the target is like an assassin's collateral. I doubt that goes under manslaughter, really.

The whole military system is so turned on its head now that it has become a distinction without a difference. But it didn't start out that way. The the Framers were very leary of standing armies, and so restricted military appropriations to two years, assuming that major military appropriations would happen only in times of declared war. In the meantime, states could keep militias that could be called up in times of war. That's not how it has worked out, though. We now have a huge standing army, and while we technically follow the rule that military appropriations have a two-year life, we renew them like clockwork every two years. So in effect, we have become exactly what the Framers hated (and had just overthrown).

Computers are unreliable, but humans are even more unreliable. Any system which depends on human reliability is unreliable. -- Gilb

Working...