Please create an account to participate in the Slashdot moderation system


Forgot your password?
Slashdot Deals: Cyber Monday Sale! Courses ranging from coding to project management - all eLearning deals 25% off with coupon code "CYBERMONDAY25". ×

Comment It's dug out of salt lakes (Score 1) 112

Take a look at the mining operation halfway down the page:

And also where the hell did you get your numbers for cost? I found $9.50/0.1kg or $95/kg if buying bulk, and in smaller amounts it's $270/kg

Why are you shifting the goalposts to a price that a battery manufacturer buying by the tonne would never pay? Maybe you could just do a google search like this:

Comment Re:Sakura Battery (Score 1) 112

In the late 1990s a famous artist brought his "revolutionary fuel saving" device to the university mechanical engineering department I worked at for independent testing. It turns out he was tuning for idling. So his car engine used very little fuel while sitting at the lights doing nothing and produced crap performance and crap fuel economy while actually moving the vehicle. There was a lot of that going on.
However there have been a small number of real advances from non-experts, I think it was sometime in the 1950s that somebody thought of running a fuel pump in the opposite direction to the normal gravity fed tradition and it made a difference. Normally it's someone who improves one thing and doesn't understand that it doesn't help the entire system at all.

A classic that wasn't actually from the layman was the all-ceramic engine. The idea was that you could run it really hot and get more out if the fuel. Fantastic performance on a testbed, but the extra mass of the more involved cooling meant that one you tried to move it around it performed worse than what it was supposed to replace. Whoops. They only thought of a part and not the implications to how it was actually going to be used, just like that artist who was paranoid about his "invention" being suppressed.

Comment Re:6 launches isn't complex (Score 1) 98

Yes, last time it kicked off the shale oil/gas boom with some pretty stupid cowboy goldrush antics that are starting to have a bit of fallout now. Meanwhile solar/wind/etc are quietly progressing worldwide to compete with the much lower price.
Rusted on Republicans take note - the Chinese are making an absolute fortune selling those solar panels developed in the USA but forced offshore to keep some donors happy. America could be making a killing from that American technology if a few loud Texan oil executives had not put their interest ahead of the country. Those six million manufacturing jobs lost recently could be doing that and spinoffs instead of that many or more doing it in China.

Comment Re:Sputnik? (Score 1) 98

The need to get the thing into polar orbits of a certain height and the height envelope of what was possible to build and launch without building a new spaceport resulted in that bizzare compromise of the vehicle strapped onto the side of a rocket. It's a credit to NASA that they even managed to launch something shaped like that at all. If you don't see it as a big deal look up "bending moment" for a start, without even getting into centre of mass and aerodynamics.

Had the entire payload of the launching rocket been station parts plus enough cowl to protect it for launch we could have sent up much bigger station parts

The political restriction of one single vehicle to do everything prevented that. It's kind of what we are seeing now with a military jet that is supposed to do everything.
A lot of the more serious near future SF from the last few decades (and recent ISS modules in reality) has space stations built out of modules launched unmanned on dedicated rockets and the manned missions involve connecting them together. The Japanese near-future fiction "Space Brothers" has a moonbase built out of modules and assembled by remote controlled industrial robots before the first people are planned to turn up - even the wheeled vehicles are sent in to be at the landing site before the astronauts land. In that fiction they get around the lack of a Saturn V in the near future by sending the lander into Earth orbit unmanned and then docking something like a Soyuz to it on a manned flight to avoid having to lift all the stuff in one go.

Comment Re:Why do you insist on misquoting me? (Score 1) 126

waste your vote on [contradictory conspiracy]

In 2012 I voted against the goon who wanted me permanently unemployed. Granted I haven't had much of a raise in pay since then, but it is still better than unemployment.

his idiotic Commie results

I'm impressed that you so proudly attempted to make two contradictory arguments in one sentence. I'm not sure why this impresses me, though, you do it quite often.

Comment Re:iFixit is NOT unbiased (Score 1) 246

Apple's recycling policy is in the public record, been scrutinized and come up clean so clearly whatever you believe is based on ignorance. That other companies like iFixit fail to implement a responsible recycling policy is undisputed but you need to examine what apple is doing before you attempt to dispute my arguments. Spend some time actually learning about the subject.

Comment Re:Sputnik? (Score 2, Insightful) 98

but the development of the Shuttle and the Soviets' failure with their equivalent

Actually, the Soviets succeeded in realizing that an airplane-shaped payload strapped onto the side of a rocket makes no sense after only one flight. It took us over 100 flights before we realized the same thing. I think they won that round.

Comment Re:Quality and compatibility ... (Score 1) 319

OK - that's an example of research I didn't do :)
For a lot of stuff it isn't so hard though, but with the rise of 4k screens there's another example where a bog standard video card is not going to be enough, which may then mean a generic case isn't going to fit it and a bogs standard power supply can't feed it. So I'll concede that it could take a bit of time at the high end, but for cheapskates it's never been easier.

Comment Re:Sputnik? (Score 2) 98

Sputnik in fact was an AFTERTHOUGHT.

The Russians had a single unified ICBM effort and they decided to just "put a cherry on top" as it were. American leadership was much less in a panic about it than the general public. Eisenhower also liked the idea of setting the precedent of allowing sat overflights as the US was priming to put up spy satellites.

SCCS, the source motel! Programs check in and never check out! -- Ken Thompson