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Comment: Re:Yeah? (Score 1) 260

by lgw (#46787023) Attached to: Mercedes Pooh-Poohs Tesla, Says It Has "Limited Potential"

I expect to save enough in my life to afford such things, but then my tastes in other areas are cheap. We probably all have something we'd spend too much on, given the resources.

But yeah, the complexity is starting to bite car makers in the ass. However, luxury car makers learned in the 80s that "reliability" was a really important feature. I remember a great Toyota add with a golf quartet where the first 3 each bragged about their luxury cars and the last just said "my Camry's not in the shop". Hopefully the luxury car makers will remember this, too.

Comment: Re:Shame this happened (Score 1) 72

by plover (#46786807) Attached to: Plant Breeders Release 'Open Source Seeds'

A lot of the animosity towards Monsanto comes from their overall behavior. Creating the terminator gene is first to mind. Next are the numerous allegations about misconduct: complaints that they do inadequate studies, they hire certain researchers expecting certain study outcomes, that they tamper with study results, and that they have bribed government officials. However, most of those reports come from the wacko anti-GMO crowd (who are really a bunch of anti-anything idiots), so it's hard to know if there's a shred of truth to any of the complaints.

The biggest gripe I have is their drive to produce pest- and herbicide-resistant crops. Every one of these is putting other farmers' crops at risk, because they're creating pesticide-resistant super-bugs and herbicide-resistant super-weeds. Those bugs and weeds don't limit themselves to Monsanto-seeded fields, they're natural organisms that spread, and those bugs are now attacking non-Monsanto crops, and the weeds are infesting non-Monsanto fields. Monsanto knew this was going to happen from the start of the program, they estimated it would take about 20 years for it to happen (it actually took less than 10 for the corn rootworm to evolve Bt resistance), yet they went ahead and did it anyway.

Had they focused their modifications only on creating high yield and high nutrition crops, instead of trying to fight the resistance battle, their overall agricultural activities would have been a lot more responsible.

Comment: Re:So much nonsense in terms (Score 1) 131

by plover (#46785689) Attached to: Criminals Using Drones To Find Cannabis Farms and Steal Crops

LED lamps do not put out nearly as much heat as High Pressure Sodium (HPS) lamps. I have a (disconnected) 400W HPS that I could easily have cooked on the top of the reflector, and probably broiled meat directly beneath it. I replaced it with a 144W LED floodlamp, and now I can hold the operating heat sink in my hand; the glass lens pane on the bottom is at room temperature. I am no longer concerned about fire safety in my house.

One major difference, though, is I'm growing orchids, which require far less light than cannabis. I need only two 144W LED floodlamps to illuminate a 72 square foot area. The pot growers will cram as many 400 W lamps in a grow operation as they can, sometimes a dozen or more in a single small room, whatever they can draw from the circuit breaker panel. They'll keep a large external vent fan running year round, including the dead of winter, to keep the room from igniting.

If I were to grow pot, I'm sure I'd need a lot more light fixtures, but even a dozen LED lamps in the same room probably wouldn't risk burning my house down.

Comment: Re:Too poor (Score 1) 173

by Pfhorrest (#46785621) Attached to: I expect to retire ...

And how much do you expect someone making $25k a year to be able to buy? Bearing in mind they're going to be having to rent while saving up for a down payment. And then they if they somehow manage that, the interest alone on a 30-year mortgage is likely to be greater than their rent.

I agree that owning your own home is the first step toward a truly secure retirement, but that is even further out of reach of the majority of people than just saving enough to rent a tiny apartment through their old age is. You say "buy as much as you can" like buying anything at all is even remotely feasible. And I say this as someone making twice the median income, living the kind of college-student life I've described, and still looking at pretty much me entire life before I can buy anything at all.

Comment: Re:Enh as much as I dislike Oracle... (Score 2) 106

by plover (#46785595) Attached to: Oracle Deflects Blame For Troubled Oregon Health Care Site

Oracle consultants were in the midst of the mess, they saw the failings, they repeatedly reported to the state that the project was going off the rails, and yet they still managed to cash their paychecks.

Had the consultants actually threatened them with "either you hire a professional to do the systems integration or we're off the job," and had they then removed themselves from the failing project, they'd be 100% blameless. But they didn't walk away, they just wrote some CYA memos and collected their money.

Oracle gets to take as much blame as anyone for their mess.

Comment: Re:Too poor (Score 1) 173

by Pfhorrest (#46785231) Attached to: I expect to retire ...

You realize the median income in America is only about $25k/yr right? That means half of the country makes that or less. Which even with the best money management skills isn't going to leave with with much for retirement, unless you live like a college student alone by yourself in a tiny rented bedroom for your entire life AND have no irregular expenses like car repairs or medical care.

$25000 times about 0.7 for after-tax take-home pay minus about $1100/mo for ALL expenses total -- housing, utilities, food, transportation including purchasing a means of transportation, education which you will need to get to even that median income level, necessary items to work in today's world like a computer and phone, and so on -- times about 45 years of working and saving the leftovers, divided by 15 years of life expectancy after that, leaves you about $1075/mo to live off of for those 15 years.

Given housing expenses of 50% of that monthly stipend, or about $550/mo (which this tells me is the bottom of the range nationally, for a one-bedroom apartment, with the average being about $750 instead), that leaves less than $20/day to cover every other expense you will ever have in your entire life.

That is the best case scenario that over half of Americans are facing. But they're all a bunch of unskilled losers so they deserve that fate amirite?

Comment: Re:Yeah? (Score 2) 260

by lgw (#46785087) Attached to: Mercedes Pooh-Poohs Tesla, Says It Has "Limited Potential"

Enlighten me - some things aren't obvious from a quick ride. Does the Model S have:

* A night vision hud with pedestrian highlighting
* Automatic lane departure detection with options to warn or steer back into the lane
* Radar in the blind spots and a warning light near the side view mirrors?
* Distance-calibrated path guides on the backup camera view (I heard this is coming w/ a F/W upgrade)
* A button that jacks up the front end a couple extra inches so that you can pull up to the parking curb without scraping anything? (I know it has some ride heght adjustment, maybe that works here?)
* Airline-style fold-out tables for the back seats so you have a desk to work at if you like
* Automatic detection of interior air quality with auto flip between exterior and recycled interior air for ventilation (recycle the air through the carbon filters till any smell is gone, but not so long that CO2 builds up inside).
* Vent fans that vary in speed a bit over time, like a breeze gusting a bit, so that the air feels less stale without a constant in-your-face blower?
* Two sun visors for the driver for roads that wind back and forth?
* A motor to open/close the trunk remotely when your hands are full?
* An umbrella slot in the door?

That's just a few features off the top of my head. And dammit, my car needs that umbrella slot more than anything - get on it mid-tier luxury car makers!

Comment: Re:Switching from Mercedes to Tesla after $12K bil (Score 1) 260

by HornWumpus (#46784153) Attached to: Mercedes Pooh-Poohs Tesla, Says It Has "Limited Potential"

WTF are you doing even considering non-warranty service from a dealer?

I bet it's just a clutch and the dealer is fucking you, yet again, this time with ghost pepper and crunchy peanut butter lube.

Having purchased 4? That makes you are repeat chump. Like someone who keeps sending $50K to Nigerian scammers.

Comment: Re:Where is your model S competitor... (Score 1) 260

by HornWumpus (#46784129) Attached to: Mercedes Pooh-Poohs Tesla, Says It Has "Limited Potential"

Toilets (western style) all function more or less the same, hence they have to look similar.

Same with econoboxes. Four seats, crumple zones. Not much room left for creativity.

When they try to get creative you end up with abominations like the new 'beetle' and Fiat '500'.

"There is no distinctly American criminal class except Congress." -- Mark Twain