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Comment: Re:LMFTFY (Score 1) 629

by Andy Dodd (#48459497) Attached to: Two Google Engineers Say Renewables Can't Cure Climate Change

This has always been my opinion. We NEED another generation of modernized nuke plants to bridge us until renewables are more mature.

Trying to mass-deploy renewables now WILL fail. We simply don't have the energy storage technology to do it.

One more generation of nuclear will bridge the gap. And ideally, during that time, in addition to renewables, work will be done on next-generation nuclear plants that can use the current generation's waste as fuel.

If I recall correctly, the IFR reactor design in the 1990s had the potential, if it had continued development, to be able to supply 100% of the US energy demand for 100 years, using only the existing reactor waste at that time as fuel. The resultant waste from an IFR fuel cycle would only remain hazardous for 500 years (as the longest-lived waste products from LWRs can actually be used as IFR fuel)

Comment: Re:It boils down to energy storage costs (Score 1) 629

by Andy Dodd (#48459333) Attached to: Two Google Engineers Say Renewables Can't Cure Climate Change

Not entirely true, if anything, it's MORE dangerous if you're changing power levels to match load.

There's a reason France (along with nuclear-powered ships) are the only ones that do such a thing. (In both cases because they have to - those communities have gotten VERY good at doing so, but it's still NOT an optimal way to run a nuke plant and does introduce new ways for the plant to have an accident.)

Nuclear reactors have properties that cause delayed reactions to control inputs, if you don't handle these properly, Bad Things happen. (And in fact, such Bad Things DID happen in an extreme case at Chernobyl. They tried to restart a xenon-poisoned reactor too quickly, and when the xenon finally burned off, there was a massive power transient.)

Comment: Re:Wooden bikes are cool (Score 1) 71

by SuperBanana (#48414931) Attached to: Collin Graver and his Wooden Bicycle (Video)

"They're much like normal biles otherwise and I presume exactly as comfortable."

Comfort comes almost entirely from the tire size and pressure relative to rider weight and road conditions. The frame is largely irrelevant, at least for anything made in the last few decades by any half-competent company.

"Getting the bearings and power transmission were apparently the harddest bits."

Getting alignment on these items is the hardest bit. Bicycles require an incredible degree of proper alignment of a couple of key components in order for things to work right, mostly shifting, but also handling-wise.

Comment: Irrelevant (Score 1) 71

by SuperBanana (#48414919) Attached to: Collin Graver and his Wooden Bicycle (Video)

"I'd guess that yet another disadvantage of a wooden bicycle, at least when sharing the road with motor vehicles, is that it's impossible to trigger a green traffic signal without enough metal surface to disturb the flux in the induction loop beneath the approach to the intersection."

1)Inductive loop sensors are much better than they used to be, and many can detect aluminum bike frames, metal in the wheels (almost all spokes are metal - carbon fiber spokes are very rare; many rims are still aluminum), or the metal in the drivetrain (chain, cables, derailleurs.)

2)A large percentage of bicycle frames are made from carbon fiber; even many wheels these days. No different from wood.

3)Many traffic lights now use camera-bases systems. They're cheaper and easier to set up/maintain, and can quantify the number of vehicles for better decisions regarding prioritization, etc. I think some can detect emergency vehicles, provide traffic statistics, and record video if there's a crash.

Some, but not all states, allow cyclists to go through a light if it doesn't change for them after X minutes. Idaho allows cyclists to treat red lights as stop signs, a law groups are trying to get passed here.

Comment: Boneshakers did not have pneumatic tires (Score 1) 71

by SuperBanana (#48414839) Attached to: Collin Graver and his Wooden Bicycle (Video)

They were boneshakers because they didn't have pneumatic tires. This is not true of a modern bicycle, and we also have far more understanding of mechanical systems and materials, including wood, now.

It is a widely perpetuated myth, mostly by bicycle frame makers who are attempting to get you to spend gobs of money on special designs, frame materials, etc that are "vertically stiff and horizontally compliant" (this phrase is now such marketing cliche it's mocked a lot)...that road bicycle suspension happens in the frame. It doesn't/shouldn't. It happens almost entirely in the tire/tube; when you go over a bump, the rest of the tube+tire stretches slightly to absorb the impact, and then contracts back. Some suspension also happens in the wheel; a wheel is quite strong in part because the spokes and rim both have some give to them.

Just as with cars, the most effective suspension is the one that has the least unsprung weight. So for example, high performance cars often have suspension and brake components made out of high-strength-for-weight materials, but in general, car manufacturers try to keep the weight of the suspension down.

On a bicycle with a properly sized and inflated tire for the rider's weight and road conditions, there is very little unsprung mass

Comment: Why are you a corporate shill? (Score 5, Interesting) 111

by SuperBanana (#48412401) Attached to: Interviews: Ask Malcolm Gladwell a Question

Why did you, after college, attend the National Journalism Center, a corporate-funded program created to counter the mediaâ(TM)s alleged âoeanti-business biasâ?

Why, as someone who is half-Jamaican, have you repeatedly associated yourself (and apparently continue to do so) with the white supremacist organization EPPC, which fights activists for economic justice?

Why did you write for American Spectator, which churned out anti-Clinton conspiracy theories?

Why did you recycle tobacco industry propaganda and quote lobbyists for Washington Post articles you "wrote"? Why did Phillip Morris consider you, according to their internal documents, to be a "friend" who could be counted on for pro-tobacco-industry stories?

Why did you clearly promote drugs for treating ADHD in kids, in which you heavily quoted researchers who were paid heavily by the pharma industry?

Why did you cite a pharma-industry cited study and defend the industry when it was attacked for high drug costs?

Why did you blame the victims in the Enron collapse, defending executives who committed gross fraud?

Comment: Re:Ancient news (Score 1) 327

by Just Some Guy (#48397501) Attached to: Apple Disables Trim Support On 3rd Party SSDs In OS X

Apple should find a way to sign these

They did, at WWDC 2013. More to the point, I wonder why the Trim Enabler dev isn't signing his kext? Are there legitimate reasons, like he needs a special kind of thing that can't be signed using the provided tools, or is it because he doesn't want to pay for a dev license to sign the software he's selling? In a vacuum of information, there's not much point in speculating.

People replace HDDs in macs, they need to support it.

Why? Is TRIM empirically faster on your drive, or is this something you think you need?

Comment: Re:Generic SATA storage devices don't support TRIM (Score 1) 327

by Just Some Guy (#48397453) Attached to: Apple Disables Trim Support On 3rd Party SSDs In OS X

I'm wondering about that myself. Early benchmarks showed that the 840 EVO benefits from TRIM, but that drive also had wonky firmware that was causing read degradation. Could the old firmware have accounted for some of the benchmark problems?

Side note: I applied the firmware upgrade myself last week and it went through without a hitch. YMMV, but I had an easy time of it.

Algol-60 surely must be regarded as the most important programming language yet developed. -- T. Cheatham