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Comment: Diodes (Score 1) 582

by Lonewolf666 (#49797329) Attached to: How Tesla Batteries Will Force Home Wiring To Go Low Voltage

Even with switching power supplies, 12v is not optimal because of the losses in the diodes. Even Schottky diodes have a voltage drop of 0.3v or so.

I think it would be a good idea to standardize on something in the 40-50 volt range for the DC grid in the house, with some leeway for adjusting the actual charging voltage to what is convenient for the battery.
A 42-volt electrical system ( comes to mind. Even if it did not really take off the first time around.

Comment: Re:All of you should buy AMD whenever possible (Score 1) 98

The Open Source AMD drivers tend to lag a few years behind, especially in performance, so the latest generation of cards (HD 7xxx and its rebrandings) is hardly better under Linux than the HD 6xxx series, despite being more capable hardware in theory. Really new models may not work at all or only in 2D.

Closed source AMD drivers still have an iffy reputation. Personally, I'd avoid them unless I really need the performance or a specific feature.

Comment: Re:Power savings (Score 1) 98

Sounds interesting, but might be too expensive in the short run and not as urgent. "Normal" system RAM tends to be larger than typical VRAM sizes but not as bandwidth-critical. Also, classical DIMM modules allow upgrading if necessary.

Where HBM as the combined system RAM looks interesting are consoles. The PS4 in particular already has
- an APU based design from AMD
- fast but expensive GDDR5 RAM
- a fixed, non - upgradeable memory size

That looks like a scenario which is just waiting for HBM. Though probably not in the current generation, as one of the main advantages (even higher bandwidth) might be irrelevant to a console with fixed performance requirements.

Comment: Re:Power savings (Score 1) 98

There is more in the works (Zen CPU cores), and I hope that will work out too. I have some AMD shares as well, but I'd also love to see serious competition again.

On the CPU side, AMD is even more behind Intel than it is on the GPU side behind Nvidia. If Zen can fix that, it will be even more important than catching up to Nvidia.

And considering APUs, one major drawback in the last years used to be memory bandwidth. Where discrete cards do reasonably well with GDDR5, APUs really get crippled by having to share DDR3 between CPU and GPU. A stack of HBM memory for the graphics RAM should do wonders here ;-)

Comment: Re:Pay Settlments from Police Pension Funds (Score 2) 201

If you make really obvious mistakes at work, and more than once, you might eventually be fired for bad performance.

Which is exactly what should happen in this case:
Even with only a high school education, cops should be able to understand the difference between arresting someone for assault and using extortion to get a pro-police statement on Facebook. If they don't get that or simply ignore Baton Bob's rights, they are unfit for duty. Get rid of them.

Comment: Re:Sooooo...... (Score 1) 776

You, your wife and me are part of a minority. Some people just don't enjoy movies with threadbare logic, even if "everyone else" loves them.

See also the "Mohs Scale Of Science Fiction Hardness" (

For me, a Science Fiction movie or book should fall under Mohs: Physics Plus or a higher degree of consistency to be considered good. Which tends to disqualify Star Wars and most of Star Trek, and thus eliminates a lot of the available Science Fiction flicks.

One of the reasons I usually read books rather than watching movies.

Comment: Re:It's about content in EUROPE.. Not whole world (Score 1) 114

by Lonewolf666 (#49631121) Attached to: Europe Vows To Get Rid of Geo-Blocking

I think French Movie Studio will likely license their movie to Netflix Europe (having separate licenses per country will make no more sense) once the theater run is up. And Netflix Europe will "lend" it everywhere in Europe.

After all, at this point it is a choice between getting no more revenue or some revenue.

Comment: Re:Unless (Score 1) 301

Not in Germany. There is no law in Germany that would automatically nullify the copyright on works of a criminal.

Actually, the state of Bavaria still uses its claim to the copyright of Hitler's "Mein Kampf" to block re-publishing of that work. I'm not entirely sure if that claim is solid, but so far it works for them.

Comment: Research and royalties as obstacle (Score 1) 301

but unless the diaries are in the public domain, isn't this pretty cut and dry? If the diaries are in private hands, they're in private hands and you need permission to use their contents.

AFAIK, legally it is pretty cut and dry.

The question is:
Should it be or should there be changes in the legislation? And if you change legislation, where do you draw the line?

Because there is currently a LOT of material that might be interesting for researchers, but is only accessible if you pay a fee. As in, most material controlled by scientific publishers such as Elsevier.
With fees of some 10 dollars per article, buying access to one or two articles is affordable enough, but if you want to review some dozen to get an overview of your field of research it becomes expensive. Depending on your budget, perhaps prohibitively expensive.

The current case is no different:
The estate of Joseph Goebbels does not want to forbid the use of the diaries but they want royalties for the extracts. So there is some financial obstacle to research.

Personally, I'm in favor for easier access to scientific materials if they were created with public funds. Perhaps by putting a clause in the work contract of the researchers that they give their employers shared publishing rights.
In case of some old Nazi diaries though, I'd prefer the simple approach of waiting another 8 1/2 months. After 2015, almost all of those will be in the public domain anyway :-)

Comment: Re:Valve needs to use their clout (Score 1) 309

by Lonewolf666 (#49483849) Attached to: NVIDIA's New GPUs Are Very Open-Source Unfriendly


It would also avoid accusations of anti-competitive behavior, as the requirement could in principle be satisfied by all vendors. I'm not sure if AMD can get into trouble at this point for anti-competitive behavior, given their shrunken market share, but it can't hurt to play it safe.

Comment: Re:A bit much (Score 1) 370

by Lonewolf666 (#49421291) Attached to: How the Pentagon Wasted $10 Billion On Military Projects

All that aside though, the submitter is wrong to characterize this spending as "pork". Pork is a localized project meant to benefit a specific representative's district, while this is clearly an expression of American foreign policy generally. We believe we have to be able to instantly thwart any threat conceivable at any time forever, even though that's impossible. These projects were specifically designed to stop a missile attack on US soil by North Korea, which is absurd

The claim that these systems were designed for stopping North Korean missiles are indeed absurd.

But North Korea is not that far from China. So the real objective was probably stopping Chinese missiles, while North Korea was just the pretext and bogeyman.

Comment: Re: Bargain bin (Score 1) 142

by Lonewolf666 (#49420665) Attached to: Stanford Develops Fast-Charging, Stable Aluminum Battery

Don't underestimate the importance of the bargain bin. Recently the cheap stuff has become cheap enough to make it commercially interesting even without subsidies.

According to Wikipedia, we already have grid parity in many scenarios:

Comment: Re:And the hype begins... (Score 1) 96

by Lonewolf666 (#49400413) Attached to: The Democratization of Medical Diagnosis and Discovery

There is also a middle ground:
Tests with pre-programmed equipment given to the patient for use at home for one night, as a screening test. If the results look suspicious, a night sleeping in a test facility follows.

I'm halfway through such a screening myself right now. The equipment included a pulse oxymeter, a microphone for detecting snoring and a programmable device that records the readings over one night. All of it probably lab grade or close enough for the screening.

"Facts are stupid things." -- President Ronald Reagan (a blooper from his speeach at the '88 GOP convention)