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Comment: No. (Score 5, Insightful) 226

by eldavojohn (#48923389) Attached to: Facebook Censoring Images of the Prophet Muhammad In Turkey

To be fair to Zuckerberg and Facebook, the company must obey the law of any country in which it operates.

No. He came out in support of a universal maxim and then went back to his board who showed him X dollars of income they get by operating in Turkey. Just like the revenue lost when Google left mainland China. Instead of sacrificing that revenue to some other social network in Turkey run by cowards, he became a coward himself in the name of money. It is an affront to the deaths and memory of the Charlie Hebdo editors. His refusal could have worked as leverage for social change in Turkey but now it will not.

So no, your statement isn't fair to Zuckerberg and his company and the platinum backscratcher he gets to keep with "TURKEY" inscribed on it. Fuck that greedy bastard and his petty meaningless lip service.

+ - Valve's Economist Yanis Varoufakis Appointed Greece's Finance Minister->

Submitted by eldavojohn
eldavojohn (898314) writes "A turnover in the Greek government resulted from recent snap elections placing SYRIZA (Coalition of the Radical Left) in power — just shy of an outright majority by two seats. Atheist and youngest Prime Minister in Greek history since 1865 Alexis Tsipras has been appointed the new prime minister and begun taking immediate drastic steps against the recent austerity laws put in place by prior administrations. One such step has been to appoint Valve's economist Yanis Varoufakis to position of Finance Minister of Greece. For the past three years Varoufakis has been working at Steam to analyze and improve the Steam Market but now has the opportunity to improve one of the most troubled economies in the world."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Rumor: Fox Is Planning an X-Files Revival (Score 1) 476

by eldavojohn (#48904215) Attached to: Best 1990s Sci-fi show?
In the news recently are rumors that Carter, Anderson and Duchovny will reunite for new X-Files episodes. Fox has sorta confirmed this.

I own all the DVDs, a couple years ago I rewatched them. I may come off as a rabid fan at times but the background music was atrociously horrid. Also the story arc plot became overly convoluted and impossible to explain at times. That said, one of the most convoluted characters (Krycek) was my favorite. Aside from several minor valid criticisms like that, I really think it's a great platform for modern storytelling.

I do have to ask myself, at times, if there is some level of insane conspiracy theory today that we owe at least in part to those people watching X-Files when younger. I have to admit that the 9/11 inside job truthers movement claims could have been ripped from the pages of an X-Files script.

My biggest concern, of course, is whether or not it could still be fresh. With recent high quality additions to television canon, we'd have to be prepared for Chris Carter coming back at us with a 90's angle when episodes like Home really aren't as shocking anymore. The bar has been raised (thankfully).

Right now, The X-Files is going to occupy a contextual place in television history like The Twilight Zone. A revival could very well tarnish that. On the other hand, I've never felt like I really received closure on the whole story arc ...

Comment: Re:How fast to charge. (Score 1) 426

by RobinH (#48794211) Attached to: Chevrolet Unveils 200-Mile Bolt EV At Detroit Auto Show
This is pretty obviously meant to be a "second vehicle" aka "grocery getter". Our 5-person family has a minivan, plus a Ford Focus as a second vehicle, which I drive to work and to run errands but never take on long trips. I can't actually fit the whole family-of-five in the Focus, but it works as a second vehicle. This Bolt would also work exactly as well.

Comment: Re:If your decision is.... (Score 1) 512

by RobinH (#48768251) Attached to: Publications Divided On Self-Censorship After Terrorist Attack
This is an odd situation. This isn't a Streisand effect. The cartoons aren't information that they're trying to suppress, they're just viewed as offensive, the same way we would view cartoons of someone dismembering a baby as offensive. (Note that I would still support publication of any of those cartoons, even if I found them offensive.) If journalists wrote about the horrific things ISIS was doing and those journalists were attacked for criticizing ISIS then the proper response is to make sure that information gets out there. On the other hand, if I put up a sign pointed at my neighbor's house with (hand-drawn) pictures of dead babies and he over-reacted and shot me, I think he should be charged with murder, but I don't think the response from the neighborhood should be to put up more such signs. I'm pretty sure freedom of speech is about informing other people about stuff, not about yelling in someone's face continually when they've indicated they've long since stopped listening.

+ - Seismological Society of America Claims Fracking Reactivated Ohio Fault-> 1

Submitted by eldavojohn
eldavojohn (898314) writes "There have been suspicions that fracking has caused minor earthquakes in Ohio but last year seismic data recorded by the Earthscope Transportable Array was analyzed by the Seismological Society of America using template matching and has resulted in a new publication and press release making the statement that Hilcorp Energy's fracking in Poland Township in March of 2014 "did not create a new fault, rather it activated one that we didn’t know about prior to the seismic activity." The earthquakes occurred in the Precambrian basement and lead the researchers to posit that further unknown faults may be activated by fracking. The press release ends with urging for "close cooperation among government, industry and the scientific community as hydraulic fracturing operations expand in areas where there’s the potential for unknown pre-existing faults.""
Link to Original Source

Comment: Early Soviet Computing? (Score 4, Interesting) 80

by eldavojohn (#48738403) Attached to: Interviews: Ask Alexander Stepanov and Daniel E. Rose a Question
Alexander Stepanov, I have never had a chance to ask someone as qualified as you about this topic. I grew up on the opposite side of the Iron Curtain and have constantly wondered if (surely there must have been) alternative computing solutions developed in the USSR prior to Elbrus and SPARC. So my question is whether or not you know of any hardware or instruction set alternatives that died on the vine or were never mass fabricated in Soviet times? I don't expect to you to reveal some super advanced or future predicting instruction set but it has always disturbed me that these things aren't documented somewhere -- as you likely know failures can provide more fruit than successes. Failing that, could you offer us any tails of early computing that only seem to run in Russian circles?

If you can suggest references (preferably in English) I would be most appreciative. I know of only one book and it seems to be a singular point of view.

Comment: Re:Jeavon's Paradox (Score 2) 82

by RobinH (#48705591) Attached to: Pew Survey: Tech Increases Productivity, But Also Time Spent Working
Yeah, but it's backwards. We've been making individuals (even unskilled ones) much more productive, and total productivity is going up, but interestingly that's not driving higher demand for unskilled labor (since about the 70's). It does seem to be driving some demand for skilled labor. That plus deregulation is what's driving income inequality. I would have thought the Jevons paradox thing should be increasing demand for unskilled labor.

Comment: Are You Joking? (Score 3, Interesting) 182

by eldavojohn (#48625017) Attached to: US Links North Korea To Sony Hacking

> It is not known how the US government has determined that North Korea is the culprit

Of course it's known. The same way they established that Iraq had chemical weapons. The method is known as "because we say so".

Are you joking? I thought it was well established that there were chemical weapons in Iraq we just only found weapons designed by us, built by Europeans in factories in Iraq. And therefore the US didn't trumpet their achievements. In the case of Iraqi chemical weapons, the US established that Iraq had chemical weapons not because they said so but because Western countries had all the receipts.

Comment: Already doing it some places (Score 2) 84

by RobinH (#48539099) Attached to: US Treasury Dept: Banks Should Block Tor Nodes
I setup a Raspberry Pi as a tor *relay* (not a tor exit node) just as a weekend project this year. Within a couple of days, we couldn't log into our bank (TD Canada Trust). I was able to log in by VPN'ing into my work PC. I took the tor relay offline, and within a couple of days I could log into my bank again from home. Both relays and exit node IPs are public knowledge, but I still think it's wrong to block relays.

Comment: Utilities will be the biggest users (Score 3, Interesting) 461

by RobinH (#48531569) Attached to: Why Elon Musk's Batteries Frighten Electric Companies

This will revolutionize the grid. I was reading that lithium ion batteries are around $500/kWh right now wholesale (and I've seen some you can buy from China that make me believe that's roughly true). Then there's a projected cost as low as $180/kWh in about 5 years after Tesla's factory ramps up (and no doubt others start to come online).

Right now (in Ontario) I can buy peak electricity at about 13 cents per kWh and maybe 7 or 8 cents per kWh at night. Imagine a system of batteries where I buy power at night, store it, and then use that during the day. I worked the rough numbers and at today's battery prices I'd be hard pressed to get a return on my investment in 20 years, and that's only considering battery cost. However, if you use $180/kWh, suddenly you might see the payback period on a system like that drop below 10 years, and if I can do it at that price, what can a utility do with its economy of scale?

The addition of economical grid-level storage will radically change the way the utilities run their business. You won't need so much idle generating capacity such as natural gas or coal sitting around to service peak loads because you can charge up your battery banks at night using nuclear and during the day with solar and consume them during the peak periods.

Comment: Is Bloomberg the New Buzzfeed? (Score 5, Informative) 461

by eldavojohn (#48531349) Attached to: Why Elon Musk's Batteries Frighten Electric Companies
What the hell is up with the title of this article? Nowhere did I find any indication of anyone being "scared" or "frightened." On the contrary the article presents contradicting information:

Still, the Edison Electric Institute, a trade group representing America’s investor-owned utilities, recently announced that its members will help to encourage electric vehicle use by spending $50 million annually to buy plug-in service trucks and invest in car-charging technology. “Advancing plug-in electric vehicles and technologies is an industry priority,” said EEI President Thomas Kuhn.

Uh, "advancing as a priority" is actually the opposite of fear.

Southern California Edison is planning to spend about $9.2 billion through 2017 to allow the two-way flow of electricity on its system, said Edison International CEO Ted Craver. “We are certainly big supporters of electric transportation,” Craver said. He added: “That electric car isn’t just going to stay at home. It’s going to go other places. It’s going to need to get charged in other places. And I think our ability to provide that glue for all those things that are going to plug into that network is really how we see our core business.”

Again, sounds positive. Actually the only negative thing in the article is that electric cars might cause a load our infrastructure isn't ready for -- to the contrary a solar charging station in the home would mitigate this. Is the new journalism format to title your articles with a thesis directly contrary to all the actual evidence you're about to present?

"Plastic gun. Ingenious. More coffee, please." -- The Phantom comics