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Comment Definition of competitive (Score 1) 582 582

I don't understand your statement

Didn't think it was all that complicated. Your ICE car can go 200-500 miles between refueling. The Tesla Model S can go 200+ miles between refueling stops. That is good enough for plenty of people and hence it is competitive.

My ICE car has effectively unlimited range.

No it does not because you still have to refuel it no different than an EV. The only difference right now is that it for long distance trips it is much quicker to refuel a ICE vehicle. If you drive less than the full range of the vehicle on a given day (most people drive 50 miles per day) then the EV is actually more convenient since you can refuel it at home when the car is not in use. For local driving I'd MUCH rather have an EV in most cases. For long distance driving you want a ICE or a hybrid right now. In time that may change.

Comment Re:DC power? (Score 1) 197 197

Yep that windows 10 marketing hype and B$ reviews are certainly getting more than a little over the top. That don't seem to be doing that well though and they are running into a real problem. As they push more the windows 10 hype is starting to becoming more annoying and putting people off, so they try harder to promote hype and instead of winning converts they are just becoming more annoying. I think their key market is baulking and looks to be waiting more than a quarter for the B$ to die down so that reality can start to leak through prior to wasting the effort and frustration on yet another unwanted upgrade.

DC makes sense with your own battery capacity and only using minimal AC from the mains as emergency charge up, if you solar capacity or battery capacity was too small. So likely houses will go all DC as it is much safer and reduces capital cost (all appliances without transformers), with AC only going to the battery outside. Mains power could of course become hugely expensive with so little current flowing to pay for that infrastructure. Interesting problem though of medium and high density dwellings with insufficient area for power generation, not to bad if they are all together but really bad when they are scattered amongst low density dwellings with sufficient area to generate their own electricity.

Comment Re:Crooks are afraid of the dark, too (Score 1) 167 167

Well, but according to the grandparent article reffered to in this article, this article is bullshit "Research suggests that road accidents have risen by 20 per cent in areas where street lights were switched off." So a twenty percent increase in car accidents, so shit for brain austerity fuck wit has simply shifted the cost from the rich back to poorer tax payers driving back home from work in the dark or driving to work in the dark. Hey, 20% increase in car accidents, death, dismemberment and permanent disability, so the fuck what, as long as the rich pay less tax and he sleeps better. How well are those 20 percenters sleeping after their car accidents, how many as sleeping permanently. How much would sane countries spend to reduce car accidents by 20%?

Comment Re:quickly to be followed by self-driving cars (Score 2) 582 582

Investment value is the real gnarly problem here. What do you think will be the future value of high priced exclusive infernal combustion vehicles, in the second hand market when gas stations start shutting down. How are new ones going to be sold, with a limited life span and perhaps no future second hand value. In fact those companies that start afresh without the burden of an infernal combustion past or capital loss in equipment, engineering, now empty patents, will have a huge advantage.

As countries try to dump fossil fuels on a shrinking market, so the price will temporarily drop until economies of scale collapse and regulations ban the pollution. The switch from infernal combustion to electric will be a whole lot messier than most people think unless cheap conversions become possible.

Comment Re:In the US. (Score 1) 582 582

Again, this works in the US with big suburbs where everyone has a parking lot with an electric outlet. In other countries (like good old Europe), where most people live in apartments and there is just no way you can plug your car at night, it doesn't work.

Apartment buildings and fixed parking spots are far from mutually exclusive, either through a parking cellar or dedicated garages/parking spots. Granted, Norway is a cold country where a garage may be more useful than down south but by household:

58% have a garage or carport
25% have a private parking spot
17% have no parking

Of the last 17% only 38% have a car, so in practice it's only 6.5% that don't have a fixed spot for their car. And that probably includes people that have rented a parking spot nearby, in practice few wants to be nomads trying to find free street parking every day. Of course you would have to get an electrician to mount an outlet, but beyond that it's not really a problem.

Comment Re:Crooks are afraid of the dark, too (Score 1) 167 167

I used to walk home through a park. Except on cloudless nights with no moon, you got enough reflected light to be able to see quite clearly across it. Then there some some hysteria about the potential for being attacked (triggered by a flasher, who only exposed himself to people in broad daylight) and they added a row of streetlights along the side of the path. If you stood about 10m from the path, you were completely invisible to someone walking along it, but they were clearly visible to you for their entire trip across the park (as were any potential witnesses on the path). If someone actually wanted to attack people crossing the park, the lights made it a lot easier. It would only take a few seconds to hit someone and drag them out of the visible area.

Comment Trucks will be hybrids, not pure EV (Score 2) 582 582

And frankly, current ranges on EV's make them pretty much useless for trucks. Who really wants to stop for a couple hours a couple times a day?

You won't see pure EV trucks for a long time. What you'll see is a power train similar to that on locomotives. Diesel engine charging electric motors with a battery bank to deal with the excess. It's very efficient, huge torque and the technology is well understood. I'm kind of surprised we aren't seeing it already.

Comment Problems can be solved (Score 3, Insightful) 582 582

EVs cost significantly more than gas cars, don't have the range of gas cars, and apartment dwellers have no way to charge them overnight.

All of which are solvable problems. With scale EVs eventually could be cheaper than gas cars since they have fewer parts. There already are EVs with range competitive with gas cars (see the Model S) and they are only getting better. As for apartment dwellers, eventually apartments will end up providing charging infrastructure though I fully expect this to happen late in the game because the cost isn't trivial.

Electric vehicles will probably reach a tipping point when either A) recharge times get to less than 15 minutes with a 200 mile range or B) EVs with a 500+ mile range are developed and economically feasible. Until that happens we'll see hybrids serving as a technology test platform until such time as the battery technology matures sufficiently. I fully expect most luxury cars to be plug-in hybrids within the next 10-15 years. I think you'll start to see semi trucks and long haul vehicles becoming hybrids with a power train similar to locomotives (diesel with electric motors driving the wheels).

EVs won't reach the tipping point tomorrow or even probably 5 years from now but I do think they are the likely future with hybrids being a stepping stone to get there.

Comment Re:settled cannon for about a decade now (Score 1) 66 66

Part of me wonders if this is deliberate. No graphics drivers that are useful, no games. No games, no Linux desktop.

Why? AMD has no stake or interest in what OS you game on, they're just looking to sell their hardware. They get no benefit from enabling or pushing a migration to Linux unless they can steal customers from nVidia/Intel that way, which seems highly unlikely. You don't need a conspiracy to explain why companies don't do things that don't benefit them.

Comment A concession stand that sells gasoline (Score 1) 582 582

Apparently the deals they make with the gasoline/diesel suppliers are so bad there is almost no profit in selling gas.

That is correct. The business model is basically that it is a concession stand that uses fuel as the means to lure people to the store. Kind of similar to how a movie theater makes all their money on concessions because the revenues for the movie (around 80%) go back to the company distributing the movie. Pretty much all the profits in the oil and gas industry are made by the big oil and gas companies. They might have service stations (like ExxonMobil) to vertically integrate the entire supply chain but independent fuel stations really don't make any money on the fuel itself.

If money can't buy happiness, I guess you'll just have to rent it.