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Comment: Extended Range (Score 4, Insightful) 114

by Firethorn (#48677257) Attached to: Tesla Roadster Update Extends Range

Summary: Lots of improvements in a number of areas can make a big, big difference.

Since ~2008 I know they've increased the energy density of their 18650 cells by 20-30%, which would correspond to a 20-30% increase in range no matter what. After that it starts adding up quick.

I wonder if they might end up restarting roadster production. For a small car manufacturer that could even be fairly logical - produce as many as you can for a relatively short period of time(few years), then shut down production for a few years to let the demand recover and grow.

Perhaps more importantly, increasing the range of a car from 250 miles to ~400 also means that you could put a smaller battery pack in that costs nearly half as much, making it more affordable.

It also helps show the longevity of Battery Electronic Vehicles. Though it's only been two years since they stopped producing it, they're still producing not just maintenance parts, but serious upgrades.

Comment: Re:Tree of liberty (Score 1) 355

by Firethorn (#48671169) Attached to: UK Man Arrested Over "Offensive" Tweet

So unless you were planning immolating yourself in front of Buckingham Palace as a protest for your country's policies, the quote is not really appropriate.

That would be an awfully odd place for me to do it, I'd be concerned that my message would be lost by doing it in a foreign country.

As for liberty/tyranny, it's always a balance that has to be constantly fought for. There's plenty of wannabe tyrants in the USA, UK, and pretty much every other country(including actual tyrants).

Comment: Re:Tree of liberty (Score 1) 355

by Firethorn (#48670465) Attached to: UK Man Arrested Over "Offensive" Tweet

Having read your entire post, I'll say that I would have boiled down your post to what Free Censorship did. Well, I wouldn't mention North Korea.

"An attack on their dignity" - Mentioning the color blue is an attack on my dignity, you must never do that. Tying a noose is a reference to lynchings, even when you're a young boy from the north without a clue to that bit in history. Mentioning infidelity is an attack on the dignity of a politician.

Your dignity is a bit like the US 'right to seek happiness'. It doesn't mean that you can't be insulted.

Comment: Tree of liberty (Score 4, Informative) 355

by Firethorn (#48669085) Attached to: UK Man Arrested Over "Offensive" Tweet

Well, as they say, the tree of liberty needs to occasionally be watered with the blood of tyrants and patriots. It appears that their tree is in need of some watering.

Besides that, top gear's Stephen Fry:
“It's now very common to hear people say, 'I'm rather offended by that.' As if that gives them certain rights. It's actually nothing more... than a whine. 'I find that offensive.' It has no meaning; it has no purpose; it has no reason to be respected as a phrase. 'I am offended by that.' Well, so fucking what."

And from Salman Rushdie:
“Nobody has the right to not be offended. That right doesn't exist in any declaration I have ever read.

If you are offended it is your problem, and frankly lots of things offend lots of people.

I can walk into a bookshop and point out a number of books that I find very unattractive in what they say. But it doesn't occur to me to burn the bookshop down. If you don't like a book, read another book. If you start reading a book and you decide you don't like it, nobody is telling you to finish it.

To read a 600-page novel and then say that it has deeply offended you: well, you have done a lot of work to be offended.”

Comment: Re:Interesting (Score 1) 291

by Firethorn (#48664307) Attached to: Hotel Group Asks FCC For Permission To Block Some Outside Wi-Fi

Repeat guests? C'mon, really? You shop for hotels the same way the rest of us do - Either your employer tells you "you will stay here", or you use a price search and pick the lowest place that doesn't mention rats in the toilet.

Short of emergencies, 'free internet' is a requirement I shop for. If it's a working trip, internet would be a *reimbursable* expense for work, thus increasing the effective cost of the hotel, making it effectively more expensive than the one that includes wifi, thus they'll route their people elsewhere.

As for blocking wifi but not cell phones because it pisses customers off, if they put a faraday cage up they could put cellular boosters inside the hotels to transmit those frequencies out.

Of course, the number of personal hotspots that would pop up...

Comment: fork jack/lift (Score 1) 248

by Firethorn (#48652217) Attached to: The Magic of Pallets

Not to bust your imagination, but to build on the idea I figure that the first 'fork lifts' were actually intended to move heavy equipment. Lots of generators and such have cuts in their support platforms to support movement by fork. Now, Initially I figure they moved equipment via crane and such, but moving industrial equipment without dealing with a huge high roof is a lot easier if you can come in from below, to to mention that you need a frame anyways even if you're using a crane - as equipment gets heavier the less likely any random point you might hook into will be able to support the equipment without damage. You just need less framing if you're doing it via clever cuts in the floor stand.

Go back to the 'old days' on non-standardization, I can see a company that uses heavy equipment having some device, a sort of proto-jack, to move their equipment around, then deciding, hey, we can use this jack to help move supplies around! Perhaps with something more expensive/better built than modern pallets, which are built to be cheap.

Comment: Re:What are the implications for the textbook mark (Score 1) 170

by Firethorn (#48641529) Attached to: Calculus Textbook Author James Stewart Has Died

Since I don't know your specific situation, I could be completely misinterpreting what you mean. But it seems you have 0% "figure out the problem".

Yeah, you're off. Really, my solve rate was darn near 100%, but I hit the occasional spot where I was asking 'what the hell are they looking for me to produce?' - and the answer wasn't in the book.

I wasn't counting the problems where I already knew what to do, or could figure it out without outside assistance. That's practice, not learning. Of my learning, IE learning the symbols, the properties of various constants and such, the execution of various rules*, that was done as I said - mostly NOT using the book.

*Not enough time in the tests to re-derive them, had to memorize

Like I said, I could be completely misreading your situation, but from what you wrote, it sounds like if there isn't a template for how to solve every single problem type that you give up.

I'd hardly call what I did 'giving up'. I would work a problem until I not only had it solved, but I understood the solving method. It must of worked, seeing as how I pulled an A in a class where 90% of my grade was from closed book tests.

Comment: Re:$32 million of greed. (Score 1) 170

by Firethorn (#48640169) Attached to: Calculus Textbook Author James Stewart Has Died

Can you self-publish and get any respect from college book departments? Professors might be fairly easy, but getting the okay from your department to use a non-certified publisher/reviewed book might be difficult. Can you sell enough in order to justify printing sufficient quantities such that printing costs alone don't swamp most of the price difference?

It's not easy. Especially if he was under contract with the publisher for it and they pulled some shenanigans in order to raise the price.

That being said, I'd love to pull in some charity minded professionals to write and deliberately open source sets of textbooks.

Comment: Re:What are the implications for the textbook mark (Score 2) 170

by Firethorn (#48640155) Attached to: Calculus Textbook Author James Stewart Has Died

It's pissing me and the students off because they really do need to have a text.

How long is this going to be true with resources like Khan Academy, Purple math, and everything else out there?

I am currently pissed at my calculus text(Larson/Edwards 5thEd ETC). While I read the chapters, more than half the book is actually just problems to work out, and worse, the methods to solve said problems are often not in the text. So I'd place my actual learning at about 10% textbook(and I'm being generous), 30% lecture, 20% math tutoring/TA help, 40% internet.

When the teacher is assigning roughly 1/10th of the problems as homework in a manner that often resembles 'this looks good, I like this one', etc... It should be trivial for him to do up said problems on a handout. Well, I'd recommend he make the problems up himself, but you should get the point.

Comment: Re:Yeah, about that Constitution Thing (Score 1) 482

by Firethorn (#48637119) Attached to: Colorado Sued By Neighboring States Over Legal Pot

Also, Colorado should (if they don't already) have laws preventing the export of marijuana to other states where it is illegal. Want to grow for distribution in Colorado? Fine. Want to grow in the safety of Colorado to go profiteer in Nebraska? Jail.

I'm not a lawyer, but I think that would actually be illegal under the constitution. The states aren't allowed to get into trade wars with each other with prohibitions, taxes, duties, and such.

Yes, I know in this case that Nebraska doesn't want the stuff, but it's free to pass a general prohibition, it's not allowed to ban only weed from Colorado. Colorado isn't allowed to ban weed to Nebraska.

Comment: Re:Dry Counties? (Score 1) 482

by Firethorn (#48636987) Attached to: Colorado Sued By Neighboring States Over Legal Pot

I think the difference here is that marijuana is illegal under federal law. It is not a law the states created, and so they are complaining about the disproportionate burden placed on them.

There's a really simple solution here: Do basically what Colorado did, and tell the feds that if they want to prohibit weed they can do it themselves.

Comment: Re:Dry Counties? (Score 1) 482

by Firethorn (#48636931) Attached to: Colorado Sued By Neighboring States Over Legal Pot

but in practice, prohibitions against alcohol work just as well as prohibitions against pot - ie, not at all.

You want 'effective' dry counties, look towards Alaska. There are places that are pretty much only accessible by plane, and they have officers there that are almost like customs. They still get alcohol in there, but it's at a lot lower rate.

Down south, the only reason most counties are still 'dry' is a combination of:
1. Cronyism - the politicians are relatives/part owners of the alcohol stores located just outside of their jurisdiction
2. Temperance types - MAD types that are against any alcohol
3. NIMBY types - they're convinced that any change would be bad and that a liquor store would set up right next to them and draw drunks from counties over to their door step(despite the fact that the only reason they see lots of drunks at the store the next county over is all the people migrating from their county PLUS the drunks in the county the store is located in).

Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and he'll invite himself over for dinner. - Calvin Keegan