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Comment: Re:My next car will be an e-Golf. (Score 1) 307 307

There are fewer than 20 fast chargers in America? In the Bay Area, I see about 40 of them (looking at my cell phone app). The local Whole Foods has one, so does the local mall.

Was your family run over by a Golf? I see you making a few other extremely pointed anti-Golf comments, that have no basis in fact. What's the motivation? There are legitimate complaints to make about electric cars, why imagine things?

That said, the idea behind electric charging is more like, you charge it overnight, rather than on the road. Even a fast charge simply isn't fast enough.

Comment: Re:The reason is more simple (Score 1) 307 307

Well, more like $280 a month, with $80 subsidized by the government.

So it's true that if everybody was getting electric cars, the subsidy would be untenable. However, if everybody was getting electric cars, the unit price would go down as well (which is a big part of the motivation behind the subsidies).

Comment: Re:Still waiting (Score 1) 79 79

Even trying to plan everything in advance, it would be incredibly difficult to navigate an unfamiliar city by myself, as I was, with only a paper map and a route drawn on it. I remember on our family vacations driving across the country that we always needed a second person as a navigator, and even then there was often a lot of guesswork and missed turns.

My phone, on the other hand, would verbally direct me, and do so even better than a human navigator could. I would only have to occasionally glance at the phone, most of the time simply listening to the audio cues. If you make a wrong turn, the directions update on the fly to get you to where you need to go. Getting lost is damn near impossible.

This is one example where a smartphone not only replaces an older technology, but is probably an order of magnitude more practical. There's simply no comparison to using paper maps. Being disorganized or not has nothing to do with it... it's actually solved a real-world problem for which paper maps were really only a partial solution. Yeah, I'll still call that "indispensable." Maybe not in a completely literal sense, but close enough for all practical purposes.

Comment: Re:I've seen this movie (Score 1) 14 14

Patching the story is pretty difficult to do, and doesn't really satisfy people anyhow. After the horrible Mass Effect 3 ending, which essentially just shat on everything your character tried to do during the series and gave you an unbelievably bad "choose A, B, or C" ending, I had no desire to go back and replay it after Bioware went back and "fixed" it.

Realistically, it's often impractical to change a story so much that it actually has additional replay value. That's because it's not just changing text in a script, but recording new dialogue, adding or modifying cutscenes, in-game assets, missions, and so on. In many games (the best ones, IMO), the story is an integral part of the game, so it may be difficult to change on its own.

Comment: Re:The reason is more simple (Score 1) 307 307

Yeah, I went from a gas guzzler to the egolf, but even with a decent gas mileage like 30mpg I'd pay $100/month fuel (and that's with gas prices pretty low right now).

I don't do extended trips often. It happens rarely enough that the prices of gas for her car are kind of a non-factor.

So yeah, range is an issue. On the other hand, I do have a fairly long commute, I go out hiking, I have friends all around the Bay Area, and range hasn't been an issue. In an emergency, charging stations are all over. So it's bad, but not as bad as you might think.

Comment: Re:Volt (Score 1) 307 307

Because they're cramped, have poor ergonomics, stupid non-overridable defaults (like it always defaults to 8A charge, and if you want 12A @ 110VAC you HAVE to set it EVERY SINGLE TIME, no way to save the setting), and has pretty poor QC. This is from a coworker I've had over the last 2 years who can't wait for the lease to end and he'll move to something else. Yes, it's saving him some cash over gas, but it's just not worth the hassle.

Comment: Re:I'm retired now (Score 2) 177 177

I don't have anything nearly that bad - my worst only cost me data. A friend taught me (while I was still learning Linux) a trick, how you could play music with dd by outputting the sound to /dev/dsp. But as I said, I was still learning Linux and hadn't quite gotten all of the device names into my head, and I mixed /dev/dsp up with /dev/sda...

Comment: Turns out (Score 1) 307 307

No, t turns out most people don't want an EV to be FUNCTIONALLY DIFFERENT than the cars they know. Plugging it in every night is fine- until the night you forget, or the kids knock the plug out. Then you have no car the next day.

A car, for most people, is not something that you can realistically be only one day away from not having the use of, which there is some risk of with an EV, much greater at any rate than a normal car. That's why hybrids sell OK while real EV cars generally have not.

I'll put a side chiding in for super funky dash boards of some EV cars I've been in that are vastly too large for the space the car has.

Comment: Re:pretty simple really (Score 1, Redundant) 307 307

I leased an egolf, it's like $23k to purchase and just looks like a normal golf, if it didn't say "egolf" you wouldn't know. Fiat 500e is same as a 500. Nissan Leafs don't really look any weirder than other Nissans.

Chademo charging stations aren't free (L2 stations often are, but take longer to charge. Tesla stations are as well).

Bay Area has a million charging stations.

Everything single thing in your post was wrong, why are you talking about something you clearly know nothing about?

Comment: Re:The reason is more simple (Score 4, Informative) 307 307

Electric vehicles are very cheap, if only because the federal government subsidizes $7,500, and the CA state government subsidizes $2500. Additionally, some local governments fund home charging stations.

I leased an egolf for $200/month, versus my old car where I was spending $150/month on fuel. Googling that, leasing a standard golf is the same price, but with the higher fuel/maintenance costs.

There are good reasons not to get an electric car, which basically boil down to range issues - my wife has a normal fuel car, or I wouldn't have even considered an electric car. It's great/cheap as a commuter car, but the (very common) L2 chargers take four hours to fully charge, and even the (uncommon) L3 chargers take an hour. Imagine going on a road trip where every hour and a half you stopped for an hour to charge your car.

United States

Wired Cautions Would-Be Drone Photogs on the 4th 56 56

Last year's spectacular but unauthorized you-are-there video from the inside of a fireworks display has probably inspired quite a few people to try getting their own bird's-eye view this year. Wired cautions photographers, though, that many municipalities have specifically banned (and some will be looking for) unauthorized airborne visitors, and that the FAA's guidelines for legal flight are tricky to comply with during a fireworks show. This is both because it's hard to maintain visual contact with a drone amid the dark and smoke of a show, and because of the altitude at which many commercial firework shells burst. In addition, even if a drone photo mission goes under the radar vis-a-vis local authorities, if resulting footage appears on an ad-supported site, like YouTube, the FAA may be a bit more interested than the pilot would like.

Comment: Re:Sweden's case won't really matter (Score 1) 128 128

There is one thing where the UK would have had a role even if he hadn't fled bail, in that the UK would have been the EAW "sending state". Under an EAW surrender, the sending state has certain rights and responsibilities - for example, if a request comes for extradition to a third party, it has to not only go through the receiving state's judiciary system, but also the sending state's judiciary system; the receiving state can't just hand off someone that they received under an EAW at will. Which is one of the things that makes the whole thing even more ridiculous - Assange had so much faith in Sweden's independence against the UK (such as their ban on extradition for intelligence crimes and 2006 Swedish special forces raids to shut down the US's rendition flights secretly moving through their territory) that he called it his "shield" and was applying for a residence permit there. But suddenly, practically overnight, Sweden transformed into Evil US Lackeys(TM) when he was accused of rape. So then he went to the UK where he talked about his great respect for their independence and impartiality and promised to abide by whatever rulings their judicial system made. Until he ran out of appeals, wherein the UK also turned into Evil US Lackeys(TM). Funny how he felt just fine walking around freely in both of these countries all this time, having only one of the two countries as barriers against US extradition, but adamantly fought the situation that would make them both be barriers to extradition.

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