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Comment Re:Batteries just don't store enough energy... (Score 3, Interesting) 339

On the other hand, as the jet fuel is consumed the weight decreases. Batteries stay the same weight for the entire flight.

An interesting point . . . when a jet needs to make an emergency landing with full tanks, it will ditch the fuel before attempting a landing, because of the fire danger. Will this be necessary with Li-Air? Could there be a danger of a fire if the plane needs to land under "extraordinary circumstances? Like, no landing gear?

So will a Li-Air plane need to have a mechanism to ditch the batteries?

And if the batteries land in my backyard, can I keep them . . . ?

Comment Re:Unhelpful Whining (Score 1) 269

Where are the academics at UH and other schools?

They are keeping low lest they come into the sites of the Native Hawaiian groups. UH has some brilliant researchers who do work on marine life and volcanoes. They want to pursue their own research. If they dare to put their fingers into the TMT hornet's nest, they will be hit with lawsuits try to block marine life research, because the marine life has religious meaning ("that fish has the spirit of my great-grandmother in it!"), and lawsuits against volcano research ("that's where my great-grandparents used to toss their virgin daughters into!"

Serious scientific researchers just want to do research. They do not want to deal with protests and lawsuits, that would just distract them from their work.

Comment Re:Sounds familar (Score 1) 269

I seriously that Hawaii would be able to find any investors. Even if the State Legislature approves, the Native Hawaiians will hit it with yet more lawsuits, and the courts will shut it down. After the TMT fiasco, potential investors will decide that it isn't worth the risk.

Anyway Hawaii already has tradition Native Hawaiian inter-island ferry services . . . they are called outrigger canoes. That would give the Native Hawaiian groups enough ammunition to claim that the new services were trying to use modern "white" naval technology to drive the outriggers out of business.

Maybe Über could step in, and offer a service where you could book rides on people's private boats . . . ?

As to the TMT, maybe the groups involved could dig up a Native Hawaiian astronomer who could negotiate between the two sides . . . ?

Comment Re:This was actually the result of a proxy fight. (Score 4, Interesting) 269

Their favorite hobby horses are self-determination and self-governance, for Hawaii as an independent nation, or for people of native Hawaiian ancestry to obtain "tribal sovereignty" similar to the relationship with Native Americans, for Native Hawaiians.

Well, there's the solution right there . . . give the Native Hawaiians the right to build gambling casinos, in exchange for the right to build a telescope.

Comment Re:If it was easy (Score 4, Interesting) 156

Well, the problem is that a lot of politicians don't really understand what programming is all about, and they truly believe that programming is a simple, rudimentary skill. So simple that anyone can do it. All you need is couple of hours of online education, and hell, you can write a telecommunication billing system from scratch. The Obamacare website was the best example of this: the politicians and civil servants did not understand enough to manage the contractors.

Too many of these folks think that programming is like changing a spark plug in your car. All you need is a wrench, your "Tool", and your "Education", clockwise is "in" and counter-clockwise is "out". Presto, you are now a fully qualified Ferrari mechanic!

Hey, I have a Black & Decker drill, and a can of furniture spackle. I can now work as a dentist!

Submission + - Massive Layoffs Hit University of Copenhagen 1

jones_supa writes: University of Copenhagen is cutting deep into its staff to cut operation costs. Even though a great deal of the savings are aimed at administration and service, they are expected to affect the quality of education and research many years ahead. More than 500 teachers, researchers and employees in service and administrative jobs will be leaving. This corresponds to 7% of all staff. 209 employees can anticipate being laid off, while 323 jobs are either discontinued or terminated via voluntary redundancy. In addition to this, the university will have to reduce its PhD intake by 10% in the coming years. This is the outcome of the government's 2016 budget which imposes huge savings on research and education. As you might remember, we just heard about a similar situation in University of Helsinki in Finland.

Submission + - Snowden Leaks Cost Pulitzer Winning Journalist W.H. Security Clearance, Job (

An anonymous reader writes: Pulitzer prize-winning journalist Ashkan Soltani was recently detailed to the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy from a position at the the Federal Trade Commission. Former Google executive and White House chief technology officer Megan Smith extended a warm welcome. His portfolio at the White House included privacy issues, data ethics, and outreach to the technical community, among others. His drug test was complete, and the FBI investigation for his clearance was under way, when the wheels came off. His clearance was denied. Ashkan's move to the White House surprised some when it was announced due to his history. Ashkan had worked at the Washington Post where he helped analyze and safeguard the Snowden NSA document dump. A technologist at the ACLU noted that Ashkan had published many stories that probably irritated US intelligence officials. Government organizations have previously warned government employees to not access classified information made available in the media. Nobody is directly stating this is the reason, but the subtexts seem clear enough. Ashkan intends to leave Washington and head back to the west coast.

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