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Comment: Re:I have said it before (Score 1) 316

by ultranova (#49190735) Attached to: French Nuclear Industry In Turmoil As Manufacturer Buckles

The engineers should have put the brakes to any construction efforts taking place in those locations, based on that fact alone.

They can't. The spirit of the organization employing them does not let them. Their role is to implement the decisions of the leadership and rationalize them. Conforming to their role earns them social capital, and going against costs it. And they can't possibly earn that capital fast enough to pay for keeping a plant blocked for long.

Comment: Re:I have said it before (Score 1) 316

by ultranova (#49189779) Attached to: French Nuclear Industry In Turmoil As Manufacturer Buckles

Coal with CCS is about the same price.

CCS - Carbon Capture and Sequestration? I wonder if you could drive the price down by keeping the carbon dioxide gaseous and feeding it to nearby greenhouses - possibly through a simple pipe. Heck, if you used the greenhouse products as biofuel in the plant you could create a completely closed loop :).

Comment: Re:I have said it before (Score 1) 316

by ultranova (#49189665) Attached to: French Nuclear Industry In Turmoil As Manufacturer Buckles

Which other energy sources?

Ones that will keep my computer running even if it happens to be cloudy and calm and my neighbour decides to use a vacuum cleaner.

Wind, solar PV,

Bit players unless there's a near-miraculous breakthrough in battery technology. At which point solar will require lots of land area and wind will likely have unintended side effects - it's removing energy from the weather system, after all - which means endless rounds of complaints.

solar thermal,

Workable, but requires massive plants. Those are not going to happen - someone will always complain.

wave, tidal,

Lots of promises, few deliveries. And again, these will have massive ecological implications even when working properly.


Unworkable at current drilling technology.


Basically solar power with lots of added inefficiencies. Bonus points for having potential to cause famines if it comes down to feeding the poor or feeding your car.

Comment: Re:Really? Come on now, you should know better. (Score 1) 329

by drinkypoo (#49188287) Attached to: Would You Need a License To Drive a Self-Driving Car?

What I wanted to show by bringing up this example is that in current airplane design, there are circumstances in which automation is known to fail (in this case, unreliable/defective sensors). In these circumstances, the systems are designed to give control back to the pilot. The rationale for this is quite clear.

Yes, like I said, it's to make the passengers feel good. Because as we have seen, the pilots depend on the same sensors that the autopilot does. Airliners aren't fighters, you don't fly by the seat of your pants. By the time your inner-ear-gyro tells you that there's a problem, you're already screwed. Which was precisely what happened.

How in the shit are pitot tubes still icing anyway? Why is heating the tube not a thing which works? Heating elements are not new technology. We should really be able to manage this by now.

Comment: Re:I have said it before (Score 1) 316

by drinkypoo (#49188227) Attached to: French Nuclear Industry In Turmoil As Manufacturer Buckles

you mean the basic engineering error where the project manager wouldn't sign off due to the mistake made in concrete formulation so he was fired and a more lenient approver installed in his place?

How about the basic engineering error of siting a reactor somewhere even ancient Japanese could have told you was a mistake? How about the basic engineering error of not protecting your on-site backup power, which is mandatory for maintenance? How about the basic engineering error of storing spent fuel rods on top of reactors? All of those are more significant than the formulation of the concrete.

Comment: Re:Do pilots still need licenses? (Score 1) 329

by nine-times (#49188199) Attached to: Would You Need a License To Drive a Self-Driving Car?

Do pilots still need licenses in the age of autopilot?

I think there's a big difference in that, if the autopilot encounters a problem it can't deal with, it can't really just stop. I don't know, but I suspect that a lot of a pilot's training isn't just "how to fly a plane" but things like, "how to file a flight plan," or "what FAA regulations do I have to follow?" or "What do I do if something goes wrong." Cars don't need flight plans, the autonomous cars will probably do a better job of following the rules of the roads, and if something goes wrong, the car can just stop itself, with no more negative effect than if a car stalled or someone slammed on the breaks.

Comment: Re:I developed this crap when I hit 35 (Score 1) 48

by drinkypoo (#49188195) Attached to: Ubisoft Has New Video Game Designed To Treat Lazy Eye

My right eye does that when I'm tired, but my eyelid is actually notably different on that side, I've too much of it. My father had both of his eyelids trimmed back by the VA to try to treat his headaches, apparently only one side of my head has this congenital defect. Probably have it trimmed up next time I go out of the country.

Comment: Re:Define 'desktop' ... (Score 1) 398

XP was supported for a very very long time.

Microsoft is not about to make that same mistake again.

MY PC is built from sabertooth Asus series with solid caps, capicators, vrm, etc. Same with gtx 770 video card. It will last 10 years :-)

Irrelevant. We're talking about the software. My motherboard also has solid caps. Whoop de doo.

Sure Intel will try to sabatoge atom with no SOC drivers so they can cut back on support costs and keep prices low

You mean like AMD did with the Mobile Athlon 64, and R690M chipset? It's disingenuous to call out Intel here.

Many of us will stick with 7 even more so than with XP during the last time.

No you won't, because Microsoft won't keep supporting it into eternity. They had to do that because they wrote long contracts. They won't have done that with Windows 7. XP was a stone around their necks.

Comment: Re:Once again on the 3d printing bandwagon. (Score 2) 57

by Rei (#49188067) Attached to: Inside the Weird World of 3D Printed Body Parts

1. Alibaba.com. You can get anything there.
2. Semipermanent subplate attached to the table with pin slots, surgical grade titanium plate pinned into position, pancreas stock welded into place with TIG set to the settings for pancreas stock of appropriate thickness (what can't you weld with TIG?)
3. We find the mechanical properties of billet pancreas to be sufficient, and the higher precision and better finish reduce the odds of customer rejection.

Comment: Re:I have said it before (Score 2) 316

by Rei (#49187531) Attached to: French Nuclear Industry In Turmoil As Manufacturer Buckles

All of Areva's renewables investments combined are less than 10% of their business. And they're performing far better than their core nuclear business. I find it amazing that you argue that they shouldn't have invested in the few projects they're involved in that are actually paying off.

Parts that positively cannot be assembled in improper order will be.