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Comment: The Summary Claims Effect is Cause (Score 1) 33

The Aurora Borealis are not "are an electromagnetic phenomena that can adversely affect power grids and communications and navigation systems." They are but an effect of the solar wind, intensified by a solar flare pointed in our direction, interacting with the Earth's magnetic field.

Comment: Re:Aha (Score 2) 212

by Rob Riggs (#49000385) Attached to: The Search For Neutrons That Leak Into Our World From Other Universes
I was pretty young when I first read THGTTG and my vocabulary was still developing. Being an American, I had no idea what a "biro" was at the time. The gist of that section went completely over my head. It wasn't until re-reading that book later in life, with a suitably expanded vocabulary, that the true humor came through. Re-reading those books at that point was like reading them anew.

Comment: Re:Salary versus cost of living in each city (Score 1) 136

by Rob Riggs (#48892973) Attached to: By the Numbers: The Highest-Paying States For Tech Professionals

Cost of living (COL) is one thing... quality of life (QOL) is another. I moved from Colorado to Chicago. I did that because the pay was better and it seemed that the COL was about equivalent based on a number of online COL calculators. What one realizes when one gets here is that the COL for the same QOL is actually quite a bit higher. Now, I feel like I came out ahead, but not as far ahead as I had imagined.

Here's the deal: the COL is based on the average cost of housing, food, energy, transportation, taxes, etc; the stuff that makes up the average household budget. Housing and taxes typically account for the largest factors in COL differences. For Chicago, housing prices includes some real hell-holes, where the likelihood of getting shot is higher than some places in the world we consider war zones. This accounts for a surprisingly large part of the city's south and west sides. Buying a home in a "safe" part of the city is rather expensive, or one lives way out in the suburbs and spends hours and $$$ commuting each day. Overall, the average quality of life for the same income in Chicago is much lower.

So, if you consider moving for money, take into account not just COL but also QOL.

I have yet to see an online COL calculator take both into account. If you know of one, post a link.

+ - The Mystery Of Glenn Seaborg's Missing Plutonium: Solved

Submitted by KentuckyFC
KentuckyFC (1144503) writes "In the early 1940s, Glenn Seaborg made the first lump of plutonium by bombarding uranium-238 with neutrons in two different cyclotrons for over a year, The resulting plutonium, chemically separated and allowed to react with oxygen, weighed 2.77 micrograms. It was the first macroscopic sample ever created and helped win Seaborg a Nobel prize ten years later. The sample was displayed at the Lawrence Hall of Science in Berkeley until the early naughties, when it somehow disappeared. Now nuclear detectives say they've found Seaborg's plutonium and have been able to distinguish it from almost all other plutonium on the planet using a special set of non-destructive tests. The team say sample is now expected to go back on display at Seaborg's old office at Berkeley."

Kiss your keyboard goodbye!