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Comment: Re:$68 Billion for high speed trains (Score 1) 599 599

>Instead of spending $68 Billion on a single high speed rail line between 2 cities that are already linked by several adequate transportation options, maybe we should use a fraction of that money for water projects?

We passed a $45B water bond last year, but about 90% of it is going to be wasted, it seems.

Comment: Re:outrageous (Score 1, Informative) 363 363

>Since the decriminalisation in 2001 drug usage has actually dropped in Portugal.

For some values of "dropped".

From Wikipedia, since decriminalization: "Reported lifetime use of "all illicit drugs" increased from 7.8% to 12%, lifetime use of cannabis increased from 7.6% to 11.7%, cocaine use more than doubled, from 0.9% to 1.9%, ecstasy nearly doubled from 0.7% to 1.3%, and heroin increased from 0.7% to 1.1%"

Comment: Re:AT&T Autopay - Ha! (Score 2) 234 234

When I moved into a new house, there was a problem with my landline, and it was randomly dialing numbers. Constantly. We had the police show up randomly a couple times as it dialed 911 for us, and I once got a bill for a couple thousand dollars.

They eventually got around to waiving the fees and repairing the problem with the line, but my handiman almost got arrested when the police showed up and found a guy on a ladder drilling a hole through a wall.

Comment: Re:Help me out here a little... (Score 1) 533 533

>Power meters don't have to be designed to measure current both ways.

If you have solar, you will have a meter that spins both ways. That's sort of exactly the entire point of having a grid-tied solar system - to run the meter backwards during peak hours, to reduce your kwh consumption.

Most modern power companies will do even better. My system has a smart meter that reports power consumption/generation wirelessly to PG&E on a continuous basis. They know exactly how much I'm producing, and I know they know since I can access it from their web site.

> Just because someone makes something does not mean it's compatible with the grid. If someone hacks together some random garage equipment (and not some government certified power controller box) and plugs it into the grid, that grid is now touching everyone else's house nearby.

Which is why they inspect and approve only certain equipment that has been demonstrated to be compatible with their grid.

>What I am saying is it should be very clear what the requirements of the grid are

It is.

While your objections would be perfectly valid for a solar system going up in Somalia, these issues have actually been address for a long ass time around here.

Comment: Re:Help me out here a little... (Score 1) 533 533

> As the amount of electricity you draw from their generators goes down, they're going to reach the point of needing to charge you a flat fee just for the connection to the power lines, plus the usual fees for actually using their electricity.

We already do. PG&E charges $10-$15 a month for a "grid maintenance fee" for solar users. So even if you are net-zero, you still pay them to keep the grid maintained.

Which is reasonable - if you look at their maintenance costs and divide by the number of users, it's in this ballpark.

The trouble is that PG&E is flat-out lying that solar customers are "free loading" on their grid, and want to raise these flat rates. An uncritical local newspaper ran their drek basically word for word without fact checking any of it. So I wrote (and got published) a correction, but it's still indicative of how shady the power companies are acting in this area.

Comment: Re:Too early for criticism. (Score 1) 238 238

>New York's job count is at an all-time high.

Depends how you look at the numbers.

I see New York finally recovered from 2008 after 7 long years of failure.

I see New York's growth (1.7%) lagging significantly behind the national average (2.4%) in the very reference you linked to.

I see New York as a top state that people are fleeing from (http://www.forbes.com/sites/susanadams/2014/02/10/the-states-people-are-fleeing-in-2014/)

Comment: Re:Too early for criticism. (Score 3, Insightful) 238 238

Well, it's two things, really.

1) Yeah, they want to get a tech nucleus thing going (which does actually work in some places, if done right) and are going about it in a really awkward fashion

2) They realize that the absurdly high taxes in New York are driving businesses away, and so they're giving a temporary tax break to out of town corporations to move in. The trouble is, the turkeys can see the farmer with the shotgun at the end of the line, and aren't buying it. Who would want to grow a business when you know you'll be taxed heavily after becoming successful? You might as well live here in the People's Republic of California where the weather is nicer.

Comment: Re:20 years (Score 1) 74 74

>The point is, it's a chip company, not a supercomputer company, that got the contract. All of your examples are of computer companies (IBM, Cray, Digital, etc.) getting the contract. In this case it's a chip company (Intel) that doesn't usually build the actual computers.

Re-read my list. Intel built one of the ASCI Machines. IBM is also a chip manufacturer (they did, in fact, create the chips for some of their supercomputers). Cray and Digital were also chip makers, though IIRC Cray was out of the business at this point in time.

Comment: 20 years (Score 4, Informative) 74 74

>>For the first time in over twenty years of supercomputing history, a chipmaker [Intel] has been awarded the contract to build a leading-edge national computing resource.

That's bullshit. Multiple supercomputers were built for nuclear security that were constructed after 1995.

I worked at the San Diego Super Computer Center during this time period, and could get access to them to run computations occasionally. Kinda neat.

ASCI Red (1.3 teraflops) was built by Intel in 1997 at Sandia, upgraded to 2.4tf in 1999:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A...

ASCI Blue Pacific (3.9 teraflops) was built by IBM in 1998 at LLNL:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A...

ASCI Blue Mountain (3.1 teraflops) was built by SGI in 1998 at Los Alamos:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A...

ASCI Q (7.7 teraflops) replaced it in 2003:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A...

ASCI White (12 teraflops) was an IBM box built in 2001 at LLNL:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A...

ASCI Purple / ASC Purple (100 teraflops) replaced it in 2005:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A...

Red Storm (36 teraflops in 2005, 101 teraflops in 2006, 204 teraflops in 2008) was built by Cray at Sandia in 2005:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/R...

Blue Gene (which are a whole line of supercomputers since the 90s continuing to the present day) have been built in different places, including Argonne and have hit 17 pflops and hold half the top10 list of supercomputers:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/B...

I did some of my Master's thesis on the SDSC Blue Gene supercomputer. Good times.

But yeah, anyway, the article is factually wrong.

You will have many recoverable tape errors.

Working...