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Comment: rape is *the* lowest category of violent crime (Score 3, Insightful) 382

by SuperBanana (#46721853) Attached to: UN Report Reveals Odds of Being Murdered Country By Country

A women may be less likely to be murdered but more likely to be raped.

That's mostly because the FBI doesn't consider prison rape to be a crime; I think the estimates I hear are typically around 200,000-300,000 male prison rape victims a year, which comes close to making the rape stats 50/50. There's also very little interest in figuring out the underreporting rate for male rape victims in open society; hell, in many places it isn't even a crime for a woman to rape a man because of the way rape was defined.

But even if you ignore all that: I'll take those odds. Rape has the lowest occurrence rate in the US of any violent crime, and not only that, it's declined the most over the last decade or two as well. Men are several times more likely to be KILLED. Last time I checked, that was worse.

By the way: case clearance rates for female homicide victims are higher than for male homicide victims.

You can either listen to the gender issues folks, who make it sound like violence against women is a HUGE CRISIS, or you can read the BJS statistics. Women have been, and continue to be, a protected class in the US.

Comment: a fact not mentioned: women kill more men, too (Score 3, Interesting) 382

by SuperBanana (#46721793) Attached to: UN Report Reveals Odds of Being Murdered Country By Country

At least in the US, women kill more men than women.

Also, while gender issues folks are more than happy to do all sorts of mental gymnastics for other things: nobody is willing to touch "why do men commit robbery more?" with a ten foot pole because then they'd have to admit that traditional gender roles for men are still very much in place, men are judged heavily by their economic status, and men are committing crime by and large to house, feed, and clothe their families.

Lots of assistance for single mothers out there, like WIC. Single dads? Shit outta luck.

Guess what percentage of the US homeless population is male? Depending on the area, anywhere from 67% to 80% (NYC, for example, is 82%.) Oh, and the percentage of women in homeless shelters is higher than the percentage of homeless women total, showing women are better served.

Male privilege, my ass.

Comment: priuses do make noise (Score 1) 544

by SuperBanana (#46653559) Attached to: 60 Minutes Dubbed Engines Noise Over Tesla Model S

You know that noise you hear from Priuses that sounds like an electrical buzzing/whirring?

The car's drivetrain doesn't make that noise. That's artificial noise, designed specifically to warn pedestrians when the engine is inactive. I was surprised the first time I drove a Prius, because you can't hear that noise from inside the car. I'd assumed it would be louder.

The person text-walking is completely at fault. How stupid can you be to text-walk in a parking lot?

Comment: Left foot braking, not heel and toe (Score 1) 394

by SuperBanana (#46570983) Attached to: Is the Tesla Model S Pedal Placement A Safety Hazard?

Heel and toe is a technique for blipping the gas pedal with the RIGHT foot while using the left foot to actuate the clutch, in order to have a smoother downshift by raising engine revs for the new lower gear.

Left foot braking was pioneered by Walter Rohl driving the turbocharged Audi rally cars. It's pointless in non-turbocharged cars, and completely pointless in an electric car.

This guy? It's a combination of elderly driver (notice most causes of "unintended" acceleration involve elderly drivers) and inappropriate footwear. Living in a northeast state, I can tell you that I learned my first winter as a driver (when I was 16-17) that boots were different from shoes when driving. This idiot is 65 and apparently just figured it out after almost 50 years of driving? Bullshit. This was just a bunch of sensationalist muckraking, complete with the scary stock photos of an "automobile crash."

Should the pedal spacing match other cars? Yes. Should the Tesla lock out acceleration when the brake pedal is pushed? Yes - most throttle-by-wire cars do this (and you can probably expect a software update soon, I'm guessing, though such a sensitive bit of code needs to be fully validated.) Was it the car's fault that he supposedly almost crashed? Nope.

Comment: chances of controlled water landing are slim (Score 2) 491

by SuperBanana (#46565613) Attached to: How Satellite Company Inmarsat Tracked Down MH370

It's virtually impossible to land a large plane in the water "safely"; if either wing or engine touches the water before the other, that side digs in and the plane cartwheels, ripping itself to shreds.

The hudson plane landing wasn't a miracle because of skill on the part of the pilot - it was a miracle because it was astronomically slim odds that the plane would continue in a straight line and remain intact.

Comment: Flitetest show about quadcopter is far better (Score 3, Interesting) 33

by SuperBanana (#46519395) Attached to: Fly an Aerobatic Quadcopter with Curtis Youngblood (Video)

Try this youtube video of Curtis visting the guys at Flitetest for a really great look at how it works, flying it, etc. from some guys who really know their RC stuff:

Flitetest is pretty awesome, by the way; I stumbled across their channel a couple of months ago and have been quite entertained. They're the closest thing I can think of to "Top Gear, only with remote control things that fly."

And I do mean "things" that fly; they routinely have a "can we make ___ fly?" episodes. I think I recall one challenge involved getting a cinderblock into the air.

Comment: environmental standards of 50 years ago (Score 1) 405

by SuperBanana (#46510373) Attached to: Paris Bans Half of All Cars On the Road

Smog and levels of particulate matter in large cities are generally a lot lower compared to before the 60s, when a lot of people still heated their houses with coal fires.

Surprisingly, standards for environmental conditions have improved in the last 50 years, particularly given the voluminous amount of evidence on how pollution negatively impacts public health, infrastructure, and nature.

Comment: So it seemed simple at first... (Score 0) 358

by SuperBanana (#46486599) Attached to: EU Votes For Universal Phone Charger

Seemed simple at first. Everyone can just go with micro USB, right?

Then I realized that batteries are getting bigger (and able to handle faster charge rates), and it's way, way past due for cell phones to start supporting USB3.

So can they make two standards, USB2 micro and USB3 micro?

Also, here's the original EU press release:

I don't see any mention of a specific standard...?

Comment: combustion engines: demonstrated unreliability (Score 3) 330

by SuperBanana (#46478691) Attached to: What If the Next Presidential Limo Was a Tesla?

Tesla can certainly bring it, but the internal combustion engine has over a century of demonstrated reliability.

Keeping in mind that electric cars have been around longer than gasoline cars, and than electric motors are used in the powertrain of every modern locomotive in the united states (and are the prime movers for almost any industrial plant)...not really, actually.

Car engines need a lot of maintenance due to all their sensors, electromechanical and mechanical valves, mazes of hoses and wiring (all of which has to deal with high temperatures), dependence on multiple fluid types (the fuel, the coolant, the lubricant) and need for so much cooling (gasoline engines waste 3/4 of their fuel on heat.) One of the reasons Tesla is getting away with not having dealers is that the cars are so much simpler drivetrain-wise. I imagine the only fluids that need changing are the brake fluid and probably the gearbox oil.

An electric car for the presidential limo would be brilliant, particularly since it typically doesn't need to travel very far most of the time, and an electric vehicle provides massive torque for handling the heft of all that chassis and armor. Adapting an electric drivetrain, in part because of how simple it is and how flexible one can be with component locations, would actually make it far easier on the coach builder. Tesla already has a dual-motor AWD drivetrain, so they've definitely got the oomph (although I suspect the dual-motor drivetrain motors are individually smaller.)

Comment: not nearly as problematic as our defense spending (Score 1) 676

by SuperBanana (#46458159) Attached to: 70% of U.S. Government Spending Is Writing Checks To Individuals

In 2009, we were responsible for 40% of worldwide arms sales.

In 2012, we spend 18% of our budget on "defense", 7 times more than China.

Now consider that our "defense" department has been repeatedly found by the GAO to be unauditable because their accounting is so incompetent.

Also, I find it laughable that so many republicans are concerned about 'welfare' and 'entitlement' yet happily sign on for farm subsidy bills that cost trillions, to keep the votes from fat-ass, lazy, uneducated, corn-fed, bigoted midwesterners rollin' right in.

One good suit is worth a thousand resumes.