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Comment: LOL (Score 2, Interesting) 490

by Tailhook (#47710079) Attached to: Solar Plant Sets Birds On Fire As They Fly Overhead

This has been going on for months and months. I wondered how long it would take Slashdot to finally surface it.

This is Brightsource in Mohave. Feinstein et. al. held it up for years to protect turtles that were supposedly endangered.

Now it's frying birds. Certain species could be wiped out because they happen to inhabit the area.

This is the no. 1 best contemporary example of exactly why renewables will never displace more than a trivially small fraction of electric supply in the Western world; land use and its effects on ecology. Every form of wind or solar consume vast amounts of land, permanently altering the ecology of the region. Whether it's the "wind farm [that] imperils rare grass" (no, really — rare grass) or desert birds igniting in mid-air, the same greens that demand renewables will insure its failure.

Windandsolar is a pipe dream.

Hey, mdsolar ... you there man? Why you want to kill all the birds man? Quick! Go find a scary Fukushima leak story and post it!

Go ahead, pick "troll" or whatever. I have karma for the ages.

Comment: Basis? (Score 1) 468

by Tailhook (#47706047) Attached to: Google's Driverless Cars Capable of Exceeding Speed Limit

From the story:

Research shows that sticking to the speed limit when other cars are going much faster actually can be dangerous, Dolgov says, so its autonomous car can go up to 10 mph (16 kph) above the speed limit when traffic conditions warrant.

Anyone know what "research" Dolgov is referring to? It's always been self evident to me that a car travelling slower than the flow of speeding traffic is a danger, but actual evidence would be nice.

Not that it matters. We don't really prioritize safety. We pay lip service to safety and then pursue other agenda. If safety was our first priority small cars wouldn't be allowed on roads; mortality and injury severity is substantially higher for light vehicles. And no, it's not because SUVs are slaughtering Prius owners. It's physics; all else being equal a small, light vehicle will more often kill or more severely injure you in a crash.

Comment: Munich Schmunich (Score 4, Insightful) 570

by Tailhook (#47699521) Attached to: Munich Reverses Course, May Ditch Linux For Microsoft

Please, stop posting blather about Munich adopting Linux. This drama has been going on for years and years and I'm tired of it. There are stories going back past 2004; "City of Munich Freezes Its Linux Migration", "Munich to Go Ahead with Linux After All", blah blah blah.

Munich uses Linux to pressure Microsoft for better deals, which is just fine, but not interesting to me or most of the rest of us I imagine. Linux is not some struggling underdog begging for attention. So much computing today is Linux, from super computers to $90 smartphones, set tops, huge cloud infrastructures, corporate data centers, weapons systems, etc. — what Munich's government clerks happen to use to print emails or whatever just doesn't matter anymore, if it ever did, and I don't care either way.

+ - Solar plant scorches birds in mid air-> 4

Submitted by Obscene_CNN
Obscene_CNN (3652201) writes "The new solar energy plant that is owned by Google and two energy companies is killing birds in mid air. The plant which works by concentrating the suns rays is killing and igniting the birds as they fall out of the sky. BrightSource Energy, NRG Solar, and Google say they are studying methods of reducing the bird deaths."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Just red tape? (Score 3, Informative) 140

by Tailhook (#47685955) Attached to: Delays For SC Nuclear Plant Put Pressure On the Industry

The links provided in the story are the usual, information free sort one expects from mdsolar as he plies his anti-nook trade around Slashdot. There are better news stories written about this and the bottom line is a subcontractor is falling behind making "submodules." This story from yesterday points the finger at Chicago Bridge & Iron in Louisiana, and this story actually provides a little detail about the submodules that CB&I are trying to make. The builders are moving some of this work to other facilities and contractors because of CB&I failures. Another story a year ago also names CB&I as the culprit for delays.

So it's a manufacturing problem and not a regulator hold up. Manufacturing problems are solvable (we've built stuff like this many times) and not as appealing to mdsolar as a nasty regulatory tangle, so he deliberately avoided stories with specifics.

Comment: Re:100 percent bullshit (Score 1) 199

by Tailhook (#47681799) Attached to: Involuntary Eye Movement May Provide Definitive Diagnosis of ADHD

What do you propose we do for kids who do not fit the standard model and are therefore thrown to the wolves without pharmaceutical help?

Does your question have as a premise that all those treated are supposed to be treated? I think it does and I don't believe that, so I wont address your question. I believe most shouldn't be treated because their behavior isn't wrong; it just fails to fit well into a badly distorted culture. So if you accept my premise of widespread over medication we're left with these alternatives; stop the abuse of drugs and let the wolves, as you say, have them or continue this sick spiral of pseudoscience and physco-engineering until we have secured our Stepford future.

There was an important word used above; "most." Most being "treated" today shouldn't. That means "some" should. Some, however, should not mean little Johnny spends his teens and early adulthood on medical grade speed because he got in a fist fight at eight and the libtard, kumbaya world view that runs everything involving children can't tolerate it.

Comment: La la land (Score 2, Insightful) 97

by Tailhook (#47680863) Attached to: How California's Carbon Market Actually Works

CA makes fantasy laws that have to be papered over when the dates arrive. News at 11.

The ZEV (zero emissions vehicles) mandates they've been backpedaling on for twenty years are another fine example. Physics and CA voters frequently do not agree on reality. When that happens physics wins. Every time.

Comment: Re:100 percent bullshit (Score 2, Insightful) 199

by Tailhook (#47680331) Attached to: Involuntary Eye Movement May Provide Definitive Diagnosis of ADHD

He was right except for the part about "interactions with technology." We've built up some sort of model kid and heavily medicate those that fail to follow the model closely. That model kid happens to be highly risk adverse, entirely compatible with quiet suburban life and profoundly concerned with the sensitivities of its elders, their jet set lifestyles and half dozen credit lines. It's got little to do with stimulating boxes and everything to do with shoehorning kids into compliant slots in their parents world.

His skepticism of this supposed new diagnostic method is spot on. This is pseudo-science used to rationalize drugging people that don't fit the model, employ vast numbers of highly paid specialists and sink wealth into "health care."

+ - The flight of gifted engineers from NASA

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 (797399) writes "Rather than work in NASA, the best young engineers today are increasingly heading to get jobs at private companies like SpaceX and XCOR.

It is a long article, worth reading in its entirety, but this quote will give the essence:

As a NASA engineering co-op student at Johnson Space Center, Hoffman trained in various divisions of the federal space agency to sign on eventually as a civil servant. She graduated from college this year after receiving a generous offer from NASA, doubly prestigious considering the substantial reductions in force hitting Johnson Space Center in recent months. She did have every intention of joining that force — had actually accepted the offer, in fact — when she received an invitation to visit a friend at his new job with rising commercial launch company SpaceX.

Hoffman took him up on the offer, flying out to Los Angeles in the spring for a private tour. Driving up to the SpaceX headquarters, she was struck by how unassuming it was, how small compared to NASA, how plain on the outside and rather like a warehouse.

As she walked through the complex, she was also surprised to find open work areas where NASA would have had endless hallways, offices and desks. Hoffman described SpaceX as resembling a giant workshop, a hive of activity in which employees stood working on nitty-gritty mechanical and electrical engineering. Everything in the shop was bound for space or was related to space. No one sat around talking to friends in the morning, “another level from what you see at NASA,” she said. “They’re very purpose-driven. It looked like every project was getting the attention it deserved.”

Seeing SpaceX in production forced Hoffman to acknowledge NASA might not be the best fit for her. The tour reminded her of the many mentors who had gone into the commercial sector of the space industry in search of better pay and more say in the direction their employers take. She thought back to the attrition she saw firsthand at Johnson Space Center and how understaffed divisions struggled to maintain operations.

At NASA young engineers find that they spend a lot of time with bureaucracy, the pace is slow, their projects often get canceled or delayed, and the creative job satisfaction is poor. At private companies like SpaceX, things are getting built now. With that choice, no wonder the decision to go private is increasingly easy."

+ - World's Fastest Camera Captures 4.4 TRILLION Frames Per Second->

Submitted by Diggester
Diggester (2492316) writes "The race for faster and more furious just got big in the imaging and photography department. Japanese researchers have recently designed a motion picture camera which is capable of capturing 4.4 trillion frames per second. That’s right; it makes this snapper the fastest the world over. This technique that is known to be STAMP (sequentially timed all-optical mapping photography) is able to boast 450×450 pixels. The work by the Japanese researchers has been so popular that the Nature Photonics has published it."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Is the complexity of C++ a practical joke? (Score 2) 425

by Tailhook (#47672633) Attached to: Interviews: Ask Bjarne Stroustrup About Programming and C++

C# pioneered lambda's.

Ridicule of this has not been sufficient.

Your geek cred has been zeroed. Please turn in your membership card and leave the premises.

Before you go, please note that JavaScript, almost 10 years older than C#, has had lambdas from day one, and I don't believe any other language that has done more to expose the common programmer to lambdas. Eich took some if his design inspiration from Scheme, in which lambdas are central. Scheme, a LISP dialect, goes back to the mid seventies, perhaps before you were born.

C# is a fine Microsoft language, but it had nothing to do with pioneering lambda.

And the index you cite is a laugh. It had Apple's brand new Swift language floating around in the type 10 last month, gone this month. Search engine query frequency is not a terribly meaningful measure. All it means is that those interested in a given language have done a lot of searches, and that fluctuates with events such as press releases.

Over here is a little more comprehensive study of programming language popularity. As you can see, C/C++ give up nothing to C#. Not a damn thing.

+ - Pentagon Supplied Ferguson Police with 'War Zone' Supplies->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "The Pentagon has given the police department hundreds of millions of dollars' worth of surplus military equipment down the years, it has emerged.

The Ferguson Police Department is part of a federal programme known as 1033, which distributes military equipment such as armed vehicles and even grenade launchers to police forces across the US.

The force has been accused of using this equipment during the ongoing unrest in the town of Ferguson following the shooting of Michael Brown."

Link to Original Source

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