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Comment: Re: Land of the fee (Score 1) 656

by Technician (#47399815) Attached to: TSA Prohibits Taking Discharged Electronic Devices Onto Planes

I second that on the courts. I had to drop off a document for a child case. I stopped at the metal detector and told security I was here to drop of a document, not visit offices, so I had not emptied my pockets. Please call the office of ... to come pick up the document. They objected. I said they can scan the manilla envelope. They complied. I made it clear I had no intention of wasting time for a drop off. It would be much faster for them to step out of the office and accept the delivery.

Comment: Re:$15 LED 3 years ago, haven't bought any since (Score 1) 196

by Technician (#47372857) Attached to: The lightbulb I've most recently acquired ...

I've had mixed results with LED bulbs. They fall into 3 catagories.

1 Poor lumen maintenance.
They dim over time by a large amount. Most often seen in Christmas Lights. My daughter took a string of blue LED's and used them as a nightlight in her room. about 1/2 were totally dead in 6 months. The remainer were all over the map in brighness, but all were much dimmer compaired to a string stored for Christmas used for comparison. Failure rate of decreased brightness by 1/2 percieved brightness in 6 months is 100%. A couple of other low wattage night light bulbs in bathrooms did the same.

2 Infant Mortality
I have had an infant mortality rate on LED bulbs slightly higher than with CFL's. Both are higher failures than traditional name brand incandesceant.

3 Perform well.
Recently I have had more bulbs in this catagory from the name brands. Cheap import bulbs still suffer from the above two. To save energy where the energy cost is the highest, I have them in my Motorhome. To save bulbs where short cycling kill the other types, I have them in bathrooms and utility rooms. With some name brand bulbs, they are slowly creeping into the living areas that have lights on for long periods of time where failures were common. I always write the date installed on the bulbs I use to keep track of their life.

Comment: Re:Most qualified and motivated candidates? (Score 3, Interesting) 435

by Technician (#47262439) Attached to: Yahoo's Diversity Record Is Almost As Bad As Google's

Having been a victim of Affirmitive Action by the US Government, I have seen this first hand.

In the 1980's, there were 2 parts to the BPA (Bonniville Power Administration) apprenticeship program.

1 Testing. Skills, aptitude, physical, etc. Normal scoring
2 Score adjustment on Protected Status. Counts for almost 30%

In the 1980's, Millitary service was not a score booster. Scored top in #1. Scored 4th after step 2. Did not apply for any other government position due to chilling effects.

Private industry scores on just #1 unless forced by government pressure for tax breaks or other reasons. Lately there has been lots of pressure by the US Government to "Make it Right"

Due to my Race, Religiion, Gender, Sexual Orientation, & Age, I have a poor chance. Only recently Vetran status is the bright spot on my Resume. With the recent issues with BPA HR, I would have a chance at getting hired if in addition to Vetran status, I was a protected minority, femaie, gay, muslum, etc. In the meantime, I'm in the majority with slimming chances at economic recovery.

Comment: Re:What the 500 Watts draw rating means (Score 5, Informative) 394

by Technician (#47254743) Attached to: Cable Boxes Are the 2nd Biggest Energy Users In Many Homes

Most of the boxes that have a 500 Watt listing on the box is the maximum combined power of the box with a television plugged into it. Those boxes generally go into standby when the TV is turned off.

This is the same way Light Dimmers are rated. A 600 Watt dimmer does not consume 600 Watts, but can handle a 600 Watt chandilier with 6 100 Watt bulbs.

Check the back of the box. Does it include a place to plug in the TV?

Comment: Re:My experience driving a Prius (Score 1) 377

by Technician (#47252271) Attached to: Are US Hybrid Sales Peaking Already?

I second the stuck in traffic milage. Unless heat prevents it, turn off the AC, and rolld down windows. It will literally idle for an entire weekend.

I know this because I put an inverter in mine and used it during an ice storm to power the fridge, TV, some lights, and the blower on the fireplace insert. The entire weekend used about 1/4 tank of gas.

Prius owners are not the ones running out of gas on the freeway in a backup, unless they run the AC.

Comment: Re:I can't buy one (Score 2) 377

by Technician (#47252229) Attached to: Are US Hybrid Sales Peaking Already?

My 2002 had a pack replaced last fall at 170,000 miles. Two weeks later, a semi changed lanes into it. I kept the new battery and put it into a 2003 with 135,000 miles on it. Fully expect to get another 170K on it.

What impressed me most was the reliability. At 170K miles the car still had over 50% of the original brake pads, all the original bulbs still work, etc. Changed the plugs at 120K Miles. Changed the 12 V battery 3 times. and regular oil and tire changes. Nothing broke on it in normal wear and tear.

Never had a car with that longevity before.

Saved on the Hybrid battery replacement by purchasing a new one online and changing it my self. Plenty of info online on chainging it, complete with safety info. If you change batteries in a 3-50KW UPS, you should have no problem changing out the pack.

Comment: Re:Drum machines... (Score 1) 121

In the live performance world, live performers is the norm. On the other hand, drum machines have pretty much been replaced by MIDI sequencers, so the drum track is CH 10 of the 16 channel MIDI specification for General MIDI. MIDI is quite common in recording. The insturments can be repeated perfectly every time while he vocals can do as many takes as required to get their part right. Sequenced music is common in soundtracks and many small artists recordings. For good insturment sounds, the MIDI is often fed to a sequencer by either 5 pin MIDI, or USB. Most good keyboards and digital drum sets include MIDI and/or USB connections for use with a sequencer, sound module, or other use. Using sound fonts (insturment sounds) in your software synthesizer, you can do most of the recording on a PC with a very good library of sampled insturment sounds.

I have seen bands using a laptop with a keyboard or digital drum set to add to the library of sounds beyond the built in sound fonts.

Comment: Re:Forget spectrum analyzer - there is no decent (Score 1) 172

by Technician (#47227313) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: PC-Based Oscilloscopes On a Microbudget?

If you are a student and working in the analog range, there are some great software audio RTA spectrum analizers out there. With an aftermarket analog interface, 16 bit stereo 96KHZ sample rates are supported for low quanitization error and allising at the high end.

My super cheap interface cost me $15, supports 16 bit stereo for wide dynamic range (lower noise floor by far over my internal sound card) and 44.1 or 48KHZ sample rates. With free Audacity to generate sweep tones, and JAPA RTA software, I can sweep filters, phase lock loop filters, speakers, rooms, etc for well within budget. With cheap, but up to spec sound interfaces, they can be used for student and semi pro work.

Not a slashvertisement, but the innexpensive interface I am using is one of the Behringer U-Control series. With Audacity as my function generator for Sine, Triangle, Square, or sawtooth, I can sweep linear or log over any reasonable audio frequency range I need. With JAPA on Linux patched with Jack, and input from the interface, I have over 100 DB of dynamic range on most frequencies in the 20-20K range. Any cheap 8 bit scope card simply does not have the resolution for this. Use what works best, even if it is cheaper.

Comment: Old bible scolars (Score -1) 190

by Technician (#47226955) Attached to: New Evidence For Oceans of Water Deep In the Earth

For as much contrivocery as there is in the biblical history, only recently some of the evidence supporting it is starting to show up in science. First the discovery of the "Big Bang" and the Genisis creation story. In the beginning there was nothing, and then it exploded or something like that.

The entire earth was covered in a flood, poor Noah. Hmm, now we find the flood drained somewhere. Is the Great Flood of Noah fiction? I have my doubts. Some of the stories are beginning to be supported by recent discoveries. How did they possibly get it right so many years ago?

Maybe there is another explination we will find.

"Those who will be able to conquer software will be able to conquer the world." -- Tadahiro Sekimoto, president, NEC Corp.