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Comment: Re:Get it right (Score 2) 102

by The Grim Reefer (#47391185) Attached to: Two Earth-Like Exoplanets Don't Actually Exist
And even after all of that, how do we know that, once we send a generational ship, their civilization will even be standing by the time we get there. Or since the generation that invited us will (possibly) be long dead, will their descendants still be keen on the idea of a bunch of ship born ape descendants arriving on a one way trip to consume resources? Since those on a generational ship will be more or less technology stagnant and isolated, who knows what kind of superstitions they may develop, or how primitive they would seem to be once they arrived.

Comment: Re:say what you will... (Score 1) 105

by The Grim Reefer (#47383533) Attached to: London Regulator Says Uber Is Operating Legally
Besides the big Woosh the statement could be read as three sixty degree turns, which would be totaled as one-hundred eighty degrees. Or a step in the opposite direction. Of course it's a little difficult to turn 180 degrees and go where no one has gone before. Still, it makes about as much sense as most marketing speak. Every time I hear a company talking about their new product being a "quantum leap" I have to laugh.

Comment: Re:Thanks for pointing out the "briefly" part. (Score 1) 461

by The Grim Reefer (#47325293) Attached to: Half of Germany's Power Supplied By Solar, Briefly

Cadmium, indium, gallium, lead, and selenium are all used in solar panel production.

Silane gas is used in the production of Si wafers. There are several silane leaks reported each year in the US during the production of silicon wafers. Silane can spontaneously explode.Manufacturing of silane and trichlorosilane results in waste silicon tetrachloride, which is nasty stuff.

Sulfur hexafluoride is used in cleaning the reaction chambers that silicone is produced in. It's a very potent green house gas. In fact, it's 25,000 times more potent than CO2.

sodium hydroxide and potassium hydroxide are used on the cut edges of silicone wafers. Hydrochloric acid, sulfuric acid, nitric acid and hydrogen fluoride are used to clean the silicone wafers during production. Phosphine or arsine gas is used in the doping of the semiconductor. Phosphorous oxychloride, phosphorous trichloride, boron bromide and boron trichloride are also used during the doping process.

Do I really need to go on? Or is there any point as you obviously choose to ignore reality.

Comment: feasible? (Score 1) 501

I'd like an engineer to take a look at his plans. Claiming it is "feasible", and that it "should" be easier than a skyscraper does not exactly instill confidence.

This guy is also a physicist. It would be nice to know what a geologist would think adding a man made mountain, or three, would do to the bedrock in the mid-west.

Has he consulted with a climatologist? I suspect it would affect the local weather patterns at the very least. It would probably drastically change the weather pasterns on the east coat as well.

What about migratory birds and such?

Comment: Re:Thanks for pointing out the "briefly" part. (Score 1) 461

by The Grim Reefer (#47317417) Attached to: Half of Germany's Power Supplied By Solar, Briefly

"Expensive" is very different from "too expensive". Some countries (probably most of them other than America) value things other than money. Things like "not risking dying from radiation sickness" and "not poisoning the world for future generations" are often high on that list.

While I agree with you. "Clean" energy production is very important. I also feel that solar is not the all benevolent perfect energy source we want it to be. It is closer to what nuclear was in the 1950's/1960's. Solar panel production is very messy and creates tons of extremely toxic waste. With China trying to corner the market on solar panel production, do you really believe that they are taking great care in clean up?

It's also not been around in any meaningful way until recently. We don't know what the hell we will do with millions of tons of EOL panels. We won't know until 25 years later. Except unlike nuclear, solar panels are not limited to just a few companies.

Obviously nuclear plants can experience catastrophic failures the likes of which we should never see with solar. But unlike the disposal of fissile material, solar panel disposal is not nearly as regulated. After 25 years of use, your neighbor in West Virginia, or Nebraska may simply bury them in their back yard. Or just toss them in their field. Then it may take another 25 years or more until the heavy metals make their way into the water table. I expect they will be treated in much the same way that the old 2 meter C-band satellite dishes are. Simply left in place to rot, or cut off of their mounts and tossed on the ground to decay.

Comment: What about... (Score 1) 249

The TSA? Can they still require you to give them passwords? Or copy data from your phone?

What's to stop the police from searching a phone once in their possession in a different room once a person has been arrested? Granted, they will need a warrant to make anything they find admissible, but a warrant can be requested later once they decide it's worth the trouble.

Does this also apply to the monitoring programs that the US marshals have coached local law enforcement to lie about to judges?

Comment: Flying East (Score 1) 163

by The Grim Reefer (#47315341) Attached to: I suffer from jet lag ...
I'm usually fine when I fly to the east. Going from the east coast to the EU I sleep as much as I can on the flight. Then arrive in the morning. If I can take a 2 hour nap once I get to the hotel and then go to bed around 8 that evening, I'm adjusted the next day. Coming home is usually harder to adjust for me. Especially if I've been gone for more than 2 weeks. Going to the west coast isn't really that bad. But if I fly farther west than that, it's a lot harder for me to adjust.

Comment: Pathetic (Score 5, Informative) 538

by The Grim Reefer (#47290069) Attached to: Teaching College Is No Longer a Middle Class Job
The state of the education system in the US has become pathetic. I've seen it for years in the primary education system. I'm a little shocked that it is now at the university level too. Especially with the prices of tuition these days. It's even more surprising when you read stories like this

+ - The Scary New Evidence on BPA-Free Plastics -> 2

Submitted by The Grim Reefer
The Grim Reefer (1162755) writes "Today many plastic products, from sippy cups and blenders to Tupperware containers, are marketed as BPA-free. But CertiChem and its founder, George Bittner's findings—some of which have been confirmed by other scientists—suggest that many of these alternatives share the qualities that make BPA so potentially harmful.

Those startling results set off a bitter fight with the $375-billion-a-year plastics industry. The American Chemistry Council, which lobbies for plastics makers and has sought to refute the science linking BPA to health problems, has teamed up with Tennessee-based Eastman Chemical—the maker of Tritan, a widely used plastic marketed as being free of estrogenic activity—in a campaign to discredit Bittner and his research. The company has gone so far as to tell corporate customers that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rejected Bittner's testing methods. (It hasn't.) Eastman also sued CertiChem and its sister company, PlastiPure, to prevent them from publicizing their findings that Tritan is estrogenic, convincing a jury that its product displayed no estrogenic activity. And it launched a PR blitz touting Tritan's safety, targeting the group most vulnerable to synthetic estrogens: families with young children. "It can be difficult for consumers to tell what is really safe," the vice president of Eastman's specialty plastics division, Lucian Boldea, said in one web video, before an image of a pregnant woman flickered across the screen. With Tritan, he added, "consumers can feel confident that the material used in their products is free of estrogenic activity.""

Link to Original Source

Comment: I'm confused (Score 1) 139

I didn't RTFA, but this is /. so that's a given. As I recall, plastic is the leftover waste from refining oil. That was one of the reasons it was so revolutionary to begin with. No one knew what to do with all of those tons of leftover sludge created by the refining process. If this process can convert plastic into some kind of useful fuel, I would think it would be more efficient to do so prior to creating the plastic to begin with.

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