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Solar Plant Sets Birds On Fire As They Fly Overhead 423

Posted by Soulskill
from the free-hot-wings dept.
Elledan writes: Federal investigators in California have requested that BrightSource — owner of thermal solar plants — halt the construction of more (and bigger) plants until their impact on wildlife has been further investigated. "Unlike many other solar plants, the Ivanpah plant does not generate energy using photovoltaic solar panels. Instead, it has more than 300,000 mirrors, each the size of a garage door. Together, they cover 1,416 hectares. Each mirror collects and reflects solar rays, focusing and concentrating solar energy from their entire surfaces upward onto three boiler towers, each looming up to 40 stories high. The solar energy heats the water inside the towers to produce steam, which turns turbines that generate enough electricity for 140,000 homes." The concentrated solar energy chars and incinerates the feathers of passing birds. BrightSource estimates about a thousand bird die this way every year, but an environmental group claims the real number is much higher.

Comment: Re:Why speed only a little? (Score 1) 459

by TheDarkMaster (#47706105) Attached to: Google's Driverless Cars Capable of Exceeding Speed Limit
Well, the problem is that the speed limit exists for several good reasons. One of these reasons is that the highway itself has a speed limit imposed by physics, that if you pass the same you simply will not be able to keep on track and will come out straight at the first turn. And the faster you go the harder it is to stop, until you reach a point that your car will simply be unable to stop by running faster than your brake system can handle. And also have the issue of safety margin: The closer you get to the limits of your car, the more danger you run in case of an accident.

Comment: Re:Dammit! Adam you rolled over... (Score 1) 62

by TheDarkMaster (#47702393) Attached to: Adam Carolla Settles With Podcasting Patent Troll
The biggest problem I see in the north-american justice system is that you have to pay (and pay a lot) to defend yourself, as absurd and ridiculous that are the accusations against you. That way the bandit lawyers always win, because winning or losing the cause they will always make you lose a lot of money.

Rightscorp's New Plan: Hijack Browsers Until Infingers Pay Up 372

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the guilty-until-proven-guilty dept.
A few weeks ago, Rightscorp announced plans to have ISPs disconnect repeat copyright infringers. mpicpp (3454017) wrote in with news that Rightscorp announced during their latest earnings call further plans to require ISPs to block all web access (using a proxy system similar to hotel / college campus wifi logins) until users admit guilt and pay a settlement fine (replacing the current system of ISPs merely forwarding notices to users). Quoting TorrentFreak: [Rightscorp] says 75,000 cases have been settled so far with copyright holders picking up $10 from each. ... What is clear is that Rightscorp is determined to go after "Comcast, Verizon, AT&T, Cable Vision and one more" in order to "get all of them compliant" (i.e forwarding settlement demands). The company predicts that more details on the strategy will develop in the fall, but comments from COO & CTO Robert Steele hint on how that might be achieved. ... "[What] we really want to do is move away from termination and move to what's called a hard redirect, like, when you go into a hotel and you have to put your room number in order to get past the browser and get on to browsing the web." The idea that mere allegations from an anti-piracy company could bring a complete halt to an entire household or business Internet connection until a fine is paid is less like a "piracy speeding ticket" and more like a "piracy wheel clamp", one that costs $20 to have removed.

For every complex problem, there is a solution that is simple, neat, and wrong. -- H. L. Mencken