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User Journal

Journal: Why does Slashdot hate/ignore Economics? 2

Journal by TheSync

So on today's article Supplies of Rare Earth Elements Exhausted By 2017, we have these comments rated +4 or more:

The problem isn't economics, it's the idiots that try to invoke it in the way we see them doing here. The fact that the price of a commodity increases when it's in short supply doesn't cure the shortage or make it less of a problem; it merely allocates what supplies remain to those who are willing to pay the most. It's a manifestation of the shortage, not an explanation of it.

In a severe food shortage, yes, the price of food shoots up. People who can afford it continue to eat well (albeit at the expense of other things), but others starve. As far as your typical affluent conservative is concerned, the market has efficiently "solved" the problem.

Economics is the new God of the Gaps. You don't know the answer? Silly old physical laws getting in the way? No problem; Economics dictates that someone else will be motivated to come up with a solution. It's impossible? Why, that just makes it more valuable!

If you are a true economist, then fuck off and play with your stock markets and leave actual science to actual scientists.

I don't know why so many people who may otherwise be informed are so hateful of economics. It is a bit like the reaction from creationists.

User Journal

Journal: WiFi Cardboard Horn Antenna 2

Journal by TheSync

I had my summer intern to build a cardboard horn antenna for testing long distance 802.11b connections. Here are three pictures of it: 1 / 2 / 3. It has about 10 dB gain over a PCMCIA card wireless NIC. The antenna is based on this design.

We tested it across the Memorial Bridge in Washington, DC. Not only were we able to get a signal, but from the DC shore near the Lincoln Memorial, we were able to pick up wireless access points in Rosslyn, VA.

I am a computer. I am dumber than any human and smarter than any administrator.