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Comment: Re:It's a trap! (Score 1) 172

by Nonesuch (#48482227) Attached to: France Wants To Get Rid of Diesel Fuel

Are there more impurities in home heating oil?

I'm in New England, and like many US states, we have a 25c/gallon tax on '#2 Road Diesel' (tax paid, no dye added), this is always Ultra-Low Sulfur Diesel (ULSD). Generally fuel sold for use in cars is only about 10-15% more expensive than fuel sold for use in a furnace, and most of that is highway tax, not extra distillation at the source.

For Delivery, you can can specify either 'Home Heating Oil" or "Off-Road Diesel". Both are #2 Diesel and contain dye (indicating no road tax was paid), and in most US states, both are at least Low Sulfur, but several states now mandate ULSD for heating oil. There is more margin for variation in the grade of oil sold as heating oil than for off-road diesel, but usually they come out of the same tank & truck. Off-Road Diesel is used for construction equipment, generators, etc. In the winter, when delivering off-road diesel, they might add kerosene and/or additional anti-gel treatment, only because home heating oil is usually stored underground or in a basement while construction equipment and storage tanks are more exposed to the elements.

Comment: Aerial or underground ? (Score 1) 509

by Sedennial (#48468373) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Why Is the Power Grid So Crummy In So Many Places?
Actually it isn't. I work for a publicly owned electric and telecom utility. At a cost that can run upwards of a million (yes, $1,000,000) per *mile* to replace move aerial to underground, the rate payers don't generally want to pay for it. Almost all new construction is buried.

And while it seems like most of the causes for outages would be removed by going underground, you only exchange one set of causes for another. Cars get replaced by gophers. Trees on the line get replace by ice when conduit riser fills with water and freezes. Aerial teardowns due to heavy equipment become backhoes that dig on the wrong place and tear up a line.

You also have confined space issues. Now instead of everyone being certified for climbing, bucket trucks, and cranes, they also have to add confined space training and equipment (including continuing education), confined space rescue teams, interlocal or interagency agreements for CSRTs. All of these things add hidden (but not cheap) costs.

In addition fault locating and repair on an underground is much more manpower and technology intensive than aerial. All of these things drive the cost.

Another problem that factors in is environmental regulations. It is much easier (and cheaper by hundreds of thousands of dollars) to get permission to do an aerial build than underground. Every underground build had to deal with permitting for aquifer contamination, native artifacts, wetlands remediation, and so on and so forth. Permitting can add 10% to 100% to a segment of utility infrastructure.

It all boils down to costs. If you can go to your local utility board, commission, or shareholder meeting and convince them that raising rates by 50% to 500% won't get them burned out of their homes, I'll bet they would jump at it. Every utility I know would love to move most of their aging infrastructure underground.

Comment: Re:Well, not to go all Godwin, but ... (Score 1) 1088

by gmhowell (#48465905) Attached to: Officer Not Charged In Michael Brown Shooting

Reminds me of a story my grandfather told me about his experience in the South Pacific. Punchline was "You're a dumb kid, that Japanese guy is a dumb kid, and you both stumbled upon each other. You've got nothing against each other, but because of something people thousands of miles away decided, only one of you was going to walk away that day."

Comment: Re:Price (Score 1) 430

by Archangel Michael (#48463227) Attached to: How Intel and Micron May Finally Kill the Hard Disk Drive

Think back, to the day when we used to run everything off floppy drives, and then hard drives showed up. The first hard drive I ever experienced was a 5 Megabyte drum drive. It was HUGE for the time. AND fast. Then spindle drives came out, and were so much faster (and more expensive) AND could fit inside a computer. Then the drives kept getting faster, and more Storage, and then they started to shrink and ....

Now we're running up to limitations of that class of hardware that new classes (SSD vs Magnetic) are starting to impact the Hard Drive space. The change is coming and once the Spindle drive disappears (like floppies), you'll wonder how we ever lived like that.

Comment: Re:Be Gentle With Him (Score 1) 449

by Archangel Michael (#48463087) Attached to: The Schizophrenic Programmer Who Built an OS To Talk To God

The people who are the real problems are "normal", but use religion as an excuse for their bad behavior, or those who follow religion so blindly that they do bad things because of group pressure.

Religion isn't the problem. The problem is that other thing you used. Nazi's killed plenty of people in the name of the state, using peer pressure. The problem is man, not religion.

Comment: Re:Be Gentle With Him (Score 1) 449

by Archangel Michael (#48463067) Attached to: The Schizophrenic Programmer Who Built an OS To Talk To God

The root of men killing men isn't religion, it is control. Religion is just a tool, as was atheism that killed millions in Communist countries (purging the evil of religion, no doubt).

The problem you have, is that you're blaming the tool (Religion) and not those killing (man wanting control). And this has blinded many people to the real issue.

I am a libertarian, and freedom is scary.

Comment: Re:Price (Score 1) 430

by Archangel Michael (#48462609) Attached to: How Intel and Micron May Finally Kill the Hard Disk Drive

It is more than just Price per TB. It is speed (IOPS). What good is all the storage space in the world, if it is slow? If it was just Price per TB, Tapes are even higher density/price, however the IOPS are so slow.

If you read the article on the Samsung SSD, you'll realize why they put it on a bus that wasn't SATA III (Not fast enough)

Size, Speed, Price, pick any two.

Optimization hinders evolution.