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Submission + - RIP Alan Rickman, AKA Hans Gruber, Severus Snape

TigerPlish writes: Variety reports Rickman died after a short bout of cancer, and was surrounded by friends and family when he went.

While some may question how is this News for Nerds, I'm of the opinion that Harry Potter was, is, and will always be a nerd favorite.

Comment Vacuum tubes. (Score 1) 135

Not a hack, per se -- but to do tubes and wrench on 'em yourself pretty much means you're a hacker.

Hook 'em up to horn speakers and you can get very good sound for not much dosh. Depending on many factors ridiculously good sound is possible, actually, for not much dosh.

It teaches about electronics. And also teaches basic mechanical skills, what with the screwdriver, wrenches, soldering iron, etc etc -- it's more than just audio.

No, really -- but be safe, triple-digit VDC will really @#!% you up and there's plenty in your typical power amp.

Just be careful you don't step in the quite deep quicksand of hardcore audiophilia. There's a balance.

Comment Re: Mental Illness Reporting (Score 3, Interesting) 935

If this isn't checked it'll go beyond loons with guns. I think we, as a country, gun-friendly or not, just lost a great deal of protection with this connection between the medical profession and FBI.

What's next? Getting a knock on the door at 3 am because they found THC in a lab sample taken for something entirely medical in nature? (As opposed to a deliberate drug screen)

Comment Forget the "smart" safety (Score 1) 935

What we'll end up with is a plastic projectile able to change course mid-flight, in rifle caliber.. maybe even in pistol.

*sigh* and then the old-schoolers will bitch and retch that these newfangled 'lectronic steerable plastic bullits are nowhere near as elegant as the JHPs of the past, guided by the eyeball and the rifled barrel.

There's no winning!

Comment Stigma needs to go away (Score 3, Insightful) 935

There's still a marked stigma associated with mental illness in the US. It has been eroding over many years now.

The more the stigma erodes, the more people will seek treatment.

It's not as easy as the vast majority of people think it is, seeking treatment. It's a very deliberate move. Akin to pulling the trigger when the sight's on something alive. That's how heavy making that first call is.

Just sayin'. Chip away at that stigma, chip away at the violence.

Comment Re:Yeah yeah (Score 5, Interesting) 562

You sold it to DISNEY of all companies, you know that they only produce the most shallow of crap these days

Ever since John Lassater and Ed Catmull went from Pixar to Disney, Disney's features and shorts have shown an improvement.

Wreck-it-Ralph was amazing and quite deep; Frozen was a good movie that somehow went on to be their biggest hit yet and Big Hero 6 wasn't exactly a superficial, shallow piece.

Man. I can't believe I just typed nice things about the House of Mouse, I used to loathe it with a passion.. back in the Eisner days. But again.. since Pixar guys went to Disney, Disney's improved a bit.

Now, there's nothing that will make me forgive Disney for what they did to their IT people. No amount of good film will make up for that.

Comment Re:What you reap, you sow (Score 1) 223

Oh really? Is that based on how much money the US makes exporting?

I'm in the market for consumer-grade electronics, not jet airliners, space launch vehicles, locomotives or cars.

Please point out specific makes / models of consumer-grade electronics I can get in a typical big-box or online retailer that are made here.

Where is my US-made A/V receiver?
Where is my US-made phone?
Where is my US-made TV?

Nowhere. Ran out of the country decades ago in the race to the bottom.

The only thing I can think of in consumer-grade electronics are speakers. We still make speakers here.. well, some of them. Even the grand old names of speakers are making some of their lineup in China.

There are some things being made at the very high end of things. Like RGM watches. beautiful stuff and US-made, but hardly within grasp of most people.

So, other than airplanes, spacecraft and other heavy stuff -- where's this "half" that you speak of?

Comment Re:What you reap, you sow (Score 1) 223

You've described all we've been doing since the early 90s - draw it here, make it anywhere but here.

Do you really think there's no link between that mentality (design here, build anywhere but) and the decline of the Electric and Electronic Engineer?

I think there is, so does the government, and so does the guy who wrote TFA.

Why do you think where it's built doesn't matter? Is it because that's the status quo for the past third of century?

I think it does matter, and for reasons which have been obscured by various economic bubbles over the past 30 years.

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