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Comment: Re:One of many potential causes (Score 1) 85

by Reziac (#49552755) Attached to: Bees Prefer Nectar Laced With Neonicotinoids

Honeybees are technically an invasive species in North America; they were imported, not native. There are numerous other species, including small native bees, that did the pollination work before honeybees came along. Far as I have heard, populations of these native bees have not been affected by CCD.

Neonicotinoids are relatively expensive (4 years ago, Imidacloprid was $25/pound, about 5x the cost of permethins), and I'd guess despite being about a quarter of the insecticide market, that in ag they are probably not used outside of the fairly limited areas that grow fruits and vegetables -- as those crops have a better profit margin. Yet CCD has been seen very widely, including in areas where there isn't any row-crop agriculture.

Anecdotally, I've used Imidacloprid to control desert stink beetles, and did not observe any issues with my wild honeybees (who frequented the same areas, cuz that's where the water was).

The scare over DDT was manufactured. Silent Spring (which I read, back when it was new) was mostly fiction and has been discredited, yet it influenced a whole generation of environmentalism -- that, not truth, was its point and intent. Some estimates put malaria deaths due to ending use of DDT in the millions. Meanwhile, the connection with condor populations was at best tenuous.

Comment: Re:aka "A stock pumper" (Score 1) 43

by Kjella (#49552569) Attached to: Oculus Rift: 2015 Launch Unlikely, But Not Impossible

An analyst is generally not a person eating his own dog food, it's a person trying to sell his insight of the market to third parties as investment advice. What it means in practice is that you're trying to make a lot of statements that make you seem smart in hindsight but don't compromise your credibility when they don't pan out. Like in this case, if the Oculus Rift doesn't launch in 2015 this won't even be a footnote. If it does launch, he can point to this statement and say "Look, I wasn't sure but I had a hunch this would happen". You don't need to make any elaborate theories of stock manipulation, this is simply one analyst trying to pump up his own career.

Comment: Re:Wireless Networking (Score 1) 174

by mrsam (#49552557) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Are the Most Stable Smartphones These Days?

That's strange. My WNDR3700v3 is rock stable. The only time it goes down is when I lose power, once or twice a year. The router Is always busy. Various members of in my household are constantly streaming videos. I've got laptops, i-device, and android devices pinging the intertubes constantly. Everything works. I don't use "device discovery", whatever that is, though.

Comment: Re:and... (Score 0) 245

by Kjella (#49551267) Attached to: Tesla To Announce Battery-Based Energy Storage For Homes

This isn't stupidity, exactly, it's obstinacy. And actually, it's cognitive dissonance. Typically, when you see someone passionately arguing against their own best interests, that is what at fault. In this case, one of the people ranting against solar and storage is arguing that if this were a good idea, it would have been done already, because they want to believe that they are more intelligent than Elon Musk, every PG&E employee, and the majority of slashdotters who have woken up and recognized that batteries have gotten immensely better within our lifetimes â" and will likely improve just as much in the next thirty or forty years.

You use a lot of big words, I don't think you know what any of them mean. What I argue is that there's structural differences that makes this a better idea to to centrally than at home, regardless of how good or cheap the batteries get. If it's cost effective for you to store the power in a battery and use it in the daytime it's going to be more cost effective for them to store the power in a battery and sell it to you in the daytime. The very reason they sell it cheap at night is that there's no cost effective way to store the excess power for later, if there were the low night prices would go away. You're on the wrong end of the Dunning-Kruger effect here, buddy.

Comment: Re:So, Microsoft is a social leech! (Score 0) 92

by Kjella (#49551177) Attached to: Microsoft Increases Android Patent Licensing Reach

Scenario A: Google back when they initially developed Android ran into a design roadblock. They saw no way to solve the particular problem until one of the developers read a MS patent that solved their issue. MS is therefore paid royalties on their patent.

It's not about finding a solution. It's about taking what somebody has worked on, experimented with, done usability testing, put in a product and convinced the market to use and have a second company come in and say thanks for all the hard work, in a month we'll have a cheaper clone doing the exact same thing.

Scenario B: Google developed Android without ever having heard of any MS patents.

...and not knowing of any product using any of the MS patents, even if they were unaware it was patented and by who. Particularly in the same business, it's rather hard not to know what features the competition is advertising. It's certainly hard to prove you didn't know about them. Submarine patents are a different story, but for example when they made Android they probably couldn't claim ignorance of any features the iPhone had. Even the business requirements and feature requests can be "contaminated" by other products, it's not a feature you'd have added unless someone else had done it first.

Of course sometimes you get unlucky and develop the exact same solution, but that also means you're reinventing the wheel. Do you want a medal? Or you might feel it's obvious and widespread now, but was it that obvious when it was patented? Ten years ago is a long time in the tech industry, things that I go "well, duuuuuuuuh" to today maybe wasn't. If they were, I'd like to go back and redo my investments. I'm sure you all remember the warm reception the iPod get, boy was that right on the money...

Comment: Re:One of many potential causes (Score 1) 85

by Reziac (#49551073) Attached to: Bees Prefer Nectar Laced With Neonicotinoids

Actually there's a pretty good trail being laid down:

http://missoulian.com/news/loc...

Not only that, but per this article (with stats), bee populations are stable to increasing despite CCD:

http://www.perc.org/articles/e...

The amount of honey being produced is a good indicator, given you can't make honey without bees.

This won't load for me but I imagine it goes into more detail:
http://www.ars.usda.gov/is/br/...

And actually, you can demonstrate 'insanity' in any wild colony with an aging queen -- the bees become aggressive at greater and greater distances from the hive. I watched this with a wild colony that had taken up residence in the wall of a barn. For the first three years, they were 'gentle' (not concerned about intruders) -- to the point that you could actually poke around in their entryway without incurring any retaliation. The 4th year, they got twitchy about people walking nearby. The 5th year, they regularly chased people who passed within about 20 feet of their hive entrance. The colony died off entirely that winter. Far as I saw, it never swarmed, indicating they didn't produce any new queens.

We probably don't see this in domesticated colonies because modern beekeepers are diligent about replacing queens in a timely manner. But I asked an old-timer about it (who'd been in the bee business since the 1930s) and he said that was all perfectly normal for a colony with an old queen.

Comment: Re:and... (Score 3, Insightful) 245

by Kjella (#49550257) Attached to: Tesla To Announce Battery-Based Energy Storage For Homes

Cue Slashdotters claiming it is either impossible or a really bad thing in 3..2..1..

Impossible? No. Economical? I don't see how, if it were why isn't the power company doing this centrally? Then they could average it out across everyone on the grid, instead of just you as the problem is usually production not transmission capacity. I guess it might make sense if you're producing your own power with solar panels and don't have to transfer power into the grid when it's sunny and out of the grid when it's dark, but the price seems steep for what you're getting. I mean this tech already exists but only for solar powered cabins off the grid, it's really expensive per kWh and usually just to power light bulbs and such.

...though his invention worked superbly -- his theory was a crock of sewage from beginning to end. -- Vernor Vinge, "The Peace War"

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