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Comment: Re:The USA (Score 1) 182

by Whatanut (#47194091) Attached to: Rising Sea Levels Uncover Japanese War Dead In Marshall Islands

I fail to see how we're "very close to a large percentage" being able to do this. Sounds plausible on the surface. But I still see a huge amount of infrastructure that needs to be put in place. It's not like it's good enough to just have a power outlet somewhere in the building that you can use. Number one, a parking garage would basically need a receptacle at every parking space. Along with a system for charging the person recharging their vehicle. Energy is not free.

That being said, are these difficult obstacles to overcome? No. But it's still a lot of infrastructure somebody needs to invest in before it becomes a plausible solution.

Comment: Poor experience for those that do have kinect (Score 5, Insightful) 174

Doesn't that then lead to a bad situation for kinect users? If you design a game that relies on that overhead, then those that don't have it will have a poor experience. Granted, you can probably just disconnect the kinect and be just fine. Be all know what the general masses will do. Complain.

Technology

Sandia Labs Researcher Develops Fertilizer Without the Explosive Potential 180

Posted by samzenpus
from the no-boom-for-you dept.
cylonlover writes "Ammonium nitrate is a commonly used fertilizer, but when mixed with a fuel such as diesel, it makes a powerful explosive – as seen in last week's fertilizer plant explosion in Texas. But it's the deliberate use of the compound in improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and acts of terror such as the Oklahoma City bombing that gives rise to even greater cause for concern. This is why Kevin Fleming, an optical engineer at Sandia National Laboratories, developed a fertilizer alternative that isn't detonable and therefore can't be used in a bomb."
Security

Hackers Could Abuse Electric Car Chargers To Cripple the Grid, Researchers Say 126

Posted by samzenpus
from the everybody-panic dept.
alphadogg writes "Hackers could use vulnerable charging stations to prevent the charging of electric vehicles in a certain area, or possibly even use the vulnerabilities to cripple parts of the electricity grid, a security researcher said during the Hack in the Box conference in Amsterdam on Thursday. While electric cars and EV charging systems are still in their infancy, they could become a more common way to travel within the next 10 years. If that happens, it is important that the charging systems popping up in cities around the world are secure in order to prevent attackers from accessing and tempering with them, said Ofer Shezaf, of HP ArcSight. At the moment, they are not secure at all, he said."
Books

Iain Banks: Extremely Ill With Cancer 150

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the not-actually-jaundice dept.
The_Other_Kelly writes "News that will shock and sadden the many fans of Iain (M.) Banks. He is suffering from gall bladder cancer, and things do not look good: 'The bottom line, now, I'm afraid, is that as a late stage gall bladder cancer patient, I'm expected to live for "several months" and it's extremely unlikely I'll live beyond a year.' His books, both normal and science fiction, are world view warping Excessions, and my heart goes out to him and his. I am shocked and saddened. Thank you, Iain."
Science

Is the Era of Groundbreaking Science Over? 470

Posted by Soulskill
from the just-until-zefram-cochrane dept.
An anonymous reader writes "In decades and centuries past, scientific genius was easy to quantify. Those scientists who were able to throw off the yoke of established knowledge and break new ground on their own are revered and respected. But as humanity, as a species, has gotten better at science, and the basics of most fields have been refined over and over, it's become much harder for any one scientist to make a mark on the field. There's still plenty we don't know, but so much of it is highly specialized that many breakthroughs are understood by only a handful. Even now, the latest generation is more likely to be familiar with the great popularizers of science, like Neil deGrasse Tyson, Bill Nye, and Carl Sagan, than of the researchers at the forefront of any particular field. "...most scientific fields aren't in the type of crisis that would enable paradigm shifts, according to Thomas Kuhn's classic view of scientific revolutions. Simonton argues that instead of finding big new ideas, scientists currently work on the details in increasingly specialized and precise ways." Will we ever again see a scientist get recognition like Einstein did?"

Comment: Re:Around here (Score 2) 392

by Whatanut (#41809899) Attached to: 26 Nuclear Power Plants In Hurricane Sandy's Path

The wikipedia page on containment buildings has this blurb.

In 1988, Sandia National Laboratories conducted a test of slamming a jet fighter into a large concrete block at 481 miles per hour (775 km/h).[14][15] The airplane left only a 2.5-inch-deep (64 mm) gouge in the concrete. Although the block was not constructed like a containment building missile shield, it was not anchored, etc., the results were considered indicative. A subsequent study by EPRI, the Electric Power Research Institute, concluded that commercial airliners did not pose a danger.[16]

While not a direct proof of design criteria, it seems to line up with the original statement.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Containment_building

Crime

How Hair Can be Used To Track Where You've Been 133

Posted by samzenpus
from the hair-papers-please dept.
First time accepted submitter kandelar writes "PBS recently ran a story about how some scientists are using human hair to trace where a person has been. The combinations of different isotopes in water make for somewhat unique signatures from place to place. These isotopes get placed in growing hair strands which can then be traced back to identify where a person has been."

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