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Comment: Re:Assault Rifles (Score 1) 1435

by WillHirsch (#42466545) Attached to: Newspaper That Published Gun-Owners List Hires Armed Guards

you should try living in a country which is about to criminalise anyone who doesn't register/license their fucking air weapons..

Seeing how doing so is 40 times less likely to be thwarted by getting shot than living in a country where the measure of personal safety is predicated on everyone being an action hero, I'll take this end of the spectrum any day.

Comment: Re:Apple bashing (Score 1) 452

by WillHirsch (#42247529) Attached to: Australian Police Warn That Apple Maps Could Get Someone Killed

How is this remotely insightful? Few to none of the issues with Apple Maps have anything to do with the map design, and everything to do with the data in it. This isn't about taking dumb routes to the right place, this is about the map features being in the wrong location, as well as quite often missing.

Given that the interface has some neat usability enhancements, and given that the mapping data is licensed directly from the well experienced and trusted giants of the mapping industry, it has almost certainly had plenty of work from "outdoors" types. If there's one developer type that they should have consulted more it's apparently the information theory PhDs, because Apple's biggest problem here has been their failure to get the data that they've clearly paid for off their cloud servers and onto mapping screens - and I suspect that is a fundamentally difficult matter of graph theory and data management, not insight into usability.

Parent comes across as an anti-academic knee-jerk rant saved up from several bad online mapping experiences gone by.

Comment: Re:Touche (Score 1) 87

by WillHirsch (#41735371) Attached to: 3-D Printing Enables UVA Student-Built Unmanned Plane

For the same reason people have home 2d printers, they will have 3d printers.

The reason people have home 2D printers is because they generate a huge amount of 2D data, some of which sometimes needs to be copied onto paper. Most data we put to paper is generated very soon before we print it, and the time we have to wait for it matters because once it is printed we usually spend very little time consuming it before disposing of it or filing it away.

We do not generate large amounts of 3D data, especially not the kind that we need to create in a physical form, and especially not the kind that is needed at short notice.

The applications you list (prototyping, repair, modelmaking and molding) are things that 90% of people would never do at home, and those that would will find in perpetuity that (unless they have a hobby that involves high-volume manufacture of one-off objects) on the rare occasions when they do want something made, the nearest commercial 3D printing service will be a more satisfactory solution than the more expensive, poorer quality, and most likely slower, 3D printer they could have cluttering up their home.

Comment: Re:Net energy? (Score 1) 580

by WillHirsch (#41734941) Attached to: Scientists Turn Air Into Petrol
Yes, the regulations allow flywheels, and yes, Flybrid developed a compliant system in 2009, but it never made it onto a race car before use of KERS was suspended for 2010 and they've been very quiet ever since. Williams also developed one for their 2011 car but ultimately opted for a battery-powered system. Both have since supplied flywheel systems for endurance racing cars, but nobody has yet put one in an F1 car.

Comment: Re:Help Me (Score 2) 87

by WillHirsch (#41723303) Attached to: 3-D Printing Enables UVA Student-Built Unmanned Plane
Simple... it's because just like powered flight in the early 20th century meant we would eventually all be driving flying cars everywhere, the development of a hands-free, any-geometry manufacturing process means we will soon be 3D printing all our material needs at home faster than they can be distributed to us from centres of mass manufacture.

Comment: Re:Net energy? (Score 1) 580

by WillHirsch (#41711561) Attached to: Scientists Turn Air Into Petrol
Actually, all F1 cars that have ever raced using regenerative braking have stored their energy in batteries, not flywheels. The motor-alternator operates on the driveshaft, not the hubs, but the batteries are big enough-ass that the default presumed state requires mechanics to handle all parts of the car with thick rubber gloves until it's been confirmed there's no earth path to the them.

Comment: Re:A Defense of Abortion (Score 1) 1469

by WillHirsch (#41133655) Attached to: The Mathematics of 'Legitimate Rape' and Pregnancy
Wouldn't a closer analogy, especially in the case of rape, be that somebody else kidnapped both you and the violinist, stole the violinist's kidneys and then hooked you up to him? (Assume that in nine months he will somehow regrow his kidneys.) You'd have to be pretty cruel in that scenario to let the guy die for the sake of your extra nine months of freedom. It's not as easy as that to escape the question of personhood of a fetus.

Comment: Re:slashdot computer analogy (Score 2) 94

by WillHirsch (#41133557) Attached to: A (Mostly) 3-D Printed Race Car Hits 140 Km/h

the stereotype of 3-d printed stuff being weak seems to be finally going away....

It's not a monocoque... this bodywork is just bolted onto a steel spaceframe. It's made from a polymer resin, so in some respects you could say 3D printing has caught up making things out of plastic, but there's not a great deal of load on these panels to stress it.

The biggest difference between time and space is that you can't reuse time. -- Merrick Furst

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