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Comment Re:This is big news, actually (Score 4, Insightful) 224

3)- "I have nothing to hide / you're old if you care"

I, and I'll easily assume that many, many others, are getting pretty damned sick and tired of hearing that line from idiots who have been so thoroughly indoctrinated, that they probably don't even consciously know that they're parroting it. It is a fact that, after a certain point in the development of a human being, desiring privacy is a normal, natural, healthy thing for a person to want. Not wanting or caring about your private life being private is an abberation, a sign that something is wrong. This whole faux culture of 'sharing everything with everyone' is some sort of a sickness and it needs to stop.

By the way, cfalcon, just to be sure you understand me: I'm agreeing with you on all counts, not attacking you.

Comment Re:sunfire / in my stellerator / makes me... happy (Score 1) 94

So on average the fission reactor material only has about 10% of its atoms displaced over the lifetime, while the fusion reactor would have, on average, every atom displaced hundreds of times over the lifetime.

How can you make generalized statements like that? Cross sections vary by many orders of magnitude Fission reactors are generally made of steel, which is hardly setting any records in terms of low cross sections. The smaller the reactor, the less material you have to replace, and the more expensive the material you can use. And being "displaced" is not a fundamental universal material property effect, it depends on how the material responds to radiation damage, which varies greatly. Generally materials respond better at high temperatures (annealing), and fusion reactors operate of course at far higher temperatures than fission reactors.

I have trouble seeing how one would consider neutrons per square meter to matter more than neutrons per MeV. Because neutrons determine what you're going to have to replace, and energy determines how much money you get from selling the power to pay for said maintenance. You can spread it over a broad area and do infrequent replacements, or have it confined to a tight area and do frequent replacements, the same amount of material is effected. Some degree of downtime for maintenance is normal in power plants - even "high availablility" fission plans still only get ~85% uptime.

Comment Re:Advisors? (Score 1) 70

I don't understand why the term financial advisor is used when they are just salesmen. What advice do they provide other than, "you should definitely buy our products", or maybe, "I would advise you against closing your account with us"?

There is more to it than that.

How to Choose a Financial Planner

Look for a financial adviser who is a certified financial planner (CFP). They're licensed and regulated, plus take mandatory classes on different aspects of financial planning. . . . Financial planners advise clients on how best to save, invest, and grow their money. They can help you tackle a specific financial goal—such as readying yourself to buy a house—or give you a macro view of your money and the interplay of your various assets. Some specialize in retirement or estate planning, while some others consult on a range of financial matters.

Don’t confuse planners with stockbrokers — the market mavens people call to trade stocks. Financial planners also differ from accountants who can help you lower your tax bill, insurance agents who might lure you in with complicated life insurance policies, or the person at your local Fidelity office urging you to buy mutual funds.

Anyone can hang out a shingle as a financial planner, but that doesn’t make that person an expert. They may tack on an alphabet soup of letters after their names, but CFP (short for certified financial planner) is the most significant credential. A CFP has passed a rigorous test administered by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards about the specifics of personal finance. CFPs must also commit to continuing education on financial matters and ethics classes to maintain their designation. The CFP credential is a good sign that a prospective planner will give sound financial advice. Still, even those who pass the exam may come up short on skills and credibility. As with all things pertaining to your money, be meticulous in choosing the right planner. . . .

A growing number of financial planners make money only when you pay them a fee for their counsel. These independent financial planners don’t get a cut from life insurers or fund companies. You might pay them a flat fee, such as $1,500, for a financial plan. Or you could pay an annual fee, often 1% of all the assets—investment, retirement, college-savings and other accounts—they’re minding for you. Others charge by the hour, like lawyers. . . . more

Comment Re:sunfire / in my stellerator / makes me... happy (Score 1) 94

Hmm, thought... and honestly, I haven't kept up on fusion designs as much as I should have... but has there been any look into ionic liquids as a liquid diverter concept? In particular I'm thinking lithium or beryllium salts. They're vacuum-compatible, they should resist sputtering, they're basically part of your breeding blanket that you need already... just large amounts, flowing, and exposed. Do you know if there's been any work on this?

Comment Re:sunfire / in my stellerator / makes me... happy (Score 2) 94

The plasma facing material faces a flux of 1 neutron per 17,6Mev. By contrast, nuclear fuel cladding faces a flux of ~2,5 neutrons per 202,5 Mev, or 1 per 81 MeV. It's certainly higher, but it's not a whole different ballpark. And yes, you're dealing with higher energy neutrons but in a way that can help you - you've often got lower cross sections (for example), and in most cases you want the first wall to just let neutrons past.

There's a number of materials with acceptable properties. Graphite is fine (no wigner energy problems at those temperatures). Beryllium is great, and you need it anyway. In areas where the blanket isn't, boron carbide is great. Etc. These materials aren't perfect, but they're not things that get rapidly "converted into dust" by neutrons. Really, it's not the first wall in general anyway that I'd have concerns about, it's the divertor. The issue isn't so much that it takes a high neutron and alpha flux and "erodes" fast - that doesn't change the reactor's overall neutrons per unit power output ratio, and if you have a singular component that needs regular replacement, said replacement can be optimized. The issue is that you have to bear such an incredible thermal flux on one component. Generally you want to spread out thermal loads, it makes things a lot easier.

Submission + - Even with Telemetry Disabled, Windows 10 Talks to Dozens of Microsoft Servers ( 1

Motherfucking Shit writes: Curious about the various telemetry and personal information being collected by Windows 10, one user installed Windows 10 Enterprise and disabled all of the telemetry and reporting options. Then he configured his router to log all the connections that happened anyway. Even after opting out wherever possible, his firewall captured Windows making around 4,000 connection attempts to 93 different IP addresses during an 8 hour period, with most of those IPs controlled by Microsoft. Even the enterprise version of Windows 10 is checking in with Redmond when you tell it not to — and it's doing so frequently.

Comment Re:Fusion energy is impractical (Score 1) 94

When a fast neutron hits an atom it knocks it out of its position and frequently changes it to a different element/isotope.

The same applies to slow neutrons, so....? Your average 14,1 MeV neutron is most likely to inelastic scatter down to the point where more exotic reactions than (n, gamma) are basically impossible (excepting a few specific cases, like 6Li(n,t)4He - again, not dangerous). Only a small percentage of your 14,1MeV neutrons (depending on the material they're passing through) have a chance of undergoing anything more than a standard (n, gamma) transmutation. Unless the system is specifically designed to cause that (for example, a beryllium multiplication in the lithium blanket). The standard case is inelastic scatter once or twice -> elastic scatter a bunch -> become partially or completely thermalized -> capture.

This turns a solid structural material into a radioactive powder

What happens depends entirely on what's being bombarded. Many materials are perfectly fine after long periods of exposure - slow or fast neutrons. Light ions in particular are usually either A) relatively unaffected (sometimes requiring sufficient heat for proper annealing, sometimes not), or B) incredibly good absorbers, leaving nothing dangerous behind. See a more detailed breakdown above.

Comment Re:Violation of the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act (Score 1) 373

Did you even read the article? Off course not. Anyone whose fingerprint reader stopped working had their phone bricked - they didn't have to do any sort of repair to have the error occur. And it's highly unlikely that someone who is using a stolen phone is going to allow his name to be published in relation to this issue. No free replacement was offered, so quit making things up.

In other words, go troll elsewhere.

Comment Re:Violation of the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act (Score 1) 373

The phone kept working fine after the repair. This was a purposeful brick; the user has the right to install components that aren't from Apple at any point in time, warranty or not. If you install fancy lights or a higher-performance exhaust or a better battery or a better sound system on your car, this doesn't give the manufacturer the right to brick your car. Ever.

Before bricking the phone, to avoid liability, they would have to warn the user that unauthorized parts have been detected and the phone will be bricked. Of course, if they did that, a screenshot would be enough for a class action under Magnuson-Moss.

The car companies were the original targets of Magnuson-Moss - "You had your oil change done elsewhere, and you didn't use our brand of oil, your warranty is now void."

Comment friend's computer hit by this (Score 4, Informative) 38

i have a friend who called me to say that their computer had had the default browser search settings changed to some adware. so i checked the instructions on how to remove it, only to find that the settings shown in the screen-shots *weren't there*. turns out that inspection of the timestamps on the filesystem, the phishing-malware had *replaced* legitimate system libraries, which enabled them to disguise the malware and prevent its own removal. it was necessary for us to go round some friend's houses, drop the macbook into single-user mode and copy over replacement files from an identical copy of macosx.

now, this is the first time i've ever dealt with macosx viruses, but i was surprised that it was so easy for my non-technical friend to be fooled by a phishing attempt which scared her with the "you have 2,500 viruses do you want us to fix it?" tactic. as a purely software-libre end-user for the past 20 years, all i can say is, "welcome to the monoculture world, apple. your false sense of security myth is well and truly over, and you have a hell of a lot of catching up to do".

Comment Re:Mars is impossible (Score 1) 306

Like I said, NASA says you're wrong - and they're the ones doing the actual research on survival on Mars. Get over it.

Mining asteroids only sounds great in theory - until you get down to the cost/benefit equation, or if you never intend to earth. Ever. Get over that too while you're at it.

Comment don't look down, coyote (Score 1) 281

At this point power consumption matters a heck of a lot more for ubiquity than pure performance gains.

I'm sure the fire-breathing dragster edition of current silicon technology (with a pin count to match) will continue to exist at an upscale price for those willing to pay for it.

That uncomfortable rush in your stomach? It's from clinging to yesterday.

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