Forgot your password?

Comment: Re:I don't think hydrogen makes sense (Score 1) 281

Containing hydrogen is easy. You just build a hollow, spherical core of an aluminum superalloy, 12mm thick, surrounded by 654 concentric 1-atom-thick graphene shells. This provides the highest tensile strength of any material manufactured to date, and acts as a perfect rotational bearing.

Around this, you place a gyroscope constructed of a sphere of ultrapolished silicone, 2cm thick, plated on its interior with 7mm of niobium, and assembled from two fused hemispheres. The gyro itself is suspended in superfluid helium-4 at 1.95K, and rotates in a plane parallel to the surface of the Earth. At this temperature and pressure, quantum effects in the graphene lattice produce a composite material in a metastable state with a mean of 10^5 +/- 10^3 defects, which randomly arise and spontaneously self-repair. Reducing the pressure increases the stability exponentially, such that incredibly high continuous pressures and even higher impulse pressures are readily sustained: at 1.93K, the meteor that extincted the dinosaurs wouldn't scratch this thing.

Once mag drives are used to accelerate the gyro to above 150,000RPM, relativistic effects cause a special case of the Casimir effect to occur between two points on the niobium sphere. This effectively establishes a schwarzschild barrier around the inner core, effectively containing whatever is stored within.

Comment: Re:We don't need another distribution network. (Score 1) 281

Yeah, but to power an EV, you just take electricity. To power hydrogen, you take electricity, run it through an electrolysis system, then compress the output gas, pump it into a storage unit that uses active cooling with compressed coolants and advanced materials, transport it via lossy and active-cooled pipeline or trucks, and then transfer it into a mobile storage unit on your car.

Comment: Re:next gen batteries (Score 1) 281

You're both wrong.

It takes me 5 minutes to fill up my Mazda 3S, which gets about 300 miles from the tank (at 30mpg, I can hit 320; often I fill up at 290-295, almost on E but not hitting the idiot light yet). I have noticed modern gas stations run the pumps slower--about 1/4-1/2 speed--compared to the previous generation, which annoys me.

It takes 20 minutes for a Tesla Supecharger to put a 50% (150 mile) charge on the battery, or 40 minutes to put 300 miles on. That's 8 times the time. At home, a 240V outlet draws 40A and can charge in 2 hours; this is less important, as you can top off continuously at home. The practical importance of charging time is long-trip charge time where you won't be home in less than 300 miles of driving. Logistically, 300 miles at 60mph is 5 hours; you'll need to eat every 4 hours, and so a half hour charge (stopping to eat, charger in parking lot) would only replenish 75 miles, while a supercharger would replenish 150.

Because any installation can provide a supercharger, and the home installation is likely going to spend enough time hooked up to your car otherwise, supercharger installations with no home charging (long trips) are the only metric. It takes 8 times as long to charge a Tesla, compared to a gasoline car. Hybrid electric cars with a 25 pound 1 cylinder bio-diesel (food oil waste) engine are better for range, but bring the full logistics of managing a diesel engine (fuel tank, pumps, ECU, electronic ignition, exhaust management, etc.) and a lot of space usage.

Point is we don't need to think about how efficient the engine is, how many megatrons there are, or whatever. All we need to do is plug it in and charge it to 300 miles. Gasoline does this in 5-10 minutes; electric does this in 40.

Comment: Re:Where do you fill up? (Score 1) 281

Hot water heaters vent hot water. When you heat water, it expands. The water pushes backwards through the system into the cold water pipe, and back out to the mains. In systems where the mains is isolated by a backflow restrictor, code requires an expansion tank to accept roughly 5L of expansion.

Comment: Re:Where do you fill up? (Score 2) 281

Well, first you'd need to find a place with a nitrogen-cooled tank made out of a special alloy open-cell metal foam encased in a high-pressure-rated carbon fiber hull. Hydrogen is incredibly difficult to store, and requires specialized equipment and constant active cooling, which means running pumps and high-power apparatuses to continuously refine and condense liquid nitrogen and dry ice coolant.

Your car would store the hydrogen less efficiently: parking for a long time would drain your tank, so infrequent drivers will consume more fuel than frequent drivers. Electric cars do this, too, regardless of electronics; but even a NiMH battery can hold 70% of its charge after 1 year of disuse. Tesla drains too much power keeping standby electronics on standby. Gasoline sours, but you can add treatment to store it for years. Between electric and hydrogen, it's potentially a wash, unless hydrogen leaks much faster.

Beyond that, the fill-up method is roughly the same as gasoline, aside from needing to use a sealed, pressurized connector. Misaligning the connector will vent hydrogen, if it's misaligned in such a way as to satisfy the safety mechanism yet not gain positive seal. Fortunately, the car will likely contain a one-way valve (a ball on a spring, or a ball not on a spring but with a grate behind it such that internal pressure forces it up to seal), so your tank won't vent: it'll only open the valve when the pressure outside is greater than the tank pressure.

Comment: Re:Nope... Nailed It (Score 1) 185

by bluefoxlucid (#48434731) Attached to: It's Not Developers Slowing Things Down, It's the Process

Actually, this is all stuff known to project managers.

When a project is initiated, the Project Manager first creates a Project Charter. This is done by identifying stakeholders (people doing the work, people affected by the work, people receiving deliverables... any individual or group who affects, is affected by, or perceives itself to be affected by any activity or outcome of the project) and gathering preliminary project requirements. Essentially, the project manager talks to the stakeholders to roughly determine what we're trying to accomplish, how we're going to accomplish it, how much we want to spend, and how much time we're willing to take. That's written up as the charter.

After this, real requirements are gathered. Work is broken down in a Work Breakdown Structure, a hierarchical decomposition of deliverables in which each level is fully broken out into lower levels. The entire project is level 1; level 2 is the major deliverables (Including project management itself, as well as phases or components, testing, validation, documentation, hand-off, and final project closing); and those are broken out into the deliverables which make them up. The final level of deliverables is the Work Package, a complete unit of work which can be understood and managed. Work Packages are broken out into Tasks and Activities--things to do which can be assigned, and which are required to produce the Work Package.

To do all of this, the Project Manager must consult the Project Team. The Project Team will know what components go into building the deliverable output as requested. The project team will be able to estimate their competency and experience with the various components. The Project Manager will use historical information to come up with rough scheduling and budget numbers for each Work Package and Task; but the Project Team will raise issues such as that the historical information was in a wildly different context, that the people who did the work are not on this project, and so on, which means that the work may take more or less time. These factor into the baseline schedule and into the management and contingency reserves (the extra time allotted based on how likely a task should take--in theory, a programmer can write a decompression module in 4 hours, but it's 90% likely to take less than 5 hours, and a 90% success rate is targeted, so we budget 4h with a contingency reserve of 1h).

In the end, the engineers will inform the project manager of what can and can't be done, what effort goes into it, how long it may take, and so on. The Project Manager will have stakeholders prioritize deliverables, and then have them select which deliverables to cut from the project if they can't make time or budget. If the engineers tell you they simply can't build this in 5 months, you either give them 7 months or you give up enough requirements to shave 2 months off the project. You could also identify underutilization of resources in non-critical paths, and crash or fast-track the schedule by assigning more people to those tasks which may be done in parallel rather than in serial.

That's what managers are for.

Comment: Re: wont last (Score 2) 284

Because people are simple, and everything is both simple and complex. I can explain to you how to solve poverty; the solution is simple, but incredibly nuanced. It's a very short list of policy features, but it avoids an incredible number of policy features that would create sub-optimal or even destructive results. It relies on a handful of economic concepts which, when explained, amount to massively complex interconnected systems, which in turn come down to simple human behavioral psychology, which in turn becomes incredibly complex when examined deeper.

People are often keen to take the simplistic--supply and demand versus competition--and claim simple behaviors. Supply of houses? Prices will come down because more houses can be built, more apartments can be offered. This explanation ignores risk, ignores the cost risk of building more housing such that supply exceeds demand, ignores the nuanced scarcity of housing (there's plenty, but you can only get a given apartment or house at a given time, and they're all non-fungible), and ignores that people will routinely pay the common above-cost price even if some other market player has the same good cheaper. Prices don't just continuously drop when competition shows up; prices can even creep upwards in a competitive market, as competitors learn that a $500 good and a $515 good both sell, and then everyone sells it for $515 until some competitors start selling it for $530 and don't take a loss in sales volume.

People don't like this. They say, "No, you would lower your price to attract more business. If one person did it and then had more business than he could handle, and the others didn't drop prices, another competitor would enter the market at the low price." That doesn't fucking work.

Comment: Re:Build their economy? (Score 1) 142

by bluefoxlucid (#48433701) Attached to: Coal Plants Get New Lease On Life With Natural Gas
It seems to me a local utility can either generate power, mark up over cost, and pay taxes on profits; or import power, mark up over cost, and pay taxes on profits. These are the same. They claim they would lose jobs, but wasteful spending creates economic strain and reduces the total eventual jobs: in 5 years, moving to the cheaper option would provide a stronger and more robust economy.

There are never any bugs you haven't found yet.