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Comment They can still be useful (Score 1) 278

Pagers tend to have better reception than cell phones, at least fairly recently when I last looked this up for my own curiosity. Also, many paging companies have "TAP" servers that you can dial into with a modem to send pages. This is could make a nice last-resort fallback for when a data center has lost network access and you can still provide outbound alerting via a backup landline.

Comment Why is the splash screen cyan? (Score 1) 98

It seems like emulated old versions of Windows end up with cyan where they're supposed to be white, and it's been this way for ages. I used to run Win 3.1 under PC-Task on my Amiga to handle one specific business app, and the splash screens even back then were cyan instead of white. That's still true in my browser just now when I launched a couple of the article's emulators. Why would that be? Is there some bug in ancient VGA hardware that Windows exploited to render white instead of greenish-blue?

Comment Re:Overturn States' Rights? (Score 2) 137

So, when will a California resident be able to purchase a non CARB compliant motor vehicle?

Hopefully, approximately the same time it becomes OK for me to crap on your lawn. Your encrypted messages to your wife don't harm me or the state. Your high-pollution vehicles make it harder for me to breathe.

Comment Re:Sorry Assholes (Score 1) 444

I disagree. If he came in and took over a low UID for the sake of appearances, I'd personally write off a lot of his messages as PR attempts. But to join in through the same route as everyone else to earn his rep by participating, not by owning a low UID*? I respect that.

* But don't underestimate the importance of that. They give you a Ferrari each year on your anniversary.

Comment Re:So what should we do? (Score 2) 564

Also, the (possibly trained) driver isn't going to be the only person to ever sit behind the wheel. Valets, mechanics, and friends will all take turns driving over the years. Is Joe Driver going to remember that the pattern he's learned and committed to muscle memory over months of driving is unexpected, and to warn everyone he gives the keys to? This is bad UI, pure and simple.

Comment Re: In all honesty... (Score 1) 110

I use a Core 2 Duo (1.86 GHz, 4GB RAM, 128GB SSD) MacBook Air (2010) as a daily driver, updated to the latest 10.11.2 OS X. Works fine with 2 browsers, MySQL
(10GB indexed database), Ruby on Rails, Webrick, Adobe Acrobat Pro... I often have at least 4 apps open at once (right now: Acrobat Pro, Word, Firefox, TextWrangler, and Clean Text). I have a newer Core i5 8GB MBA I leave at home (I commute via metro and the C2D is "expendable"), so I could use a higher performance machine, just haven't felt the need to. Of course, if I'm going to do anything hefty in Photoshop, final cut pro, etc., I fire up a 3.4 gigahertz Quad core I five Hackintoshâ¦

Comment Re:Remember the NASA Wind Turbines? (Score 1) 190

Current blades are trucked in one piece (per blade) which is impressive to see. Three of them were parked on I-5 outside of Patterson, California a few months ago. There are a lot of net videos and photos which convey the scale.

Even at the current size they can't get through many highway interchanges and local intersections. The larger ones won't be able to ship in one piece at all.

Comment Remember the NASA Wind Turbines? (Score 4, Interesting) 190

NASA Wind Turbines approached this scale in the '80's. Unfortunately, this was a previously-unexplored area of aerodynamics for NASA, and they had mechanical stress and noise problems (including subsonics) and were all demolished. I think there was one near Vallejo, CA being taken down when I got to Pixar in '87, and one in Boone, NC, which famously rattled windows and doors.

The art has since improved. I took a ride to the top of the turbine at Grouse Mountain, that was fun! That's the only one I have heard of where you can actually get to see it from the top.

Comment Starting out with the wrong assumptions (Score 2) 165

This is starting out with the wrong assumptions.

Design a brick system that can be produced with 3-D printers, and will hold together when fabricated within the tolerances of an SLA printer. Forget FDM, it's too low precision and SLA is already achieving an equal or lower cost of manufacture compared with FDM.

LEGO is manufactured to astonishingly high precision, but I am not convinced that this is the only way to make a brick system.

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