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Comment: Re:We have already figured most of this out. (Score 1) 361

by danbert8 (#49473261) Attached to: Can Civilization Reboot Without Fossil Fuels?

Yes, but most of that steam was generated by coal. No coal and no oil would drastically reduce transportable energy which is what you need on a construction site. Development would still happen, but at a much slower pace.

Of course considering fossil fuels ARE a renewable resource on a geologic scale, it would be entirely possible for another civilization to take advantage of it a few hundred million years from now.

Comment: Re:Reason: for corporations, by corporations (Score 1) 489

by danbert8 (#49447881) Attached to: Reason: How To Break the Internet (in a Bad Way)

Incorrect in most jurisdictions:

Some lawyers thrive on the fact that cracks in sidewalks can be excuses to sue landowners. Most sidewalk maintenance is the responsibility of the adjacent property owner, especially in residential areas. In most locations the city can come out and repair sidewalks, but only after repeated repair notices and it will generally be billed back to the property owners.

Comment: Re:Reason: for corporations, by corporations (Score 1) 489

by danbert8 (#49446157) Attached to: Reason: How To Break the Internet (in a Bad Way)

The problem is that there is a monopoly. These communications companies can control your access to the rest of the modern world and there isn't anything you can do about it. Unless there is competition, Comcast, Time Warner, AT&T, Verizon, and others can effectively control who you associate with and how. Comcast currently offers me shit for service and effectively forces me to bundle television service because it's cheaper to get the internet with than without. They also charge a ridiculous "connection fee" for some guy to hook up my modem and router for me and make a phone call to turn the service on.

But what choice do I have? AT&T is coming to the area soon and will probably offer awesome deals to switch, which will all disappear after a year where they will adopt the same shitty policies as Comcast.

The internet is the same as the phone lines. It's a link between you and another party. The provider should not be able to control or degrade the link between two parties and the government has to set this as the requirement. If they need to change their "unlimited" (limited to 200GB/mo) "high speed" (when there is no traffic) plans to a usage based system, so be it. You should pay for what you use, but not who you get it from.

Comment: Re:Reason: for corporations, by corporations (Score 1) 489

by danbert8 (#49446101) Attached to: Reason: How To Break the Internet (in a Bad Way)

Americans might be willing to do those jobs, but we'll never know. The "social safety net" prevents them from even considering taking a crappy job. They won't starve or live on the street if they don't work, so why would they take a crappy job? People jumping across the border from Mexico WILL starve or live on the street if they don't work crappy jobs, so they do.

Comment: Re:Reason: for corporations, by corporations (Score 1) 489

by danbert8 (#49446081) Attached to: Reason: How To Break the Internet (in a Bad Way)

There needs to be an equivalent "Godwin's Law" for injecting Somalia into an argument against libertarianism... Also libertarians don't believe in NO regulations, they believe in a minimum level of regulations.

That being said, I completely disagree with many people who say they are libertarians and don't support net neutrality. I disagree with this article, and I disagree with many of the libertarian arguments. At the end of the day, the government does and SHOULD have the ability to regulate means of communication to ensure that people's private dealings between two parties are not controlled by a 3rd party. You could claim as these libertarians do that a private company can do whatever it pleases, but as has been stated before, there is no competition. You don't like Comcast's terms and services? Well you might as well live in a cave then because you cannot operate as a member of modern society without internet access.

The reality is that we live in an interconnected world. The government has a role to ensure that the interconnections are free and open so that a company can't control how and with whom you associate.

Comment: Biggest Extinction Events in Planetary History (Score 2) 414


Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event

As originally proposed by a team of scientists led by Luis Alvarez, it is now generally believed that the K–Pg extinction was triggered by a massive comet/asteroid impact and its catastrophic effects on the global environment, including a lingering impact winter that made it impossible for plants and plankton to carry out photosynthesis.

Triassic–Jurassic extinction event

Gradual climate change, sea-level fluctuations or a pulse of oceanic acidification[6] during the late Triassic reached a tipping point. However, this does not explain the suddenness of the extinctions in the marine realm.
Asteroid impact, but so far no impact crater of sufficient size has been dated to coincide with the Triassic–Jurassic boundary.

Permian–Triassic extinction event (the one claimed here)

There are several proposed mechanisms for the extinctions; the earlier phase was probably due to gradual environmental change, while the latter phase has been argued to be due to a catastrophic event.

Late Devonian extinction

The causes of these extinctions are unclear. Leading theories include changes in sea level and ocean anoxia, possibly triggered by global cooling or oceanic volcanism. The impact of a comet or another extraterrestrial body has also been suggested.

Ordovician–Silurian extinction events

The immediate cause of extinction[which?] appears to have been the movement of Gondwana into the south polar region. This led to global cooling, glaciation and consequent sea level fall. The falling sea level disrupted or eliminated habitats along the continental shelves.

TL:DR -> Maybe some major extinction events were caused by climate shifts, but all were theorized to be gradual shifts, not sudden. The sudden extinction events are generally due to volcanic or impact events.

Comment: Re:Arbitrary judgement of driving style (Score 1) 73

This study has some interesting data, but more interesting is the conclusions they draw...

Within a year after the Federal Government ended any role in setting speed limits, 23 states raised their rural Interstate speed limits to 70 or 75 mph. Many studies showed that this increased fatalities. One study compared changes in the number of fatalities for the same distance of travel for states that increased their limits to states that kept their limits at the then prior limit of 65 mph. The states that increased speed limits to 70 mph experienced a 35% increase in fatality rate, and the states that increased speed limits to 75 mph a 38% increase.

This is not based on any reputable studies. Speed limits across the US have been going up and traffic fatalities by any measure are going down. There were all kinds of protests and news articles about how dangerous it was to increase Ohio's speed limit to 70mph a few years ago before it went into effect. It went up, fatalities have gone down (but not significantly), and now all of them are back again to protest proposals to raise it again to 75mph.

But I digress on the speed limits... Their figure 9-1 (inconveniently not included in the text version) cannot be verified and they do not cite the source of this data and note that it only included drivers from one organization in 3 states. That screams to me cherry picked data to match their conclusion. Similar to all the citations from insurance institutes for high speed limit dangers. Insurance companies make a lot of money off speeding tickets raising people's rates, they would hate to see that venue stream dry up. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has done several studies and their findings have primarily been that people ignore speed limits and thus they were unable to conclude anything about higher and lower speed limits.

I don't deny that some people who go to the track drive like assholes. But then plenty of people drive like assholes that think they are race car drivers. I agree that there is no way to conclusively judge a person's driving ability and habits. However, my point is still that insurance companies make no attempt to measure these things other than bullshit "defensive driving" courses. The reason they don't is because it serves them no financial interest. Why would they collect more data and do extra analysis to reduce rates for highly trained drivers or well maintained cars?

Comment: Re:Arbitrary judgement of driving style (Score 1) 73

I don't drive like I do on the track on the roads. On the track I try to drive to 80-90% of the limits of the car. On the road I keep it to under 50%. It just so happens that 50% of my limits (based on car, rubber, and brakes) are at the limit for the average car. I am also not saying that this should be an exception just for me. There are plenty of auto enthusiasts out there with far more driver training and experience than the average driver and none of it counts toward insurance.

My point is that insurance companies don't factor in driver ability and mechanical aspects of the car which are more directly related to safety than arbitrary limits on braking, cornering, and acceleration. What you are using as your excuse for why it shouldn't be factored in are mechanical damage and acts of god which cannot be prevented or predicted regardless of how close one is driving to the limit. Sure driving to the limit might put more stress on parts, but that might just cause a failure at 100k miles instead of 200k, and as I already pointed out, I replace parts that wear down due to hard driving on a regular basis. I don't race on the street, and I condemn those that do. But I'd be lying if I didn't say I drove spiritedly when the conditions are good, traffic is light, and I'm in the mood. And nothing about that is any more unsafe than driving in general.

Comment: Re:Arbitrary judgement of driving style (Score 1) 73

by danbert8 (#49438655) Attached to: Phone App That Watches Your Driving Habits Leads To Privacy Concerns

My brake pads are also better than average, my brake fluid is changed several times a year (instead of never in the average vehicle). Braking hard consistently allows me to keep track of the condition of my brakes.

Insurance agents have no power, desire, or ability to adjust your rates. All they can do is input data into a computer. And they can only input data that the computer is programmed to receive. Sure there are plenty of people out there who think they can drive better than they can. That's why you shouldn't take their word for it. A racing competition license or even records of driver's education from an actual sanctioned automotive organization would be sufficient for evidence of superior driver skill. Far more so than the certificate of completion from Bob's Defensive Driving Academy where they tell you to follow the speed limit religiously and accelerate slowly.

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