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Comment harbingers of failure are we nerds (Score 1) 300

We nerd *know* tech, and trend to pick technically superior product. Layman pick items with seemingly better benefit-to-cost ratio(cheaper), with their limited knowledge. Just think of Firewire VS USB battle if you need example.

technical superior product(Firewire) -> higher manufacturing cost -> more expensive product -> less market share -> lose out

technical inferior product(USB) -> lower manufacturing cost -> cheaper product -> larger market share -> economy of scale+ecosystem effect -> win

TLDR: we pick a product because its better, but the same reason cause the product lose out to a cheaper competitor. Thats why we just can't have nice things.

Comment Leidenfrost effect? (Score 1) 26

"chunks of warming dry ice may also break off from the crests of dunes and skid down slopes. This is no ordinary tumble; according to the model, the bases of the chunks are continually sublimating, resulting in a hovercraftlike motion that gouges the dune while propelling the ice down slopes"
sounds like Leidenfrost effect, although this effect normally involves a liquid.

Comment Re:less useful how? Re:The larger, the less useful (Score 1) 108

That "divergence over time" actually occurs not that long ago. Right before WW2 everyone on the planet that use Chinese characters use the 1 and only 1 glyph, traditional Chinese. That includes China, Japan, Korea, Vietnam, Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan.

After WW2 China and Japan tries to simplify the Chinese characters in separate effort, resulting in completely different glyphs and the shitty state of CJK coding we see now.

Korea and Vietnam largely abandoned Chinese characters, may be except for person and place names for clarification reasons.

Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan all use the same pre-WW2 traditional Chinese glyphs. Thus they have no ambiguity or trouble for exchanging text at all.

FFS just use traditional Chinese glyphs if one want to exchange text with other kanji user. It is the "true" Chinese that everyone in Sinosphere understand for last 3000 years.

Comment Re:"JUST" 12 light years? LOL. (Score 1) 420

Actually you can still use gravitational assist with the sun. Burning your fuel at the perihelion will give you far more delta-V than the same burn at aphelion. Simple explanation: part of the gravitational potential energy of the fuel is converted into kinetic energy of the spacecraft; with the burnt fuel being "left-over" at a much lower orbit than before.

Some programming languages manage to absorb change, but withstand progress. -- Epigrams in Programming, ACM SIGPLAN Sept. 1982