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Comment: Re:Hello, the 1980s are calling, they caught your (Score 1) 184

by kesuki (#48939563) Attached to: New Study Says Governments Should Ditch Reliance On Biofuels

ok, we can grow enough algae to power all our diesel road fuel consumption. what about the energy to mine all the iron and to electro-magnetically extract it. what about to power all the computers, every iphone requires an infrastructure that is the equivalent of one refrigerator worth of power per user. what about computers that do jobs for humans, what about buildings necessary to shelter humans. what about roads, what about air transit?

sustainability is great, proving the technology works is great. but as long as sustainability isn't on the political agenda then we will never see it happen. as for the plastic, plastic can be made from corn, methane and a lot of other things besides oil. plastic also usually recycles well.

Comment: Re:Government Intervention (Score 1) 453

Europe and other government purchases are not driving Cisco and other equipment advances in speed. That's mostly capital investment. Euro governments (and US munincipalities) are leveraging this by way of uaving taxes to pay for it.
  few years down the road, it won't see so fast when quad streams, each of 4k video, to every house are the desire.

Then there's turnaround latency, need to have twitch games 3d generated at the server in a reasonably tiny time frame.

No, these city services, akin to water and sewer and electricity, will be reliable, but no longer on a timely upgrade path.

Comment: Re:track record (Score 2) 285

by Impy the Impiuos Imp (#48934835) Attached to: US Air Force Selects Boeing 747-8 To Replace Air Force One

I wondered that, too.

In any case, Boeing saw no business case for larger planes, while tons of room for smaller, direct jets. More to more airports with less hub crap.

The Airbus decision flabbergasted them. Officially, anyway. Cynics realized it was some European Union pride/multistate boondoggle as pieces were mandated to be made in most countries. Business case is irrelevant to politicians in such a situation. See also perennial money-loser SST.

Comment: Re:Can someone explainn (Score 1) 163

by ScentCone (#48934533) Attached to: Drone Maker Enforces No-Fly Zone Over DC, Hijacking Malware Demonstrated
The problem is that if the airframe is moving directly at the White House from, say, New York Ave, it could do so at ten feet above the ground. Would still clear the fence, but anybody on the roof of the White House opening up with any sort of AA or even conventional small arms fire would be, essentially, shooting right at hundreds of people, cars, trucks, and office buildings. NOT an easy problem to solve.

Comment: Re:Seems a bit unfair (Score 2) 163

by ScentCone (#48934445) Attached to: Drone Maker Enforces No-Fly Zone Over DC, Hijacking Malware Demonstrated

I think you mean to say, "If drones are illegal, only criminals will have drones".

Yes. And drones don't kill people, people kill people. It's actually kinda funny to watch a lot of normally "progressive" types who've always reflexively ridiculed the sport shooting types for their defensive postures regarding irrational gun laws ... suddenly find themselves in exactly the same predicament. "But I just want to do some fine art landscape photography from 50' feet up!" Uh huh, and I just want to break some clay pigeons. But we're BOTH evil now! How's it feel buddy!

Comment: Re:Can someone explainn (Score 1) 163

by ScentCone (#48934173) Attached to: Drone Maker Enforces No-Fly Zone Over DC, Hijacking Malware Demonstrated

And you think that's going to get by undetected?

Scenario: pop away some sort of cover on a flatbed truck a couple of blocks from the White House. Fire up a very un-sexy, easy to build hexa than can easy lift a few pounds. It could quickly self-navigate straight up to a couple hundred or more feet (these things can climb like rockets), above any local building tops, and then move horizontally towards the White House at the better part of 50mph. Who CARES if it can be detected? If there are people on the White House lawn doing some sort of camera op or press conference, that bird would be right over them in the blink of an eye, and could drop something nasty with shocking accuracy, within a meter of a typical presser podium. It would happen so fast that being detected or not doesn't really matter.

I love these machines. They're great for all sorts of fun and creative uses. But a smart, determined bad guy really could put them to some very evil, if innovative, use. And that's the point. New government limits on their use make the bad guys just laugh!

Comment: Re:Can someone explainn (Score 1) 163

by ScentCone (#48934101) Attached to: Drone Maker Enforces No-Fly Zone Over DC, Hijacking Malware Demonstrated

the payload of the DJI Phantom line is measured in low-double-digit grams

I have a pimped out Phantom. The extra payload it carries:

1) GCU
2) Gimbal
3) GoPro with Battery
4) Video Downlink TX with cloverleaf antenna
5) iOSD
6) Various related cables, mounting hardware

Which all adds up to almost 340g - and it still maneuvers like crazy, and stays up for an easy 15 minutes.

No, it's not a lot. But it's lot more than low-double-digits. My bigger rig can easily carry 8 or 9 pounds while climbing to hundreds of feet faster than you'd believe. And it can go horizontally at a pretty frightening speed.

Comment: Re:Can someone explainn (Score 3, Informative) 163

by ScentCone (#48930757) Attached to: Drone Maker Enforces No-Fly Zone Over DC, Hijacking Malware Demonstrated

What is the security risk posed by small drones? In your explanation please include "Drones are better than mortars at delivering explosives because..."

Because a drone can autonomously delivery a brick of C4 to within a meter of where you want it to go on your first try. And you can be miles away while it does that. "Miles away" is also handy if you're using it to deliver an aerosoled nerve agent or some bio-nasty substance over, say, a presidential press conference in the Rose Garden, or a speech on the steps of the Capital.

Comment: Re:kinda illegal already, by a rule referring to a (Score 1) 163

by ScentCone (#48930733) Attached to: Drone Maker Enforces No-Fly Zone Over DC, Hijacking Malware Demonstrated

Is it a law that they have to do it?

No, this is them annoying some of their customers (people who want to fly illegally in the DC no-fly zone) in an attempt to preempt knee-jerk over compensating by federal authorities. The feds would rather just ban the devices entirely, period.

Comment: Re:Seems a bit unfair (Score 4, Insightful) 163

by ScentCone (#48930729) Attached to: Drone Maker Enforces No-Fly Zone Over DC, Hijacking Malware Demonstrated
In the Washington DC area, flights of any kind are and have been for many years very severely controlled. The DC Flight Restriction Zone (the "DC FRZ") is a 30-mile-wide circle in side of which it is illegal to fly any sort of remote control device of any kind at any altitude. So, yes, it sucks to be in the suburbs, seemingly a long way away from the sensitive downtown areas that include the White House, the Capital, Reagan Airport, the CIA campus, and all of those other high-profile places and people ... but, too bad! Federal offense with stiff fines and possible jail time if you're caught. That includes kids with $20 bought-it-at-the-mall 6" pink plastic helicopters playing around in their back yard. Yes, it's ridiculous. On the other hand, it's a rare week when a trio of big helicopters doing runs like the one between the White House and Camp David don't go thundering over the tree tops of suburban Maryland. You can hear them coming quite a ways out, and if you were prepared, you could easily have a modest quadcopter or more substantial hexa up to over 1000' feet and be at the same altitiude as (or above) Marine One by the time it and its decoy siblings flew directly over your house on the way to a routine presidential golf outing. That's the sort of thing that has had the DoD, Secret Service, HSA, and FAA all uptight. Mind you, a person flying a more or less radar-invisible foam and plastic RC plane could have done that many years ago, too.

And so we have a 700 square mile area where flying a 3-pound DJI quadcopter is very, very illegal, and has been for years. That DJI is updating their GPS-aware flight control firmware to make it impossible to fly their devices in that area is a sign that they don't want their products to be simply banned outright. We are not at the sweet spot of rational rules and implementation on this one, not even close. And of course someone with true mal intent isn't going to be bothered by the rules or the firmware limitations anyway.

Comment: Re:Demonstrates the need... (Score 5, Insightful) 218

by Impy the Impiuos Imp (#48927481) Attached to: Anonymous No More: Your Coding Style Can Give You Away

You want scary? The same can be applied to general text on the Internet, tying posters on different sotes together, including anonymous (not your real name avatar) to a site with your real name.

Which the NSA probably has churning away on its databases. Which probably does little more than add confirmation of said links from watching and recording all traffic to any and all of a billion IP addresses.

And I, for one, welcome our new panopticon overlords who won't abuse it, not one of their thousand agents, because they're supposed to check a got-a-warrant box on a piece of paper before choosing to abuse it.

Moneyliness is next to Godliness. -- Andries van Dam