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Comment I try to endure ads, I really do (Score 1) 307

Every time I get a new computer I see how long I can go without an ad-blocker. Starts out okay, but within 2-3 days there are just too many auto-playing, flashing, popover distractions. I feel bad, but the ads make me feel worse. If ads could be low-key text that is targeted to my interests, they could add value. As it stands, there are too many obnoxious, intrusive, and irrelevant ads to make it bearable. (This is why we can't have nice things).

Comment Re:Yeah!!! (Score 1) 210

Speaking as a home-distiller, I have found that no matter how stringently I control the ingredients and process, every batch of whiskey comes out different. Indeed, this is why commercial whisky producers employ blend masters who combine the variations from each cask into a consistent blend that matches their signature flavor palette. Also, commercial distillers age their whisky for years, with the changes in temperature and barometric pressure causing the casks to 'breathe' and thus alter the flavor. The 'aging' process attempted in space could not even begin to approximate the commercial aging process. So it is no surprise that the space batch tasted different. It would have been a much greater surprise if it hadn't.

Comment Ah, the good ole days (Score 3, Insightful) 74

Nowadays we wring our hands and tsk-tsk the loss of old film reels, books, and magazines, fearing the loss of part of our culture. In the future, people will yearn for the golden days of yore, when an inappropriate remark might elicit a titter of embarrassed laughter before vanishing into the fog of entropy.

Comment Re:Flywheels (Score 1) 299

Of course, if your house gets SWATted and the cops shoot your dog and a round happens to hit your battery pack, there is likely to be a sub-optimal discharge from them as well. I imagine pretty much any energy storage mechanism will have a similar problem. If you're storing enough energy to power a house, you're storing enough energy to be dangerously inconvenient if it's all released at once.

Comment Re:Here's to hoping they don't find oil (Score 1) 152

Think of the energy and building material that would give. All we'd need is for the molten magma stream to boil some water on the way out, and while still molten, be transported to the site of whatever massive construction project we choose. Maybe tie the two together, using some fancy Leidenfrost effect to keep the hot lava flowing on a cushion of steam. Once the lava gets to its destination, huge bots with chilled trowels would form it into walls or sculptures. With enough magma to fill the grand canyon, we could build an urban area big enough to cover most of Wyoming. Make the buildings free to homesteaders who agree to bring the buildings up to code. Name it 'Magma, Wyoming' or something. Also do a monument like Rushmore, but featuring all the presidents. Make each head the size of a mountain and call the new range The Presidentials. See? Lemons into lemonade.

Comment Re: Too expensive. (Score 1) 112

Curiously, I use MetroPCS, another MVNO that uses T-Mobile towers. MetroPCS only charges $5 for the first 2.5GB and $5/GB after that for tethered data. Since they're using the same towers as Google, you'd think the big G could at least be competitive with existing MVNOs using the same equipment. Also, it is interesting to note that at the 35 mbps LTE speed I get, I can suck down 1 GB in under 4 minutes. At $10 per four minutes of data, Google is asking more than some phone sex operators.

The gent who wakes up and finds himself a success hasn't been asleep.