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Comment: Re:Aerial or underground ? (Score 1) 516

by hjf (#48466437) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Why Is the Power Grid So Crummy In So Many Places?

Where I live, both 13.2KV and 220V wires used to hang from the same posts. 13.2KV ones much higher. During a storm with heavy winds, I used to see them swing and arc and boom - power was out. Until the storm ended and then they restored power.

In the 90s they did a massive rebuilding of the distribution grid. All 13.2KV lines were buried and all 220V "naked" wire was replaced with insulated, quadruple, "twisted" cable hanging mostly from house fronts (mostly city houses one right next to another).

This eliminated almost all of the storm problems. No more wind or lightning knocking down power. Sometimes yes, you hear a very loud thunder and power goes out but that's most likely the product of a direct or very nearby hit that makes protections trip.

Unfortunately now we have other problems. Growing pains. Too many new apartment buildings taking a lot of juice and the grid isn't being upgraded. On very hot days power goes out and you have all sorts of brownouts and blackouts. This is sheer corruption: every apartment building, over a certain number of houses, is supposed to have its own 13.2KV->220V transformer but they just pay some power company officials (yes, state-owned company) and they hook em up to 220V. Suddenly you have 60 new houses sucking juice from the already loaded transformer...

Comment: Re:Considering the success Nintendo has had. . . (Score 1) 61

by hjf (#48436261) Attached to: The Nintendo DS Turns 10

You don't talk to kids, do you?

Remember when ALL YOU WANTED was your own computer?
Kids are over that.
They're also over the ALL I WANT IS A LAPTOP

Now, all they want is a tablet. Kids don't want PCs anymore. It's unbelievable.

And even worse: many don't even want a tablet. they want just a smartphone.

Comment: Re:On the other hand... (Score 2) 700

by hjf (#48206837) Attached to: FTDI Reportedly Bricking Devices Using Competitors' Chips.

No, it's because if they release a firmware that just refuses to work, the people that made these fakes will just release hacked drivers, based on FTDI's.
FTDI wants to destroy your hardware so you, as a consumer, will go to the manufacturer of your device. This will eventually teach them to follow the "pedigree" of their chips, and buy them from reputable sources. And not from "the cheapest seller in china".

Comment: Re:On the other hand... (Score 1) 700

by hjf (#48206807) Attached to: FTDI Reportedly Bricking Devices Using Competitors' Chips.

Huh? This is criminal? But "impersonating" a chip isn't?

I'm pretty sure DMCA or friends WON'T let you, legally, make a chip that pretends to be another chip. Especially if it's not marked "compatible" but it's just a plain FAKE.

So some company makes a fake Ford, which has acceleration problems. It crashes, kills someone, and Ford is to blame because it had a Ford badge? ...

The idle man does not know what it is to enjoy rest.