Please create an account to participate in the Slashdot moderation system


Forgot your password?

+ - Montana Lawmakers Propose 85 Mph Speed Limit On Interstates

Submitted by (3830033) writes "AP reports that Montana lawmakers are drafting bills that would raise the daytime speed limit on Montana interstate highways from 75 to 80 and possibly as high as 85 mph. “I just think our roads are engineered well, and technology is such we can drive those roads safely,” says Art Wittich noting that Utah, Wyoming and Idaho have raised their speed limits above 75, and they haven't had any problems and drivers on German autobahns average about 84 mph. State Senator Scott Sales says he spent seven months working in the Bakken oil patch, driving back and forth to Bozeman regularly. “If I could drive 85 mph on the interstate, it would save an hour,” says Sales. “Eighty-five would be fine with me."

A few years ago Texas opened a 40 mile stretch on part of a toll road called the Pickle Parkway between Austin and San Antonio. The tolled bypass was supposed to help relieve the bottleneck around Austin but the highway was built so far to the east that practically nobody used it. In desperation, the state raised the toll road speed limit to 85 mph, the fastest in the nation. "The idea was that drivers could drop the top, drop the hammer, crank the music and fly right past Austin," says Wade Goodyn. "It's a beautiful, wide-open highway — but it's empty, and the builders are nearly bankrupt.""

Comment: Re:Oh, My. (Score 1) 252

by io333 (#46172641) Attached to: North Korea's Home-Grown Operating System Mimics OS X

Old user here from way back logging in for the first time in ages just to echo the above comment. Dice, if you don't like things the way they've been since you were in diapers do us all a favor and sell the place to someone who appreciates that an item of quality ought not be melted down and reformed just to suit the fashion of the day. Just take what money you can get, and move on please.

Comment: I made prediction 10 years ago. 10 years from now (Score 3, Insightful) 911

by io333 (#33270204) Attached to: Convicted NY Drunk Drivers Need Ignition Interlocks

10 years ago I typed somewhere on the net, and I could probably find it if I tried really hard, that the way things were going, pretty soon someone would require a breathalizer wired into the ignition of a car to make it start after have a DWI. Lots of folks told me I was full of sh*t and it would never happen. Our culture has changed so much in the last decade that now having an interlock seems like a good thing to do to lots of people. Hardly anyone can remember that only 10 years ago almost no one at all would have supported this.

Now my new prediction. In 10 years ALL cars will require breath testing before it will start. I'll try to remember that I put it on slashdot... but will I still be able to search for anonymous postings then? Probably not. I guess that's my second prediction for the next 10 years.

Comment: I had a car with real, reproducable sudden acceler (Score 0, Troll) 930

by io333 (#32898956) Attached to: Toyota Sudden Acceleration Is Driver Error

In 1988 or so I had a Pontiac Fiero that when you turned the cruise control on (just switching immediately when switching from "off" to "on"), the gas pedal would pin itself to the floor and the engine would go WIDE OPEN. Now this was easily and immediately remedied by switching the cruise control off again, but it DID HAPPEN TO ME. Electronic devices screw up constantly. Did you ever used and old MIDI instrument, that when it crashed all the data outputs would just start throwing data like crazy and all the notes would play at max volume continuously? Older musicians know this was common.

Also, I read that the reports of sudden acceleration in Toyotas have ONLY come from cars with U.S. made ECUs, and NEVER with Japanese made ECUs... I somehow doubt that all of the people supposedly "faking" look at their ECU first before determining whether to make a false claim.

Do I know for certain whether or not this is a real problem? No. But when electronics lock up, and they do all the time, anything can happen.

I was very wary when they started taking away accelerator cables, as I understand electronics all too well and prefer to never trust them with my life -- Airbus prefers to differ in their opinion, so I try to always use Boeing. And I will certainly NEVER BUY A CAR WITH FLY BY WIRE STEERING!!!!!!!!

Comment: how to hang a swing (Score 1) 571

by io333 (#32867084) Attached to: The Creativity Crisis

when i was a kid, there were three channels, black and white tv only & they sucked, no kids watched more than 1 hr tv a day, if that.

so we played. outside. all the time. there was no such thing as crime, it simply didn't happen in our town (not one murder in 250+ years... until recently of course)

so there was this pond (the pond is gone, it's now a forced housing development for low income minorities to be integrated into towns deemed "too white" by an NJ judge), and a tree over it with a branch maybe 75 feet over the water, & so we were wondering, how in the world can we get a rope up there so we can swing over the pond and jump in from the rope (we were all about 9-12 years old). the tree was unclimbable (we were all very good at tree climbing -- how many kids have the upper body strength today to climb trees?)

It took us two days to figure it out, but that rope was still there until the low income housing developers came in and cut down the forest, filled in the pond, and put the stream that fed it into underground pipes. i leave it as an exercise to your imagination how we did it -- suffice to say we would have all been put into psychological counseling and put on meds for YEARS if some kids tried the same thing today. we had so much fun swinging into the pond!

Our culture is 100% the opposite of what it was 50 years ago. Everything socially then that was accepted as normal and right is now abnormal and wrong, and visa versa. How anyone can expect this country to continue to go upward, when the culture that was driving us to the stars is now, by design and intention, completely the opposite of the society that was capable of doing that?

Now certainly, back then, the culture SUCKED for a lot of people. It sucked if you were gay, and probably sucked if you were black too (although black families stayed together then), so it is probably better for a lot of previously marginalized groups now because of the changes we made. But those changes were made, and cannot be undone. There were choices we made as a society - that inclusiveness was better than achievement, than elimination of risk was better than solving a problem, etc, etc -- thousands of choices, many of them now hard coded into law.

It has been interesting to watch it all.

Comment: Re:How big a telescope do we need to see cities? (Score 1) 189

by io333 (#32744176) Attached to: First Direct Photo of Exoplanet Confirmed

ATLAST is interesting, it will detect "signatures" of life. That's not what I'm talking about, I'm thinking something that could look at a planet 100 light years away and photograph "people" (!) walking around on the streets? Can somebody calculate how big it would have to be? Say it's 500 meters... well then let's just build a 500 meter scope of some sort and put it on the moon, or wherever. It would be the greatest technological challenge of all time maybe, but with the greatest rewards of knowledge of all time too!

Comment: How big a telescope do we need to see cities? (Score 2, Insightful) 189

by io333 (#32743972) Attached to: First Direct Photo of Exoplanet Confirmed

I've been wondering for twenty years at least: how big a telescope do we need to build, in space, or on the dark side of the moon, or even on earth, to see cities on an earthlike planet somewhere out there?

And why are we not building one instead of wasting all the money on welfare, manned space exploration of a our mostly dead solar system, and more missiles so we can blow this place earth up even more times than we already can (I think we destroy the earth up to 6 times now?)

The main problem with our space program is that for 100 years we've been stuck with the rocket equation and 2% at best payloads. Ion engines give a little more hope for an interstellar probe someday...

If we found some more living earths out there, maybe our best and brightest might expend their brainpower on coming up with a better engine for space travel, rather than investment banking and law.

So how big a telescope do we need? Let's start building it!

Only through hard work and perseverance can one truly suffer.