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Comment: Re:Mr President we have a flamethrower gap (Score 1) 181

by jfeldredge (#49362443) Attached to: Commercial Flamethrower Successfully Crowdfunded
Judging from the length of the flame being thrown in the demonstration video, I suspect a fair number of new owners will collect Darwin Awards. If the wind shifts, or you get splashback from a wall or earth bank ahead of you, you could easily set yourself on fire. If you then get an uncontrolled ignition of the fuel tank, it is definitely crispy critter time.

Comment: Re: Slight change in title, if I may (Score 1) 326

by jfeldredge (#45634509) Attached to: Nobody Builds Reactors For Fun Anymore
A hobbiest who built his own working hydrogen-fusion reactor has given presentations at a couple of Phreaknics (an annual hacker convention in Nashville,TN, USA). One year he brought the reactor with him. Admittedly, he has not yet succeeded in generating more power than the reactor consumes, but neither have the large fusion experiments.

Comment: Cop didn't fully state the law (Score 1) 1440

by jfeldredge (#44950383) Attached to: Georgia Cop Issues 800 Tickets To Drivers Texting At Red Lights
According to what I can find online, Georgia law forbids HAND-HELD use of a cell phone while driving, for whatever purpose, and texting while driving, whether the phone is hand-held or hands-free. HANDS-FREE use of a cell phone for talking or using the GPS app is legal. So, if your phone is in a mounting bracket, you can legally use it as a GPS while driving.

Comment: Re: Why not just 0? (Score 1) 996

by jfeldredge (#43734367) Attached to: NTSB Recommends Lower Drunk Driving Threshold Nationwide: 0.05 BAC
So, you don't have any studies to back up your claim that Americans have a high rate of worm infestations, just your guess. One common symptom of worm infestation is that the patient eats a greater than normal quantity of food, yet remains skinny, except for a bloated belly caused by the worm's growth. Given that one of the primary health concerns in America is the number of obese people, I would say that there is strong evidence that most Americans DO NOT have intestinal worms. Also, if alcohol is the most effective vermifuge known, then why is it not the vermifuge of choice around the world?

Comment: Re:Glowing Mosquitos (Score 1) 328

by jfeldredge (#43593891) Attached to: Genetically Modified Plants To Produce Natural Lighting

Oh, it will keep working in countries where evolution is just a theory.

Bert

This will only work if the people who don't believe in evolution choose, therefore, not to swat the glowing mosquitos. Otherwise, the genes for glowing will quickly be bred out of the population. I know a number of people who say that they believe in microevolution (survival of the fittest within a species), but who deny that a series of small changes can add up to macroevolution (a new species).

Comment: Re:How is this a Nigerian scam... (Score 1) 312

by jfeldredge (#34630332) Attached to: Nigerian Email Scam Victim Sues Bank, Loses Appeal
Advance fee frauds have been around for over 500 years. In the days of Queen Elizabeth the First, this was known as a "Spanish Prisoner Fraud". England and Spain were at war, and some English con men would claim "Lord So-and-so has been imprisoned by the Spanish. If you will pay to bribe his jailers into letting him go, he will richly reward you when he gets back to England." Of course, the "bribe money" would simply go into the con-man's pocket, not to Spain.

Comment: Re:Yet another great /. science discussion kicks o (Score 1) 224

by jfeldredge (#30434154) Attached to: Mediterranean Might Have Filled In Months
Before the sill broke at Gibraltar, there would have been a salt lake in the deepest part of the Mediterranean valley (since water escaped only by evaporation). Even today, the amount of water that evaporates from the Mediterranean is greater than the amount that flows into the Mediterranean from rivers. The difference is made up by an inflow of water from the Atlantic Ocean. There is also a smaller outflow current of extra-salty water. During World War II, Allied submarines were able to use these two underwater currents to sneak into or out of the Mediterranean without running their motors, thus being silent and more difficult for German and Italian military vessels patrolling the surface to detect.

Comment: Re:Other uses (Score 1) 90

by jfeldredge (#29675771) Attached to: IBM Researchers Working Toward Cheap, Fast DNA Reader
Insurance companies have been known to reject claims as pre-existing conditions, even when it is obvious that this is false, in hopes that the patient will give up and pay for the treatment themselves. CNN had a recent news item about an insurance company initially refusing to pay for a broken wrist, claiming that the injury was a pre-existing condition.

Comment: Re:Run Linux much? (Score 1) 655

by jfeldredge (#28088829) Attached to: Ridiculous Software Bug Workarounds?
I upgraded my laptop from Ubuntu 8.04 to Ubuntu 9.04 today. It totally screwed up the X configuration, probably due to misidentifying the video chip set. It picked a video mode that the hardware didn't support, resulting in the right and bottom portions of the virtual screen being off the physical screen. I tried picking a lower screen resolution, only to end up with a totally-garbled display. I then tried to manually reconfigure X using dpkg-reconfigure xorg-xconf, only to find out that, in version 9.04, this only allows you to reconfigure the keyboard, not the video setup. After tweaking the settings for about an hour, without ever getting a readable X display, I gave up and reinstalled Ubuntu 8.04. Fortunately, I did have /home as a separate file system, so my personal settings were intact. I just had to reinstall a few programs.

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