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Comment: Re:the real question is... (Score 3, Interesting) 228

by jtara (#47365891) Attached to: Nathan Myhrvold's Recipe For a Better Oven

I am familiar with Sous-vide, but don't like the texture it produces. Unless it is Filet Mignon, then that jelly like texture is desirable...

If it's jelly it's been cooked too long.

I cook ribs, flank steak, lamb shanks, 48-72 hours. Time should be reduced if marinated or other techniques have been used to break-down proteins.

Chicken typically no more than 4 hours, preferably no more than 2. Fine steaks no more than 4. (I cook a thick prime aged ribeye 4 hours, because of the lack of moisture. Wet-aged should not cook as long.)

Fish typically no more than 1/2 hour. You cannot cook fish Sous Vide' to food safety standards unless you like it flakey. But I do it anyway at 117f. (If you would eat it raw, try it sous vide').

BTW, simple temperature-based food-safety standards are extremely dumbed-down. They are designed to provide safety with almost no cooking time at the indicated temperature. Sous vide' typically uses (FDA-approved) time/temperature curves for pasteurization. (Sous vide' is not a great choice for cooking meat immune-compromised individuals, but, then again, neither is *any* cooking technique - you are just going to over-cook the meat in order the sterilize. OTOH, vegetable cooking temperatures are much higher and would be fine (180F or so.) but not as often used for vegetables.

I generally use a slow indirect heat to get to the desired done-ness, then hit it with high heat.

Pretty much the same idea. Sous Vide' just takes it to an extreme. "doneness" is controlled by temperature. If you limit temp to the doneness temperature, you cannot mess up doneness - it is impossible. (But you can cook it down to jelly... a perfect, medium-rate (or, your choice) jelly...) You are cooking at the desired terminal temperature.

Some things are impossible. You can't cook an extremely thick piece of fish, for example. The outside would turn to mush before the inside is cooked. And the microbes would be having a field-day.

Comment: Re:Utter drivel (Score 1) 228

by jtara (#47364835) Attached to: Nathan Myhrvold's Recipe For a Better Oven

Sous vide is done in a precision-controlled water bath, you numpty. Not an oven.

Pretty sure he knows that, given the featured technique of his pricey multi-volume Modernist Cuisine (purportedly the most financially-successful cookbook ever - and at $500 it should be!) is Sous Vide'... Lots of pretty pictures of bags hanging in water tanks. (There's a more-affordable "at Home" version, which I own.)

Think they didn't show the pretty pictures to Nathan?

SRSLY, that set is probably one of the major drivers behind the popularization of Sous Vide'. (Along with Thomas Keller's book.) And it really is sweeping the world of cooking by storm. Restaurants don't necessarily like to publicize it. (Some are proud of it, others would rather you didn't know.) Popular restaurants that now use Sous Vide':

- Chipoltle (barbacoa, carnitas)
- Panera (steaks, turkey, salmon)

At the higher end, this list is nothing to sneeze at!

Myrhvold has set-out to change how we cook. Apparently, one appliance at a time.

Comment: Re:the real question is... (Score 3, Informative) 228

by jtara (#47364743) Attached to: Nathan Myhrvold's Recipe For a Better Oven

If I want a steak like a steakhouse, I want 800C

If I want steak better than a steakhouse, I cook it vacuum-sealed in a plastic bag in a water bath at 57-58C (135-138F) (= "medium rare") for 2 to 4 hours.

Then I sear it with a torch, on a grill, or in a pan. That's when the 800C comes in handy.

There is an art to a grilled steak, and I respect the art. But the above method is fool-proof, and will produce the exact amount of doneness you want (adjust temperature, down for more red, up for less red) and with amazing tenderness. All as set out in Myhrvold's Modernist Cuisine. (I've got the more affordable "at Home" version...)

BTW *you do not want* a truly rare steak (125F). It is inedible. Not a high enough temperature for tenderness and more importantly, not high enough to render fat. A "rare" steak has only the very center of the steak rare. This way will give you the same doneness throughout, except for the very surface. Now, if you *want* the incremental variation of doneness from surface to center do it the "artful" way. And pray.

Not only do you get the exact degree of doneness you want - every time - but you reduce the risk of carcinogens. There is a direct correlation with flame exposure time. The quick sear at the end gets it over quickly.

The searing step produces the desired surface char and Malliard reaction. Sear at the end. Pre-searing "to keep in the juices" has been long-ago debunked. Sous Vide' cooking keeps in the juices anyway. (Much more so than grilling, anyway.)

Comment: Overkill (Score 1) 176

by jtara (#47327031) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Is It Feasible To Revive an Old Linux PC Setup?

Most of the suggestions here are overkill, and trying to solve a non-problem.

I'd expect most modern Linux distributions to work just fine on your old 200-era hardware. In the Linux world, that is not ancient hardware.

Just try it. Don't bother rummaging through the closet, modern releases should work.

Comment: Self-defeating protests (Score 4, Insightful) 507

by jtara (#47213815) Attached to: Uber Demonstrations Snarl Traffic In London, Madrid, Berlin

While I agree Uber and similar services are skirting and even openly defying regulations, these protests are self-defeating. The public will see the cab drivers as greedy and annoying.

Uber needs to simply sit back and do nothing about it. The less said the better.

In the U.S. these protests won't happen, unless the owners pay the drivers to protest. American cab drivers can't afford to take a day off to protest. The cab drivers are probably making less than the Uber drivers..

Comment: Third-world Jitney service (Score 4, Insightful) 260

by jtara (#47183681) Attached to: Virginia DMV Cracks Down On Uber, Lyft

Uber and Lyft are essentially third-world Jitney services, with a high-tech veneer.

The difference is the driver has been vetted by the company to some degree and there is a social reputation system in place.

Drivers are typically under-insured and under-licensed vs. regulatory requirements.

In California, for example, drivers-for-hire have to be specifically licensed, and carry $1M liability insurance. Uber provides a $100K "umbrella" for the benefit of passengers, "just in case" the driver isn't insured as required by the company. (But the required insurance level is far less than that required by the state.) The car, as well, needs to be registered with the state (TCP). (Unless a taxi, which is regulated locally).

Certainly, taxi and limo companies have a stake in keeping the status quo. That does not change the facts about under-insurance and under-licensing. So, they do have a legitimate beef about unfairness and protection of the public. This also works in their self-interested to limit competition, though.

If we don't have enough taxis, or limitation of taxis is artificially boosting rates, change the local regulations to allow more taxis. Let's have a more fundamental public debate and solution. Sure, taxi and limo companies are greedy. So are Uber and Lyft. Let's work-out what is really best for the public.

Uber/Lyft is "solving the problem" by ignoring it, and avoided a public/political debate by slipping in through a (non-existent, IMO) loophole.

Comment: Axle Plant production line (Score 1) 310

On a Bendix axle plant production line. On an Altair. Hardness tester. Test hardness. Spray red or green paint.

Project got dropped in my lap, no software had been written. Ship date had arrived. Boss told a white lie and sent me and a technician to "install the equipment, and make some final adjustments".

The "final adjustments" were writing the software.

Oh. He told one more white lie. As far as the plant personnel were concerned, we were three days late. We didn't know we were three days late. They started yelling at us as soon as we arrived.

They found me a table and chair, and I set-up the Altair next to the inspection line. The line was down (no pressure!) but it's still damn noisy in there!

Plus: the two machine operators were there, twiddling their thumbs. I got to ask questions like "how would you like this button to work?" (WHAT design?)

Plus Two: The Middlesex Diner.

Comment: Re:Am I the only one who thinks Sterling got screw (Score 2) 76

by jtara (#47092799) Attached to: Steve Ballmer In Talks To Buy Los Angeles Clippers

Serious answer: it's kinda sad, because the guy obviously is suffering from dementia of some sort.

Yes, he and his wife both seem to be racist jerks that don't realize that. But in the past, he's had the mental facilities to stop himself before he said something stupid or inciting. I think it just spills out and he has no control over it. This is apparent from the conflicting statements he makes from one sentence to the next.

Dementia: turning racist jerks into really racist jerks.

Comment: Missing the point (many words! boiled-down...) (Score 4, Insightful) 180

by jtara (#46834125) Attached to: Anonymous' Airchat Aim: Communication Without Need For Phone Or Internet

Most posters here seem not to have read the details on the Github page, and are missing the point.

This is a way to have encrypted point-to-point communication or (in some cases) network using any radio (or other) transmission equipment that will transmit/receive audio signals and allow you to tap-into the analog audio circuit of the transmitter and receiver. You could use it with:

- telephones (landline kind)
- mobile phones
- radio transceivers (legal or illegal - the protocol doesn't *require* that you break the law!)
- optical communication equipment - free air/fibre
- etc. etc. etc.

It just defines a common protocol and means of modulation/demodulation.

They take a whole lot of words to say this, and throw in a lot of revolutionary rhetoric.

And yes, it's very similar to amateur packet radio, except encrypted. So, lots of existing code to draw from.

It's well within the capability of any PC or smartphone today. Although I let my ham license lapse many years ago, I do have a couple of receivers squirreled away somewhere, and a few years ago I experimented with listening-in on amateur packet radio. You just run the output from your receiver into the input of a Soundblaster card (I SAID this was a few years ago...) and the application handles the decoding.

An interesting side-note: If you're near an airport, you can use similar software to decode VHF ACARS transmissions. (The kind that hasn't helped much in locating MH370). Just install some open-source software, hook your scanner up to your PC, tune to the right frequency, and it turns the squawks into somewhat-readable messages.

It's biggest drawback is it's biggest strength, IMO. It DOESN'T define a common frequency, some complex frequency-hopping or spread-spectrum scheme, or even common transmission media. It would be extremely hard for it to gain critical mass. On the other hand, it means there are an awful lot of places one would have to look to find it. It's up to whatever group that wants to communicate to settle on a transmission media and (if applicable) frequency.

Genius is ten percent inspiration and fifty percent capital gains.