Please create an account to participate in the Slashdot moderation system

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

Slashdot videos: Now with more Slashdot!

  • View

  • Discuss

  • Share

We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).

×

Comment: And why not? (Score 4, Interesting) 15

Considering that nuclear power is the safest form of power the world has ever known, I'd say it's worthy of recognition for offsetting carbon more than anything else. To borrow a phrase, "It's the energy density, stupid."

There's a reason why China has 30 nuclear plants under construction, while the US just approved its first new plant in 30 years.

Comment: A social scientist translating for them (Score 1) 145

by aussersterne (#49366895) Attached to: Experts: Aim of 2 Degrees Climate Goal Insufficient

What they're trying to say, using the usual feminist sociology over-loquatiousness is:

For some on the planet, keeping it under 2 degrees will preserve a relatively familiar or at least acceptable quality of life.

For others on the planet, quality of life can only be preserved by keeping it under, say 1.5 degrees, or even one degree.

The first group (that can live with a higher threshold) are those in the upper portions of the global economic scale, and it's an acceptable rise for them because they can also afford technologies and tools (getting crude, say, air conditioners, new home materials, new kinds of agricultural output, etc.) that make a 2 degree rise tolerable.

The second group (that can't live at the 2 degree threshold, and really need a lower one) are going to tend to be in the lower portions of the global economic scale, who won't have access to the technologies and tools that make a 2 degree rise livable for those at the top of the scale.

Policymakers and scientists tend, by virtue of their privileged position, to be in the first group, and have thus set the 2 degree rise in connection with thinking of their own, best-case lifestyles, rather than—say—a member of one of the globe's largely impoverished equatorial populations without access to much in the way of resources, tools, or technologies already.

It's a good point: the effects are not uniform, and if 2 degrees is the upper bound for the people who are the globe's *most* comfortable, then it's probably a bad upper bound in general, because it will "cook" (even more than already occurs) those that are the *least* comfortable.

It was, however, bad language and clarity—which is a sin that social science commits far too often.

Their point is well taken:

Comment: Re:Yes. It is called "land subsidence" (Score 1) 145

by hey! (#49366771) Attached to: Experts: Aim of 2 Degrees Climate Goal Insufficient

Which makes sense. Sea level rise in the last 50 years has amounted to about 4 inches, probably not enough to make drains run backwards.

The way sea level rise will make itself known isn't through changes in day to day phenomena, but in exceptional phenomena like storm surge flooding. This is a place where inches may well matter. People plan around concepts like a "ten year flood" or a "hundred year flood", and this creates a sharp line on the map where there is no sharp line in reality. Depending where on the domain of the bell curve their chosen planning horizon is, a few inches could turn a ten year flood into a five year flood, which has immense practical implications.

When people way that there is nothing intrinsically worse about a globe that's four degrees hotter they're right. But *change* that undermines human plans represents a big challenge. Change also represents a big challenge to species populations that can't relocate on the timescale of change.

Comment: Why do they need to come back to Earth? (Score 1) 82

by Catbeller (#49366331) Attached to: SpaceX's New Combustion Technologies

Go to Mars. *Stay there*. Don't return the Presbyterian astronauts back home to Ohio. Keep lobbing supplies at the colonists until they can sustain themselves. Why on earth do we keep trying to re-enact the Apollo fiasco? Colonize, or don't go. Plenty of older folk such as myself who would be glad of a few years of low G before we die while we build up the place for later arrivals. Dying there? The horror! Um, of course you'd die if you stay on Earth anyway. Dying on Mars would be more scenic, and your knees wouldn't hurt when you stand up.

Of course, Mars won't pay for itself as far as Earth is concerned, the way orbiting terraria and factories would. Less room, less opportunity, and yet another gravity trap on any planet. Mars is a place to colonize. It can't produce wealth for the old country. And colonies don't care about the old world much, so we're building a suburb that will home-rule faster than a town next door to a impoverished city.

Well, limited vision, but at least we'd have two baskets to put our eggs in.

Comment: I'd rather have the audio streamed (Score 2) 293

by brunes69 (#49365747) Attached to: Why the Final Moments Inside a Cockpit Are Heard But Not Seen

In an era where I can purchase trans-atlantic wifi for $15, it seems archaic to me that we still rely on hardened "black boxes" for data retrieval. Why is audio from the flight deck not REQUIRED to be streamed real-time to satellites in orbit for commercial airliners? Yes yes, it won't be 100% reliable blah blah. So what? No one is advocating REMOVING the black box.. there is no reason you can't have both.

Comment: Re:led costs $22????? (Score 1) 146

by WindBourne (#49365037) Attached to: Graphene Light Bulbs Coming To Stores Soon
exactly right. I have not changed a burned out bulb in over a year. As I wrote elsewhere, we have less than 12 bulbs that are NOT LEDs and these are not changed due to economics (not on long enough / week to justify it). I will replace them down the road when they burn out.

But for a business, the costs of replacing bulbs can be ENORMOUS. In fact, higher than the costs of the bulbs. But by going to DECENT LEDs, you will get at least a decade. Even the cheap ones (pretty much everything that does not have a Cree or Philip LED) will normally last 2-3 years.

I will say that I bought 1 from Lights of America and another from GE about 5 years ago. Both burned out in less than 1 year. I was NOT impressed. In addition, both burned me on the warrenties. Not impressed.

Comment: Re:led costs $22????? (Score 1) 146

by WindBourne (#49364993) Attached to: Graphene Light Bulbs Coming To Stores Soon
No, these are NOT subsidized. In fact, while the GOP (along with the dems) subsidize LOADS of things, they would not subsidize LED bulbs, esp. ones produced in America. The GOP and the tea baggers would rather send manufacturing out of the nation, unless it is 100% on their terms (no taxes, no regulations, no corporate responsibilities).

Comment: Re:led costs $22????? (Score 1) 146

by WindBourne (#49364973) Attached to: Graphene Light Bulbs Coming To Stores Soon
First off, we switched our 3300 sq ft house to these over a year ago (I have less than 12 bulbs in the house that are not LEDs, but can not justify these economically since they do not burn a great deal). Have not lost a 1. They are holding up GREAT. In addition, we have seen our electric costs PLUMMET (which xcell hates since we have solar city ).

In addition, I know for a fact that these rarely come back to Home Depot. I have asked at several THD and what I found out was that the ones that fail are in much older homes (from 50s and before), or very cheap ones from before the 90s.

Comment: led costs $22????? (Score 2) 146

by WindBourne (#49363587) Attached to: Graphene Light Bulbs Coming To Stores Soon
The best 3 bulbs out there are Cree and then Philips. Cree has the BEST LED by far, along with the best electronics including the driver. That is why they warranty their bulbs for 10 years. OTOH, Philips does 2,3 and a few for 5. Then you have the cheap chinese junk for 1-3 years, which will not last 12 months and the warranties are worthless.

However, the Crees 65 w A19 bulb goes for $6.97 at Home Depot. These will last decades, unless you burn then 24x7.

And this new graphene LED bulbs will compete HOW?
Medicine

Citizen Scientists Develop Eye Drops That Provide Night Vision 77

Posted by Soulskill
from the cool-toys-with-no-off-switch dept.
rtoz writes: A group of scientists in California have successfully created eye drops that temporarily enable night vision. They use mixture of insulin and a chemical known as Chlorin e6 (Ce6) to enable the user to view objects clearly in darkness up to 50 meters away. Ce6 is found in some deep-sea fish and often used to treat night blindness. The solution starts to work within an hour of being applied to the user's eyes, and lasts for several hours afterward. The test subject's eyesight returned to normal the next day. The organization Science for the Masses has released a paper detailing the experiment on their website.

Comment: Re:as usual faith in humanity is gone... (Score 2) 169

by hey! (#49362099) Attached to: Commercial Flamethrower Successfully Crowdfunded

Having fun isn't necessarily stupid. Having fun with flamboyantly dangerous things isn't necessarily stupid. It's endangering unwilling bystanders that's stupid.

Some people like to build and shoot powerful crossbows, or even replicas of medieval siege weapons. These are extremely dangerous and useless things. The dangerous power of a trebuchet to throw an upright piano 150 yards is part of the charm.

But a trebuchet is something that takes certain amount of thought and sacrifice to obtain and use. This flamethrower thing is more like a powerful handgun. There's been a recent fad for ridiculously overpowered handguns, which pack superfluously fatal power into a convenient, affordable form factor. The recent brouhaha over "armor piercing" ammunition was a side effect of a manufacturer selling a cut-down semi-automatic carbine as a "handgun", even though if you look at videos of people using them they're obviously terrible as handguns. This raised the question of whether 5.56 NATO ammunition should be regulated as "handgun ammunition", and in the end I think the decision not to was reasonablee. These aren't cop-killing or military handguns. They're extremely dangerous toys designed to get your rocks off.

There are some who'd say that because these guns are dangerous and impractical they should be banned. But I don't agree. "Impractical" isn't the same as "useless" because getting your rocks off is a legitimate use for a thing. I think people should be able to enjoy their ridiculous firearms as long as they do it at some kind of appropriate range. I also think there's a real danger though from stupid people who will go plinking in the woods with the things like they were BB guns.

That's really the only problem I have with this flamethrower, whether it's gold, chrome, or gunmetal gray. Any idiot can buy one, but it'd take someone reasonably intelligent and determined to find a place where it can be used safely. I'm not against people buying them, but I am for coming down hard on people who use them where they're a danger or public nuisance.

"Mach was the greatest intellectual fraud in the last ten years." "What about X?" "I said `intellectual'." ;login, 9/1990

Working...