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Comment: Can you say... (Score 1) 379

by madeye the younger (#33804162) Attached to: Canadian Spammer Fined Over $1 Billion

Punitive damages? Good! I knew that you could. This isn't restitution, where the amount matches some arbitrary measure of costs incurred (harm done). This is to make the punishment so deliberately disproportional to the actual cost/benefit that others avoid the same offense because its such a bad business risk.

Comment: non-magnetic toner (Score 2, Interesting) 651

by madeye the younger (#32333360) Attached to: HP Explains Why Printer Ink Is So Expensive

Most consumer grade dry toner is made of magnetite dust (filings gives the impression that the magnetite is much coarser than it actually is), and a carrier which is wax and/or resin. The reason most consumer grade toner has iron in it, is because that allows the stuff to be applied to the to the image drum by brushing 'waves' of it with a magnetic roller assembly.

Non-magnetic dry toner exists, but its more complicated and fussy to get it on the image cylinder. For example, the Midax print engines (Delphax technology based) I used to maintain could use either, but required a different toner delivery assembly. The 'nonmag' toner hopper delivered toner to the image cylinder by blowing air through a sintered metal plate to make the layer of toner above it behave as a fluid. If things weren't Just So (down to things we didn't control very well such as ambient air temperature and humidity, fumes from flexographic ink, etc) it would work poorly if at all. When it did work, we could run the paper web through the press at up to 400 feet per minute or so.

Comment: Re:Inaccurate comparison (Score 1) 346

by madeye the younger (#30994884) Attached to: China Is Winning Global Race To Make Clean Energy

This may be a bit misleading for some. Vestas (Vestas and Siemens are the two largest wind power companies in Denmark) sells a lot of towers overseas - however it subcontracts the actual construction. It doesn't physically export thousands of tons of structural steel to the U.S.; it contracts with a company like mine to build them here. I personally have fabricated sections of Vestas towers, to their specs (as confirmed by their unforgiving inspectors).

So, when there's talk of Vestas 'exporting towers', yeah they sold them, its their design, but they don't necessarily PHYSICALLY export the towers.

Comment: Re:Inaccurate comparison (Score 1) 346

by madeye the younger (#30994756) Attached to: China Is Winning Global Race To Make Clean Energy

Really? The towers that I personally fabricated 8 ton parts for don't count? Or is Wisconsin not considered part of the United States any more? We make the towers, we make the turbines, we erect them, we maintain them, and we service them. That's just the company I work for, and I assure you its not Chinese owned or operated.

Comment: easily made anywhere? really? (Score 3, Informative) 346

by madeye the younger (#30979986) Attached to: China Is Winning Global Race To Make Clean Energy

My dayjob is running a steel plate roller at a wind turbine tower construction company. I speak from first hand experience when I say they are NOT 'easily made anywhere'. Even if that were so, the tower sections are most definately not easily transported anywhere. It is a helluva lot easier to transport the flat steel plate than the completed sections, as there are so many restrictions on oversized loads on roadways.

The contracts to supply towers go to the construction facilities near the project sites, precisely because the cost of transporting completed sections is so much higher than transporting the materials. The only competition from Chinese towers will be for sites located within spitting distance of a deep water port.

Comment: bugs / wires (Score 2, Interesting) 134

by madeye the younger (#29605111) Attached to: Communicator Clothing

So, we can finally abandon the ancient, hoary plot device of the movie bad guys ripping open somebody's shirt to reveal a 1970's Radio Shack bug microphone/transmitter taped to their chest? Since a bug can now be anywhere *inside* the shirt material itself (or pants for that matter), important Mafia business will now be conducted in the nude?

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