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Comment Re:Intuit is the Microsoft of tax software (Score 1) 423

Want to see something even more beautiful? If you want to do your own state taxes in PA (as opposed to buying the state package from HRBlock, Intuit, etc.), you go to www.pafreefile.com. There, you get sent to https://www.statefillableforms..., which is a domain run by... dum-dum-dummmmmm... Intuit.

Can't even print them out and fill them out on paper, you have to create an account and fill them out online on Intuit's site, then print them and mail them.

Fsck me. They ran their in-house system one last time for this year while "encouraging" us to use the new system. The new Intuit system is allegedly the only route next year.

Comment Re:Brake Pedal (Score 1) 262

> The brake pedal is for braking, dammit; simply lifting off the gas pedal should result in nearly coasting

You kids and your silly torque converters. In a proper car with three pedals, when you lift, as the motor slows it transmits braking torque to the drive wheels to which it is directly connected. It actually gives you more options for controlling the car. You can get it to rotate in a corner with a brief throttle-lift, upsetting the chassis less than if you touched the brakes.

What, you just sit in your car and aim it lazily at your destination? Where's the fun in that?

Comment _Rate_ of warming (Score 1) 1105

Again I'll ask you guys for confirmation (no one has said "no, you're wrong" the previous times I've asked): what I've understood all along about AGW is that man-made greenhouse gas contributions are increasing the _rate_ of warming.

To be clear, that seems to be pretty well agreed on. But "the increasing rate of global warming is man-made" is not the same thing as "global warming is man-made". We could be reducing the rate of warming, and we'd still frequently be having record high global average temperatures, because the trend in this interglacial period that predates our industrialized influence has been _warming_.

Can we still ask for accurate science reporting without being tarred and feathered as "denialists"? Or is that not allowed?

Comment Wi-Fi? Seriously? (Score 1) 139

Unable to RTFA (server not responding), but seriously? They _can't_ be talking about actually using 2.4GHz ISM band, _unlicensed_ spectrum, full of all kinds of crap that you have to accept, to build even a supplimental safety system. That's just the submitter putting a generic name to "wireless communication", right? *boggle*

Comment Isn't AGW supposed to be about _rate_ of change? (Score 1) 672

So somebody correct me if I'm wrong, but what I _think_ I've heard from the AGW proponents once you get past the ad-hominems (on both sides!), is that yes, we are between ice ages, and yes, the planet does naturally warm as you come out of an ice age (duh!), and yes, the planet has been warmer in the distant past, but AGW is about the global average temp increasing _faster_ than it should be naturally. Is that close?

So am I wrong in seeing "this was the warmest decade recorded"-type headlines lately and thinking "yeah, so?"? What happened to the rate-of-change bit? How is that trending compared to what they think is supposed to be natural?

IANACS...

Comment Re:game changing, if true (Score 1) 284

Don't misunderstand me -- I hate that as much as anyone. I'm talking about ICEs in an appropriate setting (mostly closed-course competition); and even on the street, a nice V-8 doesn't have to be _loud_ to sound sweet. I've got cats and reasonable mufflers on mine; it's far from obnoxiously loud, but still has a nice song to it.

And honestly, here in my neck of the woods, subwoofers are a much bigger nuisance than loud exhausts. Self-centered idiots will be self-centered idiots, regardless what tools are available.

Comment Re:game changing, if true (Score 3, Interesting) 284

The electric motor beats the combustion engine in every way

Not quite _every_ way. What it's missing is "soul" (all you folks driving stock Hondas won't notice any change, har har): the howl of a GT-1-spec V8 that makes the hair on the back of your neck stand up, the growl of a boxer-6, the scream of a racebike at 16k RPMs, even the burble of a tuned street-V8 idling. I guess you can play pretty motor sounds from a speaker, but still, it's not the same. :)

And there really is a lot of cool engineering in modern ICEs. Some of us will miss that.

Don't get me wrong, I think something like an AWD rally car with independent electric wheel motors is going to be _fantastic_, performance-wise. But it won't have quite the same emotional pull as the old stuff.

Comment Re:Impossible to test (Score 1) 499

I don't think it's applicable in the Prius case, but worth noting in general:

At WOT, the vacuum-assist for many power-assist brake systems just isn't there. You'll get one, maybe two applications from the vacuum reserve system. At that point, you have to be a little bit strong (and your seat has to be positioned properly) to generate that kind of braking force.

I'm not excusing it (your seat _should_ be positioned correctly, and you _should_ be strong enough to work the brakes without the assist), just pointing out that it's not quite that trivial.

I was playing poker the other night... with Tarot cards. I got a full house and 4 people died. -- Steven Wright

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