Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?

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: Re:Gin & Tonic (Score 1) 71

by mspohr (#49107025) Attached to: Drug-Resistant Malaria May Pose Major Threat

You jest... but the invention of "quinine water" (tonic) mixed with gin was to mask the bitter flavor of quinine so that people could take their daily dose and prevent malaria in tropical areas.
Unfortunately, like for all other drugs, malaria has developed resistance to quinine so it is less effective today (but still a good mixer for gin).

Comment: Re:Typical commie solution, just steal from others (Score 1) 145

by mspohr (#49083381) Attached to: The Burden of Intellectual Property Rights On Clean Energy Technologies

So... let me see if I have this right... the problem is that the oil companies bribe the government for access to oil and then the people they didn't bribe (i.e. most everyone except a few in power) "steal" their own oil. Sounds good to me.

Comment: Re:Sweet, sweet karma (Score 3, Interesting) 257

by mspohr (#49061189) Attached to: Tesla Factory Racing To Retool For New Models

If you think burning fossil fuels in an ICE at 25% efficiency is green, then keep on sending your money to the terrorists.... EVs emit less CO2 than ICE cars even if the electricity comes from dirty coal because there is much higher efficiency at all stages. Coal is on it's way out for electricity generation, BTW, in case you haven't heard. Worldwide coal consumption has decreased for the past few years and the "war on coal" is just getting started. Wind and solar electricity are now cost competitive with coal and much cheaper than nuclear.
EV cars are much cheaper than gas... even the cheap gas we have today. Gas would have to go below $0.50 a gallon to be cheaper than electricity for cars.

Comment: Re:It would be great if google and apple enter ... (Score 1) 138

by mspohr (#49055391) Attached to: Apple Hiring Automotive Experts

I agree. Automotive electronic are generally stupid and far behind times. Most every new car today has electronic features which are laughable compared to consumer electronics. Worse, they can't be upgraded and won't be upgraded so you'll be stuck with it until you sell the car. Microsoft tried to make car software which Ford used but the software was typical of the garbage that MS produces.
It would be great if Apple made car software. We might get some good car software for a change.
(Tesla seems to be the one manufacturer which actually "gets it" with car software. Their entire car is run by software and it's updated every few months to add features, etc. But then, they've hired a lot of Apple people.)

Comment: Re:Sharing Economy? (Score 1) 215

by mspohr (#49055251) Attached to: Japan Now Has More Car Charging Points Than Gas Stations

Most EVs have batteries with a total storage capacity of about 20 to 40 kWh and a recharge rate of about 5 kW. Electricity costs 10 to 20 cents per kWh so a one hour charge costs $0.50 to $1.00. This is enough to get most people back on the road to their destination and it won't break the bank.
Teslas are different with a battery capacity of 85 kWh and a charge rate at a Supercharger of about 100 kW. Superchargers are "free" (you do have to buy the car) so you could theoretically drive anywhere without paying anything for "fuel".

Comment: Re:Points vs. stations (Score 1) 215

by mspohr (#49055137) Attached to: Japan Now Has More Car Charging Points Than Gas Stations

You are right. It's difficult to compare gas stations and EV charge points since they are used differently.
In your ICE (Internal combustion engine) car, when you run low on gas you drive to the gas station and fill up. You might do this once or twice a week and you need to count the time it takes to get to the gas station and back to your route as well as the short time to fill up.
In an EV, you usually just plug the car in at home at night and it's "full" in the morning. Takes about 10 seconds to plug in. Alternatively, you may have a charge point at work and plug in during the day. It's rare for an EV driver to need to fill up while driving around during the day. The total time that most people spend recharging is just the few seconds it takes to plug in the car.
The one exception is long distance travel. Most EVs have a range of less than 100 miles which meet the needs of most "daily drivers" but they are not designed for cross country travel. The Tesla with a range of 200-300 miles can work for long distance cross country travel because of the Supercharger network. These are spaced every 100-200 miles along major travel routes and take about 20-30 minutes to recharge so you can easily travel cross country. But again, cross country travel is unusual, most people just drive around near home or commute to work and plug in at night so they never have to worry about stopping to charge during the day.

Thus spake the master programmer: "Time for you to leave." -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"