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Comment: Some appliances run fine on DC (Score 1) 597 597

Many appliances run just fine on 120v DC power. Of course it's hard to tell which ones without either taking it apart and examining it or trying it and risking the magic smoke coming out.

Nothing high-current will ever switch to low voltage DC, I hope. I'm already annoyed at my 120v electric lawn mower; stupid extension cord is way heavier than my in-laws 240v electric lawn mower in Europe. Considering the cost of copper we should be switching to higher voltages, not lower.

Seems like the batteries could be redesigned to be higher voltage to reduce inverter losses. Just add more cells.

True sine wave IGBT converters are pretty efficient.

Comment: I lived in a FEMA trailer and it wasn't that bad (Score 3, Informative) 79 79

I had the priviledge of living in a government surplus FEMA trailer on a Navy base for about four weeks. It really wasn't that bad. They're just cheap trailers built by some cheap trailer company like the millions of other cheap trailers that people live in all over the US. There's nothing FEMA-ey about them. I don't know what everybody is complaining about. Bunch of whine-ass cry-babies. "Oh the FREE trailer I got from the government ISN'T GOOD ENOUGH". Or maybe this whole thing was concocted by the media. When FEMA got rid of them, this base got about a dozen, for free, and they've been lived in ever since, including by me, and they are perfectly livable.

Comment: Slashdot interviews getting better? (Score 1) 20 20

There are those in oceanography who would tell you that Bob's submersibles are pressurized by his own overinflated ego. But I guess haters gonna hate. FWIW my grandpa met him once and speaks highly of him, and he answered a letter one of my cousin's wrote to him. And the JASON system is fucking rad.

Comment: Re:So? (Score 1) 175 175

Your victrola is probably an exceptional outlyer. It's remarkable because it's so old and still works. Nevermind the million other busted victrolas in the landfill. I've gone through plenty of old stuff that was busted and not worth fixing for any practical reason. Old does not necessarily equal good. Sure manufacturing quality of consumer goods is hit or miss but that's nothing new either. You think nobody sold junk 100 years ago? Yeah right.

Comment: All that's old is new again (Score 1) 175 175

It wasn't very long ago that; guess what? NOBODY owned their telephone! That's right, you RENTED it from the phone company! In fact it was ILLEGAL to third party phone. In fact some people STILL RENT their phone. Their ROTARY land line phone.

http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/offbeat/2006-09-14-phone_x.htm

Funny how quickly people forget. As they say in china, there's nothing new under the sun.

Comment: The tipping point (Score 2) 147 147

My understanding is that it's easy to spread READ ONLY postgres load accross multiple servers. WRITING is a bottleneck with postgresql though because it enforces consistency, while other DBs like couch kick the consistency can down the road to the application. But I haven't seriously looked into it in years.

Never say you know a man until you have divided an inheritance with him.

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