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Comment: Re:Age restriction only. (Score 1) 301

My wife finally got driverless cars a few days ago (or why I’m always going on about them). We were talking about our baby daughter being a teenager. When she realized that driverless cars would let our daughter get home from parties (without us picking her up) and that there would be less temptation for her to get in a car with drunk & stupid teenage drivers, my wife was “Bring it on!”

Moving gradually to driverless cars by giving the human less and less to do is a bad idea. It’ll just be more temptation to check their iPhone, whereas if the car is doing the driving they can do what they like.

Comment: Re:How about (Score 1) 285

by ockegheim (#46580513) Attached to: I prefer my peppers ...
AFAIK, capsaicin doesn’t actually have a flavour, or at least a significant one. It chemically induces pain receptors to feel pain, so if you’re tolerant, you can enjoy the flavours of the dish. As parent says, searing pain may distract you from flavours.

Peppers can vary greatly in heat. I read recently some farmers talking about their peppers. They said that one pepper in ten would cause serious pain, and the others were significantly milder.

Comment: Re:How about (Score 1) 285

by ockegheim (#46580427) Attached to: I prefer my peppers ...
That said, when I was in my twenties I would sometimes go to an Indian restaurant that did up to vindaloo, then vindaloo +1, meaning extra chilli. One of the most fun nights I ever had was watching two friends make their way through a +1. The most I managed was +2. If you ate a +5 you got on to the honour-board, and the theoretical maximum was +13. Fun times.

Apparently the local university rugby club would take their new recruits there for a machismo initiation. That would have been fun to watch.

Comment: Re:And I thought I was inefficient (Score 1) 327

by ockegheim (#45471575) Attached to: Monthly net electricity use in my household:
In November 2012 we used 140kWh (we were away for part of October 2012 which rules it out for comparison). In October 2013 we used 311kWh. Getting a new sauna will do that! Thanks to the smart-meter, it looks like a sauna takes about 8kWh over about two hours. It’s an 8kW heater, but only uses full power during the initial phase.

My electricity retailer has just been bought by a company I can never use because they appointed a debt collector for money I didn’t owe them. So it’s time to search for another one. Last time I analyzed pricing they were all much the same when all their pricing idiosyncrasies are accounted for. If my new company hadn’t made me the angriest I’ve ever been in my life I would say that I would be prioritizing doing my tax over choosing yet another electricity retailer.

Comment: The trailer did it no justice (Score 1) 726

My friend dragged me along to see it. I’d seen the trailer, which was just troopers & bugs, and gave no idea of what the movie was actually like. I really enjoyed the satire, and Denise Richards’ cute smile as the “piloted the spaceship”. And it had Neil Patrick Harris, who is awesome!

All the people in the movie were thinking exactly what they’d been told to think. Maybe Verhoeven was playing a joke on all the people who thought what it looked like the movie was telling them to think.

Comment: Re:Klipsch Rugged earphones FTW (Score 1) 262

by ockegheim (#45306511) Attached to: Do You Need Headphones While Working?

I don't want any frequencies boosted or attenuated, I want a flat frequency response. I don't want it to "sound good" I want it to faithfully reproduce the original performance. I want it to sound like the musicians are in the room with me, and you won't get that with MP3s.

If you were really keen, you could listen to some music on a high-quality speaker system, then try to approximate that in your headphones with appropriate EQ. But the next best thing is flat- let professional sound engineers do their job!

Comment: Re:It won't be until... (Score 1) 472

by ockegheim (#45056259) Attached to: How long before most automobile driving is done by computers?
Hehe, the car I bought this year was a bit cheaper because no other buyers wanted manual transmission. Talking to people who actually know about cars, it seems (good) automatic transmission is just as good as manual these days. I’d rather be reading than watching the road or changing gears.

Comment: Re:How do you use braille sheet music? (Score 1) 49

To not really answer your question, blind singers (who do have both their hands free) follow the music with one hand and the lyrics with the other.

In 2007 I had a lot of choral music at my wedding, including an original piece. One of our friends is blind, so a few weeks before, I sent off all the music to the local Institute for the Blind where someone put all the music into braille. Automatic tools for putting music into braille would save choirmasters a lot of planning and free up the volunteer transcribers to do other things.

We gave you an atomic bomb, what do you want, mermaids? -- I. I. Rabi to the Atomic Energy Commission

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