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Comment: German was widely used natively in the US (Score 1) 323

by smellsofbikes (#48143503) Attached to: How English Beat German As the Language of Science

Until as late as the 1850's, there were as many German speakers in Pennsylvania as English speakers, and until just before WWI it was common to hear people speaking German in the streets of any of the large cities. (There are still about a quarter million people in Pennsylvania who speak a version of German as their primary or daily-use secondary language, apparently.)
Likewise, in Colorado, there were so many German speakers that when Colorado became a state in 1876, the laws of the state were distributed, by law, in English, Spanish, and German, until 1914.
Those are the two states I know best: I presume many other states had similar situations.

Comment: Re:Too bad... (Score 1) 610

by scubamage (#48137425) Attached to: Wind Power Is Cheaper Than Coal, Leaked Report Shows
Not trying to throw my hat in behind the report, but it does say it's an interim report. So they may still be refining numbers. It's very possible that some director said "have a copy on my desk by tomorrow even if the numbers aren't completely ready, just give your best guess." That happens quite frequently in my job at least.

Comment: Re:not buying the report (Score 2) 610

by scubamage (#48137357) Attached to: Wind Power Is Cheaper Than Coal, Leaked Report Shows
Part time isn't really the issue that it is made out to be. The major problem it causes is that our current grid infrastructures aren't built to handle bursty loads. So, it means there is a ton of room here for innovation in energy storage (both batteries and capacitor banks). The disruption to wind patterns so far seems to be a non-issue. It may actually slightly lengthen growing seasons for farmers nearby because it appears to hinder the formation of frost. In fact, the only actual legitimate concern about wind that I've seen was that the disruption to wind flows from a substantial wind farm makes it difficult to place farms too near one another.

The subsidies, tax breaks, etc that you're talking about? That's in the US. This is for the entire EU. But if you want to put it in US terms, maybe you should also recognize tax subisides given for oil exploration, oil logistics (keystone pipeline XL anyone?), public health concerns from smog and carbon monoxide, military protection of oil and liquified natural gas trade routes, military campaign to protect oil pipelines (Georgia most recently), cleanup efforts when some idiot decides it's a good idea to drill somewhere that no submersibles can reach, etc. In fact, the actual price of a gallon of oil in the US is somewhere in the range of $16 when all ancillary costs are factored in.

Comment: Re:Questiona re a bit sexists (Score 1) 447

by smellsofbikes (#48131733) Attached to: Statisticians Uncover What Makes For a Stable Marriage

Also wealthier people simply have more resources to deal with financial trouble. They're not as likely to be split by external financial pressures, able to afford marriage counseling, possibly less likely to have been financially pressured into selecting a poor match and less likely to be looking to upgrade to a wealthier partner.

Plus one of the major things lower-income families argue about is money and how it's going to be allocated. More money, less arguments.
In our neighborhood, we can roughly estimate both income and how long a family's going to stay together by how often we hear screaming arguments coming from their houses.

Comment: Re:Victim blaming? (Score 4, Insightful) 622

by scubamage (#48131613) Attached to: The Correct Response To Photo Hack Victim-Blamers
Pretty much this exactly. People need to understand that online storage is essentially like having a stranger drive up to you in their windowless van, and offering to store stuff for you that you can get back anytime you want. You don't really know him. He promises "industry grade security!" on his van, and sleek curved corners on the van and maybe a recognizable fruit logo. You are taken in, and start storing your photos, your essays, your financial information, etc on his van. Except, what is industry grade security? What industry? How do you know he isn't looking at your stuff? How do you know he isn't parsing your stuff and selling that information? If you started reading warnings about this guy and his storage van on the news and online, would you still use his service? Because guess what - almost every single cloud storage company has had those warnings posted about them. It's not your fault if you fail to vet a service out, and give this guy $50 and he drives away and starts selling your stuff, you're right. But you're a dumbass for trusting someone you don't know blindly with things you don't want out in the public.

Put no trust in cryptic comments.

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