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Comment Re:Doubtful (Score 1) 811 811

This makes it popular and gives it a party trick (insane mode) but doesn't do much for driving enjoyment.

Party trick? You could say that. https://www.youtube.com/watch?...

Get back to me when anyone ever has that much fun with an M3. :-)

Yeah, like that never gets old. I've had fast cars and slow cars and it was always the car that communicated with you the most that was the most rewarding to drive. There is so much more to driving then acceleration...

Comment Re:Doubtful (Score 1) 811 811

A Tesla is nicer to drive than an M3.

Ha! Ha! Ha! You can't compare a Tesla to what is the benchmark to automotive excellence that is the M3...

The Tesla has exactly 2 things going for it: torque and the fact that it's an EV. This makes it popular and gives it a party trick (insane mode) but doesn't do much for driving enjoyment.

People who actually know and enjoy cars care about things like engine sound, steering feedback, torque delivery, shifter feel (yes, manual transmissions still exist) and a zillion little things that make some cars special and others not so much. I'm sure the Tesla is a fine ride but it sounds very boring to trot around in silence with nothing to do (no transmission) other than play with the iPad glued to the dashboard.

No wonder EV proponents naturally gravitate towards the self-driving car argument. EV cars are boring as hell....

And you have it completely the wrong way around on snow handling. EVs are out in the snow when ICE cars are stuck. It's the low end torque and the extra weight.

Actually, no. Snow and ice tend to be slippery so you don't actually want a lot of torque going to the wheels because that makes them slip. In general, you want weight over the driving wheels, good winter tires and the ability to control your cars gear, throttle and clutch precisely. For most of these things the EVs are not a good fit...

A Nissan Leaf is nicer to drive than a Nissan Versa.

And you have it completely the wrong way around on snow handling. EVs are out in the snow when ICE cars are stuck. It's the low end torque and the extra weight. Don't bother arguing the point, you'll find out if you google.

Biofuels are irrelevant (except for pork barrelling). Virtually all ICE cars run fossil fuels. But when I said in all ways, I clearly didn't just mean the global warming effect. I meant more generally that ICE cars are oily, sooty things.

Comment Re:quickly to be followed by self-driving cars (Score 1) 811 811

But you're also making the case for how absurd it is that people use additional energy (compounded over several million vehicles I bet it ads up) in the form of gasoline to always carry around stuff they only sometimes need.

The whole system is designed for people having stuff "they only sometimes need". Most commuters only need a single seat and a 20 mile range but they keep the 4 seat SUV with a gasoline engine so they can take the family to the lake once a month. It's not just cars. Most people have a "guest bedroom" and additional extra rooms in their house that are only used occasionally. It gets even worse than that, how often does someone actually use the ladder, extension cord, etc... that's hanging in their garage. I doubt that in an average city that more than 1% of ladders are being actively used at any one time. The "parent with extra crap" stuff is actually easy to solve. Just get a large duffle bag with all the stuff and throw it in the trunk when the car shows up but there is a ton of "extra capacity" everywhere in modern life. I would venture to guess that if we could efficiently distribute items only when needed that we could reduce our consumption of things like shopvacs, ladders, ext cords, by 90+% because a vast majority of the stuff in the average house is not used on a daily basis and some of it sits and rots for months between uses.

I'm looking at that iPhone 6+ in your hand right now... ;)

Comment Re:Pollinators (Score 1) 225 225

You joke, but if you watch the excellent documentary "More Than Honey" (on netflix) you can see that due to the bee population being severely impacted in China they actually DO have people running around pollinating plants!

So, basically, you are saying that bees are taking away high-paying pollination jobs? Down with the bees!

Comment Re:Not to say it's unnecessary (Score 1) 843 843

[quote]The F16 seems to be holding up fine and the Russians, the only non-allied force with similar capabilities is flying mostly rust that is older than the F16 program.[/quote]

Uh, no. They're actually way ahead of us. The F-35 was a response to the Su-27. They're two generations ahead of that now. The Sukhoi series is faster, better armed, better armored, more maneuverable, has a longer range, and basically kicks the crap out of anything we have. We'd better hope we don't get in a real war with the Russians or the couple of countries that can afford to buy their gear.

https://youtu.be/c2MW8DoJJXg

The Russians have done fantastic things with the Su-27 family. It is interesting to note that when the first prototypes of the Su-27 flew they badly underperformed. The Su-27 prototypes just could not match the relatively new F-15, which already held several world records. Rather than scrap it or built it as-is, the Russians went back to the drawing board and radically re-designed the plane. The result was nothing short than spectacular as the new Su-27 started capturing all sorts of records for time-to-height was capable of performed a variety of awe-inspiring maneuvers etc.

On a side note, one of the main weaknesses of the F-22 and US aircraft in general is their relatively short range. This is not a problem when you are operating in "small" countries and launching from carriers situated nearby but for any kind of operation over a large operational theatre (Russia, China, etc.) you depend on in-flight refuelling or the use of drop tanks. The former means that you have to protect those support assets and the latter nullifies your stealth capability. Stealth is sexy and handy when everything works out perfectly but it does impose its own limits and problems.

I would also be willing to bet that maintenance and repairs on Russian aircraft would be much simpler and cheaper, which matters in a real confrontation.

Anyone who dismisses the capability of the current crop of Russian aircraft, particularly when in the context of potential conflicts, is being disingenuous at best or has no idea what they are talking about.

Submission + - Dark Matter May Not Be Completely Dark

StartsWithABang writes: If you take two clusters, groups, or individual galaxies and collide them together, you'd expect the stars to pass through unperturbed, the gas to experience friction, slowing down and heating up, while the dark matter, if it's truly collisionless, will do the same thing as the stars. But if there's a tiny frictional force at work on dark matter, it, too, will slow down a little bit. A team looking at 72 groups and clusters saw no effect of slowing down, but then on the 73rd one, they saw a separation between the mass reconstruction and the stars. Is this the first sign of dark matter's interactions, or is it simply an astrophysical effect, or maybe even a fluke? A good recap and rundown of what we're looking at to the best of our knowledge.

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