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Comment: Re:Water- we dump it on the ground (Score 1) 590

by sootman (#49513301) Attached to: William Shatner Proposes $30 Billion Water Pipeline To California

> It is not a very plausible solution for agricultural use-- too
> expensive. Do you realize that those people take the water
> and just dump it on the ground?

HA! I *wish* they would just dump it on the ground. I've driven by farms in the valley where gigantic sprayers are just launching it all high into the air, and a good amount of it evaporates before it even has a chance to hit the ground.

Comment: Re:not in the usa (Score 1) 283

by kimvette (#49505639) Attached to: Norway Will Switch Off FM Radio In 2017

You're confusing HD Radio with satellite radio. Both are digital but HD Radio is free.

The problem with HD Radio is until now you haven't been able to get them in a vehicle, with no to very few models even offering it as an option, and only a couple of aftermarket head units with HD Radio receivers being available. That is only just now beginning to change, with some makes having made HD Radio standard, and others offering it as a premium option. Oh, and AV receivers - very few home AV receivers offer HD Radio as a band, so you need to buy a separate tuner component to receive it.

HD Radio has been a flop for the same reason as AM Stereo (which was actually quite good!); lack of receivers.

Comment: Re:I think one of my locals already has (Score 1) 283

by kimvette (#49505009) Attached to: Norway Will Switch Off FM Radio In 2017

> I grab some tapes

Cassette tapes? People still listen to those? Can you even buy cassette tapes any more?

I still have a Pioneer cassette deck at home but haven't even hooked it up in years. I still have about 30 blank Type II and Type IV tapes still in shrink wrap. I don't think I'll ever use them.

Comment: Re:About half (Score 2) 283

by kimvette (#49501921) Attached to: Norway Will Switch Off FM Radio In 2017

Another thing I'd forgotten about; an increasingly common trend with top-end vehicles (not cheap pieces of shit as you claim) is integrating even MORE features from the CAN bus into the head unit, particularly climate control. This is becoming increasingly (and annoyingly) commonplace, and is starting to filter down into midrange vehicles as well.

It's only the cheap pieces of shit and high-end vehicles from a handful of makes which only hand-build cars (Koeningsegg, Spyker, etc.) where volume is too low to justify highly integrated units where you can swap a head unit and not have to jump through hoops to not lose any functionality.

Sure, in most vehicles you can either install a CAN hub or even a passive connector and get the car to run, but you will lose some of the original features and kill trade-in/resale value in the process - and for the vehicles which have jumped on the touch-screen-for-everything trend, good luck selling a car where heat/defrost/AC doesn't work.

Comment: Re:About half (Score 2) 283

by kimvette (#49501787) Attached to: Norway Will Switch Off FM Radio In 2017

Chrysler (including Jeep) - okay, cheap pieces of shit there, I'll grant you that
Newer Toyota models (including Lexus), especially the higher end models

You can get a CAN interface to bypass the radio but at risk of losing audio for turn indicators, headlamp warning, key left in ignition warning, and so forth. You may or may not also lose your steering wheel controls for the radio; some aftermarket head units and CAN interfaces can translate various makes' control codes, but some cannot, and most head units lack this integration entirely. Getting vehicles' warning tones with an aftermarket head unit is very iffy at best, so many installers take the factory head unit and relocate it so the functionality is retained, sometimes by rerouting or eliminating ductwork and shoving the radio deeper into the dash, but increasingly often by either eliminating the glove box or extending the factory wire harness and relocating the head unit to a different location, or simply installing aftermarket head units above or below the factory head unit and custom fabricating a new center console.

Comment: Re:I thought MSFT bought Nokia for $7 Billion (Score 1) 66

by sootman (#49480941) Attached to: Nokia To Buy Alcatel-Lucent for $16.6 Billion

LaserDisc's biggest problem was that it was read-only. Compared to "I can watch AND record ANYTHING", the market for "I can only watch studio films" was tiny. AFAIK, the very first LaserDiscs were one hour PER SIDE, so even the first model could hold a 2-hour movie on a single disc. That was the point of its existence.

Comment: Re:Raises a point about tech reviews (Score 1) 72

by kimvette (#49478345) Attached to: New Samsung SSD 840 EVO Read Performance Fix Coming Later This Month

> But when it comes to expensive bits of hardware like SSDs and high-end graphics cards, I'd be interested in reviews which came out a bit later but gave a better reflection of failure rates and longer-term issues. I've been stung before by buying a well-reviewed graphics card which turned out to have a horrible failure rate over time.

You may very well be waiting for the product to go EOL and be superseded by a new model. In technology that is the ongoing story....

To spot the expert, pick the one who predicts the job will take the longest and cost the most.