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Comment Re: Wow (Score 3, Insightful) 49 49

I wouldn't be surprised if they could get some more specific clues on what water it's been in - for example, marine growth species types or isotopic ratios - to help pin it down better than just general drift calculations (lots of places could dump debris on Réunion). There are could also be potential clues on how much sun or what temperatures it's been exposed to, such as rates of plastic degradation, and perhaps that might also help give them better ideas of what areas it's been in based on weather patterns since the flight was lost.

There are so many potential clues... each one rather vague on its own, but all together, I imagine they'll get pointed in the right direction.

Comment Re:Trucking (Score 1) 687 687

While in general I think battery swapping is a stupid idea for cars (there's way too much need for different form factors, capacities, performance capabilities, etc, and it makes up such an integral part of the structure due to its size and mass and represents such a great amount of capital one would have to stockpile), I think it could actually work incredibly well for trucks. Rather than having them in the cab, I picture them slotting under the trailers (where various hardware is already often slotted), with a power connection to the cab. It would in such a situation be very easy to have a single form factor for the batteries and very easy to remove and reinstall them - you already have a standardized shape, easy undercarriage access, and the structural strength is already right where you need it. And whenever a truck picks up a new trailer that's been sitting around for a while, it could be already charged and ready to go. The cab would of course need its own batteries to haul itself around a good distance when not towing a load, but the trailers could basically hold the power for their own towing needs. And it would have little effect on an empty trailer's cost - it just needs the mounts for the batteries installed and the wiring to feed the cab, but would otherwise be a normal trailer haulable by any vehicle.

Comment Re:Error 1 (Score 1) 687 687

Indeed - and they can sell people on the concept pretty easily. Rather than saying "We're going to have you charge inside our store to tempt you to buy things", they'd sell the concept as "Remember back in the day when you used to have to fill up your car with gasoline out in the cold / heat / wind / rain / etc? Now we're enabling you to charge your car in comfort indoors in our stores because we love the environment so much and want to support people like you - you're welcome!"

Comment Re:Truck Stops, Gas Stations, etc (Score 1) 687 687

Now, for electric cars to put them out of business, they'd have to be a relevant percentage of total vehicles - and overall, that will certainly take time. But the case becomes different in specialty markets. Different states and localities will (and already do) offer different EV incentives, and the natural use case for EVs varies between locations (urban/suburban/rural, mild vs. hot vs. cold climate, terrain, geography (isolated islands or areas without good road connects to the outside world, for example), areas with different driver profiles, and so forth). So an overall EV adoption rate of 1% might actually be 10%, 20% or more in certain areas. That could well be enough to start driving gas stations out of business in such areas, creating a potential contageon effect.

That said, business owners aren't stupid, and one expects them to adapt. For example, where appropriate one would expect gas stations to respond to increasing EV penetration by adding rapid charge stations. Electricity is cheap, but if someone needs a rapid charge (for a road trip or whatnot), they'll pay the going rate, even if it's similar to the cost of gasoline per unit distance traveled. They're not just going to say "meh, I'll just plug into a wall socket and wait overnight". So if you have an existing gas station with all of its capital costs of installing tanks and pumps already paid for, one would expect them to keep selling gasoline even as an increasing percentage of their customers switch over to electricity. Maybe they'll find it cheaper to remove broken pumps than fix them. Maybe they'll eventually hit a point where it's no longer cost effective to maintain their fuel tanks and have to stop selling gasoline altogether. But neither of these things are a "suddenly going out of business because EVs just showed up" scenario.

(Of course, there's a counter to what I just wrote, which is that - given that only a small percentage of EV charging will ever be fast charging - you're looking at a smaller potential market)

Comment Re:Truck Stops, Gas Stations, etc (Score 4, Interesting) 687 687

Randomly, the pump will display "please see register for receipt" upon selecting the print option. I've see it being random as the person after me (a friend), had his receipt print just fine. It's a fucking scam to lure people into the store and buy shit.

Comment Re:Streaming doesn't work (Score 1) 148 148

No, this lust for streaming is really for cloud content providers. The idea that you have a thin-client gaming console and the hardware is virtual to the player. Want to upgrade your experience with more CPU cycles and better video? Easy, make a one-time payment and add a virtual upgrade module. Or perhaps you can play different games at different "experience index levels" which really amps up the back-end hardware requirement. It's how the infrastructure gets paid for.

I don't mind the above model in some instances. Effectively, the console capability grows with the backend upgrades. But, let's not be under false understanding of what service model streaming is really for; and the consumer should be made aware of non-tangble upgrades and virtual hardware purchases.

Comment Re:A much more efficient air conditioner, too? (Score 1) 209 209

8500 BTU might cool a room reasonably well, but its not going to provide whole-house cooling, either, and would require a pretty large battery array to run off battery. It might make sense for some kind of supplemental cooling setup where it ran direct off solar panels.

Translation: Turn your detached garage attic into a whole new room. Place solar panels on the roof and cool it with a Sharp Air Conditioner. With renting, you can now pay back your investment and then some. Winning!

Comment Re:So far so good.... (Score 1) 309 309

You mean the creator of OS/2 went back in time and destroyed planet Redmond, causing a split in the timeline, forking Windows development down a new path of teh ultra shiny and full of lens flare? And somewhere, a very old Jobs is walking around in a black robe, whispering to his younger self?

If you didn't have to work so hard, you'd have more time to be depressed.