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Comment: Re: The authors found that batteries appear on tra (Score 4, Informative) 330 330

At the moment, the Tesla Model S battery pack is definitely expensive and likely costs consumers about $25,000 for the 85 kWh battery pack. It is likely to last somewhere around 300,000 to 500,000 miles. People are basically paying between $0.05 and $0.08 per mile for it. At a national average of $0.12 per kWh and you get 3 miles/kWh, the electricity cost per mile is about $0.04. With special time of use rates, it is possible to pay for electricity at half that price. Which means $0.02 per mile. That means the cost of electricity + the battery pack = $0.07 to 0.12 per mile.

Assuming super unleaded costs $2.50/gallon, here are some comparisons:
BMW M5, 16 mpg combined, $0.16 per mile.
Jaguar XF, 23 mpg combined, $0.11 per mile

Usually where electricity is expensive, gasoline is also expensive.

Of course, if you are doing this kind of comparison, you are basically removing $25,000 from the price of the car and placing it under the energy/fuel column. So looking at total cost of ownership makes the most sense. Most people aren't yet used to looking at the TCO for a vehicle so electric cars look more expensive up front but if you examine TCO, you'll see that, in many cases, they are less expensive.

Comment: Re:I hope they succeed, but... (Score 5, Interesting) 426 426

GM's Michigan battery plant (joint with LG) that makes the batteries for the Volt and the upcoming Bolt (according to the WSJ) has only the capacity to make batteries for 20,000 Bolts *or* 60,000 Volts, which means the initial production runs of the Bolt is likely significantly lower than 10,000 vehicles per year. If they want to make many more Bolts, they have to build about 5.5-6 gigawatt-hours of production capacity per 100,000 vehicles. Their current plant needs expansion just to hit a little more than 1 gigawatt.

The Tesla Gigafactory is expected to make 35 gigawatt-hours of cell production and combined with another 15 gigawatt-hours from Panasonic's factories, they represent a doubling of the world's lithium ion production from 2013. Until GM/LG or others announce, finance, and build plants of that size, they won't have the batteries in any large quantity.

Comment: Re:Lacking developers. (Score 1) 189 189

You can't trust IDC data.

Also, treating Android as a single thing is a mistake. You really have to separate out Google Play Android versus Android Open Source Project. They aren't the same thing in terms of how the market behaves, pricing, and the consumer experience.

Comment: Re:First 64bit (Score 1) 208 208

Many make the wrong assumption that 64 bit processor means only increasing the memory pointers to 64 bit. This is not the case with the transition from the A6 to the A7. The instruction set changed from ARMv7s to ARMv8 (or ARM64). There are performance gains to be made moving to a new, revised ISA for which 64 bit is but one of the characteristics. Further, Apple has been working on their toolchain and they can leverage certain software compiler improvements especially within the Objective C runtime, like tagged pointers and inline reference counting that are made possible with 64 bit pointers.

See: https://www.mikeash.com/pyblog...

Comment: Coding vs. Degree is not Theory vs. Practice (Score 1) 546 546

Absolutely, to be a top notch software developer, learning to code trumps a CS degree. After all, you can get a degree but who knows how much attention you really paid in class. Further, learning to code goes beyond what is taught in a CS degree.

However, this isn't an issue of theory vs. practice. It's like saying, would you rather have a surgeon that learned surgery the traditional route with 4 year degree heavy in science, specifically biology classes and then went to med school, etc, or a self taught surgeon that learned at a field hospital during a war? Obviously, both would have to learn the basics of surgery itself, that is the actual cutting, the sewing, etc. The former is likely to have a far better grounding in a wider range of subjects to treat the patient, even if the a particular of the latter might be better at the actual cutting and sewing.

When one graduates with a CS degree, they might not have yet learned how to code, especially in a professional setting in a group. A coder can learn everything that a person with a CS degree learned, but that is basically going to each of the CS classes. Sometimes the hinderance to getting the degree isn't the CS classes, it's the other classes required for an undergraduate degree. In either case, to be a very good coder, you basically have to master both the theory and the practice.

Comment: Re:Nevada is the only candidate (Score 1) 172 172

Lithium is probably under 4% of the total mass of the battery. Tesla's battery is primarily composed of lithium, nickel, aluminum, cobalt, and graphite. Nickel and aluminum are the big constituents by mass of the battery. Total lithium mass per battery is probably around 20kg. For 1,000,000 cars, that's about 22,000 tons. That might be enough to start production in the U.S., but more likely, Canada will supply most of the initial amounts of raw materials including the nickel and lithium.

Comment: Poor password selection (Score 1) 59 59

This "hack" sounds like they brute forced a weak password on the service that that provides access to the Model S mobile apps. That password is shared with the "My Tesla" owner's website. It is possible to set that password to a far longer and complex password, certainly far longer than 6 characters. I suspect this contest was rigged and someone set the password to "111111" or something like that.

The car itself talks to Tesla using an OpenVPN session over 3G or Wifi.

Comment: Re:I've always thought that the best way for Israe (Score 2) 379 379

This reasoning, on the face of it, is absolutely ridiculous.

Because one side is very advanced militarily and the other side is not, then the side that is very advanced needs to let the other side have a fairer fight? No. Not at all.

A mugger comes at you with a knife. If you have a gun, that's not fair, you need to let the mugger with the knife stab you a few times before you pull the trigger?

Or let's say the other side has a stone, and is perfectly happy to hit you over the head repeatedly with it until you are dead. You have a M240 light machine gun. Very asymmetrical. You can take out the guy with the stone and a few of his buddies with a burst. But no! Unfair! They should be given machine guns too to make this fair. You should wait until they are given machine guns. Matter of fact, you can watch them get machine guns. So you wait to make sure they get all set up with their new donated machine guns, make sure they get the right training so that they know how to kill you with it, since it is only fair, right? No. If this were you, you would kill them if they are trying to kill you, no matter what weapons they possess, no matter how asymmetrical the military technology.

We are in very twisted times, as Hamas knows it can't really hurt Israel militarily with these tactics, but is very willing to provoke the situation such that they get pummeled. Each time Hamas provokes a pummeling, they get more funding and better weaponry from outside sources and more sympathy from both within and around the world. In the short term, Hamas has no hope of winning militarily. However, they hope that in the long term, they can grow strong enough to take on Israel militarily and wipe them out.

Comment: Re:Panasonic (Score 3, Interesting) 151 151

At the cell level, Tesla is probably already paying under $250/kWh. Maybe even just under $200/kWh. That's below most lithium iron phosphate battery costs which are already competitive with lead acid batteries for total life cycle costs in an off-grid solar battery setup. So this "too expensive" comment is probably not right. Further, if they recycle battery cells from transportation use to grid storage use, then the costs could be far lower.

Comment: Re:If this was Apple... (Score 1) 258 258

I think you are lying. Sources?

Approximately the same way would be deliberately checking for a benchmark and artificially boosting performance to do well on that particular benchmark which is un-producable outside of that benchmark.

That is not the same thing as choosing benchmarks your product is good and and highlighting those benchmarks in your marketing material. That's just highlighting your strengths.

Comment: Re:Link Baiting This? (Score 1) 420 420

I have a Nokia 770 Internet Tablet. It was an interesting idea. Apple would never have shipped a product in that state of development. This was certainly not a marketing failure. It was a product creation failure. It wasn't usable - instead, it was a glimpse at something that might be interesting if they iterated on the software. At least when Microsoft ships utter crap 1.0, they usually follow up with not so crappy 2.0 and halfway decent 3.0. Nokia's follow ons were not so interesting in the primary area that mattered - the software. Same problem with the Sharp Zaurus.

The rule on staying alive as a forecaster is to give 'em a number or give 'em a date, but never give 'em both at once. -- Jane Bryant Quinn

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