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Comment: Base Loads (Score 2) 835

by z00_miak (#38159078) Attached to: The Myth of Renewable Energy

What the article fails to mention, and what most people fail to understand, is that renewable sources of energy such as wind and solar are not suitable to replace the majority of conventional power sources. Your average pro-renewable energy advocate would have you believe you can throw a bunch of turbines and solar panels onto the grid and solve all your problems: unfortunately you need to supply your base load with guaranteed sources.

It sounds simple enough when you think about it, but you can't replace a coal, nuclear (or hydro power plant in certain cases) with solar or wind because those plants supply a large amount of power all of the time. If the wind isn't blowing or the sun isn't shining, nobody is getting electricity. This relegates these sources of power as contributors, not dominant supplies of electricity.

Comment: Re:Good luck with that in Canada (Score 1) 133

by z00_miak (#37628002) Attached to: Microsoft To Bring Cable TV To 360
Actually they're already 'playing in the sandpit': you can use a 360 with Telus Optik TV, since they already use Microsoft Mediaroom as their digital TV platform software. They were even giving away 360s as a signup bonus a while back.

Maybe this article is suggesting Microsoft's intent to bypass incumbent providers, otherwise it's missing the mark, at least for Canada: if you were signed up for any content like HBO (through Telus) you can already view it using your 360.

United States

Iowa Seeks To Remove Electoral College 1088

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the not-cancelling-their-caucus-i-bet dept.
Zebano writes "Since changing the US constitution is too much work, the Iowa senate is considering a bill that would send all 7 of Iowa's electoral votes to the winner of the national popular vote in a presidential election. This would only go into affect after enough states totaling 270 electoral votes (enough to elect a president) adopted similar resolutions."
The Courts

Halo 3 Criticized In Murder Conviction 839

Posted by Soulskill
from the master-chief-charged-as-an-accessory dept.
oldwindways writes "An Ohio teen was found guilty of murdering his mother and shooting his father in the head after they took away his copy of Halo 3. One has to wonder if this is going to have any effect on the games industry. Clearly, the AP thought they could stir up something controversial by asking the IP owner for a statement: 'Microsoft, which owns the intellectual property for the game, declined to comment beyond a statement saying: "We are aware of the situation and it is a tragic case."' I suppose the good news is they did not accept his insanity plea, so no one can claim that Halo 3 drove him insane. Even so, I don't think anything good can come out of this for gamers." Unfortunately, it seems somebody can claim that the game was a contributing factor; the judge who presided over this case said he believes that the 17-year-old defendant "had no idea at the time he hatched this plot that if he killed his parents, they would be dead forever." GamePolitics has further details from the judge's statement. It doesn't help that the boy's lawyers used video game addiction as a defense.

Comment: Re:We need a national science and engineering agen (Score 5, Insightful) 308

by z00_miak (#26364363) Attached to: Why Does the US Have a Civil Space Program?

The problem with 'scaling back' NASA is that it's not like a factory or a bunch of servers that you can just switch back on in 5 years with a bit of maintenance.

If you cut funding and they have to cut engineering jobs, you're going to lose talent: experience that may not return when you decide you're in another space race.

Input Devices

Logitech Makes 1 Billionth Mouse 456

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the so-much-carpal-tunnel dept.
Smivs writes "Logitech has hailed as a major landmark the production of their one billionth computer mouse. The news comes at a time when analysts claim the days of the mouse are numbered. 'It's rare in human history that a billionth of anything has been shipped by one company,' said Logitech's general manager Rory Dooley. 'Look at any other industry and it has never happened. This is a significant milestone.' The computer mouse will achieve a milestone of its own next week when it turns 40. It was 9 December 1968 when Douglas C. Engelbart and his group of researchers at Stanford University put the first mouse through its paces."
Security

Estonian ISP Shuts Srizbi Back Down, For Now 237

Posted by kdawson
from the informal-pressure dept.
wiedzmin writes "In response to the recent resurrection of the Srizbi botnet, an Estonian ISP has shut down the hosting company that was housing its new control servers. Starline Web Services, based in Estonia's capital Tallinn, had become the new home for the Srizbi botnet control center after the McColo hosting company (which was taken down earlier this month) has briefly come back to life last week, allowing the botnet to hand-off control to the Estonian network. After Estonia's biggest ISP Linxtelecom demanded that Starline Web Service be taken offline, the newly acquired Srizbi control servers went down with it. However, as the rootkit is armed with an algorithm that periodically generates new domain names where the malware then looks for new instructions, it is only a matter of time before a new set of control servers is created and used to manipulate one of the biggest spam botnets in the world."
HP

HP Seeks to Block Competitor From Revealing Its Pricing 144

Posted by timothy
from the whaddya-mean-the-price-tag's-showing? dept.
Matt Asay writes "On October 13, 2008, Hewlett-Packard sent a complaint to an open-source competitor, GroundWork, asking GroundWork to stop revealing HP's 'confidential' pricing. CNET has posted the letter, which indicates that HP doesn't want its pricing revealed, but which doesn't question the veracity of the pricing (which, not surprisingly, is 82 percent higher than the open-source vendor's). Does HP think its pricing is really a secret? It's publicly available at GSA Advantage. Guess what? HP software costs a lot of money, but presumably feels that it can justify the high prices. Why try to hide the pricing information?"
Government

It's Official, Australia Needs a Space Agency 199

Posted by kdawson
from the bird-on-the-barbie dept.
Dante_J writes "In the final report published by the Australian Senate inquiry into 'The Current State of Australia's Space Science & Industry Sector' entitled 'Lost in Space? Setting a new direction for Australia's space science and industry sector,' it calls for the formation of a 'Space Industry Advisory Council' to oversee the creation of a fully-fledged Australian Space Agency. Of the top 20 GDP nations, Australia is the only one without a Space Agency, which impacts on many aspects of ordinary life, not to mention Research and Engineering endeavors. Every satellite operated by Australia is owned by another party and the costs of this alone are comparable to that of a Space Agency. The report is a tidy piece that drew upon submissions form Andy Thomas, and an impressive collection of Australian Academics and Space Science entities frustrated by successive generations of government apathy. While this report is welcome, lethargic Government action in a climate of competing concerns is not expected to stem the flow of Space Science brain drain out of Australia any time soon."
The Internet

Nationwide Domain Name/Yard Sign Conspiracy 324

Posted by timothy
from the tragically-yes-I'm-single dept.
robertjmoore writes "Everywhere I go lately, I see these lawn signs that say "Single?" and then give a URL with my town's name in it. Being a huge business intelligence geek with too much time on my hands, I decided to track down who was behind them and wound up uncovering ten thousand domain names, a massively coordinated and well-funded guerilla marketing machine, and the $45 Million revenue business hiding behind it all. Hot off the presses, these are my findings."
Graphics

How To Make Money With Free Software 187

Posted by timothy
from the actual-money dept.
fons writes "Dutch Python hacker/artist Stani took part in a contest organised by the Dutch Ministry Of Finance to design a 5 euro commemorative coin. And he won, using only free software: 'The whole design was done for 100% with free software. The biggest part consists of custom software in Python, of course within the SPE editor. For the visual power I used PIL and pyCairo. From time to time also Gimp, Inkscape and Phatch helped quite a bit. All the developing and processing was done on GNU/Linux machines which were running Ubuntu/Debian. I would have loved to release the coin under the GPL, which could maybe solve the financial crisis. However for obvious reasons I was not allowed to do that.'"
Space

Multiple Asteroid Belts Found Orbiting Nearby Star 135

Posted by Soulskill
from the no-word-on-asteroid-suspenders dept.
Kligat writes "Scientists have found two asteroid belts around the star Epsilon Eridani, the ninth closest star to our solar system. Epsilon Eridani also possesses an icy outer ring similar in composition to our Kuiper Belt, but with 100 times more material, and a Jovian mass planet near the edge of the innermost belt. Researchers believe that two other planets must orbit the 850 million year old star near the other two belts. Terrestrial planets are possible, but not yet indicated."
The Courts

$125 Million Settlement In Authors Guild v. Google 238

Posted by timothy
from the something-had-to-give dept.
James Gleick writes "Authors, publishers, and Google are announcing a huge settlement deal today in their lawsuits over the scanning of millions of copyrighted books in library collections. Google has agreed to a huge payout for books that were scanned without permission, but now they'll be allowed to scan the books legitimately. Most important, they'll be able to put millions of books online, including those still in copyright — not just for searching and not just in snippets. There is a groundbreaking new licensing system meant to make the books as widely available as possible while protecting the authors' copyrights and enabling them to share in the revenue. Some will differ, but personally I think this is a wonderful outcome, for readers and for authors alike."

What this country needs is a good five dollar plasma weapon.

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