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Comment Re:Just attention seeking, no substance (Score 1) 493

The whole thing smelled of bullshit from day zero. It's much easier for the US to get someone extradited from the UK than it is for them to extradite someone from Sweden, so the whole running-to-the-embassy thing never made sense, except as a possible means to escape being tried for rape. If the US really wanted him, they'd have had the extradition process started with the UK long before Assange went to the Ecuadorian embassy.

Comment Re:The Average Viewer (Score 1) 434

Some don't though. I remember a conversation I had with my grandfather (who used to repair TVs) in the pub when he was in his 80s, somehow we got onto talking about the new stuff that was coming out. HD wasn't really a thing yet - and he commented it didn't seem worth getting a large TV because how visible the lines would be (and additionally, it'd be even worse for people in NTSC countries with about 100 fewer lines).

Comment Re:so is there a good theory? (Score 1) 470

It's happening anyway, every last joule of that tidal energy is already being used, it's just being used up by crashing up and down shorelines rather than turning turbines. Tidal power merely extracts some of the energy that would have otherwise been dissipated on the shoreline, so there's no net effect on the moon anyway.

Comment Re:Work done=kinetic energy (Score 1) 470

> Now connect it to a generator and extract enough power such that it doesn't accelerate any more, but doesn't slow down

This here is the impossible bit. Just because you can /momentarily/ extract 6-odd kw at the shaft, it doesn't mean you can keep doing it forever. You may find that any more power extracted than just the friction in the bearings will slow your hypothetical wheel down.

1000Nm torque doesn't say anything about the power you can continuously extract.

Comment Re:Contra-Indicated. (Score 1) 263

You don't bankrupt a company by selling its shares.

You might make its share price lower, which in some cases might make it a tasty takeover target, but the price of a company's shares on the secondary market doesn't affect in any way shape or form the running of a business. You're only selling your ownership stake in the company to some other person.

With a well run company like Shell, if you divest shares and the price of the shares go down, it will be somewhat self correcting. The dividend yield will go up - the business's viability hasn't changed, so the dividend remains the same but you can buy into that with a lower share price - making the company more attractive to people who don't have a problem with owning shares in oil companies - thus stopping the share price from falling very far.

The only way you're actually going to hurt Shell is for everyone to stop buying their product. That isn't going to happen any time soon. It might happen over the long term, oil usage vs GDP has been falling for some time now. But selling Shell shares isn't going to put them out of business since it literally doesn't affect them.

Comment Re:Farm? Hardly (Score 4, Interesting) 196

Britain is not the best comparison for Europe. First off, Britain is always a laggard when it comes to clean power - it was a laggard just in cleaning up its act with sulphur emissions with the coal plants. The UK is also not really Europe and generally doesn't subscribe to Europe's more progressive policies when it comes to energy. Expect a lot of backsliding on this once Brexit is complete and EU regulations are no longer pulling the UK kicking and screaming into the 21st century.

Comment Re:What about stop making stuff super thin? (Score 1) 289

They aren't that fragile. My Dad has my old iPhone 4, it's never been kept in a thick plastic or silicone case, and it still looks nearly as good as new despite now being 6 years old (and on its original battery!)

My iPhone 6 which replaced it, when it came out, has never been in a case. It rattles around in my pocket with everything else in there. It's now 2 years old and still looks practically brand new despite never having been in a case and having been dropped once or twice.

They aren't anywhere near as fragile as people think. They are actually pretty tough.

Comment Re:No, they didn't. (Score 4, Interesting) 1028

"Wipe out" is indeed what it would do.

Let's imagine this is a MIRV with 15 separate warheads, totaling 50 megatons, total (maybe). Let's imagine the targets are the following British cities: London, Bristol, Plymouth, Portsmouth, Birmingham, Sheffield, Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds, Newcastle, Glasgow, Edinborough, with the larger ones receiving two warheads.

Britain would basically cease to exist as a nation. So much damage would be done the economy would be non-functional. All the transport links in the country flow through those now destroyed cities, and that infrastructure would be destroyed. Every single piece of modern electronics in the country and in neighbouring countries that was not EMP hardened would no longer work, and everything (especially the transportation system) depends on all this stuff working. The prevailing south west winds would ensure that enough fallout would end up on surrounding areas adding to the casualties, and areas with nearby nuclear power stations would receive a lot of extra fallout. Just feeding the survivors with a barely functioning transportation system would be a logistical nightmare - ground transportation would be difficult thanks most of the major road and rail routes having been destroyed. Injured survivors would be left to fend for themselves - the entire capacity of the health service would be overwhelmed with the casualties of just one of the bombs. The electricity grid would be destroyed, even to the undamaged areas, it would be years before power was restored.

The survivors themselves, many of them would be suffering PTSD in the years afterwards, and virtually everyone will have lost friends and family and probably most of what they own in the attacks. What survived wouldn't be Britain, it would be a grotesque almost zombie like Britain with at best third world conditions for decades following.

Just because there are survivors and some land left untouched doesn't mean the country is effectively destroyed.

Comment Re: Hmm (Score 1) 1028

> You think Russia is going to bother bombing North Dakota?

Yes, absolutely North Dakota would be bombed, because that's where a bunch of American missile silos are, and Minot AFB. North Dakota might not exactly be carpet bombed but it would be the recipient of more and larger weapons than you might think.

> A nuclear war would be horrifying but it wouldn't wipe out all life on earth

No, but human life afterwards wouldn't be much fun for generations, and even after the planet had recovered, would be like pre-industrial times. A nuclear winter caused by an all out exchange would be deeply unpleasant and finish off most of the survivors. Industrial society would unlikely ever restart, given the lack of people and lack of easy to mine resources (to get much of the resources we use now requires an already existing high technology base, that would no longer exist after a catastrophic exchange of nuclear weapons).

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