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Comment Re:Shoudl be a warning to people working on fusion (Score 1) 146

Its difficult to imagine a fusion plant being less expensive to build or operate than a fission plant. Even if we can figure out how to get net energy gain from fusion it may never make economic sense.

When you take into account the difference in decommissioning costs, you win. Unless your plan is to continue to push those costs off onto The People.

Comment Re:It was bound to happen (Score 1) 146

And, had TEPCO (not Westinghouse) followed their site engineers' directions and built a better sea wall, NOTHING WOULD HAVE HAPPENED.

Yes, or if they had placed the backup generators on pylons. Or if they had observed the ages-old stone marker that said "don't build anything below this point because it can flood", that would also have done the trick.

However, any reactor design which requires external power to scram is inherently unsafe and should be decommissioned immediately, because unforeseen events occur, and develop into unforeseen consequences.

Comment Re:It's just too expensive (Score 1) 146

Natural gas is abnormally low at the moment as it appears to me.

Natural gas' low, low price is the result of fracking. It's abominably low.

The real trouble is the price of nuclear is entirely up front, one massive lump sum and more than a decade to build (largely due to litigation). After that, the fuel is just this side of free considering the power you can produce from it,

That is only because the industry is allowed to push thousands of years of externalities (from mine tailings) off onto everyone else on the planet.

even factoring in decommissioning fund set asides.

The decommissioning always costs more than it is supposed to. And you also don't get to crow about the total cost until the waste is either reprocessed or safely interred.

Renewable are hitting nuclear pretty hard too. Not because they make sense based on cost,

If you account for externalities, which anyone who likes breathing should care about, they make a hell of a lot more sense based on cost.

Basically the government is funding renewable build-out on the backs of the utility companies,

The ones that have been willfully poisoning us? You shouldn't have skipped Erin Brockovich. It wasn't a great movie, but it does ram the point home.

Solar isn't doing much good that time of year, and wind turbines don't turn in a vortex calm.

The answer is more storage and a more robust grid that actually permits shipping power around the country as needed. Our infrastructure is pathetic.

Comment Re:It's just too expensive (Score 1) 146

Kill birds, dam rivers, gobble up real-estate and cover it with semi-toxic panels for solar, spew sulfur and mercury into the air, all forms of electricity production have their prices.

But only coal and nuclear are based on strip mining, and leave toxic tailings behind in every case even though the industry claims it has learned to take care of all that. Coal and oil each kill more birds than solar, and we now make bigger, slower wind turbines that kill less birds. Solar panels are now required not to leach their contents when landfilled and even you have had to drop your rhetoric from saying "toxic" to "semi-toxic". Maybe you should try actually dropping your rhetoric from toxic to semi-toxic, if you care so much about pollution. You're spreading a lot of it around.

Comment Re:It's just too expensive (Score 1) 146

On the plus side, everyone learned a lot from Chernobyl. Including that the "radioactive wasteland" that a meltdown was supposed to produce was an imaginary problem...

Yeah, instead it produces a radioactive exclusion zone, where even on its fringes only old people can live without substantially increasing their cancer risk. And cancer rates already doubled during the industrial revolution, without the lifespan increasing sufficiently to account for the difference. And we learned fuck-all.

Comment Re:This is why I'll never use Verizon or Sprint (Score 1) 85

I predict that within two years unlocked bootloaders will be a thing of the past, simply because providers will check on bootloader status and deny access to any phone that hasn't drunk their Kool-Aid.

I predict that is a lot of bollocks. We're ostensibly getting the right to repair cellphones for three years. It's going to be at least three. :)

Seriously though, some manufacturers will keep selling phones with unlocked bootloaders as long as we nerds keep telling people not to buy phones with locked bootloaders. So GET THE WORD OUT.

Comment Re:Just install a 3rd party ROM on the phone (Score 1) 85

Samsung has an all-Samsung operating system now, has a replacement for Qualcom's processor that's made in house, and is quickly developing their own apps to replace most of googles. Very soon, the Number 1 manufacturer of phones is going to be able to step away from both companies.

OK, that begs some questions. Is their operating system in fact good enough to compete? Are their apps in fact good enough to compete? Because I don't think they are. And if they aren't, then no, they won't be able to step away from both companies. They're still going to need Google to be successful. There's just not room for another handset manufacturer in the market, at least, not to be successful. While they have their flaws, neither Android nor iOS is unable to run your phone.

Android is by far the dominant system. If Samsung is going to put a dent in anything, it's going to be iOS, not Android. They might well take users away from Apple's walled garden, and move them into theirs. But even if they stop making Android phones entirely... they'll be back.

Comment Re:Background and the real issue (Score 1) 212

The thing I don't believe is that a non-voter is a rational actor who would have gladly gone to the polls except that somehow they felt their vote didn't matter. Nope. They're apathetic or lazy.

I know personally people who generally vote, but haven't bothered to vote in some elections because they felt the outcome didn't matter, or their vote didn't matter; or who would have voted differently if their vote mattered. For example, since I knew that California would vote Clinton, I was free to vote Stein as a protest vote since she was literally the only candidate on the ballot who gave one tenth of one shit about the environment, and real substantive change in that area. But if we had actually democratic voting, then I would have voted for Clinton, because my vote would have meant something to the outcome. I might just as well have stayed home, given the outcome of the vote.

Comment Re:Different organs (Score 1) 62

You can do smell with just chemicals, but you can't do taste with just chemicals delivered to the nose, not least because much of what we call taste is actually smell. Also, while the tongue may be pretty simple, you can still tell the difference (if you already know it) between real and fake flavors.

Comment Re: A Hubert J. Farnsworth worthy invention (Score 1) 62

Behind? We have already have smellovision. Demonstration units have been shown off at recent game expos

No, we don't already have smellovision. There were two different companies demonstrating one at GDC 2000. Guess how many of them made it to market?

Wake me up when you can actually buy a smellovision product at Fry's. Not Micro Center, either. Fry's.

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