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Comment Re:What if... (Score 2) 212

I don't know if you've realized this, but the universe is an insane place. Time dilation, quantum entanglement, particle/wave duality, cosmic inflation, the very existence of all these forces and more are all incredibly wacky-sounding theories until we find out they seem to be real. I mean, what the fuck is gravity and *why* is it there? What is time?

I mean, have you seen how large the observable universe is? How the FUCK did all that shit get there? It's wacky. I'd be more concerned at this point if the theories weren't wacky. I've been on a physics and cosmology lecture kick on youtube, and at this point it would seem weirder if multiverse theory were wrong. Otherwise, why the hell is our universe the one that happened?

Comment Re:Reduced revenues != lost profit (Score 1) 280

I said pretty clearly:

"As long as an industry is growing - there will be money to invest in lowering costs."

Once everyone is drinking milk, there isn't much room to dump money into lowering costs, because the profit gets squeeze out of the industry from competition. Many things do hit a floor and level out in price. But there is no reason to believe solar is anywhere near that floor. The raw material - silicon - is one of the cheapest and most abundant materials on the planet. Those lower cost rules don't go on forever for all products, but they are valid for periods of development in a product's life cycle. And I believe solar power will be one of the most important products of this century, so there is lots of room for growth. Humans cannot afford to keep hurting the Earth to get our energy, and solar presents a clear opportunity to harvest thousands of times more energy than we currently use. The technology is already on par with the cost of fossil fuels and we will continue to find ways to make it cheaper and more efficient.

Also, Milk is cheaper. You just can't tell because our dollars aren't worth the same amount. According to a short search, in 1950 a gallon of milk was $0.80, which is $7.88 in today's money. Milk is cheaper because we have enormous milk factories now, not little farms that have to support a bunch of workers.

And OF COURSE you can't reduce the cost of something below the cost of raw materials, but as I said in my previous post you CAN reduce the cost of raw materials by investing in better mining equipment.

Comment Re:2% is nothing (Score 1) 121

I'm gonna have to throw this one back at you buddy... You don't know what you're talking about. Military spending is about half of social welfare spending (a good rule of thumb for our budgets is about 1/3 Military, 1/3 Medicare/Medicaid, and 1/3 Social Security). That has been true for a while now. See this graphic for actual data:

But the thing is, Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security are all programs where Americans pay into a program and then get that money back at a later date either as direct cash or as medical care. Military spending, on the other hand, is money that goes nowhere. Sure, we employ Americans, but if your plan to promote jobs is to just give everyone a government job then we might as well be socialist. Hundreds of millions of dollars of military spending goes to bombs we literally vaporize. A shitload of money in the last decade went to building those big ass MRAP trucks that cost $1m apiece that we ended up handing to local law enforcement around the country for free because the military never actually needed them. The US bought $485m in new jets from Italy for Afghanistan and then scrapped them for $32k because they didn't work.
US Military spending is RIFE with pork.

Do you know how large the military budget is? It is way too big. In 2010 the budget was $700 Billion a year. In 2000 it was only $300B a year, and we were still BY FAR the world's largest military. We've added $400 BILLION dollars to our YEARLY military budget in the last 14 years. And it wasn't Obama that committed to that military spending, it was Bush. The president who committed to massive wars without paying for them (actually decreasing taxes at the same time).

This is how our military spending stacks up to the rest of the world.

If Obama wanted to add $10B a year to helping Americans, you'd probably flip. But unchecked spending on the military is just fine by you?

The budget that is going through the House tonight has $490 Million for a fighter jet that doesn't work and the military does not want. Meanwhile, we are cutting $92 million from the food stamp program.

Military spending in this country is fucking insane man, you literally have no idea. I can tell by your invocation of Obamacare as somehow a significant force in our debt that in fact you have no idea what you are talking about. Obamacare doesn't move the needle. And don't just shout that you know otherwise. You've been lied to and you've eaten it up. Go find the factual data that says Obamacare increased our budget by even 1% of our military spending. It's okay, I'll wait.

Comment Re:2% is nothing (Score 4, Insightful) 121

If the $10k was for his daughter to go to a mid-level college, but he was also spending $180k on gambling, buying guns he'll never use, and paying for personal protection far beyond what he needed, I'd suggest he cut those latter expenses before cutting the $10k for his daughter.

These decisions are not made in a vacuum. You can't chide a spender for putting money into science but fail to address the huge waste in other areas. And don't say "well yeah we need to cut both". Pick the optimum place to start, and start there first. Don't cut science while we're still dumping money into war. If we fix war spending (which is not investing money back into Americans), then we can discuss how much we spend on science. And funny thing... "your friend" wouldn't be in debt at all if it weren't for that military spending (yeah, mixing metahphor...), and you'd find the could spend even more money on science. In fact, doubling his science budget would be no problem.

So a better question would be:

You friend makes $400k per year. He spends $180k on himself, $180k on his house, $180k on stuff he likes, and $10k on his kids (meaning he loses $150k due to overspending every year). He says he wants to spend more on his kids because it pays off in the long term. Do you tell him not to? Or do you tell him to go for it and chill out on the stuff he likes so he doesn't go deeper into debt.

Interestingly, my sig has been this way for ~4 years.

Comment Re:Reduced revenues != lost profit (Score 1) 280

Haha, wow... What an incredibly narrow view of the world you have. These "laws" are absolutely not nonsense. It is a real, broadly documented effect that the cost to produce goods in a large industry continually declines as a manufacturer learns over and over all the places they can reduce costs.

A manufacturer may come up with a trick to increase yield one year, so that there is 10% less product that falls out of the line after manufacturing due to defects. They may build more factories closer to consumers to reduce delivery costs. They may buy bigger machines to spit out twice as much goods for the same amount of labor, cutting labor costs in half. Their suppliers could get better at making the machines, offering faster machines for the same price - cutting down on overhead costs per part. The mines who supply the silicon could get more customers and invest in better machinery too, similarly decreasing their costs (which they can pass on to the consumer of those materials). Researchers can find new materials (like carbon for solar) that are cheaper than traditional materials. They could double efficiency for the same amount of material, cutting costs in half again.

Companies continually improve their processes to maintain their edge in a competitive marketplace. There is always someone who will come in and undercut you, so you need to be able to continually improve your processes or you will die. The whole phenomenon of continually lower prices was identified in the 1960's, and has repeatedly been shown to be valid over long terms. Moore's law for semiconductors is one great example, and solar panels still have huge demand above what we currently need them for. These laws apply to all kinds of things though... I'm sure it applies to tires, paper, pencils, shoes, televisions, LEDs, batteries, windows, magnets, etc. As long as an industry is growing - there will be money to invest in lowering costs.

You do need a place to put solar panels, but every rooftop in the country has more than enough room to power the underlying building with solar using just today's 20% efficient solar cells. We need power at night, but Elon Musk thinks lithium batteries will work just fine, and we have enough lithium to increase our use 20% every single year for 30 years before we'd need to even look for more. Lithium is one of the most abundant materials on the planet and the batteries are easy to recycle. Musk has said he plans on selling 30% of the batteries from his new factory to solar home customers (and he already owns a solar panel factory and a solar installation and leasing company). A solar-driven world seems very, very plausible.

Plus, we literally cannot afford to keep burning fossil fuels. We have no choice but to go carbon neutral and nuclear is not the option. We get free power from the sun. It is absolutely silly not to take advantage of it. Those fossil fuels we love? They were originally plants that grew from the sun or animals that ate plants that grew from the sun. Everything on Earth exists because of the vast power of the sun.

Comment Re:Reduced revenues != lost profit (Score 4, Interesting) 280

Well, they're kind of in a losing position - raise rates to pay for losses, and people just move to renewables sooner.

It seems pretty clear that generating electricity from free sunlight is going to be cheaper than mining and transporting fossil fuels to a complex facility to burn them. Solar has it's own "moore's law" equivalent that says the price of the panels goes down by 50% every time we double installed capacity. We're currently only powering less than 1% of the world from solar, so there is a lot more room for doubling. You can find a study that goes either way, but supposedly solar is already at parity with coal power in certain regions, and fossil fuels only get more expensive, not less.

Regulated or not, if you're selling the horse and buggy and someone else is selling the automobile, your industry will die.

Comment Re:Cost nothing to run? (Score 1) 488

Are the blades carbon fiber yet? I just visited the Boeing 787 manufacturing plant today and that thing has carbon fiber wings and a carbon fiber body. They had several display sections and it seemed really, really sturdy.

It's the kind of thing that is mostly expensive due to labor, which means volume and automation could do a lot to make it cheaper.

Comment Re:Not only graphics (Score 1) 568

You also need a PC with keyboard and mouse for precise controls. That's something consoles don't offer. There is no way you can use console to shoot me as fast as I can shoot you with a mouse. As soon as I see you, you are dead.

I hate using a keyboard and mouse. Its the only thing that has prevented me from every really picking up PC gaming. I know people who get used to it claim better accuracy (and tests seem to back that up), but as someone else here mentioned, if everyone is on a controller, its still even. And I love the Xbox 360 controller.

Comment Re:What the hell? (Score 1) 299

Stop feeding the trolls.

But he's not a troll, he was spot on and still modded down. I was pointing that out.

Unless you meant Slashdot is the troll, in which case, we're all feeding it.

Or if are *you* the troll, and you're pulling a Matrix like "don't worry about the vase" trick on me, because you knew I'd feed you for saying that...

Oh god, you're the oracle! And worse, I'm Keanu Reeves!

Comment Re:What the hell? (Score 5, Insightful) 299

You have a negative one score, but there is nothing wrong with what you said. This summary is complete crap. Slashdot chose to publish it. So Slashdot is publishing crap. This happens often. It is then not unreasonable to say the site has stagnated. I sure am sick of all this bottom of the barrel content myself.

The submitted did not read the article, or was an idiot. The approver(s?) did not read the article or are idiots. Everyone involved in posts like this are doing a bad job or are an idiot. Why does slashdot keep doing this? I see extremely poorly written content all the time here. Its just dumb.

*ALSO*, most blogs nowadays read their own comments and post updates like "many people in the comments have pointed out...". I don't think I have ever seen this happen on Slashdot, or if I have, it does not happen often enough. You'll see times where 80% of the comments are rightfully pointing out that the story is BS, but it still does not get updated. Posting bad content and then not fixing it when it is clearly shown to be BS just shows that the people running the site do not care about the quality of the content, or at the least are very bad at showing it. You just see false stories hang out on the front page all day long. Its ridiculous.

Shape up slashdot!

Comment Re:Do no evil (directly) (Score 1) 299

You flag the app, and Google will remove the apps from the android market. Why are Google to blame here?

iOS has violations too.

Ok, that's one iOS example down, 177,499 to go to equal Android ( at 71% of the 250,000 current iPhone apps).

I retract my previous post. I didn't RTFA, and didn't realize the Summary was misleading.

Sorry, Androids, I apologize. I guess we're ALL in the license-violation-boat together...

Honestly I'm a little surprised it wasn't obvious. Why would android be any different than other software? The android fanboy in me immediately noticed that it was probably unnecessary to single out that one OS. The article is now dead, but from what you say it sounds like I had the right idea.

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This is clearly another case of too many mad scientists, and not enough hunchbacks.