Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?
DEAL: For $25 - Add A Second Phone Number To Your Smartphone for life! Use promo code SLASHDOT25. Also, Slashdot's Facebook page has a chat bot now. Message it for stories and more. Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 Internet speed test! ×

Comment Re:Well no (Score 1) 709

If you care about man-made chemicals in your food I would avoid meat altogether:

Even stuff that was never intended to end up even in trace amounts in the food chain ends up in it. And the higher you position yourself in the food chain, the higher the quantities of nasty chemicals that keep piling up inside your body.

Comment Re:Picture, some more info (Score 1) 242

Very well, but in the end, there is still the disadvantage of being a dirty source of energy. Better than fossil (CO2 isn't a joke), but worse than renewable.

In the ideal world, nuclear is a clean solution, but in reality, waste somehow ends up being dumped by the Italian mafia:'Ndrangheta

Now how can such a thing happen? Even though governments have very strict regulations, in the end, the safety inspector is easily bribed.

Nuclear power also originated from research done by the military because of its interest in making bombs. No nuclear power, no excuse for a country to buy uranium.

Even though there are strict inspection schemes, a Belgian company still managed to export uranium to Iran:

Also, there are Belgian companies which make equipment that can be used for making bombs. (uranium still needs to be purified) Iran, disguised as a German company, managed to get a Belgian company to export such equipment by boat to Italy (they said they wanted some pre-processing done there). then, when in the mediterrean sea, they managed to make the boat go to Turkey instead. In Turkey, a truck took the equipment to Iran. I saw this in a locally broadcasted documentary and I wish I could find a link but I can't.

Comment Re:Picture, some more info (Score 1) 242

Damn right nuclear is scary, I just shit my pants!

With 20 billion for 60 years, nuclear is also quite cheap, but don't forget that after those 60 years, the plant still has to be disassembled, keeping costs going. Eventually, difference isn't so big. Maybe even equal if you calculate the small risk of a nuclear disaster (Chernobyl disaster is estimated at costing 436 billion dollars for just Ukraine (235 billion) and Belarus (201 billion) combined) and smaller accidents.

Also, don't forget that renewable energy has a more "distributed" character, making it possible for small companies to operate on the energy market, pushing prices down MUCH further than when you have one company producing over 50% of all electricity in the country (as is the case with Electrabel owning both Belgian nuclear plants).

Comment Re:Picture, some more info (Score 1) 242

Storage will be needed when we eventually shift completely towards renewable sources, but in the meantime, there are natural gas plants in Belgium which could fill the gap in case there is no wind for a short while (low air pressure). (High air pressure means there won't be a lot of wind for a much longer while, but will increase chances of sunshine, so this is covered) There is a natural gas plant, built in the nineties, which was recently shut down by the owner to push prices up. What if this gas plant (at least 300MW) would only run when there's a lack of power? How about shutting down natural gas plants which are currently running 24/7 when there is lots of wind and starting it when there is a lack? (Natural gas plants can be started up very quickly) This would be a faster, cheaper, yet more gradual approach in a country which lacks behind dramatically when it comes to renewable power (28,1% of produced power still comes from natural gas).

Yes, I've heard about energy prices below zero on the news (happened in Belgium as well a couple of weeks ago because of the warm weather).

But I wonder, how can this happen? Producer paying somebody to consume electricity? Why not just shut production down? How does the transport infrastructure company get its share? Does it also have to pay?

Comment Re:Sounds like a good plan (Score 1) 242

Maybe one day energy storage will be cheap enough to be used on a large scale (and I think it would be the way to go), but this day, I think it really isn't a good idea. I'm still happy they're doing it in an environment-friendly way: using mechanical power (pumping sea water) rather than chemical (I hate batteries!). Also, not very relevant, but in Germany, on average, there also happens to be a little more sunshine than in cloudy grey Belgium.

Comment Re:Sounds like a good plan (Score 1) 242

In Germany, there's tons of excess energy even when the sun isn't shining and when there is no wind. What I'm saying is, it isn't always the best option to produce your own energy when one of your neighbor countries is exporting it dirt cheap. Nothing wrong with importing. I'm also saying that the money should be better spent into production rather than storage. Maybe storage was more efficient if there would a lack of "renewables", but this isn't the case, so cost is higher. 800 million euros for ONLY 300 megawatt is ridiculous. In those few cases when there is NO wind AND NO light from the sun, you could have some natural gas plants which only run when there's a lack of energy. Natural gas plants can serve this purpose very well because they can be started up within a few minutes. There already are a few natural gas plants in Belgium which could serve this purpose.

Comment Re:Sounds like a good plan (Score 1, Interesting) 242

Better import from Germany! They export energy at the lowest price. Even after shutting down their nuclear plants, they still have too much energy. That's because they have lots of solar power and wind turbines. On land. Maybe offshore has higher efficiency once it's built, but construction costs are so incredibly high eventual electricity price is almost double of wind turbines on land, says Wikipedia: So Germany exports power for next to nothing. But wait, Germany is the only country Belgium doesn't import power from! How fucking stupid is that? Actually very smart, considering a corrupt government. Belgium lacks behind other European countries dramatically when it comes to renewable power. Government tells people renewable energy is expensive. Meanwhile they keep not importing German power and building expensive offshore wind turbines! As if they want renewable energy to be expensive.

Comment Re:Picture, some more info (Score 2, Insightful) 242

In the daytime, there is a lack of energy in Belgium and energy needs to be imported from neighbor countries. Most of the energy in Belgium is used for (fully automated) industrial processes. Wouldn't it be more cost effective to just make certain industries only run at night, when there is too much energy? This could be made an attractive option if nighttime energy prices are low enough. Also, 800 million euros is fucking insane! I estimate (too lazy to check facts and cite sources) investing that money in extra wind turbines instead of energy storage would produce an extra 1 gigawatt during the daytime. There would still be massive excess of energy at night, but hey, the government could use that to generate good ol' bitcoins! Government budget was never solved more quickly!

Comment Re:Reefer Madness Continues (Score 0) 358

There are a couple of things to learn from this stoner-statement. You make it sound like pot being less harmful than alcohol is a good reason to make it legal. This is wrong. It simply makes it being illegal more ridiculous. Even if it were worse than heroin, that would be even more of a reason to make it legal. The only way to stop somebody from doing dangerous drugs (not weed) is to explain the risks in an honest way. Consider the following: Heroin is illegal. However, it is not that hard to get it. I can easily obtain heroin. I've heard heroin feels really really really really good. I have considered using heroin at some point. However, I did some research about heroin first. Turns out every heroin addict I've spoken to told me to stay away from it! I haven't done heroin yet and I'm not really considering doing it any longer. Properly informed people really are smart enough to make the decision of consuming or not consuming heroin for themselves. Pro-war-on-drugs people will argue that people will still be using drugs once you make it legal. That is correct, but the damage done by the criminality that surrounds it at this point is simply much worse. For instance, more people die from using meth- or 4-MPA-contaminated ecstacy pills than actual MDMA victims. Most heroin users die from overdose (not knowing the percentage of heroin in the powder they purchaised). If the government controls the supply of drugs (not private lobyist corporations like with McDonnalds/tobacco/alcohol/weapons who try to get young people hooked on dirt/sigarettes/breezers/guns) it can save so much effort. And education is key. Education is NOT telling kids that a single dose of MDMA can cause Parkinson disease or that 1 joint equals 20 sigarettes. This causes people to lose faith in the government, potentially making them think that it's all lies and that drugs are harmless.

Comment Re:technology node (Score 0) 163

YES, if ARM at 40nm is just as efficient as x86 at 32nm, then ARM is probably the better one. Also, Intel had the $$$ to optimize their implementation and the very best they can come up with is LESS GOOD than cheap a ARM processor? Now imagine the same amount of research money being used to further improve on ARM. Maybe the results won't be to impressive since ARM is efficient BY DESIGN (like Linux). No need for dirty hacks that introduce BUGS. Still, a 32nm ARM chip will blow Intel away.

Comment Re:Few things (Score -1, Troll) 260

What's wrong with everybody these days? Fucking morons. SlashDot is turning into MTV Cribs! Why go through all that trouble of making 6 very interesting points if you could've just written the following: I have money, I am able to give my kid an iPad and he already owns an iPhone, now what I'm sayin yaw? I'm a good parent, I want my kid to be playing around with educational software so he can become smart like me. I like the look size weight whatever I KNOW whats best for MY kid. Why buy cheaper or buy NOTHING and give some money to the poor?! Loser! I can WIN buying a useless crap electronic device built by people in inhuman conditions for next to nothing, never really learn my kid anything and that will be thrown away in 3 years, polluting the environment. I don't care I'm not rich but I'm still richer than most people so I will keep serving the super rich. I also like to watch television, it confirms that I'm doing the right thing :)

Slashdot Top Deals

"Even if you're on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there." -- Will Rogers