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Comment Leeches are already back. (Score 1) 180

When will Trump bring back leeching?

They're already back. They're used in limb reattachment surgery post-operative treatment.

When limbs are reattached the arteries work well right away but the veins not so much. So they have poor circulation and inadequate oxygenation, especially at the finger and toe tips. This can lead to further cell death, infection, and transplant failure.

Leeches applied to the extremities of the limbs can pull out enough blood and bring in fresh to keep more cells alive and bring more infection-fighting white cells to the area. And leeches do little damage other than draining blood, and provide their own surgical tools and anaesthetic. (It's in their evolutionary interest to not bother the victim into pulling them off while they're feeding, and not leaving wounds that would make him tend to avoid the location later.) So raised-sterile leeches are used, with substantial improvement in reattachment success rates.

Comment Re:Storage? (Score 1) 180

To pick up where renewables leave off, you want natural gas (or even petroleum) turbines that can quickly be brought on and off line.

Also: If you really are concerned about carbon dioxide, they produce a lot less of it per unit of energy.

In fossil fuels most of the energy comes from burning the hydrogen to water. Burning the carbon to carbon dioxide provides some, but it's mostly useful for packaging the hydrogen. Oil and gas is essentially long-chain-of-carbon molecules with two hydrogens per carbon and two more to cap the ends of the chain (with occasional tree-structures with the same carbon/hydrogen counts, and the odd ring-shaped or multiply-bonded impurity that''s short one or two pairs of hydrogens.)

So oil is a little over two hydrogens per carbon, gas goes from about 2.5 (butane) to 4 (methane). But coal is essentially just carbon. So gas is best, liquid oil fractions are not as good (though convenient for mobile engines), and coal is worst, on the energy/CO2 production ratio.

Comment If coal is dead, killing its bueaucracy won't hurt (Score 1) 180

Coal is dead. ... trying to resurrect something ... dying [from] market forces ... is [perjorative].

This isn't about trying to resuscitate the coal industry (though if it lets it run a little longer and die more smoothly - rather than being suddenly assassinated in a fit of political vitrual-signaling - it will let the miners and their offspring migrate to other jobs, rather than to government assistance.)

It's about killing off the massive, expensive, and intrusive regulatory infrastructure that no longer serves any purpose.
If Big Coal IS being killed by market forces, the government needn't bother killing it off.

It also gives Trump the opportunity to keep a promise to some of his voting base, make political appearances claiming credit for it, and engage in some virtual-signaling of his own (conservative style).

Remember: He didn't promise to bring their jobs back (though if some of the jobs do come back, or existing ones not be ended as soon, it is a bonus). He promised to dismantle the regulations that had already killed jobs - and give a dose of job-killing medicine to the regulators.

I suspect schadenfreud will please his coal-state voters, and the prospect of voter revolts and sweeping reforms may make at least a few future regulators think twice before stomping jackbooted on the faces of those they regulate.

Comment I wonder how much is really malware? (Score 1) 100

I wonder how much of this stuff is really leftover Adobe metadata and how much is components of malware?

With 20% to 40% of the code/data space of major applications composed of "along for the ride" data that's never interpreted, there's a LOT of room for malware to park itself, its redundant copies, its resources, and its purloined data without having to actually create files of its own.

Comment Size is still important (Score 2) 100

I used to [use a tool to de-bloat images] This was important since much of the world was still on dial-up back then.

It is still important.
  - Some of the world is STILL on dial-up. Even in the US. (especially the rural part: At my vacation/retirement ranch I had only 28kbps until AT&T upgraded the cell tower to LTE last year).
  - Some of the "high-speed internet" isn't very - like DSL at 1.5 or 6 Mbps, or WISPs serving an entire town with what amounts to a WiFi hotspot.
  - Some services charge by the bandwidth used.
  - Some services throttle back "heavy users"
  - Some services sell tiered usage, with higher prices for larger monthly data caps, and killing the link (e.g. prepaid), drastically throttling down (e.g. 4G dropping to 3G speed), and/or charging punitive "overage" rates for bandwidth beyond the pre-purchased tier.
  - As the users get farther away, latency and setup-turnaround for the components of a web page display also slow the process.

Web developers tend to work with disks and servers built into their machine or attached by a fast LAN. So it's easy to miss that the actual users' experience may be slower - even drastically so. (Thus was the web, at the dawn of image-laden web pages, nicknamed the "World Wide Wait".) And they're not charged for that bandwidth, so they also don't get their noses rubbed in the price of it when they receive their monthly bills or hit their monthly caps.

So keeping a web page's bandwidth use small is still useful:
  - Even on broadband it makes it quicker - "snappier" - which improves the user experience.
  - It can reach a wider audience, as those on slower or more latent links don't give up in disgust.
  - It saves some users substantial money.

Comment Re:They already made money (Score 1) 154

If the government did it, they would be putting the finishing touches on their plan to roll ISDN

Like they did in Chattanooga, TN, Longmont, CO, and tens of other cities across the US? Oh wait, you said ISDN, not Gigabit fibre.

I'm not a big government fan, but when it comes to services that have reached utility level (aka everyone needs them to function in society, like water, electricity, and now internet access) the profit driven "free market" approach only seems to create monopolies that drive up prices and lower the quality of service.

Sigh. Again, this isn't a free market. Remember "billions in subsidies"?

The other issue is that this isn't like water and electricity. The same standards of delivery for those services was the same 100 years ago. Broadband has changed dramatically in the last 5 years. There is simply no comparison.

I have no problem at all with municipal broadband competing in a market on a level playing field (meaning they also have to provide service to places that might not be lucrative), which is mostly what you see in Chattanooga. But it can't be an either/or.

Comment Re:It's true (Score 2) 207

Pixar was unique in Silicon Valley companies in that we had deadlines that could not move. The film had to be in theaters before Christmas, etc. I'd see employees families come to Pixar to have dinner with them. I took the technical director training but decided to stay in studio tools, first because Pixar needed better software more than they needed another TD, and second because of the crazy hours.

Comment Re:They already made money (Score 2) 154

they got billions (with a 'b') in subsidies while _also_ being allowed to charge extra fees to bring fiber to those poor neighborhoods. ... Why the hell Americans are so obsessed with the "free" market...

And, yet again, we have cronyism being confused with a free market.

Hint: If they got billions in subsidies, it's not a free market.

Hint 2: If the government did it, they would be putting the finishing touches on their plan to roll ISDN out to those neighborhoods over the next 5 years.

It's difficult to find the winning path.

Comment Re: Correcting myself (Score 2) 607

I am pretty sure that "we don't want shopping malls to fall on our heads" count as a strong government and public interest.

Yes, I agree, but we're not talking about people misrepresenting their qualifications designing buildings, we're talking about people saying they're qualified to discuss timings for amber lights.

Restricting phrases like "I am an engineer" in the context of someone making final technical decisions concerning building design arguably makes sense, but it's no longer "narrow conditions" when you restrict such a vague, ambiguous, phrase under all circumstances.

I say arguably because if the conversation is something like:

Isaac: I say old bean, you're putting the wrong tensile cable on that suspension bridge of yours. Here, use this rope, should be strong enough
Isambard: Who the fuck are you? What is this crap?
Isaac: You can trust me. I'm an engineer!
Isambard: Oh OK. Hold a moment. There. Oh fuck, the bridge collapsed! I thought you said you're an engineer!
Isaac: I am. An IEEE certified software engineer! I know PHP! Whoopwhoop!

...then that law is obviously a waste of time anyway.

Comment Re:It would be... (Score 1) 231

Intentionally blocking the way is obstructing traffic. Going slowly on a local road in the rightmost lane is not.

If you have the ability to stop any place and get out of the way, as cyclists do, then yes, yes it is. It absolutely is obstructing the natural flow of traffic needlessly.

Farming equipment is allowed on any such road and that stuff usually travels at roughly similar speeds as bicycles.

Farming equipment is not allowed to disrupt the normal flow of traffic either. And they design the roads accordingly. They put massive shoulders on roads with any significant traffic which must also carry farm traffic, to enable it to get out of the way. Roads with less traffic simply get dashed lines (assuming they're not one-lane roads, like the one I live on) so that you can pass tractors, so that they don't disrupt traffic flow either.

This really is not complicated. We have laws against disrupting the flow of traffic because disrupting the flow of traffic causes every kind of problem. It reduces throughput while increasing the risk of collision. And that's why cyclists who can't find the side of the road do. They want to cry about debris at the roadside, but guess what? I don't get to drive into someone else's lane to dodge debris in my lane. Buy appropriate tires and tubes, and run slime, like an adult.

There are not so many roads with actual minimum speed limit posted and only highways specifically restrict bicycles and farming equipment from them.

A posted minimum speed limit is not necessary to disrupt the normal flow of traffic, and be cited on that basis, so that's irrelevant, like most of your reasoning. And it doesn't matter where you are, you're not allowed to hold up traffic. And there are numerous places where you can ride a bicycle on a highway, it's freeways you're not allowed to ride on.

You are literally wrong about everything you said in your comment.

Comment Re:And this is one reason why ... (Score 1) 262

Well, we can fly expensive pieces of sensitive equipment to Mars and deposit them in an orbit (usually) on the surface (sometimes) in working order.

I knew you were a moron when I saw you talking about flying to Mars. Flying is done in an atmosphere.

Yet we can's stick a probe into something that's just a few thousand kilometers away.

Fuck, you don't even have the level of education you can get from watching Futurama , do you?

Comment Re:And this is one reason why ... (Score 1) 262

We can fly to Mars, but we can't install planet-sized plumbing?

You're trolling, right? Nobody is even proposing to fly to Mars any time soon. You aim yourself at mars and you coast for a long-ass time. Maybe by the time we have the tech to accelerate at 1G halfway to Mars and decelerate at 1G the other half the way to Mars, we'll have the tech to run a fiberoptic link through the mantle. But... probably not.

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