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

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 internet speed test! No Flash necessary and runs on all devices. ×

Comment Re:It's about landmass (Score 1) 466

We used to use re-chargable vehicles all the time. They were called horses. After a certain distance, they needed quite a long time to re-fuel and rest.

The solution was to swap the discharged horses out for new ones. This would also work well for electric vehicles. If cars are very easy to rent, there's no need to own a specific one, so once it's flat, plug it in and pick another.

Car ownership is dropping in Europe as it becomes cheaper and more convenient to rent. Rent a big car for the family holiday, and then a small one for a day trip, and then a van for moving furniture. Much more convenient than having to use the same vehicle for everything. Getting a train 90% of the way and easily renting a car for the last 10 miles is a nicer journey than driving all the way. Now, an electric car is fine for ten miles, while it wouldn't have managed the whole journey.

It's not about making electric cars behave just like the petrol ones we are used to. It's about changing how we transport ourselves around.

Comment Re:The earth is (Score 1) 436

People believe in the common good. It's just a question of who has anything in common with them.

The whole reason humans form communities is the common good. It's easier to all build a well than each person build their own. It's easier to share a plow team than everyone have oxen they use one week a year.

As life has become safer, the need for common good has reduced. It's still a good way to reduce risks, but our risks are so low now, we tend not to worry about it.

Comment Re:No. (Score 3, Funny) 449

640x480?! That's just a bigger version of 320x280, and I started out with a lot less than 320x280, I can tell you. Bloody kids, next thing they'll be wanting more than 4 bits of colour information in each pixel.

As for VRML, I often use it as an example of why 'open standards' are far from a panacea. It's a truly dreadful standard, created in academia before there were either competing implementations of the problem, or even much of a problem, that actively held back VR and web 3d stuff generally for years. Also a useful example of "worse is better".

Comment Re:Can't wait to get one in my watch. (Score 2) 156

I have a watch from the 1940s that's still giving out plenty of radiation. Sadly, the phosphor is all used up so it doesn't glow at all.

Early glow in the dark paints used a mixture of radium and phosphor. The decay from the radium would excite the phosphor and make it glow. Unfortunately it also broke down the phosphor, so while radium lasts for centuries, the paint doesn't.

Comment Re:Renewables will never work (Score 1) 340

The small fraction in that case would be 23%, not 2/3. Because nuclear, while not a fossil fuel, isn't a renewable either, and that's what the op was talking about.

That said I actually think 23% is a pretty impressive - at least until you remember that electricty is only a smallish proportion of total energy use. I found this diagram helpful in showing the way things are:

http://www.iea.org/Sankey/#?c=...

Comment Re:Renewables will never work (Score 1) 340

and that is ALWAYS, if you spread them out wide enough.

Yes, but that is a very wide spread and therefore a very big if. The ideal energy mix would be nuclear for base load, and then wind/solar with hydro available to handle variability in the renewables. But that requires geography that's hydro friendly, which most of the world isn't. CCGT will do for now in handling variable load until some kind of battery grid becomes available.

Slashdot Top Deals

Anyone can hold the helm when the sea is calm. -- Publius Syrus

Working...