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Comment Re: Pretty sure I read this story last decade. (Score 1) 265

If you dig into this deeply enough, you'll see the utility very likely contributed a great deal of money to one or more elected officials responsible for approving such behavior.

Find who it is. Vote them out. Doesn't matter if there's a D or an R (or even an I) in front of their name. Vote the fuckers out. Corruption is what allows such things. Companies who deal in it are symptoms of the problem but not the problem itself. Blaming the company for gaming the system is like blaming bacteria for rapidly growing in a nutrient-rich solution. Find the corrupt bastard who's feeding the colony and cut them out of the situation. Every will self-correct afterwards.

Comment Re: Pretty sure I read this story last decade. (Score 1) 265

But that doesn't mean there aren't good reasons to stop polluting.

Please, find me someone who's desperately screaming "yes, I want polluted air, land, and water! I want to see wildlife drowning in crude oil! I want barren deserts instead of forests! I want the seas to rise and inundate the coasts! I want weather Armageddon!"

No reasonable person is opposing curbs on pollution. That is a strawman. Reasonable people ARE, however, opposing needless, pointless, EXPENSIVE curbs that do little or nothing to improve things but do much to line the pockets of "climate change" proponents like Al Gore and his "carbon credits" crowd.

Comment Re: Pretty sure I read this story last decade. (Score 2) 265

We need ALL NATIONS to drop their emissions TOGETHER.

And that's the humorous part. When it's the UN clamoring for the US to cut emissions, everybody's piling on the bandwagon saying it's a good idea, no a GREAT idea!

When they're asked to curb their own emissions, suddenly it's a really, really bad idea.

It's almost like it's not about climate change or emissions or anything real and only about taking the US economy down several pegs so other nations can take advantage of it.

Nah, that's just crazy talk.

Comment Re:Pretty sure I read this story last decade. (Score 2) 265

Never forget, in years where hurricane activity is low, we hear "weather isn't climate! It doesn't mean anything!" Yet in years with lots of hurricane activity "see? See? SEE? We told you global warming is real! This proves it!"

If it rains too little it's due to climate change. If it rains too much it's due to climate change. If it rains just right "we told you weather isn't climate! It means nothing!"

You can't have it both ways guys. Obviously doesn't stop you from trying though.

Comment Re: Having a 'bad gene'... (Score 1) 630

This. It's not that (or not only that, at least) more people are dying of cancer, or even of specific cancers in this day and age; it's a combination of things like 'instead of having ten people dying of 'consumption' or 'old age' we now break it out into specific cancers' and 'well, a hundred years ago, they usually died of something else, first.'

And yeah, until very recently, kids were 'shy' or 'withdrawn' and would have undesirable traits beaten out of them; metaphorically or literally.

Comment Re:What is the point of view? (Score 3, Informative) 630

Well, think of it this way.

A housing development has a rash (pun intended) of break-ins.

They get together and decide to institute mandatory installation of alarm systems.

The number of break-ins goes down in direct proportion to the number of houses have alarm systems installed, until all the houses have them installed, and the number of break-ins is almost, but not quite, zero per year.

After a while, people start to think 'we don't have a break-in problem, why are we mandating these alarm systems?'

New houses under construction start to be built without alarm systems. What do you suppose happens to the break-in rate?

The price of freedom (from preventable disease) is eternal vigilance (of vaccination rates.)

It's real easy to say 'we don't need vaccines' when you've never seen a playmate in polio braces, or when pictures of a wall full of children in iron lungs is a quaint historical anachronism. When you don't have an Uncle Bob who's sterile from a bout of mumps. When having a dead sibling is unusual, and probably the result of accident or something, and not 'measles.'

Comment Re:Help Me (Score 1) 290

I still have most of the Commodore 64 code that I ever wrote, even though the computers are sitting in my brother's attic 2,000 miles from here and the disks are long gone. As I've upgraded platforms I've pulled in my files from the previous platforms, and now we have emulators so I could even run the programs again if I wished. This obviously isn't going to help with things that had a hardware component like my card for interfacing a Commodore 64 with a 1571 disk drive at full 1571 speed (wire-wrapped, naturally, and using a ROM simulator SRAM chip to hold my code), but (shrug). The whole need for that is really not there anymore since a simulated 1541 is ridiculously faster than the real thing was.

Comment Re:phone (Score 1) 290

I would use an Arduino board with a Bluetooth adapter to do all the grunt work, and use the (Android) smartphone just for the user interface, talking to the Arduino via a Serial profile. We do something like that in ham radio nowadays to interface APRS with Android tablets, with the Android tablet providing GPS coordinates to be outputted as ham radio packets to the APRS system, and accepting GPS coordinates sent via packet radio from the ham-radio-interfaced Arduino to display the call signs of surrounding ham radio stations on the Android tablet's display . (Can't do it with iDevices because Apple won't open up access to the Serial profile).

Comment Re:Floppy drive (Score 1) 290

The capacitors are easy to replace. The chips are fat and happy NMOS that are somewhat static sensitive but otherwise pretty indestructible. The big problem with the chips is the 6526 CIA, which is the parallel port chip that is likely interfaced with the balancer machine. Those tend to pop if you stare at them wrong because the raw digital lines go directly from the CIA pins to that port on the back with no (zero) buffering, and it's been quite a while since they were manufactured. I used to pop them all the time when interfacing my wire-wrapped gadgets to my Commodore 64 and our local Commodore repair center knew me by name and when I came in the door immediately went in the back and got a 6526 out of his tubes of spares to sell to me. That was, of course, thirty years ago. Today they can still be found on eBay as pulls from recycled machines, but with the normal caveats of buying recycled components from eBay -- i.e.,. most of the time the seller has no way of testing them, so what you get may or may not work.

Comment Re:dust (Score 1) 290

Err, no. The SID chip is on the motherboard of the Commodore 64 (the schematic is even in the technical manual -- want to see my copy?) and is mixed with the television signal out the RF port on the back, or is available as a pin on the 8-pin round audio-video connector on the back of the Commodore 64, from whence it can go into a 1702 monitor (via an 8-pin to 8-pin cable) or broken out and sent to a powered speaker (via an 8-pin to RCA breakout cable, which also allowed hooking to a normal composite monitor). The 1541 has nothing to do with sound.

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