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Comment It reminds me of GPS or radio telescope signals... (Score 3, Interesting) 73

I *gasp* read the actual document ( and it sounds like some pretty complicated work. It relies on a bunch of separate microphones to listen in an absolutely silent room for the exact same noise and the echos of bounces. Since you know where the microphones are in relation to each other you can compute when the initial sound and echos hits each microphone and from there reverse construct where the sound must have originated and the echos tell you what it bounces of off.

The math is a bit beyond me after being out of university for so long, but it seem similar to transliteration using in GPS where thanks to very fast sensor readings you can figure out where you are in relation to a fixed signal. To compute the shape in the in a noisy environment I wonder if you can use a "known" sound where you could listen for only that and filter out the regular noise. Either way the computation involved would be impressive but maybe not for the elusive "5 years time" computer.

It would be cool to have something like this in my fishing boat where instead of a dot on the screen I could get something that tells me where the fish are and what kind too. :-)

Maybe you could arrange them in a golumb ruler layout to further speed up processing... *sigh* Making websites pays well, but I miss computers science.

Comment Free Complexity at the cost of speed (Score 1) 199

It's still at the prototype making level though. 3D printing gives you free complexity, but it's very slow. You can lay down layers of plastic, melt or glue powder together, or cure resin into the shape you want. The benefits are there's very little waste material compared to normal manufacturing. The cost is generally in time. I can print a part that uses $2.00 of plastic but that much plastic will take an hour to become something.

Still once you have a 3d printer, you build a few more and the economies of scale become more or less how many 3d printers can you operate?

It's still not mass producing - it's custom desktop fabrication. It's like laser printing in the 80s... very slow but nice quality. So in the near future it's still mostly for prototyping or small scale runs. Once your design is perfected you would still use that to create your master mold and mass produce the regular way.

The open source aspects mean that the entire field is advancing steadily forward. Open Source isn't really breaking new ground in technology, but it is making everything easier to build and cheaper if you've got the time to build it. Just like open source software.

Comment Brilliant and useful (Score 2) 72

I spent the last half hour or so using the demo provided. It's a bit disorienting at first, but after a few minutes it's very useful at keeping you focused on what you're working on. There is no delay or loss of focus going between editing and the rendered page. I let my kids try it and they suddenly understood quite a few things about nesting and wrapping text with tags that they've been struggling with after just a few minutes of watching their text change as it was rendered. It also worked with CSS so they could see how the same HTML looked totally different with some tweaks to the CSS page.

The demo doesn't let you save anything, but it's still fun to play with. Can't wait until this comes to main stream. All that searching and re-orienting with side by side windows seems so archaic by comparison now. It's like moving to scripting languages where suddenly you're working with live code instead of a compile cycle.

I look forward to this being integrated into browsers or other editors in the future. Keep up the good work guys.

Comment First published in 2009? (Score 1) 91

This guy didn't nearly the amount of press but here's the article from 2009. I've seen on print chocolate at a convention / maker faire before too but I don't know who owned it.

It would be interesting if they really did reinvent the wheel instead of copying everything that already exists though. Hopefully they will publish their plans.

Comment Re:So.... the change is.... (Score 4, Interesting) 153

Perhaps one change will be that PostgreSQL will no longer be moving forward so fast in the realm of free and open source high availability databases. Skype uses PostgreSQL for it's backend and has created SkyTools for managing replication and failover for a large numbers of servers. It's the biggest user I'm aware of, but I don't follow sql development that closely.

Maybe like hotmail running linux they will try to port it over to Azure or something. They could learn a lot.

More likely this gives the automatic ties to a global communication network that already has ties to the telecommunication systems. Windows Phones use skype instead of sms. Audio and video calls and conferencing at the cost of bandwidth. Huge installed user base on desktop, PC, iPhone and Android.

Like a game of go they just did a really neat move that opens up a lot of new possibilities for the future.

Comment Re:Ah, nice. (Score 2, Informative) 75

Honestly. Do you really believe what you just wrote?

People are people. As soon as you start saying every kind of person with a certain job or nationality is something you stop thinking and start dehumanizing.

Are all stoners whiney spoiled and lazy semi-libertarians who like to talk about their ultimate personal rights but only the part that would let them smoke weed all day, not the part that prevents highways, selling yourself into slavery and common land from existing or people polluting and dumping toxic waste in their backyard? I don't know. The vocal ones seem to be that way but I know some people just have a joint and lead normal lives. A few do it because cancer sucks.

You seem like the ignorant All-Or-Nothing type fighting against "The Man" by wearing a dent in the couch.

Could be wrong about you, just a guess. People are just people. You don't present yourself well in this comment and I haven't bother to look up any others.

Think for real before you type.

Comment Re:Ah, nice. (Score 1) 75

The animals may have been fed, but that's not really treating them well. Training bears that people are good sources of food is dangerous. Eventually they will seek out camp sites, homes or businesses and hurt someone or get killed themselves. Once they start depending on humans for food it's a slow form of starvation and when food gets scarce the bears get violent. They won't get enough to survive the winter.

No one got hurt, but bears can always be dangerous.

Some cops are assholes but in general they are good guys. People don't like them because they enforce the rules we ask them to and you usually only see them when you break the rules.

Comment Re:What the article doesn't mention.... (Score 1) 192

> One thing glaringly missing from the article is the cost of the battery pack. On the open market right now, 56kWh of LiFePO4 cells runs a bit over US$120,000.

I know most of the lithium batteries I have at home don't run nearly as long after a year or so. When they say it would take 60 charges are they assuming it's always going back to full power? They also seem to die really fast too, instead of a gradual amount of power loss compared to some other battery chemistries.

Would you (or anyone else) happen to know how many charges such a battery pack is capable of?

Comment Re:DRM, restrictions, outcry (Score 1) 610

On a more technical level - radios implemented in silicon are really inefficient - even to this day. Its something a lot of really smart people are working really hard to fix, and even if they do solve the problem they can never get above 50% efficiency (ie - 2 watts in for 1 watt out) with even the best semi-conductors.

Interesting. I don't know anything about radio communications at all from a technical standpoint, but I'm very interested. I work with lots of EE's. Can you describe this in more detail or give me some keywords so I can learn more about radio efficiency?


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