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Comment Re:To be clear for those not familiar with concept (Score 1) 356

Where did anybody in this thread say that the entire fusion generation infrastructure was free, cheap or even moderately priced?

All anybody said was the cost of the frigging LITHIUM was insignificant. Then you come in and ask for people to back that up with numbers, because after all, it can't actually cost zero. Well, it's been spelled out for you: A year's worth of a typical household's electricity involves a few cents of lithium.

Now you change the subject and point out that whole fusion generation infrastructure could still be expensive, just like overpriced fission plants. Well, no shit.

But don't sit there with smug superiority, because that's not the silly question you asked in the first place. You asked *specifically* about the cost of the input material.

Comment Re:Doesn't work that way (Score 4, Insightful) 79

To put it another way, this whole line reminds me of the same thing with charity. You have a person with money who supports a charitable cause, and they give a lot of money to it, and someone responds, "..but you still have possessions X, Y, and Z! if you really supported the charity you'd donate more!". But it's a line of attack that the person donating to charity can never win: no matter how much they give, they can still be attacked for owning things, unless they donate to the point that they're homeless in the streets scrounging for food from trash cans.

If the argument was that Al Gore had a particularly high level of environmental impact relative to his wealth and other factors worthy of consideration (his job, where he lives, etc), then that would absolutely be grounds for charges of hypocrisy. But otherwise what you're really complaining about is wealth inequality, and doing the unwinnable argument, "If Person X really cared about Issue Y, then they'd give even more than they currently do!" - regardless of what that level of giving is.

Comment Re:Half assed... (Score 4, Insightful) 79

I think you're confused. They're not buying "carbon credits". They're literally putting money into the manufacture of wind turbines. More wind turbines will exist because of this. 285MW nameplate more. Wherein does the problem lie?

What's the point of them buying stakes on renewable energy companies if in the end their data centers and factories are still using unregulated coal power, usually in cities that desperately need to move away from those?

And what do you think that the additional produced turbines will do - lie around on a factory floor? They'll be installed and generating power on the grid. Who cares where?

And more to the point, you don't just get power from a single power plant. You're connected to a grid which moves power among numerous plants. In particular, on the Chinese grid there's a number of HVDC and HVAC lines that bring power from the sparsely populated interior (wind, hydro, etc) to the densely populated coast. Directly reducing the need for power generation infrastructure on the coast, even though the wind / hydro / etc hardware isn't located on the coast.

Comment Re: Your new president doesn't pay taxes (Score 5, Insightful) 79

And don't claim you didn't vote for Trump. The American ppl did.

Actually, the American people voted for Hillary. 65,4 million to 62,8 million.

If you disagree then you either don't believe in democracy

No, if you disagree, then you support facts. And, for that matter, if you support democracy (aka, the person who gets the most votes wins). The US is, however, not a democracy - at least when it comes to electing the president. Which is why Trump will be president.

Comment Re:Doesn't work that way (Score 1) 79

Are you under the impression that environmentalists think that everyone should stop flying, driving, heating and cooling their homes, etc? Yes, you may find some radicals that believe things like that, but that is not a mainstream position. The mainstream positions are that consumption efficiencies need to be improved and production impacts need to be reduced.

Now, if your argument is that you think that it's unfair that there's such an economic wealth disparity that some people like Al Gore own private planes while many Americans can't afford a car, that so much of the world's production (and thus environmental impact) goes toward servicing the wealthy and so little toward the poor and middle class, and you think that government officials need to be voting for policies to minimize wealth inequality rather than huge tax breaks for the wealthy that give them an even larger share of the total environmental impact on the planet, then I have only one thing to say to that: "Welcome to the Democratic Party!"

But if you're of the impression that the concept of environmentalism is the same thing as reducing income inequality (and thus consumption inequality), you're sadly mistaken. Mainstream environmentalism is built around across the board improvements - things that effect everyone, not just specific groups.

Comment Re:Depends on price (Score 1) 337

Yes, that's conceivable. But in reality, we probably visit the cinema 2-3 times per year, while this year we have probably bought 100+ hours of entertainment on discs and watched 100+ more using online streaming services, including numerous movies in each case.

The studios might like to think that the alternative to us waiting for their movies to arrive on those discs and streaming services would be to pay for cinema tickets for everyone, but their unrealistic assumptions aren't my problem. If they set similarly unrealistic prices for early access, equating it with going to a cinema rather than getting what we would have got anyway just a bit earlier, then that won't be my problem either.

Ultimately, I'm happy to pay a reasonable price and support TV shows and movies I enjoy, and I've reached a stage in my life where disposable income on that level isn't a problem and I have more I could spend on this kind of thing if I thought it was worth it. But equally, there's way more stuff out there than I'm ever going to have time to watch and there are plenty of other ways I enjoy spending my leisure time that I'll just do more of if it becomes too inconvenient or expensive to watch some things, so it's up to the studios and distributors to make an attractive offer if they want my money.

Comment Re:Not Infinite but Still Useful (Score 1) 356

Not all renewable resources require large area. Solar Space Power Satellites, e.g., don't require a lot of area, and have a potential smooth path of development (via powering other vehicles in space, e.g. allowing ion rockets to go beyond Jupiter without using on board fission power).

OTOH, SPSS aren't all that flexible, and if you use tightly focusable E.M. to deliver the power they have the potential to be dangerous. (Delivery to Earth by microwave looks pretty good, but it would louse up a part of the radio spectrum that can easily get through rain. And power transmission via laser is going to either be very low power or very dangerous.)

IOW, every single form of energy generation/delivery has it's drawbacks. Solar and wind can't be started up whenever you need them, e.g., necessitating lots of network ballast and storage.

Comment Re:Should have a Deep Impact.... (Score 2) 356

That's an overbroad statement, but it's true that this is being well oversold as a "clean energy source". But if it can be made to work properly there are several environments where it would be the best choice. The questions are things like "How much maintenance would it require?", "How self-contained can it be made?", "How small/light/cheap can it be made?" Etc.

This should produce a lot less waste than a fission reactor (though there are interesting claims being made about the molten salt reactors) and after full development might be the superior choice of power in places like Antarctica, the moon, Mars, interstellar ships, etc. The problem is getting from this early development model to a final model.

Comment Re:To be clear for those not familiar with concept (Score 1) 356

Do you mean thermal efficiency? I pegged it at somewhat less than 50%, like most power plants:

$ units
You have: 1g / (7 g/mol / avogadro ) * 17.5 MeV
You want: kWh
        * 67003.703

Since a typical household electricity use is about 9000 kWh/year, at 35% efficiency, that would be several years worth.

If you mean transmutation efficiency, it doesn't matter. You keep recycling the lithium until it converts. As I pointed out, the overall cost of that process could be high, but the cost of the raw lithium is insignificant.

Comment Re:Microsoft is killing the business use of Window (Score 1) 153

They're just trying to keep up with Google. More than once, I've given a sales person a locally installed demonstrator for some web app that was working when they left the office, and then the demo was undermined when they connected their laptop to the Internet while out of the office and Chrome self-updated and broke something.

Comment Re:To be clear for those not familiar with concept (Score 1) 356

By my calculation, the ~1g of lithium in a common phone, if converted to tritium, could generate enough electricity to power a typical household for several years. So the cost of the lithium itself is negligible.

The costs involved with gathering and handling the tritium would be a different story.

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