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Comment Re:Obligatoriness Extraordinaire (Score 1) 237

He, just like I, was probably confused by the fact that primordial elements are NOT the elements arising from primordial nucleosynthesis. Some people screwed up big time on terminology right there. I would never have thought of uranium as "primordial" if someone hadn't told me that geologists are...somewhat less demanding in their primordiality standards.

The word "Primordial" substantially predates the modern concepts of the big bang and "primordial necleosynthesis", so perhaps it is the physicists and not the geologists that have bastardized the meaning.

Comment Re:And I thought I was inefficient (Score 1) 327

Okay I found the bill really sucks to read. It showed the 10kWh under the total but later it also showed 290 kWh under the total which makes a lot more sense. Still seems like a very small amount.

Ok, man, as a "Chemical and Biological Engineering Student" you really should have done the math first... I'll forgive you as I doubt you sleep much ;-)

10 kWh/month wouldn't even power a dorm room mini-fridge...

Comment Re:yep (Score 5, Informative) 671

Most Silicon Valley startups offer healthcare.........if they don't, they are horrifically underfunded and you should avoid them.

It takes time to obtain funding. The article is talking about the people who take a risk and actually launch startups, and their health insurance during the time that they are pitching their ideas to investors to obtain the funding to offer insurance to new employees, not people like you, who only join after the funding is secured.

Comment Re:autopilot for cars so like all the cost of the (Score 1) 287

From the common person's perspective, a self-driving car should be no different than hiring a taxi. Get in and state the destination, then don't care about the details of how it gets there.

Except you don't own the taxi--the owner of the taxi pays the insurance and passes it along to you in the fare. What you are describing is more like Zipcar. But iIf you own the self-driving car you are responsible for the insurance as much as the owner of a taxi or Zipcar is. However you dice it, though, the person sitting in the back seat staring at his iPhone benefiting from the self-driving car is the one who will ultimately pay, either through insurance or the price of the vehicle or through registration fees if it comes to that.

I don't disagree with you that the common public won't accept it. I also don't yet believe that these are ready for the common public either.

Comment Re:autopilot for cars so like all the cost of the (Score 1) 287

I think the owner of such a car should end up paying for accidents through insurance costs, unless a driving algorithm was fundamentally flawed.

But overall, while I don't much like the idea of cars on autopilot, as I like to make eye contact with a driver before, say, crossing the street in a crosswalk, I nonetheless like them better than drunk drivers, of which there are plenty right now. Let's turn it around--maybe we need to think of it as having an autopilot ready to take over (or anyway loudly warn the driver) if its sensors pick up the driver doing something stupid. Let's look for beneficial uses of the sensor array necessary for these cars to navigate...

Comment Re:It's an alkyne. (Score 1) 82

Sadly, I don't remember enough organic chemistry to know what the double/double would be called.

Here's an article on cumulenes, but I don't know what a the proper name of a long chain of it would be.

The proper name is cumulene. In fact, that's pretty clear from the first line of the Wikipedia article you tried to link:

A cumulene is a hydrocarbon with three or more cumulative (consecutive) double bonds.

Emphasis mine.

One of those days... :)

Comment Re:Whats the efficiency? (Score 1) 181

From the Abstract:
"Power densities reached >0.5 W m2 in unoptimized devices, operating with a 130 C hot side. "

So apparently it generates 50 watts per square meter on a temperature drop of about 100 degrees (assuming the cold side is room temperature or about 25-30C).

I gather that 50 is indeed >0.5, but I'm not sure how you go from ">0.5 W M^-2" in the abstract to 50 watts per square meter. It's half a watt per square meter, which is pretty poor.

Comment Re:99% - 47% = 51% ?! (Score 3, Informative) 526

If you're talking about Romney's "47%" comment, he didn't say that 47% didn't pay income tax. He said the "47%" got back more from the goverment than they paid. Significant difference.

An excerpt from an actual transcript (emphasis mine):

Romney: There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe that government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you name it. That that's an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what. And I mean, the president starts off with 48, 49, 48—he starts off with a huge number. These are people who pay no income tax. Forty-seven percent of Americans pay no income tax. So our message of low taxes doesn't connect. And he'll be out there talking about tax cuts for the rich. I mean that's what they sell every four years. And so my job is not to worry about those people—I'll never convince them that they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives. What I have to do is convince the 5 to 10 percent in the center that are independents that are thoughtful, that look at voting one way or the other depending upon in some cases emotion, whether they like the guy or not, what it looks like.

We can leave it as an exercise for readers to determine how "significant" the difference is. Actual video clip can be seen here in case someone doesn't believe the transcript.

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Another megabytes the dust.