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Comment Re:To be banned in 2020 (Score 1) 743

BTW, a typical incandescent bulb is 50 percent efficient.

No it isn't. High efficiency ones max out at 5.1%

Actually, a better way to measure the effectiveness of a light source is by it's luminous efficacy (values in the very link you provided). This gives a comparison of visible light that your eyes are sensitive to versus its consumption (lumens/watt). Eye sensitivity is relative to the black line, peaking at 555nm

Even though a typical incandescent has 5.1% efficiency, it doesn't sound nearly as bad as it actually is because that's counting light emitted that you eye's aren't even sensitive to (mostly infrared and crap near the red, which you're really terrible at seeing). [1]

On a scale of 1-683 (the scale of efficacy), 16/683 yields 2.3%. Compare this to a sodium street lamp which has an luminous efficacy of around 25% by using that weird color you're very sensitive to.

For some interesting comparisons,
[1] Spectral Output of various sources,

Comment Re:Why? (Score 1) 98

According to the wikipedia the receivers are cooled to 45K. So I'm going to guess this has a lot to do with it. I imagine getting all of those down to temperature again wouldn't be fun (making sure lines are clear/sealed/sound then re-pressurizing and monitoring for leaks etc)

Comment Live TV Broadcasts on other portable devices (Score 1) 225

As varied as it will be to all the readers here, I live in a semi-urban area and I get at least 15 HD over-the-air channel and at least double that with standard definition and of the big networks too.

The only difference it seems are they pulled the channels (temporarily for server reasons) that aren't typically broadcast OTA.

I can see the small, but free, perk of having these subscriber-limited channels available on the iPad. Do they offer them on the computer as well?

Comment Re:Don't know where you got that from... (Score 1) 270

Close: a mixture of Sodium Nitrate and Potassium Nitrate actually. Melts around 430*F and maintained at the 550*F noted. Various plant projects use slightly different mixtures but this is the baseline.

Wikipedia has a decent enough article, but I also saw a very good series on National Geographic called "Powering the Future" and they went into great detail about how these systems work.

Comment Re:That, or... (Score 1) 258

Oh, btw, you can build $400 CNC lathe easily if you don't count the PC. Just use Chinese electronic calipers, mount them, search for the interface protocol (some college thesis released the code), and put in 2b minimal backlash ball screws. Bolt it to A2 structural steel plate you can find surplus for $50, stuff nearly any electric motor onto it, and build a clamp for your knives/bits/cutters. Jack in the stepper controller off your printer port and rip the stepper off some near deadprinter. Another $200 and you can build decent tool changer on it too. Heck, ebay will help you find something more commercial quality for $400, like actual stepper drivers and motors of decent power and size for the job.

Do you have any more specific information on how to make these Frankenstein machines? You've already given tons of information, enough to spark a helluva interest in making one for shits and giggles, but I'm more curious about the interfacing to the machine. Do they use standards for communicating for example?

Links would be wonderful!

Comment Re:And 40 papers reference this one. (Score 1) 473

I could just be acting ignorant here, but how in the hell do these people get funded to reinvent the wheel. Not only that, aren't these papers peer reviewed? The few papers that I've seen go through the process (I didn't necessarily contribute) were scrutinized a ridiculous amount. Ahh the agony of seeing a proven system fail by user error.

Comment Re:No surprise (Score 1) 473

If you get take calculus, you would have covered this. The problem is nobody remembers it because it was a blip in class and every problem in the future that would use it was simply deemed "too difficult to worry about". Always gotta use those shortcuts and if you have to do it longhand, well..screw it, next problem.

Comment Stupid hype (Score 4, Insightful) 338

After reading the article, it's full of hype. They corrected themselves; it wasn't a power failure, but just a couple of missiles that started blabbering to the monitoring computers incorrectly so they unplugged them to prevent a cascade. Everyone in the article with a name (e.g. Sgt. Soandso) said everything was fine and they knew everything that was going on. Everyone without a name (e.g. "a general who is high up") happened to suggest otherwise.

Move along, nothing to see here -.-

Comment Battery Life Makes it Useless (Score 1) 103

So in the end, after reading the article, this is yet another phone with pathetic battery life.

They tested the phone in New York City (where I assume there is always at least a few bars on the phone) and it couldn't even make it an entire day. I understand there's going to be compromises for all of that power and speed, but why are they NOT taking a previous gen phone's speed as status quo for a new, different model with improved battery life.

I own a Samsung Moment right now (many more gripes than just the battery life on this one), but I live in an area with poor reception and am lucky to make it 8 hours. I ask around to find out what's wrong and the response I get is "You expect MORE than 8 hours of battery life? Jeese, you're insane to expect that from a smart phone". Keep in mind I don't even use the phone. It self-destructs just sitting there fighting for a signal. Fine, I'll accept that poor reception forces the phone to raise the power output of the transmitter/receiver instead of just fucking roaming. That's my fault for buying a smartphone without checking my address on the coverage map.

The problem here is I don't have any new alternatives. Apparently these new phones get even worse battery life now. So I can't even find a new product that fixes my current problem. I have to accept that my current phone's battery life is the best battery life I'll ever see.

In the end, I'll wait 2 more seconds for my browser to load up just so I can have a phone that will last a few more hours a day. Am I asking for too much?

Comment Re:Features (Score 1) 128

I love Chrome, , but I wish they would focus less on whiz-bang features, and focus more on filling in the gaps in the core features. Things like "Print Preview" and "Properties" when you right-click an image come to mind.

There is already a work in progress with a Chrome 7 switch for "Print Preview". The Chromium team doesn't recommend enabling these, but I've used a couple of them and have found them to be really useful. You just have only yourself to blame if something crashes.

I feel these are definitely worth looking at if you have the skills to enable them.

Comment Re:Prison Sentences (Score 1) 1127

An interesting point I learned in a psychology class is that 60% return to prison after their release. This was all discussed over the actual design of prison: social reform. The purpose, actually, is to have the inmates learn a new social behavior. The problem with prison is that it develops its own social norms and these are then instilled on the inmates, rather than proper behavior. The defining point of proper behavior are, of course, the cultural norms of the lawmakers at hand.

In a perfect world, inmates would be better trained to learn new behavior. A good leader of mass social learning is the military. They're -very- good at training people for their new environment, as long as we ignore the lack of retraining to reintroduce these people to their original society.

Comment Re:Hard to deny (Score 1) 1078

The level of stereotyping you're doing is completely and utterly appalling. I'm a fan of do what you want in your own house, as it's YOUR house. By even suggesting that a smoker should get up and leave their own house to do what they enjoy because it offends you is ridiculous. And in my particular state (Florida), you can't smoke inside of a public building. So that's that.

As far as considering people who smoke are all "ex-AOLers" who automatically drink and suck at life, rethink this statement. I'm sure any person who used the internet at all when dial-up was the only feasible option, used AOL at one point or another.

I'm sorry you think smoking is gross. Too bad it's just an opinion backed up by retarded comments.

Comment Re:I don't get it... (Score 5, Insightful) 332

My guess is it has to do with controlling the actual system for the passenger use. Pilots gotta have access to the No Smoking sign switch for example. So without any real technical background in how these systems work, I'd say they were simply given a switch to turn access on or off etc, and that simply meant some sort of basic connection had to be issued between the cockpit systems and passenger entertainment systems.

The FAA report doesn't say exactly what the connection is between the systems, it just says there is a connection. My guess is it's the FAA over-hyping a situation, or someone else, to try and get these birds as safe as possible. Although I would agree that the passenger system should be as isolated as possible, and if control of these systems is needed, just run separate lines that link only to that system, even if it is basically pointless if the connection I assume it is really is that simple. I guess i welcome my first post to /. too after reading it for a year or so and keepin my thoughts to myself =D

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