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Comment At least $50 billion invested by oil companies (Score 3, Informative) 357

The large oil companies have at least $50 billion invested in renewable energy. Google it.

You mentioned storage technology and wind. Here's example news from just one week last year. Total SA, the French oil supermajor, spent $1.1 billion to buy the battery maker Saft Groupe SA, complementing its 2011 purchase of a majority stake in the solar-panel maker SunPower Corp on a Monday. The next day, Canadian pipeline company Enbridge Inc. it would pay $218 million for stakes in offshore wind farms as it attempts to double its low-carbon generating capacity.

Comment Re:Relevant xkcd (Score 1) 190

How about being stuck on a road in a snowstorm without communication?

You're right - if you're stuck in a snowstorm a fire can save your life! Good thinking, Samsung

CAPTCHA: accuracy

If you can't start a fire with the typical objects in a modern automobile, you need to go watch a couple of reruns of McGyver or something. Talk about portable bombs.....

Comment Re:Really? (Score 2) 183

Lithium charge controllers are simple and cheap analog electronic devices. Leaving this functionality to a processor would make it needlessly complicated and invites problems when the thing inevitably crashes.

Even with a processor based system you'd still need current sensing hardware, which would be nearly as expensive as a dedicated charge controller.

Comment No price entices everyone from crime (Score 1) 30

> level of effort should never be a pricing metric, in much the same way that a surgeons salary should not

You may notice that becoming a surgeon requires a ton of effort. Therefore, people don't generally put out that level of effort unless they'll be well paid for it.

> at least priced high enough to entice everyone away from the black market.

There is no price, for any service, that customers are willing to pay and will entice everyone to do good rather than crime. Accountants get paid well to do things right, some choose crime instead. That'll always be true.

Submission + - Dinosaur Tail With Feathers Found Perfectly Preserved In Amber (bbc.com)

dryriver writes: The BBC reports: The tail of a feathered dinosaur has been found perfectly preserved in amber from Myanmar. The one-of-a-kind discovery helps put flesh on the bones of these extinct creatures, opening a new window on the biology of a group that dominated Earth for more than 160 million years. Examination of the specimen suggests the tail was chestnut brown on top and white on its underside. "This is the first time we've found dinosaur material preserved in amber," co-author Ryan McKellar, of the Royal Saskatchewan Museum in Canada, told the BBC News website. Co-author Prof Mike Benton, from the University of Bristol, added: "It's amazing to see all the details of a dinosaur tail — the bones, flesh, skin, and feathers — and to imagine how this little fellow got his tail caught in the resin, and then presumably died because he could not wrestle free."

Submission + - Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Stave Off Dakota Access Pipeline (For Now) (gardencollage.com)

rosamedi writes: After law enforcement recently escalated violence against the protectors at the Standing Rock camp and ordered them to evacuate, the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe at last have a victory to celebrate. Yesterday, the Department of the Army (which manages the contested land) announced they would not be approving the Dakota Pipeline’s passage under Lake Oahe in North Dakota.

Submission + - AT&T To Cough Up $88 Million For 'Cramming' Mobile Customer Bills (networkworld.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Some 2.7 million AT&T customers will share $88 million in compensation for having had unauthorized third-party charges added to their mobile bills, the Federal Trade Commission announced this morning. The latest shot in the federal government’s years-long battle against such abuses, these refunds will represent the most money ever recouped by victims of what is known as “mobile cramming,” according to the FTC. From an FTC press release: "Through the FTC’s refund program, nearly 2.5 million current AT&T customers will receive a credit on their bill within the next 75 days, and more than 300,000 former customers will receive a check. The average refund amount is $31. [...] According to the FTC’s complaint, AT&T placed unauthorized third-party charges on its customers’ phone bills, usually in amounts of $9.99 per month, for ringtones and text message subscriptions containing love tips, horoscopes, and 'fun facts.' The FTC alleged that AT&T kept at least 35 percent of the charges it imposed on its customers." The matter with AT&T was originally made public in 2014 and also involved two companies that actually applied the unauthorized charges, Tatto and Acquinity.

Comment Two sides to that. For a week's work, not bad (Score 1) 30

There are two sides to that. In a day I can run a suite of tools across a dozen such services. Those tools will find likely weak areas with little effort or time on my part. Over the next couple of days, I can explore the issues highlighted by the tools and quite possibly find an issue like this.

At current bug-bounty levels, I could probably earn a bit more than I could make at a salaried position, while setting my own hours and exploring the things that interest me. So prices are reasonably fair. Another way of looking at that is that skilled people DO in fact participate in bug bounty programs, so they find it worthwhile.

Yes, in theory committing crimes could be an easier way for people to make money, until they go to prison. A bank robber makes more per hour than a bank teller.

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