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Comment Not Really Required.... (Score 2) 113

Batteries are generally extremely heavy in their weight to energy ratio compared to gasoline. They also cost a fair bit of money and take a while to charge if you manage to drain that huge of a battery. Even your regular 240v home outlet could take a while. At some point aside from bragging rights it becomes impractical to have a battery that big. The Volt only has about a 40 mile battery and I've made it through the entire summer without having to resort to gas on my daily trips. I've even forgotten to plug the thing in at times and it still had enough. Granted I live in a small city so that helps but I can't see what having past 200 miles gains for you. It might be a bit easier for cross-country trips if you're hopping supercharger stations but I have a bad feeling that you're paying a huge amount in extra weight and costs for that minuscule usage situation. (Unless driving hundreds of miles a day is normal for you.)

Comment Ride the wave, bail before it crashes. (Score 1) 192

I don't think folks on the market were idiots, at some point due to market hype some folks hopped on hoping to ride the wave and to jump before it crashed. I think a lot of folks knew that it was way overvalued but decided to buy into it in the hopes to catch the wave. Some high speed trading systems that caught it early probably managed to make some decent money before it started to collapse again.

Comment Local Telco in our Area (Score 5, Interesting) 106

I work for a small city Telco (Tbaytel) in Canada. We're one of the few left in Canada created when the original founders of our city ended up disliking Bell and ended up covering a large area of NorthWest Ontario. Internet here is actually pretty good at reasonable rates and completely without download or upload limits. The only real limitation is speed depending on service but otherwise it's a reasonably good service. The competition between Tbaytel and the National Telco's is fierce but it has resulted in better services and savings I believe. The city owns the telco so a fair chunk of profits goes back to our community. So yes, it isn't impossible to have a provider that's partially government / commercial that isn't a complete rip-off to consumers.

Comment Re:drone ship landings require a lot less fuel? (Score 1) 103

Actually this isn't too hard to figure out why. Keep in mind two things, first the rockets are launched over ocean to make sure that if they do crash, they hopefully just land in the empty sea where they won't bother anyone. Second think of it like throwing a ball. To get it into high orbit you need a lot of forward momentum to keep it up there. You can't just throw it straight up because then it'll just fall back to earth or escape earth's gravity into deep space. It needs to be an arc. When shooting it into high orbit, the rocket's already gone so far offshore that it would take far too much fuel to return back to land so it's easier to let it fall in an arc onto a drone ship at sea. When going into low orbit there doesn't need to be so much forward momentum so it isn't as far offshore so it can return back to land. Another way to picture this, if the rocket simply cut out when it finished boosting the payload where would it end up without any assistance.

Comment All or Nothing (Score 1) 440

It's for cases like this that Google has decided that "Self-Driving" should be an all or nothing affair. The failure from what I read was the self-driving system was unable to tell the difference between the white transport truck and white overcast sky which is understandable. AI Optical Recognition systems are not perfect, heck even as humans we're prone to "optical illusions" so there's NO way a self-driving system using cameras is going to work 100% flawlessly. Granted from the speed this guy had the system set to and the fact he was watching Harry Potter is just asking for trouble. Google's system uses a LiDAR scanner which is an extremely expensive sensor system that Tesla doesn't have and isn't really found on production vehicles. Without that I wouldn't trust my life on an optical camera system only. This isn't a fault of the system but the fault of someone who doesn't understand the technology sadly.

Comment Hard to say if it's really that bad (Score 3, Interesting) 184

I think it's hard for a lot of folks to see both sides of the picture. I've worked both "crappy" jobs at a call center all the way up to a programmer for a telecom. There are times I wonder if I get paid way too much for doing so little work as a programmer compared to the crazy non-stop work as a call center agent. And while the call center job was a lot of work it always impressed me how some folks could handle that job happily and make thing seem a lot better. While sometimes my very well paid co-workers in telecom would complain about ridiculous things. I think some of those folks despite that crazy life style are having fun. They're pushing their abilities to the limits and accomplishing more than a lot of folks are. It's sometimes nice to be able to focus on one thing and to give it your all in life. Also letting your workers nap is a good thing. They've shown a 15 minute nap can double productivity. If I was the boss I'd encourage it. Life is a lot of things to different people for some it's anything but work but for some it is work. So either way, I wouldn't see it as bad necessarily.

Comment Well certainly not in my Area... (Score 1) 352

In Canada anyhow, wired Internet is both tremendously faster and cheaper too especially in my area with FIOS and unlimited packages. All mobile packages are expensive and charged per MByte. A good workaround is to connect to your friend's wifi points or to the numerous free wifi points found all over the city. While in theory I could afford mobile Internet why waste the price of home Internet for extremely limited service.

Comment High Power Issue (Score 3, Informative) 113

I think a part of the problem with USB-C is that it can handle up to 100 watts of power delivery! If your cable is of questionable quality or has issues, messing up 100 watts of power can definitely break things or cause a fire. I think amazon decided to go the safer route instead of destroying equipment or causing fires.

Submission + - Toy Dog Sam Lost on Re-Entry

foxalopex writes: It seems some students in Lancashire England decided to launch a helium balloon to the upper atmosphere with a Toy Dog (Sam) attached. Unfortunately on return it appears Sam decided to go skydiving without a parachute and broke loose from their equipment. There's now a hilarious missing dog video and even a reward!

Comment Chevy Volt is a good option too (Score 1) 161

I still find it odd that a lot of folks considering an EV completely forget about the Volt. The new 2016 model has about 50 miles of range on pure electricity and switches over to gas when you run out completely eliminating any range anxiety or need to wait for the car to charge. In actual practice, I have the older 2013 model and so far it has served me well for years now. I end up running completely gas free summers and only burn gas in the depths of winter or when I decide to make a cross-country trip. It's also cheaper than the Model 3 Tesla. So cheaper, virtually no limitations. (Works like an EV if you don't drive too far and works like a hybrid when you do.) I would think that it'd be a no-brainer for a lot of folks.

Comment Re:$50,000 in Canada (Score 1) 161

Actually, I own a Volt and I live in Canada. The Volt is much cheaper and has a large enough battery that will make it electric for most average trips. I've gone whole summers without gas. Best of all when you actually do want to go cross-country you have a gas engine to make the trip. Personally I wouldn't trade my Volt for a pure EV, it's far more flexible.

Comment Ice Melt Drives Ocean Currents (Score 1, Insightful) 245

The way this is explained isn't entirely clear to your average folk. I suspect folks are going to think that the fact that arctic ice isn't decreasing is a sign that everything is alright and that global warming is not a problem but it is much bigger than that. Each year arctic ice the size of a country melts in a cycle that refreezes in the winter. The cold freshwater melt is heavier than the surrounding seawater and sinks straight to the bottom starting many of the worldwide ocean currents. If this cycle gets disrupted or changed in some way it has a massive effect on worldwide climate. These currents drive many weather patterns such as rain, hurricanes, dry spells and heatwaves and cold snaps. What this article is suggesting is that the warm currents from equator might not reach the arctic resulting in the arctic getting colder and the equator getting hotter which will inevitably change entirely how our regional climate works. When something like this happens it results in entire weather systems such as monsoon rains which we're use to moving to different places on the planet. This usually isn't a good thing.

Comment Well that's awesome but... (Score 4, Interesting) 157

I've always admired OLEDs based screens for their colour accuracy and amazing flatness. With falling costs they would actually make the perfect display. Unfortunately, I am not sure if they resolved the issue of the pixels gradually burning out especially when it comes to blue leaving you with a yellow screen over the long term. It might not matter so much in a phone which typically arn't used more than a few years but that's not something you would want in a TV or monitor.

Comment Not entirely a surprise, But... (Score 1) 228

To be honest this wasn't entirely a surprise, wireless I have to admit is very convenient thou and well as they say there's a fine balance between convenience and security. On the other hand a lot of modern cars feature systems such as OnStar which means your vehicle can be tracked or disabled by the manufacturer so they're not exactly the most ideal cars to try to steal.

And no, these keys are encrypted but the problem is they're using a "range-extender" to make make it seem like your key is right next to the car when in reality it is a fair distance away.

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