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Comment Re:Google, Motorola, Intel . . . (Score 2) 266

Compared to many countries, the United States has an educated and enthusiastic workforce.Productive workers offset some amount of taxation.

Bwahahahaha,

Haven't spent much time working outside the states have you?

Our work ethic and quality is actually pretty typical. What has always made the US an economic powerhouse is technological superiority. As that edge is slowly eroded, other nations have surpassed us in productivity, and the US will only slide further down that list as other nations advance. Trump is right in that we should do something to "make America great again". The only trouble is he doesn't have the foggiest clue how to actually do it.

Comment Re:Google, Motorola, Intel . . . (Score 1) 266

Make repatriating money easier and cheaper and two things will happen: 1) money will come back into the US and help our economy 2) whoever does it will be crucified for being easy on big business income taxes.

Yeah, I think we've had enough of the carrot in American business.

How about this for a plan: Change the tax code to tax them at 35% whether they bring the money back to the US or not. If they have been holding out like apple, add a special provision that its 45% just because fuck em.

If trump were to actually grow a set and use the stick instead of the carrot, he might actually get re-elected in four years (Assuming they don't figure out how to impeach him first, and even then he STILL might get re-elected).

Comment Re: Going to be dead on arrival (Score 2) 105

I guess that's why they don't use tanks and use fuel cells instead then.

Just in case you actually don't know what a fuel cell is: Its an electricity generator, not a fuel storage device. You still have to have something to store the fuel in (a tank). The fuel is then transfered into the Fuel cell slowly where it is converted into electricity and waste products (water in the case of hydrogen fuel cells).

Comment Re: Going to be dead on arrival (Score 2) 105

Are you telling me they can't put it in a tank designed to store liquid hydrogen?

A tank designed to contain liquid hydrogen has to be kept *cold*, *very cold*. Failure to do so causes the tank to rupture, and you will get a massive conflagration if not outright explosion.

Cryogenics plants are not small, or light. If you change that from liquid hydrogen to compressed hydrogen gas, that is now a factor of 40, not 4.

Compressed hydrogen gas actually makes lithium ion look safe by comparison. Liquid Hydrocarbon fuels are not explosive under vary many scenarios, usually requiring a heated pressurized environment. Many types of hydrocarbon fuels wont even burn under normal STP. Hydrogen gas by contrast loves to burn, and is a mess to contain (leaking hydrogen has no smell, and it is perfectly possible for a container to leak hydrogen but be "air tight" to everything else).

Comment Re:Does Tesla actually make a profit? (Score 1) 198

1 Average of annual losses in 2005 through 2014. Estimated losses in 2014 for the entire United States were about 5%.

I was intentionally using worst case numbers for everything. My point was to illustrate that even when comparing best case gasoline numbers against worst case electric numbers, the balance is still wildly in favor of electrics...

Comment Re:Does Tesla actually make a profit? (Score 2) 198

You would get even bigger savings.

Ummm, No.

The best of the lot: Flyweheels are fundamentally limited by how much mechanical energy can be stored safely in a flywheel. A flywheel significant enough to store the energy of a 2 ton motor vehicle moving at 75 MPH is going to require so much mass that it will actually impair the maneuverability of the vehicle (unless it is fully gimbaled, in which case, it is going to weigh a lot more, and will require a hugely complex slip-ring arrangement, which will take up a huge amount of space).

One of the most powerful flywheel systems ever built was a 133kwH pack for railway use. It occupied the better part of a locomotive, weighed 25 tons, and could accelerate the locomotive to cruising speed (although not much more). Compare that to Tesla's 80kwH pack that fits handily inside a passenger vehicles with room to spare for other amenities such as passengers. Flywheels have had 100+ years of research and that is the best it gets. Batteries on the other hand have had around 20 years of real research, and there is still a lot of room for them to continue improving.

I'm sorry to have to tell you that if you got a mechanical engineering degree hoping to design vehicles, you wasted your time. The future of transportation is electric, and not even a trillion dollar automotive industry could prevent it forever.

Comment Re:Does Tesla actually make a profit? (Score 2) 198

Gasoline on the road versus coal/natural gas/etc... in a power plant, then transferred at a slight loss through the electric grid, transferred at a loss to charge batteries, then transferred at a loss again into mechanical energy. That is ignoring the additional problems with the complex chemistry, manufacture, and eventual disposal of batteries versus steel and aluminum engines. Almost certainly not better when everything is accounted for.

Ok; lets pick that apart, only this time with actual knowledge instead of your "intuition".

First, Gasoline engines are around 20% efficient. That means you burn 5 gallons of gas and get 1 gallon of gas worth of actual travel. Plus, Gasoline cars do not have regenerative breaking (we'll get to that later).

Second, Electricity production using Natural Gas has 35% efficiency. So for that equivalent 5 gallons of gas, you get 1.666 gallons of gas worth of travel, but you have to add charging efficiency, battery to wheel efficiency and of course transmission line efficiency. I'll leave it as an exercise to the reader to look those up, but For rough numbers, the battery to road efficiency is about 87%, the transmission line efficiency is about 50%, and the charging efficiency is about 85%. There are some other minor factors, but the big ones above are the main items. So, you take and multiply all of the efficiencies number to get the final efficiency. With electric vehicles, that efficiency is about 13% all told.

So! now we know that gas engines really are more efficient! Not so fast, heres where that regenerative breaking I mentioned above comes into play. There is no known way to convert mechanical energy back into gasoline, but with an electric vehicle, the circuits to take mechanical energy and put it back into the battery when breaking are very trivial to make. That means that the amount of energy it takes to make an electric car with regen breaking go 1 mile is far far less than it is to make a gasoline car go the same distance when all other factors are included. This number is typically 1/4 of the energy on average. That means that of that original 5 gallons of gas worth of energy, the electric car only got .64 gallons, but that will take the car 2.58 gallons of gas worth of distance while the gasoline car only got a gallon of gas worth of distance. Regen breaking is the key folks, always has been. With electric vehicles, regen is almost automatically included. With all other types of propulsion, it is a nasty and complex problem that is usually solved by ---- you guessed it---- adding a battery and electric motor...

Comment Re:MPAA, RIAA and Big Pharma (Score 5, Insightful) 355

Wow, I think we might be seeing an actual difference. There was never any difference between Democrats and Republicans But there might be some difference between Trump and Democrats/Republicans. Most of it could be bad, but still...

A very large segment of the population no logner cares if trump is good or bad, they are just sick of getting screwed by the politicians, and if trump ends up screwing them just like every other president in recent history, at least some of the elites are likely to take it in the shorts as well. Its the scorched earth mentality, and it is the logical result of 30+ years of policy that favors the wealthy at everyone elses expense. Anyone who thinks that this is a strictly the republicans doing, needs to take a close look a the Clinton economic policy (both of them) to realize that the democrats were just as complicit. These asshole politicians made their own bed over the last three decades and are either so insulated from their actual constituency, or so corrupt they don't care how bad they are screwing the majority of the people. I for one loathe Both trump and Clinton, but at least with Trump there is a chance that those with the power and the money will get the hint and in 4 years will put some policies on the table that actually benefit society instead of the new feudal lords. Policies like single payer health care, and free education are not just nice sounding ideas, they are all that stands between the trump hordes and open revolution. Trump was just a warning shot, the next round will be played with live ammo.

Comment Re:Serious he missed the 2 biggest problems I've h (Score 5, Interesting) 497

Easily the most annoying problem in programming I face is functional requirements not being fully specced out before the project begins

This is one of the most fundamentally misunderstood problems in software design. Probably because it is not really a software problem at all, but a business problem, and the solutions require intelligent business decisions which seem to be beyond everyone.

The solution to the specification problem is not more detailed design specs. The reason is simple. The people writing the detailed spec are not the people using the software, and they are not the people writing the software, so they are in no way competent at providing communications between the two. All of the successful software designs that I have seen are the result of competent programmers becoming involved in the completion of a task that software automation would apply very well to. Those people then subsequently write the software applying their first-hand knowledge of how the software will be used, and what the users needs are.

If you want your software to be very well designed, sit the programmers down to perform the job of the people who will use the software. They need to become proficient at this job, so a 1 week training course aint going to cut it. You need them to spend at least a month doing the job.

If you have the software developers do this, you will get exceptional results without the need for any kind of specification, or other real involvement, because the programmers are naturally very good at optimizing processes, otherwise they wouldn't be good at programming at all. The client gets the features they need, want, and didn't even know they could have. The software design itself is cleaner and faster because the developers have a fully fleshed out idea of what the software needs to do, and can design to meet the need instead of designing to meet a spec that may or may not remotely resemble what is feasible , practical, or correct.

Comment Re:Don't worry guys... (Score 1) 414

Every major company out there breaks visa laws is huge ways, and that the government is complicit in it.

That doesn't make it acceptable behavior for a presidential candidate. As many as 1 in three women are sexually assaulted, 1 in 10 men. Does that mean that it is acceptable for a rapist to be president, because he/she know how rapists think and promises to end sexual assault?

Trump knows this, he knows that companies are forced to break laws to compete. And his turning this around will benefit everyone, on every level of society.

The man has absolutely no incentive to change any of that, and all of the incentive in the world to leave it as it is. When/if he gets out of office, he will go back to his business, where he will have to work within whatever he sets up. He has no reason in the world to fix anything while he is in office, and there is plenty of reason to believe he will not do anything he has promised. The man is a pathological liar. His track record of contradicting himself, and provable significant lies is so long and distinguished that there is practically no way of knowing what he will actually do, other than based on his recorded actions, which I am afraid are indicative of a person who will do whatever he pleases and damn the consequences to anyone else.

There was and is only one candidate in this election with the integrity and consistent history of actions that indicates they would do good by people. Unfortunately he is not on the ballot in my state, nor any other that I am aware of.

Sanders for president. We don't need the delusional crazy asshole for president, and we don't need the reckless more-of-the-same candidate for president. We've had 30 years of the more-of-the-same presidents and it has gotten us massively into debt, ruined our economy through two major recessions, put an entire race of people behind bars for no good reason and created record income inequality in our country. Both major parties have been complicit in fucking over the masses for the benefit of the privileged few. Now the chickens have come home to roost with Trump, but don't for one second think to come to my door complaining about how things turn out when it comes back to bite all of you in the ass, because I will be defending whats mine with the fury of a thousands suns because I wont let the idiots of this world use democracy to screw over me and mine.

Comment Re:Don't worry guys... (Score 2) 414

Trump followed the law, but wants change trade law and work visa laws to stop that sort of thing in the future.

No, Trump broke the law, and he got away with it because of his ability to bribe his way out. He is and always has been the worst kind of filth this country can produce. He continues to thrive because so many Americans are so clueless as to the ways the world really works, that they will let him say and do anything he wants without consequences. Trumps remarkable success this election season is proof positive that Democracy is a failure. Sooner or later, the ignorant masses will do something monumentally self-destructive, and Democracy gives them the power to do so.

Please note that when I say ignorant masses, I mean people who do not have a clear understanding of the consequences of their own actions. People who believe that Trump is somehow going to change course after 50 years of screwing everyone around him to make a buck, and is somehow going to work for the benefit of the American people. People who believe that after 3 marriages and god-knows how many affairs that somehow Trump is past all that, and is now a moral man.

People (and by people here, I mean almost every human on the planet) are particularly bad at seeing beyond their own prejudices. Americans see politicians how they want to see them: As good guys or bad guys, and they are not about to let reality impede on those opinions. Its times like these that have convinced me the human race is doomed, and that we deserve the fate were building for ourselves.

Comment Re:Fueling is risky? (Score 1) 190

These actually appear to be some of the most reasonable "boondoggles" ever to have been co-financed by US taxes. Certainly it appears better to fund technological R&D than to finance useless wars or $5000 off-the-shelf hammers or ridiculous finance flows in healthcare and others.

Lets not forget those endless tax breaks for the wealthiest 1%, and enough loopholes in the tax code so they can enjoy not paying taxes at all...

Comment Re:Ground SpaceX for a very long time (Score 1) 190

US manned spaceflight has been littered with cutting corners for fifty years. So was Russian manned spaceflight, for that matter.

The Russians were epically careless, and life in Russia is cheap. They would have crammed a lit stick of dynamite down a cosmonauts throat if they thought any part of him might make it into space that way...

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