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Comment Re:Like many inventions ... (Score 2) 250

the euro-pallet is a lot easier to get up narrow stairways common in the ultra-dense cities of europe, south america, india, china etc and the smaller size allows the vehicle to get down streets and alleyways that a standard UPS van might not be capable of.

The narrow streets I get, but how do you move a loaded pallet up a stairway?

Comment Re:Prevent Death-By-Powerpoint (Score 1) 291

The very worst thing I see when someone opens a presentation is "Slide 1 of 50+". If you do want to use slides, use them as a guide only. A single picture is lots better than 20 bullet points. And for heavens sake, Do Not Read The Text To Us!!!

Make sure you know your subject, prepare 4 slides max and talk about your subject. Start with a question or quiz to engage your audience. Trick them into a 'Duh...' moment. Get interactive and don't be afraid to say "I don't know"...

I agree with everything up to the "4 slides max" part. A good rule of thumb is no more than 1 slide per minute, and you don't need tricks to make a good presentation. What you need is practice. That's the most important part of preparing a good presentation. You have to practice the entire presentation at least twice, preferably in front of another person who can tell you (after you've finished) which parts didn't flow well and why. Even someone who doesn't understand the material can give you a good idea of which parts are awkward or difficult to follow, and whether you're talking too quickly or slowly.

The 2000 Beanies

Submission + - 2011 Hugo Awards (

An anonymous reader writes: The Hugo Award® is the leading award for excellence in the field of science fiction and fantasy. The Hugos are awarded each year by members of the World Science Fiction Society, and presented at the World Science Fiction Convention (Worldcon).
The winners were announced Saturday, August 20th, 2011, during the Hugo Awards Ceremony at Renovation in Reno, Nevada. 2011 Hugo Award Winners 2100 valid voting ballots were counted and presented at

Comment Re:simplicity (Score 1) 722

3)Titanium Dioxide, used to make many white paints white, is a photo-catalyst, which means it can self-clean and chew up pollutants in the air.

Titanium dioxide is only effective as a photocatalyst if you use very small particles (tens of nanometers in diameter) of the anatase phase. Rutile, the most common naturally-occurring phase, is a very inefficient photocatalyst, and that's what you would find in conventional white paint. You could use anatase nanoparticles as your pigment instead, but it would add to the cost, and it's not readily available for this level of consumption.

Comment Re:Prior Art? (Score 2) 325

That's the wrong patent application. The author (who doesn't seem to understand patent law) linked to another application by the same inventor. The correct publication is here.

The first claim in the application (which may or may not be the one that will appear in the actual patent, though it's probably pretty close) is very specific. It requires, among other things, that "each user device [have] a local database and an application for... sharing desktop resources," and that "the information and the application services being delivered to the users are based upon knowledge of relevant experts." I don't see how you could argue that Twitter infringes here, and it definitely doesn't address messaging or chatting in general.

Comment Re:I'm confused (Score 3, Informative) 106

Actually, you pretty much describe the system as it exists. The 1 year period the GP refers to is for a provisional patent. You file the provisional patent saying "I'm about to release a cool new invention that does X" and then you have one year to release it and file for a non-provisional patent, which lasts for 20 (or 14 if it's a design patent covering the form rather than the function).

No. It's only considered prior art if it's offered for sale in the U.S. more than 1 year before the filing date. See 35 USC 102(b). This has nothing to do with a provisional application.

Comment Practice makes perfect (Score 1) 319

In my experience, the more often I teach a particular lecture, the smoother and more effective it will be. Forcing someone to change a lecture because the students expect it is unreasonable. Granted, some changes are simple (PowerPoint instead of overhead slides, lecture video available for download, electronic copies of handouts, etc.), but really, a halfway decent lecturer will understand where improvements can be made, and no amount of technology will make a bad teacher much better.

Besides, anyone who thinks college courses are intended to prepare you for the real world either never went to college or never had a real job.

Comment We're Not All So Lucky (Score 1) 422

My iPhone dropped about 12 inches, if that, to a sidewalk, and the screen shattered. It looked like I'd hit it with a hammer. I caught a ride to the airport from family for an early flight, and fell asleep in the passenger seat. The phone slipped out of my pants pocket, and when I opened the door to get out it fell and hit the sidewalk.

AT&T has a 30 day warranty on the iPhone. Anything beyond that, you're out of luck and you have to talk to Apple. I'd had the phone for maybe 3-4 days beyond that period. AT&T refused to do anything. I went to the Genius Bar at an Apple store, and they told me that, gosh, it's safety glass. It's not supposed to break like that. I said, "And yet..." They told me to talk to AT&T and see if they'd do anything. I got the sense that since I didn't buy Applecare, they didn't give a shit about me. I loved my iPhone, but the royal buttfucking Apple gave me over a product that they as much as admitted to me was defective completely took away any of the respect I had for their brand. The only Apple product I might consider buying now is an iMac, because I'm a musician. When I get one, I'll be getting it used, and Apple won't see a dime of my money.

Apple has jumped the shark as a company, and no longer feel like they have any responsibility to their customers. Pull the wool off your eyes and realize they're like any other big corp.

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