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Comment Re: Gravity waves != gravitational waves (Score 1) 55

"Gravity waves" seems misleading or confusing. Maybe it stuck for historical reasons?

It stuck because it is accurate.

Labeling their cause as one force among multiple is problematic communication.

All scientific communities have their terminologies, and "gravity waves" is an accurate use of the words for fluid dynamics. It is not gravity that CAUSES the waves, it is gravity that moderates them.

Comment Re: Gravity waves != gravitational waves (Score 1) 55

Let's see if I got this straight: Cloud particles gravitationally pull on each other

No. At least not to any significant amount.

It seems we normally don't see these on Earth because our thicker atmosphere and magnetosphere overwhelm gravity's direct influence.

What is it you think that keeps our "thicker atmosphere" where it is if it isn't "gravity's direct influence"?

Gravity waves are waves in something that are moderated by the force of gravity. E.g. regular waves at the beach are gravity waves. The properties depend directly on the difference in densities between the two layers in contact. For surface waves this is air/water. For subaqueous (or "internal") waves, it is a water/water interface.

There are also infragravity waves. Those are waves created by wave-wave interactions that occur at frequencies very much below those of gravity waves. A surface gravity wave may have a period of 10-15 seconds. An infragravity wave may be 100-200 seconds in period. Think "sneaker".

And while you might think that the ripples on the surface caused by wind are called "ultragravity" waves, they are actually called "capillary waves".

Comment he is looking at it wrong (Score 1) 102

While the GOP continue to waste money on the SLS/Orion debacle, they are also continuing funding for new space, though it was left open.
If money is spent on multiple private space stations, along with sending us to the moon VIA NEW SPACE, then it will allow for the infrastructure to be put in place and the price for launches, space operations, etc to drop. And a once a month launch of the BFR to the moon/space would help him far more than direct cash will.

Comment Re:Municipal/County Fiber (Score 1) 171

The municipalities are not competing/wanting to compete with Cable TV providers or violate their contracts by laying their own fiber and providing internet.

You cannot condemn Comcast for being a rotten, expensive ISP with one voice and then deny that Comcast is an ISP with another. Yes, municipalities that are trying to run their own internet service are in DIRECT competition with a company that they have a contract with that demands all kinds of other things that the city doesn't want to provide.

The big broadband providers, including cable companies lobbied states to get special laws passed designed to kill the municipal projects.

Of course. Incumbent ISPs that have contracts that demand levels of service and types of services are at a direct disadvantage to local governments that don't have those contractual requirements. If the city wants to play in the ISP market, it should have to follow the same rules they enforce on commercial vendors -- ALL of those rules.

No: municipalities are only able to do this for Cable TV Service,

Which is how the Cable internet providers get access to the rights of way in the first place.

the franchise agreements don't apply to other services that the municipalities are not empowered to create a monopoly in for the first place.

The franchise agreements absolutely apply to services that municipalities cannot create monopolies in, like Cable TV. Exclusive franchises are a violation of federal law and have been so for a very long time.

Telecoms that put in and own fibre optics on the other hand are federally regulated and cannot be franchised by a municipality.

That's pretty funny, since I'm looking at my last CenturyLink (telecom) bill and it contains a specific line item fee for "franchise at 3%." Apparently my city can, and does, franchise the local telecom, despite this special "federal regulated" status they hold.

Comment Re:Yeah, maybe (Score 1) 171

"highway construction project that gets federal funding"

And it is the local government that is managing the rights of way (not "highways") where "dig once" conduits will be most useful.

State highway construction is currently pretty rare (at least in my part of the country), and when it happens it covers only a short stretch of road that is being replaced outside city limits.

It's pretty useless to require "dig once conduits" for a small stretch of state highway since that is usually where the major internet distributors run fiber anyway, not the local cable company. And it would do little to nothing to help improve last mile distribution in rural areas, and nothing at all within a city.

Comment Re:Why federal law? (Score 0) 171

Speculation: because the local governments have already signed their souls over.

Translation: because the local governments have already entered franchise agreements with the incumbent cable provider.

Sadly (not really), the existence of a franchise agreement between the local government and the cable company is not a reason that this is a power granted to the federal government. "We don't like the way you exercised your local prerogatives" isn't grounds for federal preemption.

Comment Re:Municipal/County Fiber (Score 0) 171

Or, you know, you could just eliminate the laws that prohibit/restrict Municipal and/or County fiber projects.

That would be a major change to contract law. The issue with a city competing with an incumbent cable provider is one of contracts. The cable provider has a franchise that has all sorts of conditions and requirements, which would be patently unfair for the city to ignore when it wants to compete. If a company has to do X to operate within a city, then the city itself should be required to do X when it wants to do the same thing.

Of course, the big boys (Verizon et al) Hate it, because it dramatically lowers the bar to their competition.

No, they hate it for two reasons. First, it costs them a lot of money (in franchise fees, for one thing) to comply with the terms of their franchise, none of which will be an expense to the municipal provider. Second, they have to operate at a profit in order to exist; the municipality has the general fund (taxpayer's pockets) to dip into if they operate at a loss, and no requirement to be profitable at all.

Comment Re:Yeah, maybe (Score 1) 171

And, IMHO, it's an issue for the states, not the feds. Communications which enables Interstate Commerce is not itself Interstate Commerce.

And more important, it is an issue of how a municipality manages it's own rights of way. Since the conduits will be empty, as you point out, it cannot be enabling interstate commerce.

I can see this at the state level, but not federal.

Comment Re:cheaper to keep 'er (Score 1) 140

The conglomos want to get you into thinking that by bundling you're saving money when you're not.

For what definition of "save"?

For Comcast in my area, I can get Internet alone, 25MBps, for $30/month for the first 12 months, $60/month after that. I can get "140+ channels" of TV for $50/month for 12 months, $55-$75/month after that "depending on area".

I can get a bundle with both for $80/month for 12 months, $100/month after.

If I bought them separately I'd pay the same $80/month for the first 12 months, but then the rates jump to $115-$135/month, which is $15-$35 MORE than the bundled rate. So, while it is true that you don't save with a bundle for the first 12 months, the cost is considerably less after that 12 month ends.

I'd call that "saving money".

Of course, if you don't WANT TV, then you cannot possibly save money by getting TV. It's pretty obvious, it's not a "sale" if it is something you don't want. The "save money" condition is that you want both services and would buy them individually without a better priced bundle, which does save you money.

Comment Re:So that means (Score 1) 54

You've hit it almost on the head. This isn't about better security, it's about worse. It's a Chinese plot to force us all to untape the cameras on our laptops hoping we'll forget to retape them after logging in, and then they can spy on us. And they'll get to see whatever the background is while we're logging in.

Remember, don't leave large blueprints containing intellectual property taped to the wall behind you when you log in to your terminal or all your bases will belong China.

Comment Re:It's a gesture (Score 1) 54

the advantage of speaking the word versus tapping on the keyboard is that it's harder for someone else to duplicate.

And the disadvantage is that anyone within earshot can hear what your password is.

This is why I absolutely loathe voice operated call directors. I'm in an office with other people and I have to tell everyone what I'm doing, instead of simply silently pushing a few buttons. Usually it winds up with me shouting "HUMAN BEING" or "GET ME A DUCKING PERSON" when the voice detection system doesn't have the option I need.

Of course, the fact that they are poorly programmed to start with, asking questions like "are you calling about a current account or opening a new one?" and don't understand when I answer "yes".

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