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Submission + - Decades Of Failed Promises From Verizon: It Promises Fiber To Get Tax Breaks... (techdirt.com)

jehan60188 writes: A decade ago, we wrote about how Verizon had made an agreement in Pennsylvania in 1994 that it would wire up the state with fiber optic cables to every home in exchange for tax breaks equalling $2.1 billion. In exchange for such a massive tax break, Verizon promised that all homes and businesses would have access to 45Mbps symmetrical fiber by 2015. By 2004, the deal was that 50% of all homes were supposed to have that. In reality, 0% did, and some people started asking for their money back. That never happened, and it appeared that Verizon learned a valuable lesson: it can flat out lie to governments, promise 100% fiber coverage in exchange for subsidies, then not deliver, and no one will do a damn thing about it.

Comment hooray for the government (Score 1, Insightful) 68

I'm so glad our benevolent overlords are here to keep us safe!
Banning things like UAVs, guns, and large sodas is definitely the best way to keep citizens (who are all too stupid to make their own decisions) healthy.
But thank goodness cops can still use guns and UAVs; they never abuse their power, and are always fully trained, so we know nothing could possibly go wrong!

Never mind educating and empowering them to make their own decisions, who has time for that?! No, we citizens want to be spoon fed. And as long as we have a good TV signal while american idol is on, we won't really care what you do to us

Comment do as I say, and as I did (Score 2) 280

I got a degree in mathematics, and didn't go the teaching route. after working for a while in the geophysics industry, I got bored and wanted more options- I realized the best way to open up a lot of options is to go the engineering route (every job posting I found interesting required a BS in ME)

so, go back to school. start at community college (get calculus, diff eq, physics, chemistry out of the way), and make a good impression on your professors there (evaluate the ones worth making an impression on). this isn't hard- you don't need kiss up to them, just volunteer to answer questions, sit up front, ask questions, etc. then go back to them and ask for letters of recommendation (masters programs usually require three)
then, (now this is key), get a 4.0 in your undergrad engineering classes (you'll need to take a few in order to 'catch up' to other grad students; but you won't have to waste time with classes outside of your specialty- I focused on thermofluids, and skipped advanced materials/vibrations stuff). Alternate between co-op semesters, and class/research semesters. Your degree will take a bit longer to complete, but you'll have a lot of fun, make important contacts, and have the chance to do really cool stuff (I joined formula SAE and EWB, and it was a blast)

After your first, or second semester, hit the job fairs. Try to get a coop/internship (maybe with an aerospace firm?). This will help finance your schooling- save your money, and use it for books/rent/food (not tuition, take out loans for that)

BUT this is assuming you want an MS in mechanical engineering. you say you want to go into STEM, and something space related. That's still incredibly vast- you could design fuel systems, airframes, engine components, heck (if you're good at it) you could make an entire career out of analyzing drag on nose cones!
So, don't say you want to go into space, quiet yet. Narrow down the field of STEM you want to work in- teaching math, researching biology, designing blu-ray players, investigating car crashes? I knew i wanted to go into ME, so I took the basic ME undergrad courses and fell in love with thermodynamics, and fluid mechanics- so I went the thermofluid route. I would've been happy designing pumps that move liquid chocolate around, but instead I get to work on the fuel system for the F-35
(also, read what color is your parachute)

Comment fun, but... (Score 1) 175

I've got a 1st gen printrbot.
it's fun, and you can make cute little (single colored) doodads; but that's about all it is.
I've made a few battery holders, which are a step up from what I usually did to carry spare AA and AAA batteries (wrap them in duct tape)

not a 'must have' device, by any means, but if you've got money burning a hole in your pocket, it's a fun toy.

Comment drop out (Score 2) 312

getting distracted by something else means you don't care enough about the subject to pay attention. if it wasn't a phone, you'd find another distraction because you don't care about whatever you're studying
you're ruining it for serious grad students by driving up tuition, and watering down the value of whatever degree you hope to achieve.

this is grad school, not the third grade- nobody's going to hold your hand through it, and nobody cares if you succeed or not.

Comment Re:So, ion drive or something??? (Score 4, Informative) 67

good question, the efficiency comes from the speeds achievable
squirting pressurized gas out of a nozzle into space results in an exit velocity of ve = sqrt(C), where C is some clever arrangement of specific heat, R, T, etc (it's been a while since i've study nozzle design)
Basically, the exit velocity is limited by mostly the chemical's temperature; quadrupling the absolute temperature would only double the speed, so a lot of energy would be needed

ions are different (bare with me, I'm not an electrical engineer), because you just need to create them (chemical reaction, heat, etc), and then control them (static field, magnetic field). it's a lot lower power, and a lot greater impulse (over a lot longer time) than what ejecting molecules in to space can provide

Submission + - women (and to a lesser degree men) with multiple children are most productive (washingtonpost.com)

jehan60188 writes: from: http://www.washingtonpost.com/...

"That’s the conclusion of a recent study from the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, which found that over the course of a 30-year career, mothers outperformed women without children at almost every stage of the game. In fact, mothers with at least two kids were the most productive of all. ...
They decided to analyze the amount of research published by more than 10,000 academic economists as a proxy for performance. A job in the ivory tower of academia requires higher education by definition, and their work is easily searched, recorded and ranked.

It's important to point out that the authors are examining a very narrow group of women with privileged circumstances. Parenthood was likely planned for many them, with benefits such as maternity leave and paid sick time. They can also better afford to pay for resources like reliable childcare that allow them to work longer. Low-income or low-skilled mothers often face a very different working environment."

full paper: http://research.stlouisfed.org...

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