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Comment Re:Sounds dangerous (Score 2) 73

When you consider what types of parts that can be made from printing in metal, they parts quite likely come out stronger than milling because it isn't possible for any shape to be milled. Also consider that not every part needs to be structural, and those that are, if the raw material isn't as strong you can re-design the part to be bigger. Since titanium is lighter than steel, you can have a bigger part and still come out with lower weight. NASA uses it as does GE.

Comment Re:Hypocrisy... (Score 2) 346

Would you call the difference between a 486 and a core i7 substantial? There's plenty of information out there about jet engines, and certainly a talented individual could build one. But to build an engine that has 35,000+ lbs thrust and can withstand temperatures of 3500+ F, amongst other things, is not exactly trivial.

Comment Try the JMP demo (Score 2) 146

I use and like JMP from SAS. They offer a free 30 day demo and I think it does a good job at data visualization and statistical modeling, or as they call it, discovery. It will interface with SAS, R, Excel along with various database packages for additional capability that may not exist in the core product. I found it pretty easy to pick up with a fairly active user base to help get started.

Comment Re:Still not as versatile as an iPod Touch... (Score 2, Informative) 313

It isn't allowed because it has potential to do things other than being a calculator during a test. One could load an entire text book, take photos of tests and email questions, surf the web, and any other number of activities that would be construed as cheating. It's much easier to require a real calculator, no matter how overpriced or limited they are.

Submission + - West Virginia is geothermically active (

sciencehabit writes: Researchers have uncovered the largest geothermal hot spot in the eastern United States. According to a unique collaboration between Google and academic geologists, West Virginia sits atop several hot patches of Earth, some as warm as 200C and as shallow as 5 kilometers. If engineers are able to tap the heat, the state could become a producer of green energy for the region.

Comment Re:Should be reliable (Score 1) 334

Industrial gas turbines hooked up to a heat recovery steam generator (HRSG) are barely 60% thermally efficient for the latest technology, most are in the 40-55% range. The turbine alone might be 30-35%. Micro gas turbines are between 25-35% and they are not hooked up to an HRSG.

What they do have going for them is a high power to weight ratio, comparable efficiency, and lower emissions because of the fuels they can run on. According to this other article, you're saving 220 lbs when comparing to a similarly powerful ICE.

The manufacturer of the turbines in this car is Bladon Jets.

Submission + - Chevy Volt: Not Green Enough for California (

thecarchik writes: Now we know: The first two plug-in cars from major manufacturers will go head-to-head on warranties and lease prices: $350 a month for the 2011 Chevrolet Volt, $349 for the 2011 Nissan Leaf.
Now the choice shifts to other measures, including electric and overall range, as well as the plug-in perks that states like California offer to early adopters to encourage them to opt for electric cars.
This is where it gets interesting. While California loves the Nissan Leaf, current regulations deny Chevy Volt buyers two significant perks: a $5,000 rebate, and permission to drive solo in HOV Lanes.

Comment Re:Goodness, Who To Believe... (Score 1) 410

The speed of the aircraft is somewhat irrelevant. The components inside the engine can move at speeds of 1800 kph while the plane is standing still. In the fan and compressor sections of a modern engine, abrasives like ash will erode material, making the aerodynamics worse and possibly causing liberation of moving parts. Once the ash makes it past the compressor, the 2500 F firing temperature melts the ash, which then deposits on the turbine section, causing poor aerodynamics, vibration, and other not so pleasant outcomes.
Social Networks

Submission + - Cult of Contagionism (

An anonymous reader writes: A new paper entitled "The Spread of Evidence-Poor Medicine via Flawed Social-Network Analysis" shows that the claims by Christakis and Fowler that obesity, smoking, happiness and loneliness are contagious are unfounded. A win for statistics. A loss for the social contagionists. The social epidemic has been cured!

Submission + - Pixar-pioneered 3D graphics meet radiology (

Lanxon writes: Getting a good look at a person's guts without using a scalpel isn't easy. But help is on the way from an unlikely source: Buzz Lightyear. Radiologist Richard Breiman, of the University of California, San Francisco is harnessing 3D graphics technology pioneered by Pixar, reports Wired (with some images). Called volume rendering, it can assemble those CT slices into images that are viewable from any angle. Breiman can even manipulate the picture, gamer style — spin it around or animate it for, say, a flight through the bowel.

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