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Comment Re:Goodwill & Dell Computer (Score 2) 274

Bullshit. MIT tracking study found only 14% of CRTs were exported, and most of those were found in reuse operations. And they didn't even track any large CRT TVs (only small monitors) which haven't had much of an export market for a decade. The NGOs who made up this story about "primitive" tech sector have a uniqure role, raising millions with pictures of kids at foreign dumps, but not actually sharing a single penny with the people in the photos - instead driving it into these warehouses. I'm a lifelong environmentalist, but the NGO's "CRT e-waste policy" was a sever case of malpractice, planned obsolescence, and racial profiling.

Comment Re:That's why I pay to recycle monitors (Score 4, Informative) 274

Mod Down! That's the biggest bullshit. I was at the so-called "largest e-waste dump" in Africa 3 weeks ago (my second visit). Total and complete hoax. World Bank data shows how many African city households had televisions 20 years ago (millions) and the major problem is that Africans aren't throwing them away - there are not enough of them burned, because they repair them forever. I don't like to throw the "racist" term around, but the fact that so many reporters repeated this false story about the "primitive" Africa Tech Sector is kind of telling. UK is the worst, actually put an African TV repairman in jail, citing 80% bullshit statistic at his hearing (which the NGO now admits was false).

Comment Bad Waste Policy (Score 5, Informative) 274

I'm a professional CRT recycler with experience with the companies in the article. The leaded silicate in CRT glass can actually be valuable as a fluxing agent. It's basically the same as anglesite, the leaded quartz that's mined worldwide. But because of e-waste alarmism (e.g. original article said they were full of "toxic gases", still says the CRTs "explode"), the primary copper and lead smelting industries stopped accepting the material. I personally managed several hundred tons of cullet from one on the companies in the article, but the smelter didn't like the regulators and environmentalists poking around, or the red tape. So they went back to mining lead and silica from the ground. Here's an article I wrote about the "no good deed goes unpunished" aspects of CRT glass recycling. Previously I wrote one - also published in Motherboard - about how Asian refurbishers stopped buying CRTs from America for the same reason (they were being cast as "primitive wire burners).

A good rule of thumb is that the worst forms of recycling are better for the environment than the best forms of hard rock metal mining. But "waste" policy says the opposite, waste is a "liability" for the consuming industry, mined material is subsidized.

Submission + - Samsung Battery Manufacturer's Warehouse Catches Fire (

retroworks writes: Reuters News reports that Samsung's SDI facility in Wuqing, Tianjin, China — the takeback facility responsible for recycling, among other things, the recalled Samsung Note 7 smartphones — has itself burst into flames. Nineteen fire trucks and 110 firefighters reportedly showed up to put out the blaze. The fire burst out in the area dedicated to managing scrap batteries and phones.

The same SDI subcontractor is set to start supplying lithium batteries for Samsung's upcoming flagship smartphone Galaxy S8 in the first quarter of this year. The S8 replaces the Galaxy Note 7 mode, which suffered a global recall last year due to battery defects. Electronics recycling factories are generally suffering increasing incidents of fire, as lithium batteries become exposed to oxygen during the recycling process.

Comment Re:sad loss (Score 2) 53

Back in 2006 or 2007, he identified Journalists as way behind students (who were behind random chimpanzees) in correctly answering questions about "third world". Journalists have been living in 1970 when it comes to "lesser developed countries", apparently blowback to their profession from decades of "if it bleeds, it leads". I had my kids all watch his vids while in high school, there was no one like him.

Comment "Show Me the CarFax" Model (Score 1) 64

The authenticators are to be paid by the Sellers, not by ebay or the buyers. It's offering the service to someone who already owns the piece and wants to sell it, and presumably is willing to take the risk that what they are selling isn't faked, in order to give buyers more confidence. This "certification model" paid for by the businesses in the hopes that enough will adapt it and it will become mandatory "professional licensing". Ebay is already in that business, via "Powerseller" status.

It appears too general. If I pay to ask ebay to "certify" that a photo I took of a duck was really taken by me, does ebay turn down the money, or admit that they have no expert qualified to determine it was my duck photo.

Comment Twitter Crowd Sourcing Future AI (Score 1) 74

My assumption is that we are all unconsciously writing the code for a future Artificial Intelligence bot, through twitter, slashdot, other comment fields. We don't know how it will be distilled, filtered, and assembled into a greater intelligence any more than a termite knows whose house it is eating.

Comment Re:Some thoughts (Score 1) 26

Yep. Now that Uber has provided it to Boston Police, etc., "anonymized", it will be difficult to put the genie back in the bottle. Expect 3. Court Subpoenas for non-anonymized data. Uber should develop a plan to dump false or trivial data in if subpoenaed. Deleting data could be a legal violation of the subpoena. Intentionally mixing in random false data points before a subpoena is issued should be legal.

Comment Taiwanese Invention, Not Cupertino (Score 1) 35

The story I had always heard from friends in Taipei's Tech Sector was that Apple had long subcontracted the iPod production to Taiwan (Hon Hoi Precision Tech Group, owned by Terry Gou, aka Foxconn) and that the display geeks in Taiwan - who had been trying to improve touch screens for ATM machines moving from CRT to LCD - introduced it in the model. According to my pals (now retired) Apple realized how important the multi device implications could be and hired an insider from the Taiwan shop to move to a Vancouver subcontractor.

The touch screen technology, according to Taipei geeks, was originally German origin, but the German company had never succeeded in finding a profitable use for it, and they had bought it in a bankruptcy and tried applying it to ATM displays. This article doesn't prove this story, but it does appear to fit the iPod demo story. Maybe someone at /. knows the German company.

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