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Comment Re:Can't turn, can't climb, can't run (Score 1) 343

That flyaway cost presupposes the numbers ordered will hold and every indication at the moment is that they won't.

It's disingenuous at best to avoid amortising the development cost of the aircraft across the numbers actually sold.

On the bright side, the USA will be so busying paying for this boondoggle that they won't be able to afford to go to war with anyone for a while.

Comment Re:What a joke... (Score 1) 113

"I could totally see shipping trucks being an ideal situation for electric"

Any kind of drayage work would be an ideal EV truck solution - and being a truck chassis you can hang a _lot_ more battery on the thing.

For long-haul transport regular IC (no hybrid) is still likely to be the most cost-effective solution.

Comment Re:weight (was: Re:Meh) (Score 1) 113

"Model S is SIGNIFICANTLY larger than a BMW M3, Mercedes C or Audi A4."

What counts is internal space. I've been in some large cars which are ridiculously cramped inside (Jgauar XJ12 being a classic example)

When comparing mass of a EV vs IC vehicle, you're not comparing apples with apples.

Acceleration is different as all the power and torque is available from stationary

Milage isn't affected nearly as much in a EV because mass doesn't affect rolling resistance much and acceleration energy losses are offset by braking regeneration gains.

Whilst not a Tesla, I took a Leaf for a few days test drive and found that the there was virtually no difference in overall round trip energy consumption between 2 routes to work - one of 11 miles with a 400 foot climb and descent in it over narrow and winding english lanes and the other of 16 miles with under 50 feet of elevation change over much straighter, wider roads (less braking and acceleration required. Both routes take about 30 minutes), with a 200 foot climb on the last mile for both routes.

Contrast that with a 2 litre petrol Nissan which uses 20% more fuel on the shorter route than the longer one (that 400 foot climb is a hogback type ridge)

The practical effect is that route planning is less critical for commuting. For blasting down freeways at 70+mph you're going to be expending most of your energy punching through the air but below 55mph the difference is strongly around regeneration.

Once you hit stop/start traffic or "urban mum runs" then any efficiency you might get from an IC engine goes out the window, especially for the latter cases when the engine barely gets a chance to start warming up. In such cases if you can get 1/2 to 1/4 of the claimed milage you're doing well - but this kind of operation doesn't affect EV efficiency at all.

Comment WERE (Score 1) 110

"The New Zealand intelligence services were not themselves allowed to spy on Fullman, who was a New Zealand citizen"

When this stuff started coming out, the prime minister of New Zealand rammed through legislation making it retroactively legal for the intelligence services to spy on citizens - mainly because they were caught redhanded directly doing so without even bothering to go through the PRISM facade.

(Disclosure: I'm from NZ but haven't lived there for nearly 20 years as I was becoming more and more unhappy about the deepseated corruption and cronyism I kept uncovering)

New Zealand has an interesting facade of "clean, green and honest" - none of these 3 claims are true, but those in charge have been selling the Kool Aid for so long that the population believes it and tends to react violently towards those who try to show the truth. The government is aided and abbetted by a very pliable media (New Zealand does not have a free press. Negative stories about companies or influential individuals are usually killed by threats of defamation litigation using laws heavily biased in favour of the claimant - effectively NZ defamation law turns the presumption of innocence on its head)

The Internet makes it harder and harder for things to be covered up and more people are becoming uncomfortable about the situation but there is a very strong culture of compliance with authority and "don't rock the boat". This is what allows corruption to spread from the top down until the entire edifice is rotten. The situation is not helped by the factor that the only legal definition of corrupt behaviour in New Zealand is "Bribery". Cronyism, influence peddling and all the other OECD definitions are rife, but "if it's not illegal then it's OK"

Non-kiwis might do well to look at e2nz.org and locals might want to look at laudafinem.com

Comment Re:They disrupeed our plans! We want blood! (Score 1) 131

"Releasing an IP address (which is not identifying information as we all know)"

Even if it's not directly identifying information, it can be used to derive the identity of the poster - and that is enough ot make disclosure without a court order problematic in a lot of jurisdictions.

This is the same connundrum that releasing anonymised data comes with - if you have enough such datasets you can use to very accurately identify people. Think about the incentive that insurers have to do that kind of analysis on anonymised medical data.

Comment Re: Verdict sound legitimate (Score 1) 162

The thing about GPL is that it's a License - if you don't comply with it, then it's a simple copyright violation case.

It's also easy to comply with (open your source)

The vast majority of GPL cases have never hit court because it's been far more blatant cases (such as stealing busybox) and once the respondent's lawyers realised that if they argued the GPL wasn't enforceable, they'd then be fighting a copyright violation case - which in most cases would be open and shut with larger penalties because they'd already admitted using the code.

This case is more subtle and from the look of it the courts haven't allowed sufficient discovery to be done. VMware probably learned lessons from Fortinet being taken down over its "proprietary operating system" fiasco.

This will go to appeal and I doubt the higher courts will rule against discovery.

Comment Re:In Germany, lights work that way (Score 1) 203

In some countries there's a countdown timer showing how much longer the light will stay green (or red)

In Yangon it starts flashing amber when there's less than 10 seconds green left.

It's interesting because it really does seem to calm people down if they know long they have to wait - and slow them down instead of attempting to race to a green light they might or might not make before it changes.

Unfortunately the rest of the time, the driving can best be described as "scrummage" descending to "rucking"

Comment Re:Carrying cash has been a crime for a century (Score 1) 276

The concept of duress passwords has been around for a long time and they do exist on phones if you care to set them up.

30 years ago access cards we had as telco employees had secondary duress codes. If you entered them the doors will still open, but red lights would be flashing in the security centre.

After one "unfortunate incident", it was decided that using the codes would open doors you wouldn't normally get through - not that it mattered if the attackers had mugged the cleaning staff as their cards opened everything and tended not to need codes.

Comment Re:Carrying cash has been a crime for a century (Score 1) 276

"And they in turn can choose to tell you, too, to fuck right off. It's the prerogative of a border agent"

In general it is not permissible for border agents to refuse entry to a citizen of the country he is entering.(*)

This was a Canadian, entering Canada, coming up against canadian border agents.

(*) There are some countries like this, but we tend to call those "repressive regiemes", not "western democracies"

Comment Re:Denormalize (Score 1) 674

"It worked... never mind that the company needed to run like, I don't remember, a dozen web servers to make that shit run when all that was truly required (if the system had been built properly) was one server for the application and one for the database."

"It runs - badly" is not the same as "it works"

Anyway if you understand the calls, etc you should be able to get a nice 6-figure lumpsum payout for making the system run well. Pitch yourself as a contractor.

Comment Re:Racially discrimitory? (Score 2) 108

"Also, the highest crime areas (you know, the areas we tell our kids not to wander to?) are black."

No, the highest crime areas (anywhere in the world) are poor. Skin colour doesn't enter into that part.

If you start looking into the reasons why disproportionate ratios of the black population are poor then it's easy to see the systemic discrimination across the board which shows the Jim Crow laws might be gone, but Jim Crow attitudes still lurk just under the surface.

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