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Comment What about mechanical failure? (Score 1) 167

I'm curious as to how they handle various types of mechanical failure - what does the car do if:

  • tire flat
  • tire blowout
  • brake failure
  • power steering failure (I had a hydraulic hose pop once in my F350... very tough to steer!)
  • engine overheat / low oil pressure
  • Unexpected out-of-fuel (fuel tank puncture / unreported battery failure) - does the car attempt to get to the shoulder in an orderly fashion?
  • occupant emergency - passenger may just want to pull over suddenly for whatever reason (nausea, or window gets broken and rain is pouring in at 50mph, etc)

In addition, do these cars handle unexpected road conditions:

  • Unannounced road closures/detours
  • Tree blocking part or all of roadway
  • Large sinkhole ruins part of all of roadway
  • Potholes
  • Road maintenance requiring speed reduction (chip&seal)
  • Dirt or gravel road

Comment Re:Warning Shot (Score 1) 148

after all, most people already think "definitely" is spelled "definately"

I'm afraid that I most commonly see "definitely" written as "defiantly", which leads to some strange initial interpretations before I fix things up:

"I am defiantly hungry!"

Comment Re:This is one thing I love about it (Score 1) 544

I prefer manuals, but my wife has had a CVT automobile for 9 years now and absolutely loves it - even when driving she dislikes the variance in acceleration due to gear shifting (and definitely hates it as a passenger!).

Given that the Tesla is out of our price range, when she was recently car shopping to replace her aging car, she decided he needed another CVT car - and the only one she could find that she liked was the same she had, and luckily found one with only 30k miles on it

Comment Re:Some fixtures need incandescent (Score 1) 767

When we used mercury thermometers (which were replaced by somewhat safer alcohol-based or spirit thermometers), you shoved them in the kid's butt until they were old enough to safely have them in their mouth. Then, you acted like a good parent and watched over your child until the reading was complete.

Are you watching your kids - probably older ones - as they run around the house and roughhouse and potentially knock over lamps? Probably less than you were watching that kid who needed a temperature read.

Comment Re:Never be popular. (Score 1) 293

And if you have a battery pack large enough to provide the duration of use you'd need for a truck... Well there's your weight limit right there.

Right, because there's nothing heavy in the gas/diesel truck, is there.

Oh, wait... a diesel engine weighs over1,000 pounds - not counting accessories?

I'm sure replacing that would leave a bit of room in the budget for batteries....

Comment Re:More details please (Score 1) 175

Peru is at the same longitude as the Eastern US. I'd guess that using an Eastern US address to get service would get you assigned to a satellite that's useful up and down the globe from there.

I seem to remember back when I had service that I lost my line-of-sight due to vegetation encroachment, and I pointed my dish at a different satellite - one that was in a different longitudinal band; I'm pretty sure I still had service. I know this will work with Dish TV as I've done it within better memory (there must be a major alpha particle source near my desk as my memory is getting corrupted more and more quickly...).

Comment Re:More details please (Score 1) 175

First you need to mention where you are exactly. Internet service over satellite is usually sold through local providers. Furthermore, different satellites have different coverage areas.

As long as you can see a satellite in geostationary orbit, you should be able to get service one way or another - you may need to purchase the service in USA and then set it up yourself, but that's pretty simple. If you've got a remote research station, my guess is there's tougher things involved in your existence.

Forth, above 70C latitude it is not possible to provide Internet over satellite with geostationary orbit since there isn't enough visibility of the satellite on the horizon

People still use Forth? ;)
If you'll consult a map of South America, you'll find that it is entirely above the Antarctic Circle - it doesn't even touch 60S. Still, depending on your location, even 50S could cause issues if you've got a hill to your north.

Comment High latency is unavoidable; my experience (Score 1) 175

Considering that geostationary orbits are 22,236 miles above the equator, that's your minimum distance to the satellite. If you're as far south as the Tropic of Capricorn (23.5 south), the satellite is a minimum of 22,906 miles away - assuming that it's at the same longitude that you are. If you're a ways off east or west, the distance to the satellite may be higher... so let's go with 23,000 miles - one way to the satellite.

To calculate your round-trip ping, realize that your ping packet has to travel:
  - your station to the satellite (23k mi)
  - satellite to network link (my guess is that's in North America, probably a minimum of 32 north; this is definitely over 23k mi)
  - network link to ultimate destination ( - call this 10ms, though it'll be noise in the end
  - google back to net link - 10ms
  - net link to satellite (23k+ mi)
  - satellite to your station (23k+ mi)

So what's that? 20ms + a minimum of 92k mi at 186k mi/sec... this will give you a minimum of 520msec ping round trips.

I used to have satellite up/down in Northern California - about 39N120W (2002-2006) via StarBand (don't know if they're around or not and too lazy to check)... I don't think I ever saw a ping rtt below 650ms anywhere in the net.

My experience with it at the time was that it was fine for casual use... click a link, a second later you had the page. It streamed fine at its given capacity (768k at the time). Interactive use was horrible, I had to replicate part of a testing lab at my location to be able to do development because typing remotely to a console was an exercise in predictive error correction. Upload was horrible at the time, I think it was 64kbps. That's plenty for web surfing, but sending binaries of any sort is prohibitive.

The high latency of course makes something like interactive gaming very challenging. Of course, I've seeing people playing WoW from OZ or South Pacific islands at 1500ms ping, so it's possible, but you do need to realize what you're getting into.

I assume that data rates have improved; of course, data files have increased as well.

Don't forget also that there are some serious data caps. StarBand at the time used a leakybucket approach; if you empty your bucket, you're not shut off, but if you keep pulling data non-stop, at some point you'll be limited to the resupply rate (which was 64kbps at the time....).

Given that you're going to be completely remote and far from any other possible internet connection, the caveats probably don't affect you - you don't have a choice. Satellite *will* work, but understand what you get.

Comment I claim it's just bogus statistics (Score 1) 105

Because Glassdoor only includes companies where at least 50 engineers have submitted salaries

It's my understanding that Juniper does pay pretty well overall. However, I doubt it's pay advantage is so huge - I'm guessing that there's a different sort of person submitting salaries at Juniper (maybe bored long timers ;)) vs somewhere like Facebook...

Comment Re:Exaggerates? (Score 2) 232

I can almost verify this; I was riding along one day (2003 BMW K1200GT) and suddenly my pant leg was saturated with cold fluid.
I quickly pulled over, and yep, it was gasoline... luckily, luiquid form and rapidly evaporating without a ready ignition source.
The bike has never been in an accident, it's been well taken care of - but the fuel lines were obviously not up to the task of carrying gasoline!

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