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Comment Re:Meh... (Score 1) 365

Put it in gear to hold on a slope when your handbrake is broken is only going to work on the flat or very slight slope. Enough incline and the engine will turn over, just like when you bump start a car. On a significant slope it will move immediately but on a more modest slope it will move slowly was the compressed air in the cylinders leaks past the piston rings. Over an hour or so you car may roll several meters. Using a choc block under the wheels is a good idea in his case.

Comment Re:The devil you know (Score 1) 312

Actually the Chinese government are pretty open about it. The non-Chinese company I worked for in China had VPN connections to a free country and also to the USA. They were told they would be expected to install government supplied equipment on their internal network so the government could properly monitor their communications. It had not happen yet as of when I left their employ.

Comment Not a hybrid and not for everyone (Score 1) 55

The article states that the Maxwell X plane is a hybrid and goes on to detail it is electric propulsion and battery powered. That doesn't sound like a hybrid to me. I can only guess they either used the term in error or were think of future concepts.

Interesting I would guess pure electric aircraft make up the majority if you include hobby quadcopters in that definition. I mention that as I think the takeaway from the article is that electric aircraft are practical in some niche areas and NASA's work will widen those niches. The changes need for EV cars to replace ICE are evolutions in batteries and is already close to the tipping point, but It is going to take some truly impressive breakthrough in battery technology before your will see traditional commercial jets like the A320, 737, 767 or A380 replaced. My guess we are are years, not decades, away from cars going all electric but for aircraft we are probably still talking decades.

Comment What about the writer at IMDB (Score 1) 160

I note it is missing from IMDB and figured I could add it but occurs to me that there is issues with entering the writer's details. IMDB will assume the writer is a person. I guess the details of the computer that wrote the script could be entered. The date of birth or gender could get interesting. I think this is increasingly going to be an issue, Human writers could be upset that a machine is getting the same status, Until the machines reach the status of being sentient then maybe they shouldn't be listed in databases the same way as people?

It's funny how the simple act of creating an IMDB entry now has ethical overtones!

Comment Re:Why doesn't Google help defend the victims? (Score 2) 108

Surely there is no legal reason why Google can not provide support for a developer being attacked for using Google services, and every commercial reason to support the developer. If I was running Google I would be putting some of my best lawyers at the developers disposal at no cost to the developer. If the troll wins against this developer then I assume they would then go after every successful app at Play Store which would have a follow on effect on Play Store in general.

Comment Two common mistakes in posts here (Score 1) 271

Firstly the laws around bicycles and ebike are not the same in every country, state and city. Just because the law where you are restricts you in some way that does not make it true for people living elsewhere. The legal/practical viability of ebikes is going to vary from place to place.

Secondly many posters are thinking of ebikes as only bicycles with a small motor added, which is the most common type in Western cities but most ebikes in China, which the original article refers to, do not have peddles, they are scooter styled. If you saw one in a western city you would likely assume that it was a gas power Vespa or similar, not an ebike. The reason the scooter format is more common that the bicycle style is the load carrying capacity, you can put you shopping on the deck in front of the seat and more in the compartment under the seat. Of course the load carrying capabilities do get a abused in China. Often saw four people on one and loads that were oversized. Watched one girl transporting a wardrobe fall off when the wardrobe, laid horizontally over the desk, dug into the ground on a corner.

Comment Re:"the ban on motorcyle (s?) " (Score 1) 271

Try China where they will ride them anywhere and I mean anywhere they can physically ride to and feel they have the need. I often saw them being ridden in shopping malls. This also included motorcycles. But then again I saw small trucks using a pedestrian tunnel under a motorway. Driving and riding in a country with no apparent enforcement of even the most basic rules was both liberating and scary at the same time.

Comment Re:A few changes and the Chinese eBikes would be O (Score 1) 271

About as safe as falling off at 20mph and landing under a car doing 35mph? I watched a good friend of mine be killed by a car, she was riding at less than 5kph when the car drove over her. What's your point? I have been riding motorcycles since 1974 and all those years I have never felt the desire or need to throw my self off. My normal commute is on a VTR1000, 100KW, top speed 280kph. When commuting I do so at the same speed as the traffic when it is moving, and about 20kph when passing stationary traffic. In China they have physically separate lanes for the eBikes so the 35kph is fine as there is no cars to deal with. With most western cities there are a few token bike lanes but much of the time you share with cars so matching their speed helps. I would not recommend 100KW for commuting, but I would recommend enough power to say safe in the realities of typical cites.

If you are really worried about a safe commute I think telecommuting might be your best option.

Comment Re:A few changes and the Chinese eBikes would be O (Score 1) 271

Well the 20mph limit is a regional thing but yes it is relevant. We use a 300W limit so most existing Chinese eBike would be treated as motorcycles here anyway but at 20mph they have all the same risks that bicycle suffer from with not being able to join the other faster traffic. In many countries you could ride them with a car licence. The eBikes I rode had fat scooter tires and disk brakes were becoming common. Basically my argument is they should be up spec'd to match a typical 50cc scooter which is an ideal transport option in a city. The eBike can have all the advantages of a 50cc scooter without the high cost and all the hassles of gas stations and complicated maintenance etc.

Comment A few changes and the Chinese eBikes would be OK (Score 5, Interesting) 271

Having used eBikes for a daily commute in China I think they are a great technology, practical and affordable. The average price for an eBike was about USD $400 when I lived there a couple of years ago. Current eBikes outside of China appear to be grossly over priced. There are a few changes need if they wish to sell outside of China. The build quality needs to improve, quite doable. The speed restrictions need removed, typically 35kph which is too slow in cities outside China, 55kph (35mph) should make them able to mix with cars safely in cites. They currently have 500W motors which would probably need boosted to 750W-1KW for flat cites and 2-3KW for hilly cities.

Comment Re:Wireless charging is a pain (Score 1) 115

The key to QI charging is to buy decent multi-coil chargers, like the Tylt Vu, for your most common charging locations. They charge reliably regardless of alignment. I use them beside the bed and on my office desk. I have of a few cheap chargers scattered around the house but you do have to place your phone on those ones just right.

Comment Will they stop going backwards? (Score 5, Interesting) 115

Prior to the Nexus 6P I had brought each new model since the Nexus One but I have stuck with the Nexus 6 as the 6P was a step backwards. I see no need for a fingerprint reader, what real world advantage does it offer? From what I see it weakens security by opening a new attack vector. On the other hand I see QI charging as one of the best things to happen to phones in recent years, no more mucking around vs risking a flat battery. Removing QI from the 6P was a deal breaker for me.

The linked article does feel like a fluff piece, lacking anything worth remembering.

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