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Comment germanium junctions have 0.2V voltage drop (Score 1) 66

Indeed, I seem to recall that a germanium diode had a ~0.2V forward voltage drop which made them better in rectifiers and such than the silicon diodes with ~0.6V. At high currents, that voltage drop means less power wasted by the device. With transistors, that means a much lower base open voltage, though I don't remember exactly why or if that was useful...

Comment AWD is faster off the line (Score 1) 790

most all wheel drive cars are slower off the line than their two wheel drive counterparts.

That's plain wrong. All else being equal, AWD is always faster off the line because you are usually traction limited at launch, and AWD allows you to hook up all your tires when you dump the clutch. They are slower afterwards because of the extra weight and drivetrain losses, but no doubt they can take off like a bat outta hell from a full stop.


Submission + - Panasonic begins to lock out third party batteries ( 1

OhMyBattery writes: The latest firmware updated for Panasonic digital cameras contains one single improvement: it locks out the ability to use "non-genuine Panasonic" batteries. It does so for safety reasons, it says. It seems to indicate that this is going to be the norm for all new Panasonic digital cameras.

From the release: "Panasonic Digital Still Cameras now include a technology that can identify a genuine Panasonic battery. For the protection of our customers Panasonic developed this technology after it was discovered that some aftermarket 3rd party batteries do not meet the rigid safety standards Panasonic uses."

The firmware warning is quite clear as to what it does: "After this firmware update your Panasonic Digital Camera cannot be operated by 3rd party batteries (non genuine Panasonic batteries)."

Comment do not send my data overseas (Score 1) 136

All the laws about mandating electronic records need a provision that forbids all entities that handle the data from "exporting" it overseas in any way. Whether that is storage or processing or analysis, do not send my data overseas. Period. The same standard should be retroactively applied to bank records, credit data and the like.

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