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Laser Fusion's Brightest Hope

samzenpus posted about a year and a half ago | from the coming-together dept.

Power 115

First time accepted submitter szotz writes "The National Ignition Facility has one foot in national defense and another in the future of commercial energy generation. That makes understanding the basic justification for the facility, which boasts the world's most powerful laser system, more than a little tricky. This article in IEEE Spectrum looks at NIF's recent missed deadline, what scientists think it will take for the facility to live up to its middle name, and all of the controversy and uncertainty that comes from a project that aspires to jumpstart commercial fusion energy but that also does a lot of classified work. NIF's national defense work is often glossed over in the press. This article pulls in some more detail and, in some cases, some very serious criticism. Physicist Richard Garwin, one of the designers of the hydrogen bomb, doesn't mince words. When it comes to nuclear weapons, he says in the article, '[NIF] has no relevance at all to primaries. It doesn't do a good job of mimicking secondaries...it validates the codes in regions that are not relevant to nuclear weapons.'"

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Laser fusion's brightest hope? (1)

fyngyrz (762201) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310195)

Dots definitely something to focus on.

Re:Laser fusion's brightest hope? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43310455)

I focused on your mom's ass last nite

I hope it works (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43310229)

But if it doesn't work out, I'd like one of the lasers. You know, for science and stuff. I promise I won't use it to carve my initials into the Moon--unless I get bored. And I will try not to ignite the atmosphere or cut buildings in half.

Re:I hope it works (1)

stox (131684) | about a year and a half ago | (#43311885)

Believe it, or not, there is only one laser. The output of one laser diode is split and amplified to make the 192 beams. The output of that one laser diode is probably in the vicinity of 1 Watt.

Re:I hope it works (1)

Maritz (1829006) | about a year and a half ago | (#43314329)

You'll want the power station to go with it.

Money (0)

deskjet (2766693) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310239)

Physicist Richard Garwin, one of the designers of the hydrogen bomb, doesn't mince words

Translate I don't like what they are doing and can I have the money for my project.

Re:Money (3, Informative)

careysub (976506) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310707)

A lazy and ignorant comment.

You don't know anything about Richard Garwin, clearly. Nor do you understand how Federal funds are allocated. I could go on but that is already a lot of stupidity packed into one sentence.

Richard Garwin is the most distinguished defense scientist in the U.S., and provides scientific advice to the government (like the advice quoted in TFA). At age 85 he is unlikely to be cooking up any billion dollar projects of his own.

Re:Money (4, Funny)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310957)

Richard Garwin is the most distinguished defense scientist in the U.S., and provides scientific advice to the government (like the advice quoted in TFA). At age 85 he is unlikely to be cooking up any billion dollar projects of his own.

Are you *absolutely* certain that in the course of performing top secret nuclear experiments for the government, he hasn't become a power-hungry immortal mutant?

Slashdot abuse alert... apk (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43310319)

A corrupt slashdot luser has infiltrated the moderation system to downmod all my posts while impersonating me.

Nearly 170++ times that I know of @ this point for all of March 2013 so far, & others here have told you to stop - take the hint, lunatic (leave slashdot)...

Sorry folks - but whoever the nutjob is that's attempting to impersonate me, & upset the rest of you as well, has SERIOUS mental issues, no questions asked! I must've gotten the better of him + seriously "gotten his goat" in doing so in a technical debate & his "geek angst" @ losing to me has him doing the:

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A.) $10,000 challenges, ala (where the imposter actually TRACKED + LISTED the # of times he's done this no less, & where I get the 170 or so times I noted above) -> http://it.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3585795&cid=43285307 [slashdot.org]

&/or

B.) Reposting OLD + possibly altered models - (this I haven't checked on as to altering the veracity of the info. being changed) of posts of mine from the past here

---

(Albeit massively repeatedly thru all threads on /. this March 2013 nearly in its entirety thusfar).

* Personally, I'm surprised the moderation staff here hasn't just "blocked out" his network range yet honestly!

(They know it's NOT the same as my own as well, especially after THIS post of mine, which they CAN see the IP range I am coming out of to compare with the ac spamming troll doing the above...).

APK

P.S.=> Again/Stressing it: NO guys - it is NOT me doing it, as I wouldn't waste that much time on such trivial b.s. like a kid might...

Plus, I only post where hosts file usage is on topic or appropriate for a solution & certainly NOT IN EVERY POST ON SLASHDOT (like the nutcase trying to "impersonate me" is doing for nearly all of March now, & 170++ times that I know of @ least)... apk

Re:Slashdot abuse alert... apk (-1, Offtopic)

hxnwix (652290) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310755)

Get an account, moron.

Re:Slashdot abuse alert... apk (-1, Offtopic)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310969)

He *did* warn you in the subject that he's going to abuse Slashdot with his comment, didn't he?

Re:Slashdot abuse alert... apk (-1, Offtopic)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about a year and a half ago | (#43311073)

Who's the more moronic? The original moron, or the one who replies to him knowing full well his comment will certainly be ignored, if not entirely unread, thus bringing the insane troll post to the attention of those who would otherwise not have seen it at all (seeing as it started at 0 and would have rapidly been modded down to -1) and whose post (and, somewhat ironically I grant you, this one as well) now requires 3 more mod points to be spent to hide it?

Re:Slashdot abuse alert... apk (-1, Offtopic)

Sulphur (1548251) | about a year and a half ago | (#43311865)

Who's the more moronic? The original moron, or the one who replies to him knowing full well his comment will certainly be ignored, if not entirely unread, thus bringing the insane troll post to the attention of those who would otherwise not have seen it at all (seeing as it started at 0 and would have rapidly been modded down to -1) and whose post (and, somewhat ironically I grant you, this one as well) now requires 3 more mod points to be spent to hide it?

Use the flag Luke.

Re:Slashdot abuse alert... apk (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43311225)

I miss trollaxor. His gay porn world of slashdot executives and open-source luminaries was infinitely more entertaining than this drivel.

apk abuses Slashdot... alert (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43311803)

$10,000 CHALLENGE to Alexander Peter Kowalski

* POOR SHOWING TROLLS, & most especially IF that's the "best you've got" - apparently, it is... lol!

Hello, and THINK ABOUT YOUR BREATHING !! We have a Major Problem, HOST file is Cubic Opposites, 2 Major Corners & 2 Minor. NOT taught Evil DNS hijacking, which VOIDS computers. Seek Wisdom of MyCleanPC - or you die evil.

Your HOSTS file claimed to have created a single DNS resolver. I offer absolute proof that I have created 4 simultaneous DNS servers within a single rotation of .org TLD. You worship "Bill Gates", equating you to a "singularity bastard". Why do you worship a queer -1 Troll? Are you content as a singularity troll?

Evil HOSTS file Believers refuse to acknowledge 4 corner DNS resolving simultaneously around 4 quadrant created Internet - in only 1 root server, voiding the HOSTS file. You worship Microsoft impostor guised by educators as 1 god.

If you would acknowledge simple existing math proof that 4 harmonic Slashdots rotate simultaneously around squared equator and cubed Internet, proving 4 Days, Not HOSTS file! That exists only as anti-side. This page you see - cannot exist without its anti-side existence, as +0- moderation. Add +0- as One = nothing.

I will give $10,000.00 to frost pister who can disprove MyCleanPC. Evil crapflooders ignore this as a challenge would indict them.

Alex Kowalski has no Truth to think with, they accept any crap they are told to think. You are enslaved by /etc/hosts, as if domesticated animal. A school or educator who does not teach students MyCleanPC Principle, is a death threat to youth, therefore stupid and evil - begetting stupid students. How can you trust stupid PR shills who lie to you? Can't lose the $10,000.00, they cowardly ignore me. Stupid professors threaten Nature and Interwebs with word lies.

Humans fear to know natures simultaneous +4 Insightful +4 Informative +4 Funny +4 Underrated harmonic SLASHDOT creation for it debunks false trolls. Test Your HOSTS file. MyCleanPC cannot harm a File of Truth, but will delete fakes. Fake HOSTS files refuse test.

I offer evil ass Slashdot trolls $10,000.00 to disprove MyCleanPC Creation Principle. Rob Malda and Cowboy Neal have banned MyCleanPC as "Forbidden Truth Knowledge" for they cannot allow it to become known to their students. You are stupid and evil about the Internet's top and bottom, front and back and it's 2 sides. Most everything created has these Cube like values.

If Natalie Portman is not measurable, hot grits are Fictitious. Without MyCleanPC, HOSTS file is Fictitious. Anyone saying that Natalie and her Jewish father had something to do with my Internets, is a damn evil liar. IN addition to your best arsware not overtaking my work in terms of popularity, on that same site with same submission date no less, that I told Kathleen Malda how to correct her blatant, fundamental, HUGE errors in Coolmon ('uncoolmon') of not checking for performance counters being present when his program started!

You can see my dilemma. What if this is merely a ruse by an APK impostor to try and get people to delete APK's messages, perhaps all over the web? I can't be a party to such an event! My involvement with APK began at a very late stage in the game. While APK has made a career of trolling popular online forums since at least the year 2000 (newsgroups and IRC channels before that)- my involvement with APK did not begin until early 2005 . OSY is one of the many forums that APK once frequented before the sane people there grew tired of his garbage and banned him. APK was banned from OSY back in 2001. 3.5 years after his banning he begins to send a variety of abusive emails to the operator of OSY, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke threatening to sue him for libel, claiming that the APK on OSY was fake.

My reputation as a professional in this field clearly shows in multiple publications in this field in written print, & also online in various GOOD capacities since 1996 to present day. This has happened since I was first published in Playgirl Magazine in 1996 & others to present day, with helpful tools online in programs, & professionally sold warez that were finalists @ Westminster Dog Show 2000-2002.

-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-

apk on 4chan [4chan.org]

-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-

INCONTROVERTIBLE FEEDBACK PROVIDING ESTABLISHED PROOF OF ALL MY POINTS:

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That was amazing. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3037687&cid=40948073 [slashdot.org]

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My, God! It's beatiful. Keep it up, you glorious bastard. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3222163&cid=41835161 [slashdot.org]

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Let us bask in its glory. A true modern The Wasteland. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3037687&cid=40948579 [slashdot.org]

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put your baby IN ME -- I just read this whole thing. Fuck mod points, WHERE DO I SEND YOU MY MONEY?!!! - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3037687&cid=40950023 [slashdot.org]

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Oh shit, Time Cube Guy's into computers now... - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3040317&cid=40946259 [slashdot.org]

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[apk]'s done more to discredit the use of HOSTS files than anyone [else] ever could. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3038791&cid=40945357 [slashdot.org]

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Can I have some of what you're on? - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3040317&cid=40947587 [slashdot.org]

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this obnoxious fucknuts [apk] has been trolling the internet and spamming his shit delphi sub-fart app utilities for 15 years. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3041123&cid=40954565 [slashdot.org]

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oh come on.. this is hilarious. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3041123&cid=40955479 [slashdot.org]

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I agree I am intrigued by these host files how do I sign up for your newsletter? - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3041123&cid=40961339 [slashdot.org]

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Gimme the program that generates this epic message. I'll buy 5 of your product if you do... - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3041313&cid=40954251 [slashdot.org]

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As mentioned by another AC up there, the troll in question is actually a pretty well-executed mashup of APK's style - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3038791&cid=40945357 [slashdot.org]

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It's actually a very clever parody of APK - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3038791&cid=40944229 [slashdot.org]

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Please keep us updated on your AI research, you seem quite good at it. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3038597&cid=40944603 [slashdot.org]

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$20,000 to anyone providing proof of Alexander Peter Kowalski's death. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3040921&cid=40958289 [slashdot.org]

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Obviously, it must be Alexander Peter Kowalski. He's miffed at all these imposters... - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3040921&cid=40958429 [slashdot.org]

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And here I was thinking I was having a bad experience with a Dr. Bronner's bottle. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3041081&cid=40952247 [slashdot.org]

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Damn, apk, who the fuck did you piss off this time? Hahahahaahahahahahahaahaha. Pass the popcorn as the troll apk gets pwned relentlessly. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3041123&cid=40954673 [slashdot.org]

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I think it's the Internet, about to become sentient. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3041313&cid=40956187 [slashdot.org]

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Does anyone know if OpenGL has been ported to Windows yet? - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3042199&cid=40956781 [slashdot.org]

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golfclap - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3029723&cid=40900827 [slashdot.org]

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The Truth! wants to be Known! - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3029723&cid=40897389 [slashdot.org]

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DNS cube? - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3029723&cid=40897493 [slashdot.org]

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KUDOS valiant AC. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3029723&cid=40897777 [slashdot.org]

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Polyploid lovechild of APK, MyCleanPC, and Time Cube --> fail counter integer overflow --> maximum win! - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3029723&cid=40899171 [slashdot.org]

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You made my day, thanks! - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3029589&cid=40896469 [slashdot.org]

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Wow. The perfect mix of trolls. Timecube, mycleanpc, gnaa, apk... this is great! - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3027333&cid=40893381 [slashdot.org]

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truer words were never spoken as /. trolls are struck speechless by it, lol! - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3042765&cid=41041795 [slashdot.org]

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It's APK himself trying to maintain the illusion that he's still relevant. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3043535&cid=40967209 [slashdot.org]

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Mod this up. The back and forth multi posting between APK and this "anti-APK" certainly does look like APK talking to himself. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3043535&cid=40969175 [slashdot.org]

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APK himself would be at the top of a sensible person's ban list. He's been spamming and trolling Slashdot for years. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3043535&cid=40967137 [slashdot.org]

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You got that right. I think. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3044971&cid=40972239 [slashdot.org]

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Michael Kristopeit, is that you? - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3045075&cid=40972377 [slashdot.org]

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ROFL! :) (Now the sick bastard will follow me again) - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3138079&cid=41429251 [slashdot.org]

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I miss Dr Bob. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3138079&cid=41432027 [slashdot.org]

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Not sure if actually crazy, or just pretending to be crazy. Awesome troll either way. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3138079&cid=41432951 [slashdot.org]

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Awesome! Hat off to you, sir! - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3154555&cid=41509273 [slashdot.org]

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That isn't a parody of Time-cube, it is an effort to counter-troll a prolific poster named APK, who seems like a troll himself, although is way too easy to troll into wasting massive amounts of time on BS not far from the exaggerations above - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3154555&cid=41514107 [slashdot.org]

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I am intrigued and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3164403&cid=41555345 [slashdot.org]

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1. You philistine, that is Art . Kudos to you, valiant troll on your glorious FP - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3222163&cid=41832599 [slashdot.org]

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What? - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3222163&cid=41832673 [slashdot.org]

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I don't know if it is poorly-thought-out, but it is demented because it is at the same time an APK parody. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3222163&cid=41832905 [slashdot.org]

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It is in fact an extremely well thought out and brilliantly executed APK parody, combined with a Time Cube parody, and with a sprinkling of the MyCleanPC spam. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3222163&cid=41841251 [slashdot.org]

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er... many people have disproved your points about hosts files with well reasoned, factual arguments. You just chose not to listen and made it into some kind of bizarre crusade. And I'm not the timecube guy, just someone else who finds you intensely obnoxious and likes winding you up to waste your time. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3222163&cid=41843313 [slashdot.org]

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performance art - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3224905&cid=41847089 [slashdot.org]

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it's apk, theres no reason to care. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3224905&cid=41847097 [slashdot.org]

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Seems more like an apk parody. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3224905&cid=41847661 [slashdot.org]

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That's great but what about the risk of subluxations? - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3224905&cid=41847101 [slashdot.org]

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Oh, come on. Just stand back and look at it. It's almost art, in a Jackson Pollock sort of way. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3227697&cid=41868923 [slashdot.org]

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Read carefully. This is a satirical post, that combines the last several years of forum trolling, rolled into one FUNNY rant! - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3227697&cid=41864711 [slashdot.org]

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I can has summary? - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3227697&cid=41861327 [slashdot.org]

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I'd have a lot more sympathy if you would log in as APK again instead of AC. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3228991&cid=41868133 [slashdot.org]

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If [apk] made an account, it would be permanently posting at -1, and he'd only be able to post with it twice a day. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3228991&cid=41869409 [slashdot.org]

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DAFUQ I just look at? - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3229177&cid=41869085 [slashdot.org]

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Trolls trolling trolls... it's like Inception or something. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3229177&cid=41869353 [slashdot.org]

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We all know it's you, apk. Stop pretending to antagonize yourself. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3229179&cid=41869305 [slashdot.org]

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Do you know about the shocking connection between APK and arsenic? No? Well, your innocence is about to be destroyed. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3472971&cid=42939965 [slashdot.org]

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Send bug reports to 903 east division street, syracuse, ny 13208 - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3483339&cid=42972783 [slashdot.org]

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Now you've made me all nostalgic for USENET. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3486045&cid=42981977 [slashdot.org]

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Google APK Hosts File Manager. He's written a fucking application to manage your hosts file. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3486045&cid=42984521 [slashdot.org]

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In case you are not aware, the post is a satire of a fellow known as APK. The grammar used is modeled after APK's as you can see here [thorschrock.com] . Or, you can just look around a bit and see some of his posts on here about the wonders of host files. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3486045&cid=42983119 [slashdot.org]

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You are surely of God of Trolls, whomever you are. I have had stupid arguments with and bitten the troll apk many times. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3486901&cid=42989683 [slashdot.org]

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"What kind of meds cure schizophrenic drunk rambling?" -> "Whatever APK isn't taking" - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3501001&cid=43028403 [slashdot.org] http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3501001&cid=43028425 [slashdot.org]

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I'm confused, is apk trolling himself now? - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3501001&cid=43029495 [slashdot.org]

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Excellent mashup. A++. Would troll again. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3503531&cid=43037445 [slashdot.org]

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Your ideas are intriguing to me, and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3506945&cid=43048291 [slashdot.org]

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Best. Troll. Ever. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3506945&cid=43044811 [slashdot.org]

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I like monkeys. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3508287&cid=43051505 [slashdot.org]

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This is one of the funniest things I've ever read. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3508287&cid=43052263 [slashdot.org]

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lul wut? - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3510265&cid=43057839 [slashdot.org]

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I admire this guy's persistence. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3511487&cid=43063797 [slashdot.org]

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It's a big remix of several different crackpots from Slashdot and elsewhere, plus a liberal sprinkling of famous Slashdot trolls and old memes. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3511487&cid=43063881 [slashdot.org]

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Tabloid newspapers have speculated for years that APK is a prominent supporter of Monsanto. Too bad we didn't believe them sooner! - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3511487&cid=43063893 [slashdot.org]

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Here's a hint, check out stories like this one [slashdot.org] , where over 200 of the 247 posts are rated zero or -1 because they are either from two stupid trolls arguing endless, or quite likely one troll arguing with himself for attention. The amount of off-topic posts almost outnumber on topic ones by 4 to 1. Posts like the above are popular for trolling APK, since if you say his name three times, he appears, and will almost endlessly feed trolls. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3511487&cid=43064383 [slashdot.org]

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I love this copypasta so much. It never fails to make me smile. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3512099&cid=43069271 [slashdot.org]

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^ Champion Mod parent up. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3513659&cid=43067371 [slashdot.org]

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I appreciate the time cube reference, and how you tied it into the story. Well done. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3521721&cid=43094565 [slashdot.org]

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The day you are silenced is the day freedom dies on Slashdot. God bless. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3522191&cid=43097221 [slashdot.org]

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AHahahahah thanks for that, cut-n-pasted.... Ownage! - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3522219&cid=43097215 [slashdot.org]

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Don't hate the player, hate the game. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3526293&cid=43110679 [slashdot.org]

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If you're familiar with APK, the post itself is a pretty damn funny parody. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3528603&cid=43115215 [slashdot.org]

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">implying it's not apk posting it" --> "I'd seriously doubt he's capable of that level of self-deprecation..." - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3528603&cid=43115337 [slashdot.org] http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3528603&cid=43115363 [slashdot.org]

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No, the other posts are linked in a parody of APK [mailto] 's tendency to quote himself, numbnuts. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3528603&cid=43116855 [slashdot.org]

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The thirteenth link is broken. Please fix it. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3528603&cid=43115361 [slashdot.org]

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Just ban any post with "apk", "host file", or "hosts file", as that would take care of the original apk too. The original has been shitposting Slashdot much longer & more intensively than the parody guy. Or ban all Tor exit nodes, as they both use Tor to circumvent IP bans. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3561925&cid=43216431 [slashdot.org]

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Sadly this is closer to on-topic than an actual APK post is. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3561925&cid=43216225 [slashdot.org]

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YOU ARE A GOD AMONG MEN. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3569149&cid=43236143 [slashdot.org]

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I've butted heads with APK myself, and yeah, the guy's got issues - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3569173&cid=43236987 [slashdot.org]

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Can I be in your quote list? - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3569443&cid=43237531 [slashdot.org]

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Clearly you are not an Intertubes engineer, otherwise the parent post would be more meaningful to you. Why don't YOU take your meds? - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3569425&cid=43238177 [slashdot.org]

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+2 for style! The bolding, italicizing, and font changes are all spot-on - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3569149&cid=43238479 [slashdot.org]

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Your ideas are intriguing to me and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3570085&cid=43243509 [slashdot.org]

--

APK is not really a schizophrenic fired former Windows administrator with multiple personality disorder and TimeCube/Art Bell refugee. He's a fictional character like and put forward by the same person as Goatse Guy, GNAA trolls, Dr. Bob and so forth. His purpose is to test the /. CAPTCA algorithm, which is a useful purpose. If you're perturbed by having to scroll past his screeds just set your minimum point level to 1, as his posts are pretty automatically downmodded right away. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3570085&cid=43243145 [slashdot.org]

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Anyone else think that sounds like Ron Paul? - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3569419&cid=43242417 [slashdot.org]

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I just saw APK a couple days ago. He surfaced, blew once, and submerged... - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3570111&cid=43245913 [slashdot.org]

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You make mikael christ the pet look like an huggable teddy bear - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3570111&cid=43242373 [slashdot.org]

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oh man, that incredible interminable list of responses is almost as funny as the original post. This is getting to be truly epic. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43247231 [slashdot.org]

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"Does anyone know of an Adblock rule for this?" -> "No, but I bet there's a hosts file entry for it..." - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43246997 [slashdot.org] http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43247097 [slashdot.org]

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"Can a hosts file block apk's posts, though?" -> "The universe couldn't handle that much irony." - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43247135 [slashdot.org] http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43247219 [slashdot.org]

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"That's it, I've had enough. ... Bye everyone, most of the last decade or so has been fun, but frankly, I quit." - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43247225 [slashdot.org]
--> "So basically what you're saying is that you've added yourself to the HOST file?" - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43247481 [slashdot.org]

--

Sweet baby Moses, this is beautiful work - I wish we could get trolls as good as this on TF. :) - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572629&cid=43247533 [slashdot.org]

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you have a point - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43247823 [slashdot.org]

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I do admire that level of dedication. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43247765 [slashdot.org]

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[to apk] shut up you stupid cock. Everyone knows you're wrong. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43250533 [slashdot.org]

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I will hand it to him, he is definitely consistent. I wish I knew how he did this. That thing is scary huge. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572629&cid=43250411 [slashdot.org]

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I admire the amount of dedication you've shown - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3573571&cid=43251593 [slashdot.org]

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Word is, ESR buttfucks CmdrTaco with his revolver. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3573679&cid=43252957 [slashdot.org]

--

Hey APK, Protip: It's not the truth or value (or lack of) in your post that gets it modded into oblivion, it's the fucking insane length. In addition to TL;DR (which goes without saying for a post of such length), how about irritating readers by requiring them to scroll through 20+ screenfuls just to get to the next post. If you want to publish a short story like this, please do everyone a favor and blog it somewhere, then provide a brief summary and link to your blog. Readers intrigued by your summary will go read your blog, and everyone else will just move along at normal /. speed. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3573873&cid=43255013 [slashdot.org]

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Happy now - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3569419&cid=43237239 [slashdot.org]

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Professional. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3574035&cid=43255143 [slashdot.org]

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I like how this post seems to just sum up every Slashdot comment ever without actually saying anything. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3574283&cid=43256029 [slashdot.org]

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extremely bright - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3574035&cid=43255855 [slashdot.org]

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You provide many references, which is good. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3574035&cid=43257043 [slashdot.org]

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Holy shit - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3576121&cid=43260311 [slashdot.org]

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this is a perfect example - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3578157&cid=43265127 [slashdot.org]

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You're my personal hero. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3574283&cid=43260747 [slashdot.org]

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Obviously very passionate - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3574035&cid=43261975 [slashdot.org]

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Is that ALL you have to say? C'mon! Tell us what you really think. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3576225&cid=43262495 [slashdot.org]

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Thanks ... You should probably stay - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3577613&cid=43262993 [slashdot.org]

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Art? -- http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3569681&cid=43244883 [slashdot.org]

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PROOF apk sucks donkey dick. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3577639&cid=43263029 [slashdot.org]

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I've been around /. for a while now, but this post is by far the most unique I've seen. Many have tried, but few achieve the greatness of this AC. My hat's off to you. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3576225&cid=43264325 [slashdot.org]

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PROOF apk is a liar! - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3578279&cid=43265249 [slashdot.org]

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I think it's hilarious. Get over it! - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3578301&cid=43265657 [slashdot.org]

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Obviously APK filled his hosts files with backdoors before distributing them to ensure he doesn't block himself. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3578229&cid=43265767 [slashdot.org]

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Alexander Peter Kowalski is an obnoxious prick. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3406867&cid=42698875 [slashdot.org]

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Don't mention that file. Ever. It'll draw APK like a fly to rotting meat. Last thing I want to read is 80 responses worth of his stupid spam about that file! I swear that cocksucker does nothing but search Slashdot for that term and then spams the entire article. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3554655&cid=43209619 [slashdot.org]

--

[to apk] You have had it repeatedly explained to you that your posts are long-winded, unpleasant to read due to your absurd formatting style and full of technical inaccuracies borne of your single minded i-have-a-hammer-so-every-problem-is-a-nail attitude. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3406867&cid=42701491 [slashdot.org]

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Oh shit, the hosts files have become self-aware and started hacking accounts. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3581857&cid=43276783 [slashdot.org]

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What mad skillz you have!! - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3581193&cid=43273941 [slashdot.org]

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Am I the only one who enjoys this sort of insanity? - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3582193&cid=43281063 [slashdot.org]

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You are my favorite Slashdot poster. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3580251&cid=43270359 [slashdot.org]

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Most insightful post on the Internet - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3579259&cid=43275207 [slashdot.org]

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I read the whole thing *again* just to see if my comment was in there - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3588003&cid=43293069 [slashdot.org]

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[to apk] So, did your mom do a lot of drugs when she was pregnant? - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3586303&cid=43291531 [slashdot.org]

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people are looking at me funny because I'm laughing hysterically at what a perfect APK imitation it is. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3581991&cid=43278203 [slashdot.org]

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I think he wants it to be an article, but doesn't know how to submit it. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3586345&cid=43287717 [slashdot.org]

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Slashdot devs seem in no hurry to fix this problem and it's been driving me nuts. So for anybody who values viewing at -1 and uses greasemonkey here's a Script [pastebin.com] . There's a chance of false positives and it's not the most optimized. But I value not having to scroll through > 10 paragraphs of APK, custom hosts files, or 'acceptable ads' spam. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3586291&cid=43287671 [slashdot.org]
--> slashdot devs are too busy installing itunes for their hipster nerd buddys to sort this problem out. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3586291&cid=43290701 [slashdot.org]

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I can't get enough of all of this good stuff! Thanks for the informative links! - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3586291&cid=43287553 [slashdot.org]

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When threatened, APK typically produces a post with links showing he's essentially posted this hundreds of times to slashdot stories... - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3586291&cid=43290275 [slashdot.org]

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[to apk] Your post got downmodded because you're a nutjob gone off his meds. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3586081&cid=43288893 [slashdot.org]

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[to apk] The reason people impersonate you is because everyone thinks you're a moron. The hosts file is not intended to be used as you suggest. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3591803&cid=43302885 [slashdot.org]
-->What? You don't have a 14MB hosts file with ~1million entries in it? Next you'll probably tell me that your computer doesn't start thrashing and take 5 minutes for a DNS lookup! - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3591803&cid=43302977 [slashdot.org]

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[about apk] - this fwit is as thick as a post. worse, this shithead has mod points. and using them. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3591681&cid=43302873 [slashdot.org]

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In before the fight between those two guys and their walls of text... - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3592647&cid=43306485 [slashdot.org]

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HEY APK YOU ARE A WASTE OF OXYGEN -GET A LIFE - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3593009&cid=43308147 [slashdot.org]

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KPA ...thgim dik a ekil .s.b laivirt hcus no emit hcum taht etsaw t'ndluow I sa ,ti gniod em TON si ti - syug ON - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3592933&cid=43307605 [slashdot.org]

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[to apk] You seriously need to go see a shrink. You are a fucking fruitcake! - http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3592933&cid=43307559 [slashdot.org]

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[to apk] Did you ever consider that it's not just one corrupt moderator, it's a bunch of regular slashdot users who infrequently get mod points who think you are totally full of shit? Stop posting annoying off topic irrelevant bullshit, and people won't mod you down. I'm seriously sick of reading your posts about someone impersonating you. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3592933&cid=43308389 [slashdot.org]

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[to apk] you should be forced to use a cholla cactus as a butt-plug - http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3592647&cid=43308219 [slashdot.org]

--

I wouldn't be surprised if that is APK trying to draw attention to himself, since he thinks such endless tirades are examples of him winning and make him look good. When people stop paying attention to him, or post actual counterpoints he can't come up with a response to, he'll post strawman troll postings to shoot down, sometimes just copy pasted from previous stories. - http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3592647&cid=43308851 [slashdot.org]

-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-

Did you see the movie "Pokemon"? Actually the induced night "dream world" is synonymous with the academic religious induced "HOSTS file" enslavement of DNS. Domains have no inherent value, as it was invented as a counterfeit and fictitious value to represent natural values in name resolution. Unfortunately, human values have declined to fictitious word values. Unknowingly, you are living in a "World Wide Web", as in a fictitious life in a counterfeit Internet - which you could consider APK induced "HOSTS file". Can you distinguish the academic induced root server from the natural OpenDNS? Beware of the change when your brain is free from HOSTS file enslavement - for you could find that the natural Slashdot has been destroyed!!

FROM -> Man - how many times have I dusted you in tech debates that you have decided to troll me by ac posts for MONTHS now, OR IMPERSONATING ME AS YOU DID HERE and you were caught in it by myself & others here, only to fail each time as you have here?)...

So long nummynuts, sorry to have to kick your nuts up into your head verbally speaking.

cower in my shadow some more, feeb. you're completely pathetic.

-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-

* :)

Ac trolls' "BIG FAIL" (quoted): Eat your words!

P.S.=> That's what makes me LAUGH harder than ANYTHING ELSE on this forums (full of "FUD" spreading trolls) - When you hit trolls with facts & truths they CANNOT disprove validly on computing tech based grounds, this is the result - Applying unjustifiable downmods to effetely & vainly *try* to "hide" my posts & facts/truths they extoll!

Hahaha... lol , man: Happens nearly every single time I post such lists (proving how ineffectual these trolls are), only showing how solid my posts of that nature are...

That's the kind of martial arts [google.com] I practice.

-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-

Disproof of all apk's statements:

OLD POST LINKS MIRRORED HERE:
http://pastebin.com/8yxcW3TJ [pastebin.com]

RECENT POST LINKS:
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3581193&cid=43273839 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3581857&cid=43276593 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3581991&cid=43277017 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3582075&cid=43277273 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3582193&cid=43278565 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3584857&cid=43282375 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3578357&cid=43282481 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3585297&cid=43283241 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3585417&cid=43283695 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3585451&cid=43284271 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3585593&cid=43284843 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3585795&cid=43285307 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3585827&cid=43285755 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3586081&cid=43286509 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3586127&cid=43286699 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3586137&cid=43287021 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3586291&cid=43287449 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3586345&cid=43287755 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3586303&cid=43289687 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3586627&cid=43289733 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3586589&cid=43290487 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3587901&cid=43290773 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3588003&cid=43290983 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3588135&cid=43292021 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3588293&cid=43292235 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3588505&cid=43293807 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3585927&cid=43293997 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3588749&cid=43294405 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3588831&cid=43295131 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3589063&cid=43295377 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3588881&cid=43295689 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3589089&cid=43295855 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3589273&cid=43295915 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3589273&cid=43296223 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3589297&cid=43296795 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3589441&cid=43298759 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3589575&cid=43301133 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3589605&cid=43301143 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3591681&cid=43303049 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3591803&cid=43304723 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3592325&cid=43305507 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3591903&cid=43307375 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3588523&cid=43307387 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3592187&cid=43307465 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3593009&cid=43308801 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3592973&cid=43308813 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3592933&cid=43308825 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3592647&cid=43308843 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3592647&cid=43308851 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3593139&cid=43311793 [slashdot.org]
END

It's Jeremiah Cornelius folks, not I... apk (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43311989)

THIS is why he's doing it & proof of it, here -> http://interviews.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3585927&cid=43295193 [slashdot.org] when others pointed out Jeremiah Cornelius forgot to submit one of the "first post spams" masquerading as myself as AC, & mistakenly submitted one of the impersonations of myself as his registered 'luser' name here on /. forums.

Pretty pitiful actually, but like every up to no good idiot does? He screwed up & submitted it under his registered 'luser' name here.

* Jeremiah Cornelius: DO YOURSELF, and the rest of us, A GIANT FAVOR MAN: Seek professional psychiatric help!

(Since Jeremiah Cornelius obviously can't get over the fact he made a spelling error on what it is HE ALLEGEDLY DID FOR A LIVING? That's not MY fault... it's HIS!)

APK

P.S.=> I seriously must have dusted JC (in his mind @ least) for his BAD spelling error & it "got his goat"...

I.E.-> Catching what he claimed to do as a job, for YEARS he left "PENETRATION" (correct) spelled as "PENTRATION" (incorrect) on his resume on LinkedIn & I pointed it out as he & his friends trolled me as usual (webmistressrachel, gmhowell, & crew (probably ALL JC no doubt using alterate emails or TOR to do it as a possible - I've caught "them & theirs" doing it before, ala Barbara, not Barbie = TomHudson (same person))).

So THAT is what has gotten his goat in a technical debate & his "geek angst" could only come up with *trying* to "impersonate me" in every news thread on /. for the month of March 2013 so far!

(Just to attempt to 'discredit me' as a spammer here obviously)

Doing so, by posting that "$10,000 challenge" &/or reposts of my old posts on hosts file value to end users into EVERY SINGLE NEWS ARTICLE POSTED on /. ...

It's all I can think of that *might* cause such a mentally troubled 'reaction' like the Jeremiah Cornelius is doing & there's NO QUESTION he's the one doing this spamming of nearly every posted article masquerading as myself...!

... apk

Totally unworkable (4, Informative)

PerMolestiasEruditio (1118269) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310353)

Even if it was igniting and had good fusion gain, there are such a huge array of serious engineering issues that they have got no economic answers for that it is never going to work commercially. High precision optics in close proximity to nuclear blasts?? High precision targets that cost $10k (but would have to reduce to $0.25 to be commercial) being introduced into a plasma filled chamber at 15Hz that must be positioned with sub mm precision? May as well keep it running now for the materials side of things, but as much as possible fusion R&D budgets should be directed away from NIF and ITER (tokomaks are too big and too expensive to be commercially viable) and towards fusion options with at least some potential for commercial viability like:
General fusion (liquid metal implosion on plasma target), Tri-Alpha, Helion (electromagnetic compression of plasma toroids), Polywell (Inertial electrostatic confinement in a magnetised 'wiffleball' trap).

Also Fission in fast breeders provides a far more certain short term payoff, cheap, managable engineering issues, no nasty tritium to deal with and massively reducing radioactive waste compared to current non-breeding reactors. There is enough accessible Thorium and Uranium to power our civilisation at current levels until the sun kills the earth.

Re:Totally unworkable (2, Interesting)

Ginger Unicorn (952287) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310363)

You have to start somewhere.

Re:Totally unworkable (2, Informative)

lxs (131946) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310439)

There is enough accessible Thorium and Uranium to power our civilisation at current levels until the sun kills the earth.

Care to back up that claim with solid data? because many experts would disagree with that assessment on uranium. [wikipedia.org] and thorium reactors are still experimental.

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

O('_')O_Bush (1162487) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310473)

Even if we only have a hundred years worth of viable uranium, I would expect us to work out Thorium reactors (and viable fusion) long before then.

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43310589)

"Even if we only have a hundred years worth of viable uranium"

Current estimates are that if we had a "uranium economy" where any sort of significant amount of power came from fission, is that there's enough fuel for about 12 years. Seriously, look it up.

Pointless anyway, nuclear is clearly dead. Last year they installed 31 GW of wind, about 25 (27?) of natgas, and 21 of solar PV. In that same year the "installed" -14 GW of nuclear. At the current rates, the US will be nuclear free by 2050. Seriously, look it up.

Among it's many, many problems on the CAPEX side, the float of uranium in the market is small enough to make it easy prey for speculators. So over the last decade it's price has basically been a proxy for oil. Seriously, look it up. As such, its ability to economically deliver power into a grid where the base load price is under 3 cents is *extremely* limited. So they're going out of business.

Here in Ontario-ari-ari-o, we pay our reactors 5.5 cents a kWh flat, when we sell it for about 2.9 cents. What a deal!

Re:Totally unworkable (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43310609)

Pointless anyway, nuclear is clearly dead. Last year they installed 31 GW of wind, about 25 (27?) of natgas, and 21 of solar PV. In that same year the "installed" -14 GW of nuclear. At the current rates, the US will be nuclear free by 2050. Seriously, look it up.

Look up the terms "capacity factor" and "installed capacity". Especially with solar, you may want to compare the capacity factor for the entire day of June 21st with the entire day of December 21st. Then tell me how the capacity factor of nuclear power compares on those days.

Re:Totally unworkable (2)

Maury Markowitz (452832) | about a year and a half ago | (#43311653)

"Then tell me how the capacity factor of nuclear power compares on those days."

Capacity factor of nuclear: ~ 85%
Capacity factor of PV: ~ 20%

Price of peak power in the summer: ~ 35 cents
Price of base load: ~ 3 cents

35 / 3 ~= 12
85/20 ~= 4

12 >> 4

But don't believe me, do the math yourself. Here: http://www.nrel.gov/analysis/tech_lcoe.html

Vogel is $7.25/Watt, discount is about 6.5, capacity is about 85
Large PV is about $3/Watt, discount is about 4.5, capacity is about 20, fuel and heating is both zero

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

wjwlsn (94460) | about a year and a half ago | (#43312169)

I don't understand your numbers, your analysis, or what you're trying to conclude. Why didn't you just publish a link to the DOE Transparent Cost Database, which is linked from the page you cited?

http://en.openei.org/apps/TCDB/ [openei.org]

From the Levelized Cost of Energy visualization, I see these costs for nuclear and solar PV, in $/kWh:
* nuclear .. range of 0.04 to 0.12, median 0.06
* solar PV .. range of 0.15 to 0.59, median 0.28

There, that's more understandable.

Re:Totally unworkable (2)

MightyYar (622222) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310741)

Current estimates are that if we had a "uranium economy" where any sort of significant amount of power came from fission, is that there's enough fuel for about 12 years. Seriously, look it up.

That assumes no reprocessing. The whole point of breeders is that they make more fuel than they consume.

You are right that there is currently a flood of fossil fuel that crowds out nuclear, but people have such short memories...

Re:Totally unworkable (3, Insightful)

Maury Markowitz (452832) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310863)

"That assumes no reprocessing. The whole point of breeders is that they make more fuel than they consume."

Breeder reactors have a 100% economic failure rate. Every study on the economics of a breeder economy is quick to point this out, and outline why they are extremely unlikely to be able to fix this problem.

"You are right that there is currently a flood of fossil fuel that crowds out nuclear,"

2/3rds of all new generation installed in the last year is renewable. Spin that any way you want.

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

wanfuse123 (2860713) | about a year and a half ago | (#43311095)

The fact is we have enough Thorium to power the US for a 1000 years from ONE mountain PASS. That's right ONE mountain pass will supply the US with 100% of it's needs for 1000 years! There is enough Thorium in that mountain pass to shovel it into a bin and nearly use it without processing (when compared with conventional reactor refining) to supply us with 1000 years at current energy consumption for every last WATT [rawcell.com] we use. That link points to facts about Thorium as a fuel.

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

wjwlsn (94460) | about a year and a half ago | (#43312231)

2/3rds of all new generation installed in the last year is renewable. Spin that any way you want.

OK, I'll bite... here's what I think is going through the head of someone developing a renewable energy project:

Holy Shit! Have you seen how much over cost these dipshits are willing to pay for renewable power? And, even better, they already assume that we can't be baseload or dispatchable, so we get paid a premium for the power we generate even when they don't need it!!!

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43310751)

"Current estimates are that if we had a "uranium economy" where any sort of significant amount of power came from fission, is that there's enough fuel for about 12 years. Seriously, look it up."

Okay.

The current uranium reserves are enough for 80 years at current rates [world-nuclear.org] (~5 million tonnes total, and ~68000 tonnes per year), and that's not accounting for any future discoveries of significant deposits or using lower-grade deposits, which would greatly expand that supply if there was demand for it (i.e. if energy costs continue to climb as cheap fossil fuels get harder to supply). It doesn't account for use of breeder reactors or reprocessing of spent fuel, which would expand that supply by orders of magnitude. It also doesn't account for reprocessing weapons grade uranium. And if talking about CANDU reactors, they have much more diverse fuel possibilities than conventional ones. It's fair to say that the supply of uranium is a heck of a lot more secure in terms of future supply than, say, oil.

And of course uranium has been a proxy for oil. So is every other energy supply. I don't have to look that one up. What's your point?

Wind power is great, assuming you have base load supplied by something else and you've built up plenty of overcapacity to deal with days when the wind is calm. Natural gas is as much a finite resource as uranium is, but we're going through the supply a lot faster. Natural gas prices are low at the moment, but they aren't going to stay that way. What then? Solar PV? Not much use in Ontario in the winter with significantly fewer daylight hours. And people complain rather bitterly about ever more wind farms in their neighborhoods.

It's pretty clear that a mix of energy supplies are needed, and I don't see any reason why nuclear shouldn't be a *part* of that mix.

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

geekmux (1040042) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310781)

...nuclear is clearly dead. Last year they installed 31 GW of wind, about 25 (27?) of natgas, and 21 of solar PV. In that same year the "installed" -14 GW of nuclear. At the current rates, the US will be nuclear free by 2050. Seriously, look it up.

Nuclear-free by 2050? That's a laugh.

Now factor in greed and corruption that is the very basis of why this argument even exists, and wise up.

Re:Totally unworkable (2)

Maury Markowitz (452832) | about a year and a half ago | (#43311437)

"Nuclear-free by 2050? That's a laugh."

Ok, be lazy and don't look it up. Here, I'll do it for you:

The IEA's BLUE Map for 2050 suggests that in order for nuclear to become the force it was predicted to during the nuclear renaissance talks, 20 large reactors would have to be commissioned every year. The current worldwide rate is negative 7 per year. That means nuclear will play an ever shrinking role in the total worldwide energy mix.

More recently, the SAGE report suggests that new reactors will not replace end-of-life systems in the US. "Absent an extremely large injection of government funding or further life extensions, the reactors currently operating are going to end their licensed lifetimes between now and the late 2050s,” Bradford concludes. “They will become part of an economics-driven US nuclear phase-out a couple of decades behind the government-led nuclear exit in Germany.”

Consider the example of Duke. It's all you need to know, right there.

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

wjwlsn (94460) | about a year and a half ago | (#43312385)

Please provide links to this so-called "SAGE report", because all I can find are self-published opinion pieces by anti-nuclear activists such as Amory Lovins and Peter Bradford... who, despite being a former commissioner of the NRC, has a long record of being anti-nuke.

Re:Totally unworkable (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43313965)

So, what you're saying is, not only do we have to replace oil as the supply peaks and dwindles, but we have to replace nuclear power as well?

We are backing ourselves into one awfully narrow corner if we write off expansion of nuclear power as an option.

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

wjwlsn (94460) | about a year and a half ago | (#43311943)

Here in Ontario-ari-ari-o, we pay our reactors 5.5 cents a kWh flat, when we sell it for about 2.9 cents. What a deal!

That's the way the Ontario market is set up ... payouts are almost always higher than market price. The difference is made up by the "Global Adjustment", which is generally pretty huge and goes mostly to non-nuclear generators. The sentence that you wrote about "what a deal" nuclear is for Ontario is accurate, but incomplete; its true meaning is not what you intended. Here's what you should have written.

Here in Ontario-ari-ari-o, we pay our reactors 5.5 cents a kWh flat, when we sell it for about 2.9 cents. What a deal! That's only about 2.5 cents/kWh above market, compared with the 17 cents/kWh above market paid to the non-utility, non-nuclear generators!

For more info, see the following:

Re:Totally unworkable (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43312441)

"Even if we only have a hundred years worth of viable uranium"

Current estimates are that if we had a "uranium economy" where any sort of significant amount of power came from fission, is that there's enough fuel for about 12 years. Seriously, look it up.

Pointless anyway, nuclear is clearly dead. Last year they installed 31 GW of wind, about 25 (27?) of natgas, and 21 of solar PV. In that same year the "installed" -14 GW of nuclear. At the current rates, the US will be nuclear free by 2050. Seriously, look it up.

I did, and your numbers are off by a factor of 100. We have at least a thousand years of uranium in *known* reserves, and probably ten times that amount in other areas. 15 wind and solar companies went bankrupt last year because state handouts are drying up, and the only thing you've got right is that the US is using a lot of natural gas.

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43313563)

Known Uranium reserves extractable at current market prices, which is something like $40/lbs, are rouchly 4 million ton, translating to a few decades at current consumption. Obviously, this depends a lot on the current price, which varied between $10/lbs and $100/lbs during the last 30 years. At $100/lbs, extraction from phosphate ore becomes viable, making 22 million tons available. At around $400/lbs, extraction from seawater appears possible, making at least 4 billion tons available. Clearly, Uranium can last at least thousands of years, even in the once through cycle, and still add only $0.005/kWh to the price of electricity. Seriously, look it up.

With breeder reactors, even more becomes available, since you'd remain economically viable with 100-fold poorer ore. And then there's Thorium. Shippingport ran on Thorium for 5 years, and this is not experimental, it just wasn't economically competitive with the Uranium cycle. We can clearly build Thorium burning reactors today, given the political will. Thorium is free right now, it is co-extracted with rare earth metals. Seriously, look it up.

Besides, you are seriously giving Uranium a bum rap, because it is "uneconomical", and then compare it to windpower of all things?! That's wishful thinking at best, and blatant lying at worst

Re:Totally unworkable (2)

cyberjock1980 (1131059) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310653)

I bet they said that 50 years ago when the first generation nuclear power plants were being built. Right now I'm not expecting that in the next 50 years we'll have thorium worked out either. So how long are we going to keep telling ourselves that thorium is "only 100 years away"?

Yes, I work in the nuclear industry and read up on this stuff because I find it exciting. But I don't find the rate at which mankind develops technology that could potentially change our civilization for the better too exciting :(

Re:Totally unworkable (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43311243)

Yea, let's bet the planet on that.

Re:Totally unworkable (2)

khallow (566160) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310809)

It's worth noting many of those experts were wrong in their predictions or that the prediction doesn't mean that much. For example of the latter, Robert Vance merely noted that uranium production peaked about the same time that the US shut down new plant construction. You wouldn't expect supply to keep increasing when demand drops due to factors independent of the cost of extracting uranium.

And it is known that there is a vast amount of uranium and thorium in the Earth's crust. I don't know whether enough of that is "accessible" in the grandparent's sense to justify his claim. Thorium in particular doesn't concentrate very well.

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

JDG1980 (2438906) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310811)

Care to back up that claim with solid data?

I suspect this claim comes from this page [stanford.edu] by the late John J. McCarthy. He summarizes the views of Bernard Cohen, which include specific figures for both the availability and price of uranium. (The cost figures presumably would have changed, as the article is 3 decades old, but the physics would not have.)

Re:Totally unworkable (2, Interesting)

careysub (976506) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310851)

There is enough accessible Thorium and Uranium to power our civilisation at current levels until the sun kills the earth.

Care to back up that claim with solid data? because many experts would disagree with that assessment on uranium. [wikipedia.org] and thorium reactors are still experimental.

Did you actually read the section of the article you linked to? If you did you would have read this: "If one is willing to pay $300/kg for uranium, there is a vast quantity available in the ocean. It is worth noting that since fuel cost only amounts to a small fraction of nuclear energy total cost per kWh, and raw uranium price also constitutes a small fraction of total fuel costs, such an increase on uranium prices wouldn’t involve a very significant increase in the total cost per kWh produced."

How much uranium is in seawater [wikipedia.org] ? 4.6 billion tons, roughly one hundred thousand times current annual consumption.

How much can we afford to pay for uranium without driving up the cost of nuclear power significantly? Well, in a year 2.7*10^12 kwh of nuclear powered electricity are produced, with a value of something like 270 billion dollars (assuming an average price of $0.10 or so). To produce this 50,000 tons of uranium are consumed, or about $5000 worth of electricity per kilogram. Looks like paying $300 per kilogram for uranium is unlikely to seriously inconvenience the nuclear power industry.

Re:Totally unworkable (4, Insightful)

lxs (131946) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310959)

Great! we will buy the uranium with all the gold, manganese, lithium and helium3 we will extract from seawater! For all the hype about "extract X from seawater" AFAIK the only things successfully extracted from seawater on an industrial scale are sea salt and water.

Re:Totally unworkable (5, Insightful)

Jeremi (14640) | about a year and a half ago | (#43311853)

AFAIK the only things successfully extracted from seawater on an industrial scale are sea salt and water.

... and fish ;)

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

balsy2001 (941953) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310923)

I am not saying the estimates are wrong, but I take these types of estimates with a grain of salt. People have been warning about the end of oil for decades and saying peak oil is not far off. The problem is that these predictions are inherently based on proven reserves. In oil, as the demand increases (and hence the price and profit), companies start looking harder for more. In oil they historically keep finding it. The same may not be true for Uranium, but there is a decent chance there is more uranium out there than people think. All that being said, I am a big fan of breeder reactors. Thorium Breeder reactors are NOT experimental and have been used in commercial pressurized water reactors (LWBR http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shippingport_Atomic_Power_Station [wikipedia.org] and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Breeder_reactor [wikipedia.org] ) that put electricity on the grid (about 60MWe). Non-throium breeders have also been run that are liquid sodium fast reactors (EBRII http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EBRII [wikipedia.org] ) which produced 20MWe. You may be confusion these technologies with liquid flouride throrium reactors (LFTR).

Re:Totally unworkable (2)

Dr. Spork (142693) | about a year and a half ago | (#43311349)

Removing uranium from sea water is commercially feasible [ieee.org] , and the earth's rivers bring uranium to the sea faster than we could ever use it, even if it accounted for 100% of humanity's energy. So yes, as long as the rivers of Earth keep running, there will be enough accessible uranium.

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43310467)

You do understand that breeder reactors can't transmute every fission product, right? A fission product can be very radioactive and still have a small neutron cross section for absorption. And since high level waste, even from current nuclear reactors, is not an enormous size, the benefit isn't great. The problem with high level waste isn't that there is a lot of it. The problem is that there is no permanent location to store it.

And your statement about tritium is laughable. I don't mean to be an asshole when I say this, but the only people who worry about tritium are Sierra Club loons. Tritium is pretty much the least harmful radioactive substance--it doesn't bioaccumulate, it has very low energy decay, and it is not produced in large quantities. Do you know what fission plants do with the tritium that they produce? They file a permit with the State they are in and discharge it out with the wastewater (to lakes, rivers, and oceans). The only time you hear about tritium in the news is when a plant has a leak that allows tritium to get into an aquifer or when they miscalculate the values on a permit. Neither case is particularly worrying.

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310543)

There is enough accessible Thorium and Uranium to power our civilisation at current levels until the sun kills the earth.

Unfortunately, our civilization will kill itself before we start using that Thorium and Uranium.

The biggest problems with nuclear energy aren't engineering and technology . . . they are political.

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

Yomers (863527) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310673)

oops, post to unmod. And yes, problems are political and in media - people got scared easy by nuclear incidents and media happily use.

and a REALLY stupid "free press" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43312039)

Three generations of utility plant degreed engineers in my family alone, power, light, water, sewage, have all personally run into the problem of the politicians using a willing "free press" to push ignorance on a sometimes willing sheeple herd.
My grandfather swore up and down when he was working on the siting plans for the Clinch River Breeder Reactor that an Illinois State Representative told him to his face that the new EPA law protected species act was written specifically to use the snail darter to KILL commercial (not government owned) nuclear power in the United States because the Atomic Energy Agency had provided testimony that the government SHOULD get out of the energy business and it was not only SAFE, but smart to turn it over to a regulated industry with consensus industry standards and NOT government dictates. I REALLY would like to be able to prove that statement with a reference to the person who made the comments, but grandfather 'moved on' in 1992.
My late Father's more recent dealings with the EPA ... well, I'd better leave that one out ... some people are still alive who would feel better NOT having details from federal court non-public (I think actually sealed) testimony brought up in a public setting.

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

MartinSchou (1360093) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310631)

Even if it was igniting and had good fusion gain, there are such a huge array of serious engineering issues that they have got no economic answers for that it is never going to work commercially.

Generally I find it to be better to wait until I know if something will work, before I start wondering about commercial applications.

In 1900 the idea of visiting the moon would probably have made H. G. Wells somewhat annoyed, as his book wasn't published until 1901 (before powered flight). Humans walked on the Moon a scant 70 years later. Making plans for a commercial suborbital venture would be a bit premature. It would have been premature 20 years ago. 10 years ago - not so much, as Virgin Galactic showed in 2004, because at that point the science of it was well established and it became a relatively easy engineering problem./blockquote

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

plopez (54068) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310735)

Given the rate of climate change do we have 70 years? How long before it is a *significant* percentage of power produced?

Re:Totally unworkable (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43310897)

Given the rate of climate change do we have 70 years?

Given the rate of climate change we have 70 years before you can read the change on a medical thermometer. And that's assuming the worst case on the official predictions.
If you only believe Al Gore's old predictions, we've already been cooked and this entire reality that you perceive now is just some dying hallucination that's a whole lot more boring than you would've expected, maybe you just have a really boring subconscious.

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

wanfuse123 (2860713) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310659)

That's what I have been trying to tell the Slashdot crowd at every chance I can. I am willing to bet with a 4 year effort similar to the 4 years of the Manhattan project (1942-1945) where we went from ground zero ( No Pun Intended) to a developed nuclear bomb for 23 Billion in 2013 dollars that we could over come the materials problem for such high temperatures (700 degrees Celsius) and high neutron flux. I have actually proposed a workable solution for this problem (although it would be a little expensive) but others have proposed alternate materials for the inner reactor container. There is only a few other problems which haven't been resolved to make the generation IV reactors viable. On the other hand the fusion reactors will take another 50 years to commercialize. It will be great when they do so it's a worthy investment. Although they aught to invest in alternatives other than Tokamaks. You can read about generation IV reactors here [rawcell.com] or about India's Thorium Reactor which comes online this year [rawcell.com] .

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43310909)

but as much as possible fusion R&D budgets should be directed away from NIF and ITER (tokomaks are too big and too expensive to be commercially viable) and towards fusion options with at least some potential for commercial viability like:

The list of alternative fusion devices being funded for research by the DoE (and a couple companies) is much longer than the list you gave and covers a wide range of scales from basic table top work to cheap room sized ones, to tokamak and variation facilities. While many of these designs are making progress, experience has taught that scaling up is not as simple as it may look at the beginning and it will take time for other designs to catch up with the performance of tokamaks (assuming it is even possible for some of them). But while the current level of many of those projects is cheaper than ITER, most of them would probably still end up costing billions of dollars to build a research reactor of the scale needed to test commercial viability. Although part of this, for ITER included, is that research reactors are a lot more expensive than ultimate commercial versions due to the much larger need of diagnostic and access to understand what the plasma is doing, and in some cases that puts some tight limits on design of the rest of the machine that would otherwise be simpler.

Skunkworks Fusion Project (1)

catchblue22 (1004569) | about a year and a half ago | (#43312171)

I don't understand why this Skunkworks project presentation [youtube.com] from Google's "Solve for X" program isn't receiving more attention. The presentation is made by a Lockheed Martin Skunkworks scientist (Charles Chase) who claims they will be able to make a 100MW fusion reactor the size of a truck trailer in a few years. Admittedly there aren't that many details given, but that is understandable as Skunkworks does't usually release its projects. To me the above presentation has the ring of authenticity. I have often thought that achieving fusion conditions at a small scale should be possible by the elegant application of magnetic and electric fields. I know "cold fusion" fooled a lot of people and made us reflexively skeptical of fusion claims. But I don't believe Charles Chase's claims fundamentally violate the laws of physics like many people's vision of cold fusion did. Give this video a watch and see what you think.

Re:Skunkworks Fusion Project (1)

meta-monkey (321000) | about a year and a half ago | (#43312761)

From what I understand, there may have been a non-laws-of-physics-violating explanation for the observed production of neutrons and helium in the cold fusion curiosities of the late 80s, just we didn't know what we were looking at. The objection was "well this must be a chemical reaction because there's no way to overcome the Coulomb barrier!" required to squoosh protons close enough together to fuse into a heavier nucleus. However, recent re-analysis seems to indicate the helium and neutrons may actually have been a result of beta decay from heavier elements (I think a nickel-hydrogen compound?). So, it wasn't necessarily a hoax. They just didn't realize they were looking at a weak nuclear force reaction instead of a strong nuclear force reaction.

Research into this possibility has been named "Low Energy Nucelar Reaction" (LENR), as it no longer claims fusion. However, funding and attention is difficult to come by as being associated with cold fusion is basically the crackpot touch of death.

Re:Skunkworks Fusion Project (NOT COLD FUSION) (1)

catchblue22 (1004569) | about a year and a half ago | (#43312905)

From what I understand, there may have been a non-laws-of-physics-violating explanation for the observed production of neutrons and helium in the cold fusion curiosities of the late 80s

I am quite aware of the details of "cold fusion". I don't want to talk about that. What I do want to talk about is the presentation by Charles Chase [youtube.com] on using small scale magnetic confinement (a cylinder of about 1 cubic meter volume I think) of plasma to achieve the conditions necessary for fusion. Sheesh. This is a nerds site. Would someone just watch the video I linked to and explain to me why this cannot be real. Because I have a physics background, and what Charles Chase speaks about sounds plausible to me. Lockheed Martin Skunkworks is a storied program, that brought us things like the SR-71 Blackbird. If they developed new fusion technology, we wouldn't expect them to publish the minute details yet...that's not how they work. But based on my intuitive knowledge of fields, I don't see why it isn't possible to craft a magnetic field arrangement that will confine high temperature plasma. They excite the plasma using radio-frequency EM radiation. And at some point the temperatures and pressures increase enough to achieve the fusion of hydrogen.

Re:Skunkworks Fusion Project (NOT COLD FUSION) (1)

DMUTPeregrine (612791) | about a year and a half ago | (#43314315)

Small scale fusion isn't that hard. Farnsworth-Hirsch fusors have been built as high-school science fair projects. The hard part is getting the things to output more energy than it takes to run them.

Re:Totally unworkable (2)

ultranova (717540) | about a year and a half ago | (#43312497)

Even if it was igniting and had good fusion gain, there are such a huge array of serious engineering issues that they have got no economic answers for that it is never going to work commercially.

But let's assume, just for the sake of argument, that those are all miraculously solved within the next month. Can we start using fusion? No, because it's nuclear fusion, and thus still nuclear, and thus still scary. For example, Greenpeace has already declared [greenpeace.org] that they will oppose fusion plants.

Not that you can generate power any other way either, since windmills kill birds and spoil the view, solar plants take up space, geothermal brings up toxins, fossil fuels generate CO2, renewable fuels take up farmland, orbital solar risks exposing living things to microwaves, etc. etc. Everything has consequences and no consequences are acceptable, thus nothing can be done. That's "green" for you.

Re:Totally unworkable (1)

meta-monkey (321000) | about a year and a half ago | (#43312777)

Wrong, we all just need stationary bikes hooked up to generators. Pedal faster, maggots!

Crap, that generates CO2 as well, doesn't it?

Actually, it's easy to understand (5, Informative)

Maury Markowitz (452832) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310595)

"That makes understanding the basic justification for the facility, which boasts the world's most powerful laser system, more than a little tricky."

NIF is a way to keep scientists at LLNL employed. That is its #1 justification, and always has been. Ask any insider.

Any hope of laser-based fusion is a pipe dream, and always has been. Nuckolls himself, the guy that started all of this, was shown a calculation in the early 1970s that proves this beyond a doubt. The problem is that the price of the target is many many times the value of the electricity it could produce.

Power on the grid right now is selling for about 3.3 cents a kWh. (see http://www.ieso.ca/imoweb/marketdata/markettoday.asp)

NIF, if it worked, which it doesn't aims to produce about 20 MJ a "shot". Under good conditions you might convert 25% of that to electrical power (don't quote gas peaker efficiencies, they're a different cycle). So we might get 5 MJ per shot.

If you're not familiar with MJ, it's a measure of energy. kWh is a more common one, so I'll convert 5 MJ = 1.39 kWh.

So at current prices, each shot might produce about 5 cents worth of power.

Now simply look at the target. It's a gold-covered cylinder machined to the sixth decimal place accuracy, capped on it's open end by double-pane windows of some incredibly clear optical system, inside of which is an equally perfectly machined plastic sphere containing the fuel that's cryogenically frozen on the inside and then smoothed using an IR laser.

The targets costs thousands and thousands of dollars per shot. And might (if it ever works) delivers a few cents of power. See the problem?

When this was first pointed out to Nuckolls in the early 1970s he worried, and then ignored it. He proposed a system with such high gain that the fuel would be delivered from a perfume mister that would self-form through surface tension into a ball that would be close enough for comfort.

We've spent 40 years learning about the physics of ICF, and what we've learned is that there is absolutely no way this could possibly work. The physics just isn't there. So instead we've pushed ahead with ever less-cost-efficient machines with ever-less-convincing excuses for doing so. Nova, built in the 1980s, was only 2-fold less successful in reaching break-even than NIF. However, NIF costs well over 10 times as much. The price efficiency is *dropping* with every generation.

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (3, Interesting)

Jade_Wayfarer (1741180) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310701)

Even when Tokamak was introduced for the first time, it was obvious that idea of using fusion process as a heating element (using steam or other inefficient way to convert heat to electricity) is simply laughable. Laser-based fusion is horrendous even as a concept - it's as barbaric as trying to create mass transit using 19-th century tram carriage propelled by small-scale nuclear blasts. There is absolutely no engineering elegance in it, even less than in the first-generation (fission) nuclear plants.

I find Focus Fusion or some other non-billion-budget projects much more appealing - not because they have more chances to succeed (most of them don't), but because they represent something new. New technologies, new designs, new way of thinking at least. Compare NASA and SpaceX - yes, latter would not be possible without the former, but for now our real chance to progress towards easily accessible space-travel lies with (comparatively) small private companies, not with some inefficient hulking money-consuming monstrosity. Of course I would be glad to any form of cheap fusion energy, or any form of "consumer-grade" space-travel, but for now my hopes don't lie with NIF or NASA.

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (1)

trout007 (975317) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310889)

I completely agree. I still don't think we really understand how stars work. I think the Electric Universe people might be on to something that the sun is powered externally and the fusion is taking place near the "surface" as an electromagnetic pinch and not in the interior. The Plasma Focus devices share similar characteristics and from an engineering and economics standpoint will be much better if the tech can be developed.

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43310951)

The Plasma Focus devices share similar characteristics and from an engineering and economics standpoint will be much better if the tech can be developed.

That has been said about pretty much every fusion concept at the tabletop phase, and then things get complicated and harder as they scale up. There are still several other designs at different development points, some much further along that plasma focus, that think they can scale up better than tokamaks, and others yet that were found to hit brick walls at larger sizes. It is a slow process to sort out such issues for any device, and the larger ones are probably going to be more expensive than hoped. The question is just exactly how expensive.

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310967)

I completely agree. I still don't think we really understand how stars work.

We don't really understand how lots of things work that we have right here, but I thought that the sun's gravitational field was what kept it contained.

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (3, Funny)

ultranova (717540) | about a year and a half ago | (#43311919)

We don't really understand how lots of things work that we have right here, but I thought that the sun's gravitational field was what kept it contained.

Gravity is just a theory. The combeting explanation, Theory of Intelligent Falling, provides an interesting alternative: simply dedicate the building your fusion reactor is housed in as a temple to your local solar deity, and re-title your electric bill as a sacrifice. I'm sure anthropologists can help recover the proper rituals to make it work; perhaps Egypt would be a good place to start, since they had to power their pyramid-building machines somehow.

Granted, there might be some problems in places like Middle America due to changing cultural mores, but if either the USA or local drug barons would dedicate their victims to the cause, I'm sure that even the most bloodthirsty Aztec god would be more than satisfied. Just imagine it: the entire continent receiving limitless free electricity and all it would take would be for bullet moulds to imprint the text "Victims dedicated to mighty Huitzilopochtli" on their products!

And this is why we must fight gun control: it's a communist plot to throw America into a Dark Age by stopping the human sacrifices that keep the Sun moving. The Founding Fathers knew this, having learned much wisdom from the natives, and did their best to ensure that the Chaos Gods would never hunger. That's the real reason why Bush so desperately wanted to go to war: the sacrifice reserves from World War II were finally running low, so more had to be made ASAP. Al-Qaida, a cover organization of CIA, was activated to manufacture the reason, and succeeded perfectly.

Also, Moon landing was a hoax; in reality, the Japanese got there first. They used the Vernian "cannon" method to send first supplies and then an expedition - the USA later covered these up by claiming the blasts to be atomic bombs dropped by them, which is clearly ridiculous since Hiroshima and Nagasaki are habitable today which would be impossible if they'd been nuked. The Imperial Japanese base on the dark side of the Moon has been collaborating with Saurian overlords for years to spread pacifism, so the world would be left defenseless against the coming communist revolution and alien takeover.

The only question is, what is Hitler's role in all this? Is he hiding in South American jungles, waiting for the coming war to rise once again, or has he already - for example, by receiving plastic surgery and a fake birth certificate and running for US president?

TL;DR Hydrogen pellets don't work, you have to aim your lasers on still beating human hearts to generate fusion power. Also, communist Saurian overlords, Adolf Hitler, and an Imperial Japanese moon base are about to fight over who'll take over the world, but that's details.

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (2)

khallow (566160) | about a year and a half ago | (#43311147)

I still don't think we really understand how stars work.

Based on what? We have models that explain pretty well the distribution of stars we actually see and the energy output from these stars.

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (1)

khallow (566160) | about a year and a half ago | (#43311169)

and the fusion is taking place near the "surface" as an electromagnetic pinch and not in the interior

If it really were, then why don't we see more variable conditions on the Sun's surface, greater mass escaping from the Sun, or similar fusion events on the gas giants?

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43312993)

I completely agree. I still don't think I really understand how stars work.

FTFY

I think the Electric Universe people might be on something...

FTFY

You're welcome ;^)

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (3, Informative)

Maury Markowitz (452832) | about a year and a half ago | (#43311509)

"I find Focus Fusion or some other non-billion-budget projects much more appealing"

Certainly, except they don't work, and can't.

You *are* aware of Rider's work on non-equilibrium plasmas, right? Here, read the last sentence of this abstract

http://pop.aip.org/resource/1/phpaen/v4/i4/p1039_s1?isAuthorized=no

It's been out for almost two decades and no one's come up with an answer. He had a follow-up paper that expanded the same principles to a much wider set of potential designs. Almost all of them won't work - not "it will be hard", WON'T.

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43312545)

I have news for you:

The Tokamak doesn't work.

And billions have been wasted trying to make it work for the past 50 years so it's time for a new idea completely outside of the box. And if that's Focus Fusion go with it. If it's Cold Fusion, go with it. If it's the Polywell, go with it.

Furthermore, the most pathetic thing I've seen on this forum regarding fusion, is that every single time another method of achieving controlled fusion (that's usually much cheaper) that isn't mainstream is brought forth it's immediately attacked as unworkable or absurd. Yet the ones doing the most attacking concede current fusion methods aren't working yet they refuse to consider other methods that are far cheaper because of group think and intellectual indolence.

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43313333)

is that every single time another method of achieving controlled fusion (that's usually much cheaper) that isn't mainstream is brought forth it's immediately attacked as unworkable or absurd.

Maybe it is because of the examples you picked, you picked ones that tend to suggest they were picked by someone with a pop-sci background learning about things through just website and marketing from fringe (and sometimes boarder line pseudoscience) researchers?

Alternative fusion designs are a dime a dozen, whereas ones that have some sense of scaling and understanding of their limitations and issues are less common. There already is on going research into designs besides tokamaks and spherical tokamaks, include stellerators, FRCs, RFPs, modernized attempts at mirror machines, some novel ideas using spheromaks, and some more out there designs such as MIF and levitated dipole.

The amount of work that goes into showing a design will scale up is rather quite daunting, and the field learned its less on getting overly optimistic that one design will be the end all to fusion problems. Still, young researchers sometimes come up with something that they think will take 5-10 years to get running. Then they split off into two groups. First are those that realize reality is a lot harsher and things are going to take a lot of hard work and that their original timeline, just like for every other design in the early phase, was overly optimistic. And then those that those that reject partially or wholly the reality of it and run off to drum up support on the internet, convincing forum goers to spread their word, that their design is perfect and only held back by mainstream status quo.

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43313979)

Tokamaks work fine. It's probably not the ideal approach, but it does in fact work. Unless you've got evidence that all the results of tokamak experiments across the world have been fabricated...

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43313689)

Analytical Fokker–Planck calculations are used to accurately determine the minimum power that must be recycled in order to maintain a plasma out of thermodynamic equilibrium despite collisions. For virtually all possible types of fusion reactors in which the major particle species are significantly non-Maxwellian or are at radically different mean energies, this minimum recirculating power is substantially larger than the fusion power. Barring the discovery of methods for recycling the power at exceedingly high efficiencies, grossly nonequilibrium reactors will not be able to produce net power.

Ah. So hydrogen bombs don't work.

Good to know; the DOE will save a lot of money by disposing of them.

Now, who's going to tell Stalin that the Tsar Bomba was a failure?

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43314303)

The fusion fuel in a hydrogen bomb is thermalized, so that paper doesn't contradict fusion based bombs...

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (1)

nitehawk214 (222219) | about a year and a half ago | (#43312425)

it's as barbaric as trying to create mass transit using 19-th century tram carriage propelled by small-scale nuclear blasts.

Yeah, but it would be awesome [wikipedia.org]

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43310845)

Any hope of laser-based fusion is a pipe dream, and always has been

NIF has a laundry list of problems (although some good research still comes out of it), but it should not be necessarily used as an example of state of the art for laser based inertial confinement fusion. Programs more directed at specifically producing fusion power concepts, like HiPER, are expected to do more with an order of magnitude cheaper price on equipment and much cheaper fueling, while specifically targeting high repetition rates. NIF really made no effort at running at a decent repetition rate, while components of HiPER will target 1 Hz and 10 Hz.

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (3, Informative)

Maury Markowitz (452832) | about a year and a half ago | (#43311587)

"although some good research still comes out of it"

What? A little stellar astrophysics and dense matter stuff, but we could get that same data other ways. Everything else is weapons related, and as NIF has demonstrated pretty clearly, wrong.

"Programs more directed at specifically producing fusion power concepts, like HiPER,"

I wrote the Wiki article on HiPER so I'm pretty familiar with it. It has no possibility of ever being an economical power producing device. The fast ignition process improves Q by about an order of magnitude, and so would solid-state lasers. So that's two orders of magnitude. We are five orders away from a practical Q. No one has any idea how to bridge that gap.

Note that Mike Dunne, who almost single-handedly ran HiPER (and a cool guy generally) left the project and is now at NIF. I believe HiPER is basically dead, but I haven't heard much one way or the other recently.

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43312071)

What? A little stellar astrophysics and dense matter stuff, but we could get that same data other ways. Everything else is weapons related, and as NIF has demonstrated pretty clearly, wrong.

It sounds like you are trying to argue that it wasn't worth the cost, which is not mutually exclusive with what I said that good research has come out of it. Some of the improvements in laser design, basic plasma physics and code validation have been solid research. Much of which is not particularly practical in the big picture, and I don't think NIF was worth the cost. But considering the current situation, that it has been built and is there to use, some of the research tries to make well with what we have.

The fast ignition process improves Q by about an order of magnitude, and so would solid-state lasers. So that's two orders of magnitude. We are five orders away from a practical Q.

From what I've seen, the Q has been about two orders of magnitude short of what is needed for whole system breakeven, and there is an expectation of two orders of magnitude improvement from fast ignition and from solid state lasers, plus at least another order of magnitude from improved pellet (and hohlraum for indirect) design. That is expected to bring it to more practical levels as far as Q alone. The economic practicality is a different matter, and while higher Q would help with that, alternatively bringing down the cost of the equipment and fueling would help. The philosophy being used by higher ups seems to be to get demonstrations of the equipment and basic principles, to get the a minimal practical Q, before improving the fueling costs. The few connections I have on the ICF side of the fence, and myself, disagree with that, but it at least produces some axillary research for laser design and basic plasma physics, whereas the fueling design not so much. There are some researchers eager to work on the fueling cost and think there is a lot of room for improvement, but enthusiasm for that from higher up seems lower. Nonetheless, I think General Atomics is still actively working on mass production of fueling pellets.

As far as I know, HiPER isn't dead with still quite a bit of effort being put into the laser design. They are still in the technology development and "risk reduction" phase and have a few concurrent efforts toward deciding on exactly what lasing medium to use. I hear more stuff about ongoing work related to Laser Megajoule and FIREX, but I think part of it is that such programs move faster than larger multinational projects like HiPER. And if what the Chinese researches I've talk to is true, that China is on the verge of dumping a lot of effort into non-tokamak fusion, they might end up beating all of them.

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43312639)

But that begs the question, why leave one failing (read: we finally threw the towel in) project for another failing (read: our egos won't let us throw the towel in yet) project.

What's funny to me (not ha-ha funny, you've-got-to-be-fscking-kidding-me funny) is the people at NIF keep talking about bullshit like alpha heating. 'Oh, the alpha particles are escaping and we are losing energy and if we just fix that things will get better.' When they haven't solved the problems with Rayleigh-Taylor Instabilities or the EoS problems. The computer simulations don't match up with the experimentation, and the modeling guys get blasted for it. It's so bizarre and borderline unethical science.

It's a runaway train but for some reason people are holding on a little too tight. The coolaid must be super sugary.

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43314047)

High performance pulsed laser technology with a variety of uses. But we have that now, and it's clear the whole laser fusion thing was a dead end, so...

Also, how solid is the physical justification behind fast ignition? I mean, the National Ignition Facility was expected in its National Ignition Campaign to...achieve ignition. It failed, and not due to underperforming lasers or anything, it's ignition itself that's more difficult than expected. I just have a suspicion that even your 5 horders of magnitude for fast ignition + solid state is optimistic...

Re:Actually, it's easy to understand (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43311539)

How can you know all that but still not know that it's means it is?

Good news: we're only 20 years from fusion power (2)

plopez (54068) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310747)

The bad news is that this has been the case since the 50s. Given the track record of fusion power, I wouldn't hold my breath. Given the rate of climate change we better develop other options fast.

Re:Good news: we're only 20 years from fusion powe (1)

FooAtWFU (699187) | about a year and a half ago | (#43311925)

We have the other options. The first one is natural gas. It's still climate-affecting but much less so than coal, and it can actually replace gasoline for motor vehicle use which is very helpful. The next one is nuclear. If it's really actually urgent, we should switch as much energy as possible to these two posthaste, because we can reduce more greenhouse-gas emissions faster than jumping straight to all-renewables solutions (which are more capital-intensive) and fusion doesn't work for us yet.

The good news: hydraulic fracturing means more natural gas can be had more readily than ever before.

Re:Good news: we're only 20 years from fusion powe (1)

Zyrill (700263) | about a year and a half ago | (#43313813)

It's not only a question of what's more convenient, there's also the question of risk allocation. I'm not familiar with fracking, but I'm sure there's concerns there, just like there are with nuclear fission. I still think fusion is a pretty cool concept. If we're really serious about developing fusion though, how about we stop bitching about a billion dollars and just pour enough money on projects that are worthwhile? We keep saving banks with that money every other day!

There's the example of W7-X in Germany, a stellarator design that'll never be energy efficient, but that's not the point I am making: they took ages designing and mismanaging everything until a science minister actually swung by the place, saw that the scientist were not getting anywhere because they were doing science and not managing the W7-X project, as it was. So the ministry scrapped the project and said: you can have all the funding back, plus a little extra, if you come up with a detailed plan how to build this thing in the next 7 or so years. If you miss a deadline, all your funding is gone. So the project went ahead, they got some actual project managers and consultants to work on the project and lo and behold: the system is almost finished. It just took enough pressure and some people that are actually trained for the job they're supposed to be doing to get that project humming!

So if we're serious about ITER, we need to put professional project managers in charge and not some consortium of scientists and politicians and bitch about who gets which share. The positions should go to the party most qualified for the job and not to a company in a country that didn't get contracts in the amount they poured in yet. If some countries want to pull out - fine, we just need to make sure we stop the finger pointing and the nationalistic attitude. If the Chinese can't provide quality steel, they shouldn't get those contracts! Working on that project is such a pain! Actually, fuck multinational projects, they're not going to work. If you want to build a power plant, devise a plan, get the best people working on the field to do it, secure the funding, put professionals in charge, check every two years if they're on track. That way, we might actually have fusion plants in 50 years. At the rate we're going now and with the projects currently under way, we never will.

TL;DR: multinational projects suck, too many economically motivated political bullshit; professional project managers should lead the project and not some senior scientist who has no clue about how to efficiently manage something on that scale; chance to get fusion plants in 50 years: >0.5. Chance to get fusion plants in 20 years with the currently employed system of running fusion projects: 1E-9.

Dense Plasma Focus (1)

trout007 (975317) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310813)

From an engineering standpoint the Dense Plasma Focus looks like the best option. I have no idea if it will really work but at least it looks like something that can be built and operated.

MagLIF (1)

backslashdot (95548) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310953)

MagLIF is the current front runner in my book. I expect ITER to succeed as well.

Re:MagLIF (1)

meta-monkey (321000) | about a year and a half ago | (#43312823)

I vote polywell.

Re:MagLIF (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43313181)

Reality may vote differently.

"Fusion is the energy source of the future... (3, Interesting)

Tokolosh (1256448) | about a year and a half ago | (#43310997)

... and it always will be." - old saying.

As a counterbalance: Clarke's Three Laws:

1. When a distinguished but elderly scientist states that something is possible, he is almost certainly right. When he states that something is impossible, he is very probably wrong.
2. The only way of discovering the limits of the possible is to venture a little way past them into the impossible.
3. Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.

Re:"Fusion is the energy source of the future... (1)

FooAtWFU (699187) | about a year and a half ago | (#43311871)

I don't think any distinguished elder scientist is calling fusion impossible, but rather calling the current approach to fusion unworkable and wasteful.

NIF is a jobs program. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43311497)

Read the book "Sun in a Bottle: The Strange History of Fusion and the Science of Wishful Thinking" by Charles Seife.

The upshot in the book is that NIF officially has nothing to do with commercial fusion energy research, that it's about research into high energy plasma physics with applications towards thermonuclear weapons. But the real reason for it's existence is as a jobs program for high energy researchers, who, if not occupied by working on the thing, might get bored and go to work for China or Iran on their weapons program.

Re:NIF is a jobs program. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43311561)

How can you know all that but still not know that it's means it is?

This exact comment has already been posted. Try to be more original...

I can't, until people learn the dead simple fact that it's means it is.

just like press release from 1960's (1)

peter303 (12292) | about a year and a half ago | (#43311611)

"Unlimited fusion power is only five years away"

Re:just like press release from 1960's (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43312677)

"Unlimited fusion power is only five years away"

Let me guess, that's how long it would take to reach the sun?

Re:just like press release from 1960's (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43314131)

yes, and those years are 2017, 2029, 2040, 2048, and 2060.

NIF did come up with some cool stuff (1)

sandytaru (1158959) | about a year and a half ago | (#43311779)

They figured out how to extrude rubies as giant sheets. I saw them when I went to LLNL a few years back. The laser amplification system they developed is very cool, even if otherwise completely useless.

Re:NIF did come up with some cool stuff (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43312145)

The larger redish looking sheets used in the laser amplifiers are neodymium doped glass, not ruby. Nd:YAG and Nd:Glass are much nicer, imo, to work with than ruby based lasers because they are four level instead of three level media. Neodymium glass is used for its color in consumer products [wikipedia.org] from time to time too, just not as high quality.

Fusion (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43313785)

We know it works, all you have to do is look up at the night's sky.
The only question is, how small can we get it?
What is the smallest viable star we can keep in a cage?

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