It's True: Some People Just Don't Like Music
First question on the quiz: "When I share music with someone I feel a special connection with that person."
Are they thinking friendship, love, or co-defendant in a copyright infringement case?
Stanford Team Tries For Better Wi-Fi In Crowded Buildings
"Software Defined Networking", as Stanford uses the term, means a centrally controlled virtual circuit switching system. Every time someone makes a "call" (a new IP/port IP/port tuple), the first packet is routed to Master Control, which decides if they get to make the call, logs the call, decides whether the call gets wiretapped or filtered, and chooses the priority given to the call. All the routers involved are then issued instructions from Master Control on how to route that call.
(Yeah, they don't use the term "call". But that's what it is, really.)
Goodbye, "net neutrality". Goodbye, flat rate billing. Goodbye, distributed control. This puts everything you do on the Internet under central control and makes it billable.
Jewish School Removes Evolution Questions From Exams
That's not mainstream Judaism. That's a Haredi institution. They're not just anti-evolution. They're anti-TV, anti-Internet, anti-movies, anti-newspaper reading, anti birth control, anti public library usage, anti knowing the language of the country they're in, anti wearing colors, anti female equality... The sect is set up to give kids no option other than to stay in the Haredi community and overdose on religion for their entire lives.
It's a lot like Shia Islam, down to the beards. There's even a Haredi group in Canada that wants to move to Iran because Canada won't let them abuse their kids.
RadioShack To Close 1,100 Stores
Yeah, but you could probably sort it descending by unit price, and the most expensive item would be suitable for use in a space probe and probably still be cheaper than what Radio Shack would want. Or just hit page down once and find really nice stuff for a reasonable price. If the specs aren't demanding you don't need to worry about whether it is pulse-withstanding, flame-retardant, moisture-resistant, and kills zombies in a 5' radius.
Very close. At Radio Shack you get 5 resistors for $1.49. They're just ordinary 5% carbon resistors. At Digi-Key, a flame-retardant, moisture-resistant, MIL-SPEC, 1%, failure rate 0.001% resistor will cost $0.39 each. If you go all the way to the bottom at Digi-Key, the very last resistor matches Radio Shack specs. It costs $0.00494 each. Flame-retardant, too.
If you want an Arduino Uno board, Radio Shack wants $29.99. And they're out of stock on line. Digi-Key's price is $28.57, and they have over 4000 in stock. Radio Shack is selling only the older non-surface-mount version. Digi-Key has both, and the newer version with surface-mounted parts is only $26.80. So even on pure hobbyist stuff, Digi-Key wins.
So the demise of Radio Shack isn't going to inconvenience electronics hobbyists.
The Ephemerality and Reality of the Jetpack
What 3D printers were used in the 80s?
3D Systems was founded in 1986. Stereolithography is older than many people think it is. Early systems produced rather fragile objects, but product designers in the late 1980s were using them to make product models.
RadioShack To Close 1,100 Stores
Retail electronics parts stores are dead. Even in Silicon Valley, we barely have any left.
Digi-Key used to have a minimum order of $25. But they dropped that a few years ago. You can order one resistor from them and it will ship the same day by first class mail, in a small padded envelope. This pretty much solved the parts problem for people who know what they want.
The Digi-Key site can be overwhelming to hobbyists. Want a 100 ohm, 1/4W resistor for through-hole mounting? Radio Shack has one type. Digi-Key has 225 different types. That's part of what keeps Radio Shack and Jameco in business. If Digi-Key or Mouser ever sets up a hobbyist-friendly front end site to their inventory, the last need for the little guys will disappear.
Ask Slashdot: Modern Web Development Applied Science Associates Degree?
There's nothing wrong with running a trade school. But
"associate of applied science in modern web development" is a bit much. Still, you can now get an "associate degree" in heating, ventilating, and air conditioning. No classes in thermodynamics, but training in useful skills including brazing, soldering, and plumbing.
Invention Makes Citibikes Electric
You can drive an electric moped in NYC. Probably cheaper than this thing, too. New York State recognizes three classes of scooters/mopeds (under 20MPH, 20-30MPH, and 30-40MPH top speed) plus motorcycles. The license requirements increase with the max speed. All have lights and turn signals, and a helmet is required.
With NYC's traffic density, this isn't unreasonable.
Invention Makes Citibikes Electric
The point is no one needed 3D printing for something so fucking obvious and simple it was made a hundred years ago.
Right. The parts should be banged out on an injection moulding machine. Even the little injection moulder at TechShop could make those parts at the rate of about one a minute. Production machines are far faster. You'd have to cut aluminum dies first, which takes hours on a CNC mill, but then you can bang out thousands of parts.
Really, though, you're paying for the battery. Batteries for electric bikes costs $500 to $2000.
The Ephemerality and Reality of the Jetpack
A big problem with jetpacks is that human ankles are weak landing gear. You can't do a parachute landing fall while wearing a jetpack; you have to do a standing landing. With all the mass of the gear on your back.
The other big problem is that rocket systems have a short flight time, and jet engine systems are too expensive. The jet engine powered backpack worked well, but cost too much. That used a small Williams jet engine. Williams International has tried and tried to make small jet engines cheaper. So have many others. Unfortunately, that's a very hard problem, which is why general aviation is still piston-powered. Below small-bizjet size, jet engines don't seem to get much cheaper as they get smaller. There was a big effort about a decade ago to develop "very light jets", but they ended up costing well over $1 million, most of that being engine cost.
So it can be done, and it has been done, but it just doesn't work very well.
Whole Foods: America's Temple of Pseudoscience
Creation museum: customers tend to be poor, relatively uneducated, and don't understand basic science.
Whole Foods: customers are almost exclusively well-off, expensively educated, and don't understand basic science.
I know. I sometimes go to Whole Foods for the rotisserie chicken, which is quite good, but that's about all I get there. The homeopathy boom is just silly. "Organic" is mostly an excuse for overpricing vegetables. The production cost differential is about 20% max. The retail cost differential is 50-100%.
Trader Joe's has equally good vegetables, nuts, grains, etc. without the Whole Foods ego trip, and with better prices.
Rolls Royce Developing Drone Cargo Ships
I don't see a big win here. It doesn't save that much labor. If it allowed using more small ships instead of giant ones, it might be worth something, but the economies of scale for post-Panamax container ships aren't really related to crew size.
Still, automated operations at ports have come a long way. Several big ports use big automated guided vehicles for container movement, and many container cranes are now fully automated. See this video for a modern port operation.
Inside Chris Anderson's Open-Source Drone Factory
More like 10 years ago. Here's a video of a small farm with robotic milking. The cows like it and are healthier.
How About a Megatons To Megawatts Program For US Nuclear Weapons?
There's no shortage of reactor-grade uranium in the US.
U.S. Enrichment is planning a bankruptcy due to lack of demand. URENCO's centrifuge plant in New Mexico is in full operation. New centrifuge plants are orders of magnitude cheaper to run than the old gaseous-diffusion plants like K-25 at Oak Ridge. They're also much smaller; K-25 had several mile-long buildings, while URENCO's plant is about the size of two Walmarts.
Safety Measures Fail To Stop Fukushima Plant Leaks
TEPCO still doesn't have adequate water-processing capacity Fukushima. They installed three units of the "advanced liquid processing system" (which is basically a big ion-exchange resin water purifier) in 2012, and they are still not working reliably. Failures are occuring for dumb reasons: "TEPCO officials believe the cause of that problem was due to a failure to remove a rubber pad from the tank, leading to a blockage in the system." On another occasion, they had to shut down because a crane failed.
Toshiba has overall charge of the project.
Why a major Japanese company is having so much trouble with routine industrial tasks is not clear. As a result of all these processing problems, Fukushima has far too much contaminated water in temporary storage.
The process won't remove tritium, but that, at least, has a decay life of only 12 years, and it's not concentrated by biological processes like strontium and cesium, so dumping tritum-contaminated water isn't too bad.)
Ubuntu 14.04 Brings Back Menus In Application Windows
I can live with them or without them, but they need to pick one way to do it and stick with that.
Ask Slashdot: Should I Get Google Glass?
"You have been selected to receive our exclusive offer! For only $1500...!"
It's a commercial product. Soon (maybe already) anyone with the money will be able to buy one. Probably for less money.
If you want a Google Glass invite code, there are plenty of them on eBay, all with 0 bids. $8.99 or best offer is the going rate for Buy It Now.
Are Bankers Paid Too Much? Are Technology CEOs?
Google has two kinds of stock, A shares and B shares. A shares get one vote. B shares get 10 votes. The founders have all the B shares. Facebook has a similar setup.
The NYSE used to prohibit multiple kinds of stock for listed stocks, back when the NYSE had more clout. (The exception was Ford, which was grandfathered in. Ford has a two-tier stock scheme that has kept the Ford family in control for a century. That's why Ford didn't go bankrupt when GM and Chrysler did. A bankrupcy would erase that deal.) But the NYSE caved a few years ago. Now it's common with tech issuers.
Amazon Coins and How the Definition of 'Crypto-Currency' Is Getting Too Loose
Yes, there's a whole prepaid purchase industry out there, and whole racks of their cards at most retail outlets. This is just another one.
Burger King had the most honest description: "Pay now so you can eat later".
Psychologists: Internet Trolls Are Narcissistic, Psychopathic, and Sadistic
I'm a bit bothered by the use of Amazon's Mechanical Turk as a source of survey participants. That's by its nature a group of people with lots of free time and few marketable skills. That's a likely place to find trolls.
Slashdot's moderation system seem to do a good job of preventing trolling. I just hope the Dice management doesn't break it, in search of higher "social engagement" or something.
Animats has no journal entries.