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Comments

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Winter weather this year has been ...

BattyMan Re:Australia! (439 comments)

As I said above, that's no big deal.
My guitarist concurs. It's not really hot until you're past 105.

Apparently this 40C stuff is coming off the interior with low humidity? One of the standing jokes here in Arizona is the postcard of a dried, bleached animal skeleton (it really doesn't matter what - cow, vulture, human, WTH) laying out in the desert under the blazing sun. The caption reads: "But it's a _dry_ heat!".

more than 3 years ago
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Winter weather this year has been ...

BattyMan Re:Now, _that_'s funny! (439 comments)

My (American) wife likens it to opening the oven door: storm-force gusts of air at >100 F and 5% humidity. Bloody brilliant for drying your clothes: by the time you've hung the last item on the line, the first one you hung is bone-dry ;)

See that's the climate in Phoenix - from about Easter to Halloween. At least you guys have the sense not to live there. I don't know who decided this was a worthwhile place to build a city. The natives abandoned it 1000 years ago...

more than 3 years ago
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Winter weather this year has been ...

BattyMan Now, _that_'s funny! (439 comments)

As I speak its 40 degrees outside in Melbourne. 39 tomorrow. My trick for cycle commuting is to jump in the shower in my cycling clothes right before I go, then pour most of my water on my skin when I feel hot. The body can only use 300ml per hour anyway and I carry about a litre.

40 degress and you're drenching yourself down? That's a tactic reserved for when you're too dehydrated to sweat anymore!
Oh, wait:

And for those few American readers of this site... that 40 is in Celcius - so it's over 100 degrees.

Right.
Lessee, another attempt at command-line bc.....
~$ echo "(40 *9/5 +32)" | bc // Knew there hadda be a way.
104
HAAAAAAhahahahahahah!!!!! As soon as you get moving, 104 is fairly comfortable.
I find 105 to be a sort of tipping point. Anything beyond that gets pretty bad. YMMV.
Try 114 or so - uh, ~$ echo "((114-32) *5/9)" | bc
45
  That's enough to cause little prickly sensations all over your body. I don't bother with the shower, because to walk outside in that covers me in sweat immediately. (Probably a conditioned response. Putting on my helmet, indoors inside the AC, will do the same.)

I agree that you cannot absorb water anywhere near fast enough to keep up with that kinda loss. 300ml/hour? I suck down well over a liter (2 extended-top bicycle bottles) in ten miles (maybe 45 minutes, in my old age), and have never lasted more than a couple of hours past 110. By that time we're looking at heavy dehydration, heat exhaustion and eventual heatstroke. On a Century ride (that's 100 _miles_)(in the spring, when it was only 100F) my pop had the foresight to weigh himself first. After riding all day and swilling water as fast as he could he'd lost ten pounds (about 5Kg).

And I imagine Melbourne is fairly near the coast? It was my understanding that temperatures in Oz (at least in the outback) pushed 120(F).
~$ echo "((120-32) *5/9)" | bc
48
Now that's HOT.
So if you wanna see what real, _deadly_ heat is, take a ride inland tomorrow.

more than 3 years ago
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Why the First Cowboy To Draw Always Gets Shot

BattyMan Practice is a BIG deal (398 comments)

for The Fast Draw(tm).

The Hot Shots hit balloons at 3 or 4 yards (I don't think it was 7?), from the holster, with single-action, in way under a quarter-second. Winning time of the meet I saw on TV was, IIRC, 118 mS. Shots are fired from the hip, without any time-consuming ritual of lifting the sights to your eye.

While this is nowhere near as fast as Gene Wilder in Blazing Saddles, you will NOT react to this guy fast enough to avoid getting shot. If he draws first, you're dead.

more than 4 years ago
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Why the First Cowboy To Draw Always Gets Shot

BattyMan Re:Unforgivable! (398 comments)

The vast majority of news stories I've read in my lifetime about 'gunfights' involve lots of rounds being expended & not many hits. Lots and lots of stories about the first shot being fired, and that missing completely. Any studies of several hundred modern 'gunfights' that say otherwise? Any studies at all?

Well, they won't be acknowledged around here, and they're hardly _studies_, but there are plenty of _News_Stories_ about reasonably accurate firearms use. These stories prove that it is possible to hit bad guys under stress, and undescore the fact that these criminals do NOT want a fight, they _want_ an easy score. When confronted with deadly force, they:

A. RUN AWAY!!! (often wounded)

B. Die.

C. (Occasionally) make return fire.

This makes a firearm (any firearm) that_you_can_connect_with a very valuable thing in any gunfight.

This guy managed 1 for 4, but that was enough:
http://nl.newsbank.com/nl-search/we/Archives?p_action=doc&p_docid=12A808418303B698&p_docnum=1

There are plenty of stories like this. I'd cite more, but it's bedtime.

"Get off a shot _fast_. This startles your opponent, and gives you time to make your second shot perfect."
-- Lazarus Long

more than 4 years ago
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Of the following online annoyances, I most despise ...

BattyMan Spam (507 comments)

Destroyer of Usenet, scourge of email, spam now accounts for 99.999% of all non-WWW Internet traffic.

But I don't _need_ V1@grA!

more than 3 years ago
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University Fails to Find Man Who Hasn't Seen Porn

BattyMan Re:Seriously though (32 comments)

BYU has, I believe consistently rated _really_ high (like, top five) in Playboy Magazine's polls of the Top Party Schools (in teh US) over many years. I can assure you they have porn there.

more than 4 years ago
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Microsoft Tries To Censor Bing Vulnerability

BattyMan In other news: /. now moderated by 'tards (275 comments)

I swear. Moderators can't read a /sarcasm tag anymore?

Posting anonymously, for obvious reasons....

more than 4 years ago
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When Libertarians Attack Free Software

BattyMan Really? (944 comments)

...all monopolies are created thanks to force applied by the government.

Then explain to us - which government regulation created the Micro$oft monopoly?
The barriers to entry that they hide behind were certainly not created by the government, most are the result of exclusive contracts - with many hidden from the public (and the market, and even the _courts_) by NDAs.

Do you believe that contracts should not be enforced by government?
I personally would entertain the argument that NDAs are evil, and might be a good thing to outlaw, but I'm sure someone can come up with an example of a situation where they're essential.

I do not believe that ALL monopoly is the government's fault, though of course one certainly may be caused by regulatory action.

about 5 years ago
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When Libertarians Attack Free Software

BattyMan I think that one deserves a mod point (944 comments)

That's the crux of this discussion.

Libertarians should strive for MINIMAL regulation, in the interest of providing Fair Competition in a Free Marketplace.

Over-regulation, OTOH, is even worse than none at all, because it gives arbitrary control to some regulatory body which probably doesn't deserve it.

about 5 years ago
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Favorite seasonal transition?

BattyMan I Live In Phoenix, You Insensitive Clod! (451 comments)

We have 2 seasons here: "summer" (80-100F) and "hell" (105-120F).
Right now we're transitioning from hell to summer (and this is my personal favorite). It's a really nice day out there today, only 100. Last night was _really_ nice, it got down to 85. It was only 95 when I drove to work this morning.

more than 5 years ago
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Which Breakthrough Is Most Likely?

BattyMan I guess it depends (903 comments)

on the value of intelligence you want to define as "human-level".

Considering some of the blather I see posted on teh Interwebs nowdays, that's not a real high bar, and will probably be achieved soon by machines (if it has not already).

more than 5 years ago
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GPS-Based System For Driving Tax Being Field Tested

BattyMan GPS isn't all that tough to jam... (891 comments)

And I could build a portable gyzmo to do just that.
Of course it'd be illegal in many states (as radar detectors already are), but there must be some way around that.

It'd fsck yer [GPS] navigation, but who needs navigation if it's gonna be taxed?

more than 5 years ago
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What Free IDE Do You Use?

BattyMan And here you still are with your buzzwords (1055 comments)

Well then why don't you just explain it to us?

Your blanket statement that Free software somehow simply, automagically loses out to V$ in the areas of "usability & productivity" is an unsubstanstiated crock. Emacs is a mature, highly polished, extremely flexible/customizable IDE and the product of twenty-five years of user-driven development. It was probably the _first_ IDE. Vi is more tightly focused, but also an efficient, highly usable tool. Both have large, experienced, and fanatically loyal user bases.

Having used both, and Visual Studio, I _strongly_ prefer emacs and vi. You can't simply tell me that "they aren't usable". I find them more logical, efficient, productive (as in: faster) and _portable_ as well. I want you to explain just what you think makes V$ _soooo_ much more "usable and productive".

With the wealth of alternatives available (let's not leave out Eclipse, since it seems pretty popular too, as well as Free), I can see no reason to tolerate the moral bankruptcy of the factors of Visual Studio. But you don't want to talk about _that_.

So, enlighten us. What's so all-fired "usable" about V$? What makes it so superior to, say, emacs? What does it have going for it besides its Imperial market monopoly, with the accompanying shills, "analysts", and astroturfers?

And bear in mind that I place a great distinction between "User Friendly" and "Beginner Friendly". For "Beginner Friendly", I'll agree that the Imperial "Tools" are da bomb. Not being a beginner, however, "Beginner Friendly" is not what I want.

more than 5 years ago
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What Free IDE Do You Use?

BattyMan Some of us build more than just Windows apps (1055 comments)

and if you think that emacs, and all those vi variants for that matter, aren't usable and productive just because _you_ can't work them, that sounds quite ignorant to me. Several of us here find emacs (and vi*) highly productive. IMNSHO emacs, gcc and Perl are the "killer apps" of *nix (even if they are ported to the monopoly platform - they lose something in the move).

If you think that the software monopolist is morally acceptable, I suggest you go read this, and this, and this. And then go develop yer Micro$oft apps on V$ (if you can still stomach them). See if I care.

The application I'm presently working on is actually targeted for Winbloze XP (against _my_ will). That doesn't keep me from writing it in Perl/Tk with emacs. When it's done, I expect it to run equally well in any environment (that supports Perl & Tk, which is A LOT). Try that with Visual Studio. I bet you can't, because V$ was deliberately engineered to make it as difficult as possible to develop for any non-Imperial target.

When I abandoned the Evil Empire, V$, VC++, MFC, and all of that rot in favor of Free software, I was overjoyed not only by the ideology but by the quality of the tools. I've never looked back.

And since when did astroturfers get mod points?

more than 5 years ago

Submissions

BattyMan hasn't submitted any stories.

Journals

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Just saw the Serenity trailer on Sci-Fi.

BattyMan BattyMan writes  |  more than 9 years ago

River Tam: Killing machine!

No real surprise, there.

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Follow-up to the Propane==Danger discussion

BattyMan BattyMan writes  |  more than 10 years ago

The other night I saw the MythBusters(Danger Will Robinson! Flash _everywhere_ at discovery.com)_try_ to mix air & gasoline fumes and get their mix to ignite. They hadda work awfully hard, and the resulting "explosion" somewhat nonviolently flattened their plexiglass-and-duct-tape enclosure. I'll write to them and see if they'd be interested in trying it with Propane. Any reader actually _conducting_ such an experiment is invited to report his results, or at least link to them, here.

Also the Teutuls had their carburetor builder hang around and _make_sure_ his fireplug carburetor fed the Fire bike properly. The carburetor is obviously the touchiest part of an initial custom bike lightup.

Even in something _designed_ to burn gasoline, it doesn't always go easily.

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