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The EPA Carbon Plan: Coal Loses, But Who Wins?

BeaverCleaver Re:Last time I voted... (268 comments)

So, around 0.1% of the deaths from hitting wind turbines as from crashing into buildings. Birds are good at flying. There's a pretty strong selection pressure in favour of birds with enough coordination not to crash into things.

about 2 months ago
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The EPA Carbon Plan: Coal Loses, But Who Wins?

BeaverCleaver Re:And monopolies suck money out of people (268 comments)

And then our new prime minister can point to the high electricity bills and say "See? It's the result of carbon pricing! Let's dismantle carbon pricing! Let's allow the energy monopoly to do whatever they want!"

about 2 months ago
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The EPA Carbon Plan: Coal Loses, But Who Wins?

BeaverCleaver Re:Last time I voted... (268 comments)

Got any references for those "bird kill" numbers?

Early wind turbines, built in response to the 1970s oil crisis, were indeed a hazard to birds. However new wind turbines are bigger and spin at lower RPM, so they are easier for birds to see and avoid.

I don't know about the USA, but most countries also require and environmental impact statement before building wind turbines. These days, if they are proposed right in the middle of an area with high golden eagle populations, they don't get off the drawing board.

about 2 months ago
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FCC Website Hobbled By Comment Trolls Incited By Comedian John Oliver

BeaverCleaver Re: Huh? (144 comments)

As you say, "not just the US." He did a great piece about Tony abbott, the Australian prime minister. Find it on YouTube. Or don't, it's embarrassing.

about 3 months ago
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Man Builds DIY Cellphone Using Raspberry Pi

BeaverCleaver Not to criticise his efforts but. .. (83 comments)

I built one using a picaxe + GSM module in 2010. It was pretty challenging fitting enough AT commands in the limited eeprom on the picaxe. Worked great on the protoboard but I never bothered making a PCB for what is really a pretty pointless device. Even in 2010 I could have bought a better phone for $20. GSM modules are really useful: using one to make a phone seems like a waste! They're much more interesting for things like remote monitoring or smart SMS-enabled devices...

about 4 months ago
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Intel Releases $99 'MinnowBoard Max,' an Open-Source Single-Board Computer

BeaverCleaver Re:A bigger x86 BeagleBone Black? (97 comments)

I got one from Adafruit - they run out all the time but seem to get new stock frequently. I've basically given up on Element14 though - I ordered from them in November. First the ETA kept slipping back, now they don't even show an ETA. It's a sorry state of affairs when Adafruit can ship one to me in Australia, from New York, about ten times faster than the local supplier (and still counting!)

about 5 months ago
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Intel Releases $99 'MinnowBoard Max,' an Open-Source Single-Board Computer

BeaverCleaver A bigger x86 BeagleBone Black? (97 comments)

The $50 BeagleBone Black has many of these features and more GPIO, but lacks RAM and has only one CPU. The ODROID series can be specced with multiple ARM cores. This "Minnow" seems like the next step up, for users who really need SATA, lots of RAM and multiple x86 cores. There's probably a big enough niche for portable/cheaper PC-based hardware for this to find traction, but for anything that doesn't need x86 or huge RAM there are cheaper options. I just hope the supply issues with the BeagleBone Black get sorted out soon!

about 5 months ago
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Canadian Health Scientists Resort To Sneaker Net After Funding Slashed

BeaverCleaver Re:To the dump!? (168 comments)

I remember the same thing in a a county library in Colorado, except the library would sell their unwanted books at ridiculously low prices. Older reference books worth hundreds would go for a dollar or two. A treasure trove indeed. Hopefully the the books sent to the dump were at least offered to the public first!

I should also add that a local university library near where I live now recently sent a bunch of their old books to the dump (except the ones I fished out of the dumpster) Shame on you, University Of Canberra.

about 7 months ago
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U.S. Teenagers Are Driving Much Less: 4 Theories About Why

BeaverCleaver Re:Boring cars (635 comments)

Tinkering with cars is still fun. With an arduino and a few other components you could modify injector pulses [in real time!], build a new immobiliser, add water injection, build a GPS trip computer, active aerodynamics... all this is just off the top of my head. Sure the skills required are different from 30 years ago, but car modification is alive and well.

Let's also bear in mind that with modern cars you don't _have_ to learn so much maintenance. Re-grinding valve seats, decarbonising, so many "routine maintenance" chores are now so infrequent that they become pretty much unnecessary. Hell, my 1990 japanese hatchback has done over 330 000km (205k miles) and is still on the original clutch, gearbox, brake discs... This is a reasonably high-performance (for 1990) car - all-wheel drive, intercooled turbo... my point is, with advances in materials and manufacturing tolerances, most mechanical parts can be relied on to Just Work for hundreds of thousands of miles. This doesn't mean that there's nothing that a guy in his backyard can work on, just that the projects will be different. I am glad for the change - I'd rather be working on something new, than adjusting my points gap again, just because it's 3000 miles since the last time I had to do it.

about 7 months ago
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U.S. Teenagers Are Driving Much Less: 4 Theories About Why

BeaverCleaver Re:Murica Fuck yea! (635 comments)

All good points, and valid. However there were also some VERY shady deals to deliberately dismantle public transport on the USA, often misusing anti-monopoly legislation to gut the streetcar (tram) networks.

This is especially evident in LA, where the freeways have taken over the same routes that the old streetcars used to.

Yes, the example above is familiar - it was used [with some historical accuracy, ironically] in the movie "Who Framed Roger Rabbit" http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0096438

More on the "streetcar scandal" at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_American_streetcar_scandal

about 7 months ago
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Australian Team Working On Engines Without Piston Rings

BeaverCleaver Re:Let me be the first to say (368 comments)

European fuel typically has a higher octane rating than fuel sold in the USA, therefore they can tune their engines more aggressively, therefore they can get more power out of a smaller displacement engine.

about 8 months ago
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World War II's Last Surviving Doolittle Raiders Make Their Final Toast

BeaverCleaver Re:Thank You Veterans (211 comments)

US soldiers these days are serving because they chose to. There isn't conscription or a "draft" to force people to become soldiers and enforce unjust foreign policy. So no, I don't accord them any more respect than any other citizen who chooses to work for an employer whose actions are dubious.

I am concerned, however, about how bad conditions must be in the USA that getting sent overseas to (possibly) get killed while enforcing unjust foreign policy seems like sensible choice of employment for so many young people.

about 10 months ago
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Man In Tesla Model S Fire Explains What Happened

BeaverCleaver Re:Stupid idiot messages (526 comments)

Some cars flash their "check engine" light in specific sequences to indicate certain issues. So if it flashes, say, 3 long flashes followed by 4 short, you can look up the code "34" in the manual and get an idea of what the problem is. I know Mazda (used to?) do this.

about 10 months ago
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The First Phone You Can Actually Bend: LG's G Flex

BeaverCleaver Re: It's on it's way from Apple, mark my words! (92 comments)

Gorilla glass, yes. But isn't the "retina" display just a high-resolution screen? Like, the obvious next step in the steady increase in resolution of mobile phone screens that had been going on for a decade?

about 10 months ago
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Police Use James-Bond-Style GPS Bullet

BeaverCleaver stealing a gps (210 comments)

If you drive away with the tracker attached to your car, can the cops charge you with stealing it?

about 10 months ago
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Stung By Scandal, South Korea Weighs Up Cost of Curbing Nuclear Power

BeaverCleaver Re:Let's go BACKWARDS! (200 comments)

Yeah, and how much profit does the fire department make?

They are called PUBLIC utilities because they are there to serve the public. See also: roads, sanitation, education...

about 10 months ago
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Obama Administration Refuses To Overturn Import Ban On Samsung Products

BeaverCleaver And the winner is... (298 comments)

Meanwhile, the only people who profit from this are the lawyers. On both sides.

about a year ago
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Excess Coffee May Be Linked To Early Death

BeaverCleaver Re:causation versus correlation (220 comments)

There's some good research that suggest coffee consumption is linked to protection from cirrhosis of the liver (important for those who like their alcohol as well as their coffee!)

ARCH INTERN MED/ VOL 166, JUNE 12, 2006 WWW.ARCHINTERNMED.COM

Posted from a laptop with a dying battery, excuse the poor link.

1 year,12 days

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