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Comments

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Amazon Seeks US Exemption To Test Delivery Drones

Billy the Mountain Re:won't work (155 comments)

Yeah! An' an' a free three year stay in th' crowbar ho-tel!

about 2 months ago
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Blueprints For Taming the Climate Crisis

Billy the Mountain Re:Too late. Fission 80,000 times safer than hydro (389 comments)

Yes fusion is the energy of tomorrow. And the best fusion reactor we have is called the sun. And we can begin harnessing it whenever we want.

about 2 months ago
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Google Fiber: No Charge For Peering, No Fast Lanes

Billy the Mountain Restoring Net Neutrality (238 comments)

All it takes to restore net neutrality is enough people to boycott those businesses that seek to compromise it.

about 3 months ago
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The Lithuanian Mob Was Smuggling Cigarettes Into Russia With a Drone

Billy the Mountain Re:Russia to Lithuania? (81 comments)

Maybe they WERE smuggling cigarettes into Russia, realized, OMFG! they were losing money like mad and NOW are smuggling cigarettes from Russia to Lithuania.

about 4 months ago
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Future of Cars: Hydrogen Fuel Cells, Or Electric?

Billy the Mountain Re:...What? (659 comments)

Except that most hydrogen comes from reforming of natural gas which isn't nearly as bad a coal. (still results in CO2) But otherwise you are correct.

about 4 months ago
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Future of Cars: Hydrogen Fuel Cells, Or Electric?

Billy the Mountain Hydrogen's Infrastructure Problem (659 comments)

Hydrogen has a huge infrastructure problem. Ie., what do you do when you need some electricty to charge something? Reach over and plug it in. Vs. what do you do when you need some hydrogen. Uh, yeah, right.

about 4 months ago
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Microsoft Finally Selling Xbox One Without Kinect

Billy the Mountain Re:LOL (227 comments)

Yeah but I would think that unbundling would be a form of backpeddling.

about 4 months ago
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Mathematical Model Suggests That Human Consciousness Is Noncomputable

Billy the Mountain Sounds Non-Deterministic to me (426 comments)

Isn't noncomputable the same as saying non-deterministic? There are lots of non-deterministic computer operations where the result is based on a database query or a call to a web page where you can't know in advance what the result will be and you also don't really know how long it will take to get the information (if at all).

about 4 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Beginner To Intermediate Programming Projects?

Billy the Mountain Selenium (172 comments)

Hard to suggest because you don't have a stated goal.

I think you would be challenged by working with selenium and webdriver to control web browsers for developing web tests. This will involve learning xpath which is recommended knowledge if you don't know it. This skillset is marketable, I might add.

about 4 months ago
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Mathematicians Use Mossberg 500 Pump-Action Shotgun To Calculate Pi

Billy the Mountain Here's how I do it (311 comments)

When I use a Mossberg 500 Pump-Action shotgun to calculate pi I measure the circumference of the barrel and divide it by the diameter. When measured carefully, it get's pretty damn close to 3.14.

about 5 months ago
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How Did Bill Nye Become the Science Guy?

Billy the Mountain Speed Walker! (220 comments)

My favorite comedy from Bill Nye was Speeeeeeed Walker, a super hero that always adhered to the rules of the International Speed Walking Association: Heal Toe! Heal Toe!

about 5 months ago
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Engineers Invent Acoustic Equivalent of One-Way Glass

Billy the Mountain Thanks Dr. Obvious (114 comments)

Of course you can eliminate all sounds, duh. You just have to make sure the fans are blowing supersonic air. Sound can't travel upstream supersonically.

about 7 months ago
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Roadable, Vertical-Takeoff Aircraft Is Eager To Hit the Battlefield

Billy the Mountain I for one.... (87 comments)

This is pretty much the future of where helicopter technology is going to go, I think. Eight small propellers are way cheaper and simpler than one huge complex rotor system. The main downside is no autorotation in the case of engine failure (maybe a back-up parachute will be the solution).

Also the eight engines will probably be replaced by a single or pair of turbines driving generators and then eight small motors will used to drive the propellers/rotors. That reduces complexity and allows the rotors to be controlled electrically/electronically for precise control.

about 8 months ago
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Google Launches Android Automotive Consortium

Billy the Mountain Yeah! Finally! (117 comments)

"I can't come in to work today because my car has a virus" becomes a legitimate excuse.

about 8 months ago
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Amazon Reveals "Prime Air", Their Plans For 30-minute Deliveries By Drone

Billy the Mountain ADS-B and bat behavior (397 comments)

FAA has a requirement that will be coming up for virtually all aircraft called ADS-B. It's basically a self-imposed tracking system that broadcasts your position in all three axes and your ground speed. It's in an unencrypted form so that any aircraft in flight can receive positions from nearby aircraft. My guess is the FAA will mandate that the drones be so equipped.

Another observation: Here in Texas where there a pockets of huge populations of Mexican free tail bats, there is an interesting thing that happens when they emerge to forage on insects. They all stream out following each other in a main column (that can actually be seen on radar) and then branch out sort of resembling a tree. It would probably make sense for package distribution to follow a similar model where the route is not a straight line but a predictable route. Outgoing drones flow along in a pre-set column and incoming drones flow along in another distinct column. Bats on radar

BTM

about 8 months ago
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Duke Univ. Device Converts Stray Wireless Energy Into Electricity For Charging

Billy the Mountain Re:Too bad (216 comments)

Ohm my god!

about 10 months ago
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Largest US Power Storing Solar Array Goes Live

Billy the Mountain Re:WTF (377 comments)

Do you think they vent the steam to the atmosphere? Or do you think they might put it in a closed loop so they can reuse the water?

about a year ago
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Leaked Documents Detail Al-Qaeda's Efforts To Fight Back Against Drones

Billy the Mountain Why are they called cells? (234 comments)

Whenever it's a terrorist collaboration they are called cells? Why don't they just call them teams or work groups? Then they can start buying those motivational posters, have team-building programs, etc.

about a year ago

Submissions

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New Technology Produces Cheaper Tantalum and Titanium

Billy the Mountain Billy the Mountain writes  |  about a year and a half ago

Billy the Mountain (225541) writes "A small UK company is bringing new technology online that could reduce the prices of tantalum and titanium ten-fold. According to this piece in The Economist: A tantalising prospect, the key is a technique similar to smelting aluminum with a new twist: The metallic oxides are not melted as with aluminum but blended in powder form with a molten salt that serves as a medium and electrolyte. This technology is known as the FFC Cambridge Process. Other metals include Neodymium, Tungsten and Vanadium"
Link to Original Source

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