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Former NATO Nuclear Bunker Now an 'Airless' Unmanned Data Center

Framboise Re:This is logistically impossible. (147 comments)

Could be filled with a liquid and maintenance made by scuba divers.

2 days ago
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Former NATO Nuclear Bunker Now an 'Airless' Unmanned Data Center

Framboise Re:Headline stupidity (147 comments)

What about a liquid filling the room?

2 days ago
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The Search For Starivores, Intelligent Life That Could Eat the Sun

Framboise Cosmophage (300 comments)

On the deirious mode a really well developped being would eats the whole universe and and in passing eats all gods. Consequence: it would enter an infinitie loop of eating itself, no need to look for food again.

about three weeks ago
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Bill Gates Endorses Water From Human Waste

Framboise kW or kWh? (245 comments)

From BG blog one can conclude that the author belongs to the category of people unclear about the difference between a quantity of energy and a rate of energy production. To his excuse the common poor choice of kWh instead of the SI J (Joule J, 1 kWh = 3.6 MJ) as energy unit is just making energy discussions more confusing.

 

about three weeks ago
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Linking Drought and Climate Change: Difficult To Do

Framboise Mean and fluctuations (222 comments)

The climate has always been a highly fluctuating system where extreme temperatures oscillate over seasons and location by, say typically +/-20K (Kelvin), around a mean value around 287K, slowly growing. In some countries the fluctuations are larger, in some others smaller. All the discussion about the human-induced warming is about the effect of changing this mean value by a couple of K (now +0.5K, in the next century by +2-4K). So even in the most pessimistic scenarios the warming remains in amplitude a small fraction of the typical annual fluctuations. No wonder that it will be difficult to prove that any extreme fluctuations will result from the warming.

about a month and a half ago
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Eric Schmidt: To Avoid NSA Spying, Keep Your Data In Google's Services

Framboise Re:Under US Jurisdiction? (281 comments)

Google is investing massively abroad, such as in Zurich, Switzerland, where privacy laws are especially strong. Expect that if US laws continue to have negative effects on Google income, the company is going to be more and more international.

about a month and a half ago
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Berkeley Lab Builds World Record Tabletop-Size Particle Accelerator

Framboise Re:Only good news for science. (90 comments)

Indeed low cost means more affordable devices for more labs, and new technology means possible expansion to bigger (then more exensive) such devices, allowing to explore new frontiers in physics.

about 2 months ago
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Who Needs NASA? Exoplanet Detected Using a DSLR

Framboise Real advantage (108 comments)

One cannot escape the fact that bigger apperture telescopes can record fainter
stars, and/or perfom the photometry of bright stars with more precision than a simple camera.

To detect exoplanets one needs both large samples of stars recorded as continuously as
possible over several years and high precision photometry. Besides being cheap, the advantage
of a small camera is than the field is larger. But with a larger telescope in space like Kepler one
can target regions of the sky with density of stars optimal for the CCD/camera combination, and
observe continuously for months with the same instruments, which is crucial for differential
photometry. Thousands of amateurs worldwide detecting as many new exoplantes as Kepler
would face the problem of coordinating the analysis of huge amounts of heterogeneous and
incomplete data (due to day/night and weather interruptions in differently dark and transparent skies).

The real question is wether crowdsourcing planet detection is cheaper for global economy at equal scientific return than with state sponsored research. Perhaps the most important benefit of such an
activity is educational and promotional for research in general.

   

about 2 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Are the Strangest Features of Various Programming Languages?

Framboise Re:Lua[0]? (729 comments)

The discussion is not on measuring continuous quantities
  but counting discrete objects. Physicists and mathematicians have indexed, say, vectors, starting with 1 for ages, except in recent times where sometimes they use 0 for very special reason (like chapter 0 in a book).

about 5 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Are the Strangest Features of Various Programming Languages?

Framboise Re:Assignement in Python (729 comments)

Observe that one needs two operators, memory copy, and "point to".
What is wrong is to use only one symbol for the two, and change the meaning according to operator content.

about 5 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Are the Strangest Features of Various Programming Languages?

Framboise Assignement in Python (729 comments)

Assigning a number or a list in Python and many other languages (Julia) is a different operation. Such as

>>> a = 2
>>> b = a
>>> a = 1
>>> b
2

>>> a = [2]
>>> b = a
>>> a[0] = 1
>>> b
[1]

Octave (Matlab) is more consistent on this point, every assignement is a memory copy.

about 5 months ago
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Astronomers Find What May Be the Closest Exoplanet So Far

Framboise Re:Time to travel 11 light years (89 comments)

Before embarking to such a trip you had better wait the confirmation of a planet around Alpha Centauri at 4.3 ly. Even if the already announced discovery turns out to be wrong, the probability that some planets exist in the Alpha Centauri system is large.

about 5 months ago
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Researchers Find Evidence of How Higgs Particle Imparts Mass

Framboise Re:Another giant leap? (91 comments)

The Higgs is not responsible for creating mass in general, just for the mass of particles included in the Standard Model. The Standard Model is incomplete since in this model the mass of neutrinos is zero. So the Higgs doesn't explain the mass of neutrinos.

about 6 months ago
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The Big Bang's Last Great Prediction

Framboise Neutrino temperature (80 comments)

The orginal article keeps quoting the temperature of 1.96K as the neutrino background temperature, as found in most textbooks on the topic. This is a relic of the time people were assuming massless neutrinos. The confusion is maintained by people using the temperature as a synonym of energy. Actually the non-zero rest mass energy must be subtracted, providing the real kinetic energy of these particles (moving now at 100-1000 km/s) that would be exchanged with a super large thermometer (in view of the tiny interaction cross section). The effective neutrino temperature would then be measured in the milliKelvin range.

 

about 8 months ago
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Snowden Queries Putin On Live TV Regarding Russian Internet Surveillance

Framboise The art of lying (396 comments)

A good lier should not lie most of the time, otherwise one just needs to reverse the saying to know the truth with high probability.

On that account Obama is smarted than Putin IMHO. He does lie, but in a less systematic manner.

 

about 9 months ago
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Edward Snowden and Laura Poitras Win Truth-Telling Award

Framboise Re:He should get the Nobel Peace and War Prize (123 comments)

The so-called "Peace" prize is indeed badly named. Other famous war makers, H-bomb creator, mass killing authors and terrorists got it:

Yasser Arafat, Shimon Peres and Yitzhak Rabin (1994)
Mohamed Anwar al-Sadat and Menachem Begin (1978)
Andrei Dmitrievich Sakharov (1975)
Henry A. Kissinger and Le Duc Tho (1973)

So perhaps Edward Snowden and Laura Poitras have better not to be awarded
the Nobel.

about 10 months ago
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Could Earth's Infrared Emissions Be a New Renewable Energy Source?

Framboise Re:Power density? (78 comments)

The total heat produced by radioactivity in Earth is 44.2 TW (Wikipedia).
The total solar power received by Earth by the upper atmosphere is 174 PW (Wikipedia).
This means 3937 more solar energy is received by Earth than produced by radioactivity in its interior.
Furthermore geothermal energy is high entropy energy in regard of solar energy since the temperature difference between
ground (~287K) and nearby space (>10K) (DT=277K) is much less than the temperature difference between
sunlight (5778K) and ground (DT=5491K).

In short the whole idea of converting Earth heat into electricity is completely inefficient in regard of solar energy.
The only way to use efficiently geothermal energy is to find hot spots where it is concentrated by thousands with respect to average.

about 10 months ago
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How the NSA Plans To Infect 'Millions' of Computers With Malware

Framboise Cyber war preparation (234 comments)

Developing massive attack tools like that make a global cyber war more likely.
As with the initial ICBM's the first one to strike may believe to win.
Very dangerous, and foolish.

about a year ago
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Ask Slashdot: How Do I Change Tech Careers At 30?

Framboise Microsoft is on decline (451 comments)

Think about the fate of dinosaurs that were replaced by smaller more agile mammals when difficult times came...

about a year ago

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