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Ask Slashdot: Minimizing Oil and Gas Dependency In a Central European City?

Hypotensive Viability of renewables (250 comments)

Whether renewables will work in isolation for you is going to depend on a number of other variables, such as how big the space you need to heat is under your roof, how big the roof is, and the thermal efficiency of the building.

Even in Central Europe during winter you should be able to generate 1kW from around 8m2 of solar photovoltaic panel. That 1kW is sufficient to power a heat pump capable of providing around 3kW of heat. You can do your own calculations about how much you would need to scale that up by based on your own space measurements.

As others have said everyone can benefit from using solar thermal to heat their hot water. For a short while now there's been a new technology called thermodynamic panels that combine solar thermal technology and a small compressor, working a little like an air-to-air heat pump. These are highly efficient and depending on how much hot water storage you have you might be able to pump it through a radiator system to provide central heating. Again for an off-grid solution you'd need PV to provide the baseline power for it, but it would be in the order of magnitude capable of being supplied by solar.

Lastly, depending on how much control you have you might be able to rebuild or rework the actual building construction. If you can do this to a high enough level you might consider a Passivhaus which would drastically reduce the space heating requirements.

about two weeks ago
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Elon Musk Warns Against Unleashing Artificial Intelligence "Demon"

Hypotensive Existential threats (583 comments)

Climate change is an existential threat that is here right now. You'd think he would know about this one.

about a month ago
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Proposed Penalty For UK Hackers Who "Damage National Security": Life

Hypotensive On a computer (165 comments)

So a government policy that was written by someone on a computer which resulted in damage to national security, the economy or the environment (hmm, there might be a few of those) can now result in life?

[goes looking for some politicians to imprison]

about a month ago
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FBI Says It Will Hire No One Who Lies About Illegal Downloading

Hypotensive Next: speeding (580 comments)

Next they will refuse to hire you if you ever went 1mph or more over the national speed limit.

about a month ago
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Slashdot Asks: What's In Your Home Datacenter?

Hypotensive Article fails to understand watts (287 comments)

This article would be a whole lot more impressive if the author actually knew what a watt was. The article repeatedly uses kW/hour even though this is not a measure. You either have a kilowatt (measure of power, or energy over time), or a kilowatt hour (amount of energy that running one kilowatt for an hour, or kilowatt MULTIPLIED BY hour, consumed).

Saying "average consumption is 1-2 kW/hour" is just nonsensical. If you mean that consumption is 1-2 kilowatt-hours, then over what time? Or more likely you just mean that average consumption is 1-2 kilowatts.

about 2 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Any Place For Liberal Arts Degrees In Tech?

Hypotensive Modern languages (392 comments)

Certainly if you are good at modern languages, tech companies are very interested in localization. It's unlikely you'll achieve a rockstar programmer wage, but you will definitely find stable employment if that's what you want.

about 2 months ago
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Comcast Using JavaScript Injection To Serve Ads On Public Wi-Fi Hotspots

Hypotensive OK to continue (230 comments)

If browsers treated HTTP GET nowadays like they have treated HTTP POST (i.e. pop up an annoying modal dialog that says "This connection is untrusted. Are you sure you want to continue?"), I daresay this would motivate everyone to move to HTTPS.

The problem is the web of trust and the cost of getting certificates. There needs to be a mechanism for getting a free or trivial cost certificate if you are not a corporation.

about 2 months ago
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Fifth Edition Dungeons and Dragons Player's Handbook Released

Hypotensive Re:5e: Best D&D, MHO (203 comments)

Max-level caster? You get a ninth level spell per day. Use it carefully.

Plus your Intelligence or Wisdom modifier.

about 3 months ago
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The Technologies Changing What It Means To Be a Programmer

Hypotensive Re:Not changed much (294 comments)

If you go back 30 years you'd probably have had to write the language you were going to use and an interpreter or compiler for it. You would absolutely have had to know about the database design, although the database would have been made up of byzantine interrelated b-trees rather than intuitive SQL tables. You'd have had to write everything from scratch for each task rather than leveraging huge libraries for everything. Things are many times easier these days yet you still find articles like this that bemoan how complicated everything is.

about 3 months ago
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Brookings Study Calls Solar, Wind Power the Most Expensive Fossil Alternatives

Hypotensive Comparison inherently bad (409 comments)

The paper does not distinguish between solar PV, solar thermal, and solar water heating, which are all completely different technologies with completely different scales of efficiency.

It does not distinguish between wind turbines sited on land and wind turbines sited at sea, despite the fact that the latter cost approximately 10 times more than the former to build and maintain.

Overall because of this conflation the results it comes up with are inherently flawed. Please try again.

about 3 months ago
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City of London Police Take Down Proxy Service Over Piracy Concerns

Hypotensive Re:Not a private police force. (133 comments)

it's not private, not under the control of the companies in the CoL

The police authority for the City of London Police is the Common Council of the City, which is the Corporation of the City of London. According to the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011 there is no elected commissioner replacing that police authority.

In the rest of the UK police authorities were phased out in 2012 and replaced by Police and Crime Commissioners, however there were two police forces that were exempt from this, the Met (whose PCC is the Mayor of London) and the City of London Police whose authority remains with the Corporation.

It answers to the Corporation. You are right that UK taxes pay for it but it is far from being a publicly accountable police force.

about 3 months ago
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City of London Police Take Down Proxy Service Over Piracy Concerns

Hypotensive Re:What a stupid fucking summary (133 comments)

It is an ordinary government district

It is anything but ordinary. I invite you to watch Secret City.

about 4 months ago
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City of London Police Take Down Proxy Service Over Piracy Concerns

Hypotensive Re:Not a private police force. (133 comments)

The Corporation of the City of London is a government entity (the government of the City of London) but it is not democratically elected (aldermen are "elected" in a closed system by companies not individuals and the Corporation can decide to revoke any such appointment for whatever reason it feels like). So effectively it is a private members' only club with its own police force.

about 4 months ago
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The Problems With Drug Testing

Hypotensive Re:Huh (166 comments)

Unfortunately you do also need control subjects. Unless you compel people to do it (maybe at random, like jury service, or on other criteria, like conscription) you will always find exploitation.

about 4 months ago
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Russian Government Edits Wikipedia On Flight MH17

Hypotensive Re:Let us keep our thoughts with our Kremlin frien (667 comments)

Ukraine's own military might have done it

This seems somewhat improbable considering that their enemy, the separatists, don't have any aircraft.

It's the same situation as you had in Syria where chemical weapons were being deployed by helicopter in barrels. Was it the rebels or the government? Well, considering that the rebels don't have any helicopters...

about 4 months ago
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Unintended Consequences For Traffic Safety Feature

Hypotensive Re:Shared space (579 comments)

Having pedestrians wandering around on main arteries is not a good idea at the best of times. This is what pedestrian subways are for.

about 5 months ago
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Unintended Consequences For Traffic Safety Feature

Hypotensive Shared space (579 comments)

A better solution might be to remove the signals altogether. Several European towns have tried shared-space experiments where there are no signals or markings and the pedestrians and vehicle drivers have to actually watch out for each other. In all such experiments so far, traffic fatalities have dropped significantly.

about 5 months ago
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MP Says 'Failed' Piracy Warnings Should Escalate To Fines & Jail

Hypotensive Re:Victimless crimes are not felonies (135 comments)

Because their lobbyists spend a lot of money on fluffing politicians. Cash for questions never went away, they're just more careful now.

about 5 months ago

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