Japanese Firm Proposes Microwave-Linked Solar Plant On the Moon
The article did not say oil would run out, just affordable oil.
Here is a summary
The problem is not peak oil, but peak affordable oil.
We are already there, the big oil companies have cut back exploration because the cannot make money even at $100/barrel.
High oil prices choke off growth in our economy
With little or no growth, we cannot pay our debts.
As in 2008, unpayable debt will crack our financial system
As not in 2008, the central banks have shot most of their “arrows” and have few left in their quiver.
With a broken financial system, we will have the social chaos that was barely avoided in 2008
Japanese Firm Proposes Microwave-Linked Solar Plant On the Moon
After the oil runs out, there won't be any money. Details here. Warning -- it's a harrowing read.
Ask Slashdot: Why Are We Still Writing Text-Based Code?
because you can't produce something complex with something simple
Hmm, this sounds like a creationist's argument against Darwinian evolution.
Studies Say Earth Won't Die As Soon As Thought
A Princeton-led research group has discovered an isolated community of bacteria nearly two miles underground that derives all of its energy from the decay of radioactive rocks rather than from sunlight. According to members of the team, the finding suggests life might exist in similarly extreme conditions even on other worlds.
Controversial Execution In Ohio Uses New Lethal Drug Combination
I don't see why there is a technical problem with capital punishment. Twice I had open heart surgery, Twice I was put under anesthesia. Neither time did I feel any pain or discomfort. While I was under they could has turned me off without me being aware.
I am against capital punishment. Like nuclear power it requires a level of perfection that we do not have. Still, if you must do it, it seems we have the means to do it humanely.
FBI Edits Mission Statement: Removes Law Enforcement As 'Primary' Purpose
In the last dozen years we have had about two dozen victims of terrorism and 100,000 victims of gun crime. Yet we are devoting so many more resources to terrorism. The main danger of terrorism is causing overreaction. Bin Laden's strategy was to bankrupt the United States and we are helping him succeed.. The main danger of terrorism is causing overreaction. With this, NSA and Iraq he is on the way to success,
Is Computer Science Education Racist and Sexist?
Including culturally relevant instructional materials represented a driving focus of our course development," explained ECS Team members who now advise Code.org. "Cultural design tools encourage students to artistically express computing design concepts from Latino/a, African American, or Native American history as well as cultural activities in dance, skateboarding, graffiti art, and more.
Fifty years ago the African Americans' lag in education was attributed to textbooks that ignored them, and a lack of adult role models in the schools. As time went on many black educators entered the workforce and textbooks included african american in pictures and as examples. Unfortunately it did not help much. We still have a gap.
Satanists Propose Monument At Oklahoma State Capitol Next To Ten Commandments
Catholics, Jews and Protestants have different translations of the 10 Commandments. Some translations differ on how to divide the commandments. Muslim translation(s) may differ too.
I suggest a lawsuit to post all translations, or perhaps just post the original Hebrew version.
Nearly 1 In 4 Adults Surf the Web While Driving
Has the accident rate increased?
Physicists Plan to Build a Bigger LHC
When the LHC was first built I was impressed by the multi billion $USD cost. Now we spend that much just bailing out a bank so they can pay bonuses to their never-indicted criminal executives.
It's funny how we can't afford to repair our bridges and schools, but when it comes to bailouts and worthless wars, cost is no consideration.
4 Prominent Scientists Say Renewables Aren't Enough, Urge Support For Nuclear
For 2008, the average worldwide generated electric power is in the order of 5 TW. . This is estimated to increase at the rate of 2.2 percent per year from 2010 to 2040 .
This means will need to increase generation capacity by about 110 Gigawatts per year. If we generously assume that each nuclear power plant generates 1 GW, to supply all the increase from nuclear generation we will need to open a new plant about every three days. Given the immense cost, complexity and large delays associated with construction of new nuclear plants there is no way we we get close to that number.
Will Cloud Services One Day Be Traded Just Like Stocks and Bonds?
One if Enron's hare-brained schemes was to develop a market in bandwidth . It was one of the things that steered me away from investing in what was then the hottest stock in the market
Inside the 2013 US Intelligence "Black Budget"
Thought experiment: What if just before we went into Vietnam and Iraq, someone leaked all our intelligence about these countries. There is a good chance the outcry would have stopped these stupid/criminal wars.
Technologies Like Google's Self-Driving Car: Destroying Jobs?
All of us benefit from being the heirs of the industrial revolution. Even the poorest of us have better health and nutrition than before. We all have better healthcare than the mightiest king did 300 years ago. Yet for the average person who lived during the industrial revolution life was poor hell. Craftsmen and herders were sent into Dickensian factories and mines. I hope we can live long enough for the majority of citizens to see a benefit from our present computer revolution.
Researchers Discover Way To Spot Crappy Coffee
I counted 102 beans in my coffee scoop. I weighed a scoop at 15 grams which gives 30 scoops to a pound (454 g ). This means there are 3060 beans in a pound. At a price $400/pound civet coffee comes out to 7.65 cents per bean.
I measured Brazilian coffee, not civet. The real number may differ.
Three Banks Lose Millions After Wire Transfer Switches Hacked
Another example of the increasing skill requirements for today's work force. 50 years ago the only skills required to rob a bank was the ability to hold a gun and drive a getaway car. Now - sheesh - you have to know how to break into a high security switch.
The average guy has no chance to make it nowadays.
Nitrogen Fixing Bacteria That Can Colonize Most Plants Discovered
The bacteria gets its energy from sugar in the plant. How much sugar? How much does it decrease the plant's yield.
Study Finds Fracking Chemicals Didn't Pollute Water
If done properly and carefully, fracking does not produce environmental damage.
If done properly and carefully, deep sea oil drilling does not produce environmental damage.
If done properly and carefully, nuclear power does not produce environmental damage.
However, we know from the last two examples, things are not always done properly and carefully.
If we allow fracking, we have to assume that failures will occur, and have public plans, with pre-arranged financing, on how we will handle the inevitable failures
Harvard, IBM Crunch Data For More Efficient Solar Cells
A large part of the total cost is the supporting structure, and the smaller the needed collector, the less the structure costs.
Robots Help Manufacturing Recover Without Adding Jobs
All of us benefit from being the heirs of the industrial revolution. Even the poorest of us have better health and nutrition than before. We all have better health care than the mightiest king did 300 years ago. Yet for the average person who lived during the industrial revolution life was poor hell. Craftsmen and herders were sent into Dickensian factories and mines. I hope we can live long enough for the majority of citizens to see a benefit from our present computer revolution.
Posted previously Jan 23, 2013
Tylenol-laced Mice airdropped over Guam
InterGuru (50986) writes "The examiner reports that Tylenol laced mice are being airdropped over Guam.
Mice recently airdropped on Guam were highly toxic to their predators as they were pumped full of Tylenol. The mice were airdropped on the island paradise as food offerings for the Brown Snake. This airdrop is an attempt to eradicate the snake from the island paradise of Guam, according to KPLR 11.com on Dec. 3.
The Brown Snake has devastated the island’s native bird population and the slithering creatures have caused millions of dollars in damages to Guam’s electrical infrastructure. The U.S. Government stepped in and offered poisoned mice to the snakes for their dinner.
I wonder whether this will be picked up as an example of government waste?"
Functional Claim Drafting Practices Considered by USPTO
InterGuru writes "From the article in American Intellectual Property Association website.
Despite public misconceptions to the contrary, software is not patentable. Of course, aspects of software, or “software related” patents exist in which an otherwise statutory apparatus or product is claimed that includes computer implemented functionality. In an effort to enhance the “quality” of these software related patents, the USPTO issued a notice last Thursday in the Federal Register entitled: Request for Comments and Notice of Roundtable Events for Partnership for Enhancement of Quality of Software Related Patents.
I myself don't understand this, but it sounds interesting. It continues,
Reading through the tea leaves, the USPTO appears quite interested in exploring means-plus-function claiming with the software community. Since this style of claiming directly links the disclosed structure of the patent specification (algorithmic in the case of computer implemented features), it may be that the Office is proposing to rein in the scope of software claims by requiring the more narrow claim type. ...
The collapse of Jewish Achievement?
InterGuru writes "In a large article about college admissions and Asians I found an intriguing paragraph.
The Strange Collapse of Jewish Academic Achievement
From my own perspective, I found these statistical results surprising, even shocking.
I had always been well aware of the very heavy Jewish presence at elite academic institutions. But the underwhelming percentage of Jewish students who today achieve high scores on academic aptitude tests was totally unexpected, and very different from the impressions I had formed during my own high school and college years a generation or so ago. An examination of other available statistics seems to support my recollections and provides evidence for a dramatic recent decline in the academic performance of American Jews.
I am Jewish and it does not match my experience in the 50's nor that of my children and their friends who were born in the 70's."
Link to Original Source
MPG of a human
InterGuru writes "Tom Murphy, blogging from UCSD in his Do the Math blog asks
' I am curious to know how potent human fuel can be. How many miles per gallon do we get as our own engines of transportation? '
He finds, after accounting for the energy intensity of American agriculture, which uses ten units of energy to get one unit of food energy, walking consumes 18-34 MPG of oil equivalent, and biking comes in at 70-130 MPG.
Maybe if we switched to a more vegetarian diet, we could improve on this."
Link to Original Source
Light too slow for Wall St. use Neutrinos?
InterGuru writes "The New Scientist notes that Wall Street traders are frustrated with the limitations caused by relativity.
EVERY microsecond counts in stock trading. The New York Stock Exchange handles a third of the world's stock trading — around 22 billion messages a day. But NYSE Euronext, which operates the exchange, wants it to get even faster.
Slashdot has already noted the construction of a faster transatlatic cable. It seems however that even light is not fast for the casino that is now Wall Street.
"The speed-of-light limitation is getting annoying," Andrew Bach, head of network services at NYSE Euronext, told the European Conference on Optical Communications in Geneva, Switzerland, last week.
With global markets currently in turmoil, it might seem a strange time to worry about the speed of trades, particularly when automated trading was implicated in the stock market's May 2010 "flash crash". But traders still want their computers to receive trading data and place orders instantaneously. And customers will go elsewhere if a rival is faster.
Send in the neutrinos!!"
Link to Original Source
$400M cable to save 5ms for flash traders
InterGuru writes "I just read an article in Popular Science that almost made me sick to the stomach. The headline says it all "Pricey Transatlantic Cable Could Save Milliseconds, Millions by Speeding Data to Stock Traders".
Here is $400M being spent just to give flash traders a 5 ms advantage in trans-atlantic trading. It adds nothing to the economy, just lets the Wall Street Casino operators skim more money from the economy. I addition, it diverts talent from productive projects.
Never has Matt Taibbi's description of Goldman Sachs, and by extension, all the big banks, as "a great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity, relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like money" seem even more apt.
Bookwormhole.net over 30,000 links to published book reviews."
Link to Original Source
I just turned Adblock off
InterGuru writes "After three years of browsing with the Firefox extension, Adblock, I turned it off. This took some doing, as I enjoy the experience of browsing without annoying animated ads blinking at me.
I did not do it because I thought that blocking ads violates some social contract with the advertising industry. I did it because I felt that I was killing the goose that lays the golden eggs. Most of sites I read, including Slashdot, depend on ads for the revenue needed to continue publication.
We all hear how the "mainstream press" (MSM) is a dying anachronism in the face of blogging. Yet when you look at blogs, they are usually responding to a MSM story. In spite of record readership on the Net, the MSM is in real economic trouble as its paper version loses readership. Internet ads do not bring in the revenue that paper does, but it is the future revenue stream.
Well who cares! We all should. Few or no bloggers have the resources to send a reporter out for a few weeks to cover an in depth story, or for that matter, have a reporter sitting in on the city council meetings. If too many of us turn ads off, we will kill off the MSM even faster than it is dying.
I now grin and bear it when a blinking ad disturbs me. I even blink back at it.
Bookwormhole.net — Thousands of published book reviews."
An IT lawsuit is better than a nuclear war
InterGuru writes " Strategy Page notes that China is producing knockoff copies of its diesel submarine.
Russia is getting more and more upset at what it sees as Chinese making unauthorized use of Russian military technology. The latest irritation is the new Chinese diesel electric sub design, the Type 39A, or Yuan class. They look just like the Russian Kilo class.
In retaliation China is threatening a lawsuit.
The Russian sub building organizations are not amused, and are warning China of legal action if Yuans are offered for export (and in direct completion with the Kilos.)
Perhaps we could sic some IT Lawyers on Al Quaeda for violating the business process patents of older terrorist groups."
InterGuru has no journal entries.