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Disney Turned Down George Lucas's Star Wars Scripts

Maury Markowitz Lolz (412 comments)

> When Episodes 1-3 were actually released, many found them unsatisfying

Riiiight, unsatisfying. That's exactly the right description to use.

2 days ago
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Fake Engine Noise Is the Auto Industry's Dirty Little Secret

Maury Markowitz Re:Noise (790 comments)

> If you want to quite literally BURN MONEY on shit like that

I had a guy explain to me where the $50,000 he put into his Dodge Neon went.

When you're that stupid, how do you remember to keep breathing?

3 days ago
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Fake Engine Noise Is the Auto Industry's Dirty Little Secret

Maury Markowitz Cars, phsaw (790 comments)

> Without them, today's more fuel-efficient engines would sound far quieter

Lets talk jets.

I remember a CF-101 Voodoo doing it's first pass over Borden at about 200 feet in full burner. Car alarms went off, children screaming, it was amazing.

Then came the CF-18. Soo boring. Even the F-22's a wimp in comparison.

Maybe we should add fake noise at air shows?

3 days ago
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Blackberry CEO: Net Neutrality Means Mandating Cross-Platform Apps

Maury Markowitz Re:Open protocols (307 comments)

BAM!

3 days ago
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Blackberry CEO: Net Neutrality Means Mandating Cross-Platform Apps

Maury Markowitz Re:Please develop for my dying platform! (307 comments)

> Net Neutrality means mandating that developers and services must create something that works on your dying platform

Correct. Prepare for the iPhone Settings app on BB. Because not having that would be "unfair".

3 days ago
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Google Aims To Be Your Universal Translator

Maury Markowitz Re:Damn, No Arabic (122 comments)

> In that culture, it wasn't "bad" to marry someone under-age

I'm reading A Distant Mirror (and you should too, it's amazing!). The Duke of something-or-other has just married a 12 year old. Much chiding ensued. But other than that, both commonplace and well admired. Hey, you have a 50% chance of not making it to 20, so you had to get married early to lock down that dowry.

Best line from the book... A knight and Lady are having a conversation, and she implies he'd be bad in the sack because his beard has less hair that certain parts of the female anatomy. He asks if this is true in her case, and she states that it's not, she's completely bald in this region. Thinking for a moment, he replies that he'll take her word for it, because "grass doesn't grow on the well-trodden path".

Burn!

about two weeks ago
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Google Aims To Be Your Universal Translator

Maury Markowitz So then... (122 comments)

"But Google's goal behind the latest version of the app is to enhance and simplify the features so they work more quickly and fluidly without any lag time. The latest version of Google Translate aims to change that."

So... slower and laggier in the new version then?

Maybe the story author needs Google Translate.

about two weeks ago
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The Strange Story of the First Quantum Art Exhibition In Space

Maury Markowitz Re:Um, what? (69 comments)

> they're basically sampling random noise off of a CCD and claim that eventually it will produce the Mona Lisa

Almost...

> He says the interaction of the CCD with the cosmic background radiation ought to generate energy fluctuations
> that are equivalent to the array containing all possible images in quantum superposition.

All paintings at the same time.

It's utter rubbish of course. The decoherence time of a CCD is close to zero. There won't be a single complete image in there, let alone all of them.

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Linux Database GUI Application Development?

Maury Markowitz Re:Biased, but... (264 comments)

> t Oracle, PostgreSQL and MySQL python modules all do things differently

But so do the underlying DB's. That might sound like deflection, but considering that there's still no way to do cross-platform "return the first 10 rows" on the DB, I'm willing to give the API guys some leeway.

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Linux Database GUI Application Development?

Maury Markowitz Re:Hakija (264 comments)

> There's a reason I charge a hell of a lot more to develop on Linux and OS X vs on a MS platform.

Especially under VS13 where you can finally use GIT.

That said, Xcode did get better in 6.x, but you still can't do a "find all references" ?!

about two weeks ago
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Silicon Valley's Quest To Extend Life 'Well Beyond 120'

Maury Markowitz Re:Why tech zillionaires fund life exension resear (272 comments)

> and I feel FANTASTIC as a result

Of course you do, you're taking a pill. The contents of the pill matter little.

> Dude, there is a TON of low hanging fruit ... been almost no research into the field

Which means there's a TON of BS. Maybe I'm just a little older than you, but NAD is the latest in a very very very long string of things that ultimately proved to do nothing, as one would expect.

If it doesn't have a double-blind, it's not true. You should take that to the bank.

about two weeks ago
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Why We're Not Going To See Sub-orbital Airliners

Maury Markowitz Re:While suborbital flight may be too expensive... (300 comments)

> Concorde's engines WERE turbofans

They were pure turbojets. Zero bypass. You are wrong.

> the most efficient jet engines of their time in fact.

Not even remotely close.

You are, of course, referring to the overall thermal efficiency, which was indeed quite high. This is a wonderful measure of fitness for a *heat engine*, but exactly useless for measuring the fitness of a *jet engine*, which has to use that heat to accelerate air to provide thrust. *That* is called thrust specific fuel consumption, and the Olympus was poor even for its era - the TF39 (CF6) of the same era was twice as efficient:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thrust_specific_fuel_consumption

about three weeks ago
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Why We're Not Going To See Sub-orbital Airliners

Maury Markowitz Totally fallacious argument (300 comments)

The Fallacy of the Excluded Middle to be exact. And it's right here: "and they're going to fly in and out of spaceports some distance from the destination city"

Why would that be true? The *entire article* hinges on that statement. Yet there's exactly zero explanation of why this would be so.

One might make the argument that a hypersonic would be larger than a subsonic. That's likely true, one might imagine it being twice as large. So a Cessna Citation would be the size of a G5, and a G5 would be the size of a C100. All of these operate from small to medium sized airports. Even if it's the size of a 737, it's still going to be able to land and pull up to the executive terminal at every major city on the planet.

End of argument. He's already waved away the security issues and price by defining the market to be bizjet customers, so there appears to be nothing left.

about three weeks ago
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Should We Be Content With Our Paltry Space Program?

Maury Markowitz Re: No we shouldnt (287 comments)

> Really, who paid for the developmental science of tang?

http://www.todayifoundout.com/index.php/2011/01/tang-was-not-invented-for-the-space-program/

> Teflon?

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/molecule-of-the-month-teflon-the-nonstick-myth-that-stuck-did-you-think-that-your-hitech-frying-pan-was-a-spinoff-from-the-space-race-john-emsley-explains-that-the-truth-is-the-other-way-around-1414648.html

> Transistors

Bell Labs all the way, totally private. This is well recorded in any number of great books. You might want to try "Silicon Fire".

> , ic circuits?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Invention_of_the_integrated_circuit

> High frequency electronics? Plastics? Explosives?

None had to do with NASA, so I'm not sure what point you're trying to make. But them again I'm not sure what any of the remainder of your poorly-spelled and almost unreadable rant is supposed to be saying.

about three weeks ago
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Should We Be Content With Our Paltry Space Program?

Maury Markowitz Re:No we shouldnt (287 comments)

> Part of the reason those shuttle launches were so expensive was that they carried a lot of science.

Nope, that's not factored into launch costs. The Shuttle required a complete tear-down, rebuild and re-assemble after every flight. This was astonishingly expensive. Airline travel would be just as expensive if it had drop-tanks or launch boosters and required re-assembly after every flight. This is why single-shot rockets continue to dominate launches, the cost of the equipment is rarely as much as the cost of putting it back together.

about three weeks ago
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2014: Hottest Year On Record

Maury Markowitz Re:noooo (560 comments)

> If we ever get bulletproof failproof rocket launches

Well if you're just going to wave your fairy wand and create perfect rockets, why not just skip a step and wish the fuel into non-existence?

After all, it's much easier to build bulletproof failproof reactors and bulletproof failproof underground storage, but we don't have those either.

Also, $10,000 a kg does really bad things to your OPEX.

about three weeks ago
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2014: Hottest Year On Record

Maury Markowitz Re: noooo (560 comments)

> Of course, much of that delay you mention is the endless lawsuits by the anti-nukes and NIMBY types.

No it's not, the vast majority is due to the long lead times providing ample time for "something to go wrong" and the project goes into hiatus.

Why? Because if the time-to-build crosses an election boundary, the cancellation probability goes non-linear. Not so much a problem where there are no real elections to speak of, like the Philippines during Marcos, but a serious problem for places that do have free elections, like the Philippines after Marcos.

If they took 18 months to built, like a wind farm, we wouldn't have partially completed plants all over the place.

about three weeks ago
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2014: Hottest Year On Record

Maury Markowitz Re: noooo (560 comments)

> solving the problem is NOT what most environmentalists really want.

And as long as you keep blaming them for the problem, then the actual problem will never get solved.

> Note: I'm not asking the impossible, climate change luminaries like James Hansen have called for nuclear power to be used

Not impossible, just expensive. As the CAPEX is generally three to four times that of wind, and the lead times are four to five times as long, no one is giving them the money. That's it, end of story. Start here:

http://www.lazard.com/PDF/Levelized%20Cost%20of%20Energy%20-%20Version%208.0.pdf

Now turn to page 11. On-shore wind was going in for $1.40 to 1.80/Wp in 2014, it's gone down since publication. Combined with a 30% CF, that gives you an effective CAPEX/Wh of $4.66 to 6. Lazard gives $5.39 to 8.40 for nuclear, although it's gone up since publication (current average is around $9/Wp). Combined with an 85% CF, that's $6.35 to $10/Wh. Which means, all else considered, wind power costs around half that of nuclear.

And that's why no one other than the Chinese, who are handing out billions of dollars of interest-free and risk-free money for infrastructure, is building them. And even their program is on serious hiatus. The money simply isn't there.

The *actual problem* with nuclear is that practically every other option is cheaper and lower risk. It is, straight up, a bad investment. So unless you have a few hundred billion sitting in your bank account to buy one, guess what, you're part of the problem.

about three weeks ago
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New Proposed Path for Manned Trips to Mars: Let Mars' Gravity Capture Spacecraft

Maury Markowitz What the hell is this?! (105 comments)

"At the same time, sending a rocket into space, through the vast gulf that separates Earth's and Mars' orbit, and then firing thrusters in the opposite direction to slow down, requires a great deal of fuel."

The Hohmann Transfer is, mathematically provably, the *most efficient* way of travelling between any two orbits. It may require a "great deal of fuel", but that's still a great deal less than any other trajectory, which is precisely why we're willing to wait for the launch windows.

As to the rest, aerobraking and aerocapture is clearly more energy efficient. This article is like saying coal is better than wood for heating your home, while failing to mention gas.

about a month ago

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