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White House Approves Sonic Cannons For Atlantic Energy Exploration

Rising Ape Scary name (271 comments)

"Sonic cannon"? Nice bit of hyperbole. Everyone else just calls them airguns.

That ~ 250 dB @ 1m is a bit misleading. It won't be that loud at 1m because airgun arrays are not point sources. Additionally, there shouldn't be anything that close as it's standard practice to start at a lower amplitude and ramp up slowly. The amplitude falls off with distance quite quickly.

This technology has been in widespread use for decades.

3 days ago
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Dealing With 'Advertising Pollution'

Rising Ape Re:i'm glad to work for free (388 comments)

you either get rid of advertising and pay to watch each video, or you put up with advertising.

I have no objection to paying for ad-free stuff. Of course, to be fair, I'd then like a refund on the part of the price of the stuff I buy that goes to advertising it.

That's the worst thing about advertising - it's surely more expensive than just paying directly, as you have to pay people to make the ad, plus various extra middlemen. And in return for that extra money you get to be assaulted by obnoxious audiovisual pollution.

4 days ago
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Bug In Fire TV Screensaver Tears Through 250 GB Data Cap

Rising Ape Re:It's 2014 (349 comments)

Because we still have antiquated data lines and switches and whatnot that can only handle so much total bandwidth

At least for DSL technologies, the antiquated bit can support full bandwidth 24/7 as it's unshared.

That doesn't stop quite a few companies from putting caps on it regardless.

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Correlation Between Text Editor and Programming Language?

Rising Ape Re:Fortran and vim (359 comments)

Actually, it's everything and vim, but I usually code in Fortran

Ah, so you're the other Fortran programmer on here. I've often thought I should learn a proper IDE because I'm working with code that needs serious reworking and something to automate the process would help. Emacs is fine for most things though.

Perhaps I should be thankful I'm not using a card punch...

about three weeks ago
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Germany's Glut of Electricity Causing Prices To Plummet

Rising Ape Not so good (365 comments)

So what all this is saying is that at the times when the solar panels are producing the most power they can only sell it for peanuts? If it wasn't for feed in tariffs that guaranteed a big payment no matter what the selling price they'd be stuffed.

That's not exactly a ringing endorsement for solar power.

about three weeks ago
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New Chemical Process Could Make Ammonia a Practical Car Fuel

Rising Ape Re:waste of time (380 comments)

A 5 minute charge would require a charger that could supply about a megawatt (for about 250 miles). Even if you could design a battery pack that could handle that kind of power input, supplying the energy isn't trivial.

about a month ago
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Half of Germany's Power Supplied By Solar, Briefly

Rising Ape Re:Inefficient much (461 comments)

As you correctly point out solar is good for peak load.

In Germany? Here in the UK peak demand is in the winter months, where solar panel output is negligible. I admit I haven't checked, but I suspect Germany's demand profile is closer to Britain than to California.

about a month ago
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Has the Ethanol Threat Manifested In the US?

Rising Ape Re:Could it be tuned for better mileage though? (432 comments)

Ford (and maybe others) have suggested that an E30 blend would allow them to make significantly more efficient engines due to the strong anti-knock effect of ethanol, particularly when used with direct injection.

about 2 months ago
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Fiat Chrysler CEO: Please Don't Buy Our Electric Car

Rising Ape Re:Indirect tax (462 comments)

Given that European and Japanese cars are massively more economical than American ones, it certainly isn't that. The gas 500s do 59MPG (Imp) and the diesels 76MPG (Imp).

Maybe on the NEDC test cycle, but not in reality. We really need a new, more realistic testing scheme.

about a month ago
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US Wireless Carriers Shifting To Voice Over LTE

Rising Ape Re:Does VoLTE work from one carrier to another? (126 comments)

Makes sense, but then surely the same gateway could be used to let an LTE mobile phone talk to a non-LTE mobile phone, without the need to kick the handset itself onto 3G. I can understand the lack of urgency though - VoLTE is hardly a selling point and they'll have to maintain the older network for the forseeable future anyway.

about 2 months ago
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US Wireless Carriers Shifting To Voice Over LTE

Rising Ape Re:Does VoLTE work from one carrier to another? (126 comments)

It seems strange to me that VoLTE needs *both* ends to support it in order to work. What about when you want to call a traditional non-mobile number? Surely they can't intend to keep 2G/3G around forever for this purpose, or is this feature planned for a later version of LTE?

about 2 months ago
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30-Day Status Update On LibreSSL

Rising Ape Re:Fake Security Gurus (164 comments)

Here is a random 8-character password that only uses lowercase letters: dqvkdnbi. Try memorizing that

That kind of thing is easy enough to remember for the passwords you use a lot. For everything else, there's Keepass.

about 2 months ago
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Why Cheap Smartphones Are Going To Upset the Industry

Rising Ape Re:Upset the industry? (234 comments)

I use VOIP sometimes but have often had to drop my calls and go back to the standard phone network because the quality was so poor. Maybe other ISPs or VOIP providers would be better - but it's a bit of a crapshoot. It's certainly not good enough to abandon conventional phones entirely.

about 2 months ago
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Why Cheap Smartphones Are Going To Upset the Industry

Rising Ape Re:Upset the industry? (234 comments)

I tried one of those Chinese smartphones. Absolute pile of crap - technically it worked but it was so slow and frustrating that trying to use it was an utter chore. My Nexus 5 cost three times as much but is easily worth it.

Agree on the contracts though - my monthly bill on Three PAYG is about £5-10.

about 2 months ago
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Should Tesla Make Batteries Instead of Electric Cars?

Rising Ape Re:They've been pushing this angle for a while (362 comments)

Let it die in the middle of a big recession? Not the best idea to put countless people out of work, reducing tax revenue both directly and from less spending in the wider economy. The lower spending of these workers elsewhere would then have knock-on effects and the total damage could easily exceed the cost of the bailout.

Saying "just let them die" would needlessly destroy a lot of normally profitable and productive companies that struggle purely due to a recession that was outside their control, as well as make said recession a lot worse.

about 2 months ago
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Should Tesla Make Batteries Instead of Electric Cars?

Rising Ape Re:They've been pushing this angle for a while (362 comments)

Anyone could have put a huge glass cockpit in their luxury car. They could have negotiated lifetime data plans with cellular carriers. They could have auto-retracting door handles

That huge screen is fucking ugly, like an enormous TV in a small room. The other things sound like gimmicks. Maybe the other car companies didn't do all that because it was a bad idea.

about 2 months ago
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Future of Cars: Hydrogen Fuel Cells, Or Electric?

Rising Ape Re:Electric. (659 comments)

Most source I've seen quote efficiency of an ideal Otto cycle as over 45% for a 10:1 compression ratio - and some engines have much higher compression than that (e.g. Mazda Skyactiv 14:1).

Your figure of less than 30% overall is probably right though, because engines spend most of their time operating quite a way from their peak efficiency. IIRC the Prius's engine has a peak efficiency of about 37%, with the benefit of the hybrid being that it can operate near that peak much more than a normal car by avoiding less efficient conditions such as light loads.

about 2 months ago
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Future of Cars: Hydrogen Fuel Cells, Or Electric?

Rising Ape Combustion engines (659 comments)

There's still a lot of improvements that can be made to the good old internal combustion engine. Both batteries and fuel cells are much more expensive - they may come down (slowly), but the efficiency of combustion engines will keep going up, thus maintaining the gap.

about 2 months ago
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Future of Cars: Hydrogen Fuel Cells, Or Electric?

Rising Ape Re:Diesel (659 comments)

Theoretically newer diesels are cleaner than old ones, but I still see plumes of black smoke from the exhausts of cars that should be new enough to have particulate filters, as well as noxious smells. Whenever I get stuck behind a foul smelling car, it's always a diesel (except for the very rare cases of a pre-catalyst petrol). On my commute it's got to the point where flipping the ventilation to recirculate mode is a reflex.

about 2 months ago
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Thorium: The Wonder Fuel That Wasn't

Rising Ape Re:Sihg... Not valid. (204 comments)

Indeed, I much prefer my radioisotopes bound up in solid cladding. A molten salt reactor seems to combine the difficulties of a reactor and a reprocessing plant in the same package - except worse, because normal reprocessing plants work on fuel that's had a couple of years to cool off.

They also solve a problem that right now doesn't exist - there's no shortage of uranium.

about 2 months ago

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