Skeptics Would Like Media To Stop Calling Science Deniers 'Skeptics'
I'm with you man! We need to keep questioning all these fundamentally unsound 'scientific' theories.
I mean take Newton and his THEORY of gravity...
Call me a denier all you want. I'm not denying the "Science" part of this (Things fall). I am denying the predictive hyperbole from the likes of Issac Newton, who keeps making ridiculous claims, while having a huge gravity footprint (apple diet not withstanding).
Why Elon Musk's Batteries Frighten Electric Companies
Once battery tech is established, it kills the need for nuclear. Wind/solar is all you need. Wind/solar power the day and wind works at night when demand is lower anyway. Any gaps in coverage are absorbed by batteries. Legacy plants will have an increasingly difficult time generating cost competitive electricity as the years go by because despite the high upfront costs the generating costs for renewables are close to zero.
Currently the weak link IS battery tech, however, there has been a ton of work and research going into this area which seems to be showing promise in multiple areas. The next decade or so should yield major advances here pushing down costs and capacity up.
Volvo Developing Nano-Battery Tech Built Into Car Body Panels
This strikes me as having potential to augment the traditional battery in a car. I don't think it will replace it, nor should it. Combine this with a moderate sized battery and you extend the range of the car dramatically. Better, you can have two different systems optimized for different uses, one a slow charging energy dense battery and the other a quick charging efficient capacitor mopping up regenerative breaking energy and delivering it in a quick burst. Add in a few other systems such as integrating solar power to help run the increasing number to gadgets in cars and the electric car starts to really shine.
US Adults Score Poorly On Worldwide Test
True, most jobs simply require a skills based education. However, if you hope to run with any reasonable form of democratic government you need a population filled with people who can think and reason critically. The best way to generate such a population is with a robust education system.
N.C. Official Sics License Police On Computer Scientist For Too Good a Complaint
This is stupid on so many levels it boggles the mind. I'll have to limit to just a few:
If this guy decided to start selling traffic analysis to the city, then he should be stopped. However, the individual who did this work was not doing it for a profit therefore the complaint is meaningless. With the proliferation of the internet, anybody can easily obtain and use once obscure and hoarded knowledge. If someone takes the time to research and complete a well thought out and presented argument, it is incumbent on the city to respond in a well thought out manner. If he made a mistake, reply and point it out at the level he or she is engaging you on. Obviously in this case, someone in the city got caught with their pants down and doesn't like it. There are a lot of cocky people out there who think that they are gods gift to... (fill in the blank)... and that they are irreplaceable. They don't like it when they are shown up. People need to realize that no matter how highly skilled and how much education you have, OTHER PEOPLE CAN DO WHAT YOU DO TOO! ( Sometimes even better than you;) )
If this complaint is allowed to stand, the precedent it sets is scary: Any government councilor had better not question the engineer of any project. Same goes for the public at large. At least nobody better complain using any sort of intelligent argument.
Usage Based Billing In Canada To Be Rescinded
Yes, they still have caps, however, I go over my cap every month and have yet to be charged for it. As long as the threat of the independent operator is out there, the big guys will be less willing to make an issue out of it.
Bing Is Cheating, Copying Google Search Results
No, but it is cheating if you lash your Toyota to the Ford then claim better fuel economy.
Scientist Says NASA Must Study Space Sex
Perhaps I have mistaken how evolution works, however, just having babies in space or elsewhere is not enough to evolve a new species. You need selective pressures which only allow certain individuals to survive. I doubt very much that babies born off-world will face such a high mortality rate that many will not survive to have children of their own.
Judge Ends Massive Porn Lawsuit
At least somebody in the legal profession can clearly see what the internet was built for!
Google Wants To Take Away Your Capslock Key
All caps is annoying and if this stops half the nitwits from using it excessively I'm all for it. If you have something so important to say that it must be in all caps... YOU CAN HOLD DOWN THE SHIFT KEY.
Racy Danish Tabloid May Sue Apple For App Rejection
While it's not much of a deterrent to this kind of garbage that we've come to expect from apple in the short term. I'll still take a decision 5-10 years from now that might humble them a bit.
Although, take what I have to say with a grain of salt. I use to pull for Apple, but I've got a growing distaste for the business practices of almighty Jobs. Not that any of this would really matter to Apple because I'm not, nor will I ever be, a customer unless or until they amend their ways! Come to think of it: I've got to be the least desireable customer out there. I'm not an early adopter, nor do I feel the slighted pressure to buy the new 'it' item. Frankly, I'll go out of my way to spite a company that I feel deserves it and do my best to make sure others do as well.
Facebook Billionaire Gives Money To Legalize Marijuana
1. If alcohol is legal pot should be too. The former has far more potential for harm than the latter.
2. Half the population feels or has felt the law is contemptible and contemptible laws breed contempt for the law.
3. Pot should be regulated much the same as alcohol and cigarettes, in your home or licensed establishment. Obviously, one should not drive or engage in other potentially harmful activities when stoned. Common sense must prevail.
4. If governments wish, the level of THC in the product could be regulated in order to prevent ever more potent strains from being engineered.
5. Don't expect a huge tax windfall from legalizing pot, the stuff is dirt cheap to produce because it grows like a weed. Pun intended. Once the risk is removed, absent government mandated pricing competition will drive prices through the floor just like the rest of agriculture.
6. Stop putting people in jail for smoking pot. It makes no sense when places like California have such huge budgetary issues. A ballot initiative should be put to the people, de-criminalize or tax increase proportional to the cost of keeping all those locked up for the offense in jail. Halting the lock ups is really the only area you will see savings from legalization.
7. If Pot is legalized, then discourage smoking as a delivery method... Smoking is still harmful to your health.
8. At some point, it will happen so why not be ahead of the curve? The benefit is generally the greatest for the early adopter of these sorts of things.
9. No system is perfect. The best we can do is always try to make things better!
Might Shatner Boldly Lead Canada As Governor?
Not true... this January the GG of Canada had a choice to make about who would be the prime minister of Canada, when the current Prime minister approached her and told her that he wished to shut down parliament after something like three days. The opposition signed a powersharing deal in which they would be able to form a coalition government. Shuttering parliament was seen across the country as a political maneuver to avoid defeat. All eyes across the country turned to the GG as she was the arbiter who would ultimately decide who became prime minister.
50% Efficiency Boost From New Fuel Injection System
No, they REPORT that they get 64 miles/gallon. Who verified this? Lots of startups make outrageous claims to suck in investors. Is this under optimal conditions? In the lab, the Prius gets amazing mileage too. How heavy is their prototype? That's one funky, aerodynamic looking car... why not use a standard automobile... you know, something that might actually be driven by you on your way to work.
Oh, but I'm sure when the technology never quite makes it to market, die hard conspiracy nuts will claim some Oil company bought the technology only to destroy it so they can sell more oil.
Entergy Admits 2005 Tritium Leak
The outrage is because no other power plant has the potential for essentially permanent environmental contamination. This is not helped by the fact that the industry is deliberately lying to government regulators. If we can't trust the industry to come clean with, what you describe as a 'so what' incident, how can we trust industry when it come to a major incident? Oh, and if you're not concerned about Trituim in your water, then I suggest you walk the walk and start drinking and bathing in it.
FYI, there is outrage over coal plants in general. But this is a story about nuclear plants, hence, people are talking about them.
Carbon Nanotube Solar Cells On the Horizon
Boys, let's not argue! Cost vs efficiency are both important, it's your application that determines which is more so. If you're planning to launch the things into space, the purchase cost is not going to be terribly important to you but if you're planning on selling solar accent lights through Wal-mart then you want the cheapest cells that you can get your hands on.
US Nuclear Power Industry Poised For a Comeback
I'm still not a fan of Nuclear power, however, I do understand it's current appeal. Yes, at the site of the plant, virtually no carbon is emitted. But this doesn't take into account mining and processing activities.
I fully understand that, like most accidents in the world, the majority of nuclear accidents were caused by human error. Unfortunately, humans aren't going to be cut out of the picture anytime soon. While extremely unlikely, the cost of failure at a nuclear facility is simply too high, and with every new reactor that is in operation the risk, however small, grows.
As much as government and industry wish to whitewash this issue, it remains unresolved. The fact remains that the world has a growing stockpile of material which requires careful storage and monitoring for hundreds of thousands of years. Most of the material is currently at temporary facilities and will have to be handled and moved at minimum to a permanent facility. I find that in most discussions of Nuclear power, almost nobody wants to talk about the ongoing cost of maintaining and storing the byproducts and anybody who expects industry to pick up that tab indefinitely is out of their mind. None of this cost is calculated into the cost of price of electricity generated. No, it will be dumped on government in the form of cleanups and public debt. Anyone who doubts this simply has to look at amount of cleanup the government is currently responsible for from industry long since moved on. Who's paying to build the current long term site? Which brings us to the concept of a permanent facility. I know /. is populated by lots of engineers who love nothing better than to undertake new technological challenges, however, a million years is too long of a timescale. This puts you in the realm of unforeseen earthquakes and meteor strikes and a host of 1 in 1 000 000 year events. Frankly, I find it unconscionable that we are willing dump such a tremendous problem in the laps of our children, especially when there is no guarantee that they will be in any position to actually fix any problems that might occur. Then there is that whole can of worms known as reprocessing, with the associated geopolitical implications.
Finally, there remains one great unanswered question: Why do we need more nuclear power? I know why industry wants it. I know why government wants it. But why do we need it? I can see some limited small scale usage for medicine and perhaps deep space probes, but for our everyday needs Solar and wind ARE sufficient to take care of our energy needs, and when you consider that they are just at the beginning stages of their development they will only get better. Imagine how much better they would be if renewables actually had the same level of investment that the nuclear industry has been (and still is gifted with)? When you throw in geothermal, hydro, biomass, and some limited conventional generation it becomes very difficult to justify the risks and burdens of large scale nuclear deployment.
UK Royal Society Claims Geo-engineering Feasible
Any geoengineering solution that doesn't actually remove CO2 from the atmosphere is a waste of money because it fails to confront the totality of the problem. Though it garners the majority of the media attention, the biggest problem with increasing levels of CO2 in the atmosphere is not climate change, rather that it leads directly to an increase in the acidity of the worlds oceans.
Solar Roadways Get DoT Funding
Reading through many of the comments on this site, it has become apparent that many of you are dead-set opposed to this idea. I find that a little bit surprising with all that this idea has going for it. I must confess that my first reaction was: this is a brilliant idea! Are there potential issues here? Of course, but it has so much going for it that it would be foolish to ignore it.
Lets look at some of the problems:
Can glass stand up to punishment? We're not talking about house glass here. Anyone who has been to a hockey game knows how much abuse glass can withstand. Truth be told asphalt requires a ton of maintenance or it quickly deteriorates. Snowplows? Of course they will do some damage, but the question is: how much? They're already very hard on asphalt roads. Dirty? Well, we may find that street sweeper technology is effective. Having said that, if we do decide to implement this idea, I suspect that we would end up with a hybrid system. It would be foolhardy to suggest that one solution should fit all. I suspect that concrete or something will take the majority of the punishing loads with these panels along the shoulders or in parking lots or sidewalks. This idea may be more suited in certain climates and not others. At least to start.
Yes, this is more expensive than asphalt. But what are you getting for your money? If the inventor is to be believed, this surface would last 3X as long and would also incorporate the energy infrastructure of the nation. When people throw out trillion dollar numbers in regards to redoing the entire country, that's a bit of a scare tactic. Much of that money will have to be spent anyway repairing what we already have. If you eliminate some of the ideas such as the ultracapacitors and LED lighting, the costs could be brought down further.
To me, the most exciting aspect of the solar road is what sort of possibilities it opens up.
1. The electric car is coming. Imagine cars that charge while they drive, or at least when you park at a mall!
2. By incorporating the energy infrastructure into the roads, you eliminate the need for overhead power lines and the associated battles that accompany the building of new lines. Power lines are crucial for other renewables such as wind.
3. If done right, you start to build the mythical 'smart grid'
Certainly there are an abundance of problems that may occur, but, I haven't read anything on this site that is not solvable. Everything required to make this project work is already a proven technology. The only question-mark is if they can be combined and if governments and business will embrace this idea.
Solar Roadways Get DoT Funding
Perhaps, but according to the article, the panels will heat themselves thereby eliminating the need for snowplows.
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