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Tesla Releases Electric Car Patents To the Public

Spoke Good Job Tesla - Now how about that GPL source? (211 comments)

This is a great move by Tesla and I hope that more companies follow suit.

Now - how about releasing the source code to owners for GPL software and derivatives you ship in your vehicles?

So far I am not aware of any owners who have been successful in getting access to that code.

about 2 months ago
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New Battery Tech From Japan Could Supercharge EVs

Spoke Re:Let me know when it gets to production (if ever (81 comments)

That's a good point, it could help plug-in hybrids, or even regular hybrids.

But given that it's not very energy dense and other chemistries, what would you rather have? A battery that starts out with 25-50% more energy density and degrades 20-30% over the life of the car, or a battery that starts out with less but only loses a couple percent? I'd personally have the battery that starts out with more energy density even if at the end of life the density is similar.

about 3 months ago
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New Battery Tech From Japan Could Supercharge EVs

Spoke Re:Let me know when it gets to production (if ever (81 comments)

Long lasting batteries are great but not as important as lower cost and higher capacity to weight ratio...

Exactly. The energy density of these cells are very average at best.

It's nice that they last a long time as that makes them very useful for certain applications, but for EVs that's not the major issue preventing EVs from being more appealing. The major issue is energy density and cost.

Extreme durability might help with the cost aspect as batteries would hold more value for re-use after a car is otherwise useless, but it would be for other applications such as perhaps grid-storage where having batteries that basically last forever would be very useful.

about 3 months ago
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New Battery Tech From Japan Could Supercharge EVs

Spoke Re:Intense skepticism. Fraud? (81 comments)

The BIG issue is that the battery would not use an expensive, scarce metal: Lithium. The fact that the author doesn't mention that indicates he understands extremely little.

But Lithium is not expensive or scarce relative to current costs of lithium battery manufacture. Other metals and manufacturing costs dominate the current cost of lithium cells.

about 3 months ago
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New Battery Tech From Japan Could Supercharge EVs

Spoke Let me know when it gets to production (if ever) (81 comments)

PR like this claiming the next breakthrough in batteries has been coming out for years, but what actually makes it to production are basically minor tweaks to existing chemistry.

Inevitably what happens is something keeps the technology from being mass produced, or is too expensive, or simply does not function as advertised.

I hope I'm wrong, but I'm not holding my breath.

about 3 months ago
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BMW Created the Most Efficient Electric Car In the US

Spoke Re:Range is the issue (258 comments)

Uh, you were the one who was comparing the i3 to the Model S.

Regardless of the cars being in different classes, you still see people comparing all types electrified vehicles against each other.

I know a LOT of Nissan LEAF owners who sold their LEAFs for a Model S, for example. The LEAF is a class down for the i3 (so even further away from the Model S), yet there you go.

I have a LEAF and have considered the same thing, but just can't justify the luxury car price tag and just don't need the extra range all that often.

about 4 months ago
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BMW Created the Most Efficient Electric Car In the US

Spoke Re:Range is the issue (258 comments)

You should just use the EPA numbers which measure energy from the wall. Many people suspect that the major difference in efficiency between the 60 and 85 kWh Model S were the tires/wheels used for testing - the 60 kWh Model S is lighter, but no-one except Tesla seems to know by how much.

Model S 85 kWh: 38 kWh / 100 mi or 2.60 mi / kWh
Model S 60 kWh: 35 kWh / 100 mi or 2.85 mi / kWh
BMW i3: 27 kWh / 100 mi or 3.7 mi / kWh
Nissan LEAF: 30 kWh / 100 mi or 3.3 mi / kWh
Spark EV: 28 kWh / 100 mi or 3.57 mi / kWh

The i3 is about 30% more efficient than the Model S - very impressive! On the city cycle, it's 50% more efficient! I imagine if the i3 were a lower and longer car (and thus more aerodynamic) it'd do even better on the highway cycle.

about 4 months ago
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Decommissioning Nuclear Plants Costing Far More Than Expected

Spoke Re:Nuclear power is too expensive (288 comments)

You forgot to mention SONGs: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S...

2 GW of nuclear power mothballed right after they finished spending $671M upgrading them. And who do you think the utilities want to pay for the lost revenue? I'll give you a hint - they sure don't wan it coming out of their guaranteed profit margin...

about 4 months ago
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The Koch Brothers Attack On Solar Energy

Spoke Re:It doesn't have to supply all our power (769 comments)

There is this stupid tendency here on slashdot to dismiss partial solutions to any problem as unworkable. Solar does not have to supply all our energy needs to still be a good idea. The economics of it still need to make sense but there is no principled reason why it should not be a significant part of the energy supply equation.

Not just slashdot, it happens everywhere.

"Electric cars suck, I can't drive it more than miles / charge!"

about 4 months ago
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Dyn.com Ends Free Dynamic DNS

Spoke Re:Viable Replacement? (242 comments)

Yeah, this. For way less than the price of what Dyn charges for DNS service, you can get your own domain name AND dynamic DNS service.

All with a company that doesn't try to screw you over every year, too.

about 4 months ago
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Tesla Model S Has Hidden Ethernet Port, User Runs Firefox On the 17" Screen

Spoke Re:Do they distribute the source? (208 comments)

There's a lot of GPL software in Ubuntu, starting with the Linux kernel. Does Tesla distribute the source code to Model S owners that ask?

I am not aware, yet. Have only see one owner be vocal in the past about trying to get it, but haven't . A few relevant threads. Lots of noise and general ignorance about Copyright in there, so prepare yourself.

Anyone want to get the source code for the Linux (etc.) in your car?
Running on Linux
Copyright (and Libel) Discussion

about 5 months ago
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Tesla Model S Has Hidden Ethernet Port, User Runs Firefox On the 17" Screen

Spoke Re:Everything is watching you these days... (208 comments)

Actually, what's more likely is that they saw his post on the Tesla Motors Club forum detailing what he'd done and then connect the dots between the forum post and ownership data:

Successful connection on the Model S internal Ethernet network

Tesla has been known to connect forum users to actual owners and proactively contact the owners via phone when they report problems with their car there.

about 5 months ago
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Intel's New Desktop SSD Is an Overclocked Server Drive

Spoke Re:To little, too late. (111 comments)

Even with built-in battery or UPS, while that reduces the risk of unexpected power loss, in my experience it still happens.

As far as comparing reliability of SSDs to HDDs, an actual study found that SSDs were much more likely to lose lots of data, sometimes bricking the entire drive.

http://www.cse.ohio-state.edu/...

Enterprise HDDs were the most reliable, even the best SSD they tested was not as good (though similar to consumer grade HDD).

Unfortunately, the study does not reveal which drives were tested.

about 6 months ago
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Intel's New Desktop SSD Is an Overclocked Server Drive

Spoke Re:To little, too late. (111 comments)

But the main reason for the Intel 730 is to get power loss protection so your data doesn't get scrambled if your computer suddenly loses power.

The popular Samsung 840 series don't include that.

Where are you getting your failure rates from?

about 6 months ago
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Why Does Facebook Need To Read My Text Messages?

Spoke Re:SMS Integration (293 comments)

No, you could use the Facebook Messenger app as a replacement for the crappy stock Android SMS app and it would use your phone to send/receive SMS messages just like the newer Google Hangouts does.

You could also use it to just send regular Facebook messages, just like you can use Hangouts to send messages to other Google users using a regular internet/data connection.

about 7 months ago
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Why Does Facebook Need To Read My Text Messages?

Spoke Re:SMS Integration (293 comments)

The last big update of Facebook Messenger for Android not long ago REMOVES the ability to send SMS messages. There is also no way to send SMS messages through the main Facebook app. Why would Facebook remove the ability to send SMS messages through their apps if their long-term goal was to be able to send SMS messages through their apps? IMO their goal is to have all messages routed through them directly instead of SMS, but they really screwed up by removing a feature that a lot of Android users used.

Coincidentally, Google Hangouts added the ability to send SMS messages right around the same time that Facebook Messenger removed theirs.

about 7 months ago
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Record Wind Power Levels Trigger Energy Price Fall Across Europe

Spoke Re:Uh, that's a huge spread (226 comments)

Obviously, one would need to know the forecast prices for at least some period of time in the future and use that to find the compromise in convenience and price when running said appliance.

Obviously you may not want to wait for prices to drop in certain cases.

about 7 months ago
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Record Wind Power Levels Trigger Energy Price Fall Across Europe

Spoke Re:bfd (226 comments)

In California, at least, I'm pretty sure there is no markup on wholesale prices. Utilities get a regulated fixed profit based on distribution charges.

about 7 months ago
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Oil Train Explosion Triggers Evacuation In North Dakota

Spoke Re:Shouldn't have to run oil by rail (199 comments)

> as evidenced by the enourmous growth in PV generation as well.

No, that is evidence of government subsidies, and laws requiring them to charge a extra fee to customers directed to provide more clean energy.

The rate of growth has been enhanced by subsidies, but even without them, the industry would still be undergoing very rapid growth as costs have come down an order of magnitude.

about 8 months ago
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Oil Train Explosion Triggers Evacuation In North Dakota

Spoke Re:Shouldn't have to run oil by rail (199 comments)

I love it how the goal-posts keep on moving - and how a solution has to solve 100% of the problems or it is a complete fail. Why can't a solution simply be a step in the right direction? Or a solution that works for a very large portion of the population?

On to your arguments:

Tesla will be able to get you from Virginia to Tuscon and Colorado via their Supercharger network in the next month or two. St Louis will be accessible by the end of the year.

Will it be as fast as a gas/diesel vehicle? No, but for cross-country road trips just rent a Prius if you're aiming for maximum speed and efficiency. And as many people will attest, actually slowing down an enjoying the scenery can enhance the road-trip experience. Or simply use a plug-in hybrid - all your local miles will be electric - and you can still have your road trips. The vast majority of your annual miles are within 40 miles of home - low hanging fruit.

As far as 18-wheelers: Most of that cargo should be moved to rail leaving short/medium haul trucking. Short-haul trucks can be electrified, medium-long haul can use natural gas and/or fuel cells. Railways can also be electrified (most trains are simply diesel generators that run electric motors, anyway). Aircraft are a tough nut to crack - bio-fuels are probably our best bet there in the near term.

And as far as power plants go - we need more low-carbon power plants regardless of whether or not we electrify the fleet. But a huge portion of the fleet can easily be powered without substantial changes to the electrical grid.

about 8 months ago

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