Why Elon Musk's Batteries Frighten Electric Companies
But all I see putting the Utilities business model in jeopardy is inept management and political pandering. Rooftop solar and battery storage cannot even begin to compete with efficient central generation and distribution. Utilities however have no incentive to run an efficient organization. For decades that have been drunk on the power of captive rate-payers, with no competitive pressure to be efficient. Rooftop solar and batteries threaten to bring that competition to the game. Modern utilities are so bloated and inefficient that the rooftop solar and battery combination is a threat despite being much less efficient. So yeah, utilities are scared, but not for the reasons, or in the manner the Solar proponents claim, but scared they will have to grow up, and abandon the monopoly model and actually run an efficient business. Competition always frightens the monopolist.
Possible Reason Behind Version Hop to Windows 10: Compatibility
If Windows 10 (or whatever they ultimately decide to call it) has that triple damned CHARMS screen, then NO THANKS! I am SOOOOO sick of that darn thing!
When Everything Works Like Your Cell Phone
You're old enough to own LPs and Cds?? Wow, you must be ancient!! ;)
I have records that go back to pre-1920, many having reached the century milestone, (I have one from 1908) and they still play fine. I transferred them to digital, and with a little tweaking, they sound even better than they did on my wind-up Victrola! Oh, yeah, my wind up Victrola dates from the 1920's and it still plays fine. Can't say the same for my many cassette decks, DAT decks, CDs, CD Players, DVD Players, MP3 players or computers... I'll take the "Limited Lifetime" of early phonograph records over that of a cellphone any day.
I agree with you wholeheartedly about wanting choice though...
Ask Slashdot: Which VHS Player To Buy?
I went thru this a couple of years ago. I had hundreds of movies on VHS I had bought over many years. I had a very good VHS deck to play them on. I spent several weeks playing them into my computer, using Pinnacle Studio to trim the beginnings and ends and remove some of the noise, and Handbrake to further transform them to MP4 files on my Plex server. The result was OK, if not spectacular. Since them I have found many of my favorite movies in the DVD bargain bin at Walmart, at much better quality than my VHS originals, and many more popped up on TCM or Cinemax, where I could capture a nice clean copy. In the end, many of the VHS files on my Plex server got over-written with better copies. I also discovered I could simply watch many of the same movies on Netflix, negating the value of owning a copy at all.
For example, many years ago I bought a VHS release of the freshly restored "Vertigo", one of my favorite movies. A couple of weeks ago, TCM aired the same print, much better than VHS quality, and of course it is also on Netflix. The effort I spent making my own MP4 of my own VHS copy was a waste. I still enjoy the movie, but rather the low quality of my own Plex copy, I just watch it on Netflix.
Think carefully about what videos you want to copy, and you may find that there are few, if any, you really want to bother with.
Ask Slashdot: Are You Apocalypse-Useful?
A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
-Robert A. Heinlein
Do We Really Have a Shortage of STEM Workers?
I call BULLSHIT! I know several well qualified STEM workers, myself included, who are unemployed, desperately trying to find jobs, and can't get to first base with people like you. You have a preconceived stereotype, and I don't fit it. My skills, experience, ability or willingness to work mean nothing. Believe me, I KNOW from hard-won personal experience.
Ray Kurzweil Talks Google's Big Plans For Artificial Intelligence
Be alright with me. Just as long as I could say I worked for Ray K. At Google! Bragging rights, ya know... Besides, I am just immodest enough to think that once I got going, I might make a contribution or two along the way...
Ray Kurzweil Talks Google's Big Plans For Artificial Intelligence
So, how does one go about getting a job in this fascinating group? Heck, I'd sweep the floors, if nothing else....
Ask Slashdot: Distributed Online Storage For Families?
The idea is to place a box with a few TB of storage in each home. Link all those TB together into mirrored and replicated virtual drive structure, for sharing all the "stuff" we have. Also each home would have a "private" space that is still replicated and distributed, but visible only to that household.
Additional services? Not really, but if the box is there running, anything that could be layered on top might be nice additions. A Skype style "intercom" could be useful too. Just noodling additional ideas beyond the basic backup and share of family data.
Yeah, Skydrive and Skype do most all this.
Ask Slashdot: Distributed Online Storage For Families?
Skydrive is currently the primary cloud service we are using. That is what we're considering an alternative from...
LibreOffice 4.2 Busts Out GPU Mantle Support and Corporate IT Integration
As someone using LibreOffice to write a huge manuscript that has been in development for several years, I would like some really good change control tools. I may be dense, and not quite understanding the problem, but it seems to me that integrating LibreOffice with Github to support distributed editing of huge projects, and version control, would be a natural... Am I just to ignorant to understand why this isn't being done?
Ask Slashdot: Tablets For Papers; Are We There Yet?
Works well for me. I just stuff PDFs into my dropbox folder on my desktop, and read em on the iPad. Makes for a happy combination. There is also an Android tablet in the house, works about as well. Seems like a solved problem from my perspective. I never print anything for reading any more...
Ask Slashdot: AT&T's Data Usage Definition Proprietary?
I live in the San Francisco Bay Area, almost within rock-throwing distance of Silicon Valley, and I have ZERO broadband available. The only way I can get on the Internet is via a Verizon 4GLTE MiFi, at $10/GB. And THEY constantly screw up the billing too!
Analog Designer Bob Pease Dies In Car Crash
I used to live for his regular columns. I loved his wit, and curmudgeonly attitude. I met him a few times and found him the same in person as he was in print. He will be missed.
Yeah, VW beetles were dangerous little cars. I drove one for years (a 1964 model) and I was very careful, and knew what a death trap they could be. But how many of us ride motorcycles, or other dangerous vehicles. Life is a series of risks. I guess we could wrap ourselves in cotton balls and stay home. He was not a "damned fool" just a human being who chose to do something he knew was risky, who no doubt weighed the risks, and decided to go ahead.
Microsoft Applies For Page-Turn Animation Patent
Robert A. Heinlein in his 1957 time-travel novel described exactly this idea in detail when his protagonist awoke in the "far distant" year of 2000. So it is hardly new.
FCC Asks You To Test Your Broadband Speeds
I live in the outskirts of a major metropolitan area, the San Francisco Bay Area. I cannot get what a slashdoter would consider broadband in any form. The local Telco insists they want to sell me 6 Mbit DSL and that they can serve me. But they simply cannot. The local DSLAM is over 18,000 feet from my door, and it is full with no available ports. Further, the lines that serve me have load coils on them which the Telco refuses to remove. Because of the load coils, even dial-up sucks. I have been fighting them, begging them for ten years to give me service. Further, they have a cell phone site less than 1000 feet from my door, could put a DSLAM there and serve me nicely but refuse. Yet hardly a week goes by that I do not get a letter or phone call trying to sell me a service that they do not have and cannot deliver. As for Cable? They are not within 2 miles of me. We need some oversight to force the Telco to actually provide the service they claim to be able to. By removing load coils and upgrading the DSLAM they could probably give me 384 KBPS. Not quite real broadband, but better than what I have now. But they refuse. By putting a DSLAM in the cell phone facility, they could easily give me 6 mbps, but refuse. They have dark fiber that is sitting unused in the cell site, but won't sell me service.
Yet they constantly bug me to buy their nonexistent service. I am not usually a proponent of government intervention, but I do not see any other way to force them to deliver service. They want the relatively easy low-hanging fruit, but refuse to upgrade the infrastructure to serve the more marginal cases.
Our Low-Tech Tax Code
No it can't. Many many people, including yours truly cannot buy health insurance for any price.
I am healthy, no pre-existing conditions, and have money in the bank. I am also gray-haired and unemployed. They won't take my money and I've tried and tried.
What Is the State of Linux Security DVR Software?
Actually, you're quite wrong. I want to avoid closed "off-the-shelf" products if at all possible. But I want a really good system, and am trying to learn what is available in the Linux world that will meet my needs. I am leaning heavily toward Zoneminder, but want to know about alternatives I may have missed.
I am planning a large server infrastructure that will include applications such as Asterisk, MythTV and even Misterhouse. I am very much wondering as well about sharing server platforms, thus looking for caveats about combining, say, Asterisk and a few security cameras on the same server.
Frankly, your post is offensive and does not contribute to the discussion.
Difficult Times For SF Magazines
I agree that Analog has really, seriously deteriorated. I have been a subscriber since the 1950's. I would eagerly await each issue, devour it in a single sitting, and then impatiently await the next one.
A few years ago I began to notice I was reading fewer and fewer stories. For every one I enjoyed, there would be one that was inane and incomprehensible. Then there would be more and more worthless ones, and fewer and fewer good ones.
When I began to see more and more issues that were entirely devoid of Science Fiction content, and filled with inane trash, I became more and more unhappy with them. I started just tossing each new issue on the shelf unopened, perhaps getting around to checking them out weeks later.
I finally realized I hadn't found an issue worth reading in over a year, and renewal time came up. I wrote them a nice letter and explained why I was dropping them. I promised to check the newsstand issues for content and that I would resubscribe when I started seeing something I wanted to read. That was three years ago.
They've been dead a long time. It is time to bury the corpse.
Long-Term PC Preservation Project?
First point, Lots of us have electronics from 1958 that still works fine. As someone who collects old radios and stuff, I can attest that most electronics lasts a long time pretty well, especially if stored well.
Second point, everyone rapping on about how the capacitors won't last are mostly ignorant people repeating stuff they've heard. The capacitors that won't last are the cheapo junk capacitors made in China. Quality caps last just fine. I have a "Junk box" full of quality American and Japanese made caps dating from the 1960's and 1970's that I STILL use as repair parts when I need a capacitor. Never have had a bad one, and I'm talking boxes of hundreds of them.
Of course, most of the computers you are talking about are probably filled with crap Chinese capacitors. On the other hand, if they're already a decade old, maybe not. The China junk usually dies in a couple of years. I've repaired many a two year old computer whose capacitors have failed.
I have quality Collins radios from the 1940's that still have all original caps (and tubes) and still work fine. On the other hand, I have a very expensive 7.1 channel surround sound amp system, about 5 years old, and it's power supply caps went out recently. I pulled out a couple caps from my junk box, caps old enough to vote, wired em in, and the Amp lives on.
Media, yeah, that's another story. Most will be unreadable in 50 years. Quality optical might have a chance. Paper tape will last. Yeah, that's the ticket. Print the MSDOS install disks to paper tape! That'll work ;) Windows will need a LOT of tape.
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