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Cisco Opposes Net Neutrality

ThreeKelvin Re:What About Electricity? (337 comments)

Not at the moment, but it's being worked on, and it's called "Smart Grid".

The most important difference between Smart Grid and lack of net neutrality is that with Smart grid it's the customer who owns the appliance that gets paid (or refunded) if power isn't available for the appliance. The idea is that you'll be able to plug in your electric car in the evening, and the car will then negotiate for power, so that it is fully charged, at latest the next morning. It's a win for the costumer and the electricity company, unlike lack of net neutrality.

QoS for networks could perhaps learn something from the ideas being worked on in Smart Grid - I wouldn't mind being paid for allowing the internet provider to provide worse services for some packages.

about 3 months ago

The World's Worst Planes: Aircraft Designs That Failed

ThreeKelvin Re:Does not matter (209 comments)


about 3 months ago

Asteroid Impacts Bigger Risk Than Thought

ThreeKelvin Re:Am I reading this right (172 comments)

Sure, no problem.

The probability of a hit in an urban area given a single meteor is 0.3*0.03, i.e., 30% land mass and of that 3% urban area. (Meteors don't impact uniformly over the area of the earth like that and urban areas aren't distributed evenly across the earth, so my assumptions here are wrong. Still I'm only guestimating so it's good enough for now.)

The probability of a miss is then 1 - 0.3*0.03 and 100 misses in a row (2 meteors per year, 50 years) is (1 - 0.3*0.03)^100. One or more meteors (larger than 1 kilton) hitting an urban area in 50 years is thus 1 - (1 - 0.3*0.03)^100.

about 4 months ago

Asteroid Impacts Bigger Risk Than Thought

ThreeKelvin Re:Am I reading this right (172 comments)

Your math is off. If your numbers are correct, the risk of having at least one meteor over an urban area during those 50 years is:

P(N>1) = 1-P(N=0) = 1-(1-0.3*0.03)^100 = 60%

about 4 months ago

UN Report: Climate Changes Overwhelming

ThreeKelvin Re:Projections (987 comments)

2010 and 2011 were La Niña years, i.e., years where the sea surface temperature is 3-5 degrees celcius below normal. What you're seeing is weather, not climate.

Now, if it continues like that for another ten-fifteen years, our models were wrong and you'll see me running in the street, celebrating.

about 5 months ago

Is the Tesla Model S Pedal Placement A Safety Hazard?

ThreeKelvin Re:The Worst Pedal Arrangement (394 comments)

Nope, not the least bit embarrased. Why excactly should I be again?

about 5 months ago

Ex-Head of Troubled Health Insurance Site May Sue, Citing 'Cover-Up'

ThreeKelvin Re:ObamaCare is a Horrific Debacle (162 comments)

I set out to use the GDP per capita of Switzerland and the US (the two first on the list given by GP) to show you how you didn't use the numbers correctly. It turned out that the spendings on health care per capita of the two countries are almost the same*, and the joke was on me.

*(8676.91 $US per capita per year for Switzerland and 8272.64 $US per capita per year for the US)

Colour me surprised!

about 5 months ago

Study: Happiness Improves Developers' Problem Solving Skills

ThreeKelvin Re:From TFA (91 comments)

One of the important, but often belittled, tasks of science is to investigate the obvious. Some times something "obvious" turns out to be false. On the other hand, if the "obvious" turns out to be true, then we have evidence, and not just common sense to back it up.

Checking and double checking what we think we know is important, and we do it so that we may gain a better understanding of the world we live in.

about 5 months ago

California Fights Drought With Data and Psychology, Yielding 5% Usage Reduction

ThreeKelvin Re:Did you read the ATL? (362 comments)

You have a point, but you're a long way from cutting into actual need.

I live in a country where everybody has access to high quality ground water. Our avarage daily water consumption is per capita less than a third of that of a the US, where you don't have access to high quality water. (our tap water is cleaner than bottled water.)

I was shocked by the disregard for water the first time I visited the US. Just as an example, your toilet bowls are huge lakes of water compared to what I'm used to. Flushing all that water just made me feel guilty.

about 6 months ago

German Chancellor Proposes European Communications Network

ThreeKelvin Re:as they say (197 comments)

Thats a rather bleak, defeatist attitude, you know.

I'd rather go down fighting than just accept the status quo, and if the "bullies" move to my preferred battleground, so that I can actually fight them, instead of staying out of reach, I'll see that as a small step forward.

about 6 months ago

German Chancellor Proposes European Communications Network

ThreeKelvin Re:as they say (197 comments)

Foreign bullies I can't do anything about. Domestic bullies I can drag to court, try to vote out of the government, smear in the domestic media, etc.

I prefer to fight my bullies in my own back yard, thank you.

about 6 months ago

NSF Report Flawed; Americans Do Not Believe Astrology Is Scientific

ThreeKelvin Re:Still a problem, but not as bad. (326 comments)

It is - the remedy for the uneducated masses is education. I don't know of any remedy for superstition. (Just look at the creationists.)

about 6 months ago

Controversial Execution In Ohio Uses New Lethal Drug Combination

ThreeKelvin Re:If that wasn't crueal and unreasonable... (1038 comments)

I know you're trolling but, I am proud. So thank you.

It took quite a lot of political pressure to get this through the EU. But it's quite worth it. Refusing to support other countries in this particular traditions is one of the better things that has happened in politics over here the last few years.

Also, correction for the summary: The EU didn't ban selling certain drugs to prisons, they banned exporting drugs to a country that would use them for killing, i.e., the prison could have used the drugs from Lundbeck, but the EU would then ban export of the drugs to the US, even to hospitals. So, if you'd like to put a negative spin on what we did you could say that we held you hostage and threatened to deny you medicine.

about 7 months ago

Hackers Gain "Full Control" of Critical SCADA Systems

ThreeKelvin Re:These issues have been flagged for 10 years (195 comments)

I ran a part of the process plant by hand during the commisioning phase for the last automation project I was on. Working together with an operator I could barely keep up with one fifth of full capacity for four hours and we were both completely drained afterwards.

The complexity of modern process plants is mind-bogling to people who haven't seen them - and even when they've seen them they don't understand that all the valves, pumps, heat exchangers, etc., around them are doing a finely choregraphied balet behind the scenes. The manpower needed for running a process plant by hand is in the neighborhood of 10-20 times that of running an automated plant, and even then the throughput will be less and the quality of the resulting product lower.

about 7 months ago

Six Electric Cars Can Power an Office Building

ThreeKelvin Re:Why not batteries (296 comments)

At my company I'd yell something unintelligently and grab the nearest car, and everything would sort itself out afterwards. I walk to work, so I've been in the situation. It's really not a problem.

about 8 months ago

Factory-In-a-Day Project Aims To Deploy Work-Ready Robots Within 24 Hours

ThreeKelvin Re:High unemplyment and we suddenly need more robo (157 comments)

Automation engineer here.

I (obviously) don't think that automation is inherently unethical, but I very much agree that societies can use it in unethical ways, e.g. for concentrating the wealth of a country on only a small percentage of the population. I don't see the current skewed distribution of wealth as a problem of automation, but as a problem in the government. I miss a good debate about who should benefit from the increased productivity, how the wealth should be redistributed in a "fair" way, and what role the government should take in this endevour. I miss hearing views like Nick Hanauer's.

about 9 months ago

Snowden Document Says Dutch Secret Service Hacks Internet Forums

ThreeKelvin Re:Huh? What? (162 comments)

It might not be news, but it is still stuff that matters!

I want the world I live in to be a good place, not a place where, as you put it, people are tortured and spied upon. I want to be able to sleep at night, knowing that my government works for basic human rights, including the right to privacy and the right to not be tortured in some prison camp!

The more the wrongdoings of the governments of the west are exposed, the easier it is to stand up against them using non-violent means like voting and demonstrating. So, don't come here and tell me that it isn't in the category news and/or stuff that matters. I for one don't accept the world I live in, and I want to change it for the better.

about 9 months ago

ISS Astronauts Fire-Up Awesome 'Cubesat Cannon'

ThreeKelvin Re:rotation right from when shot? (52 comments)

Yep, perfectly normal. Most (if not all) cubesats tumble when they're jettisoned from their launcher.

For them not to tumble when they're jettisoned, they would have to have their center of mass perfectly on top of the spring and they'd need to have the exact same friction against the launcher on all four sides. It's much easier to just fit them with a de-tumbling system, e.g. a magnet on a spring.

about 9 months ago

Robots: a Working Breed At the Dairy

ThreeKelvin Re:How many humans does the farm require? (65 comments)

That's one side of the coin, and the're some tendencies that really point in that direction - the most important being the capital needed for automation. Automation is horribly expensive up front, but pays off over the long run.

But as an automation engineer I really hope we can find some way to stop this madness before it goes too far down that path. I don't do automation because I want to enable the rich, I do automation because I want to help lower the prices of goods so that everybody are able to afford them. (Without having to leech off cild labor in third world countries.) I want to minimize hard, dangerous, boring and/or manual labor as much as possible to enable the common man with free time and better buying power.

The problem as I see it isn't with the capitalists, it's with informing the common population that there is another way, so that they will wote the right people into office instead of yet another front man for large multinational corporations.

about 9 months ago


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