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Comments

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Slashdot Asks: How Do You Pay Your Taxes?

bkmoore Re:American Expat - still on the hook (375 comments)

That's the sticking point. I qualify for citizenship in the country where I live, but do not want to renounce my U.S. citizenship. So I stay American. The IRS needs to understand that people live in foreign countries for a lot of reasons besides to not pay taxes. When people hide their money from the IRS, the money is what leaves the country, not the person. When the person leaves, it's usually for other reasons such as a job, marriage, etc.

yesterday
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Slashdot Asks: How Do You Pay Your Taxes?

bkmoore American Expat - still on the hook (375 comments)

I'm an American expat. The USA requires me to file a tax return annually, even though I live, work and pay taxes in a foreign country. Because of my expat status, I have to do a paper return, at least as far as I know. I get to do the whole paperwork drill twice, once for my adopted northern-Europen country, with a 50% tax rate. And then again for the IRS, where I list everything out, deduct local taxes (50%), convert it all to US dollars (no official exchange rate given), then at to the bottom of the form cross off that nothing is owed and sign it and mail it. I should probably hire a professional tax accountant to do the IRS return, but cannot afford to do so. It costs around 600€ for a simple run-of-the mill return. It's getting more and more complicated each year.

Honestly, I am considering not filing with the IRS any more, because there's no positive benefit. If I do everything right, I don't get into trouble. If I do it wrong, I get into trouble and might have to pay. If I don't do it at all, no one notices. At least as long as I don't go back to working in the U.S. But that's not really much of an incentive, considering that my home, my job and my family are all here. The IRS should at least offer a raffle to win a prize, like an expenses paid trip for my family to Disneyland or something like that. I guess I would be a candidate for changing my citizenship, as I speak the language perfectly and am very well integrated in the local culture. I was born an American, served in the Marines twice in Iraq, etc., and I don't want to give that up, even if I'l probably never live in the U.S. again. I still enjoy flying the American flag on the 4th of July and grilling hamburgers for my friends. I'm not bitter at the IRS or the U.S. government. I just wish they would make it easier for a working stiff such as myself to stay compliant and "do his duty."

yesterday
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IRS Misses XP Deadline, Pays Microsoft Millions For Patches

bkmoore Re:Windows XP did not instantly become unsafe Apri (322 comments)

What can you do on a nice shiny new i5core Dell box that your XP system can not?

Access more than 4 GB of RAM which is necessary for most modern science and engineering applications. Same goes for video editing, graphics, etc. applications.

Where are the productivity enhancements to pay for this investment?? ... I am waiting. That's right there is none.

If all people did all day was word processing and spread sheets, a vintage 68040 Mac II running System 7 with WordPerfect and Lotus 1-2-3 would still be adequate. But try supporting vintage Macs in a productivity environment, I would hope your supply of SCSI hard drives doesn't run out. Same goes for XP, spare parts are getting more and more scarce with time.

Look you like technology like many of us and that is great. But at some point it is trivial eye candy. If security wasn't an issue no one would bother upgrading except enthusiasts.

I think you're just a troll. Most people on /. would know that Win 7 or a modern 64-bit LINUX compared to XP is more than just eye candy.

3 days ago
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Cuba: US Using New Weapon Against Us -- Spam

bkmoore Re:The sheer volume! (137 comments)

This is pretty serious business. At a potential maximum of 140 octects/message, that's (just)Over 40 Megabytes delivered in the course of 5 hours. Just think. To deliver an attack like that, the US government must have had some sort of time machine, with Ronald Reagan shouting "Now witness the destructive power of this fully armed and operational ARPANET!" before turning on, um, maybe a couple dozen modems at once.

Cuba's lucky. A lot of the modems got a busy signal. Otherwise it could have been worse.

about a week ago
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Smart Car Tipping Trending In San Francisco

bkmoore Re:San Fran = the new Detroit (369 comments)

What caused the decline of the big three was bad management, not necessarily GREED. First they were too slow to take foreign competition in the U.S. market seriously. Then later on, they were too focused on the American market to make the cars they needed to compete in foreign markets. Especially the ones where the cost of gas is higher, and the roads are smaller... which is most countries.

about a week ago
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Smart Car Tipping Trending In San Francisco

bkmoore Re:It's not trending. (369 comments)

The NFL investigating mystery Teslas being tipped. Sounds like a plot for a South Park episode.

about a week ago
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The Connected Home's Battle of the Bulbs

bkmoore Re:..and we need this technology why exactly? (176 comments)

I also want lighting that fits in the fixtures that I have and doesn't protrude beyond the shade. Almost all of these "better lightbulbs" are just too large. Also why make intelligent light bulbs? Wouldn't it be better to put the connectivity into the light fixture, especially if it has more than one bulb?

about two weeks ago
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The 3D Economy — What Happens When Everyone Prints Their Own Shoes?

bkmoore Re:Watch "how it's made" first (400 comments)

As I mentioned earlier, 3-D is awsome for when you want ONE part for some old car, machine, airplane, etc. that no longer is supported. For making thousands of parts, not so much.....

Agreed, as long as the mechanical properties of the printed material are suitable for the part being replaced. For most metal parts, traditional machining is more economical. Trying to replicate traditional manufacturing processes is a dead end IMHO. These processes were optimized over the last 4000 years, at least since the bronze age.

OTOH, 3D printing is really interesting because it allows the creation of new types of structures such as hollow parts with complicated internal geometries. Such structures cannot be made (easily) by any traditional forming processes. - That's actually the direction where I think 3D printing could become the next big thing; ulltra-reliable machines that cannot be assembled or disassembled. Printing a 3D gun and assembling it out of discrete parts is dumb. To get this old crank really excited, somebody would have to print a working mechanical watch, right out of the printer.

about two weeks ago
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The 3D Economy — What Happens When Everyone Prints Their Own Shoes?

bkmoore Re:Watch "how it's made" first (400 comments)

....Or maybe structural plastic manufacturing....

Structural plastic developer here, three years of professional experience in this area. The problem from a purely structural standpoint is that 3d printing cannot print fibre-reinforced plastics. There has been some preliminary work on this at the Frauenhofer Institut in Stuttgart, Germany. http://www.ipa.fraunhofer.de/ Their solution is running a nylon thread through the printer nozzle. For this, they have a spool of thread and a mechanism similar to a sewing machine on the printer head. This creates a part with a continuous thread that is oriented in the raster pattern traveled by the printer head. But the part does not have the characteristics of an injection-molded fibre-reinforced part, which would have many small fibers with many various orientations. I visited the site personally and saw their research first hand. They still have some technological problems to work out. For example, I don't think they understand shrinkage fully and would have a hard time complying with engineering tolerances. But for a quick prototype, more than adequate. Prototypes can be made to fit. ;-)

I won't go into material cost. Any industrial 3D printing outfit, that's halfway serious about what they do, would use raw granulate and not buy cartridges. But the main short coming of 3D printing as opposed to injection molding in a production environment is the cycle time. A complex part with tight tolerances (TG 3 after DIN 16742) of around 100-200 Gramms in an fibre-reinforced PA6 or PA12 can be injection molded in about two to three minutes, depending on injection temperature and cooling time in the mold, etc. The actual injection time is around one second for a reference. Otherwise material hardens during the injection process. The time required to print the same part would be many hours or even a day or more, depending on the printer used. I was at a 3D outfit and showed them a simple part of less than 10 Gramms. It would have taken in their estimation 30 minutes to print. Not good for mass production.

Where 3D printing is actually useful is generating rapid 3D prototypes or for doing custom parts in non-reinforced plastics. But custom parts, if they do wind up in the hands of a customer, aren't of good enough quality for my company to sell without hand-finishing to at least simulate the surface finish and texture of an injection-molded part. Acetone can be used here to make a smooth surface finish. Costs are high, but less than the cost of making a mold for a one-of-a-kind part. Alternatively custom parts can be made the old-fashioned way, that is by hand.

Usually the marketing people want the 3D parts more than the developers. Sometimes we use printed parts in development prototypes for parts where we haven't gotten around to making a prototype mold for. But these parts have limits, they usually cost a lot and if I need a high two digit or a three-digit-quantity, it's usually much cheaper to make a prototype mold. But sometimes it's difficult to convince management of that, which is probably a common problem. But after a couple of projects, the management's starting to come around to my point of view on this.

about two weeks ago
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The 3D Economy — What Happens When Everyone Prints Their Own Shoes?

bkmoore Re:They'll be printing money next! (400 comments)

I thought you were going to say they would print gold bars!!! But wait, then you would need gold to print gold. We've got a conundrum...

about two weeks ago
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NASA Puts Its New Spacesuit Design To a Public Vote

bkmoore Re:Pimp my Spacesuit... (127 comments)

You know that the whole Pimp-my-X meme has jumped the shark when NASA scientists think that they need Tron style space suits and that they actually think they look modern and cool...

Proving once again that NASA hasn't quite gotten out of the '80s yet.

about three weeks ago
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The Mystery of the 'Only Camera To Come Back From the Moon'

bkmoore Re:Our first act on the moon (54 comments)

Let's litter.

If someone dropped a vintage Hasselblad camera in my back yard and left, I wouldn't be one to complain.

about three weeks ago
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Russian State TV Anchor: Russia Could Turn US To "Radioactive Ash"

bkmoore Re:Allow Russians to vote with their feet (878 comments)

And we should trust this vote why? ...

Crimean Special Election Ballot (English Translation):
1. Mark Here_____ if you want to be an notionally 'independent' country that is in a slowly decaying orbit around mother Russia.
2. Mark Here_____ if you really really really want to join Russia now!!!

about a month ago
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Russian State TV Anchor: Russia Could Turn US To "Radioactive Ash"

bkmoore Allow Russians to vote with their feet (878 comments)

For as long as Putin and his cronies are in power, the U.S. and the rest of the western world should offer any law-abiding Russian citizen who wants to leave an automatic green card, work permit, etc. We cannot realistically or morally change Russia from the outside. The most powerful weapon against fanaticism would be allowing regular law-abiding Russians to vote with their feet. We could always use some more scientists and engineers anyway...

about a month ago
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Elon Musk Addresses New Jersey's Tesla Store Ban

bkmoore Re:Bada boom bada bing (229 comments)

I did the exact same thing, the last time I bought a new car. (It's been a while) The only harassment was when the "manager" tried to hard sell me a "rust protective coating" and an "electrolytic rust protection" system for around $500 each. I figured I could get those things for less somewhere else. After about ten minutes, he gave up. Later on, did an internet search for both "options" and realized they were just scams to skim off an extra few dollars on top of the deal. The electrolytic system only "works" if the auto were submerged in salt water, something I don't plan on doing. It's not a boat. Glad I said no.

about a month ago
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70% of U.S. Government Spending Is Writing Checks To Individuals

bkmoore It's demographics... (676 comments)

and you can't repeal demographics. The last time the Republicans made this argument, they forgot that their most reliable voting block was retired white males over the age of 65.

about a month ago
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Ukraine May Have To Rearm With Nuclear Weapons Says Ukrainian MP

bkmoore Re:Putin - Rusputin (498 comments)

Russian President Vladimir Putin said that the commitments in the agreement are not relevant to Crimea because a 'coup' in Kiev has created 'a new state with which we have signed no binding agreements.'

Pay no attention to that signature on the dotted line.

It's almost as good as Putin's quote about "local security forces" buying Russian uniforms at any local military surplus store. So in order to protect law and order in my own country, I'm supposed to don the uniform of a foreign country? Now where did I put that old French Foreign Legion ensemble?

about a month ago
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Hackers Allege Mt. Gox Still Controls "Stolen" Bitcoins

bkmoore Re:Stills seems like it has to be an inside job (228 comments)

Financial system i have worked have never used floats. Its integers. Either just cents, or 10th of a cent. Or 2 integers for dollars and cents. There are rounding rules for this sort of thing.

Sounds like something out of Superman 3.

about a month ago
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The Brief Rise and Long Fall of Russia's Robot Tank

bkmoore Re:Did they say (79 comments)

"Remember, you must think in Russian..."

about a month ago

Submissions

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Space junk may have reached the tipping point

bkmoore bkmoore writes  |  more than 2 years ago

bkmoore (1910118) writes "A NASA report says that the amount of orbital debris and space junk may have reached its tipping point, making low earth orbit collisions with satellites and manned spacecraft more likely. BBC ran an article here.

The total amount of space debris has doubled in the last couple of years because of a Chinese test which destroyed a weather satellite in 2007 and a collision between two satellites in 2009. Space junk is posing an ever increasing risk to using low earth orbit. Does anyone here have any ideas of how to reduce the amount of space junk before we begin to loose GPS coverage, satellite communications, and manned space flight?"

Link to Original Source
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First Thunderbolt Reviews

bkmoore bkmoore writes  |  more than 2 years ago

bkmoore (1910118) writes "Other World Computing has just completed some of their first tests Thunderbolt via target disk mode. Target disk mode basically lets you use a Mac as an external HDD. For the review, they tested a Macbook Pro with an internal 6G SSD in target disk mode connected to a 27" iMac with the official Apple-approved cable. Surprisingly, the benchmark speed was 74 MB/s reads and 49 MB/s writes which is only about 4-6% of the full throughput of the Thunderbolt interface and not much of an improvement over FireWire 800 speeds. This was just one quick test, so more will be needed to get to the bottom of this bottleneck."
Link to Original Source
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Stuxnet Jointly Developed by US and Israelel

bkmoore bkmoore writes  |  more than 2 years ago

bkmoore (1910118) writes "The computer worm Stuxnet was according to this NY Times article jointly developed by US and Israeli intelligence services in order to sapatoge Iran's nuclear weapons programs. According to the NY Times article, which appeared on Saturday, Siemens in Germany unknowingly participated in developing the worm by assisting in developing a program to protect its industrial systems from attack with the US Department of Energy. In doing so, Siemens provided the Department of Energy with information on internal vulnerabilities which could be exploited. According to the article, the worm was tested in Isreal, “To check out the worm, you have to know the machines,” said an American expert on nuclear intelligence. “The reason the worm has been effective is that the Israelis tried it out.”"
Link to Original Source
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Original Apple I up for Auction in London

bkmoore bkmoore writes  |  more than 3 years ago

bkmoore (1910118) writes "If you thought Apple hardware was expensive, an Apple-1 is being auctioned by Christie's in London and is expected to go for around $160,000. And no, it doesn't support Adobe Flash. And I thought a MacBook Pro was expensive."
Link to Original Source

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