×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Comments

top

1 MW Cold Fusion Plant Supposedly To Come Online

cdn-programmer Hoax? Maybe, maybe not Nuclear fuel reprocessing (828 comments)

I am very skeptical. I have friends who have degrees in nuclear physics and this was my first choice for a career except when I saw the Fonda's in China Syndrome creating hysteria I decided to get into computer Science instead.

I know of no laws of physics that allow this gadget to work.

However this was also true when Einstein published his papers on special relativity. It took a generation of physicists to retire before that was proven. And as Richard Feynman said: There is plenty of room at the bottom as in we still have likely more to discover than we currently know.

Here is a reason the "customer" might not want to be known. Suppose it doesn't work. Politics says a major firm will walk away with egg on the face and no major firm wants this.

So we need to sit back and let these events unfold as they will. If it works then great. But it still does not solve a problem which has been solved in the 1960's through the 1990's This problem is the "spent fuel problem". There is enough energy sitting in the swimming pools on the current nuclear reactor sites to power our world for 1000's of years. Generation IV reactors like the molten salt reactor from Oak Ridge or the IFR which Argonne labs designed... either will burn that "spent fuel" and they can do this because the fuel is not "spent" at all. Its not waste. Its fuel.

These are tested designs and the physics is worked out and IMHO it is totally stupid to not be using them. It is totally fraudulent for the media and our governments to be totally misrepresenting the physics. Here is one example. I read in the papers that fuel reprocessing should not be allowed because:

The because is because of Plutonium. We can make bombs from Pu239. Well this is true. It is also true there is Pu239 in the "spent fuel". What is not told to the public is that there is also Pu240, Pu241 and Pu242 in that "spent fuel" and no one in their right mind would try to make a bomb with that stuff.

So what we should stop doing IMHO is enrichment because the main reason for this is to make bombs. Canada has the Candu and its proven and we don't need enrichment. We don't need to shut down NYSE:USU. I was a stock holder and made money. We need them to start doing reprocessing.

If we clean the crud from the "spent fuel" we can stuff it into Candu reactors and run them for 1000's of years. This is how we get rid of the nuclear "waste". At any time we can build the gen IV reactors.

But the thing is its still going to take a 1000's years to burn it and during this time there is going to be all the electricity our world needs flowing from these reactors.

If the e-Cat works then what? The nuclear industry dies and then who looks after the swimming pools.

In a way I hope the e-Cat doesn't work. I'd like to have one in my car and another heating my house but I think I would rather like to see a logical well thought out energy system which gets rid of the highly radioactive isotopes. This means fuel reprocessing and we shut down the enrichment industry because we already have too much.

more than 2 years ago
top

Does Italian Demo Show Cold Fusion, or Snake Oil?

cdn-programmer Re:Fueled by pre-loaded hydrogen (479 comments)

They are apparently using pretty high hydrogen pressure. If the metal can absorb this then there is quite a lot of potential energy in the pressure drop from the high pressure hydrogen source. Next it is reported that the reactor is about a liter in size.

Could the potential energy of the compressed hydrogen provide the energy?

If so then perhaps they extract all the hydrogen back out at low pressure and of course use an external system to re-compress it in which case perhaps they have a battery. Such a system would not use up any hydrogen to speak of. They might lose a little along the way of course.

What I can't figure out is how a number of very heavy weight physicists would miss something like this. All reports I've read is that there is a lot of head scratching going on.

more than 2 years ago
top

Researchers Develop Super Batteries From Aerogel

cdn-programmer Re:Crackpot ideas (182 comments)

this story has already rolled over the hill so to speak but hopefully you will follow up on your ideas. If you are not already doing this I think you should pursue a career in physics.

These are good ideas.

You wrote of a lighter than air structure. How about a vacuum window? Its been done. Aeogel is translucent and can carry the load. Glass mind you is very strong and it can be supported by little struts made out of say titanium and this is a commercial product. But aerogels might be a more interesting architectural product.

The problem is going to be manufacturing aerogel in quantity and in forming it. But as we know its mostly not there.

Contact me if you like... I'd like to work with you on this and you have my email. maybe we can form a hot air research lab.

more than 3 years ago
top

Mideast Turmoil and the Push For Clean Energy

cdn-programmer Projects not viable Re:Oil is too cheap (314 comments)

Unfortunately many alternative energy projects are not viable at any price. There is a difference between chemistry and physics and wishful thinking.

A case in point is bio-ethanol from starch. While it is not true that this is an energy loss, the issue is that the energy gain is not so great. Farmers probably can produce all the bio-fuel they need... for themselves. They cannot both feed millions of hungry urban mouths as well as millions of hungry urban gas tanks.

If we see oil prices run up over $150 per barrel I'm sure we will see a lot of finger pointing at politics and so forth. The truth is the problem is not a political problem ... it is a geological problem. We are reaching the limit of our ability at this time to mine hydrocarbons from the earth.

Perhaps a new technology will come forth. If so the judgment day will be pushed back a bit. We are still facing the inevitable. We are at or near peak oil. We need alternatives which are synthetics and we don't have them. The reason we don't have them is because we haven't built the plants.

The technology exists and has existed for decades. Part of the solution is coal->liquids with Natural Gas providing Hydrogen as a feed stock. I'll demonstrate why below. This is the Fischer Tropsch process. Look it up.

The reason we need a source of hydrogen is as follows. Coal has a hydrogen:carbon ratio of say about 0.6. It varies a lot. This means our coal feedstock might be say C(n)H(0.6n).

The liquid fuels we pour into our gas tanks are alkanes and they have a hydrogen:carbon ratio of about 2 and the chemical formula of C(n)H(2n+2). So for each carbon atom we mine from Coal or from Bitumin for that matter we need to find an atom of hydrogen. If we cannot find that hydrogen atom then we need to discard about 1/2 the carbon we mine. Well - we can burn some of it for energy... but people have their religions and they don't want that!

What they want is nirvana and it doesn't exist.

more than 3 years ago
top

Mideast Turmoil and the Push For Clean Energy

cdn-programmer Biobutanol (314 comments)

I rather doubt anyone is sitting on any old patents or will be any time soon. Sure BP and Dupont are working on biobutanol. They are probably working with Clostridium acetobutylicum. This was isolated before 1915 and was used industrially for decades.

What they are likely trying to do is mutate the beast so it will produce concentration of bio-fuel which are competitive with other sources which traditionally have been petroleum based.

I just don't know why we have all these conspiracy theories and why these theories seem to be promoted by the least informed.

more than 3 years ago
top

Smart Phone Gets Driver Out of a Speeding Ticket

cdn-programmer Racket (254 comments)

You participated in a racket and were ripped off and now you are proud? Its clowns like you who don't fight that encourage them to continue the racket.

I had my car towed across the street once... a construction crew wanted to dig up my side. I have no problem with that. What I didn't like was the ticket for parking in the no parking zone. The issue is the no parking zone showed up probably at 7 am in the morning after I left.

You better believe I fought them! racket. Ont he way home from winning (for the wrong reasons... racket remember) I met my neighbor who had also been parked. I asked him why he didn't get a ticket. He said he did and he paid it.

Its people like my neighbor who encourage this abuse by paying.

Rule of thumb. Fight ALL tickets. Never allow them to profit from the racket and we'll hopefully get the racket more under control.

more than 3 years ago
top

Activists Seek Repeal of Ban On Incandescent Bulbs

cdn-programmer CLf's wrok for me in my office... no where else (1049 comments)

I use three (3) 13 watt CLF's in my office and they work great. I leave them on 24x7 because I"m in and out a lot and at a total of 39 watts they use about a kilowatt hour per day which costs me about $3.00 per month and they do help heat my house - but not as much as incandescent would.

Since I leave them on 24x7 I find there is no lag for them to come on... which is one complaint people have. Next I get at least eight (8) years (70,000 hours) from them which is substantially more than what they are rated for. But this is what you get when you never turn them off.

I find the spectrum is excellent.

Everywhere else I use incandescent. I typically get over 5 years service from each of these bulbs as well because I'm not in those rooms very often so it takes a while to build up to 1000 hours.

I expect I'll horde enough incandescents to carry me through to 2020. If I have to replace the CLF's during this time its not an issue. I like the leds... but I think I'll wait for the price to come down.

Note I keep my computers on 24x7 as well and typically get more than a decade from these components. In fact my desktop machine has been running since 1998. Since it also runs linux I rarely have to reboot.

more than 3 years ago
top

Talking To Computers?

cdn-programmer It is easy to call the phone comapny (395 comments)

it is easy to call phone companies.... real easy. They usually have an investor relations department so just call them. They also usually have a legal department and usually they are quite good at answering the phone. Its just the rest of the whole companies typically which stink.

Last time I had a run in... I called the legal department and advised that if they didn't deal with me I would file and then they would have to deal with me. They dealt with me and I didn't need to file. But no one else in the comapny was that nice.

more than 3 years ago
top

Slashdot Launches Re-Design

cdn-programmer What a phucking mess! What incompetence! (2254 comments)

What a mess created by an incompetent group of clowns. They don't test their code and three (3) days after they screw everything up to the point where the whole system is unusable... its still not fixed!

This is incompetence.

These bright light bulbs were not even smart enough to keep the old templates running! Clowns is too nice for them. Who ever heard of backward compatibility eh?

If I were managing /. they would have their walking papers immediately. But maybe this is why its still broken.

more than 3 years ago
top

Slashdot Launches Re-Design

cdn-programmer unusable (2254 comments)

The new format is unusable.

I have classic enabled and its totally unusable.

more than 3 years ago
top

Greenland Ice Sheet Melts At Record Rate In 2010

cdn-programmer This site suggests melting ice (654 comments)

http://www.uwgb.edu/dutchs/PSEUDOSC/SeaIce.HTM

Why Doesn't Anyone Mention the Record Growth of Sea Ice Around Antarctica?

Typical of the commentaries on sea ice is this by Harold Ambler, published, of all places, in the Huffington Post, on January 3, 2009:

        P.S. One of the last, desperate canards proposed by climate alarmists is that of the polar ice caps. Look at the "terrible," "unprecedented" melting in the Arctic in the summer of 2007...

So, to answer Ambler's final question:

        Why, I ask, has Mr. Gore not chosen to mention the record growth of sea ice around Antarctica? If the record melting in the Arctic is significant, then the record sea ice growth around Antarctica is, too, I say. If one is insignificant, then the other one is, too.

The answer is simple. The Arctic decrease is statistically significant, and the Antarctic increase is not. This is Stats 101. Ambler is flat out wrong. Not all trends are equally statistically significant.

What the last two (2) maps don't indicate is if warmer ocean temperatures increase precipitation inland.

http://www.sciencebits.com/CO2orSolar

I suggest if anyone wants to dig into this check Sciencebits. More specifically look here:

http://www.sciencebits.com/CosmicRaysClimate
http://www.sciencebits.com/CosmicRaysClimate#ShavivVeizer

Since we are still waiting for a very anemic solar cycle#24 to build up sunspots, I think perhaps we should wait till past 2015 because it seems the great solar science experiment in the sky is already underway.

  http://solarcycle24.com/sunspots.htm
http://sc25.com/

more than 3 years ago
top

Greenland Ice Sheet Melts At Record Rate In 2010

cdn-programmer Climate change to continue to year 3000 (654 comments)

http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2011-01/uoc-cct010611.php

Yuppie! They've got the models to prove it:

Climate change to continue to year 3000 in best case scenarios

The study, to be published in the Jan. 9 Advanced Online Publication of the journal Nature Geoscience, is the first full climate model simulation to make predictions out to 1000 years from now. It is based on best-case, 'zero-emissions' scenarios constructed by a team of researchers from the Canadian Centre for Climate Modelling and Analysis (an Environment Canada research lab at the University of Victoria) and the University of Calgary.

The Northern Hemisphere fares better than the south in the computer simulations, with patterns of climate change reversing within the 1000-year time frame in places like Canada.

That's a pretty good model.

Who cares about 30 years of data when they can forecast out 1000 years!

Looks to me that after we drown because of rising sea levels then the sea level will go back down. Darn - and I want some ocean front property. Maybe this will drive the price down. Maybe it will drive the price up. Maybe can we use the model on the stock market? I hate to admit that probably some of my tax money funded this.

more than 3 years ago
top

Biotech Company Making Fossil Fuels With a 'Library' of Bacteria

cdn-programmer Ya right! Give me a break! (386 comments)

Lets see. There are 4046.8726 square meters in an acre.

Since we know the MAXIMUM solar energy is about 1 kilowatt per square meter and the ratio of the surface area of a disc verses a sphere is 1:4 we get 250 watts per square meter average over a day. We also have an idea of how many hours in a year which most would agree is 24*365 = 8760

So at MOST the energy falling on an acre is 4046 * 250 * 8760 (watt.hours) = 8,860,740 kilowatt.hours (note the units conversion from watt.hours to kilowatt.hours).

Gasoline has about 34.8 MJ per liter. There are 3.78 liters/ US.gallon so 34.8 * 3.78 / 3600 / 1000 = 36.54 kilowatt.hours per us.gallon.

But they claim they can get 10,000 us.gallons of gas per acre so this is 36.54E5 = 3,654,000 kilowatt.hours of product with an energy input of 8,860,740 kilowatt.hours max. This is better than 41%.

BUT! For about 1/2 the year it might be below freezing!

Now does anyone want to calculate the total land area on earth and translate this into barrels of oil equivalent per year? The world currently uses about 86 million barrels per day.

more than 3 years ago
top

Internet Usage Catches Up With Television In US

cdn-programmer tv is irrelavent (119 comments)

TV is irrelevant. It is a complete waste of time. I already know enough about soap and female deodorant products to last me a lifetime.

They blew it. This is a one way street. There It is really nice not having a cable bill!

more than 3 years ago
top

NASA Finds New Life (This Afternoon)

cdn-programmer Medium Rare (405 comments)

I'll have the arsenic steak please. Medium rare with a backed potato and sour cream and chives.

more than 3 years ago
top

Sahara Solar To Power Half the World By 2050

cdn-programmer Nobody will find me investing in this! (363 comments)

Nobody will find me investing with this! What sort of linear logic goes from dessert -> sand -> silicon -> gobs of free power? Would it be this comes from people who forget the technology required to turn sand into solar panels?

They say "pure silicon" but what do "they" mean by pure? If they talked about setting up a glass factory and making parabolic mirrors I might have more faith. But I still will not invest.

more than 3 years ago
top

Microsoft Charging Royalties For Linux

cdn-programmer Re:Microsoft has software patents, wants licenses. (286 comments)

when it comes to law please remember the British made it illegal for India to harvest salt from the Sea. Bolivia privatized the public water system and I think it was Bechel who bought it and were charging poor people as much as 1/4 of their income. They were not even allowed to catch rainfall. The British ran drugs into China.

Law is not about justice. Its about power and money.

more than 3 years ago
top

Proving 0.999... Is Equal To 1

cdn-programmer Re:The actual reason (correct) (1260 comments)

yes, your explanation is correct. It is the same point in the set of real numbers and just has two (2) or more different notations. One can also use different bases.

more than 3 years ago
top

Proving 0.999... Is Equal To 1

cdn-programmer I proved this decades ago (1260 comments)

On a dare I proved this decades ago. Its really easy and took less than 10 minutes.

The issue is really one of notation. 1E0 also equals 1. It is not that 0.99999... is close to 1.0 It is actually equal to 1.0 and just another way to write 1.0.

Why is this is slashdot?

more than 3 years ago
top

FCC Fights To Maintain Indecency Policy

cdn-programmer Re:Broadcast model is dead! (602 comments)

I didn't shut it off for me. Somewhere some little kid may be up with the flu while mommy and daddy are sleeping and kids will turn the TV on looking for something to watch while they lay down on the couch. Little kids flip channels too.

Our broadcasters have to realize they have some moral responsibility and if they can't get common sense into their thick greedy skulls then they need to realize some people like me won't do business with them.

They say reputation is hard to earn and easy to lose.

When my kids were little I didn't bother trying to censor the net. When they are too little they really aren't interested so they won't go looking for it (usually). When they are older and are interested then they can't be stopped. The thing about the net is they need to (usually) actually look. With TV they can just flip channels which is something they grew up with.

That being said, I would prefer if our search engines had a kiddie channel. I'm sure Google can organize something like this.

What I would really like to see is an access card of some sort. I know passwords can do the same thing but people forget to log out. As I see it there is a problem and people who bitch do have a very legitimate bitch . Responsibility to limit access needs to rest with those who make this garbage available. It should not be the reponsibility of the parents and grandparents, brothers and sisters, aunts and uncles and friends of those who have children.

However since Bell doesn't see it my way I accepted the responsibility they shirk and I canceled their service. Problem solved.

Also - I have no complaint if someone wants to subscribe to a porn channel. This is unless the kid is 10 years old! I just don't want to see the porn on channels ordinarily sold to families and as I see it - this includes the standard movie package I subscribed to several years ago which at that time didn't have porn and which were not sold as porn channels.

more than 3 years ago

Submissions

top

How to deal with spam

cdn-programmer cdn-programmer writes  |  more than 3 years ago

cdn-programmer writes "Pull the plug.

I intend to bill $1.00 per month per spammer. I will see my Telco in court within 90 days. This is my letter to Telus:

        I am checking the implied contracts with your company. I do not do direct
  business because of the way your company treated me in the past. Over the last
  two days I have received more than 4500 spams. I'm sure some of these originate on your system. On the basis of an implied contract I will plan on billing your company for the spam. The charge will be $1.00 per spammer per month. I will
  track the IP addresses and provide detailed accounting. Your options are: 1)
  Your company pays the bill. 2) Your company pulls the plug on your spammers. 3) Your company pulls my plug but that will end up in court since I already have fully paid for service plans in place. 4) Your company argues with my legal
  team that your spammers have a right to send this crap my way. Govern yourselves accordingly"
top

Please don't fondle the fruit

cdn-programmer cdn-programmer writes  |  about 5 years ago

cdn-programmer writes "Recently I wandered through the fruit and vegetable section of my favorite grocery store. On display were all sorts of fresh fruit and vegetables. Many were not packaged. I watched as a number of customers fondled the food and then put it back on the shelf for someone else to buy. It struck me that apparently I'm suppose to buy the food other shoppers have fondled and rejected. I wonder how many different customers have fondled the food I'm expected to buy. I wonder where they had their hands since they were last washed. It also struck me that the common fruit and vegetable displays are designed to encourage people to fondle the food which others are then expected to buy. I would like to ask slashdot how stores might design displays and what marketing techniques might be used so that the food we buy is not fondled as much as it is at present. I will note that most people would object if their server in their favorite restaurant were to fondle their food as it sits on their plate. Yet these same people seem to think it is perfectly fine to go to their favorite grocery store and fondle the food others are expected to buy."
top

Security leak or professional incompetance?

cdn-programmer cdn-programmer writes  |  more than 6 years ago

cdn-programmer writes "Yesterday I purchased a DLT7000 drive in a Pawn Shop. A piece of media was in the drive. They have a 48 hour return if it doesn't work policy... so I immediately hooked it to my Linux desktop and tried to read the tape that came with it to see if (a) there is something on it that indicates who it came from in case it was stolen (the drive was really cheap — cheaper than the media) and (b) to see if the drive actually works.

Well — it does work. The 1st file was an HTML file — basically the backup of a website. I have now called the police to see if the organisation behind the website is missing a tape drive and I have calls into the organisation as well.

But something seemed funny. There seemed to be other stuff that said organisation would not have. So I ran strings on the file — huge — and there are many files on the tape and now I see a pattern.

This appears to be a backup tape from an accountant and the tape is full of her client's tax returns and other private data. It looks like her son was affiliated with the organisation and that the lady in question did the tax returns for the organisation. I now know who the person is. I have her phone number. Thing is I called her asking for her son because I thought I should get a hold of the organisation in charge of the website. Now I find she lives about 3-4 blocks from here and this tape drive must have been her's. What a dork she was on the phone! I don't enjoy rudeness and being hung up on when I'm trying to be honest and a nice guy and maybe do someone a favor.

What should I do? Erase the tape and forget it or call the local accountants regulatory body and advise them that one of their accountant members has so little concern for her client's private tax data that she totes her backup system containing all their tax data down to a pawn shop and sells it?

What do slashdot people advise? Blow the whistle or forget it?

Oh — strings furnished me a list of many of her clients complete with names, addresses, telephone numbers and their Social Security numbers too. I guess I could call them and ask them what they think about their accountant publishing their tax data via a pawn shop. How do I know how many pieces of media she had?

Note: this is NOT the first time confidential data has found its way into my hands. Several years ago I was hired to recover a backup tape. After finding the proper version of the backup program and after reading the tape I found the tape was full of a company's source code. So I called the company. They were shocked.

The tape was part of the disclosures for a discovery for a Court of Queen's Bench trail. It has been disclosed under seal. They and their lawyers definately wanted to meet with me and by then I had fired the tape off to my lawyer's offices. I found out the opposing counsel handed the tape to his client and the client sent it down to one of the devloper's competitors and the competitor handed it to one of their employees who chucked it into her back pack and peddled it across town and handed it to me to read.

So much for a legal undertaking of non-disclosure of confidential source code! That code put ME in a conflict of interest situation. In the end I was thanked by the developer's. The opposing counsel didn't get the tape back. I never got paid for the work I did because I couldn't give the tape back to the people who hired me. Of course I was out of pocket for having purchased about 3 versions of some backup software that I had no use for other than to read the tape I was handed.

How to read the DLT7000 tape?

mt -f /dev/st1 setblk 0
dd if=/dev/nst1 of=file1 bs=1024k count=
strings file1 | less

I don't think this contravenes any DMCA legislation and besides I bought the tape and I own it so it is perfectly legal for me to look on a tape I own. How is this any different than buying an unlabeled CD and playing it to see if it contains some music you like? Besides which I have not actually looked at these people's tax returns and strings won't show me anything more confidential than their names, addresses and social security and phone numbers. To actually recover the data I'd have to install the backup software and read it on my NT machine.

BTW — there is a bug in dd and when you do a setblk 0 dd then tries to allocate a buffer of zero (0) bytes and barfs. Its too bad we can't improve the code base... I have reported this before."
top

cdn-programmer cdn-programmer writes  |  more than 6 years ago

cdn-programmer writes "The main screen shows me logged in. Some stories show me logged in. Other stories show me logged out. If I try to log in all that happens is (1) it doesn't work or (2) it takes me back to the main screen where I am logged in. An example is the story about US Gasoline Prices Spur Telework I tried to post a comment. I see: Login for "cdn-programmer" has failed. Please try again. Submit"

Journals

cdn-programmer has no journal entries.

Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...