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Slashdot Asks: How Prepared Are You For an Earthquake?

drgould Re:Most are ill-prepared (191 comments)

No. No, I'm not.

My bad, but I think it was a reasonable assumption.

If you don't mind me asking, how many cells were in the flashlight?

I assume two, but there I go jumping to conclusions again.

about 3 months ago
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Slashdot Asks: How Prepared Are You For an Earthquake?

drgould Re:Things (191 comments)

Electronics? Really? Those are just things. They can be replaced.

There's electronics and there's electronics.

Sure you don't care about your computer, TV, DVD player, etc, etc, but you might want to add a crank/solar AM/FM radio, flashlight, spare cell phone and maybe even a battery-operated TV to your stash.

Extra points for a CB or Ham radio.

about 3 months ago
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Slashdot Asks: How Prepared Are You For an Earthquake?

drgould Re:Most are ill-prepared (191 comments)

Depends on whether your flashlights are compatible with lithiums. For example, they will cook a maglight with incandescent bulbs. The bulbs burn out within 10 minutes.

You're thinking of Lithium-Ion batteries which are nominally 3.6V.

Energizer Lithium batteries are 1.5V and are compatible with most electronics that take AA or AAA Alkaline batteries.

about 3 months ago
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Obama Administration Says the World's Servers Are Ours

drgould Re: Maybe, maybe not. (749 comments)

this kind of ruling encourages multinationals to never set up business in the USA.

I'm not sure it's quite that bad.

IANAL, but I can imagine a foreign corporation setting up a wholly-owned subsidiary in the USA.

Of course US operations would be subject to legal warrants and subpoenas, but all foreign operations should be outside the reach of US legal authority.

If a warrant is served for data from the foreign operations... sorry, the US subsidiary doesn't have access to it. It doesn't matter how many people they throw in jail for contempt.

But what do I know.

about 4 months ago
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Senator Bernie Sanders Asks NSA If Agency Is Spying On Congress

drgould Re:Well, uh... (363 comments)

What IS going on:

we are spying on all members of Congress and everyone else.

And it's all legal, according to their interpretation of the law.

You forgot that part.

about a year ago
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Google Acquires Boston Dynamics

drgould Re:An acquisition I did not expect (104 comments)

it makes me more than a little curious what Google plans to do with their new toys.

Well, they already have autonomous vehicles and if they can add autonomy to "Atlas", then they can replace FedEx and UPS package delivery.

Although that's something I'd expect Amazon to experiment with.

about a year ago
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U.S. 5X Battery Research Sets Three Paths For Replacing Lithium

drgould Re:Why not? (172 comments)

Why not produce a liquid electrolyte (charged) and sell it as we do today with gasoline?

If I understand your question correctly, the answer is a fuel-cell.

And yes, they're working on it.

1 year,9 days
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NASA's Robonaut Gets Its Legs; Could a Moonwalk Be In Its Future?

drgould Is "robonaut" the best choice? (63 comments)

That is, if you're going to send a remotely guided robot to the moon, is a bipedal walker the best choice?

As opposed to a conventional wheeled or even a quadrupedal rover.

I assume a bipedal walker is going to need sophisticated stability control (computational and mechanical) for every step it takes over rough terrain that a simple wheeled vehicle can just roll over.

1 year,15 days
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Autonomous Dump Trucks Are Coming To Canada's Oil Sands

drgould Re:Will they run Windows? (165 comments)

I'm looking forward to the remake of "Christine" with a truck the size of a house in the title role.

More like a remake of Killdozer.

1 year,25 days
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Snowden Shortlisted For Europe's Top Human Rights Award

drgould Choices (273 comments)

If I were Snowden, I think I'd prefer to have a guarantee of sanctuary somewhere in Europe than a piece of paper.

But that's just me.

about a year ago
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Ask Slashdot: Video Streaming For the Elderly?

drgould Re:Get them a used Wii (165 comments)

Does it have built in storage? If so, how much?

No, but it does have one USB port so you can plug in a USB harddrive or thumbdrive. I understand that some people have connected up to 1TB drives to their S3100.

I have the BDP-S390, which is the previous model, and usually copy videos to a thumbdrive for viewing.

It's also DLNA compatible so you can use any DLNA server on your network to stream pictures, music or videos. Sony has a free DLNA server called HomeStream, which is based on the popular Serviio DLNA server.

One problem is that Sony players are not compatible with all combinations of video file and codec formats. Most of my videos play fine on my S390, a few don't. I don't care enough to figure out why.

about a year ago
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Ask Slashdot: Video Streaming For the Elderly?

drgould Re:Get them a used Wii (165 comments)

I think a PS3 slim is a better console alternative if you want Netflix.

Sony also makes some Blu-Ray players like the BDP-S3100 which is cheaper than a used PS3, but plays Blu-Ray discs (obviously) and streams Netflix (along with all the other on-line streaming services that PS3 handles).

about a year ago
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Opposition Mounts To Oracle's Attempt To Copyright Java APIs

drgould Re:Groklaw's Gas Pedal analogy (187 comments)

Let's not "dumb down" the issue by making analogies that don't really apply.

Analogies are like scabs. If you pick at them, they bleed.

about a year and a half ago
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Opposition Mounts To Oracle's Attempt To Copyright Java APIs

drgould Re:Be careful where you tread (187 comments)

If Java API's are copyrightable, does this mean that Oracle has a copyright interest in every program ever written that uses those APIs?

Oracle's purpose in claiming the copyright on the Java API is not to claim derivative copyright interest on programs written in Java. Well, maybe later.

Oracle's purpose is to collect license fees from anyone who uses the Java APIs.

And since Android uses the Java APIs, that includes Google and all Android developers.

about a year and a half ago
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FBI Releases Boston Bombing Suspect Images/Videos

drgould Re:False flag (416 comments)

Where are the pictures of them dropping and leaving the backpacks in the exact spots the explosions took place?

They mentioned that on one newscast. They suggested that the FBI didn't want potental witnesses to get confused by what they saw personally and what they saw on TV.

Imagine at trial months from now, the defense attorney cross examining a witness, "Now Mr/Ms So-and-so, are you certain you personally saw my client place his backpack at the scene of the explosion or are you just remembering the video the FBI distributed after the incident?"

about a year and a half ago
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Ask Slashdot: Best 3-D Design Software?

drgould 123D Design from Autodesk (218 comments)

123D Design from Autodesk is free and compatible with 3D printers.

Here's a guy who used it to replace a critical piece of a mounting bracket for his TomTom GPS.

The video gives you some insight into the workflow from design to 3D printing.

about a year and a half ago
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Richard Stallman's Solution To 'Too Big To Fail'

drgould Re:Sherman Act (649 comments)

However your statement that "The greatest enemy to capitalism are the capitalists... If you want to keep capitalism healthy simply make sure there are plenty of capitalists" appears to contain a contradiction. Were you being sardonic?

I think his point is that capitalists will always work to restrict competitors from entering the market, often by encouraging more government regulations to increase barriers to market entry. Hence, "the greatest enemy to capitalism are capitalists.".

Therefore the perhaps not obvious way to reduce this tendency is by encouraging more capitalists, thereby reducing the power of individual capitalists.

about 2 years ago
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Is Safe, Green Thorium Power Finally Ready For Prime Time?

drgould Re:nuclear "green" energy (258 comments)

Did you notice the scale of that spill? Not even 2 miles long. Not fun, but living beneath a dam of any kind and is certainly a planned activity. Evacuating 100 sq miles is not.

And yet even less than 2 miles long the spill caused significantly more damage than TMI, the worst disaster at a commercial nuclear plant in the US.

about 2 years ago

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