The Great Lightbulb Conspiracy
A regular cause of early incandescent bulb death is vibration. I wonder if there is a way that opening/shutting your door or walking on your porch vibrates the light socket? I had the same kind of issue in my basement, walking in the kitchen would vibrate the basement ceiling, and if the lights were on in the basement one might burn out.
I replaced them with CFLs and everything has been good. I put the same kind of CFLs in my garage. The starters all died on them after about 6 months, presumably from either humidity (I live in the US midwest) or maybe it was the cold? Dunno.
Point of the post is that lifetime numbers given by the manufacturer are probably for the "best case" condition for the bulb to live in. I imagine in FL where they get far more lightning than in the US that LED bulbs might have a shorter life.
Ask Slashdot: Finding a Job After Completing Computer Science Ph.D?
I've worked with PhDs in a hands-on environment as well (apps/drivers and low-level embedded stuff). Several of them were great, and at least one sucked enough to be let go. One of them (Physics PhD, not Comp Sci) was one of the most talented low-level embedded SW Eng's I've worked with. Sweeping generalizations...
Grand Ayatollah Says High Speed Internet Is "Against Moral Standards"
You've got a point there. The summary article on Wikipedia has 21 nations listed as having some kind of Arab spring activity, but only 3 with good-ish outcomes.
Next way-out-there question: The US is pretty tired of middle east involvements right now...but if there was a significant revolt in Iran, would the US jump in? Fund rebels? Deliver arms?
Grand Ayatollah Says High Speed Internet Is "Against Moral Standards"
Imagine if 3G (and "4G") was found to somehow be illegal in the US - I think there'd be a revolt. A good enough chunk of the nation expects to get FB updates and cat vids on demand anywhere they go. Maybe Iran is the same? It seems backwards, but I think this is the kind of thing that gets the average person to actually care about something. No cat vids = Arab spring in Iran? Maybe?
U.S. Waived Laws To Keep F-35 On Track With China-made Parts
Given that the aircraft contains hundreds of thousands of parts, I'd be willing to bet more than just a few "China" parts have slipped in. It's one thing if it's some $10,000 part...but for a handful of $2 magnets (which if we did go to war with China could be found in stockrooms all across the US) who cares. Don't get me wrong - this should be avoided. It happened as an oversight and a waiver was granted. Thats the kind of thing waivers are for. We don't need Uncle Sam spending $100K to replace $2 magnets.
Anonymous Member Sentenced For Joining DDoS Attack For One Minute
and the MPAA issues a successful DMCA takedown (automated) for something they do not own the rights to....nothing happens.
Neil deGrasse Tyson Says Private Business Will Not Open the Space Frontier
I think we need to read between the lines. I bet Tyson realizes Musk is the kind of guy who can't lose a bet and is daring him. Obviously this is speculation and I could be wrong, but I think Tyson is playing chicken with Musk - except Tyson wants to lose.
Tyson is a brilliant guy. He's also all about getting people interested in the cosmos, and getting funding for the required research etc.
Musk is also a brilliant guy, and we all know he's a daredevil. Look at his businesses (which are quite successful), high performance electric cars and rocketry. He was also a founder of Paypal back when doing that kind of thing wasn't a "sure bet". Musk is also all about the technology, and he's an innovator.
Congress Takes Up Online Sales Tax
So is this tax a federal sales tax, or is it going to allow the states to collect sales tax? From the article (which was vague) it makes it sound like it's going to allow states to collect and is to benefit states / local economies. That sounds great (not really), but...
...how long until I'm paying taxes to two (or more!) states for a purchase online? (Tax to my state and tax to the state where the merchant is)
I can't find the bills online (spent 5 minutes on senate.gov), so I can't see if the bill provides some direction on which state gets to collect the tax. If someone finds the bills it would be great to provide a link.
Missile Defense's Real Enemy: Math
The AEGIS interceptors are not as sophisticated as you'd think. All of the directing comes from the ship's powerful radar. The ship tracks the inbound missile, and when the timing is right launches an interceptor (the Navy calls them "Standard Missiles" or SMs). The missile has no idea where it's going or what it's supposed to hit, in fact it doesn't even know where IT is. It's only real link to the world is it's ability to listen to the ship's powerful radar. The same radar that detected the threat can also see the SM. It basically hits the SM with radar in a special way that tells the SM "go up", "go down", "turn this much" etc. and guides it into the target. At the very end of the flight there is a terminal phase that is a bit different, but it's still the radar doing the heavy lifting, not the missile.
Most of this is called out in more detail in the wikipedia page for Aegis Combat System.
Andrew Auernheimer Case Uncomfortably Similar To Aaron Swartz Case
For the love of all that is holy, mod this up. I've been thinking along these lines for a while, but this puts it in words much better than I have/could.
NewEgg: Installing Linux Breaks Laptop
I could possibly understand poorly written firmware (or some other "embedded software") damaging the hardware. If something at the driver level is capable of damaging the hardware, you need to fire your EE (and all reviewers and quality folks that signed off on the design). I don't remember any OS install updating device firmware.
Which leaves me thinking - is the HW in modern PCs that haphazard or is newegg (and others) trying to conserve a profit margin? I hope it's the latter.
Judge to Oracle: A High Schooler Could Write rangeCheck
ummm...I wouldn't submit this for peer review just yet.
Overheated Voting Machine Cast Its Own Votes
Hey - get off slashdot and get back to work!! :)
Good point though...
Swiss Solar Powered Catamaran Finishes 'Round the World Tour
Technically, wind power is solar power. I agree, non-news.
Lack of Vaccination Sends Babies In Oregon To the Hospital
Thanks for bringing up this point, it's something that is often overlooked. I think in some cases the rate at which the vaccine doesn't work can be >10% (often it has to do with how the vaccine is administered and less to do with it no working on a chemical/biological level - but it doesn't matter for my point).
So there is effectively some significant number of kids that are un-vaccinated, but not by choice. The only way to prevent THEM from getting the illness is to ensure that as many other kids as possible are vaccinated to minimize exposure and reduce the chance of spreading.
To put it in other terms, there is a real possibility that the only reason you haven't gotten some debilitating (yet preventable through vaccines) disease isn't because you were vaccinated as a child, but instead because you've actually never really been exposed to it because everyone else is vaccinated.
So even for the parents of the vaccinated kids, it's important to encourage all the other parents to vaccinate, because there is some real chance your kid isn't as fully covered as you think!
F-18 Fighter Jet Crashes Into Virginia Apartment Complex
Just for the record, there's a fair amount of software and electronics onboard those things as well. The EEs and Comp E's want our chance to be responsible for the engine failure!
Santorum Calls Democrats 'Anti-Science'
Why do I hear this crap from catholics all the time? They must teach it at seminary or something. Always referencing that same tired blog i might add. Depending on your def'n of science, the origins of the scientific method start with either the Greeks or the Arabs. Additionally, essentially the same methods were co-discovered by both the Asians and in India. Yes, some catholic priests moved humankind forward on a few topics, but it's not as if without them those areas would have languished long (see Darwin/Wallace for example). Given the damage the church caused in astronomy, I find it hard to believe the Catholic church has even had a net positive impact on science much less believe the church is responsible for it.
Best Language For Experimental GUI Demo Projects?
I don't always write GUIs, but when I do, I prefer wx.
But in all seriousness - I hate writing GUIs. I write embedded C for a living and am lost when it comes to the differences between window manager(s) on Linux or Windows or whatever. When I need to whip something up quick (and it's not embedded, and we're not going to sell it) sometimes I switch over to Python, and if that quick thing needs a GUI, wxPython (the port of wxWidgets from C to python) is something you can tack on there with minimum hassle. If you need a portion to be fast for your math calcs or whatever you can write that part in C.
There's a boatload of tutorials via google (and youTube).
Ask Slashdot: How To Inform a Non-Techie About Proposed Copyright Laws
..and randomly "blacklist" Google, FB, Yahoo, YouTube, etc. on it with some notice of copyright infringement.
Fake IPad 2s Made of Clay Sold At Canadian Stores
1. Get 10 people together, everyone buy an iPad on the same day (maybe over 2 days).
2. Take the iPads home, remove iPads, replace with clay.
3. Return the iPads claiming you found clay in the box when you bought it.
4. Receive new iPads, sell on eBay.
Same net effect, 10 iPads. But this way you don't have to try and reseal the box in a convincing way, and you don't have to get the store clerk to take back a box of clay.
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