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Comments

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Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

jbeaupre Re:I'll give you six amendments: (1365 comments)

We vote on whether to have a no confidence vote. It's votes all the way down.

Or we could just have it automatically invoked in odd years.

yesterday
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Google: Teach Girls Coding, Get $2,500; Teach Boys, Get $0

jbeaupre Re:Why is that a problem? (673 comments)

It might come as a surprise to you, but the vast majority of technology is not electronic. Medicine, for example.

2 days ago
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Google: Teach Girls Coding, Get $2,500; Teach Boys, Get $0

jbeaupre Re:Why is that a problem? (673 comments)

Unless you visit your local shaman for healthcare, there is probably quite a bit of technology involved.

about a week ago
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Meet the Diehards Who Refuse To Move On From Windows XP

jbeaupre Re:Hardware requirements (641 comments)

I've got a DOS machine behind me that we use frequently. Need it to run special software that runs ISA boards. Couldn't be easier to maintain. My only fear is the motherboard dying and having to find a PC with ISA bus.

about two weeks ago
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Time Dilation Drug Could Let Heinous Criminals Serve 1,000 Year Sentences

jbeaupre Re:Doing it wrong... (914 comments)

Wow! You must really hate your spouse.

about a month ago
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Russia Bans Bitcoin

jbeaupre Positive effect of Beta (207 comments)

There is a serious benefit of Beta you are all ignoring. Productivity around the world is increasing due to people preferring to work instead of reading Slashdot.

about 2 months ago
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Windows 8.1 Passes Windows Vista In Market Share

jbeaupre Re:Sort of (249 comments)

You've got that right. If I had to use the Win 8 interface, I would downgrade in a heartbeat. Well, 40 minutes or whatever the time takes. But a simple utility was all it took to give me the UI I want. Thus, best of both worlds.

about 2 months ago
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Windows 8.1 Passes Windows Vista In Market Share

jbeaupre Re:Sort of (249 comments)

It's not a long list and most are pretty marginal. But performance and security are better. Task manager gives useful information. Not enough that I would bother upgrading to Win8. But Classic Shell makes it enough like Windows 7, I'm quite happy not downgrading on a new laptop that has a downgrade rights.

So if you're looking for a compelling valid list, yeah, there ain't one.

about 2 months ago
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Windows 8.1 Passes Windows Vista In Market Share

jbeaupre Sort of (249 comments)

I have no love for Win 8's UI. But Classic Shell to the rescue. My current system has the best of both worlds. Win 7 UI, Win 8 OS under the hood (which does have some nice improvements).

about 2 months ago
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US Supreme Court: Patent Holders Must Prove Infringment

jbeaupre Re:Yawn.... (143 comments)

No, they ruled the patent owner always has the burden of proof. It so happens, that's the defendant. It is the "always" that was the important part of the ruling.

Until fairly recently, if you licensed a patent, you gave up the right to contest it. That changed, but there was still some grey.

In this case, the Plaintiff had licensed for one product but wanted a judgement concerning a newer product. The Defendant asserted the burden of proof was on the Plaintiff since they had licensed it and now wanted to contest it. The Supreme Court disagreed: patent owner always has the burden of proof.

about 3 months ago
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Ball Lightning Caught On Video and Spectrograph

jbeaupre Re:Stories (120 comments)

I remember reading stories like that as a kid. Never thought I'd see it. Then we moved to a neighborhood where it was common. Yes, common.

When there were dry thunderstorms, ball lightening would form above a tree down the street. One or two at a time, but dozens during a storm. About 30 to 60 cm in dia, they would drift down from the tree, changing colors until they popped.

My brother and I would watch it from behind a screen door during at least 3 different storms I can think of. Wild to think it was common enough to recognize the sound and say "The ball lightning is back, let's go watch!"

The great irony was we were living in family housing at a large research university. The never knew what they had happening on their own campus. I figured they wouldn't believe some kid.

about 3 months ago
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Blowing Up a Pointless Job Interview

jbeaupre Re:What is the difference between a duck? (692 comments)

"Make the spoon the reference, then move the spoon."
"I think I am outside it, therefore I am outside it."
"A near miss"

about 3 months ago
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Doctors Say Food Stamp Cuts Could Cause Higher Healthcare Costs

jbeaupre Re:A question on food availability (1043 comments)

Thanks for posting the link. I took a look at the table you are referring to. There isn't a simple pattern. Farmers intrinsically have better food security and few could be said to be in poverty. Economically, they are small business owners and have to be reasonably successful or they don't stay farmers for very long. But they only make up less than 2% of the US population. Even in a rural state such as Wyoming, most people are not farmers or ranchers.

Rather, compare it to this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Income_quintiles and this: http://www.fns.usda.gov/snap/income-rules-income-limits

You'll see that states that have lower median income (more precisely, more people in the first quartile) have more people on SNAP. The cause for all the variation is due to a thousand different reasons.

One of the reasons so many people qualify for SNAP is that you don't have to be extremely poor to qualify. A family of 4 can earn $30,000 a year and qualify. Being poor in the US is not like being poor in 90% of the world.

I've had to make ends meet here on that kind of income, and it's not easy. My wife and kids qualified for a state food program for a while (bread, beans, milk). But even though they got the food, and it helped our budget, we would have survived without. Others might not.

Yes, we have federal, state, local, community, and even church programs that help people. These are independent of welfare benefits. Much of the fight you are seeing is due to there being so many programs. Many disagreements as to efficiency and efficacy. What is the right delivery mechanism, how much funding for each, who is in control, etc, etc.

Like many American things, it's a mess, we enjoy arguing about it, and things manage to work.

about 3 months ago
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Ford Exec: 'We Know Everyone Who Breaks the Law' Thanks To Our GPS In Your Car

jbeaupre Re:Having owned 2 Ford vehicles in the past... (599 comments)

Better strategy: Start to buy a Ford. Then ask them to disable the tracking as a condition of sale. When they say no (can't/won't), leave.

about 3 months ago
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CES: Laser Headlights Edge Closer To Real-World Highways

jbeaupre Re:Replaced by the Genesis (295 comments)

Is the Corvette Stingray close enough?

about 3 months ago

Submissions

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Clever desalinization

jbeaupre jbeaupre writes  |  more than 4 years ago

jbeaupre (752124) writes "The Economist reports on progress by a company called Saltworks on using saline gradients to do the heavy lifting of desalinization. In essence, Saltworks uses solar energy or waste heat to concentrate sea water. They then use the ionic gradient between the concentrated brine and 2 sea water streams to pull ions from from a 3rd sea water stream. It appears to work with entropy by trading the reduced entropy of the desalinated water against the increased entropy of "mixing" the brine and the other sea water streams. The article only discusses Na and Cl, but even just removing these ions is a step in the right direction.

Note to editor: I've linked to the Economist for 3 reasons: it has a better description of the process, a better diagram of the process, and is less likely to suffer from slashdotting."

Link to Original Source
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jbeaupre jbeaupre writes  |  more than 7 years ago

jbeaupre writes "A corollary to "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic" is that sometimes users have to resort to what I call "computer voodoo." You don't know why it works, you barely care how it works, but you find yourself doing the strangest things because it just seems to work. Like smacking a PC every 5 seconds for an hour to keep it from stalling on a hard drive reformat (with nary a problem after the reformat). Or figuring out the only way to get a PC partially fried by lightning to recognize an ethernet card after booting into windows is to start the computer by yanking the card out and shoving it back in, thereby starting the boot processes (power button, we don't need no stinkin' power button).

The question is: what wacky stuff have you done that makes no obvious sense, but just works?"

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