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Energy Utilities Trying To Stifle Growth of Solar Power

loshwomp Re:net metering != solar and 10% needs new physics (488 comments)

The utility can't give them back the power generated ten hours earlier, because there is no effective way to store power at utility scale.

As usual, there's a grain of truth in here, but, since realtime peak solar output is still not within TWO ORDERS OF MAGNITUDE of demand, this is still a bullshit argument.

about 3 months ago
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San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant Dismantling Will Cost $4.4 Billion, Take 20 Years

loshwomp Re:CLEAN, SAFE, (343 comments)

"Too cheap to meter" is the best example of a straw man argument I've ever heard. Absolutely no one believes nuclear energy is too cheap to meter.

about 5 months ago
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San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant Dismantling Will Cost $4.4 Billion, Take 20 Years

loshwomp It's borderline disingenuous... (343 comments)

...to put those big scary "$4.4 billion" numbers in there without context. It sounds like a lot of money (especially to people unfamiliar with the industry) but that number is the retail value of approximately 18 months of electrical generation for units 2 & 3 at San Onofre.

about 5 months ago
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Decommissioning Nuclear Plants Costing Far More Than Expected

loshwomp Re:First.... (288 comments)

$608 million decommissioning seem less ridiculous, this still seems much more expensive then it ought to be.

For perspective, that plant likely produced on the order of a quarter-million dollars worth of electricity EVERY HOUR, round the clock, for decades, so $608 million is not a very exciting figure, even if true.

This is actually great news. It means that decommissioning only costs the equivalent of 3 months worth of full-production output--a bargain.

about 8 months ago
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Decommissioning Nuclear Plants Costing Far More Than Expected

loshwomp Re:Nuclear power is too expensive (288 comments)

Rowe was constructed before there were widespread protests against nuclear power, and it was still too expensive.

If 1960s technology wasn't good enough, we may as well give up. That's what I always say.

about 8 months ago
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Why Portland Should Have Kept Its Water, Urine and All

loshwomp Re:They're just avoiding liability (332 comments)

All it would take is one kid getting sick

Urine is sterile. It literally can't make you sick at the concentrations in question. Case dismissed.

about 8 months ago
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New US Atomic Clock Goes Live

loshwomp posterity (127 comments)

it will lose or gain only one second every 300 million years

Can't they just leave a note to the future people to click it forward/back at the right time?

If the clock in question supports 9-digit years, they could even set an alarm...

about 9 months ago
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Smartphone Kill-Switch Could Save Consumers $2.6 Billion

loshwomp Re:No thanks (218 comments)

You could have a secret number on a scratch card that needs to be transmitted to the phone for it to "suicide".

If the premise is that I can't even avoid losing my phone, how am I, as its sole curator, expected to keep track of this number?

about 9 months ago
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Smartphone Kill-Switch Could Save Consumers $2.6 Billion

loshwomp I can save Americans $4.3B/year (218 comments)

Americans currently spend around $580 million replacing stolen phones each year and $4.8 billion paying for handset insurance.

At that factor of 8, folks, is why insurance is a bad investment. Americans could save $4.3B per year by not buying insurance with a poor ROI.

about 9 months ago
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California District Launches Country's First All-Electric School Bus

loshwomp Re: Cool (94 comments)

What do you imagine a replacement battery pack will cost for a school bus?

On the order of $0.10/Wh, by the time it matters. Modern Li cells are outlasting anyone's expectations in traction applications; they're not the weak link that you imply.

about 9 months ago
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California District Launches Country's First All-Electric School Bus

loshwomp Re: Add a range-extender engine, perhaps PV too (94 comments)

Unless you want to take kids on a field trip...

It doesn't make any sense to optimize for outlier trips like that, unless you have money to burn. Rather, you keep a few diesel buses around.

PV is better (economically, for efficiency, and for the grid) when it's stationary and grid-connected, and range extenders negate the benefits of the simple electric powertrain (bringing back ICE maintenance). A "range extended" EV embodies the complexity of both a full-power EV and a convention internal combustion powetrain.

about 9 months ago
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California District Launches Country's First All-Electric School Bus

loshwomp Re:Add a range-extender engine, perhaps PV too (94 comments)

PV could be installed, to also help with range

It doesn't need any "help with range". Fleet vehicles (like school buses) are already a near-ideal case for electrification; they follow well established routes and schedules. Range is either sufficient or not, and once sufficient, the marginal value of additional range is zero.

about 9 months ago
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Should Nuclear and Renewable Energy Supporters Stop Fighting?

loshwomp Re:Economic problems with hydrogen power (551 comments)

Basically you have to get charging time down below about 10 minutes for at least 200 miles of range.

That's only required to make electrics practical for the last 3-4% of transportation needs. Several standard deviations of our driving can be met with existing technology. Overnight charging at 6-12 kW is ideal because it's cheapest, and it happens while you do other things (like sleep), and it's when the grid is the cleanest.

about 10 months ago
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Previously-Unseen Photos of Challenger Disaster Appear Online

loshwomp Re:Report validates the "dead man walking" assessm (207 comments)

The report makes it pretty clear that saving the Columbia was about as realistic as saving the Titanic.

I'm glad you weren't in charge of Apollo 13. : ) Seriously, I think your interpretation is unusual (or maybe we're talking about different documents). The CAIB pretty clearly says the scenarious were plausible. Obviously risky, with no guarantee of success, but not impossible. I can't see how you got from that to "certain doom".

about a year ago
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Previously-Unseen Photos of Challenger Disaster Appear Online

loshwomp Re:PHB's strike again (207 comments)

The Columbia crew were dead men walking the moment the foam damaged the tiles. Columba was a wreck the moment the foam caused the damage. She would never reach earth's surface whole once she entered space.

This claim was solidly refuted in the official accident investigation report, which explores parallel scenarios--one for rescue, and another for improvised repair while on orbit.

The report is a fascinating read, by the way, and highly recommended. It manages to be satisfyingly technical without going over the head of a typical engineer or even lay person.

about a year ago
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I Became a Robot With Google Glass

loshwomp Hut. (134 comments)

Winking is great, but I want the hut hut.

about a year ago
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4K Is For Programmers

loshwomp Not really buying it. (520 comments)

More is better to a point, but productivity does not scale linearly with the number of lines of code displayed simultaneously.

I'm open minded, but unconvinced that it's especially better than two (or three) modest size displays. I'd be interested to hear from others who have tried both approaches (enormous display vs. a few smaller ones).

about a year ago
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Chinese Professor Builds Li-Fi System With Retail Parts

loshwomp Line of sight? (155 comments)

I assume the technology is for export, because line of sight in China should be good for, oh, about twenty feet or so.

about a year ago
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Stung By Scandal, South Korea Weighs Up Cost of Curbing Nuclear Power

loshwomp Re:Let's go BACKWARDS! (200 comments)

other energy sources are already cheaper [than nuclear]

That depends on how you account for the strip mining, fracking, CO2 and things like radiation (from coal plants) spewing into the atmosphere (which we all share). There aren't low carbon sources that are both cheaper than nuclear and suitable for base load.

safety is still somewhat lacking (accidents, like Fukushima, still happen)

And for perspective, coal plants emit more radiation when working normally, 24x7.

Safer and cheaper nuclear reactors should be possible.

Are possible, and much safer technology (than was in place at any of the high-profile incidents) exists today.

about a year ago

Submissions

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RealNetworks surrenders in RealDVD case

loshwomp loshwomp writes  |  more than 4 years ago

loshwomp (468955) writes "In a sad precedent, it looks like RealNetworks' DVD copying software has officially been declared illegal, because obviously it is a tool to aid copyright infringement and nothing more. Just like photocopiers, right?"
Link to Original Source
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Palm cancels Foleo

loshwomp loshwomp writes  |  more than 7 years ago

loshwomp (468955) writes "Evidently Palm has canceled its Foleo product just a few months after its introduction.

I guess it turns out that limiting your target market to people who already own an expensive Treo isn't a good idea. It's a shame, because the Foleo did have a few nice points — in particular, the instant-on/instant-off feature was a subtle but important convenience that's completely absent in many consumer electronics."

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