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Firefox Signs Five-Year Deal With Yahoo, Drops Google as Default Search Engine

mpoulton Murder-suicide? (382 comments)

So if two listing, burning ships strap themselves together, do they float better? Or do they just sink faster? It seems to me that if your browser market-share is dropping and you're losing relevance, the best move is probably not to attach yourself to a search engine whose market share and relevance were lost years ago.

3 days ago
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New Atomic Clock Reaches the Boundaries of Timekeeping

mpoulton Re: Old saying (249 comments)

Because it would be meaningless to "compensate" for the time difference between clocks moving and accelerating differently. Time literally moves at different rates in different reference frames. The clocks are correct; the problem is that the concept of similtaneity is fundamentally flawed.

about three weeks ago
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The Physics of Why Cold Fusion Isn't Real

mpoulton Re:Things once thought impossible... (350 comments)

1. Powered Flight 2. Bending Light 3. Traveling Greater than 300mph 4. Transparent Aluminum 5. Artificial Diamonds

All of these "Feats" of human ingenuity were once thought to be impossible by the physics standards of the day.

Physics and our understanding of it, continues to evolve every moment we live.

To say the words "It Cannot Be Done" after seeing all we have done already... Is kind of foolish.

We will learn how to accomplish this feat, or one very similar that accomplishes the same goal, Eventually...

That, is the power of Consciousness My Friends.

All hail the thinking, reasoning, Problem Solving, Human Consciousness!

Hold up there, turbo. Transparent aluminum? Surely you're not serious. And don't post a link to something about aluminum oxide or other ceramics.

about a month ago
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NASA's JPL Develops Multi-Metal 3D Printing Process

mpoulton Re:Then mix it with 10% Quicksilver (32 comments)

Mercury alloys don't tend to be very good for much of anything, except where the process of amalgamation is important - and that's not here.

about 4 months ago
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One Trillion Bq Released By Nuclear Debris Removal At Fukushima So Far

mpoulton ... and that's not much. (190 comments)

A trillion Bq is a fairly small number, especially when spread over a large area. That's pretty insignificant.

about 4 months ago
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Slashdot Asks: Do You Want a Smart Watch?

mpoulton "Smart earrings" or "smart necklaces" too? (381 comments)

No, I do not want a "smart watch" any more than I want any other "smart" jewelry. Purely functional timepieces are obsolete. If all you want is to know the time, your phone already solves that problem for you - hence the decrease in percentage of people wearing watches. A modern wristwatch is a piece of jewelry where its functionality (and the means of achieving it) are part of the beauty. "Smart watches" have enhanced functionality, but universally at the expense of beauty. The aesthetics are terrible, thus defeating the primary purpose of a watch these days.

about 4 months ago
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What To Do If Police Try To Search Your Phone Without a Warrant

mpoulton Re:The actual Guides (286 comments)

Since the summary links you to a stupid news article and not the guides themselves, here is the ACLU Guide and EFF Guides here.

The EFF guide you linked has not been updated yet to reflect the Riley decision. Some of those answers need to be changed because they are incorrect now. The ACLU "Know Your Rights" manual does not appear to have been updated either, but it simply doesn't address the issue of cell phone searches incident to arrest at all.

about 5 months ago
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Fixing China's Greenhouse Gas Emissions For Them

mpoulton Who is being taxed, exactly? (322 comments)

Soooooo.... we tax ourselves to make China change? Because that's what's being proposed. Tariffs are passed straight through to the buyers of the products. We we're raising prices on imported goods, to change the behavior of the manufacturers, who will still take in the same revenue. As long as domestic manufacturing remains more expensive than the imports plus tariffs, we will still be buying the imported goods, just paying more for them and funneling the extra money back to the federal government.

about 5 months ago
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Happy 95th Anniversary, Relativity

mpoulton Simultaneity is in the eye of the beholder. (120 comments)

95 years of confusing the heck out of second-semester physics students! You didn't think you signed up for a calculus-based philosophy class with numerical answers to epistemological questions...

about 6 months ago
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The Brakes That Stop a 1,000 MPH Bloodhound SSC

mpoulton Journalism students attempting technical reporting (262 comments)

4.6kW, eh? That's 6.2 horsepower. I'm gonna go out on a limb and say that number is wrong by several orders of magnitude. 4.6MW is more likely.

about 6 months ago
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"Smart" Gun Seller Gets the Wrong Kind of Online Attention

mpoulton Re:Gun nuts (1374 comments)

A weapon intended for target practice, sport, or self defense has absolutely no need for a flash suppressor. This type of "feature" is intended for covert use of the weapon, which I'd argue falls under what most would categorize as an assault weapon.

Aside from your apparent lack of knowledge about what different types of weapons and accessories are used for, your general premise is mostly correct. Flash suppressors are more useful in actual combat than in most other situations. That type of use is exactly what the Second Amendment explicitly protects. Target practice, sport, hunting, and defense from crime are merely secondary byproducts of having a "well regulated"* militia.

* "regulated" meant "equipped" at the time it was written - see DC v. Heller for a detailed analysis.

about 7 months ago
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3D Printer Lays Down Functioning Circuitry Alongside Thermoplastic

mpoulton Silicone. Silicone. Silicone. (62 comments)

"the syringe-like printer head has used silver-filled silicon to create circuitry"

No, it didn't. That's SILICONE not silicon. I mean, come on. This is a technical article on a technical website. Can't we at least get basic chemistry right? Do you fill your car's gas tank with carbon? If there's one damn place on the internet where people can be expected to know enough about science to see the difference between a hard, shiny metallic element and a class of clear rubbery compounds that happen to contain that element, it should be here.

about 7 months ago
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Nanodot-Based Smartphone Battery Recharges In 30 Seconds

mpoulton Now it's the grid engineers' problem to solve... (227 comments)

A Tesla S has an 85kWh battery. To charge that in 30 seconds requires 10,200,000 watts of power - approximately the full electrical service to a decent size skyscraper. That's 42,500 amps at 240V, the full maximum power available to over 212 modern homes and a totally impractical amount of current to handle with any reasonable electrical equipment. So while fast-charging batteries are great and a necessary step forward in technology, the universal adoption of electric cars will require not just upgrading our infrastructure, but a complete rethinking and redevelopment of the electrical grid using not-yet-imagined technologies.

about 7 months ago
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Girl's Facebook Post Costs Her Dad $80,000

mpoulton Re:Teenagers will do stupid things? (387 comments)

As a plaintiff's attorney (the one doing the suing of large companies), I often need confidentiality terms in settlement agreements for a variety of strategic reasons. It is not an abusive tactic used by large companies against individuals, it is a specifically bargained-for provision of a settlement contract which both attorneys negotiate. The last thing anyone needs is more legislation controlling what kinds of deals people are or are not allowed to make.

about 9 months ago
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Radar Expert Explains How To Cheaply Add Radar To Your Own Hardware Projects

mpoulton Easier now, but not new to ham radio guys (69 comments)

The new single-chip radar solutions and FMCW radar modules are definitely much easier to use and more capable than what was available just a few years ago, but DIY radar is nothing new. Amateur radio operators have been playing with radar guns and door sensors for decades, and doing some pretty interesting things with them. I remember reading photocopies of articles from QST from the 1970's that explained how to hack door sensors to make speed detectors, as well as using them for long-distance voice and video transmission with parabolic reflectors. People have also been playing with marine radar, which is considerably more expensive but still affordable for a dedicated experimenter.

about 9 months ago
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Copyright Ruling On Publishing Calculated Results: Common Sense Breaks Out

mpoulton Judge Karas uses modern physics as an analogy (54 comments)

From Judge Karas' opinion: "Thus, the output data generated by using Newton’s Second Law of Motion — force equals mass times acceleration, or “F=ma” — would be a series of uncopyrightable facts, even though the output is in some sense an estimation because Newton’s formula fails does not consider relativistic effects."

No wonder he made the right decision on this case.

about 9 months ago
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Sound System Simulates the Roar of a Rocket Launch

mpoulton Re:154dB is not fatal, or unusual (113 comments)

Car audio competitors exceed 154dB all the time. That's not even close to the sound pressure levels achieved in world-class competitions: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v...

That's 28.5dB louder than this testing facility, a factor of 707 times more power.

Decibels relative to what? Maybe not ambient...

Sound pressure level is measured relative to 1dB (duh), which is typically defined as 20uPa.

about 10 months ago
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Sound System Simulates the Roar of a Rocket Launch

mpoulton Re:154dB is not fatal, or unusual (113 comments)

That's all certainly true. The facility is very impressive. Not because of the 154dB number, but because of all the other engineering factors involved. There's no doubt that the total amount of power involved is way higher than any audio system, and that it would be very unhealthy to stand in the box. It's just a bit odd and misleading to tout the SPL number as somehow being really impressive, when the chav blasting his ridiculous stereo at 3AM may be in the same dB ballpark.

about 10 months ago
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Sound System Simulates the Roar of a Rocket Launch

mpoulton 154dB is not fatal, or unusual (113 comments)

Car audio competitors exceed 154dB all the time. That's not even close to the sound pressure levels achieved in world-class competitions: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v... That's 28.5dB louder than this testing facility, a factor of 707 times more power.

about 10 months ago
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CES 2014: HAL© is a Voice- and Gesture-Operated Remote (Video)

mpoulton "Xbox play video" (46 comments)

Huh. I could have sworn Kinect already did most of this. What's the new part, exactly?

about 10 months ago

Submissions

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Poll -- slashdotters at lunch

mpoulton mpoulton writes  |  more than 6 years ago

mpoulton (689851) writes "What do you usually do for lunch?

1. No lunch
2. Vending machines
3. Bring lunch to work
4. Eat at a cafeteria/snack bar at work
5. Go grab a quick bite
6. "Do lunch" with business associates
7. Start my round of golf about that time
8. Eat At Neal's"

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