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$500k "Energy-Harvesting" Kickstarter Scam Unfolding Right Now

semi-extrinsic Re: Thanks for the tip! (448 comments)

I went to a bar in Reykjavik a month ago. Was promised "grungefunk" concert, but alas there was none. The local microbrewery stuff was good, though.

about a month ago
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Theo De Raadt's Small Rant On OpenSSL

semi-extrinsic Re:The chilling thing about Ted Unangst's analysis (301 comments)

If 2), then it was deliberate, and the tinfoil-hat crowd is right for once.

Well, it would be one very inefficient way of introducing a backdoor. The custom allocator stuff in OpenSSL is very old, but the heartbleed bug is quite recent, so someone would have had to plant a backdoor-seed if you will and then wait for many years for that tree to grow fruits. Could be done, but it doesn't sound likely.

about 4 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Software Can You Not Live Without?

semi-extrinsic Re:My list for Linux (531 comments)

Missing (IMHO):
zsh most ack gfortran mlocate keychain latexmk mupdf feh corkscrew

about 5 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Software Can You Not Live Without?

semi-extrinsic Re:You lost me at vim (531 comments)

Ah, well you see, this used to be true, but Emacs recently gained a Vim mode. I'm actually not joking. Vim rules BTW.

about 5 months ago
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Laser Headlights Promise More Intense, Controllable Beams

semi-extrinsic Re:Not blinded by laser but blinded nonetheless (376 comments)

What GP is saying is just plain wrong. If he were correct, aftermarket HIDs would be legal in the UK, and they're not.

about 6 months ago
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Laser Headlights Promise More Intense, Controllable Beams

semi-extrinsic Re:brighter? (376 comments)

The control system in my car reacts to bumps in the road, and turns the beams in the direction the car is turning.

This is what car manufacturers claim, but it's nowhere near true. The typical slewing time for the optics looks to be about 0.5 seconds from "standard" to "dipped", and that's way too slow for reacting to bumps/potholes when you're going faster than 30. I regularly get blinded by Audis, BMWs and Volvos with factory HIDs, but Mitsubishi seems to be worst. It could perhaps be that they are just worst at controlling chromatic abberations (since blue light blinds you more).

about 6 months ago
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Laser Headlights Promise More Intense, Controllable Beams

semi-extrinsic Re:brighter? (376 comments)

I sincerely doubt that is true. In Norway (which is not in the EU but strives to comply with EU regulations as far as cars are concerned) the limit has been in lumens for almost ten years. It's commonly called "E-marking" which is lumens and directionality combined and dumbed down for the regular person. Ordinary (non-HID) high beams are typically 12.5 points each, good external pencil beams are 40 points each, and you're at most allowed to have 100 points active simultaneously.

about 6 months ago
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Laser Headlights Promise More Intense, Controllable Beams

semi-extrinsic Re:..you'll be able to scream, 'fire the lasers!'" (376 comments)

There is no way these could be "better" than existing solutions, at least not for high beams. There are stringent restrictions on how much light you are allowed to emit in which directions, and if you've bought some $400 Hella Rallye Compact's you're touching that limit no matter how bad your stock headlights are. The only usefulness here is that BMW will perhaps be able to make more exotic looking headlights.

about 6 months ago
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FSF's Richard Stallman Calls LLVM a 'Terrible Setback'

semi-extrinsic Re:GCC isn't an IDE, Codebench source is free (1098 comments)

Well, maybe because it's the strictest checking compiler you can get for Fortran? It certainly has helped me find bugs that gfortran, ifort and other have missed. You seem to be unaware of the fact that despite gfortran being free and quite good, there are at least five (that I can remember without googling) commercial Fortran compilers available today, e.g. from Nvidia/PGI and from Intel, that are quite popular in the scientific community.

about 6 months ago
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FSF's Richard Stallman Calls LLVM a 'Terrible Setback'

semi-extrinsic Re:stretching indeed. Recommending != selling (1098 comments)

Well, yes and no. Their product is by definition useless without a C compiler. Many (most?) people will use what's recommended, so many (most) people are using nagfor with gcc. A Core i7, on the other hand, works fine without a C compiler of any sort (as long as you only run precompiled binaries, which is true for (definitely this time) most people). But I see your point.

about 6 months ago
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FSF's Richard Stallman Calls LLVM a 'Terrible Setback'

semi-extrinsic Re:GCC isn't an IDE, Codebench source is free (1098 comments)

I'll give you an actual (but perhaps a little stretching-the-rules) example though:
NAG's Fortran compiler. It costs money. It's a Fortran-to-C compiler, and they recommend gcc if you don't have any other preferences. To me (as a compiler user) it's not a great difference if they make a Fortran-to-C compiler where I must provide the C compiler, or if they just shipped a C compiler and did the translation "in secret".

about 6 months ago
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Stop Trying To 'Innovate' Keyboards, You're Just Making Them Worse

semi-extrinsic Re:Oh yes (459 comments)

Really? To what end?

Well, why not? I found my right-hand little finger was cramping often. Coul be 'cause I use an "ergonomic" keyboard, which is quite good except the slightly bad position of the BackSpace key.

I see you've bound it to the Compose Key. That's utterly useless to me, since I very rarely write non-ascii characters (with the exception of æøå, and those I have dedicated keys for). When I want to write greek/fraktur/whatever, I write
$\alpha \to \infty \implies \sum_0^{\infty} n = -\frac{1}{12}$ etc. and then have the rendering engine (LaTeX) take care of it.

about 6 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Are AdBlock's Days Numbered?

semi-extrinsic Re:NoScript (731 comments)

Customers are frequently wrong, and sometimes their actions are outright hostile.

Quite. I find this page to be a fun insight into the world of stupid customers.

about 6 months ago
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Stop Trying To 'Innovate' Keyboards, You're Just Making Them Worse

semi-extrinsic Re:Oh yes (459 comments)

On my work keyboard, I've swapped CapsLock and Backspace. I occasionally get frustrated by it, but that's mainly when I ssh into that machine from a laptop at home. I think there's some mental association between "being on the work machine" and "having Backspace on the left hand".

about 6 months ago
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Paging Dr. MacGyver: Maker Movement Comes To Medical Gear

semi-extrinsic Re:Hard to see this flourishing in USA (61 comments)

I doubt that Pierre and Marie Curie would have discovered so much about radioactivity if they had to go through all of your red tape.

Probably not. But their original papers are still too radioactive to touch without wearing protective equipment.

about 6 months ago
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Revolutionary Scuba Mask Creates Breathable Oxygen Underwater On Its Own

semi-extrinsic Re:It's a hoax (375 comments)

You could do the same already using scuba tanks made from carbon-fibre-titanium-nanotechnology (yeah I'm just adding buzzwords here). Those would be able to hold much more than 300 bars of pressure. You now why no-one's done that? Because during a normal plain-air dive with a 10 L 300 bar, you're not limited by the tank capacity. You're limited by how long you can stay submerged before you need to do decompression stops.

about 6 months ago
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Revolutionary Scuba Mask Creates Breathable Oxygen Underwater On Its Own

semi-extrinsic Re:Pure Oxygen? (375 comments)

Yes, pure oxygen becomes toxic below 6 meters.

about 6 months ago
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Revolutionary Scuba Mask Creates Breathable Oxygen Underwater On Its Own

semi-extrinsic Re:So what happens to the hydrogen? That's usable. (375 comments)

Very good point. Pure oxygen becomes toxic below 6 meters.

Also, looking at TFA and following the links, this looks like premium-class bullshit. No actual science, no pictures of the proposed device (just 3D renderings), this is just science-fiction.

about 6 months ago
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Building a Better Bike Helmet Out of Paper

semi-extrinsic Re:Bike helmet? (317 comments)

Because it's required by the rules of the sport. Where the rules allow the helmets to be removed (e.g. an alpine ascent), the cyclists remove them.

That doesn't rule out the possibility that the sport only allows the helmets to be removed in cases where the risk of a serious collision is much lower (e.g. an ascent, like you mentioned, where the speed is much lower).

about 7 months ago

Submissions

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Faster-than-light neutrinos may be error caused by loose cable

semi-extrinsic semi-extrinsic writes  |  more than 2 years ago

semi-extrinsic writes "Everyone remembers the faster-than-light neutrinos reported by the OPERA experiment in collaboration with CERN last year. ScienceInsider now reports that the headline-causing result may turn out to be a measurement error caused by a loose cable:

"According to sources familiar with the experiment, the 60 nanoseconds discrepancy appears to come from a bad connection between a fiber optic cable that connects to the GPS receiver used to correct the timing of the neutrinos' flight and an electronic card in a computer."

The report comes from an anonymous source, and is yet unconfirmed, but if confirmed would be a disappointing result for all those hoping that we had stumbled across new physics."
Link to Original Source

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