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Bill Gates: Piketty's Attack on Income Inequality Is Right

slinches Re:Let me get this right (832 comments)

How does inflation fund government services to the general populace?

Inflation allows the government to borrow at net interest rates near zero or lower. As long as inflation is higher than the interest rate on the loan, the interest costs are offset by paying the loan back in devalued currency.

5 days ago
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Fuel Efficiency Numbers Overstate MPG More For Cars With Small Engines

slinches Re:I don't the big MPG/GPM deal (403 comments)

I haven't driven a car in the past 15 years that didn't have a "distance to empty" option on the dash.

And I haven't driven a vehicle in the last 15 years that has such a feature. But then all I've driven in that time is a basic light pickup and a Jeep. I know range features are available, but they're more common in higher end domestic or import passenger cars.

Anyway, MPG's a useless metric for figuring out whether you need to stop for gas, unless you also know how big your tank is. If you do, then you're doing the math in your head to duplicate the distance to empty calculation on your dash.

Why would someone not know how big their tank is? There should be a clear reminder of the size every time you fill up.

Finally, the portion of the population who routinely take drives with >150 miles between gas stations is tremendously small.

There are quite a lot of people who live in the western US and Canada, where this is true.

Not that my anecdotes best yours, it's just that there would need to be conclusive evidence that a change would be worth the expense incurred and the arguments for gpm style fuel efficiency ratings don't seem (to me) to be compelling enough to justify such an action.

about two weeks ago
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Fuel Efficiency Numbers Overstate MPG More For Cars With Small Engines

slinches Re:I don't the big MPG/GPM deal (403 comments)

Fundamentally, we're not interested in how far we can go on X gallons of gas, we're interested in how much gas it will take us to drive to our destination. GPM lets us compare that directly, while MPG doesn't.

But that's only true when making a decision between different cars. It's far more common (at least it is where I live) to have to quickly calculate whether I need to stop for gas now or if I can make it to the next town that's ~150 miles away in the car I'm currently driving.

about two weeks ago
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IBM Solar Concentrator Can Produce12kW/day, Clean Water, and AC

slinches Re:Cubic litres (268 comments)

It must be the higher dimensionality thing since he successfully converts that to 350 cubic gallons (imperial, no less) a bit further along.

Alternatively, the water produced by this process is cubic in shape which would make it difficult to use with traditional plumbing systems.

about a month ago
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Wave Power Fails To Live Up To Promise

slinches Re:Golden opportunity missed... (198 comments)

Oh, darn. We must be on different wavelengths. Last I heard, they were doing swell.

I guess these sorts of things just ebb and flow with the economic tides.

about a month ago
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Sci-Fi Authors and Scientists Predict an Optimistic Future

slinches I believe!! (191 comments)

This is inspiration incarnate. Now we can create any sort of wondrous future we desire and the main project heiroglyph page is all I needed to see for proof. It's marginally functional without javascript!!!!

about a month ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Old Technology Can't You Give Up?

slinches Re:Model M Keyboard (635 comments)

In my limited experience, MX Browns are a good compromise. Still some tactile feedback without being obnoxiously loud.

Buckling springs and blues are enough to make neighbors in a cube farm go postal and aren't that much better.

about 2 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Old Technology Can't You Give Up?

slinches Re:Cable Lacing (635 comments)

If you like cable lacing, you'd probably love lock wiring.

Even if it's horribly labor intensive, the end result sure looks nice.

about 2 months ago
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Amazon Fire Phone Reviews: Solid But Overly Ambitious

slinches Re:How thrilling... (58 comments)

True, but Understanding of others' Ignorance also Brings Fear

Also, it's a Futurama reference.

about 3 months ago
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Western US States Using Up Ground Water At an Alarming Rate

slinches Re:Lumping everyone together.... (377 comments)

I responded to a similar comment by an AC earlier, but allowing Arizona's share to go unused would be in addition to the amount agreed to go to Mexico.

about 3 months ago
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Western US States Using Up Ground Water At an Alarming Rate

slinches Re:Lumping everyone together.... (377 comments)

This is an obvious troll, but to clarify, there's an agreement in place to ensure that a set amount of water will flow into Mexico. You can read more about it HERE. I was implying that if Arizona didn't use or sell its share that it would flow across the border in addition to what is guaranteed by law.

about 3 months ago
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Western US States Using Up Ground Water At an Alarming Rate

slinches Re:Lumping everyone together.... (377 comments)

We shouldn't have 6 million people living in a desert that can barely naturally support 1/10 that many. And pumping several hundred thousand acre feet of water over a mountain range for Phoenix is a terrible waste of water, not to mention the water lost to evaporation in the process and the power used.

I get it, you don't like the Central Arizona Project, but without it what would Arizona do with it's share of the Colorado? I think it's better to deliver it to where it's needed (i.e. Phoenix) than sell it to southern California or let it flow into Mexico unused. The areas nearest the river are poor areas for development anyway.

about 3 months ago
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A Warm-Feeling Wooden Keyboard (Video)

slinches Most surfaces non-plastic? (82 comments)

Plastic, plastic everywhere! Except on most surfaces of the Keyboardio ergonomic keyboard

The key caps are still plastic, so depending how you count the surfaces that's 94-99% plastic. Maybe if you calculate it by area but exclude the sides of the keys and ignore that you'll almost never need to touch the aluminum portions, it might drop below 50%.

about 3 months ago
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Amazon Fire Phone Reviews: Solid But Overly Ambitious

slinches Re:How thrilling... (58 comments)

Yes, but only because Amazon refuses to release the app for Android because they want you to buy a Kindle/Fire Phone instead, so you can be locked into their walled garden.

about 3 months ago
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Airbus Patents Windowless Cockpit That Would Increase Pilots' Field of View

slinches Re:Windows as point of weakness (468 comments)

Just because the problem is "solved" (i.e. designs have improved to the point where this failure mode is no longer critical), doesn't mean that there aren't better (lower cost/weight and stronger) solutions available if the design constraints are changed by the availability of new technologies.

Now is it as safe or safer than current designs? I don't know, but I don't see a compelling reason why it couldn't be. I'm certain there will be quite a lot of testing and analysis of failure rates, system redundancies and the capabilities of the associated degraded states before regulatory agencies approve the use of this type of system.

about 3 months ago
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Supreme Court Rules Against Aereo Streaming Service

slinches Re:Never understood the problem (484 comments)

The problem is that Congress made that illegal specifically to address community antenna television (CATV) operators who did almost exactly what you describe.

about 4 months ago
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Supreme Court Rules Against Aereo Streaming Service

slinches Re:The key distinction in the ruling (484 comments)

This is a good summary, but for the tl;dr crowd the opinion of the Court is essentially relying on the duck test. e.g. "if it looks like CATV and acts like CATV it is CATV"

The dissent clearly shows the flaws in this reasoning.

about 4 months ago
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Amazon Dispute Now Making Movies Harder To Order

slinches Re:Stallman on boycotting Amazon.com (210 comments)

Yeah, I got that. Hence the mention that that family vs. stranger is irrelevant. This is about people being allowed to make decisions for themselves. As long as they enter into an employment contract fully informed, where's the unfairness?

about 4 months ago
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Satellite Swarm Spots North Pole Drift

slinches 3 is a "swarm"? (80 comments)

Since when are three objects considered a swarm? If that's acceptable it should be appended to the list.

about 4 months ago

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