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Comments

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Will Lyft and Uber's Shared-Ride Service Hurt Public Transit?

ssam Could help public transport (237 comments)

I live and work in a big city, so I cycle and use public transport for about 98% of my journeys. The remaining few percent I take a taxi, which is expensive but rare enough that its not an issue. If it were 5% journeys that I could not do by bike/bus/train then I would probably have to get a car, in which case probably 90% of my journeys would be by private car.

So if you make taxis cheaper, then maybe there are a lot of people who would no longer need a car for those occasional journeys where public transport or bike is not a good option. They can then use public transport most of the time, and taxis occasionally. In cities a bus is always going to be the cheapest (unless the price of fuel and labour drops to zero)

about two weeks ago
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Fukushima Radiation Nears California Coast, Judged Harmless

ssam Re:caesium 137 bioaccumulates (113 comments)

Because quantities do matter. 8 Bq/Tonne is tiny. If you drank this water for a year (3 litre per day), and your body somehow managed to store every Caesium atom, then that would be less radiation than 1 banana and less than 1% the radiation that is in your body naturally.

All this article shows is that radiation is easy to detect, even in tiny quantities, and gamma ray spectroscopy lets you identify the isotope, which in some cases means you can trace the origin.

The "no safe level" meme is mad. Its like saying that because if car hits you at 50 mhp you have a 50% chance of dying, so if it hits you at 1mph you have a 1% chance of dying (linear no threshold), even a 1 in a million chance of dying is dangerous, so even cars travelling at the speed of continental drift are dangerous.

about two weeks ago
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Fukushima Radiation Nears California Coast, Judged Harmless

ssam Re:Units. (113 comments)

There are more different units for distance. Actually its all the units for brightness that confuse me the most.

There are actually really only 2 physical units,
Activity, i.e. decays per second, Becquerel
Absorbed does, i.e. joule per kg, Greys
and a bonus biologically adjusted
Equivalent dose, like Greys adjusted by biological harm, Sievert

The others are obsolete (only used in USA).

about two weeks ago
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Eben Upton Explains the Raspberry Pi Model A+'s Redesign

ssam Re:Nice and all (107 comments)

They probably will at some point, but for now plenty of CPU and RAM for many tasks. There are plenty of other boards based around faster CPUs armv7 or x86 if that's what you need.

about two weeks ago
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Raspberry Pi A+ Details Leaked

ssam Re:Will it have the same garbage CPU? (141 comments)

I had a beagleboard http://beagleboard.org/beagleb... , $125, though about £120 GBP to order in the UK. So switching to the pi gave me something smaller, cheaper, more reliable (I had various issues with the USB on the BB), with ethernet and accessible GPIOs.

Beaglebone Black is quite nice, and closer in price to Pi, but I have not personally made any projects where it would be an advantage over a Pi. I for the Pi that I use as a desktop (mostly with just a bunch of terminals SSHed to big machines), it might be a bit faster, but I'd need to add a USB hub to connect a mouse and keyboard.

about two weeks ago
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Raspberry Pi A+ Details Leaked

ssam Re:Will it have the same garbage CPU? (141 comments)

Many tasks,
http://hackaday.com/tag/raspbe...
http://makezine.com/category/e...
Seems to me like thousands of people are finding interesting things to do. Of course it is not fast enough for everything, but nor is my i7 laptop, or the 48core server box I use at work.

Small. Ok, that's relative. Its been fine for my uses, smaller than the beagleboard and mini-itx boards I used before. The A+ is even smaller. Interested to know what project you are doing where the pi is too big and too slow, what do you use instead?

Cheap. sorry if $25/$35 is too expensive. Its a quarter the price of the beaglebaord that I used before. Maybe you can find something cheaper for your specific task.

Widely available. In the UK there are several high street shops with it in stock, and lots of online retailers.

Documentation. Personally GPU docs don't interest me (though they are now released, so its the most open arm SoC). When I have wanted to use the pi in a project I have found lots of documentation and tutorials to help me.

Well supported. 2.5 years after release they are still doing regular software updates, including big things like wayland support. Compared to lots of hardware that is released with some old distro image that never gets any updates.

So yes the raspberrypi is awesome. It lets lots of people do interesting things at a good price. Sure for certain things an atmega, beaglebaord, banana pi, gumstix, galileo, an old pc or something else might be better.

about two weeks ago
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Raspberry Pi A+ Details Leaked

ssam Re:Arietta G25 (141 comments)

Interesting board if you don't need all the features and performance of the pi. Though it says "Since this is early stage of development, no documentation is available".

about two weeks ago
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Raspberry Pi A+ Details Leaked

ssam Re:Down side (141 comments)

Arduino has 2k of RAM and people do all sorts of interesting things with it. rpi is definitely not suitable for everything, but is already overkill for many tasks people use it for.

about two weeks ago
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Raspberry Pi A+ Details Leaked

ssam Re:Will it have the same garbage CPU? (141 comments)

Actually they have made pretty good progress in this area. Ahead of most (maybe all) other arm boards and most PCs.
http://www.raspberrypi.org/ope...
http://www.raspberrypi.org/a-b...
http://www.raspberrypi.org/qua...

Though i suspect when most people say well documented they mean that pretty much whatever you want to do with a pi you can easily find good tutorials. Want to hook up some electronics to so you can read/control them over a network, raspberrypi is probably the easiest (and cheapest) option.

about two weeks ago
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Raspberry Pi A+ Details Leaked

ssam Re:Will it have the same garbage CPU? (141 comments)

The popularity of the arduino shows that CPU performance is not everything. rpi is fast enough to do many tasks, it is small, cheap, widely available, well documented and well supported. That's why its popular.

about two weeks ago
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New Atomic Clock Reaches the Boundaries of Timekeeping

ssam Re:Old saying (249 comments)

If you are in a boat you probably have a good idea about your altitude, so a 2d fix is all you really need.

about three weeks ago
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UN Climate Change Panel: It's Happening, and It's Almost Entirely Man's Fault

ssam Re:Obviously. (695 comments)

More like we went in and started pressing buttons. Then a light came one. You advocate that we keep mashing the buttons, because it would be dangerous to stop?

about three weeks ago
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UN Climate Change Panel: It's Happening, and It's Almost Entirely Man's Fault

ssam Re:Obviously. (695 comments)

The climate is not something that you can wait for particle physics style 5-sigma certainty on. We can't run thousands of parallel earths with different atmosphere to see exactly what will happen. What we have is a growing body of observations. You don't wait for a doctor to be 99.99% sure about the day you will die before accepting any treatment, you trust that they will make a good guess based on limited observations they have.

about three weeks ago
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16-Teraflops, £97m Cray To Replace IBM At UK Meteorological Office

ssam As a British nerd (125 comments)

As a British nerd my 2 favourite topics of conversation are the weather and super computers, so this is exciting news.

about a month ago

Submissions

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Fairphone reaches 5000 preorders, starts production

ssam ssam writes  |  about a year and a half ago

ssam (2723487) writes "The Fairphone is an ethical smartphone made using conflict-free materials under fair working conditions. It has a Quadcore CPU, dual SIM and all the usual smartphone specs. They needed 5000 preorders to start production, and reached that goal today."
Link to Original Source
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CERN Physicists Announce the Substandard Model

ssam ssam writes  |  about a year and a half ago

ssam (2723487) writes "Now that we are on the verge of completing the Standard Model of Particle Physics, it's time to look to the future of the field. Five physicists at CERN present their new state of the art theory: The Substandard Model of Physics!"
Link to Original Source
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Decay: A Zombie Film Set at the LHC

ssam ssam writes  |  about 2 years ago

ssam (2723487) writes "I'm part of a group of physics PhD students who are about to release a feature-length zombie film, shot entirely on location at CERN near Geneva (although not officially authorised by CERN). It was filmed on borrowed DSLRs on home made rigs with a non-existant budget, and will be released online in a few weeks under a CC-BY-NC licence. For now there's a trailer on the site and youtube to whet your appetite!

The film follows a small group of students (played by physicists) after a disastrous malfunction in the LHC. As they try to escape from the underground maintenance tunnels, they are hunted by the remains of a maintenance team, who have become less than human."

Link to Original Source

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