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Prof. Andy Tanenbaum Retires From Vrije University

tuxicle Re:What I remember (136 comments)

Yes, but the TSA will want to inspect each of those flash drives, so the effective bandwidth would be quite low. At least in the US. Maybe that's why we have such atrocious broadband connectivity.

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Correlation Between Text Editor and Programming Language?

tuxicle Mostly vim (359 comments)

Mostly vim, and I have to write C, perl, shell scripts and VHDL. Sometimes use Eclipse while working on projects with ARM7 embedded CPUs, but I find myself missing vim.

about a month ago
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Radar Expert Explains How To Cheaply Add Radar To Your Own Hardware Projects

tuxicle Re:Question about "Doppler Dilemma" (69 comments)

It's easier than that - use two blocks of different repetition frequencies (which gives two different Nyquist velocities), get two velocity readings. Some basic number theory will get you the right answer.

Using two different carriers is going to alter the Nyquist velocity by such a small amount that it's not worth doing. Unless the carriers are very widely separated (go from say, 2.7 GHz to 5.8 GHz) but this requires a wideband (and necessarily low gain) antenna.

That's not to say that FHSS is not used by weather radar - its purpose is to improve the quality of measurements by increasing the number of statistically independent samples that get averaged together.

about 5 months ago
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NSA and GHCQ Employing Shills To Poison Web Forum Discourse

tuxicle Re:I wonder (347 comments)

I wonder how many shills make "first post"

about 5 months ago
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The New Ethanol Blend May Damage Your Vehicle

tuxicle Re:It's not just the rubber parts... (375 comments)

There's also the effect of water absorption causing corrosion to metal parts, and promoting water absorption in certain plastic fuel tanks. The latter has resulted in a lawsuit with motorcycle manufacturer Ducati, where they agreed to replace the tanks that were swelling and in some cases, rupturing due to water absorption. This only happened in the US, after E-10 fuel became popular. Regular octane does not absorb water.

My Ducati's past warranty, so the tank replacement offer doesn't cover me, once my tank swells or ruptures, I'm hosed.

about a year and a half ago
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Pennsylvania Fracking Law Opens Up Drilling On College Campuses

tuxicle Re:LOL, welcome to united states of hurrdurr (208 comments)

I agree - the same is true here in Colorado, where land owned by Colorado State (a land-grant university) has been open to drilling for several years already. The university owns lots of land, often many tens of miles away from the main campus, for such things as experimental farms, aircraft hangars and radar sites. Most of them have been drilled using the "horizontal" approach, so no equipment directly on site. I know this because I work on one of the remote sites, and was around when they drilled some 500 feet away from my building. The oil company folks came over and explained that we may hear odd sounds when they did the frakking (I didn't). The university has made quite a bit of money off the wells, which translated to no student fee increases for a couple of years (this year was an exception, though).

about 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Equipment and Furniture For an Electronics Hardware Lab?

tuxicle Re:Depends what you're working on... (208 comments)

Instead of isolation transformers, you could use two scope channels and the subtract function. It works well enough for low-speed work. Probably won't capture transients and anything beyond about 1 MHz, though.

about 2 years ago
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Preparing For Life After the PC

tuxicle Re:still premature (636 comments)

I wonder what fraction of these folks will be more receptive of smartphones or tablets.

about 2 years ago
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Preparing For Life After the PC

tuxicle Re:Replace, or augment? (636 comments)

Even *if* you posit a dystopian future where the $BEC controls everything, there will *still* be PCs, because *someone* will still have to produce data. They may become much less common, but a PC, or a PC-functional device, *will* be necessary.

My worry is that this same phenomenon will lead to less data/content being produced. We're in a situation now where PCs are in virtually every home, every kid has access to one, and ones who are curious/lucky enough will stumble upon some interest of theirs that they can use this hardware to explore (examples: home recording studios, 3D modelling, CAD of various kinds, software development tools.) In a tablet-and-smartphone world, PCs will get expensive, and out of the reach of most kids/amateurs, who'd have no opportunity to explore their creativity.

about 2 years ago
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US Navy's High-Resolution Radar Can See Individual Raindrops In a Storm

tuxicle Re:useful.... (161 comments)

I'm not referring to searching through the data to make a detection, yes computers are awesome at that. Just making the measurements over an appreciable fraction of the sky with such accuracy would take a long time. It has its applications, for example when observing the space shuttle (you only need to search a small volume around the shuttle) or when tracking ballistic missles for interception (which is the original purpose for this radar system). So to obtain useful update rates (say, once every minute) at such high resolution, you will need an astronomically large number of radars. If you scale back the resolution, though, this is achievable, and has in fact already been implemented. Disclaimer: I was peripherally involved in the CASA project.

more than 2 years ago
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US Navy's High-Resolution Radar Can See Individual Raindrops In a Storm

tuxicle Re:useful.... (161 comments)

If you have a radar that is sensitive enough to see individual rain drops, you should easily be able to see the low-RCS (also called Stealth) aircraft. They are not invisible, just *less* visible than traditional aircraft. Notice the details in the article, though: these measurements were made at a range of 2 km from the radar, over a volume the size of a small bus. Setting aside the very short range, to search the entire sky with a resolution that high would take a very long time.

more than 2 years ago
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Osama Bin Laden Didn't Encrypt His Files

tuxicle Re:Obligatory XKCD (333 comments)

What part of "Obligatory" did you not understand?

more than 2 years ago
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Automated Dorm Room Causes a School Inquiry

tuxicle Re:I fail to see the innovation (170 comments)

I'd normally rant a bit here about lowered bars and such. Kids these days...

more than 2 years ago
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Automated Dorm Room Causes a School Inquiry

tuxicle Re:School inquiry? (170 comments)

For the HV stuff you better be more careful - even if stuff is off the residual charge can be enough to kill you.

Aye, grounding sticks are your friend!

more than 2 years ago
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Automated Dorm Room Causes a School Inquiry

tuxicle Re:School inquiry? (170 comments)

I'm not an electrician either (I'm an EE), but if you take some decent precautions (insulated sleeve screwdriver, or a stubby), it's not so dangerous to open out a wall switch. What's a lot more dangerous is if you have anything with both hot and neutral close together - then you're in danger of arc flash, which IMO is quite a bit more dangerous than live-to-ground leakage.

Also, don't fog machines use glycol? It does leave a residue that can, at first glance, look oily, but its not the same thing

more than 2 years ago
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Mastering Engineer Explains Types of Compression, Effects On Today's Music

tuxicle Re:obligatory... (382 comments)

Oh you can fix that easy - just use a Golden Sound Intelligent Chip, I'm sure they've upgraded the technology to work with SSDs too. Of course, there's always the old standby, the Altmann Tube-o-lator, I suppose it makes all the MP3 files stored on the NAND flash take on a warm "tube sound".

more than 2 years ago
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Flash Memory, Not Networks, Hamper Smartphones Most

tuxicle Re:Cut back a little (121 comments)

What about stories of how RAM chips today are too slow to keep up with cutting edge CPUs?

more than 2 years ago
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India Turns Down American Fighter Jets, Buys From France

tuxicle Re:Decision was between Rafale vs Typhoon (600 comments)

The competition was called the MRCA - Multirole Combat Aircraft, for a medium weight aircraft (max takeoff weight 25 tons). The Su-30MKI has an MTOW of nearly 39 tons, and if you've ever seen one up close, they are HUGE aircraft.

more than 2 years ago

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