* Posts by Blake St. Claire

261 posts • joined 20 Feb 2008

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McCain: Come to my encryption hearing. Tim Cook: No, I'm good. McCain: I hate you, I hate you, I hate you

Blake St. Claire

Re: They have subpoena powers

Well, the probably would swear him in, to tell the truth, the whole truth, etc.

Should he choose not to answer or give nonsense answers they could probably find him in contempt of Congress; jail time might be an effective incentive, fines probably not so much.

But IANAL, so these are just guesses on my part.

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Idiot brings gun-shaped iPhone to airport

Blake St. Claire

Re: Not THAT realistic

You did read the bit about how the perp did _not_ have the faux firearm in his hip pocket as the photo shows. It was found during a routine security check. Perhaps whilst x-raying his carryon luggage? We don't know actually.

Stansted (no spellcheck, it's not stagnated) does tell people[1] that toy guns and replica weapons may not be carried in hand luggage, although if you saw the whole thing[2] in an x-ray, instead of just part of it, maybe you wouldn't be nearly as quick to pop a few rounds into the twit. Or maybe you would!

[1] http://www.stanstedairport.com/at-the-airport/security/hand-baggage/

[2] http://www.telegraph.co.uk/content/dam/news/2016/07/07/102660472-iphone-NEWS-large_trans++rXQPXGvM58CJoUBPwmOnP8ZizxpLuZqzh9z0a2I7-Dw.jpg

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Last panel in place, China ready to boot up giant telescope

Blake St. Claire

Re: Creeping Americanisation

> never mind how big a baseball field actually is

They're all different sizes, so not a useful metric for anything.

But in Texas I suppose you would use the Astros or the Rangers fields.

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Cali bloke accused of illegally trousering $68k using mom's Apple AuthenTec gobble tip-off

Blake St. Claire

Oh puhleaze

Cali is what the hipsters (chavs?) that live elsewhere call California. (I don't live there now, but I've spent about half my life there.)

And risking jail time for insider trading for a measly $68K is just stupid. The dude's brother and mother are probably going to get seriously slapped too as a result of his stupidity. What a wanker.

As for capitalism and using what you know to do what seems normal? Well, we could just go back to the good ol' days and let people tell lies and cheat to manipulate the market in their favor. That's capitalism too. I grew up being told life isn't fair, so I won't argue that the stock markets should be "fair"; I would, however, like them to be reasonable secure from manipulation.

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In obesity fight, UK’s heavy-handed soda tax beats US' watered-down warning

Blake St. Claire

> Its not like being fat creeps up on you, to get to 20st you first have to get to 15/16/17...

Easy to say.

(Dunno, I never remember how many pounds in a stone. Not going to look it up.) I was 200lbs for a long time. Then a job change about 15 years ago and nobody to play racquetball/squash/basketball at lunch any more and before you know it i was up to 240. I fscking jumped off the scale when I saw that. I knew I had put on a few pounds, but didn't realize it was that much.

And then losing it, and keeping it off is hard. Bloody hard.

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Tech titans demand free speech law to head off President Trump

Blake St. Claire

Re: vexatious litigant, eh?

> Obama's signature accomplishment (ObamaCare health insurance)

Real name: Affordable Care Act (ACA). The haters are the ones who started calling it Obamacare. It really should be called Romneycare though, because it's pretty much exactly what Romney (a Republican BTW) signed into law when he was the governor of Massachusetts.

> has caused an increase in everyone's health insurance premiums (at least those who don't get the government handouts)

Everyone's? No, not mine.

> and pretty much everyone who had health insurance prior to this government handout have seen their actual insurance coverage drop

Again, not mine. And I have a really tough time believing that I'm very different from the average guy or gal here buying health care coverage.

/me wonders what you're smoking.

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Feinstein-Burr's bonkers backdoor crypto law is dead in the water

Blake St. Claire

The Floor of Congress?

Being picky, usually we say "The Floor of the House (of Representatives)" or "The Floor of the Senate."

Congress is both houses. Rather like Parliament. IIRC you don't say, e.g., that the PM is the leader of Parliament; he's the leader of the House of Commons. (Unless you don't really count the House of Lords, then I suppose the PM is the leader of Parliament.)

And in the case of Burr and Feinstein's bill, AFAIK there was never a matching bill in the House.

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India launches hypersonic space shuttle precursor

Blake St. Claire

India doesn't want our aid

British or American!

They've been begging us to stop sending it. [1]

They themselves send a fair amount of aid to other countries. [2]

[1] http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/india/9061844/India-tells-Britain-We-dont-want-your-aid.html

[2] http://www.popularsocialscience.com/2013/06/24/why-does-india-provide-development-aid-to-other-developing-countries/

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Microsoft joins the 1c/GB/month cloud storage caper

Blake St. Claire

Don't you lot know how to type a ¢ sign?

At least El Reg isn't as bad as that other site – er \, or something I think – and we can write such odd things as Æ and ð and þ when we post here.

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Carders cash out hundreds of millions before USA adopts EMV

Blake St. Claire

Re: Americans stone age banking rules.

> Try to use an out of state bank card? No sale in many cities.

This only happens to me when I forget to tell my Credit Union that I'm traveling. It's a security (mis)feature.

My other bank seems less concerned and allows charges from anywhere in the world without advance notice.

It has nothing to do with banking rules, stone age or otherwise.

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Blake St. Claire

Not true

> the US card companies are not issuing pins yet.

I received my replacement C&P card a couple weeks ago and promptly set the PIN after activating it.

Last year I asked for C&P replacements for my Amex and corporate travel CC. For those the card issuer assigned the PIN and sent a separate mail with them.

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This year's H-1B visa lottery jammed full in just six days

Blake St. Claire

Re: H-1B vs. just send the jobs overseas

Then there's the often suggested threat to park a cruise ship – probably a decrepit old one, without any of the fun bits – 100 miles off shore and fill it with IT workers.

Then they're in the same time zone and you don't even have to pay India wages – which really aren't as cheap as some people make them out to be, or even China wages.

Scary. Very scary.

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Blake St. Claire

Re: Sanders

> Might I request that Leftpondian readers please make the correct choice in the coming election ... ?

You're preaching to the choir.

Perhaps you could come over and have a talk with all the Trump supporters? They say everything sounds better with a British accent; maybe that will work on them. ($deity knows, not much else seems to work on them.)

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Whatever happened to ... Nest?

Blake St. Claire

I tried the smoke & CO2 detector as an experiment, it sucks

The Gen1 detector decide to go crazy and started firing at random times, usually around 3AM. The other non-Nest detector I have never peeped even once. When the other detector did go off (frying bacon or something and forgot the vent) the Nest didn't do a thing. That seemed to be the magic word – when customer support heard that they promptly offered to ship a replacement. Thankfully the Gen2 version hasn't decided to go off in the wee hours, so far.

As a failed experiment I'm not going to plunk down even bigger bucks for the thermostat. I bought a considerably more affordable "wifi" unit, using a rebate from my gas co., that made it nearly free; it's perfectly adequate. Maybe in ten years when this one dies, and/or I can get another rebate, and/or Nest prices come down in line with the competition.

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Is there anything left to ask Bill Gates? (Other than gissus a million?)

Blake St. Claire

Re: Does anyone really think he knows something we don't?

There are plenty of stocks doing better than MSFT. And better than a money market.

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Blake St. Claire

Does anyone really think he knows something we don't?

Like when Microsoft stock might outperform a money market account (that barely pays 1%).

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Dead Steve Jobs is still a crook – and Apple must cough up $450m for over-pricing ebooks

Blake St. Claire

how old is that picture?

SJ has hair and isn't wearing a black turtleneck, That's a PPC G4 case, looks like Netscape Navigator on the CRT screen.

Apropos of nothing in particular.

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Louisville says yes to Google Fiber. Funny story: AT&T, TWC didn't want that to happen

Blake St. Claire

I wish Google would come to where I live.

I have both Comcast and Verizon FIOS available. There's absolutely zero competition in terms of price.

I have broadband-only service contract grandfathered from a reseller back when the law required that unbundled services to be available to resellers. I don't see any way to buy broadband-only service from either company today.

I've "cut the cord", so I don't need their "phone" service. And I'm not interested in their TV bundles, and neither offers "a la carte" for the TV channels that I'd actually care to watch. (For local channels OTA works just fine.)

Unfortunately the greater metropolitan area where I live consists of dozens of small towns and Google would have to negotiate with each one to serve the whole area, so it seems unlikely they'll come here any time soon, if ever.

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Steve Jobs mural highlights plight of Syrian refugees

Blake St. Claire

Jobs Syrian?

If so, then I'm German. Or English. Or Irish. No, I was born here, and spent 95% of my life living here. I'm an American. No matter what my father, or grandfathers, or great-grandfathers were.

SJ was born here, raised here, spent 100% of life here. Whatever his biological and adoptive parents are, or were, matters not. He's an American.

Trying to claim that blocking refugees – Syrian or otherwise – risks missing the next SJ? I certainly "get the point" but I think it's a stretch.

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Europe didn't catch the pox from Christopher Columbus – scientists

Blake St. Claire

Re: Don't forget the chocolate!

Chocolate? In the form brought back from the Americas circa 1500? A cause for diabetes? Better brush up on your facts. Chocolate back then wasn't anything like a Cadbury milk chocolate bar. And I rather doubt old Chris brought back any chocolate. He only got as as far as the Caribbean and chocolate comes form the mainland.

But cane sugar, from India, predates chocolate in Europe. Personally I'd be blaming diabetes on sugar. I'm led to believe it was the crack cocaine of Baroque Europe.

And on the topic of new world foods: there's also tomatoes, chilis, and pumpkins, on top of maize (corn), potatoes, and chocolate already mentioned. Makes me wonder what the Indians (as in India Indians) would be eating today instead of curry. Or what the indigenous peoples of sub-Saharan Africa would be eating instead of corn and pumpkins.

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Aussies' distinctive Strine down to drunk forefathers

Blake St. Claire

Yeah, which American accent? And which British accent?

I spent half an hour chatting with the barmaid in a local in Norwich before she realized I wasn't "from around here." Her accent was pretty mild too. I suppose my accent is "California," as that's where I grew up, but I've probably retained a bit of Chicago and South African.

And the early pilgrims were mostly from Norfolk if I remember my history.

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I have one thing to say to MacBook users at EMC: Whoops

Blake St. Claire
Holmes

It's apparently really hard

> just shows how hard it is to transition from a hardware company to a software company.

I interviewed for a position at EMC back in 1994. They were looking at Microsoft and desperately wanted to be a software company. (I didn't take the job.) In the intervening years I interviewed at a variety of companies – some were software companies, some were hardware companies. At every one I asked the same question: why {software,hardware}? Unilaterally they all said the same thing: we make a XX% markup on {software,hardware}, we can't come close to that in {hardware,software}. Years later I did take a job at EMC. They were still a hardware company. I don't see that changing under Dell.

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PHONE me if you feel DIRTY: Yanks and 'Nadians wave bye-bye to magstripe

Blake St. Claire

> You can't get a cash advance with a credit card out of an ATM with a PIN?

Sure, with a hefty fee attached.

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Apple: Hey TV people, wanna be in the same place Samsung phones are these days?

Blake St. Claire

not setting the bar very high

> offer streaming video, similar to that of Netflix or Hulu.

Netflix is okay. Is there anything worth watching on Hulu? Since Hulu+ came along I only watch The Simpsons. Sorry, I'm not going to pay for two steaming, er, streaming video services.

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Post-pub nosh neckfiller: The Ugandan 'rolex'

Blake St. Claire

Over here we'd call that a breakfast burrito

But we'd make it with a tortilla, which come ready made in packages of ten.

Well, not exactly, but close enough for government work.

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Open-source Linux doesn't pay, said no one ever at Red Hat

Blake St. Claire

here you go

https://access.redhat.com/products/red-hat-enterprise-linux/evaluation

I suppose next you'll whinge about having to sign up for a free account to get the free eval license to use the free software. amirite?

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Vietnam-lovin' VoIP man's 50-nation tally couldn't hold him back

Blake St. Claire

Do the math?

He's 23! Most Americans graduate with a bachelors degree at age 22, sometimes 21. Or maybe he dropped out? Anyway, in somewhere between one and three years I guess, he's spent time in 50 countries? That makes an average (mean) of 20 days in each. Long stays in Hungary and Switzerland? What would that be, 30 days?

Ex pat? I wouldn't say he's ever been in any place long enough to be considered a true expat.

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The Walton kids are ABSURDLY wealthy – and you're benefitting

Blake St. Claire

Re: I think you might be overlooking a couple things

I'm not paying 30% or 35%, but it sure as hell feels like a protection racket all the same. In addition to federal and state tax, I pay the equivalent of your council tax. In exchange I get roads, schools, police, and fire department. My federal and state taxes give me prisons, judges, and an army, among other things.

The police and the army are there for what, exactly, if not to keep the chavs from breaking in and taking my stuff.

It's all about how much I pay, or should be paying, for the service, right?

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Blake St. Claire

I think you might be overlooking a couple things

For one I think you should add ASDA to your story.

I certainly applaud anyone who can make a fortune. Those four Waltons didn't make anything.

Was it daddy Sam's prerogative to give it to them? Sure it was.

Should they be taxed more than 33% for it? Absolutely. The costs of maintaining society so that the unwashed masses don't break down their gates and take everything is, at a guess, certainly much higher than what they're paying.

Those 1%ers who complain about high taxes now should be glad they not paying the top rate during the Reagan, Eisenhower, or Hoover administrations. (Republicans all, in case you don't know.)

And it's Scrooge, not Scrouge, McDuck. Check your Dickens.

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Bride legs it from wedding after groom proves unable to add up

Blake St. Claire

Arranged marriages

I wonder why every article covering this – including the original AP article – ends with a comment about arranged marriages in India?

Was this an arranged marriage?

My colleagues in India tell me that these days "love marriages" have grown quite common and arranged marriages are less and less common.

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'Just a kid' Zuck's word is his bond ... but NOT in his backyard, lawsuit claims

Blake St. Claire

Indeed. California law requires all contracts for real property to be in writing. This is Business Law 101 kind of stuff. If "introductions" were part of the consideration for the exchange, that should have been in the contract. (Verbal contracts for many other things are okay, even if not a very good idea.)

Not getting it in writing is an amateur mistake; one he's going to regret. I just can't imagine him having the proverbial ice cube's chance.

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Blind justice: Google lawsuit silences elected state prosecutor

Blake St. Claire

Re: very good article, thank you, with one minor nitpick

another nitpick: not all state prosecutors are elected.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/State_attorney_general

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GERONTIC 'Ghost ship' prowled the undersea cables of the 1940s

Blake St. Claire

Re: I did enjoy seeing the HURL acronym

This just in from the Department of Redundancy Department:

The USA of America?

Right. And our neighbors, Estados Unidos de Mexico de Mexico.

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Wheels fall off bid to sue Apple over iTunes anti-piracy shenanigans

Blake St. Claire

Re: You dont get a plaintif in a murder case either

> You dont get a plaintif in a murder case either

I don't believe that's true.

In the criminal trial for the murder of Nichole Brown Simpson, the plaintiff was The People of the State of California.

In the civil trial the plaintiffs were her family. And no, O.J. wasn't subject to double jeopardy.

IANAL, and maybe where you live things are different.

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Royal Navy parks 470 double-decker buses on Queen Elizabeth

Blake St. Claire

> Is that in US measurements?

If they painted it in the US then yes; otherwise no.

Are your speed limits still in MPH?

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Blake St. Claire

> sports "1.5 million m² of paint covering 370 acres", says the ministry in an unfortunate collision of imperial and metric.

We should be happy we weren't told that 1.5 million m² of paint covers 1.5 million m² of whatever it covers. OTOH, how many liters (or gallons) of paint was that?

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Apple's top bean counter: New spaceship HQ won't emit 'one atom of carbon'

Blake St. Claire

Re: How much CO2 will be emitted in construction

Concrete? Unlike Asia and Africa, most modern construction here is steel, 'though the floors and foundation are certainly concrete.

And I'm sure the production of the steel produces lots of greenhouse gas. Not to mention the glass and sheetrock and everything else that goes into it.

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I am NOT a PC repair man. I will NOT get your iPad working

Blake St. Claire
Linux

Re: This is all too familiar.

Yeah, that happens to me on the job too. I bashed up some changes to the RPM spec file once and now everyone thinks I own the fscking thing. Latest was a whinger who didn't like that the RPM build takes an extra minute after adding more things to it. Whooda thunk it? Doing more takes longer. Wowzers.

"Can't we have an option to not build the bits I don't care about?" Mr. Whinger asks. Hey, I'm a software developer, not the fscking release wrangler. If it doesn't work the way you want it, fix it yourself, don't come whinging to me.

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LinkedIn proves not all social IPOs were bubbly

Blake St. Claire
Boffin

Re: missed an opportunity?

> maybe the people who wanted to link to you wanted to make contact to possibly do business?

Well, yes. In my case it's recruiters who want to link to me to tell me about a job they're trying to fill.

Maybe I don't get it, but I have this notion that I link to people I actually know and have actually worked with; I'm not going to link to a stranger. No doubt I could remove the link later––

Maybe they could tell me a teeny bit about the job first? Or I might bite if I was actually looking for a job, but I have a job, so if they want me to bite, they need to up the ante.

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Blake St. Claire

All I can say is: Don't be Facebook

> new services have been rolled out slowly to avoid antagonizing the user base.

For a while they seemed to be trying hard to be Facebook and that was beyond annoying.

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Electric cars stall in USA, Australia

Blake St. Claire
Thumb Down

Re: utter bollocks @Steve1

I'd guess that the typical small gas/petrol station on this side of pond serves 100-200 customers a day. A high volume station on a major highway maybe 1000+.

If every car was a hot swap battery electric, you'd need a warehouse for the batteries that are charging and charged. And I don't know, you'd probably need 2x or 3x batteries in stock to cover the time it takes to recharge.

I'll just wait for the ultra-caps, although it seems like not much effort is being put into developing those.

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Naked intruder cracks one off in Florida rampage drama

Blake St. Claire
Boffin

Re: Americans use such self-explanetory language ... once you learn the vocabulary

Yes, by all means, let's learn the vocabulary.

Assault and battery are legal terms with precise legal definitions (in this country). Assault is fear of harmful touching. Battery is harmful touching.

IOW you can be assaulted without being touched. Once the perp touches you, that's battery. Two different torts.

IANAL but at least I know this much.

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Happy birthday, Lisa: Apple's slow but heavy workhorse turns 30

Blake St. Claire
Boffin

Re: I loved this bit

> Macs have ALWAYS had second and even third mouse buttons; it's just that they're (even more

> confusingly) located on the keyboard. CTRL-Click = right click, option-click = ...

They were actually on the mouse if you could be bothered to buy one of the three button mice that were on the market. I saved for a long time to buy my first Mac, and almost immediately purchased a three button mouse for it.

I spent a few years in the late 80s and early 90s working for one of the NASA labs; one project I had some peripheral involvement with was building a system for the US military using Macs running A/UX (and DecStation 3100s running Ultrix.) The biggest user complaint was the one button mouse. I edumacated them about three button mice, they bought them, problem solved.

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Blake St. Claire
Boffin

> Yep, I've heard from engineers older than myself that they went with IBM compatibles because

> whilst they liked Apples, they just couldn't connect anything to them.

Yes, they went with PCs, and added cards for all the things the Macs had built-in.

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Blake St. Claire
Boffin

Re: Apple II and card slots

Er, the Apple III had slots. (Google it.)

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Canadians nab syrup rustlers after massive maple sap heist

Blake St. Claire

Re: Best application is drenched over three slices of Canadian bacon

Canadian Bacon

English Muffins

French Fries

At the ballpark: Hot Dogs and Cold Beer.

(And Unicorns)

See how nice we are, we give the Canadians, English, and French something to wonder about when they're bored.

But our bacon is fine, and the bacon I get in Canada is exactly like the bacon I get here. Canada is the 51st state after all. The only thing I've noticed that's different is there's a funny looking lady on the money and the mail boxes are red instead of blue.

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Wind, solar could provide 99.9% of ALL POWER by 2030

Blake St. Claire
Boffin

Transporting hydrogen?

I dunno, seems like a better long term solution would be to build the proposed HVDC connections between Europe and Africa.

Because otherwise the wackos that are afraid of hydrogen will run around yelling "remember the Hindenburg" and scuttle the whole thing.

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Blake St. Claire

Is this anything like fusion?

That's been perpetually 30 years away for the last 50 years.

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