* Posts by Chemist

2071 posts • joined 24 Mar 2010

Gates: Renewable energy can't do the job. Gov should switch green subsidies into R&D

Chemist
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Re: Current Renewables are a Band-Aid

"That's also some claim when Germany is in such tight electrical straits they've had to buy a sizable chunk of their electricity from France lately."

I've mentioned here before that a comprehensive analysis of Germany's electricity stats (2014) can be found at :

http://www.ise.fraunhofer.de/en/downloads-englisch/pdf-files-englisch/data-nivc-/electricity-production-from-solar-and-wind-in-germany-2014.pdf

Page 6 ;- first 11 months of 2014 total generated electricity ~470 TWh

46% coal, 9% wind, 7% solar,

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This whopping 16-bit computer processor is being built by hand, transistor by transistor

Chemist
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Re: Completely and utterly bonkers

"None of which are actually functioning today"

AFAIK the replica of the Manchester 'Baby' is around and ran in 1998. I was taught physics by a chapvwho worked on the original and had a photo of himself, stripped to the waist, working in basement surrounded by racking

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Cambridge’s HPC-as-a-service for boffins, big and small

Chemist
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" "throwing away" data pre-determined as "uninteresting" for a long while yet. Probably forever"

Probably !. It'd be nice to know how much this huge data stream has already been processed (FPGAs, heuristics etc) at the experiment . Anyone know ?

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

Chemist
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Re: Even if it doesn't pay.

"As I see it, the good of systemd is that I can reboot in a small number of seconds, and the bad is that I seem to have to do it at least ten times as often, for something like a wash"

Using OpenSUSE I reboot hardly ever and only switch off when I'm traveling. Updates arrive regularly and systemd seems to restart any daemons that have been updated.

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Graphene sheaths could boost processor signal speeds by 30 per cent

Chemist
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Re: Contradiction?

"Moving on, I'm sure you can improve on my answer, if you care to. If the structural strength of graphene is currently realisable (no pun intended), why not ditch the copper entirely and go with a graphene conductor?"

The simple answer is that I don't know

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Chemist
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Re: Contradiction?

"Perhaps because graphene is one atom thick and has no structural strength?"

Perhaps you'd like to reconsider that rash statement. Just Google it

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Chemist
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Re: Contradiction? @ chemist

"f you consider the graphene not as a sheet of carbon, but two layers of hydrogen stabilised by a lattice of carbon + electron soup ( extremely simplified, of course)."

"To migrate to the silicon any copper atom would have to react with the H of the graphene first.."

Sorry I should have noticed this sooner but I've been busy today. I'm afraid you are under a misapprehension - graphene doesn't have any hydrogen attached to it - it's pure carbon sp2 hybridized. so planar like benzene but with all bonds carbon-carbon

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Chemist
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Re: Contradiction? @ chemist

"So this is Graphene Oxide ..."

However graphene oxide != graphene

In any case the water permeability seems to be along the axis of pairs o sheets

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Chemist
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Re: Contradiction? @ chemist

"It would work that way if you consider the graphene not as a sheet of carbon, but two layers of hydrogen stabilised by a lattice of carbon + electron soup ( extremely simplified, of course)."

Not sure the point you are making - It's known that a monolayer of graphene is an impermeable barrier under normal conditions ( I have a feeling that protons can tunnel through ) So as I stated copper is not going to be able to diffuse into the silicon

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Chemist
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Re: Contradiction?

"and an insulator"

AFAIK the nitride layer there as an insulator and to stop the copper migrating into the silicon and affecting its performance - graphene will presumably do the same (and conduct electrons along the sheet"

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Chancellor Merkel 'was patient zero' in German govt network hack

Chemist
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Re: Hooooooooooowl...

"You have to have good math capability and know your subject but computers are only needed for research"

Not my area exactly but ...You know, presumably, that solutions of the wave equation for anything other than the hydrogen molecule that approximations methods have to be used - that means computers, for anything rather larger , it means BIG computers

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Chemist
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Re: Hooooooooooowl...

"Did that even exist when she graduated in the DDR? My doubts cannot be allayed..."

Shows more ignorance - her doctorate was in mid-80s - quantum chemistry had been around since ~1920s.

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Microsoft to Linux users: Explain yourself

Chemist
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Re: A bit late, Microsoft

"it's silly to take an attitude of refusing to look at new stuff because you're familiar with the old."

Yet time & time again we're told here that there is no point in companies moving to Linux/LibreOffice or whatever due to the users inability to adapt/learn ( even though the same users seem to have moved to Android/iPhone etc without any forcing)

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A 16 Petaflop Cray: The key to fantastic summer barbecues

Chemist
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Re: Can anyone clarify?

"After all, if it is raining where you are, it is certainly raining; if not, not. It is a binary choice, no probabilities needed."

If it's raining where you are you don't need a weather forecast !!!

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Chemist
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Re: 2 million lines of FORTRAN code

"but I found that FORTRAN code actually ran faster than it's similarly written C equivalent."

I've mostly written my scientific software in C but one of the major points in favour of Fortran seems to be the masses of thoroughly debugged routines/libraries (including source) available for a vast range of topics

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MONSTER GALAXY spotted hiding behind IMMENSE BLACK HOLE

Chemist
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"I would guess that any temporal effect there might be on a photon when it zips past a 100,000ly galaxy..."

AFAIK photons don't experience time. It's all now for photons - emitted and absorbed at the same instant even if billions of light years separate emitter and absorber. Google it. Strange place this universe.

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What's broken in this week's build of Windows 10? Installing it, for one

Chemist
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Re: Release ring or Strange Attractor?

"swirl non-deterministically "

Whilst I agree with your sentiment AFAIK chaos (theory) is deterministic in that you can write the equations, however the system that the equations describe is so sensitive to initial conditions that it doesn't matter and appears to be random or pseudo-random very quickly

See animation : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chaos_theory

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Free Windows 10 upgrades from Microsoft will FLATTEN PC sales

Chemist
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Re: @Steve Davies 3 - Correct for me.

"Microsoft is not worried by users switching to *nix/*BSD,they solved this a long time ago with UEFI Secureboot. "

Eh? I'm Linux to the the core but just telling lies about MS doesn't advance your argument one little bit

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Blackhat hack trick wallops popular routers

Chemist
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Re: Checking?

"it shows the DNS addresses at the bottom."

In many cases it will just point to the router . I usually embed my normal DNS server addresses in the nm settings for my access point.

At the moment I'm still looking for a reasonably simple explanation of how this exploit works and indeed how it is triggered.

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EXT4 filesystem can EAT ALL YOUR DATA

Chemist
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"Often when I try to use multi-threaded code that has high memory usage the entire Linux OS will crash. "

Strange, even 10+ years ago using a dual xeon Dell workstation with the quite large memory of 2GB ( for the time) we ran multithreaded protein modelling software under RedHat for DAYS at ~100% CPU without any probs.

And now my 8GB 4(8) core i7 laptop (OpenSUSE13.1) running multithreaded software can render/convert video running at ~90% CPU without issue.

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You've come a long way, Inkscape: Open-source Illustrator sneaks up

Chemist
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Re: open source video editor

"What about Kdenlive (KDE non-linear video editor)?"

I've used it for years, since ~2012 I've used it for 1080/50p video and i find it excellent (esp. for free) - I've not used anything except Linux for years so I can't comment on Windows/Mac as hardware is now so much faster tthan when I used editors on Windows for SD video. I found kdenlive used to crash before ~2012 but that is now a thing of the past. I think it's one of the best for Linux and easier than Cinelerra to pickup.

I use inkscape for laying out PCB (all manually) but I find its line width and spacing accuracy first rate certainly SOIC, and even TQFP are possible just using laser toner to copper transfers.

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It’s Adobe’s Creative Cloud TITSUP birthday. Ease the pain with its RGB-wrangling rivals

Chemist
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Re: Darktable

"How reliable is it nowadays? "

I'm using Darktable 1.4.2 under OpeSUSE 13.1/13.2 and I've never had any problem with crashing and I processes a lot of my RAWs using it (all Canon 550D/6D). I've been using it for > 1year now.

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Chemist
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Re: most changes you make will be irreversible/lack of non destructive editing,

Thanks for the clarification - I was misled by "most changes you make will be irreversible"

as clearly they are not. The process of altering a step out of a pipeline of changes that are eventually rendered is in fact what I'm used to with Darktable.

As I mention above I don't us Gimp much but have been grateful for the undo history on many occasions - although in any case, of course, I'd never overwrite an original image

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Chemist
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most changes you make will be irreversible/lack of non destructive editing,

Not sure what is meant by this - Gimp lets you role back for a considerable number of changes (Edit - Undo History ) That said I don't use it much except for the odd quick job.

That's 'cos I use Darktable which is awesome as you say and covers virtually all my photo needs. Especially good is its profiles for various DSLR cameras for RAW processing.

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World of the strange: There will be NINE KINDS of Windows 10

Chemist
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Re: "and they're losing faith.'

"Linux even has Firefox and VLC installed by default,"

? The Linux I've been using has had Firefox by default since ?? 10+years ago

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Building the Internet of Things with Raspberry Pi et al, DIY-style

Chemist
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Re: Notihg in the review about the actual internet

"you establish your own fixed IP so you can talk to your home remotely. And in either case, you're likely subject to any hacker with a backdoor into either, which are numerous."

There is another option I use when I'm feeling paranoid. I have a few PIC microcontrollers, run by a server program on my Linux fileserver. I've set up a system whereby a cron job regularly reads a text file on my website and sets-up the PICs accordingly. A futher cron job reads any inputs from the PICs and writes out to the website. This being a totally passive system means I don't have to ssh in to home just to change a few things.

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Tesla's battery put in the shade by current and cheaper kit

Chemist
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"And the other 38% comes from"

Well if you can't be a***d to read the ref !

Nuclear, gas, biomass, hydro. ( I've got a German neighbour here in Switzerland and he often spouts off about how much cleaner German electricity production is " Mostly wind and solar" )

Greek bonds might well be biomass

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Chemist
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Suggest you read :

http://www.ise.fraunhofer.de/en/downloads-englisch/pdf-files-englisch/data-nivc-/electricity-production-from-solar-and-wind-in-germany-2014.pdf

Page 6 ;- first 11 months of 2014 total generated electricity ~470 TWh

46% coal, 9% wind, 7% solar,

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Windows 10 bombshell: Microsoft to KILL OFF Patch Tuesday

Chemist
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"Of course you haven't noticed a change in behaviour in your distro, you already have that "feature""

As I've been using Linux from the mid-90s I'd notice especially as I run 6 machines + several VM. Only reboots for kernel updates - changes to the desktop environment occasionally request logout/in

Can we have some comments from other users about this

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Chemist
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"With the advent of systemd, they'll all be rebooting at the drop of a hat."

? - care to explain. I've been using a systemd distro for quite a time and requirement to reboot doesn't seem to have changed

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2016 might just be the year of Linux on the (virtual) desktop

Chemist
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Re: your software is undemanding or can't utilise 8 cores.

It's not just parallelisable applications but how many processes you want to run. I'm used to running many cpu-intensive programs at the same time whilst doing lots of other stuff whilst they get on with it.

"Outside rendering, are there many other widely used parallelisable applications?"

Plenty of scientific ones, but even for my usage when travelling I use scripts to further process sets of directories of jpgs(that's 100s of files in each, 5k*3k ) (scaling/sharpening) to produce sets that match the native resolution of various devices they are going to be viewed on. Having 4-8 copies of that code running can give a laptop a good work-out. I also do the same with video using ffmpeg to convert 1080/50p to 720p again for display purposes, and during this time I still want to write, email, upload, browse, and process RAW DSLR images, build panoramas etc. That's why I bought an i7 with 8GB. I could have done the rest with my old Celeron 1GB laptop ( I admit the screen hinge is glued with Araldite and possibly living on borrowed time), but when 1 minute of video needed 30 mins of rendering it was too slow.

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Chemist
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"and to be honest the needle hardly shifts off zero"

If that's the case then your software is undemanding or can't utilise 8 cores.Playing 1080/50p files takes ~5-10% but rendering the final edits in hi-quality H264 takes ~85% - if I want the job done as quickly as possible

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Chemist
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Re: Ah, but.

"and portability requirement large."

I've tended to prefer desktops for speed, ease of fixing, custom building and upgrading but I travel a lot and processing (on the road) RAW photos and particularly 1080/50p video editing/rendering requires quite a lot of muscle. My preferred video editing software will wind all 8 cores up to ~85% utilisation during rendering

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Chemist
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Re: Ah, but.

"You built your own laptop ? Impressive."

I too always build desktops - laptops are more of a problem but a number of smaller UK sellers now sell their ranges without OSs and charge extra for Windows. The 8GB i7 I'm writing this on is one such, nice 1920x080 display and OpenSUSE 13.1 installed without a glitch

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Microsoft: Profit DECIMATED because you people aren't buying PCs

Chemist
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Re: I think the real "news" here

"Are MS an enterprise-oriented outfit ? Or a consumer-oriented outfit ?"

They have always been a MS-oriented outfit. Nothing wrong with that in a business but some people treat them like a religion

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Prostrate yourself before the GNU, commands Indian DEITY

Chemist
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Re: Would The Reg please stop

"If you want to run a successful commercial business, you need a professional partner who will have your back and ensure there are no potential legal threats. "

?

Do you mean "will have the shirt off your back" ?

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TOP500 Supers make boffins more prolific

Chemist
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Re: Chemists are...

"But you will probably find that programs written by chemists to solve chemical ...."

In science it's often the case. Trying to explain some arcane point with lots of caveats to a programmer without a serious grounding in the topic can be frustrating, and usually leads to a poor outcome. Not the programmer's fault of course just difficult to comunicate between the worlds.

Incidently whilst I agree that many scientists can be poor programmers two of the best coders I've every worked with were originally chemists.

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BIG DATA wizards: LEARN from CERN, not the F500

Chemist
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Re: I wonder...

"subterranean passport control at the four points it crosses the French-Swiss border?"

Schengen in a word. Haven't shown a passport at the Swiss border with anywhere for years.

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Boffins FOAMING over a Nickel's worth of hydrogen

Chemist
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Re: "unless there's some ability to run at lower effective electrode voltage"

The point is that the thermodynamics can never be better than ~300kJ/mole. And that might be at low throughput - that energy has to be supplied one way or another. Now has this catayst made significnt progress towards this ? i.e. allowing higher throughput whilst reducing the overpotential.

(Being able to reduce the cell voltage somewhat may be benificial but the waste heat thus generated will lower the electrical energy needed for the reaction. To reach ~100% efficiency the cell voltage needs to be reduced to ~~1.5v (at realistic throughputs .which is the issue as always with thermodynamics)

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Chemist
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Catalysts, as I'm sure you know, increase the rate of reactions but don't alter the thermodynamics. I'm not sure how this catalyst is supposed to reduce the power required unless there's some ability to run at lower effective electrode voltage. A lot of the power in electrolysis is lost in the 'resistance' of the electrolyte between the electrodes. As you also need a conductive barrier to seperate the hydrogen from the oxygen generated then that may constitute an extra point of loss.

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BBC: We'll give FREE subpar-Raspberry-Pis to a million Brit schoolkids

Chemist
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Re: bbc pi is 8bit amtelmega 32u4

" I started programming on a Z80 with 1K RAM. Kids today. Don’t know that they’re born!"

(Obligatory 4 Yorkshiremen moment) -- you were LUCKY- I started on a SC/MP Mk14 with 256 bytes and a hex keypad/calculator display AND NO STACK. Raw Machine-code too

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In assault on American values, Lockheed BLASTS PICKUP with RAYGUN

Chemist
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Re: @Chemist (again)

"I suspect that you (perhaps like I would have done before I worked with high explosives) looked at the numbers inferred by my post and thought that they could not possibly be correct -"

Sorry no, I'm quite happy with small energy, large power in short time. In a more relevant example for The Reg - a few Joules, giving a powerful flash of short duration in a flash tube.

My gripe was just about the use of 'energy' -( I'd just heard an idiot on radio news totally mixing up power and energy )

"Hence your incorrect assumption that you would need a RPG with a 20 tonne charge."

That was just to illustrate the absurdity of - "a miilion times the energy". Sounds like ths was a cross-purpose problem between us

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Chemist
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Re: @Chemist

I admit in my first reply to your original post I should have really just pointed out that the use of 'energy' instead of 'power' was the problem I had with it.

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Chemist
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Re: @Chemist

"a RPG delivers very roughly a million times that amount of energy"

Your workings still don't show that !

It mght well deliver a million times the power over the tiny timescale of a detnation but by your own calculations it still only delivers ~ 1MJ of energy. I'm not disputing the fact that a RPG will make a big hole in things ( and indeed in my lab days I've had very small amounts of material do suprising damage)

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Chemist
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Re: @beast666

"a RPG delivers very roughly a million times that amount of energy"

kW is a unit of power not energy.

If you meant 90 kJ are you seriously suggesting that a RPG delivers 90E9 J ? For comparison TNT has an explosive yield of ~4 MJ/kg.

Please show your workings ! (90E9 J is the rough yield from > 20 tonnes of TNT) That's some RPG. Shoulder launched ?

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And the buggiest OS provider award goes to ... APPLE?

Chemist
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Re: OSX and Linux

"A days work for me is about $1000. Go figure."

Said the AC who could claim anything !

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Linux kernel dev has gone well and truly corporate – report

Chemist
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Re: Snowballing

"Which is a bit annoying when you have a huge kernel and modules to use a few % of the code."

Except that you don't !

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Chemist
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Re: Snowballing

"hint: Monolithic does not mean "not made with modules"

This all semantics - the point is the Linux kernel does NOT have to have compiled-in drivers - most distro run with loadable modules that are selected at boot or on hot-plug. On the other hand if you want a custom kernel with a limited set and with them optionally compiled in then you can have that as well.

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