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* Posts by Chemist

1821 posts • joined 24 Mar 2010

Skype reverse-engineered and open sourced

Chemist
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Why by hand ?

Hi Lars,

Did you have no dissassembler in the 1970s ?. One of the first 'big' FORTH programs I wrote was a 6809 dissassembler which only took about 8K od source code including ~ 4K of data table. Given that the 6809 had anything up to ~6000 op codes ( it had multi-byte op codes for some addressing modes before anyone asks ) depending on how you looked at it I thought that was quite neat. Mind it ran a tad slowly but served it's purpose.

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Mac trojan evades Apple's brand new security fix

Chemist
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Just trying to emphasise the point...

that even switching desktop sessions is easy. It's still the same amount of typing - username & password

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Chemist
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Don't even have to log out.

Certainly on my OpenSUSE machines it's just switch user and then Ctrl-Alt-F7 or 8 ... to get back to the previous session

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Official: Apple to float iCloud on 6 June

Chemist
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Joke

I think...

iCon

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Linux 3.0 all about 'steady plodding progress'

Chemist
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KERNEL PANIC ??

I've been using Linux since 1.2 and I've not seen a Kernel Panic for years certainly since before Suse 5.0

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Win7 machines harder hit by infection as VXers change tactics

Chemist
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Re : "more immune"

I take your point however immunity does in fact vary, individuals immune response varies as does the amount of infectious agent they are subjected to. So generally a person can't be said to be just immune or susceptible but will form part of a distribution when the population as a whole is measured.

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Glass aeroplanes and iPads on the way, say boffins

Chemist
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Glass is one of the names used..

for these disorder states of matter. Amorphous could also be applied. Most non-crystalline materials are not transparent. One of the routine challenges most organic chemists face when synthesising new compounds is to convert an often mass of sticky gum or stiff glass into a crystalline material.

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Elite coder readies £15 programming gadget for schools

Chemist
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What !

Early 8-bit computers had 8K BASICs or smaller. My home-brew FORTH system will run a 4K FORTH system with ~8K RAM and 1.5MHz clock on a 6809.

8-bit PICS are quirky but plenty powerful enough and they are available in 0.1" pin packages that can still be easily hand-soldered.

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Chemist
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PICs

http://www.microchip.com/

Buy from Maplin or RS

Cheap, lots of tools. I mostly write assembler. I've even set one up to emulate a serial port on my homebrew 6809 FORTH machine

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DARPA, NASA look to spawn STARSHIP enterprise

Chemist
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Have you a reference ...

for this ?

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Is there anything to find on bin Laden's hard drive?

Chemist
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Try...

http://www.opencores.org

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Intel debuts '3D transistors' with 22nm chip recipe

Chemist
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And indeed I started electronics using them..

but getting much below 22mm proved rather difficult !

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Natty Narwahl: Ubuntu marine mammal not fully evolved

Chemist
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openSUSE

Well said - never a moment's problem (running on 6 quite different machines here)

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ET, phone back: Alien quest seeks earthling coders

Chemist
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"The sender may have given us a 24hour burst before pointing at another star"

and if we'd replied would they would have had to wait up to a gazillion years to receive it

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Lasers set to replace spark plugs in car engines

Chemist
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They all contain

benzene rings but as you say there's a wealth of variation in their properties and hence carcinogenicity.

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Top-secret US lab infiltrated by spear phishers – again

Chemist
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Certainly my experience at various research labs is ..

that Windows was used by the computer illiterate or for 'corporate ' use (HR, marketing, managers, e-mither ) the hard scientific stuff was done generally on Unix or increasingly Linux.

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Google pours millions into wind power

Chemist
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That'd be

~1.9 tonnes diesel -> ~ 5.8 tonnes CO2

1.9 tonnes ~ 2300L

~45 L /week of diesel equivalent to ~500 miles in my Touran

You may be certain that the average vehicle on USA roads is not achieving 50 mpg

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Whitehats pierce giant hole in Microsoft security shield

Chemist
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The point about it

was that an attempt on open source was caught quickly because it was open source.

FUD FUD FUD

What a load of apparently wishful thinking ( and paranoia)

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Chemist
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This was from 2003 for grief's sake !!

and then it was stomped on VERY quickly.

Is this the best you can do ?

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Ellison's Oracle washes hands of OpenOffice

Chemist
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LibreOffice can apparently handle a million

Agreed.2^20

I used to handle 6-7 million rows in JMP but at that time Excel could manage 64k. JMP ran on Linux as well.

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New tech lets you drink exhaust fumes

Chemist
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"But it's a little-known fact"

What !

Anyone sitting in a rush-hour traffic jam can see the water running out of the exhaust pipe of any recently started car.

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Fight global warming with Asimov-style Psychohistory - profs

Chemist
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Very roughly from "Foundation .."

"..threw a hyperspace relay and the ship died. For one of the characteristics of the Religion of Science is that its curses really work."

Sorry can't remember it too well and I don't have the books to hand

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Scientists eye curvaceous Earth gravity map

Chemist
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"people in ancient times"

Well the ancient Greeks knew it was sperical

Eratosthenes calculated the circumference of the earth without leaving Egypt in ~250BC

Any seafaring nation would know. Your dad's ship drops over the horizon and a couple of days later he's back - great - well it is if you like him. The Chinese theorists thought the Earth was flat but I bet their sailors had other ideas.

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Microsoft cofounder Allen unloads on Gates

Chemist
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unforgiving of bad code ?!

I had one of the original 8K BASICS ; it had a dreadful garbage collection bug that made string manipulations almost impossible..

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Artificial leaf produces electricity through photosynthesis

Chemist
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split water into Hydrogen and Oxygen does NOT require a catalyst

Electrolysis it doesn't require a catalyst but this isn't electrolysis.

If we're being pedantic a catalyst does NOT alter an equilibrium only the kinetics.

2H2 + O2 > 2H2O + energy : the equilibrium lies heavily to the right, a catalyst allows the reaction to proceed usefully at low temperatures rather than needing a match - the match will give rather a large increase in rate !!

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Chemist
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They've created a bloody artificial leaf!

NO !

This is *very* roughly the equivalent of the first stage of photosynthesis where light energy is captured and used to generate high-energy chemical species that are then used to power a complex series of chemical transformations that result in carbohydrates.

This is just 2H20 + light > 2H2 + 02 mediated ( i.e. kinetics accelerated) by a catalyst

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Chemist
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In electrochemical cells

These days, I think, a superacid conductive membrane ("nafion" ?) is used to separate the cathode/anode compartment so little or no mixing of hydrogen/oxygen. This would seem rather difficult to adapt as presumably the hydrogen/oxgen is being emitted all over the surface.

As for the ultimate feasibilty I and others have already commented on the max. output from a playing card sized device.

No, of course it's not photosynthesis

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Chemist
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"energy produces from the O2/H2 burns"

It can't produce any more than the incident solar energy which it's already been pointed out is max. ~~1 kW / square metre of card area unless some mirror system etc is used.

To the ones worrying about the amount of water I'd guess a very thin layer over the card is all that's required. The major problem looks to be the explosive potential of the hydrogen/oxygen gas mix

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Chemist
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Here's a simple calculation

Peak sunlight ~~ 1kW/m^2

Card is ~4e-3 m^2 ( I assume 4cm * 10cm - don't play cards )

*Assuming 100% efficiency*

That's an output of 4 W - turning it into hydrogen and then electricity can only lower the potential power.

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Windows Server pushed to the super limit

Chemist
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Read about Pittsburgh SC's Blacklight

Blacklight, the World’s Largest Coherent Shared-Memory Computing System, is Up and Running at the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center

http://www.psc.edu/publicinfo/news/2010/101110_Blacklight.php

Featuring 512 eight-core Intel Xeon 7500 (Nehalem) processors (4,096 cores) with 32 terabytes of memory, Blacklight is partitioned into two connected 16-terabyte coherent shared-memory systems — creating the two largest coherent shared-memory systems in the world.

Running 2 Linux images on 2048 cores each

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Fire-quenching electric forcefield backpack invented

Chemist
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Earliest ref. I can find (quickly) is from1985 ...

Physics and Astronomy

Combustion, Explosion, and Shock Waves

Volume 21, Number 4, 401-403, DOI: 10.1007/BF01463407

Effect of a constant electrical field on combustion of a propane-butane mixture with air

G. A. Gulyaev, G. A. Popkov and Yu. N. Shebeko

Some of the refs. are a lot older

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The Bayeux Tapestry archiving model

Chemist
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"I wonder what the equivalent of the BSOD is?"

Moths !

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Nokia launches new corporate font

Chemist
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Too much ..

time on their hands.

Too much money. Er, no,wait...

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Microsoft spends $7.5m on IP addresses

Chemist
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Only

if you live in them !

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Landlocked Bolivia seeks legal route to Pacific

Chemist
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Why don't they build ..

a tunnel ?

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Radioactive Tokyo tapwater HARMS BABIES ... if drunk for a year

Chemist
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Xenon is "inoffensive

TRUE

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Chemist
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"now turned into inoffensive Xenon"

Iodine-131 decays to Xenon-131 by beta decay.

Xe-131 is stable (i.e NON-radioactive) and the only hazard if concentrated is anesthesia or asphyxiation. At the truly minute amounts present in the water this is impossible.

What the hell the compounds of Xenon have to do with this ?

Any gas that isn't oxygen is an asphyxiant if it's not mixed with sufficient oxygen

Have opinions, but don't try and BS with 'facts' that aren't and science you clearly don't understand

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Fukushima's toxic legacy: Ignorance and fear

Chemist
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" one tends to get a breakdown............ hydrogen and oxygen"

NO! Not again ! One does not !

Water reacting with hot zirconium of the fuel rod assemblies to generate hydrogen

The thermodynamics of water are almost totally in the direction of water unless the temperatures are VERY high.

Think - what does a mixture of hydrogen and oxygen do when you apply a match

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Fukushima: Situation improving all the time

Chemist
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Indeed drivel

I've posted this elsewhere but after Chernobyl the pharmaceutical research site I worked at in NW England ( >2000 km) from Chernobyl, spotted the radiation very quickly as it was concentrated on the ventilation filters. The news got around VERY quickly.

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Chemist
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I had to correct them recently

They had a post on the Japan feed that actually, to anyone with even half a brain, was about evacuating Brits from Bahrain !

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Hadron Collider 'could act as telephone for talking to the past'

Chemist
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"because seen from outside the universe"

I take my hat off to you - what a hitchhiker !

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The 64-bit question

Chemist
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Standard out-of-the-box on OpenSUSE

firefox: ELF 64-bit LSB executable, x86-64,

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Chemist
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Re : True

Unless you want to run the moon landing game - I think that took almost all ( maybe 248 bytes ?)

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Fukushima situation as of Wednesday

Chemist
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That seems highly suspect

You can't keep radiation levels a secret !

All sorts of people will be measuring, near and far. After Chernobyl, for example, the pharmaceutical research site I worked at in England ( >2000km away) spotted the abnormal levels very quickly because they were concentrated on ventilation filters. It's so easy to detect extremely low levels of ionizing radiation

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Fukushima is a triumph for nuke power: Build more reactors now!

Chemist
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For the last time !!

"Steam which has been superheated as in a reactor core can break up into hydrogen and oxygen"

NO IT CAN'T

People have been going 2H20 > O2 +2H2

The equilibrium for this reaction lies HEAVILY to the left at reasonable temperatures

Water only dissociates to 3% hydrogen 97 % water at 2000 C . The water has to react with something to generate significant amounts of hydrogen This would seem to be zirconium in the fuel rod casings by all accounts

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Threat to third Fukushima nuke reactor

Chemist
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why they overheated? → #

The primary reaction has shutdown but highly radioactive waste products with very short-half-lives generate a considerable amount of heat as they decay. Without cooling, depending on the reactor design this can lead to overheating and potentially melting

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Chemist
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It's not just dissocation of water.

The equilibrium even at 2000 C is ~3% hydrogen 97 % water. Catalysts don't affect equilibria only rate. The hydrogen is being produced in a chemical reaction - probably zirconium fuel rod components reacting at high temperatures with water/steam

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openSUSE 11.4 rocks despite missing GNOME

Chemist
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Ditto

Been running it since the early SuSe distros. Rock solid - running on 6 machines at the moment on 11.2

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Second explosion rocks Japanese nuke plant

Chemist
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Re : Garbage? #

He's quite correct water doesn't break down appreciably even at 2000 C. Even then it's in equilibrium with only a small percentage of free hydrogen/oxygen.

The only way of generating sig. free hydrogen is to react the water with some material such as zirconium as others have mentioned

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