316 posts • joined 28 Sep 2011
Repairs vs Depreciation
BMW, Mercedes, VAG? nice cars, but when they go (and they do!), it costs big bucks. Even some of their biggest advocates won't own them outside of the warranty period.
Not sure if in pure financial terms that's a sensible option. Buy a new car for say £16,000 and after a few years it's lost over half it's value, but buying a "pre-owned" model and you only pay a fraction and you might have an expensive repair bill but it's unlikely to equal the depreciation of a new car over the same duration. Personally given the choice of a new Ford Fester against a 5 or 6 year old Merc I know which I'd choose.
Re: Watch that watch! - Erratum
"Why much about with" should of course read "Why muck about with"
Sorry about that.
Re: Watch that watch!
Why much about with watches or perfume when all you need is, for example, a small piece of fairy cake:
Since every piece of matter in the universe is in someway affected by every other piece of matter in the universe, it is, in theory, possible to extrapolate the whole of creation - every galaxy, every sun, every planet, their orbits, their composition, and their economic and social history, from, say - one small piece of fairy cake.
(Douglas Adams - but you knew that)
So when are you going to charge it up if you wear it all night?
How do you know the battery life is too short?
Mainly because Apple said it was. "Charging every night" implies the charge will last for less than 48 hours and maybe less than 24 hours. Also Apple are reported to still be trying to extend battery life before product release.
I thought the strap would be an easy location for a bunch of tiny batteries but they haven't got around to
stealing innovating that one yet.
reasonable entry price make for a compelling new product
"Reasonable"? I thought it was rather pricey for what you get and the battery life is way too short.
But it will sell by the bucket load, even if only to the Appleistas.
Re: Oh suuuuuure, it STARTS with pretty pictures....
Gosh, with all those armed flying cameras the TV syndication rights would be worth a fortune.
Re: The Morgan Special
Like so many cars these days it looks great* from the front but the back looks dreadful.
* In this case when I say "great" I means it looks like proper Morgans which always have a certain charm.
The worry was that the dust would like Moon dust be charged and the vibration trick wouldn't work all that well with charged dust, also ultrasonic vibrations would put stress on the connections between the panels and the rover which could introduce a whole new selection of faults. So even if it could work the problems in hardening the rest of the vehicle to tolerate the vibrations make it not worth the effort. Probably.
As for wipers I suspect they didn't want to scratch the cell surfaces which is what wipers in a dry dusty environment will inevitably do.
Re: But do you trust it?
Working in IT, and to be fair being old, I have an inbuilt distrust of computers as I know that quite often, they are simply not logical.
Curious conclusion, I too work in IT and have since dinosaurs roamed the world, okay maybe not quite that long but you get the idea and I know computers are the epitome of logic seeing as that's what the underlying circuitry is based on, however I also know that the idiots who write the programs are far from logical and that's the problem which was summed up when the first pile of punched cards got shuffled: GIGO (Garbage In, Garbage Out).
So I fully trust computers to do exactly what their programming tells them to do but I have very little trust in the software running on them, even (especially) stuff I wrote.
The 900MHz option is probably only USA. Illegal in EU.
I refer the learned gentleman to the location of the proposed launch site.
Re: Value for money
Every pub in London is "Vulture Central", one just selects the nearest one. After 17 pints of "Gonad's Old Disgusting" they all look the same anyway.
Re: Mr Hawking – Over-rated - Big Bang Mythology
So complicated maths mean it must be correct ? of course I understand now
Good grief of course not, that's a really stupid thing to deduce from what I wrote.
Correlation does not imply causation.
There is obviously no link between the complexity and correctness or otherwise, why I mentioned it was because if you had seen the maths involved in the fine detail of the big bang theory and understood any of it, then "simple" is not a word you would ever contemplate using. (Unless you were perhaps a former Lucasian professor of mathematics or had studied maths to a similar level)
Re: Mr Hawking – Over-rated - Big Bang Mythology
The simplistic big bang theory is impossible to prove or disprove
simplistic? If you think it's simple then you plainly do not understand it and if you don't understand it you are in no position to pass judgement upon it.
Simple - sheeesh, he plainly hasn't seen the maths involved.
As for a simple correlation but not proof, the universe is expanding, if you run the clock backwards what do you get and when do you get it? (for one answer see what Hawking & Hubble had to say)
Front wheel drive.
The signal processing of the video wasn't in anything like real time: “Processing each video typically took 2 to 3 hours using MATLAB on a machine with two 3.46 GHz processors and 32 GB of RAM”
Without knowing the length of the videos in question that is a useless statistic. If each video was 1 to 2 hours long then that's quite good, if they were around 10 to 15 seconds then there's a lot of work to be done.
Good to see a nicely ambiguous heading from El Reg, there's no way this could ever reconstruct the audio from old silent movies but of course that claim is never made or explicitly implied, the oblique suggestion is plausibly deniable - well done chaps!
New Government Slogan
"Propagating inaccurate personal data since 2015"
I assume that citizens will be given the right to review and edit?
What d'ya mean "not a fucking chance"?
Well that's something to look forward to.
Re: The simple answer is usually the obvious one
You're all wrong. My extensive research in this area leads me to believe the screw is in a state of quantum flux.
The behaviour of screws and screwdrivers while superficially similar are actually different processes, the screw as has been frequently observed is driven by pure malice and will strive to hide itself in the most awkward place and if possible will cause pain when located and does employ quantum effects to relocate without passing through the intervening space.
Screwdrivers however employ dimensional gyroscopy where the turning action generates a force at right angles to the axis of rotation but as it is unable to rotate along either of the other 2 normal axes the force builds up until the screwdriver can not store any more energy and it moves at right angles to all the normal 3 dimensions which results in it jumping forward in time.
Re: The simple answer is usually the obvious one
Pah, it's not a vortex or invisibility as any fule kno, what screwdrivers exhibit is defocused temporal stability which means they can jump into the future so they reappear in the exact place you have already searched several times.
A bit before my time but I seem to recall the refrain was "Electricity too cheap to meter", that worked a treat didn't it.
There is no reason to be profligate just because we have high generating capacity, anyway replacing all generating with nuclear wouldn't work as nuclear is only really suitable for the baseline generation we'd still need near-line generators that can be rapidly brought on line to meed transient demand or to fill in when there's little wind, this can be done with hydro or gas both of which can go from idle to generating in a few minutes, to take coal or nuclear from idle to full capacity can take hours or even days.
Anyway generating with fusion is only 20 years away and that will really be a game changer, strangely fusion has been "20 years away" for the last 30 or so years but we'll get there eventually.
Re: More efficient when colder?
Considering that heat of chemical reactions expanding gasses is what makes internal combustion engines work
No it's not, the expansion due to heat does have a slight contribution but the main force is the creation of gasses by burning liquid fuel, gasses occupy a greater volume than the progenitor fuels and it's that change that drives the engine.
A steam engine does utilize the expansion but that's a phase change not just gasses expanding as they get hotter.
11 year old SLK 320 for 5% - Great car if you only need 2 seats and don't do a lot of miles, mpg is pretty dire but car is super comfy.
even tho it was well over 6 months past the 1 year warranty
As you are a member of the peerage I must assume you live in the UK in which case the statutory warranty is 2 years (the influence of those evil Europeans, dreadful isn't it) so they had to replace it.
For design faults there is no limit to the age where the responsibility lies although some common sense is employed here.
Strangely few US based suppliers make it obvious that there is a statutory 2 year warranty, tacitly encouraging consumers to believe in the US style 1 year warranty.
Re: As for testing...
Or somebody who handles playing cards coated with nitro-cellulose (admittedly a bit rare these days but still extant) or a heart patient with a bottle of "Nitrolingual" (a mixture of ethanol, a few micrograms of nitroglycerine and a soupçon of mint oil) in his or her pocket or any of a dozen other potential false positives.
Another breakthrough from the centre for establishing the obvious.
So a single country with a population of over 300 million produces more programming than 20 or so countries with an average population of around 30 million and having to cater to half a dozen different languages.
In other news: Fire is hot.
Re: to the pub
"it's clearly in the wrong order and not very latin really."
Yeah, sorry about that but I learnt what little latin I do have from the Asterix books which when I think about it might not have been the most accurate source.
Re: Disk is a lot faster.
"The contemplated disk scheme is a very conservative RAID 1/0, and is still massivly cheaper than tape."
Absolutely, if you have a few hundred tapes. However if you have a few hundred thousand tapes the economics change.
It does happen, I used to work for a well known telecommunications company in one of their many data centres and we had well over 1/4 million tapes spread between on and off site stores. There were also about 20 cassette loaded drives (12 tapes per cassette) and 7 sodding great robotic libraries (1 stand alone and 2 interlinked clusters of 3) each with lots of drives.Really we weren't as interested in speed as data integrity so we just made do with lots of duplication but that also did help the speed of data retrieval.
We never had any problems with "the logistics of the tape-handler robots getting very ugly very fast" in fact the robotic libraries were a treat to work with, just load and forget (every bloody day), better than the cassette drives that ask for the cassette of tapes to be changed every hour or so. Got to have something for the tape monkeys to do.
It is rather generous but I suspect it includes controllers, cases, power supplies, cabling, replacements, an area within a building to stick it all, air conditioning, electricity and labour spread over a 10 year time scale. When you include all the costs over several years it is not a hugely excessive estimate.
Considering just the purchase cost of the hardware is rather naive.
Re: Disk is a lot faster.
You do realize that tape can be striped as well, totally negating your argument?
Also you'd need some backup for the backup if you were spreading a file over 200 drives and that way madness lies.
“This [Flape] combination of technologies when used for long-term archiving can save IT departments as much as 300 per cent of their overall IT budget over the course of 10 years.”
I spent some time seeing if I could come up with an even stupider way of saying "could save up to 30% of the budget" but failed, well done those chaps, good work but terrible writing skills.
Learn from history, or not.
"Legislate in haste repent at leisure"
Except this bunch of maniacs wouldn't know how to repent.
ad astra et ad taverna
(To the stars and the pub)
An ACME product?
Bloody clever of course but the name! Sounds like something Wile E Coyote would buy from ACME.
That's All Folks....
Re: Patent This!
How about instead of one spinning screen, have three (or more) transparent screens in front of each other with gaps between them, have the background on the rear screen the foreground on the front screen and everything else on the middle screen. No idea how to prepare a suitable image, I suspect they'd need some of those computer thingies to work out what's what.
Not full blown 3D of course but would give an impression of depth and perspective without having to spin something up, mind you to make this work I think the screens need to be more transparent than these early iterations.
Possible scientific merit
The beer outside the payload bay simultaneously boiled and froze
Never occurred to me that beer would have a triple point, determining that could be of some interest, I wonder if I could get sponsorship to find the triple points of a number of ethanol based beverages - There must be a good reason to do this apart from the necessarily comprehensive before and after taste tests.
300 American Dollars which will probably translate to 300 real English pounds or 300 of those big chocolate coins used on mainland Europe.
I know Apple users are gullible, but are they that gullible?
Re: We need a bigger shovel
No, there may be slight technical difficulties with the time machine bit, the trick would be to drill down, you're bound to hit high pressure magma eventually, as soon as you hit magma run away (very fast) and then wait for a while, perhaps do a bit of guiding the lava with fire-hoses possibly even squirting liquid nitrogen for rapid cooling. After all, what could possibly go wrong?
It's good that Google have offered to pay. It will be appreciated by the people concerned and probably go towards patching a hole in the fire station roof.
Yes I was being rather mischievous and I'm certain that Google will pay the full amount.
I'm also sure their accountants will consider it a one-off extraordinary expense that can be written off 100% against tax so tell me, who is really paying for it?
"promised to recompense emergency services for their time and effort"
No too specific are they? "Recompense" could mean anything from paying the full cost of the exercise to sending the participants a token (tax deductible) gift of some kind, I hope those chaps (and chapesses of course) enjoy their free Google tee shirts.
Special Friday Google related bonus quiz:
Q: What's the difference between cynicism and pragmatism?
A: What do you mean "difference"?
Re: better still
Just what you need for a mountain top observatory, lot's of radioactive rocks to cut down on the heating & lighting bills.
Using a fuel cell to break down ethanol then using the power liberated to turn an electric motor is not significantly more efficient than burning the ethanol in an ICE to get the motive force also the materials needed to make fuel cells are expensive and get spoilt quite quickly so a fuel cell would probably have a far shorter life span than a ICE.
Heart patients will often carry nitrolingual spray, which is just harmless nitroglycerine dissolved in tasty ethanol with a hint of mint oil. This stuff burns like petrol and without the mint oil could be a possible petrol replacement.
Re: " + the surname Thorpe."
AFAIK the reasoning behind the name octothorpe was that it 'looked' like a village surrounded by 8 fields.
Frank Muir: Well that sounds so attractively plausible I'll have to say (shuffles around desk for card), Bluff!
Robert Robinson: And you Patrick?
Patrick Campbell: W,w,w,well in that era they'd p,p,p,probably wouldn't use the prefix octo, it'd be hectothorpe so I'll have to go along with Fr,r,rank on t,t,t,this one, Bluff.
And so on until the Beeb canned Call my Bluff.
Rubbish software for Nooks
I bought a Nook HD+ last year when they dropped the prices and it was probably one of the best purchases I've made for a long time however the software they provide to browse their bookstore program is total crap, you can search on broad categories such as "Science Fiction" and there are some further sub-divisions such as "Space Opera" and the results are shown 24 to a page with no way to sort or save your place so a list of 40,000 books has to be viewed sequentially in no discernible order.
I guarantee nobody has ever made it past page 10 of 1,600 and they wonder why they don't sell much, curiously their web site does have some "sort by" options.
Re: Lord Sumption
And his wife would be Con short for Connie, "Lady Con Sumption" has interesting connotations (Lord Notation is another one)
Life, don't talk to me about life!
Let's hope it has a hackable or open API, it would make a splendid GPP prototype to emulate Marvin however I think there was a slight spelling error, this thing has has a brain the size of a plant, and a really small one at that.
When a poacher is given a job as gamekeeper he is normally expected to give up the poaching, not in Russia it seems.
How will it pay the toll over the Severn Bridge
This is Google we're talking about, they already know everything about you so taking the toll directly from your bank account (plus 5% handling charge) would be trivial.
Of course the guided coin cannon might be tricky, alternatively arrangements with the toll operators shouldn't be impossible, but less entertaining.
I can see these becoming common for town and city use but for rural and motorway journeys I'm not convinced.
My main worry is of legal responsibility, say you have a "platoon" of 20 cars hurtling along and one somewhere in the middle has a catastrophic blow out, with the between car distances proposed I don't see how the following cars can avoid a mighty smash-up which would invariably spread into the other lanes, a huge disaster that insurers will not be keen to pay as with no driver in control ultimate responsibility is hard to apportion.
Re: Slap 'em with a small fine
What, per book sold?
explain what "Off-Axis" means in this context
Ejections from rotating bodies tend to occur from the poles like a pair of searchlight beams, on-axis means being in line with one of the poles and getting washed with whatever is sprayed out.
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