Have you noticed that every time NASA's budget is up for review, one or other Voyager enters a new definition of interstellar space?
742 posts • joined 28 Sep 2007
Re: No wheel is one thing
It might look like when Airbus ditched the traditional yoke for the sidestick. I think Tesla might seize this moment.
Ford, Mercedes, Saab and Honda have all experimented with joystick-controlled cars. All gave up: you simply cannot achieve the precision required, or the haptic feedback needed, with a stick. Although yokes were traditional on modern airliners, sticks work fine on light aircraft - and remember that an Airbus is flying itself for perhaps 95% of the time.
On the seventh anniversary of Steve Jobs' death, we give you 7 times he served humanity and acted as an example to others
You bitches. I love you.
Meanwhile, religion is worrying about same sex couples getting married.
Re: 5 minute recharge time
It's also impossible to charge duty on electricity used to drive a car without charging duty on other electricity.
'Course it's possible. Duty is charged on diesel-is-diesel for cars but not for tractors. Duty is charged on LPG-is-LPG for cars but not for cooking. All electric cars know how much energy has been put into them.
Re: Maximum Hubris
But the power to weight ratio of the latest batteries isn't that much greater than for good old lead acid batteries
Modern li-ion batteries manage about ten times the energy density (in J/kg) of lead-acid.
Re: 5 minute recharge time
And to travel that 250 miles has cost you a lot less than if you had used a petrol engined car.
In refuelling charges, maybe. But when you take fixed costs into account, the electric car is vastly more expensive. A couple of years ago the one Tesla driver I know - he's a complete arsehole - had a go at me for wasting money filling up my old Golf with diesel. Why on earth didn't people save money by going electric, he asked, leaning against his £100k roadster ...
Re: Maximum Hubris
The vast majority of journeys are much less than 300 miles, so the limit is really whatever people consider the acceptable time for refuelling.
The vast majority of journeys are made with one or possibly two people on board, yet hardly anyone (statistically) buys two seater cars.
Re: Saving Private Lion
Tragically, when the time came, Britain was unable to rescue Poland either from the Nazis or the Soviet Union. I'm still surprised they've forgiven us.
Britain was never particularly concerned with Poland. It was more concerned that Germany would interfere with Briain's ability to keep half the world under military subjugation.
FlyBe's online check-in system is dead as well. Lotsa cross people queuing at airports.
Re: So, where's the fine from the ICO?
And in this case there doesn't seem to have been any breach. They may have left the front door on the latch, but their is no evidence that anybody tried it and walked in.
When everything is going wrong in one part of the business ("We can't make cars") announce something else for the fanboiz to slaver over ("Look! A Truck!"). In this case he's about to have his arse handed to him on a plate by the libel courts so of course he has found a passenger for a rocket which hasn't even been designed yet, let alone tested and certified for human flight.
Remember that that the NHS has two categories of medical staff:
(1) Those too stupid to be doctors and
(2) Those too arrogant to be anything else
and that it's the least competent from both these groups who move into NHS management.
I already have a UK state-issued ID card. Mind you, I live in Scotland.
I have Lubuntu running quite nicely on stuff almost as old as that. The killer is not the OS, though, it's the apps. Chrome/Chromium munch around 500MB for the first tab and 200MB per tab after that. Firefox used to be even worse but has improved enormously recently.
Re: gender-neutral languages
There is no concept of "gender" in Japanese. Obviously it has words for "man", "girl" and soon, but nouns and pronouns do not have grammatical gender and the word for "driver" or "bookseller" is the same whether the person in question is male, female or one of those strange things you find in universities these days.
Re: What's the problem here?
To refer to an unknown person: for ages. "Would they owner of car registration number AA123AAA please go to the car park as they have left their lights on." "I saw someone on the hilltop and waved to them but they didn't wave back"
To refer to a known individual, much more recently: "Jo can't afford a Goth costume to annoy their parents with, so they are identifying as non-binary for a bit."
OK, so it seems that as long as it knows an object is a shoe, and as long as that shoe has a tongue, and as long as it can spend twenty minutes working out where the tongue is, it can pick up the shoe by the tongue. I'm astounded and I welcome our new robot overlords.
Anyone else thinking of the roman centurion in "Asterix the Gaul" who thinks he has drunk magic potion and shouts "I am a superman" when, after trying progressively smaller objects, he manages to pick up a fist-sized stone?
Re: Upsetting non-techies can be hard
I heard of a newish and innocent member at Booker Gliding Club who was persuaded that, when he borrowed a club glider for a competition, he should sandpaper the leading edges to improve boundary layer retention. He had to pay the £20k refinishing bill himself.
I am pretty sure that however Elon Musk ends up, it will make Howard Hughes' final years seem sane and rational.
Neutron star crash in a galaxy far, far... far away spews 'faster than light' radio signal jets at Earth
Don't radio waves always move at the speed of light? I'm aware the local speed of light is variable but would the radio waves not always move at that local c?
EM radiation, whether light or radio, moves at c / square root of (relative permittivity x relative permeability). However, relative permittivity in particular can be frequency dependent in ionised systems, so you end up with different frequencies travelling at different speeds, in what is called a dispersive medium.
Re: Relativity - Great! But what about String Theory, Dark Matter and Dark Energy?
Dark matter is theorised to exist because it explains certain observations.
But it is ONLY hypothesised to exist as an explanation for these observations, What is dark matter? The stuff which explains the rate of expansion of the universe. What explains the rate of expansion of the universe? Dark matter. You could insert "sky pixies" or "demonic possession" and have a similarly precise and circular argument.
Scientists, on the other hand, know that what they do know is pretty solid ...
They always do, when approaching a dead end. That's what the term "paradigm shift" refers to - it's the point when science realises that what it thought was "pretty solid" was actually pretty dodgy.
It's pretty clear that particle physics is in deep doo-doo at the moment, and all the attempts to explain away problems with dark energy, dark matter and a host of exotic new particles looks very much like the desperate attempts to fix Ptolomeic cosmology with epicycles. Of course epicycles were really just Fourier series in disguise, but a fundamental change was needed to make everything work.
I strongly suspect that in a hundred years "dark matter" will be filed alongside "phologiston" and "aether".
Re: Just a side note
Utter nonsense. If it has any measurable effects, it can be studied and figured out. Throwing up your hands and deciding it's too difficult is for religion and philosophy, not science.
Only if you assume that the human brain is capable of understanding everything. That's a very anthropocentric view - it's entirely possible that some things will just turn out to be too hard. A bit like trying to teach string theory to a chimpanzee.
Re: Just a side note
Antimatter is just an atom, whose core contains the electrons while the orbits are filled with protons - in "normal" matter it is the other way around.
Antimatter has a nucleus comprising antiprotons and antineutrons, with positrons (aka antielectrons) orbiting it.
Re: what's the problem?
TSB is shite. But so are all the other banks.
I have a German (Sparkasse) account. Internet banking with them is easy: the interface is intuitive and far more powerful than anything I've seen from UK banks. The Co-Op, for example, has internet banking which can only store six months' worth of statements.
You wait forever to get something which isn't what you expected and which doesn't work anyway. What could be a more authentic Sinclair experience?
He'd used his football team plus a number as a password. I had guessed that he'd used the year his football club was founded at the end.
The fault was not his. The fault was having a password policy which could be fully complied with in a way which left his password easily guessable.
Their corporate IT folks had a very strict password policy. They required a password change every 30 days, unique passwords, and over 10 characters. What this did however, is to create an environment where no one could remember their passwords.
I know an Oxford college which decided to boost security by having a different 4-digit access code for every door into the buildings, instead of one for all doors as previously. This meant that an average student needed to know codes for their staircase, both their tutors' staircases, the common room, the laundry, the library and as many staircases as they had friends on. The result was inevitable: within two days every lock had its code written beside it, usually in something indelible. They went back to one-code-for-all after three days.
Re: Over Your Head
As a sysadmin you don't need to make users care. Users should be following the policy, and the policy should have the backing of senior management. Anything else is doomed to failure.
And the policy should be sane. The danger is that some paranoid IT dweeb comes up with rules so arcane and so irritating to users that the begin to take a perverse delight in thwarting them. The toughest policy in the world is no good if it leads to passwords on post-it notes by screens.
It wouldn't be Linux if it wasn't inconsistent and interminable bickering over licensing terms and conditions.
At last, it's the Year of Linux On The Desktop.
That goes for almost all science fiction writers, though. They get an idea but run out of plot very quickly so they write short stories. Very occasionally, if they are feeling exceptionally bold, a "novella" (Spanish for "padded-out short story") which is almost unknown as a form in any other sphere of writing.
But then, they know their audience. Who wants plot or characterisation when you can get the hang of an idea in a few pages?
I thought Crapita was on the point of following Carillion down the tubes. With luck, all we have to do is wait, then when the euphoria is over, start shorting Serco.
Re: The government position:
You want to solve the problems? Put an IT guy in charge of the IT projects, not a minister
IT guys have proved utterly incapable of delivering this project. Why on earth should they be able to manage it as well?
Re: The government position:
The degree of incompetence demonstrated by the U.K. Govt. in its management of the U.C. project is astounding. It's a bizarre aspect of reality that those same people consider themselves capable of managing the country.
What about the degree of incompetence demonstrated by the IT professionals (sic) who are being paid by the barrowload to implement the project?
I have a £60 Medion (=Lenovo) from Aldi. It has been working very nicely for 3.5 years and shows no signs of giving up. I'm buggered if I can see any reason to spend fifteen times as much on the latest shiny from Apple or Samsung.
Economists can't predict economies. Why on earth would we trust them to predict technologies?
A lot of people backed this was because:
a) Sir Clive Sinclair is linked to it.
And they are certainly getting an authentic Sinclair experience out of it, so what's the beef?
It's a good job I didn't know this, because if I had known it I might not have been able to made several successful purchases with my Visa card on Friday (chip-and-pin, contactless and Amazon) as well as withdraw cash.
"The real NIPS website is nips.cc. Please do not visit nips2018.org."
Why the hell would organisers of a reputable conference use such a fake sounding web address?
Re: Rejected one year moratorium oddly similar to 12 months they say they need to devise a new model
A whois search on my .uk domains now shows that they are registered by an individual, it doesn't give my name, and the only contact details are for the registrar.
Mine say "Data validation: Nominet was able to match the registrant's name and address against a 3rd party data source on 10-Dec-2012". There is nothing about whether I am an individual, corporation or super-intelligent shade of the colour blue.
Re: balanced fact based reporting please
To be honest, sometimes I don't even see the need for the employer to know... "I'm having an operation" is perfectly acceptable. You don't need to know if that's a vasectomy, a circumcision, a hysterectomy or anything else unless that person chooses to tell you. But you certainly shouldn't be advertising whatever it is (even if the person in question is doing so themselves).
Many employers only give sick leave for illness, and using it for elective vasectomy, circumcision, or hysterectomy would be gross misconduct.
Re: Spot on
What makes you so sure that a "real email account" isn't a gmail one? I have several user@domain accounts which use gmail.
This sort of tantrum by Musk isn't new. Remember when a New York journalist borrowed a Model S and reported range problems, after being advised by a Tesla customer service advisor to warm the batteries with a quick charge before setting of in freezing conditions? Musk threw a total eppy, ranted about "big oil shills" and sacked the customer service advisor.
Re: Don't forget critics..
I mean... take the idea for the rocket which can also land itself: there was already an actual working concept around in the 90's.
Indeed, and there is a huge opportunity cost to retaining enough fuel to land the first stages. NASA and the Russkis aren't stupid - they could and would have done it years ago if it made economic sense.
Re: Can't have it both ways, guys.
You can't say "[all] journalists do [x,y,z]" and follow that with "the media is not a coherent whole".
Why not? Staff on the Guardian and the Mail work in very similar way but produce completely different results.
Re: A different problem
Braking distance is more seriously affected by how much G you can subject the user to than anything else. You can make the car stop on a sixpence, it'll just break your neck and make you unconscious in your burning vehicle.
The maximum deceleration to which you can safely subject a sitting human is around 9G - above that and internal organs start tearing off their mountings, which is a Bad Thing. For normal driving, you won't get tyres with a higher coefficient of friction than 1, so 1G is your maximum. Do what you like with brakes, ABS and regeneration - you're not going to hurt the driver.
F1 cars manage about 5.5 deceleration at high speeds, by the way, but that's because (1) their slicks have a friction coefficient of around 1.5 and (b) aerodynamic downforce means they have several times their weight to play with.