* Posts by TechnicalBen

1555 posts • joined 23 Mar 2012

Sweden leaked every car owners' details last year, then tried to hush it up

TechnicalBen
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Re: America... no, the world, stranger than fiction!

They already DID that: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Love_Canal

(Ok, it was not a playground... it was an entire school! There is a limit to intelligence, but not to...)

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What is this – some kind of flashy, 3-bit consumer SSD? Eh, Seagate?

TechnicalBen
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Re: Getting closer.

Ahem: http://store.steampowered.com/hwsurvey/

About a third have over 1tb. So 65% have under 500gb and under total. Plus, 25% have over 250gb free... so not really burning for 1tb SSDs, but I guess there is a bit of a demand for *gamers* there.

Gamers are still a drop in the ocean for the general market for these companies. With servers and big consumer markets being the main drive. Plus costs. Costs and profits of selling 1 tb drive, vs splitting up those chips and selling 4 250gb drives, or 2 500gb drives!

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TechnicalBen
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Re: Getting closer.

I'll upvote both of you.

Non gamers can get by on a 250gb easy. Gamers will vary between 250 to 500gb. As you say, most recent AAA games are around 30-50gb, with a few exceptions being 3-8gb. Mainly those with high budgets and story line get lots of HD textures and video, which takes up more space. Smaller, 2d or for example multiplayer games like Rocket League are much smaller in size.

But in reality, these companies know the sales numbers, and how many people are buying the 500gb ot 1tb drives. So place pricing accordingly. While we may be exceptions (me only needing just under 500gb, others just over for gaming), we may not be the major market for them.

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Repairable-by-design Fairphone runs out of spare parts

TechnicalBen
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Nice to hear they tried...

But I guess you either need engineers (and programmers), or need to make massive cut backs in scope. Say, going for a known supported generic model, instead of rolling your own.

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TechnicalBen
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Re: 4 year life?

I don't understand parts suppliers... Oh, I know there is supply and demand and all that, but I still find it bizarre. Example:

Laptop new cost you £300.

Old laptop you own, would cost £150 to replace with a current bottom of the line model as specs have advanced.

Spare screen would cost £100 when it was all new.

Now? On Ebay? They want £150 or £200.

Second hand models either cost £80 or £200, so either cheaper than a repair, or more expensive than new (though different) models!

It's cheaper to replace the entire thing with another second hand or an entirely new one. How do these parts sellers even sell anything with at least double the price a customer would pay!?!

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TechnicalBen
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Just buy another one...

I got my latest printer for £3 from a charity shop, practically new. Considering my first for college cost me £300 (I wanted a nice good AIO from HP! :D ), a massive savings!

I think the actual printer is ~£30/20 new, so not bad either way.

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Boffin supercharges FPGAs with timing signal tweak

TechnicalBen
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Re: Love the comment...

Kind of off topic, but amazing still...

A novel way to do this I saw, used for camcorders etc, was an acoustic delay.

Small piezoelectrics setup to receive an ultrasonic pulse, which is beamshaped around a course so as to give an exact delay. Multiples in one little panel, and you can setup things like display scanning and timing.

Ultrasonic Delay Lines: https://youtu.be/tQyX3F4ggM8

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DeepMind says it's given AI an imagination. Let's take a closer look at that

TechnicalBen
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Re: Creative sub-editor?

Yep. How much of creativity is a random walk. How creative is a random walk?

But the article did cover the two aspects of AI programming, random trial and error, and programmed "knowledge".

Really, while our own minds may work anyway possible, when it comes to making things, we are limited to those we can describe. So until we know how to perfectly describe "intelligence", all AI boils down to simple algorithms.

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Fan of FBI cosplay? Enjoy freaking out your neighbors? Have we got the eBay auction for you

TechnicalBen
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Trap and honey?

You'd have to be very bold to buy this. :D

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I've got a verbal govt contract for Hyperloop, claims His Muskiness

TechnicalBen
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SpaceX vs Hyperloop.

Space X was expensive and niche, not impossible. Hyperloop is near impossible. So while some things can be done by pushing the boundaries, other things have hard limits, or hardly practical solutions.

See for example the changes made to the Space X plans when reality, or lack of desire (no market, or plain old safety concerns and learning curves) mean doing it the old/easy way is often the only choice.

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Why can't you install Windows 10 Creators Update on your old Atom netbook? Because Intel stopped loving you

TechnicalBen
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Re: Microcode

Google it.

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Let's harden Internet crypto so quantum computers can't crack it

TechnicalBen
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Re: I've got a question..

Correlation I guess. While any data set can be translated to any other, there is only one way to translate it to a specific data set. When your one specific way matches twice, or more to a "valid" result, then correlation strongly suggests you have found the key.

So, if you decrypt "egg" in one message "bacon" in the next and "sandwich" in the third, good chance it's right, and someone just ordered an egg and bacon sandwich. But if you get "egg" in one "panda" in the second and "dfjiovdjodvjio" in the third, well, it's probably not right... or a very intelligent panda wanting egg sandwiches just sneezed while typing.

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TechnicalBen
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Re: Neat idea. Obviously depends on the qualtiy of the "random" generator

Public/private key mixing seems to overcome this. And there seem to be methods available mathematically that are hard to compute both normally/generally and with quantum computing

Quantum computers are not magic, just use a different type of method to attack a mathematical problem. They are really slow at some types of problems/searches. So you could slow them down, though as with any encryption, if it can be made, it can be unmade. :P

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TechnicalBen
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Re: @ Mark 65 Possible deadly flaw - compromised software

The quantum computer does not need the noise file. With sufficient quantum bits, you just search the entire search space for a "key". OK, I over simplified there, but still...

If it is used as a one time pad, then yes, one time pads are theoretically impossible to compromise. However, how do you share the one time pad? Any method of sharing it publicly (over the internet) could be attacked by the quantum computer algorithm.

So I assume the "ethereal" part is making the switch in one time pads quicker than the quantum computer can break them? I've no idea how that stop historical decryption (brute force and waiting a long time to get a result), but it could help stop real time decryption.

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We're all saved. From the killer AI. We can live. Thanks to the IEEE

TechnicalBen
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Terminator

Then I suggest...

You brush up on some movies to remind you how well it goes for the programmers!

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Reborn Nokia phones biz loses its head

TechnicalBen
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Re: Hard to believe

Failure to adapt is a failure. Though there are also companies throwing themselves at crazy "new" ideas instead (I wonder how many VR will kill off?).

Nokia did well, . It's interesting Motorola are still around, considering their Razor line was popular, but IMO seems a flash in the pan compared to Apple or Nokia in general. Is it because they were happy with general handsets and small profits? Where as Nokia could not keep the number one spot forever without some form of burnout?

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China's 'future-proof' crypto: We talk to firm behind crazy quantum key distribution network

TechnicalBen
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Could we use the mirrors on the moon...

To share photons and thus crypto keys then? :D

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TechnicalBen
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Re: Just curious...

If I've read it right with quantum key sharing, the hard work can only be done in the key generation step. You can only confirm if Alice and Bob are the only holders of the key, or if someone has snagged the key (taken Alice's or Bob's). You cannot stop any other type of attack on the crypto (such as brute force decryption etc).

Not sure if the method in the article covers this though.

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Pastor la vista, baby! FCC enforcers shut down church pirate radio

TechnicalBen
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Re: To be fair ...

Customer A or customer B can pay for what they use. Or the company can apply an averaged price so A and B are the same.

Is there anything wrong with customers paying either for their use, or the same price? Either way is an option, either way is "fair".

Breaking NN means a company can charge a customer based on their name, the colour of the webpage, or the brand of their shoes... instead of, charging for... THE SERVICE PROVIDED.

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TechnicalBen
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Re: To be fair ...

Um, no one on NN rejects charging for packets. They reject charging for specific packets.

Charging for more bandwidth is not in opposition for NN.

Charging both Netflix and the customer for bandwidth is against NN, as both were already paying for those packets/bandwidth etc.

If more bandwidth = more cost, then charging all companies the same would be fair. Having nodes/servers/routers that cost more to route through is fine, providing, again, it's a fair competition for allowing anyone to bid/pay to use it.

NN stops people opening your mail, and charging you more if it's from a woman, or checking who the sending company is, and charging you more if it's from Amazon (but the same size, shape and weight, distance and cost as any other sender).

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Eggheads identify the last animal that will survive on Earth until the Sun dies

TechnicalBen
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Mushroom

Re: Instant space travel

Let's go even more Sci-Fi and take it to the extreme.

If we assume* the universe is infinite, then we can assume every possible arrangement of mass, energy, and thus information actually exists.

So we can conclude you are already on another planet, all types of planets, in lots of places. In fact, assuming an infinite universe, there is also a planet made entirely of millions of you!

Picture for what happens to a mind if it tries to extrapolate to infinity with insufficient information.

*here in lies the problem, and possible mistake. So don't worry about it!

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TechnicalBen
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Re: Primitive Life?

Actually, biologically, there is nothing preventing us for regrowing lost body parts.

Other than normal development and maturity. That is, it is a biological system turned off once at a certain age/development. In our case, extremely early.

Some complex animals do retain it though https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Regeneration_(biology) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Axolotl. If it's not beneficial/required for survival, then it is not retained/used in the animal. That does not mean it's impossible, or because it is "more developed".

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Now here's a novel idea: Digitising Victorian-era stamp duty machines

TechnicalBen
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Re: On the plus side ...

I doubt such was the worry when the bobbins were thrown out!

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Luxembourg passes first EU space mining law. One can possess the Spice

TechnicalBen
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Re: Now is the time

Only one problem.

There are a LOT of them.

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Funnily enough, charging ££££s for trashy bling-phones wasn't a great idea

TechnicalBen
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Re: You don't get rich from selling to the rich...

The rich get rich by selling to the poor and buying off the poor... then?

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Fake Newspaper steals Reg design to spruik storage upstart

TechnicalBen
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Re: Eh, give them a break

Being able to see Reg specific links though... is not on. Copying/taking/stealing in such a way is exactly that.

Now had they re-drawn/markup'ed by hand, then they would not have copied the "m3" link, and it would be mainly their own work, while imitating a design.

Photographing/copy pasting someone else's work, while presenting it to customers as your work, takes personal effort to give the idea you did the work to the customer. It's a decision to pass off, not a mistake.

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TechnicalBen
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Re: Aqua Marina

https://youtu.be/GFTgkibl7DU

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Set your alarms for 2.40am UTC – so you can watch Unix time hit 1,500,000,000

TechnicalBen
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Re: It can go on

Yep. That's why I assume 1g, and why the colonies even exist... for fuel. The only thing limiting space travel is fuel... though while "within your lifetime" is true, 30-60 years does not always leave much left for the rest of it. :P

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TechnicalBen
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Re: It can go on

That sounds amazing.

I've toyed with the idea of non-ftl space flight sci-fi and wrote a short story. I skipped commenting on the specifics of space travel, other than the fact it takes 30-60 years for the closest next point of interest (assuming constant 1g acceleration and deceleration to a 1-3ly away star).

If I ever continue the story, there will be little to no external contact for the life off the colony. With the exception of materials/fuel trade (though in reality any system would hold more than enough of either and never need materials/energy trade).

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Amazon mumbles into its coffee when asked: Will you give app devs people's Alexa chats?

TechnicalBen
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Trollface

"Amazon declined to comment"

Probably the best option... Alexia was listening to them!

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Wi-Fi firm Purple sneaks 'community service' clause into its T&Cs

TechnicalBen
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Re: I am a nerd, I read T&Cs before clicking 'agree'

IIRC it does not stand up in court, as the above post says. Some banking, investment and pension companies have found this out when trying to use small print of varying types to change policies on customers.

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Hackers able to turbo-charge DJI drones way beyond what's legal

TechnicalBen
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News just in...

Criminals able to:

break laws.

sharpen blunt edges.

decide to take an action or not take an action.

do something it is impossible for us to stop.

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Wikibon drops bomb, says Intel's Optane could be a flop...tane

TechnicalBen
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Re: Wrong comparison

The option for a cold boot/power cycle/memory clear has nothing to do with the ability to power on from that memory. Hibernation/suspension/sleep has been available for spinning dirt for years, so not adding in Xpoint (or similar tech) is not a problem.

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TechnicalBen
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Just seen a good idea else where...

Someone posted about the future of PCs being the RAM as HBM on the CPU, super quick, but smaller than now (8gb and 16gb vs the 24, 32 and 64 options) but with Xpoint in the DRAM slots (or as an option to). That could work, giving the current ram a boost in speed being so closely integrated into the CPU pipeline, and giving a nice power off, speed, size and price friendly "cache" of storage for an SSD or spinning rust.

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TechnicalBen
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Re: Current offering is not compelling...

IMO the only place this tech makes sense is as a total replacement for SSD (but we have to wait for the cost to drop for that, as we did for platters vs SSD), or as a total replacement for DRAM.

So it's a waiting game. Remember, even the first petrol/diesel cars were slower than horses! :D

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TechnicalBen
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Re: Wrong comparison

Yep. Just as early SSDs were there for OS only, as the cost for the entire system being 500gb flash was prohibitive, we get the same with Xpoint. Would would have dreamed of 1 or 2 tb flash drives when they first released? Now would you want to go back to booting off a platter?

But in 5 years time? A 500gb Xpoint PC, with no ram, just a "SSD", or would it be a "XSSD"? Would boot instantly, power off instantly, resume instantly... it's just seeing where they price it, between the cost of flash + DRAM, or greater than Flash + DRAM to milk the profit. I'd assume they will milk the profit, and that will kill uptake. But if they balance production and demand, it will be ok for now.

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TechnicalBen
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"Nearly as good"

It's apples and oranges.

Xpoint is not an SSD, it's not RAM. It's inbetween. If the PC/system does not need it, it does not need it.

The article also makes mistakes, while a RAM disk/cache is faster it is often more expensive (even with Xpoint high priced entry to the market).

If Xpoint does not drop in price and does not increase in speed/size then yep, it will fail. But if it keeps up, it will have a few very specific use cases (where instant on/power failure redundancy is needed and an SSD does not have the write cycles/speed).

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Good luck building a VR PC: Ethereum miners are buying all the GPUs

TechnicalBen
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Can you use...

"Not that much" and "GTX 1080" i the same sentence? ;)

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May the excessive force be with you: Chap cuffed after Star Trek v Star Wars row turns bloody

TechnicalBen
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Re: Now I've woken up

Blade runner now has a sequel and the some characters were ex astronauts/space workers. But it did the right thing, in that it never showed any of that bit. It was in the background, part of the culture and not part of the story.

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TechnicalBen
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Re: I'm going Luddite and voting for Game of Thrones!

Am I bad I actually like Wesley...

...'s stories ideas. Not the character, but the episodes often had some good ideas and sci-fi to them.

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Google blows $800k on bots to flood the UK with 30,000 'articles' a month

TechnicalBen
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Re: A boring dystopia

I would not say Google destroyed the media outlets... they are very qualified at doing that themselves. Google just took up in the empty space.

I agree with the rest though.

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Samsung stalls Bixby launch because it am English not so good

TechnicalBen
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Re: They're not listening

I'd say the basic functionality is nice, but need not be replicated hundred fold. "Play music" or more precisely "play this specific band/track etc" is nice quality of life style functionality.

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TechnicalBen
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Re: Oh dear

One day someone will get their entire multinational company to copy Google, only to find it was one of the famous Google April Fools they copied!

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Virgin Media admits it 'fell short' in broadband speeds ahead of lashing from BBC's Watchdog

TechnicalBen
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Re: New???

Complaining about the price of A&A ISP services is like complaining about the cost of bread, when horse manure is "free"...

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New work: Algorithms to give self-driving cars 'impulsive' human 'ethics'

TechnicalBen
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Re: Save the women and children first!

Being able to make a choice, and responsibility are different things. For example, some people have the ability to act, but not the knowledge.

So often, in real life, the trolley problem falls apart as people do not have any knowledge of the situation, or too little to have responsibility or to act. Such as not knowing who is in a cart/on a track or not knowing if the outcome will be worse or better... it could hit only one person, then fall off the track and hit a school of orphans. However, in many instances a "good Samaritan" law covers you if you act on the knowledge you have and act in a way to minimise damage.

So applying breaks to try and stop, if it goes wrong and derails, but you did not know it would do so, negated you from responsibility of the derailment, as you tried to slow down controlled.

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One thought equivalent to less than a single proton in mass

TechnicalBen
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FAIL

Re: Confused units

I think I lost brain cells, and thus brain weight, just trying to read this article. :(

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SpaceX halts Intelsat 35e launch twice in a row

TechnicalBen
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Re: Better safe than sorry

There are some pretty nice "sparkles" as it hits the max pressure boundary and starts to go out of the atmosphere. The engines rocket plume flares out and starts to look like a starburst pattern. :)

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Constant work makes the kilo walk the Planck

TechnicalBen
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Joke

Re: It's the reduction in uncertainty that's most impressive.

Your poor cats!

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TechnicalBen
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Re: There's a movie about it the redefinition of the kilogram

Looks interesting. Could go off the deep end though with quotes like "Our need for references is nothing but a comfort answer"... as reference is how we communicate, experience and exist. Yes our obsession could be a problem, or other parts of it. But "reference" and "confirmation" are entirely required and part of our existence and experience.

Without them we would be nothing... and hence why I both love and hate "art" films. For being both beautiful, and self destructive in their musings.

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