* Posts by MachDiamond

1030 posts • joined 10 Aug 2012

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When it absolutely, positively needs to be leaked overnight: 120k FedEx customer files spill from AWS S3 silo

MachDiamond
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A good hack

"There is no evidence that the data was compromised" can also be construed as "The hackers were very competent and didn't leave any fingerprints".

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Transport for London to toughen up on taxi firms in the Uber age

MachDiamond
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Re: Re Seatbelts

"Women are a special case and are demonstrably unsafe in mixed sex environments you say?"

If a woman were to request that any "shared" service be female only and the service agreed to do that, they should be allowed to back out because they want to. The first woman might not want to get out of the taxi in the neighborhood where the next pick up is being made. The taxi company can just charge a premium if they like. I wouldn't be all that comfortable to find the next stop is to pick up a bunch of "fares" from an over the top gay bar.

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MachDiamond
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Re: It's all about control

"The reporting to police business is a bit odd too. Surely it is the victim or witnesses who do the reporting, not the people who run an hailing app!"

If the hire company gets a complaint from a passenger, they are supposed to track that sort of thing and discipline employees if there are lots or serious complaints. They may also need to report certain things to the police. If a woman is propositioned by a driver, that's creepy, but not really against the law. If she phoned up the police, they'd just tell her to get over it. If she were to be attacked and there were numerous complaints lodged against that driver, the company should be in a position of liability.

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MachDiamond
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EV Black Cab

"Apparently there is an electric black cab"

Check out the review on "The Fully Charged Show" on YouTube. Robert Llewellyn's online EV and renewable power show.

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Oi! Verizon leaked my fiancée's nude pix to her ex-coworker, says bloke

MachDiamond
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Re: fuck em

" you shouldnt be allowed techology."

Naw, it's ok. The rest of us get fresh loads of nudie photos every week. Even better, we might also get a name and number to avoid or not. Those people should be banned from whinging about it but let's not stop them from delivering the goodies.

Check the servers at your work. The less than adequately gray matter endowed will store phone backups on the company server without thinking that they might be duplicating a few intimate selfies in the process.

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MachDiamond
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Cloud = public

Step one, don't have nudie pics on your cell phone. They have a tendency to want to migrate.

Step two, anything stored online is potentially public. Don't store anything online (or backup etc) that can come back to haunt you.

Step three, don't take naughty pictures of your SO that will get out and end your relationship.

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Helicopter crashes after manoeuvres to 'avoid... DJI Phantom drone'

MachDiamond
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Re: Pink Unicorn?

"Thanks to some actual tests on aircraft components we know that the amount of damage a quadcopter can cause is quite limited, its certainly no worse than hitting a bird.'

If a DJI Phantom hits a rotor blade and leaves any sort of damage, that requires a new and very expensive rotor blade. The "bird" comparison is a cop out. Birds are a big problem too, but there is no comparison. The drone incidents are avoidable where birds are not.

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Kentucky gov: Violent video games, not guns, to blame for Florida school massacre

MachDiamond
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Prescription drugs

An article I skimmed in the last few days noted that most of the US shootings in recent years have been by mentally ill individuals that have been on very potent psychoactive drugs. Change the dosage on those or stop taking them abruptly and people can dive right over a cliff. Couple that with a person that has social issues and plays FPS video games and bad things can happen.

Authorities had been told that he was threatening to do something like this and had the rifle. The FBI admitted they didn't follow up. It's a breakdown all up and down the chain. Of course, the FBI is currently going through a period of not knowing what is and isn't against the law.

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MachDiamond
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"Couldn't possibly be just that an angry, misguided and disenfranchised teen had access to an AR-15 and chose to take that anger out on those he felt had wronged him"

It's misleading to state the guy was a "teen". He is 18 and, therefore, considered an adult. Technically a teen, it's more appropriate to say "adult" when somebody has left school.

In the US, you cannot buy a gun and leave the store with it. You must pass a background check first. Guns sold at gun shows or online have the same restrictions. Guns may only be shipped to a licensed dealer and the buyer may pick them up from that dealer if the background check is complete.

What is an "assault" rifle? The definition varies quite a bit around the world. What I normally see is that any rifle that has a wood stock is a "hunting" rifle and anything with a metal or plastic stock is an "assault" rifle.

The highest shooting crimes in the US are currently in areas with the most restrictive gun laws.

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Home taping revisited: A mic in each hand, pointing at speakers

MachDiamond
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I still make mix tapes, kinda

I still have boxes of vinyl records, tapes and CD's along with Laser Discs that I've mostly ripped. My mix tapes are now Playlists on my iPod (now an iPod is old school). I don't put that stuff on my phone so I'm not running the phone battery flat playing music. I'd have to keep a power back with me since I need the phone for business as a phone.

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Elon Musk's Tesla burns $675.3m in largest ever quarterly loss

MachDiamond
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Re: Unwarranted Trumpanzee

I'm sure Tesla would love to have all of the rank and file rides their bikes to work. Big manufacturing plants have to space shifts apart to allow the parking lot to clear out before the next shift arrives or they'd have to have twice as big of a car park that just sits half empty most of the time. Get a whole bunch of the meat-robots to ride bikes and maybe they could do direct handoffs between shifts and keep the lines running all of the time. If they are only producing 2 Model 3's per hour, they need to use all of the hours of the day they can.

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MachDiamond
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Re: Don't bet against Elon Musk

Recovering rockets was never deemed impossible. It was found to be uneconomic. It takes around 45% more capability in the rocket to bring the first stage back and there is no guarantee that it will prove to be entirely reusable or if there will be enough high value parts in good working order.

Electric cars have just barely been viable. Now they are since with things like carbon taxes, a company can sell an EV at a loss while gaining credits that allow them to sell high margin, giant gas pigs. The bottom line is a sexy black and the company has a fresh coat of green wash. Lose the carbon credits and it's a different story.

Australia borked itself by switching a system that was designed to operate with steady base load power plants to a system with variable and dispersed power inputs and no upgrades to the transmission and switching systems. Boom. Li batteries are a massively expensive way to implement grid level storage. Tesla might have lost their shorts on the Australia deal. They don't provide good enough detail in their financials to analyze that. The bigger question is what the cost differential in power prices is now in South Australia with the switch to renewables. It's not a bad thing to lower reliance on fossil fuels, but I don't want my electricity bill to sudden double. Although, it would make the ROI on installing solar panels look even better.

In the business world, the score is kept by counting up profits. There are no bonus points for "saving the world" (one flamethrower at a time).

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MachDiamond
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Re: Don't bet against Elon Musk

"Its easy to talk about missing production deadlines as a bad thing in the context of a well established automotive industry, but Tesla is still a young automotive company who doesn't have a couple of generations of experience with production lines,"

The lack of experience is a big handicap. It has to be pointed out that Tesla is also rapidly turning over top managers which is usually a good indication that the CEO can be something of an ass. The head of the Model 3 project left months before it's release with the ubiquitous PR statement of "spending more time with family". If things were fine, why wouldn't they stay on until the car was released? Something very smelly had to be going on since it looks very bad on a resume to bail out on a major product shortly before it's released for "personal reasons" that aren't "resign or you're fired".

Beyond losing executives and managers, Elon fired a whole bunch of people in the last year and that is going to land the company in court. California law is very heavily weighted in the employees favor and if some of the former employees are telling the truth, proper protocol wasn't followed. All of Elon's companies are also notorious for burning out the rank and file with long hours, mandatory overtime and hazing of those that like to leave on time to go home to their families. I know a bunch of people that worked at SpaceX briefly. After being there for a few months, they added the job to their resume and started looking elsewhere.

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MachDiamond
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Re: "So someone decided use different battery size for Model 3 "

If you want distinctly different looking cars, it's very hard to have to base your entire design around a set battery pack. Building different configuration battery packs is not a big deal unless you have designed your production around an automated system that doesn't work. From the tidbits I have seen published and knowing a wee bit about volume production, Tesla was shooting directly for as close to 100% automated assembly of the Model 3 and it's left them with no way to insert human labor in build segments where they haven't been able to work out all of the bugs. I've backed myself into corners before and the first thing to do is admit it and burn some midnight oil to come up with an expedient work-around temporarily. In the case of Model 3 battery packs, it would be creating tools and fixtures that humans can use and setting up some space to do the work. People can be amazingly flexible and easier to implement than robots in the short term.

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MachDiamond
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Re: "So someone decided use different battery size for Model 3 "

Li cells can be large. Caravan owners use 100A cells to DIY their own battery packs. The use of small cylindrical cells is a throw back to when they were far cheaper per kWh and using them also means that when a bunch of them fail, the total capacity of the pack doesn't take a big hit all at once. Most other manufacturers besides Tesla use larger cells to save a lot of work putting packs together. Vehicle batteries come with pretty good warranties that run between 8 and 10 years so if there is an issue, chances are that you can get a new pack fitted for free.

The first Pre-Elon Tesla Roadster and the AC propulsion T-Zero used cylindrical cells since they were easy to get and they could be tucked away in any spare space.

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MachDiamond
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Re: re: Car share = norm?

Car "sharing" wouldn't work very well where I am. The density is too low. There is also the inventory problem of a company (which is maximizing its value for the executives) to handle peak usage in the morning and evening and much less during the middle of the day and at night. Think of all of the car parks that it's going to take to store cars when they are not in use. It can also be very frustrating to have to wait when you need to pick up children from activities not only for the parents but also the supervisors at the other end that need to wait until all of the children have been picked up.

You know those independent contractors that are delivering for Amazon with impossible schedules and getting paid less than minimum wage? There won't be any of those people available to keep doing that job since they won't have a car to destroy doing that work.

Autonomy is way the hell off in the distance. It's another technology that will work best in city centers where roads can be uniformly marked, signs can contain reference markers and radio beacons can be placed. Major motorways might be possible eventually. There just needs to be a system that keeps inattentive drivers from plowing into the back of fire trucks that are stopped to attend a previous accident. B roads? Get out in the country where you might have to negotiate via sign language with a driver going in the opposite direction to be able to pass each other isn't something that an autonomous car may be able to do very well. Especially so if the verge is muddy. The thing that would concern me the more is to get in a car, punch up my destination and have the thing tell me that it's not authorized to go where I need to go or that the network is down and the car won't go anywhere. Nobody in Florida needing to get out of the way of a hurricane is going to risk having the car tell them "I can't do that, Dave". Through tornado alley in the middle of the US, one might want to perform an otherwise illegal U-turn on the motorway to avoid being flung through the air or pummeled with hail or debris. The car may not allow the maneuver or a completely autonomous car with no controls just can't be driven manually. There is the network issue again if a tornado knocks out internet in an area. You put a machine in between you and your use of a car.

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MachDiamond
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Re: What proportion of those Sales

"Reservations", not orders. The reservations are also fully refundable (eventually). The people towards the back of the line and those that want to order a base model (the infamous $35k price point) still have a considerable wait.

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MachDiamond
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Re: Unwarranted Trumpanzee

"Or is it just more of your bullshit right-wing frothing?"

Don't paint people of a conservative frame of mind with such a broad brush. It's the conspiracy nuts that are frothing.

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MachDiamond
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Please provide a spreadsheet showing the free government support that isn't tied to things like delivering supplies to ISS, putting satellites in orbit or development money for Commercial Crew.

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MachDiamond
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"It showed them how far the upper stage could get almost to Ceres,"

If they didn't do the PR stunt of trying to land the boosters, they could have made it to Ceres. If they were really clever, they might have been able to land the car on Ceres. That would have shown more acumen than just flinging the rocket up as far as they could make it go. A photo of the roadster on the surface of Ceres would be serious space cred.

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MachDiamond
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"Dunno about that, but that Roadster paid for itself by a factor of 100+. Just being able to go out in front of investors and use this line probably costs a few 100 millions (in terms of share value)."

The stock has taken a right beating this week with a loss of about $5 billion in market Cap. Using the logic above, it could also be said that they would have been better off just loading the upper stage with politicians instead of the car.

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NASA finds satellite, realises it has lost the software and kit that talk to it

MachDiamond
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Hardware is not an issue

Really, I'm amazed that NASA has once again pewed the scrooch on keeping paperwork. After the revelation that they shredded the documentation "by accident" for the Saturn V, one would think they would do a bit better in the future. At the very least, they could have auctioned off a lot of it on eBay for good money per page to space nut collectors like me.

One three ring binder describing the data stream format for commands and payload data would be a great start even if the original software won't run on any modern OS. A quick program that could ping the satellite to send back health information might tell whether it's worth any more work or if the thing is still buggered. If the science packages are not working, maybe there is still fuel on board to de-orbit the satellite safely into the Pacific.

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Electronic voting box makers want kit stripped from eBay – and out of hackers' hands

MachDiamond
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Re: a beautiful piece of legislation

"Texas, California, Florida and New York voters will ALWAYS determine who is elected to these offices."

You could break that down even further and name the largest cities in those states as being the determining factor.

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MachDiamond
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Re: a beautiful piece of legislation

"But it's worse yet when the the ballot system, the "popular vote", can be lost and yet somehow the presidency won."

The reasoning for the Electoral college is very similar to why the US has two congressional houses. The House of Representatives gives each state a number of representatives based on population and the Senate allocates only two senators per state and is also give a bit more strength. If you look at the voter choices in the 2016 US Presidential election, it's easy to see that Ms. Clinton's votes were solidly coming from the largest cities and Mr Trump won every place else. Somebody even made a topographical map according to the numbers of votes for each candidate that showed very well that Ms. Clinton's supporters were heavily slanted to the largest cities. She did very poorly in the middle of the US with much lower population density. It is mathematically possible to win the Electoral vote by carrying only 9 states, but the odds are very low against that. Additionally, the states with the highest number of electoral votes are the most liberal. A strong liberal candidate should be able to win both the popular vote and enough electoral votes. The 2016 election demonstrated that when both candidates aren't of very high quality that it can go either way. I'm not elated that Mr Trump won, but I am happy that Hillary lost.

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MachDiamond
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Re: Ontario, Canada doesn't have these problems . . .

"So, if the first scan was inaccurate how will a second scan be any better?"

If you are assuming that the physical ballots are ok and it's the counting machines that are wrong, you use machines that have checked with known stack of samples that are indistinguishable from the real ones. The second set of machines should have also gone through a different chain of custody.

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MachDiamond
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Re: Ontario, Canada doesn't have these problems . . .

"It is my understanding there is a Federal election law that requires election officials to keep a hardcopy of election machine counts for two years."

In the US, the Federal government can't even get the states to do an audit to find out how bad the fraud is in that state. President Trump tried and was given the Bird. I'm guessing that it would be too embarrassing to the states to have to admit that there is any. Quick approximations I did in an area of California that had good census data, voter counts and posted history of voter turn out was very interesting. Not conclusive, but unusual enough to warrant a critical look.

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MachDiamond
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"Bin the postal system, ask for ID when people vote, etc."

What if you know that you will be out of town or the country on voting day? What if you have mobility issues and getting to the polling place is very difficult?

Just today, Washington state stated they will not be requiring that people applying for a driving license or State ID have to give their country of birth. That will make it easier for non-citizens to vote since it is the state that organizes and oversees voting within the state, not the US federal government.

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MachDiamond
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Re: Admin passwords in the user manual

"Now, the totals could be hacked (or inaccurate for other reasons, including machine failure) but the paper ballot is the legal vote, and they are retained for hand counting if necessary."

The paper ballots could also be put through several machines that have gone through different chains of custody to make it much harder to insert a hack. If the totals don't agree to a very high degree of precision (nothing is error proof) across all machines, the count is suspended until all of the machines can be tested.

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MachDiamond
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"My town has printed voter lists, you have to give your name and address, and they physically cross you off the list. You could pretend to be someone else and vote twice, I guess, but you run the risk of being caught if that person has already voted."

It's the same where I live. I find that a pretty good check. I also vote early in the day. If a person requests a ballot by mail, they should appear on the list as having been sent a ballot to vote by mail and have to surrender it as a complete package to vote in person. If the package isn't complete or is marked, they must complete the mail ballot and send it in that day.

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Electric cars to create new peak hour when they all need a charge

MachDiamond
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Re: Record Downvotes?

"Also: Anyone believing politician committing a political suicide of trying to ban fossil fuels is a bit dumb.'

So, what's your point? Politician's aren't the sharpest tools in the shed. The emphasis is on "tool" when it comes to describing politicians.

I do a agree that an outright ban would be a tough thing to pass in most cases. Not a big thing in the EU, though, since those bu&&ers aren't directly elected to that body and aren't accountable to a particular constituency. Some people will continue to need a petrol or diesel vehicle. Farmers really do use trucks and 4wd's for their stated purpose and not just as posermobiles.

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MachDiamond
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"he UK grid has a generating capacity, flat out, of ~ 96GW so with 8760 hours in a year it could manage 840TWh if everything ran flat-out 24/7. Annual consumption is around 360TWh, so about 41% of that."

You haven't included a deduction for all of the power used in the refining process to make petrol and diesel. Just the electricity alone in one gallon of petrol will allow the Chevy Bolt to go 30 miles.

I do acknowledge that petroleum fuels are one of the densest forms of energy storage. The downside is they are a finite resource and very dirty to obtain and use. Coal and natural gas aren't totally clean and there are issues with currently used reactor designs but, overall, the electrical grid has a much better chance of getting environmentally cleaner where petroleum fuels have a near zero percent chance. Right now, batteries are the best portable method available for storing and transporting power. People talk about Hydrogen, but it's horribly inefficient to produce and to achieve a large enough energy density for a portable application, it has to be put in tank pressurized to 700 bar.

I can't see how a car charger would require training. It's not like it can spill from the end of the plug if you don't secure it properly or explode if you drive off with it still plugged into the car (EV's won't allow you to shift into drive with a cable plugged in). Most people will be using non-DC fast chargers for the bulk of their charging needs and people in city centers that have no place to charge won't be purchasing EV's. Relying on fast chargers is expensive and time consuming. If you don't find one available to just pull up and charge, you might be waiting 30 minutes for your turn. If there is already somebody waiting ahead of you, it could be over an hour. That's a distinct possibility in areas where most of the housing does not have private parking. Maybe that will lead to a gradual reduction in housing density. One can only hope.

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MachDiamond
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Re: This:

When there is a large number of EVs connected and the V2G technology is implemented, you get paid (or credited) more to put power back on the grid and will also be allowed to set how much you will allow. If you have a big trip planned to begin the next morning, you may want to set your V2G allowance to zero. The estimates right now are that no one car will need to put more than 1% of its charge back on the grid to make the system work.

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MachDiamond
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"Could you provide a fully worked example of how a car park with, say, 100 spaces in it could be adapted to provide a charging point for each space, with a connection to the grid for, say 2/3 of them to be charging at any one time?"

Not all of the spaces would need to have the option of charging. The other thing is to offer the lowest level of charging so the greatest number of cars can charge at once and put the charging spaces to the rear of the lot so they don't get "ICEd" as frequently.

I don't always need to put petrol in my car and when I have an EV, I won't always "need" to charge it. If I can get a few free electrons while shopping, that's a bonus, but I am more likely to have been charging at home and in good shape for having enough range.

For a multi-level car park or paid parking, you could be asked to pay more for a charing space, a bit more than that for a higher level charging spot or the minimum for a space with no charging. Your choice.

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MachDiamond
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Re: Wireless charging pads

"Or maybe not. Most of the M25 could become a giant charging pad!!"

EV's are great for sitting in tailbacks. They don't consume much power if you aren't moving.

Any sort of infrastructure that is built into a motorway is likely to need frequent maintenance and replacement. The M25 can be bad enough without having to shut parts of it down every night to work on inductive charging units.

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MachDiamond
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Re: actually no

"even at today's leisurely 120 kW charge rate.

In the next few years, the problem becomes even more moot, with fast charge rates of 350 kW already specified for the Common Charging Standard, and ranges up to 620 miles already announced."

I see a lot of 50kW DC fast chargers. It varies from about 40kW to 100kW for non-Tesla chargers. Tesla chargers vary too as well as what rate the battery controller will allow.

Past a certain rate, a really big charger isn't that big of a deal. The voltage has to get very high which means all of the components in the charger and the car have to be able to insulate against that high high of a voltage or the current goes way up and components have to handle that. Fast chargers are going to be mostly used for long trips and it's not not a burden for the car to take 20-30 minutes. The last long road trip I did, I was timing my stops. A visit to the loo, fill the tank, eat something and a walkabout to stretch muscles was a minimum of 20 minutes if I didn't have to wait in line to fill up with petrol. Since I only make a longish road trip no more than two or three times a year, I don't mind waiting a little bit more for an EV to charge up. If I were in a big hurry, I'd take the train or <shudder> fly. Even my longer drives aren't more than about 250 miles which is entirely doable in a Model 3 or a Bolt if it isn't super cold out. I can leave the car plugged in at my destination to fill up. Spending less on "fuel" is a big bonus.

620 miles of range? Doooooood, that's like 9-10 hours of straight driving and a very expensive and heavy battery pack to lug around. I like to be more leisurely about my driving on trips like that and stop here and there to see the sights. If I really needed to do long run in minimum time and was taking the car because I needed to pack a bunch of kit, I'd rent a high MPG diesel with a big fuel tank. Chances are that a trip like that would be for work rather than pleasure.

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MachDiamond
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Re: I've been pointing this out for years.

"Have you factored in the cost of a replacement battery in 7 to 10 years? One of the things holding me back from an EV - apart from the fact that until recently there was nothing that could guarantee me a 100 mile range at motorway speeds on a dark morning in the winter - was the thought of having to replace the battery at some point."

You plan to still be driving that wreck in 10 years?

There are already third party replacements for the earliest Prius'. Nissan's new pack for the Leaf is the same form factor but has more capacity. Chances are very good that by the time you EV battery pack needs replacing, there will be several options available and it's likely that you will also be able to install and even higher capacity one. If you get it from China is will be 18x more wonderful (according to the package). The current EVs have battery warranties from 8-10 years so it will be a while before having to buy a pack will be an issue. At least one manufacturer has said they will finance the purchase of an OEM pack down the road. In ten year's time I expect that EV's will have radically matured and you may just want a new one for all of the new features. If you don't, there will be other people that do and refurbished packs made from those vehicle's batteries will be available for a good price.

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MachDiamond
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Re: I've been pointing this out for years.

"Pumped storage is...erm...storage. Although that does raise an interesting point. Pumped storage is viable because they buy leccy at cheap "dead of night" rates and sell it back it peak demand rates. I wonder how long that will be viable if everyone is charging at "dead of night" rates/times?"

Pumped storage also absorbs over capacity when there is too much wind if possible. Otherwise they have to feather the turbines and "turn them down".

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MachDiamond
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Re: I've been pointing this out for years.

"At 60mpg, that's not much cheaper than diesel. And there's no 70% duty+full rate VAT on leccy!"

A fast charger is an expensive option. It's like the petrol station in the middle of nowhere that charges 2x since they have you by the short ones. You are always better off charging at home/work or a free charger put in by the council if you can. I think there are some shops that will waive the fees if you spend enough money at the store.

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MachDiamond
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Re: I've been pointing this out for years.

"The average electric car consumes 34kWh per 100 miles. The average home PV installation produces an average (but highly variable) 20kWh per week."

Whoops. Error, Redo from start.

The Chevy Bolt EV will go 240 miles with a 60kWh battery pack (more if you aren't running heat or AC and you don't drive like a mad man). That's .25kWh/mile or 25kWh for 100 miles. A 3kW solar PV installation is around 18kWh/day (lots of variables here so let's call it 10kWh). 10kWh/day is 70kWh/week or 280 miles of travel/week or 1,100 miles per month. If you can get a special tariff for charging your EV in the wee hours for 5p/kWh, forget the panels and set the built in timer.

The best place to get a home battery is the wrecking yard. Find a wrecked EV with a battery pack the size you want and get a kit to turn it into a home storage battery. There are companies that are going to be making mini fast chargers that use a repurposed car battery pack to store up energy until you dump it into an EV.

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MachDiamond
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Re: I've been pointing this out for years.

"For a lot of people, quick charging in a shared location will be a necessity - and that brings a different set of infrastructure challenges."

For people that don't have the option to charge at home, they will be the last people that EV's will make sense for. There are some very clever kits that can be installed in light poles where the cord set contains the communications to the service company for billing. The beauty is that the street lighting is changed to LED to free up the capacity needed to charge a car at night when the light is on without having to upgrade any wiring. During the day it's not a problem. It's featured on The Fully Charged Show on YouTube. It's made in Britain too!

Quick chargers are handy when you are on a long trip, but expensive for use all of the time. The best thing is slower chargers that are all over the place so it's easier for locations to add more slots of charging. If your car is sitting the common 90% of the time, if it's plugged in, it's not a problem to have it on a slow charger. If that's still not enough you can always hit the fast charger every once in a while to catch up.

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MachDiamond
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Re: I've been pointing this out for years.

"It only needs to be clear that this is a gradual 50-year-plus project, which is anyway how long it would take for electric cars to be in a large majority."

There are several governments that are already drafting legislation to ban ICE vehicle sales by 2025-2030. A load of tosh to do it that way, but city centre congestion charges could go way up for ICE cars and there may be some local bans during peak hours of the day.

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MachDiamond
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Re: I've been pointing this out for years.

"One problem I can see is our company has about 20 company vehicles, (only 2 hybrids at the moment) but it due to physical and circuit limitations, we could only install a maximum of 4x 7.2KW chargepoints ( we currently have 2 on the building frontage) without a large investment."

Easy, install 8 3.3kW charge points. If you work all day at the same location, your car will just be sitting there doing nothing. A 3.3kW charge point adds around 14miles of range per hour of charging. A half a day of charging would be 56 miles of range replaced and you can arrange usage so cars are exchanged around lunch if necessary. A company EV left overnight would gain about 140 miles of range or, with a little fancy lockout switching, those 4 7.2kWh chargers could be made available instead of the 8 smaller ones.

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MachDiamond
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Re: I've been pointing this out for years.

'And, no, I'm not buying a battery pack for the house, the energy used in their manufacture, the relatively short life span (10 years, I believe) and the difficulty of recycling them means that for the time being, they definitely fall into the "not green" box. Very useful for people who live off grid though.'

In the next decade, home battery packs will most likely be ex-car battery packs. A 60kWh battery that has dropped to 40kWh sucks in the car, but it's still a lot of power. The projections now are that many packs will spend 10 years in a car and another 10 years in a stationary application before being recycled. The Cobalt used in the Li batteries is what makes them valuable.

Visit Sunamp.co.uk. They are making thermal batteries to store excess electrical energy from PV panels as heat for hot water and home heating. I don't know what they cost and seeing a video on them gave me an idea to build my own. I am guestimating that it will be around £300-£400 for 7kWh of thermal storage if I can get the parts I want to use from a salvage yard. I'm still playing with the design.

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MachDiamond
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Re: I've been pointing this out for years.

"Yes, but 61% of road fuel price is tax + duty. No government is going to give up on that, whether you get your power from the grid or home PV. Electric cars are only significatly cheaper to "fuel" because they aren't a big enough market yet."

There will come a time when you will have to report your mileage and the road tax will be based on that. I expect that the car may do it automatically "for you" and you will be billed periodically.

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MachDiamond
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Re: actually no

The easiest fix is already in place. Electricity providers mostly offer reduced rates to EV owners if they charge their cars off-peak in the wee hours. Every modern EV I've seen can be set to start charging at a specified time. Some have a feature to default to the programmed time when at home and to start immediately anywhere else.

A 45 minute commute each way for work is likely only 30 miles or so one way. There should still be plenty of range for an evening's toodle around the shops or cinema or the person bought the wrong car (ie, a Fiat 500e).

It's best to thing about charging in terms of how many miles of range are replaced for every hour of charging using different power sources. In the US, with half the voltage, it starts at 5mi/hour for 120V, 25mi/hour for 240V and gobs for dc fast charging that will vary with its power output rating. The slowest rate in the UK is about 10mi/hour. That's got the car topped off from the 60 miles of use to commute in 6 hours. If your charging started at 10pm to take advantage of better rates, the car is all done covering the commute by 4am while you are still sawing logs. Nothing is mandated that you have to completely top up the battery every time you plug in to charge so if you wind up driving more one day, it's not a big deal. The more level 2 chargers that wind up in shopping centers and along the high street, the easier it will be to follow your ABC's (Alway Be Charging).

Robert Llewellyn has a great show on YouTube called "Fully Charged" and there is an episode from way back where he visits the control center for the national grid. When he asked them about EV charging, he was told that they'd love to have more usage in the middle of the night to fill in the "bathtub" of reduced demand. Keep in mind that refining crude into petrol takes 7.46kWh per US gallon of electricity. Just the electricity to make a gallon of petrol can push a Chevy Bolt EV a bit more than 30 miles. The electricity used to refine 8 gallons of petrol will charge a 60kWh from flat to full. The range of the Bolt is advertised as 240 miles (238 really but I'm rounding off). 60kWh @ .12p/kwh is £7.20. How much is 8 gallons (30L) of petrol to push an ICE car that gets 30mpg that same 240 miles?

I had the same thought about everybody plugging in and charger when they got home but learned that it's really a non-starter. People get home and put the kettle on without a second thought and that is very noticeable on the grid. You won't like the results of making your coffee or tea at 2am to get a better electrical tariff, but it isn't a problem when charging the car.

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Newsflash: Car cyber-security still sucks

MachDiamond
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Conspiracy factor

By hacking into a car or reverse engineering it's very weak security system, you have violated the US DMCA. This shifts the responsibility of going after the hackers to government agencies rather than putting liability on the manufacturer.

All of the wirelessly controlled "features" of new cars and many of the built in ones leave me wanting a good schematic so I can rip them out first thing. I don't need my phone to be able to switch on the heater or start the car. I find opening the trunk remotely as something to be avoided. I certainly don't need to do any of these things from half way around the world. I don't want my phone to be the key to the car. It's bad enough to have somebody nick your phone, but even worse if they can then walk through the car park and have your vehicle too. Phones break very easily and if your battery goes flat, you could be locked out. A more secure key fob would be better. You can press the button on the remote from a short distance away and if that doesn't work, you have a mechanical lock that will at least get you into the car if the car has lost a quantity of magic smoke or its battery has gone flat.

It should be a recognized law that anything that is made more convenient is less secure.

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NHS OKs offshoring patient data to cloud providers stateside

MachDiamond
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Re: Whatever next?

"Do you mind if he uses Wikipedia?"

Mind? I'd be scared out of my wits and looking for another doctor.

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Aut-doh!-pilot: Driver jams 65mph Tesla Model S under fire truck, walks away from crash

MachDiamond
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Look out ahead

An attentive driver is going to be more likely to see something ahead in many cases. They will either see those flashing red lights if there is emergency services on site or traffic flow different than normal. It might just be lots of brake lights as drivers further ahead slow down. I've seen plenty of incidents from a fair distance off that make me get over so I can exit the motorway and avoid getting stuck in the tail back.

I haven't seen any automated driving systems that show that they are considering traffic and obstacles further out than their immediate surroundings with the furthest extent being across a major intersection. You come up on things pretty fast at 100kph if you aren't looking ahead.

I'll put money on the person having the "Autopilot" on as they stated and were faffing about with their phone. I'm sure we'll hear very quick from Tesla if it was definitely off. If the person was texting or on the web/net and the phone was sync'd to the car, those details might get release too at some point. There might even be a sensor in the seat that will tattle on them for being a bit "windy".

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MachDiamond
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Re: Wonder what the excuse will be this time?

“Not only am I rich enough to afford this ship\car, I am also rich enough not to take it seriously.”

My take would be "I'm rich so I must be smarter than everybody else".

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MachDiamond
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Re: Carshare

"No passenger needed in California for all electric vehicles; those get a sticker that authorizes them to use the carpool/carshare/diamond/HOV (High Occupancy Vehicle) lane."

New EV's qualify to purchase a sticker to use the HOV lanes, it's not an automatic gift. There are also yearly limits on how many of those stickers they issue. They expire in a few years so they aren't forever either.

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