* Posts by Anne van der Bom

56 publicly visible posts • joined 26 Oct 2007


Arctic ice refuses to melt as ordered

Anne van der Bom

@Lu - correction

without a reasonable doubt --> beyond a reasonable doubt

Anne van der Bom


"You suddenly, incorrectly conclude that one caused the other."

No, that was never done by any scientist. There is more proof than that, like the isotopes that Mark referred to.

In absence of any other remotely plausible explanation you go for the obvious one that is staring you in the face. That is called common sense. You keep insisting that it the rising CO2 levels is caused by some unknown, unnamed mechanism and call that LOGIC.

By the way, I am not suggesting that you base science on common sense, the common sense must be applied to policy. If something is proven without a reasonable doubt, then common sense tells you to accept that and move on. Asking for 100% certainty often proves counterproductive.

So, Lu let me ask you the same question as Dodgy Geezer: name and explain the mechanism that is causing the current rise in CO2 levels.

Anne van der Bom

@Shawn, Tiny

"ppm=Parts per million"

"310ppm to 380ppm"

"Very tiny, tiny, tiny percentage of the atmosphere."

Seems you are using gut instinct to do science: "if it is only 0.03% then it is negligable". Seems you slept your way through lesson one in science: never trust your feelings.

The first 280 ppm gets us a comfy +15 C avg temperature (instead of -18 C). So this very tiny, tiny, tiny amount definitely does a lot.

What if I exposed you to the very tiny, tiny, tiny concentration of 380 ppm sarin? Would the effect of that be negligable?

Anne van der Bom

@Dodgy Geezer

You seem pretty sure of yourself. That means your opinion must be anchored in hard solid evidence.

Can you please answer the following two questions for me?

Name and explain the mechanism that causes CO2 below 280 ppm to warm the Earth, and the CO2 above 280 ppm not.

On geological timescale, the rise in CO2 levels coincides exactly with the human CO2 emissions due the burning of fossil fuels and deforestation. If this is a coincidence (as you are convinced it is), name and explain the mechanism causing the current rise in CO2.

Oh, and of course, I only accept PROOF.

Anne van der Bom


"When things turn cold Algore will turn up the thermostat and count his money while he admires his Nobel peace prize and chuckles at the suckers"

Sorry that's a level of argumenting that is above my cerebral capacities - Anne out.

Anne van der Bom

@Shawn - what is it?

Shawn can you make up your mind please. I read in your post:

a) ...A tiny increase in manmade CO2....

b) ...huge increases in manmade CO2....

Please select a) or b)

Anne van der Bom

@Steven Goddard: where is the data?


You ask Jeff, who apparently DID do a proper analysis based on the raw data, the following question:

"Can you give more precise links to where you got the 14% data? I'd like to try them out.

I used images from the CT website to get the 30%."

From which I conclude that you accuse the NSIDC of misleading statements, without even knowing where their data is, let alone bothering to download and analyse it.

Btw, look at the following image from IARC-JAXA, seems we're heading for second place, beating the pre-2007 record of 2005:


Heavyweight physics prof weighs into climate/energy scrap

Anne van der Bom

Thanks for the attempt

@Anonymous Coward:

You bet I've got an axe to grind with a professor that makes such obvious mistakes and nonetheless has the nerve of presenting his arguments as the final word in the renewables debate.

You state that he used a fuel consumption figure of 12 l/100 km. You misread that, he used 12km/l, which (you may check that by yourself) is pretty much the average fuel consumption of a european car. Then you divide by 5 and conclude that an average car should consume 2.4 l/100. This is ~42 km/l or (in Imperial Units) 117 mpg. I know of no car that can do 117 mpg, let alone the average british car.

If you had read a bit further down, you would have seen that he ends up with a figure of 40 kWh per day (based on 50 km per day). That 40 kWh/day is what I used in my calculation. So actually, what fuel consumption he based his calculation on, is of no importance.

The 1.25 km/kWh consumption figure he ends up with is roughly five times as much as the actual consumption of an electric car in every day use. That is not what I would call a ballpark estimate.

Thanks for the serious approach. Much better than the sheepish hooray hallelujah posts at the top of the page.

Anne van der Bom

More ammo from me - type

Oops. Make that 100.000 sq. km of farmland.

Anne van der Bom

More ammo from me

The line of reasoning is classical: divide and conquer. I examines each alternative energy source separately, and then dismisses it as unable to cover our energy needs in an acceptable manner.

We would need to cover 40% of our country in wind turbines, so forget wind.

We would need to spend x trillion on solar cells, so forget solar.

We would need 100 sq km of farmland for biofuels, so forget biofuels.

We would need to drill 15000 holes for geothermal, so forget geothermal.

You must always look at the combination of different types of renewals. Never put all your eggs in one basket.

I am not stupid. I do realise that renewables offer a huge challenge and are riddled by a host of problems, but are they unsolvable problems? Decide for yourself.

Anne van der Bom

Please don't believe me

In line of my advise to stay sceptic, here is my calculation on the hot bath vs. tv on standby.

A hot bath is around 70 l of water that needs to be heated from 15C to 35C. With a 90% efficient heater, that takes an amount of energy of (70000 * 4.2 * 20) / 0.9 = 6.5 MJ.

A tv on standby consumes around 2 W of electrical power. With the average generating efficiency at 35%, that amount of energy buy you 6.5 million / (2 / 0.35) = 1.13 million seconds = 13 days standby time. Since a tv is on standby only 20 hours per day (and in use the other 4), I will apply a correction of 24/20, coming to around 16 days. Two weeks, not 6 months.

This assumes the hot water for the bath is not created by a electrical boiler, but a gas fired boiler. In case of an electrical boiler, I would need to apply the 35% generating efficiency to the hot water too, making the hot bath equivalent to around 6 weeks of tv standby time. Another miss by a factor of 4.

The 2 W standby figure is what I believe is a pretty common value.

Please do not believe me. Check my math and assumptions! Stay sceptic.

Anne van der Bom

No I did not

@Anonymous Coward:

You missed the point completely. I and the professor was talking about wind turbines to provide the power for the cars, not conventional power plants!

Please read carfully. And stay sceptic.

Anne van der Bom

Stay sceptic

An advice that I forgot in my first post.

Everybody seems very eager to believe this professor. He is only human and can make mistakes. Don't be lured into the belief that if a book contains that much of math, that it must be true.

Stay sceptic!

Anne van der Bom


Well I can already mention the first glaring mistake. It is the claim that 10% of britain would have to be covered in wind turbines to provide half engergy for enabling the cars in Brintain to travel 50 km/day. I checked up on his calculation and he comes to an amount of energy of 40kWh/day....... by using the calorific value of fuel!

Aaaaargh. This is so fundamentally wrong. He completely the point that an average car engine is 20% efficient, and an electric motor around 90%.

Actual real-world data of electricity consumption for an electric car (comparable to our current petrol cars!) is somewhere between 6 and 10 km per kWh. This is a full factor of 5 less!

I wouldn't trust a professor that make mistakes that are so fundamentally and obviously wrong. And he is boasting about having all the numbers like he knows it all. I would say he didn't do his homework

CherryPal out sweetens Apple with 2W, ultra-cheap PC

Anne van der Bom

Where's the wifi?

If this thing is to be bought to be used in the living room/bed rooms, daddy sure's not happy to put ethernet wires all over the place.

Oracle ignores BEA out of existence

Anne van der Bom


The text is of course:

And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without His notice, is it likely that an empire can rise without His help?

Intel wants to own the weather prediction business

Anne van der Bom
Paris Hilton

Software lags hardware - 2

It really stuns me that a man that is supposedly intelligent (otherwise you wouldn't be at the helm at one of the most successful companies in history), can state that 'software lags hardware'. I never heard such utter nonsense.

Software and hardware are two totally uncomparable things. It is the same as saying that 'cars lag roads' or 'music lags digital audio'.

Paris, cos even she's smart enough to understand that.

Is the earth getting warmer, or cooler?

Anne van der Bom
Thumb Up

@Steven Goddard: clarification

Like Rob and other other posters I would like to address the issue of the random temperature corrections.

I think you owe us an explanation. You depict the fact that the temperature corrections are not random as proof of bias or tampering on the side of NASA. What about systematic errors? This is much more likely, as random errors are, by the nature of randomness, impossible to correct.

Are you ignoring this inconvenient question?

Department of Homeland Security website hacked!

Anne van der Bom

Bind parameters anyone?

I suspect these web site programmers build queries by string concatenation instead of properly using bind variables.

Boffins develop '500TB iPod' storage tech

Anne van der Bom


Boy, you really don't understand math

(New) dirt-cheap bots attack Hotmail Captchas

Anne van der Bom


In some perhaps not too distant future we'll have to thank the spammers for the advances in OCR and AI.

Sharp unwraps 'world first' Intel Atom phone

Anne van der Bom


It is rumoured that the governor of California can make calls longer than a minute on this phone, so stop whining.

Global-warming scientist: It's worse than I thought

Anne van der Bom


You say it right: You breathe it OUT at 4.5%-ish. What you breathe IN must be below 4%, otherwise the CO2 levels in your blood will become too high and you run the risk of dying. See the list at:


The IDLH (Immideately Dangerous to Life and Health) for carbon dioxide is 40.000 ppm.

As far as I can see, the link above contains accepted exposure norms for various substances.

By the way: current levels are 380 ppm, so no global warming scare here.

Anne van der Bom

@JonB, poison?

CO2 will sort of kill you at a 4% concentration. For me that sounds pretty poisonous.

What is your definition of a poison? Everything can be poisonous, even oxygen. It's just a matter of concentration. How it kills is not important.

Anne van der Bom

@3x2 sceptics

If find it hugely amusing to see how 90% of the self-proclaimed sceptics are convinced global warming is a scam. Do you see the contradiction? Sceptic - convinced.

A true sceptic is one who is convinced of nothing, but is perpared to believe whatever the facts tell him. And since there is no conclusive proof yet in the climate change debate, a true sceptic stands on neither side.

3x2 don't flatter yourself. You are not a sceptic.

Anne van der Bom

Re: Has everyone forgotten Archimedes?

@Gary F,

It's an exact science, so lets be exactly exact.

Because the density of ice is lower than the water, it rises slightly above the surface of the water. You can imagine that the water produced by the melting of that part of the ice that is above the water, will be spread out over the seas and cause a small rise in sea level.

And sea levels will also rise due to expansion of the warmer water.

Anne van der Bom

@AC, I wonder

"but I wonder if this guy has simply compared CO2 levels and glacier melting and completely disregarded all other variables"

That's probably what you would do and therefore you expect others to do the same.

Oh wait, you even admit it:

"I haven't read this study"

You are not an anonymous coward, but a lazy coward.

Al Gore's green job bonanza - can we afford it?

Anne van der Bom


You probably are quite happy with your half truth, but others are perhaps interested to know the other half of the truth. Which is: coal contains mercury. Using a conventional light bulbs releases around 5 times as much mercury into the envrionment because you use more energy. Myth busted.

My experience with the lifetime of bulbs is very good. They last forever. I bought a small 3 w bulb to serve as a night light for my son when he was a toddler. He's now 10 and since then the damn thing burnt all night every night. That's 7 * 365 * 10 hrs = 25.000+ hrs. My experience with the other bulbs is about the same, but not as impressive. Of course if you're a cheapskate (as you quite happily admit yourself) you're probably buying low quality crap.

Anne van der Bom

Doomsday thinking

I simply don't buy into this modern doomsday type of thinking: renewable energy will wreck our economies and kill millions op people. Make that millions of innocent people.

From the American perspective, the Second World war was an enormous waste of money, never seen before and since. The proposed investments in green technology are nowhere near that. Did the Second World war wreck the US economy?

How much money was wasted on Ronald Reagan's 'Star Wars' pet project? Did it wreck the economy? Landing a man on the Moon?

I sick of all these pessimist fear mongers proclaiming green technology will mean the end of civilization.

LiveLeak pulls anti-Koran documentary

Anne van der Bom

islam, monotheism, ....

@ A J Stiles

That can be further generalised to: Any dogma is potentially dangerous and should not be tolerated in a civilised country.

Only Ubuntu left standing, as Flash vuln fells Vista in Pwn2Own hacking contest

Anne van der Bom

@Dr. Mouse: no Java?

"Servers should not have flashy things (like flash :D or java) installed"

No Java on servers? Where did you get that twisete idea?

Boffinry bigwig puts another boot into biofuels

Anne van der Bom

@Matt - solar panels

"I would also imagine that fields of solar panels may cause their own climate problems when compared to crops"

Well, the logic behind solar panels is to cover roofs with them, not land. And in case we were to put them in the field, could you be a little more precise about what climate problem you foresee?

Anne van der Bom


The credibility of this professor evaporated upon the suggestion to use the electricity to create hydrogen to power our stuff. That's plain stupid. You should store electricity in batteries. It's about three times as efficient. Luckily there are enough car manufacturers that get the idea and forget about hydrogen in favour of battery powered vehicles. The professor has clearly not yet had this insight. Although I agree with him that it is very doubtful that biofuels will really help us.

XCOR challenges Virgin with the Lynx effect

Anne van der Bom


"It means unlocking the material and energy resources and economic opportunities of our solar system for our children"

Wow. I'm deeply impressed.

'Magnet boy' freezes Xbox

Anne van der Bom

Magnetism, static charge. Who cares?

If you don't know your subject - don't write about it. Magnetism is not static electricity.

Software engineer builds straw house for £4k

Anne van der Bom
IT Angle


In Africa they build this in 1 month for 40 pence. Very impressed.

Apple sued over iPhone caller ID

Anne van der Bom

Is it a patent? Is it a user manual?

Suppose I would describe "a device for distributing a load on a rotating axle evenly over two axles in which said device enables the two outgoing axles to spin at different rotational speeds." Although I haven't got a clue on how to achieve this, I patent it. Then some years after that, a smart engineer comes along and invents the diffential, and I sue his ass off for infringing my patent. Wouldn't everybody immediately see the injustice in that? It just doesn't feel right. The engineer in this case is the one that had the bright idea, the engineer did the hard work of proving that his idea could work.

That's how I feel about this patent.

This patent reads like a user manual. The result of a 'wouldn't it be great if there were something that could....' moment.

7000 Leap Year Babies attack Steve Ballmer

Anne van der Bom

Brouwer's got a calendar bug?

"How do you explain to a five-year-old, that they won't receive a birthday card..."

Someone born on the 29th of february will have his first birthday when he turns 4, not 5.

Dutch tax office deletes 730,000 tax returns

Anne van der Bom

Not deleted

According to what I've read about it, the tax returns were not deleted, they were 'unusable'. Meaning to me that they were never correctly stored in the first place. If that is the case, the backups also contain faulty data, rendering them useless.

Paris, 'cos I always wanted to cheer up my post with her image, like all the others do here on The Register, and this is by far the best looking picture of her.

Obituary: HD DVD 2002-2008

Anne van der Bom

Bring Your Own HDD

This 'bring your HDD to the shop' idea that Mr. B came up with is never going to work because it's an awful shopping experience.

If you physically go to a shop to shell out some hard earned cash, you'll want to bring something tangible home with you and experience the satisfaction of unpacking it. We're not talking about groceries here. Buying a BD or DVD is giving yourself a present. That's why content distribution on physical media will be around for a long time.

Toshiba's board to kybosh HD DVD this week?

Anne van der Bom

Product name

For me, this proves once more that a product name can never be underestimated. Blu-ray sounds so much snappier than the boring and lengthy H-D-D-V-D.

French motorwonk savages hybrid cars

Anne van der Bom


Sorry for my post, I actually didn't read your post too well, but was annoyed with a few others that did seem to compare Diesel vs Petrol like they are the same thing.

Anne van der Bom

Diesel vs. petrol


You should know your subject better. Diesel IS NOT petrol. Diesel is a denser fuel that contains more energy per litre, weighs more per litre, costs more crude to produce and emits more co2 per litre.

Don't ever ever compare diesel mpg to petrol mpg 1:1!

57 mpg diesel is comparable in efficiency and CO2 output to a 50 mpg petrol.

Anne van der Bom

Myth sources

One article was already mentioned ('Hummer greener than Prius'). Another fine example is the 'Dust to dust' study by CNW Marketing Research, Inc. Their claims are not verifyable, they disclosed neither their data sources nor their methodology. Counter studies done by different research team paint a very different picture.

So don't be eager to believe either side in this debate.

Scientists warn on climatic 'tipping points'

Anne van der Bom

Trying to fit in with the crowd

There is no problem ... there is no problem ... there is no problem... there is no problem... there is no problem... there is no problem... there is no problem

Nobel Prize winner demands more honesty from peers in green debate

Anne van der Bom


I see a lot of people posting here talking about climate change hysteria. Hysteria? Hysteria is people fighting over the last bottle of water.

The truth? SUV sales are down and hybrid sales are up.

If you call that hysteria, then you're just as guilty of spreading doom scenario's. Facts please.

All blue-eyed people share one common ancestor

Anne van der Bom


"nature is constantly shuffling the human genome, creating a genetic cocktail of human chromosomes and trying out different changes as it does so"

Seems like this professor is an ID believer.

GPS is killing children

Anne van der Bom


I find it incredible how many people actually think kids should be sort of banned from the streets, or at least their mobility strictly restricted. How can they ever get to know the world if they can't go out on their own?

Just stop and think a minute about your own youth. What did you do when you were a kid? Spend all afternoons and weekends playing 'Pong'?

The Electric Car Conspiracy ... that never was

Anne van der Bom


hahahahahahaha. Thanks. It was hilarious!

Anne van der Bom

Better than most people think

To all the electric car sceptics: The electric car is an exceptionally good idea for the following reasons:

1. Mechanical simplicity. No oil changes, leaks of whatever kinds of fluids, worn out belts, clutches, gearboxes. An electric car probably wouldn't need any service at all except for tyre change. Even brake pads can be excluded as an electric car would do electric (regenerative) braking most of the time.

2. Less noise.

3. Better performance. Smoother ride.

4. Less time spent charging than filling up your gas tank. In practice, most people will charge their electric car overnight at home, and will hardly ever have to stop at a charging station.

It seems a lot of the posters here have probably lived under a rock for the past 5 years. Battery technology is improving fast. Long charge times are a thing of the past, lithium batteries are available that can be charged up to 80% in 10 minutes.

The battery may be heavier than a full gas tank but you will save weight on the engine + drive train. And because of regenerative braking, the extra weight doesn' t increase fuel consumption as much as it would in a conventional car.

People saying that an electric car is less efficient clearly don't know what they are talking about. At first glance it seems more efficient to burn fuel in a car directly, instead of burning it in a powerplant, then converting it to electricity and use that to drive the car. The well-to-wheel efficiency of a modern car is below 20%. Modern powerplants can reach 50% efficiency. Even with the grid and battery losses, the overall efficiency of an electric car is better.

The environmental impact of the chemicals in the battery is greatly exaggerated. The risks can be easily contained. This world is awash in batteries: phones, laptops, mp3-players, toys, power tools, shavers. The list goes on and on. These large numbers of small batteries pose a far greater risk of ending up in the environment than smaller numbers of large batteries. The disposal, dismantling and recycling of cars is an industry already responsible for handling nasty stuff (lead-acid batteries, oil, brake fluid). So with the right laws and proper oversight, car batteries should pose no threat at all to the environment.

I would say the only thing that currently holds back the electric car is price. The batteries are simply too expensive, by a factor of 5 I would guess. Most other arguments are nonsense.

By the way, the electric car will not arrive with a bang. My guess is that the Prius will become more electrical with each generation. The current Prius is a gasoline car with some electric stuff. Word has it that the next model will have plug-in capability with an all-electric range of about 20 km. This will improve with each new model, until one day the gasoline engine will become a range extender. Then this range extender will become optional. As less and less people see the benefit of spending money on a range extender, what remains in 20-30 years is an all electric Prius. We will get our electric car by evolution not revolution.