* Posts by Solviva

241 publicly visible posts • joined 8 Dec 2017


Energy being expensive and trickier to source is good news ... for renewables

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: How much electricity ?

Saw a post on the faceache from a company claiming to be building a fence of vertical solar panels at FRA airport, so as to reduce shading and the impact to the flora and fauna. Seriously?!?! Waste the resources to build a perfectly capable solar panel, then nobble it by mounting it vertically. Why not use fewer solar panels, mounted correctly to get the same equivalent power, thus needing less panels and shading the same amount of area. Point being if you're panel isn't creating shade then it's not collecting energy.

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: How much electricity ?

"(The difference between the UK doing nothing and the UK doing its maximum to reduce greenhouse emissions would be less than 0.1C on the global average temperature - the UK only emits 1.1% of the worlds greenhouse gases.)"

Oy that's Sweden's job to punish their citizens such that should Sweden's emissions be 0 then the overall difference to the global emissions would be lost in the error bars. Ideas like the plastic bag tax because plastic ends up in the ocean and kills the fishes. When was the last time you threw your plastic bags in the ocean? Or just threw them in the nature i.e, not in the rubbish or recycling where they don't end up in the ocean. Sounds green on paper, actual difference? 0.

Solviva Bronze badge

Yes please more unstable energy!

Another 'problem' with renewables I've recently heard of - when the wind blows then the wind doth blow. Windfarms produce 'free' energy by the bucket load. The energy markets turn round and say hey stop sending us so much energy, spot price dives (sometimes negative) so the wind farm owners get a pittance for their energy but consumers momentarily happy. Then the wind stops, prices go up, wind farm owners get a pretty penny per unit now, times almost 0 produced units.

Once again, the energy crisis isn't completely down to Putin, it's just been helped along by Putin thanks to terrible 'green' (aren't nuclear fuel rods /radioactive things often portayed as glowing green? :) decisions. Hint hint shutting down nuclear reactors early, deciding Russia's a great place to rely on for (almost?) 100% of your gas supplies.

You could say it's like you've been driving your car for 30 years and never had an accident, so why carry around the weight of seatbelts that serve no purpose. Get rid of the airbags while you're at it (explosives are dangerous afterall). You've been warned they do serve a purpose even if you don't perceive any use from them. Then unfortunately a moose (the 4 legged creature) runs out in front of you and you plow straight into her. You go splat thanks to lack of seatbelts and airbag, but if it wasn't for Mrs Moose you'd be fine!

Square Kilometre Array Observatory construction commences

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Local Business Forums

Does said Construction Mafia demand teachers build their schools? Taxi drivers build their taxis?

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: You can run but you can't hide

It's a phased array so the signal from one satellite arriving at one antenna will not correlate with the same signal arriving at a different antenna (unless they set the delays such that they are focusing on said satellite). It does increase the noise though, so SNR suffers. Fortunately with radio astronomy, for most objects you can simply spend more time on the object to get more signal.

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: I wonder how they are getting the data off site?

It's fiber all the way - 100GbE out from the two sites (then carried over links to the various continents with data centres who ingest the data) so by todays standard nothing particularly special, by the time it's complete we'll probably be seeing 100 GbE ports on consumer devices :)

Windows 11 runs on fewer than 1 in 6 PCs

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Windows 11 runs on fewer than 1 in 6 PCs

Fewer (implying a countable whole number), than 1, avoiding going negative is 0, so Windows runs on 0 in 6 PCs?

DisplayPort standards bods school USB standards bods with latest revision

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Are they trying to kill off Thunderbolt?

Whilst Ethernet negotiates itself from low to very high, USB 1-2 and USB 3+ are actually separate buses. You could have a port that supports only USB 3+ and not USB 2-.

Things get even muddier when using adapters. I have a Samsung S8 that seems to have a not uncommon problem whereby it detects liquid if charging with a C-A cable and refuses to charge. Works perfectly with a C-C cable.

Techmoan recently posted a video where he also found some Minidiscs refused to work with some software when plugged into an A port (USB-A devices), but worked fine when using an A-C cable plugged into a USB-C port (still using the USB-A bus on the host side).

Solviva Bronze badge

Back in the day God (USB Forum) created USB, which then had two flavours - low speed and full speed. Both being USB 1 - woe betide you got confused with a USB 1 peripheral/hub that wasn't what you expected. Then came USB 2, using the same cables/ports, but with a new colloquial name High Speed. Then came USB 3 with a same-looking USB-A connector (with more pins and typically blue), along with USB-C ports.

Then came a plethora of things using the USB-C port, but offering a multitude of different capabilities, USB3, USB4, Thunderbolt... Not necessarily a bad thing, but if you have a port supporting one of these, it's not instantly clear what subset of features your port has. Some laptops only allow charging on one of the USB-C ports just to confuse things more. If your device has multiple USB-C ports, why should they not all be identical?

To me it seems a mess, I mean it's nice that you can use the same USB-C port for charging the device as well as charging devices from it. Using the same ports for Thunderbolt - if they support it, but the naming conventions just seem wrong. Not that I have any better ideas though :)

Solviva Bronze badge

DVI ports can carry both analogue on the bladed pins, as well as digital on the pinny pins. You can then take VGA from a DVI and HDMI from DVI, but HDMI and VGA are two rather different things, hence you need an extra adapter from HDMI <-> VGA.

Next-gen Thunderbolt capable of 120Gbps for 8K displays

Solviva Bronze badge

Superset of USB 4 v2, so is this USB 4 v2+ or USB 4 v3 or USB 4 v2.1 or USB 4 v2 v2 or USB 4 v2 superduperness?

Water pipes hold flood of untapped electricity potential

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: The elephant in the water pipe?

Humans make a fair bit of heat, insulate them and indeed they feel warm. Add a little extra heat input and get your own personal sauna as you say :)

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Virtual Inertia (again)

Oversimplication it may be, but it's not wrong.

Indeed for the traditional Corrie-break-kettle-boil moments (which were so predictable they can be ignored) you need a PDQ ramp up of supply. For solar and wind - do you pray to Njord for some wind when this happens? Pray to Sol if it's daytime?

Wind & Solar most definitely have their place in modern energy production, but without any ballast to support their and the consumers' fluctuations then you need a rather responsive on-line generator that can ramp up (or down) - gas, nuclear, hydro (coal & oil if you're that way inclined).

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: This is ridiculous.

They seem to be a relic from when we stored resources vs getting them on demand / just in time. Gasometers, water towers....

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: It is not free energy.

If you're on an unmetered water supply you could make 'free' energy!

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Magic Energy?

"virtual inertia" love that! Describes well solar & wind.

The Grid relies on inertia from the large generators to keep the frequency stable - replace these with unstable renewables and expect consequences. Unfortunately most politicians don't understand that and seem to assume you can replace an X GW nuclear generator with X+(some extra capacity) renewables and nobody will notice (or just shut down the dirty nuke plants, don't plan for any replacement (yeah energy comes if you dream enough) and bury your head in the sand blaming Putin). Sweden + Germany spring to mind....

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: The elephant in the water pipe?

Sadly I don't get to enjoy youtube ads but are these the miniature ca 500W resistive heaters that strangely produce 500W of heat, but use only 500W and so heat your room much cheaper than a say 2kW heater [which provides 4x the heat]. Magic!

California legalizes digital license plates for all vehicles

Solviva Bronze badge

That's why my "may be wrong" clause was there :)

Sweden has plates and inspections for the smallest of trailers. From one end of the spectrum to the other!

Solviva Bronze badge

I think the UK is an exception in Europe (may be wrong) whereby trailers must display the reg of the towing vehicle - most/rest of Europe trailers have their own reg. Potentially something like this could work for UK trailer rentals, but at $20/month I think not!

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Just what we need....

For just $20 a month, we'll ensure your plate remains visible.

Isn't that how a protection racket works?

Linux kernel 6.0 debuts, Linus Torvalds teases ‘core new things’ coming in version 6.1

Solviva Bronze badge

If major releases tend to occur once Linus runs out of digits, what happens post Linux 19.19 - will Linus need to look into getting extra digits surgically applied?

Update your Tesla now before the windows put your fingers in a pinch

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: I believe worse would be....

Once gave a guy a lift to work for a while. He had previously spent time at Bosch and was the lead of their anti-pinch group (or something like that).

Me never having heard of such things, he proceeded to show how wonderful my car is with his Bosch anti-pinch and proceeded to demonstrate what it actually can do with me watching nervously on as he did some unusual things with the window...

It's not as simple as sensing an opposing force, as this could be caused by going over a bump on the road, so if you thump down on the window as it's coming up, it ignores you. But similarly if something is being squashed and you are going over bumps then it has to detect this too. Also an ageing mechanism/dirty door frame may cause extra load on the motor but this also must be differentiated from a pinching event (parent's Corsa seems to be missing this bit as it always gets to 80%ish and reverses).

Intel's stock Raptor Lake chip will do 6GHz and overclock another 25%, if it keeps cool

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Will you start the fans, please!

Richard 12, not O'Brien?

Better hope you collect significantly more gold than silver tokens if you want to pay the leccy bill after running 8 GHz for a few mins!

Apple adds M1 Mac notebooks to self-repair scheme

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: If I get this right…

This sounds like you can now buy replacement screens - the uppercase/battery/trackpad has been available already and just needs a set of screwdrivers. At least at work we could order the uppercase and I swapped it out myself to replace the battery about 5 years ago.

Apple debuts iPhone 14, Watch 8, other sparkly things

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: The UK price isn't actually that bad.

Problem parsing the phrase "current FX rates"?

If you're expecting the £ to plummet then that's only going to make the UK price look even better compared to rest of the world.

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Pricing-in the anticipated exchange rate after the new UK Govt Economic Policy announcements?

The UK price isn't actually that bad. Factor in the included 20% VAT, then the potential for US tax on top of the $999.

Compared to prices in other European countries the UK actually has the cheapest that I've seen at the current FX rates (€1299 (DE) - £1128, 14995 SEK - £1217, 13390 NOK - £1215, 6499 PLN - £1194.

Solviva Bronze badge

"Both phones include the Crash Detection capability – for force of up to 256 Gs – found in the latest Apple Watch lineup."

Having watched this love-in show, I found their crash detection awfully Clippy-ish - "It looks like you've been in a crash! Calling Emergency services, you have 10 seconds to cancel..."

And up to 256 Gs? If you hit 200+ G does it change to "It looks like you've been in a rather high G crash, game over."

Terminal downgrade saves the day after a client/server heist

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: If it was a Doge truck...

If there was a welshman with the male sheep driving the dodge truck, is there potential for a ram ram Ram ram RAM raid?

Solviva Bronze badge

In the innocent times of the Swedish 90s, the place I'm at now got broken into, and all they left with was lots and lots of RAM chips from the servers and workstations, probably SIMMS of a few MB each :)

So like any company short of a few MBs of RAM would do, they ordered in replacements and fitted them to get everything going again. Apparently it didn't take long for the thieves to know this is exactly what would happen, as the new RAM was plundered not long after. Cue a third order, along with some better security!

Convicted felon busted for 3D printing gun parts

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: I'm pro-gun

Adding to your question with a related possibly stupid question - if you angle the gun sideways, does it still recoil vertically. or laterally now so you get a horizontal spray of bullets at the same height?

Braking news: Cops slammed for spamming Waze to slow drivers down

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: "Traffic cops in Surrey, England,"

In Lincolnshire they've obviously had a lot of influence from the US having named various areas like Boston, New York, Newark. Always confusing trying to work out which one somebody is talking about if the country isn't specified!

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Interesting difference in attitude

On the M60/M62 last month.

Overhead signs showed 40.

100m after them a big 50 in the central reservation.

Next overhead gantry off completely (not showing the end of restrictions sign, just plain off).

Next overhead gantry 60.

Followed by another big 50 in the central reservation.

So did the speed really change after each of these or WTF?

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: feels valid to me

"t's definitely a step up from the cars you see zooming around which have somehow got mud splattered all over their boot, but nowhere else - and which has conveniently happened to completely cover the licence plate..."

I've got a Volvo V40 with an automatic number plate hiding feature. When driving in the wet, you'd expect spray kicked up by the wheels and general movement of the car would be thrown out behind the car and land on the car behind. Not this car! Any spray seems to do a magic U-turn and stick to the back of the car, whilst the rest of the car stays quite clean. When it's not raining but the road's wet, I need to keep the rear wiper on if I want to look out the back.

Being the good citizen that I am, I do keep an eye on these and wipe the plate clean when it starts getting a little dirty, but that then has the other effect that the black on the letters has started rubbing off (Swedish plate).

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Interesting difference in attitude

In Sweden they're blue vertical sausage shaped things. If there's just a single one, then some distance I think 500m before then there's a blue sign warning you of said camera. If there's several in a stretch then it will be cameras 1-8km or something. Of course you've got the police hiding behind the bushes with no warning, but if you're doing the correct speed there's nothing to worry about.

All I wish and this applies to all countries, is that they would include a speed repeater sign before the cameras so you don't get folk unnecessarily breaking as they aren't sure what the speed limit is, even if it is 95% just for reassurance as you probably are aware of the limit.

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Technically correct

I got involuntarily added to a 'where are the popo' faceache group, I didn't accept neither did I decline but it seems passivity is as good as accepting.

Always amuses/amazes me everytime somebody posts 'popo at xxx, drive safely/carefully!'. Err shouldn't you be driving safely regardless of police presence or not? Maybe I'm just odd...

California asks people not to charge EVs during heatwave

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Har Har

Germany? Sweden?

Germany "Shut up Trump, we know better than you, Russian gas is great thanks!" *ahem*

Sweden "Renewables rock, let's shut down our perfectly good reactors with years left on them" proceeds to fire up the 'reserve' oil power station, burning a measly 140 000 l oil / hour all summer.

Yeah politicians are smart sometimes...

MX Linux 21.2: Middleweight Debian-based distro is well worth a look

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: does not use systemd, but has it installed... ?

Not NVIDIA, it's udev (or systemd-udevd) that many things depend upon.

Systemd sucked the independent udev into systemd thus making some traces of systemd almost essential for a modern working system. Gentoo forked udev at this stage (called it eudev) and maintain a fully systemd-free udev equivalent.

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: @Pirate Dave

systemd-neuter-d maybe

Ubuntu Linux 18.04 systemd security patch breaks DNS in Microsoft Azure

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Remind me again?

Try Gentoo then :)

They forked udev from the systemd-udev to their own systemdless-udev so if you don't want systemd and need udev then no systemd is pulled in.

Or point the MX-Linux-21 folks towards this beautiful free udev.

Google Play to ban Android VPN apps from interfering with ads

Solviva Bronze badge


Amazon devices already have this policy. NordVPN (probably others too) offer a non-ad blocking VPN app in the Amazon store, with a notice if you want ad-blocking you need to download and install that version yourself. So sounds like the same will happen with regular Android VPN apps, you just need to sideload the ad-blocking version if that's what you want. The only restriction is they aren't allowed in the Play Shop.

Germany orders Sept 1 shutdown of digital ad displays to save gas

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Pointless laws are pointless

Funny, I'd say if you go ask a random person 'what is Chernobyl' you'd get a high percentage who know what it is. The nuclear industry isn't conveniently not mentioning it, it's so well known you don't need to mention it.

You could compare it to the solar industry conveniently not mentioning solar panels don't work at night, or the windmill crowd omitting to tell us the wind doesn't always blow.

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Energiewende...

Similarly in Greta's own back yard the Green party had the foresight to push through the early shut down of the dirty expensive* nuclear plants in southern Sweden, thus leading to the squeaky clean oil fired plant in Karlshamn, usually used to balance out load during the winter months, running at full pelt through the summer (to feed energy to mainland Europe, not for Swedish use).

And just this weekend the Greens in a desparate attempt to hang on to some power (elections finally in 2 weeks), accused all the center to right parties of being tin-foiled hatted as they wanted to plan re-opening/new nuclear stations in their manifestos. Apparently that's not going to solve the energy crisis today - well yes, you don't build a power station in a week, or year, but who was it that lead to the fully capable nuclear plants being shutdown early? Hmm.

*expensive thanks to the extra tax the Greens helped to place on power produced by them dirty nuke plants, thus making them financially unviable.

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Exceptions for such dual-purpose signs have been arranged.

In Gothenburg in the last couple of years they've decided it was a good idea to replace several of those static major road signs with... Incredibly bright (so you can see when the competing light from the sun shines on them) LED displays, shining brightly all day long (previously they would be lit for free by the sun during the day).

Yes, those signs which are updated every decade or so, and if they need a short update for diversions then send a man on a crane in the middle of the night to put up a sticker on them. It's almost like they're waiting for some youngster to hack them and display <favourite naughty website> to passing drivers.

Nuclear power is the climate superhero too nervous to wear its cape

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Re: Exclusion Zone

And the wind turbine lobbyists should lead the way with a full size turbine in their back yards.

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Waste

In a closed system the laws of physics apply such that you can not create or destroy energy, just change its form.

A reservoir clearly is not a closed system - water freely flows into it from the sky/land (and evaporates too), therefore > 100% efficiency in terms of work done pumping some water up to the reservoir is less than the energy created by flowing more water than was pumped up, down again, is possible.

Microwaved fish could help scientists create sustainable LEDs

Solviva Bronze badge

Smells like a candidate for an Ig Nobel!

A character catastrophe for a joker working his last day

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Do what?

As evidenced in the story, it seems like they didn't know exactly what they were doing and were only being human :)

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Do what?

Yes it was added to the shutdown command, but the fix as written didn't specify what command was requesting confirmation. So user thinks they're just sending a message, sees a message asking if they really want to do *this*, without saying what "this" is.

Solviva Bronze badge

Re: Do what?

In that case you are sending a message and I guess there's nothing else you could be doing when you hit enter?

In the story, the user was indeed sending a message but unknowingly invoked shutdown, and so shutdown was initiated with no confirmation.

The fix sounds like it just confirms you want to do what you *think* you're doing, i.e. in this case sending a message, rather than confirming that you want to do what you're actually doing, i.e. unintended shutdown tagged on to the end of a message.

Solviva Bronze badge

Do what?

A system upgrade turned up within days to add a simple prompt [to the shutdown command]: "Do you really want to do this?"

Do I really want to send that message I just wrote? Yes of course!

Hope the confirmation message was actually a little more verbose...