Elderly Cynic

Elderly Cynic

  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    Interesting. I note that he favours MOND, which is one model that assumes Einstein's formula breaks down in its limits, just as Newton's did. There are also such variations, which get rid of event horizons and all the problems they...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    Interesting. Unlike Tipler cylinders that is, in theory, realisable. While determinism in science is so, so, Victorian, any breach in causality would cause most people's heads to explode - it's fundamental to our model of the universe, scientific method and...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    I could easily afford much more than that, but still don't have one, for very good reasons :-) But it's not really the point; yes, that's certainly a possible (and even likely) path. But I can see a lot of...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    Not inventing a completely new class of substance unobservable except via its finagle factor pervading the universe (whether it be quintessence, aether or dark matter) is definitely simpler, in at least one sense. And you are showing your biasses again....
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    I said rear gear, not least because the context was electric assistance, especially for very steep hills. It isn't possible for that to drive THROUGH a Pinion gear, without extensive engineering, so any assistance would have to drive the wheel...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    It was concealed in a just not-crappy enough way for them to get away with it :-) They had had a nod and a wink from several of the most critical governments but, when it was exposed, those same governments...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    That is a straw man argument, as well as a gross misrepresentation of what I said. Please stop it. If you want to ask a serious question, reread what I said first....
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    It depends very much on the objectives programmed into the AI - note that I said objectives, so that includes 'machine learning'. The danger is that they will include the current attitude of most UK (and USA?) police forces that...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    Yes and no. It's a matter of degree. When something is operating at 90% of capacity, an extra 20% load IS catastrophic - and those figures are realistic in at least many areas. Only some supermarkets have parking for cars...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    That sounds awfully like you have been drinking the American Dream Kool-Aid! Yes, that is happening, but it doesn't change my point about the extra land area and electric distribution needed. It's irrelevant whether the fuelling stations are attached to...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    It's exaggerated, true, but not nonsense. There are surprisingly eminent professors who believe that some of the dogmas are mistaken and the speculative extrapolations based on them are scientifically crap, but have to keep quiet about saying so to avoid...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    Let's assume you have waved your magic wand and got effective demand management, and built charging points into most residential car parks; that probably resolves 90% of the commuting and shopping requirements for those of us in the leafy suburbs....
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    Sorry - I haven't kept them. They definitely weren't cognitive psychology, but were analyses of the statistics, such as they are. The real trouble is that there is damn little data on non-motorised road use (both usage and injury rates)...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    If I was really troubled by hills I'd be more inclined to buy a front hub motor that was geared to cut out at 8-10kph and was at peak efficiency around 5-6kph. So would I - if one existed. As...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    Increasingly Russia, with the USA telling us we should use its fracking-derived stuff....
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    A 3-speed is actually 1.79:1, and the best rear gear is a Rohloff with 5.26:1 (I have one). I ride a recumbent trike when touring, so falling off and starting aren't the problem. But electric assist bottom bracket motors are...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    It was pointed out some time ago that, if every automotive feature had saved as many lives as it was claimed to, driving would now lead to the resurrection of the dead....
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    No. 250 watts will push 100 Kg up a 25% slope at 2.25 MPH, which needs a 12.6" gear at 60 RPM. For practical use by 60 RPM riders, the top gear must be at least 90" (i.e. 16 MPH),...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    I don't, and have some observational data to back up my comment, and have seen more. Your last comment shows your prejudices - you may regard statisticians and risk analysts as The Enemy, but is those people I was referring...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    There is an increasing belief among the people who analyse such things that those features have increased danger as much as they have reduced it. Because of those, people now driver faster, further, and often closer to the edge. That...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    Yes, that's my understanding, too. So you need one of those for every garage with high-speed charging facilities, and more powerful ones for the main motorway and trunk road ones. Adding 20% capacity to the UK's 11 and 33 KV...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    I merely noted them in passing, when I saw the papers and other reliable references. I can remember that one was written by a Dr I. Drummond. I am fully aware of what you base your claims on, and I...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    Oh, really? That's true while they are rarely used. But think further. 30 minutes rather than 5 at the 'pump' needs 6 times the number of stations; even smallish garages have 4 stations nowadays, so will need at least 20....
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    It's a term that has been in common use for decades. While, yes, it means what you say, the Microsoft suite positively encourages both those deficiencies and the bloated file size, and there is a strong correlation between the two...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    Actually, there IS evidence for the 'supernatural', in that many of the explorer/scientist/observers who are regarded as reliable have reported such things. A theory that explains it (which I thought of a long time back, but had to keep quiet...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    The problem is the 250 watt nominal limit; that's OK for 15% hills, but doesn't cut the mustard for steeper ones; motors burn out if worked too hard at too low an RPM. Do the calculations, as Pigeon and I...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    Actually, no, you aren't. There are several alternative theories, based on the observation that the currently, er, favoured model is a stack of speculations. If any one of those speculations is wrong, the effects can be explained in other ways....
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    Er, you are off by more than you think! It's c. 6 miles thick at sea-level pressure, but that's minor. Even on the Ringworld, that holds, because both the centrifugal force and gravity operate at right angles to the ring,...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    but it's not clear to me that human manure is an adequate replacement for seabird manure It depends a great deal on the soil and rainfall, that I know, but there is always some leaching, especially of the volatile components...
  • Commented on Why I barely read SF these days
    Yes. Social phenomena are a bit more complicated than statistics, but I agree. I have done that exercise a few times, but am a ghastly wordsmith and worse politician, so it never got further than thought exercises....
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