j3n's recent activity

  1. Comment on Alphabet’s drone delivery service Wing hits 100,000 deliveries milestone in ~tech

    j3n
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    I'm a researcher who works more or less directly on working out the legalities of this. I firmly believe we'll have the legalities worked out long before the technology catches up. We've been...

    I'm a researcher who works more or less directly on working out the legalities of this. I firmly believe we'll have the legalities worked out long before the technology catches up. We've been working on this for years and our biggest problem right now is that we have essentially no way to do large scale real-world testing because no one is really ready to launch these vehicle en mass.

    The basic mode of operation is going to be a separate and far more automated/technology based air traffic control system that allows for much more granular clearances to operate.

    As far as technology goes, you hit the nail on the head with the comparison to a helicopter. If you think drones of any kind are some kind of revolutionary commercial technology, ask yourself what use case they are going to fill and then ask yourself how they fill that niche better than a helicopter. I've yet to hear any convincing argument as to why electric multi-rotor vehicles are ever going to be better or cheaper.

    2 votes
  2. Comment on Two percent inflation over the next year: Should you take the over or the under? in ~finance

    j3n
    Link Parent
    I've never heard this before. Does that imply that at 34 I should have fully 1/3 of my retirement funds in bonds? That sounds insanely conservative to me at >30 years from retirement.

    I follow the rule of having your age in bonds, which with these negative real rates, means I have a lot of cash.

    I've never heard this before. Does that imply that at 34 I should have fully 1/3 of my retirement funds in bonds? That sounds insanely conservative to me at >30 years from retirement.

    2 votes
  3. Comment on US railroads should be nationalized in ~enviro

    j3n
    Link Parent
    How about airlines? Deregulation happened a bit too early for me to experience it first hand, but it's my impression that while airline travel might not be as fancy as it once was, deregulation...

    How about airlines? Deregulation happened a bit too early for me to experience it first hand, but it's my impression that while airline travel might not be as fancy as it once was, deregulation has dramatically lowered prices and in so doing dramatically expanded the number of people who can afford to fly for pleasure.

    4 votes
  4. Comment on ‘I’m sorry, but it’s too late’: Alabama doctor on treating unvaccinated, dying COVID patients in ~health.coronavirus

    j3n
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    I wonder what percentage of people even have a primary care doctor? I've gone over 10 years since getting out of the Army without any PCP whatsoever. It's only very recently that I've decided I'm...

    Since she's writing about young healthy people here - how many of them are going to have a substantive relationship with their primary care doctor?

    I wonder what percentage of people even have a primary care doctor? I've gone over 10 years since getting out of the Army without any PCP whatsoever. It's only very recently that I've decided I'm old enough that I should probably start getting an annual physical done. I was well-insured throughout the last 10 years, I just didn't have any reason to go see a doctor.

    9 votes
  5. Comment on The Bootleg Fire in Oregon will likely continue to burn until a "season-ending weather event" extinguishes it in the fall in ~enviro

    j3n
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    I'm paying very close attention to this fire since it's about 15 miles East of my house. I don't think the headline is true simply because the fire is moving so fast that it's going to run out of...

    I'm paying very close attention to this fire since it's about 15 miles East of my house. I don't think the headline is true simply because the fire is moving so fast that it's going to run out of forest to burn relatively soon. The fire has been moving almost entirely to the East, towards the desert. It seems like firefighters have maybe managed to contain it along the Southeastern flank in the last couple of days, but even if jumps those lines, it can only roughly double in size before it runs out of trees to burn.

    There is still plenty of active fire on the Northern edge, so a shift in the winds could change things dramatically, but so far the weather has been quite stable.

    1 vote
  6. Comment on Macron and Le Pen lose out as French voters shun local elections: Abstention rate estimated at 68%, and exit polls suggest Le Pen’s National Rally failed to get expected support in ~news

    j3n
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    Does France not do some form of vote by mail? In 15 years as a voter in 2 US states, I have yet to physically set foot in a polling place.

    Does France not do some form of vote by mail? In 15 years as a voter in 2 US states, I have yet to physically set foot in a polling place.

    2 votes
  7. Comment on Is gerrymandering about to become more difficult? in ~misc

    j3n
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    I cannot for the life of me understand why we're having this conversation aside from sheer unmitigated partisan corruption of the US political system. It would be trivial to come up with a...

    I cannot for the life of me understand why we're having this conversation aside from sheer unmitigated partisan corruption of the US political system. It would be trivial to come up with a mathematical model for drawing districts that is nonpartisan and at least somewhat better than letting politicians do it.

    1 vote
  8. Comment on Southwest's new climate peril in ~enviro

    j3n
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    (Note that this is about the Southwest, i.e. the geographical region, not the airline.)

    (Note that this is about the Southwest, i.e. the geographical region, not the airline.)

    5 votes
  9. Comment on California mass shooting: Rail employee ‘shoots dead eight and himself’ as suspect’s house found on fire in ~news

    j3n
    Link Parent
    That much we can agree on.

    I don't have the energy or mental fortitude required to get into a huge, prolonged debate over this.

    That much we can agree on.

    1 vote
  10. Comment on California mass shooting: Rail employee ‘shoots dead eight and himself’ as suspect’s house found on fire in ~news

    j3n
    Link Parent
    I mean, that's basically the dominant form of gun control in the US. Take my former state of residence for example, which has a hard on for banning scary looking guns. I had a completely...

    As for people assigning agency to guns independent of their owners, I'll throw it back... who is really doing that?

    I mean, that's basically the dominant form of gun control in the US. Take my former state of residence for example, which has a hard on for banning scary looking guns. I had a completely California legal AR-15 that was probably about 80% as capable of mass murder as my military issued M4 was. When I moved to Oregon, I removed the magazine lock, making it probably about 95% as capable. Removing the mag lock was a 10 minute job that benefits from but doesn't really require any specialized tools. This is pure theater that focuses on the tool and not the person behind it. There is virtually no functional difference between an "assault rifle" and a "small capacity semi-auto rifle" in the hands of an experienced shooter.

    The only reasonable stance on gun control IMO is either ban all firearms or to focus entirely on targeting the human aspect of gun violence. I'm all for universal background checks and restricting firearms ownership for people who have demonstrated a danger to others. Banning scary looking guns is the kind of measure that is worse than useless because it lets people feel like they're doing something without actually doing anything more than annoying law abiding hobbyists.

    7 votes
  11. Comment on California mass shooting: Rail employee ‘shoots dead eight and himself’ as suspect’s house found on fire in ~news

    j3n
    Link Parent
    Honestly, who thinks that? I own several guns, have a concealed carry permit, and carry a gun most of the time. My actions if I found myself in the middle of a mass shooting would be highly...

    If this were true, how come we still have so many shootings?

    Honestly, who thinks that? I own several guns, have a concealed carry permit, and carry a gun most of the time. My actions if I found myself in the middle of a mass shooting would be highly situationaly dependent. I think there's a very high probability that I would not be in a position where I felt I could safely engage the shooter.

    I own and carry guns for 3 basic reasons.

    1. I'm former active duty military. I'm trained and qualified to carry and feel completely comfortable doing so. I carry a pocket knife and a Leatherman pretty much all the time too. I don't think of a gun as any different. All three are potentially deadly weapons in some circumstances, and useful tools in others.

    2. Target shooting is a fun hobby.

    3. I live in a rural part of a rural county, where large wildlife is common and the Sheriff won't show up for hours, if at all, when called.

    Guns are important to my life in the same way that a chainsaw, a computer, woodworking tools, kitchen knives and so forth are "important to my life". Guns are fundamentally nothing more than chunks of metal and plastic and I really don't understand why they are assigned so much agency independent of the people that use them.

    5 votes
  12. Comment on Seven rural counties in Oregon have voted in favor of seceding to Idaho in ~news

    j3n
    Link Parent
    There was some pretty significant national context to that though. I don't think it's comparable at all. The article itself seems to answer the question in the last paragraph: Based on that, it...

    There was some pretty significant national context to that though. I don't think it's comparable at all. The article itself seems to answer the question in the last paragraph:

    Congress has only approved measures to change state lines on three occasions: Kentucky was carved out of territory previously owned by Virginia in 1792. Maine was carved out of Massachusetts in 1820. And West Virginia was admitted to the union in 1863, in the midst of the Civil War, as Union counties separated themselves from the Confederacy.

    Based on that, it seems that there is no precedent for part of a state switching to another state, only new states being formed from land already covered by an existing state. I suppose that could come about as part of some weird deal where DC or PR is admitted alongside East Oregon to keep the knife-edge balance in the Senate.

    5 votes
  13. Comment on Seven rural counties in Oregon have voted in favor of seceding to Idaho in ~news

    j3n
    Link Parent
    Oregonian not from one of the counties that voted, but from one that's usually included in these secessionist fantasy maps. I can't give any context for the Western half of the state, but I...

    Oregonian not from one of the counties that voted, but from one that's usually included in these secessionist fantasy maps. I can't give any context for the Western half of the state, but I sincerely hope they don't let it happen. I haven't spent a lot of time digging in to it, but my impression is that this is pretty much economic suicide for a region that's barely limping along on economic life support as it is.

    6 votes
  14. Comment on The secret history of Angostura Bitters in ~food

    j3n
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    God I hate the internet so much some days. Why does it have to be a "secret" history? If it's so secret, surely it wouldn't be written up in a BBC article? But as someone who cares enough to have...

    God I hate the internet so much some days. Why does it have to be a "secret" history? If it's so secret, surely it wouldn't be written up in a BBC article? But as someone who cares enough to have just finished renovating my kitchen island to include a wet bar and a solid walnut bar top, I figured I'd give this a shot. I made it to the second paragraph.

    Produced since the 19th Century, Angostura Bitters is as important to the bartender as salt is to the chef. Without it, there would be no Manhattan or Old Fashioned or Whisky Sour.

    I've never been paid to bar tend, but I have worked as a professional cook, and I'd still consider myself a pretty sophisticated hobbyist cook and bartender. Angostura Bitters are more like smoked paprika than salt. An essential part of a well rounded bar, not something that goes in literally every drink. And they apparently can't even come up with three drinks that need it since a Whisky Sour doesn't even have any kind of bitters in it.

    Life is too short to waste time on lazy writers, not matter how interesting the subject.

    6 votes
  15. Comment on How to design a sailing ship for the 21st century? in ~enviro

    j3n
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    An interesting concept. I was totally unaware that there are companies operating sail cargo ships in the current century. The conclusion is a little disheartening though. That seems wildly...

    An interesting concept. I was totally unaware that there are companies operating sail cargo ships in the current century. The conclusion is a little disheartening though.

    The international ocean freight trade increased from 4 billion tonnes of cargo in 1990 to 11.2 billion tonnes in 2019...

    That seems wildly unsustainable without some kind of fundamental breakthrough technology that makes shipping much cheaper in terms of ecological impact. Without that theoretical breakthrough, it seems we need a huge curtailment of international cargo of all kinds, which I very much doubt is forthcoming.

    6 votes
  16. Comment on In the Klamath Basin, pretty much everybody’s feeling the pain in ~enviro

    j3n
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    I've owned a house in Klamath county for 3 years now and lived here full time since last October. I still don't really get all of the nuances of the water situation here. On the one hand, you have...

    I've owned a house in Klamath county for 3 years now and lived here full time since last October. I still don't really get all of the nuances of the water situation here. On the one hand, you have the need to keep the water level in Upper Klamath lake high enough to support the sucker fish, which are important to the local tribes' traditional way of life, but on the other hand the lake is so polluted by upstream agricultural runoff that you virtually never see boats or other recreation on the lake, and mass die offs following algae blooms are common.

    I don't see what realistic option there is besides moving agriculture out of the dry climates in California and Oregon. There just isn't enough water to support it anymore.

    6 votes
  17. Comment on Biden: “Great day for America;” Vaccinated can largely ditch masks in ~health.coronavirus

  18. Comment on Biden: “Great day for America;” Vaccinated can largely ditch masks in ~health.coronavirus

    j3n
    Link Parent
    The CDC doesn't say anything at all about requirements. The CDC is saying that they've collected enough information to conclude that it's not medically necessary for vaccinated people to wear...

    The CDC doesn't say anything at all about requirements. The CDC is saying that they've collected enough information to conclude that it's not medically necessary for vaccinated people to wear masks in most circumstances. That's it. Even at the Federal level, individual agencies still have to update their internal rules to lift mask requirements.

    This is great news, but it doesn't change requirements at all on its own.

    11 votes
  19. Comment on Stranded sailor allowed to leave abandoned ship after four years in ~news

    j3n
    Link Parent
    September 2019 - April 2021 is 19 months, pretty damn close to 2 years...

    September 2019 - April 2021 is 19 months, pretty damn close to 2 years...

    5 votes
  20. Comment on Understanding the AeroPress (Episode #1) in ~food

    j3n
    Link Parent
    Likewise. I think I own (or at least have owned at some point) just about every coffee brewing apparatus known to man. If I want espresso, there's no substitute for a decent espresso maker. If I...

    Likewise. I think I own (or at least have owned at some point) just about every coffee brewing apparatus known to man. If I want espresso, there's no substitute for a decent espresso maker. If I want brewed coffee, french press is the undisputed king in my book. For me, there is no in between. Products like aeropress and Moka pots fill a niche that I don't ever find myself craving.

    3 votes