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Welcome to Red Slime, the personal journal of Orange Claymore. This site contains work I have done over the years, audio and video. Things i like to do are as followed; skateboarding, computers, video games, listening to bad music, guns and creating music (check noise section). I also pass live feeds of interesting and related topics. Explore and have fun.

UPDATE: Redslime has now branched off into a recording studio named “The Loft”. New updates and posts coming soon.

Welcome to the Rural Model Town That Wants to Build a Hyperloop Utopia

Welcome to the Rural Model Town That Wants to Build a Hyperloop Utopia

What do cities look like in the world of Hyperloop transit? Will supersonic travel turn our cities into vast, intermodal suburbs? And what about the edge towns that once bled into the country, fed by car travel—will they empty out and decay, eliminated by a new form of transportation that bypasses them?

Oddly enough, the first test of Elon Musk’s open source design may be built in a planned village that looks more like a vision of 1950s suburbia. It’s called Quay Valley, and it’s a “21st century model town” planned on a 7,500-acre piece of empty land between LA and San Francisco. It’s the place where Hyperloop Transportation Technologies—the group of engineers who set out to build a Hyperloop last year—has chosen to build a $100 million mockup of the project, eventually to run between the two cities.

“The air is cleaner, the water is purer, the people are healthier, life is more abundant and residents are enriched by the culture,” says Quay Valley’s sale material [PDF]. There will be tree-lined streets, organic farms, even a village green. There will be three themed resort hotels (the project is advised by two former Disney execs) and several million square feet of boutique retail and commercial space. It will sit directly alongside Interstate 5, the freeway that runs between San Francisco and LA, and be populated by long-distance commuters from each city. It will be a solar town where no homeowner ever pays an electricity bill.

And residents will park nearby and take the Hyperloop around town.

Welcome to Hypertopia

Quay Valley is named after its developer, a serial entrepreneur called Quay Hays, who told me on Friday that his plan for the city of the future is the result of years of research and discussions with power companies, home builders, and other specialists.

“When we first started the project, we would say we want to take this approach of being sustainable and peoples’ eyes would glaze over,” he says. “But everything’s changed now, and people understand the nature of disruption.”

Welcome to the Rural Model Town That Wants to Build a Hyperloop Utopia

Kings County, California, the county where Quay Valley is proposed.

Quay Valley has actually been planned for eight years, delayed both by the economic downturn and a long legal battle over water rights, from which Quay recently emerged victorious with a $128.6 million settlement. Back before the crash, the development had less of a “ecotopia” bent and more of a sports entertainment focus: There were once plans for a motor speedway and a boat racing lagoon, according to SF Gate, which published a story about Hays’ past in the movie industry and publishing world back in 2007, just before the project was put on hold.

Post-crash, the car racing and boating have been replaced with a sustainable features, like solar power and rainwater collection. Quay Valley’s sales material tips its hat to “new ruralism,” an idea in which urban planning is based around local agricultural production and natural resources.

“I don’t consider anything we’re doing futuristic, I just consider it current,” Hays told me, saying that the building is scheduled to start in 2016. This month, Hays restarted the process of re-zoning its “grazing land” to allow residential development, the first step in the process of getting the development off the ground.

Welcome to the Rural Model Town That Wants to Build a Hyperloop Utopia

Not everyone is happy about another ground-up development in a part of the world where water is already badly needed and sprawl is creeping. Speaking to the Fresno Bee, the former city manager of Fresno called the project “insanity,” saying “I don’t think it makes any sense from a land-use standpoint to have new cities popping up that aren’t connected to city infrastructure.”

Quay Valley says that it will use high-tech sustainable infrastructure, like water reclamation and solar power, to exist without putting further strain on the grid or the environment.

Welcome to the Rural Model Town That Wants to Build a Hyperloop Utopia

Hopping on the Hyperloop

My biggest question for Hays was whether residents of Quay Valley could actually use the Hyperloop as transit around town. After all, a big, fast, noisy pneumatic catapult is designed for launching people at 600 miles per hour between cities, not between bus stops. But yes, Hays says, the track will be used as an alternative to driving—residents and visitors will park and then take the Hyperloop around the city.

Welcome to the Rural Model Town That Wants to Build a Hyperloop Utopia

“To study it, you really need to know how people get on it, off it; how it can be used,” he says. “So this is the ultimate test.” I reached out to HTT and its founder Dirk Ahlborn on Facebook for more information about the logistics of using a hyperloop for public transit around a small region, but haven’t heard back yet. But in an official press release about the deal between the two ventures, Ahlborn seemed to confirm that the hyperloop will be used as transit for paying customers, saying, “this installation will allow us to demonstrate all systems on a full scale and immediately begin generating revenues for our shareholders through actual operations.”

The future HTT seems to envision isn’t just a binary connection between two cities—it’s a series of connections between multiple hyperloops that connect cities with suburbs, too. In a Forbes article from December, Ahlborn described this intermodal edit of Musk’s vision:

Ahlborn isn’t content, though, to just connect the cities themselves. “If I need to drive 2 hours to get to the hyperloop, I’m not going to use it,” he says. So his group envisioned a series of smaller loops that would operate more slowly but connect to the larger ones… The small footprint of the hyperloop design means it can be built nearly anywhere there’s an existing freeway or rail right of way.

Welcome to the Rural Model Town That Wants to Build a Hyperloop Utopia

So we have a symbiotic relationship: For HTT, the Quay Valley test track is a way to test its idea of smaller hyperloop rings that could eventually connect to a bigger loop that runs along I-5. For Quay Valley and Hays, the test track is a wildly futuristic attraction that adds to the planned community’s list of features and bolsters is promise of bringing jobs to the county.

Vapor Urbanism

But more than anything else, the biggest question is whether either project will ever cinch the funding it needs to get it off the ground. At $100 million for the test track and more than that still for Quay Valley, each will be a massive undertaking.

Welcome to the Rural Model Town That Wants to Build a Hyperloop Utopia

Which brings us to what makes any of this—real or bluster—so interesting: It follows a narrative pulled from the world of consumer technology, rather than conventional urban planning. Quay Valley isn’t really a place with people yet. Right now, it’s a collection of technologies that residents will use.

The Hyperloop is one of those features, and in it a way, it follows the same pattern: A brilliant bit of engineering introduced with a secret launch and a media firestorm, up for development by anyone who could afford to build it. It is a piece of technology that could change cities and places forever, but the implications of such a shift have barely been mentioned. It’s city-scale vaporware. That’s not to say either plan is destined to fail, but rather, that both are products that could be developed anywhere. They are concepts, renderings, releases which frame the drastic way in which they will alter cities and landscapes as a theoretical bridge to be crossed.

In the future, even cities are gadgets.

Source Article from http://feeds.gawker.com/~r/gizmodo/full/~3/EHW1h9FkQcE/welcome-to-the-rural-model-town-that-wants-to-build-a-h-1688207199

Tinder’s paid service launches with a pretty sleazy catch

http://www.redslime.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/tinder-undo-630.jpg

If you didn’t think that your opinion of Tinder could go any lower, something new pops up to make you change your mind. The hookup app has reportedly launched its long-awaited paid tier, but in Europe, users will have to overcome something worse than left-swipes: ageism. Tinder Plus users who are under 28 years old will be able to subscribe to the service for just £3.99 ($6.39) a month, but users over that age will be asked to spend £14.99 ($23.03) — nearly four times as much for the same thing.


Tinder has been building hype for its paid tier since the end of last year, pushing users over to a freemium version of the existing app with limited functionality. Tinder Plus, meanwhile, enables users to undo left-swipes and alter their location when they’re on the go. It’s not yet clear if this pricing is an experiment, or if the US price of $9.99 will be similarly changed, but it looks as if you just got one more reason to lie about your age on Facebook.
















Source Article from http://www.engadget.com/2015/03/02/tinder-paid-tiers-are-ageist/?ncid=rss_truncated

The Wisest Wizard Doesn’t Drink from Cans

“Wizard Staff” or “Wisest Wizard” is a drinking game played at parties where the attendees participate by taping the empty cans of the drinks they’ve consumed on top of one another to form a staff of inebriated power. A person with a longer staff is considered to be at a higher level and can therefore command lesser wizards to pound their current beverage to a point they see fit. Not everyone at a party necessarily drinks their tasty libation of choice from a can however. So, [Ahmed] and his group came up with a solution for those of us who might alternately prefer to wield a pint glass of power instead.

In their hardware project for Hack Illinois 2015, [Brady Salz], [Ahmed Suhyl], [Dario Aranguiz], [Kashev Dalmiaand] decided to add a zest of tech to the game. For their updated rendition, glasses are equipped with battery packs for mobility, a Spark micro-controller, and different colored LEDs as indicators. A couple of wires reach into the bottom of each glass to measure conductivity and keep track of the number of times it is filled and then emptied. In leu of towers of aluminum husks and duct-tape, the group developed a simple Android app for participants to log into which will track and visualize the standings of each player registered to one of the glasses. They even created a pebble version of the app that will display all the same information in case you don’t want to risk handling your phone while drinking… heh.

For an added level of fun, once a player reaches a certain level above someone else, they unlock the option to “challenge” the lesser adversary. By selecting that person’s user name in the app, the LED and buzzer on their glass will spring to life, letting them know they’ve been chosen to chug the rest of their drink. If you’re curious how they made it work, you can check out the team’s code on Github and maybe take a stab at giving the game a makeover of your own.

Source Article from http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/hackaday/LgoM/~3/nBrOl-TiQKY/

How One Man Wants to Free North Korea With USB Drives and Pirated Movies

How One Man Wants to Free North Korea With USB Drives and Pirated Movies

North Korea is a quietly desolate otherworld, at least as far as we outsiders can tell from the bits and pieces of untouched, unpropagandized media that occasionally leak out. The key to freeing it? It could be sneaking American media in. Wired talked to one of the men who does it, and his story is fascinating.

The North Korea Strategy Center is an organization founded by Kang Chol-hwan, who spent 10 years in a North Korean gulag along with his family when his grandfather was accused of treason. Imprisoned from ages 9 to 18, and subjected to such horrors as being forced to stone the bodies of captured escapees, Kang was eventually freed for reasons left unexplained.

After his release, he discovered pirate radio and learned about North Korea from an outside perspective for the first time. From there, he dedicated his life to providing the same experience to others, though by slightly more modern means.

Wired explains his modern-day approach:

Kim has also developed what he calls stealth USB drives, designed to avoid detection. To any casual observer, the drive seems empty. But its contents reappear with a simple trigger, the details of which Kim asked that I not publicize. Not even the buyer would necessarily know that the USB contained illegal educational materials, he says. Instead, the files would simply materialize one day, a spontaneous gift Kim hopes will be as life-changing as the hard drive whose wondrous contents he once discovered.

These hundreds of painstakingly smuggled USB drives contain everything from episodes of Friends to copies of Lucy (ugh) to—you guessed it—rips of The Interview.

You can learn more about Kang’s plot—his strategies and which specific shows he’s keen on importing—over at Wired. Check it out, and be glad all you have to do to find contraband media is head over to the Pirate Bay. [Wired]

Source Article from http://feeds.gawker.com/~r/gizmodo/full/~3/0hHcMYq3nRI/how-one-man-wants-to-free-north-korea-with-usb-drives-a-1688814490

Low-Voltage Tesla Coil Uses a Relay Instead of a Spark Gap

[Teodor] writes in with a unique Tesla coil he designed and built. Unlike most Tesla coils, [Teodor]’s design is able to run with a fairly low input voltage because it doesn’t use a static spark gap like most Tesla coils. Instead, his coil uses a relay in place of a spark gap.

[Teodor] built his coil using leftover components from his old school, making good use of some parts that might have otherwise been thrown away. The most critical component of his circuit, the relay, is just a standard normally-closed relay that is rated at 20A. [Teodor] wired the relay so that it energizes its own coil whenever it is shut. This causes the relay to briefly open every time the coil is energized, creating a resonant circuit. The resonant circuit charges a tank capacitor and places it in series with the primary coil inductor every time the relay closes, forming the tank circuit of his design.

With [Teodor]’s design, the resonant frequency of the secondary is nearly identical to that of the primary. This creates a significant voltage boost, helping produce very high voltages from such a low input voltage. The only downside to this design that [Teodor] recently discovered is that the relay contacts get red-hot after a few minutes of operation. Not optimal, but it still works! Check out [Teodor]’s writeup for more details and instructions on how to build your own.

Source Article from http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/hackaday/LgoM/~3/o87KSFQAQVs/

Holy Shit, This Weight Loss Supplement Has Prozac In It

Holy Shit, This Weight Loss Supplement Has Prozac In It

The FDA just issued a warning not to use the weight-loss supplement Oxy ELITE Pro Super Thermogenic — because it contains fluoxetine, also known as Prozac. Not a drug humans should be taking unaware, and one that can cause serious side effects, including suicidal thoughts and seizures.

From the report:

FDA laboratory analysis confirmed that Oxy ELITE Pro Super Thermogenic (Lot# 216732, Exp. 04/17) contains fluoxetine. Fluoxetine is an FDA approved drug in a class of drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) used for treating depression, bulimia, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), panic disorder, and premenstrual dysphonic disorder (PMDD).

Uses of SSRIs have been associated with serious side effects including suicidal thinking, abnormal bleeding, and seizures. In patients on other medications for common conditions (aspirin, ibuprofen, or other drugs for depression, anxiety, bipolar illness, blood clots, chemotherapy, heart conditions, and psychosis), ventricular arrhythmia or sudden death can occur.

The FDA also notes that dietary supplements are increasingly laden with hidden drugs and chemicals, even when they’re advertised as “all natural,” and that the hidden ingredients can cause great harm. Case in point: in 2013, more or less the same product, Oxy ELITE Pro, was pulled from shelves in Hawaii, after it was associated with 29 cases of liver failure (one of which was fatal.)


Contact the author at cheryl.eddy@io9.com.

Source Article from http://feeds.gawker.com/~r/gizmodo/full/~3/zKABs9nG9UA/holy-shit-this-weight-loss-supplement-has-prozac-in-it-1688716190

We’re live at Mobile World Congress 2015 in Barcelona!

It’s that time again: Our team has descended upon the heart of Barcelona to bring you another week of the latest the mobile world has to offer. As always, we’ll be shooting videos and liveblogging events until our fingers fall off, and we certainly hope you’ll come join us for the ride. So, what’s in store for us all this time around?

We’re glad you asked.


To no one’s surprise, HTC and Samsung have been working on a handful of leaky flagship phones, and they’re going to unveil them at a pair of back-to-back press this afternoon. You know what that means: Back-to-back liveblogs to bring you the news as soon as it breaks. One has to wonder if that’s all HTC’s bringing to Barça, considering the dull throb of rumors that keep suggesting there’s some sort of M9 phablet secretly lurking under wraps. Samsung’s eternal rival LG has already trotted out its newest smartphones ahead of the show (and we already reviewed the only one that’s really worth talking about), though we’re looking forward to slipping on the webOS wonder that is the Watch Urbane LTE.

Meanwhile, Sony’s presence at the show has been scaled back as it tries to decide if smartphones are a part of its future at all, but it’s probably going to show up with at least a new tablet in tow. Microsoft is making an appearance tomorrow morning, too, so expect more clarity on Windows 10 for mobile and maybe a pair of mid-range smartphones for good measure. Then you’ve got Huawei, a company that can’t help but tout its surprisingly handsome Android Wear watch ahead of time, and BlackBerry, a company that’s reportedly planning to layout its roadmap for the entire year sometime this week.

Beyond all that, beyond the glitz and glamour of new gadgets from huge companies, are the little things. The quirky bits. The Bluetoothbrushes and smart suitcases and the GPS canes. In years past, stepping into the Fira de Barcelona has been like digging into a tiny slice of the future, and we’re going to spend the week helping you see as much of it as possible. Keep it locked to our MWC event page for all the news out of Catalonia as it breaks, and thanks –really — for joining us.
















Source Article from http://www.engadget.com/2015/03/01/live-at-mobile-world-congress-2015/?ncid=rss_truncated

Cardboard CNC Machine Boxes Up both a Tool and a Framework

Want to build up a desktop CNC machine without breaking your pocketbook? [James Coleman], [Nadya Peek], and [Ilan Moyer] of MIT Media Labs have cooked up a modular cardboard CNC that gives you the backbone from which you can design your own machine.

The CNC build comprises of design instructions for a single axis linear stage and single axis rotary stage with several ideas on how to combine multiple of these axes together to construct a particular machine. Whether your milling wood, laser-engraving your desk, or pipetting your bacteria samples, the designs [Dropbox] and physical components can be adopted for your end-application.

Perhaps the most interesting aspect of this project is that, at the high level, it is not just a cnc, but a framework known as Gestalt. This architecture enables users to develop their own machine configuration consisting of multiple software nodes linked together with high-level Python Code. Most of the high level computation is organized by a Python library that calls compiled C-code. This high-level framework processes instructions through the desired machine’s kinematics to output commands to the motor controllers. Finally, the top-level interface does away with the archaic GCode with two alternatives: a Python interface consisting of function calls to procedures and a remote interface to make procedure calls through http requests. While the downside of a motion control language is that commands have no standardization; they are, however, far more human-readable, a benefit that plays into the Gestalt Framework’s aim “to be accessible to individuals for personal use.”

gestaltFramework

In the paper [PDF], [Ilan] expresses the notion of a tool as an impedance-matching device, an instrument that extends the reach of our creativity to bend and morph a broader range of shapes into forms from our imagination. Where our hands fail in their imprecision and weakness, tools bridge this gap. Gestalt and the Cardboard CNC are first steps to creating a framework so that anyone can design and realize their own impedance-matching device, whether they’re weaving steel cables or carving wood.

The folks at MIT Media Labs a familiar heavy-hitters in this field of low-cost machinery, especially the kind that fit in a suitcase. We’re thrilled to see a build that reaches out directly to the community.

via [CreativeApplications.net]

Source Article from http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/hackaday/LgoM/~3/I-feemtwFQA/

Thanks For the Net Neutrality, Oligarchs

Thanks For the Net Neutrality, Oligarchs

“Net neutrality” will be the law of the land following the Federal Communications Commission’s vote to reclassify broadband Internet services as public utilities. Please take some time this week to thank the outspoken citizens who made this possible. These heroes of the open Internet are regular folk, just like you and me, with names like Microsoft, eBay, Facebook, Google and Amazon. Congrats to a major industry on its lobbying victory!

Because telecom and cable companies vociferously oppose regulation of their terrible, anti-consumer practices, it’s easy to paint the net neutrality fight as pitting greedy and self-interested corporations against earnest and sincere activists. But that’s reductive and wrong. The biggest hint that that isn’t the correct lens through which to view this fight is that the earnest and sincere activists won the fight, and the corporations lost. That isn’t just a Washington rarity, it is a Washington impossibility. No, net neutrality won (pending future court battles) because the earnest and sincere activists represented a different group of greedy and self-interested corporations.

The FCC received a record four million public comments on their net neutrality proposal. The overwhelming majority of those comments supported the basic tenets of net neutrality. The New York Times quotes one excited activist: “This shows that the Internet has changed the rules of what can be accomplished in Washington.” It has, though not quite in the way he means. The net neutrality fight shows that the Internet industry can consider its political influence to be on par with that of older, more established industries. Those public comments would have meant nothing at all if they hadn’t represented a policy priority also shared by Google, one of the largest and most influential corporations in the world. And even Google wouldn’t have beaten Verizon and Comcast alone—it lost the last time it had this fight, in 2010. Google had to make like a real global megacorporation and form an alliance with its ostensible competitors in its own field in order to present a unified front to official Washington — just as energy, healthcare, finance and telecommunications companies have been doing for decades. The corporate Internet grew up, formed a cartel, and won a major policy battle.

Don’t get me wrong. Regulating broadband as a utility is (in my opinion) the correct policy. This is as close as Washington gets to a victory for the forces of “good.” I would just urge everyone to keep in mind that the forces of good in this instance won not because millions of people made their voices heard, but because the economic interests of a few giant corporations aligned with the position of those millions of people. And I say that not simply to be a killjoy (though I do love being a killjoy), but because if anything is to change, we musn’t convince ourselves that actual victory for the masses is possible in this fundamentally broken system. Please don’t begin to believe that the American political establishment is anything but a corrupt puppet of oligarchy.

American politicians are responsive almost solely to the interests and desires of their rich constituents and interest groups that primarily represent big business. Casual observation of American politics over the last quarter-century or so should make that clear, but if you want supporting evidence, look to the research of Vanderbilt political scientist Larry Bartels, and Princeton’s Martin Gilens and Northwestern’s Benjamin Page. Gilen and Page’s conclusions are easily summed up: “economic elites and organized groups representing business interests have substantial independent impacts on U.S. government policy, while mass-based interest groups and average citizens have little or no independent influence.”

Political battles are won when the rich favor them. America’s rich have lately become rather progressive on certain social issues, and those issues have rather suddenly gone from political impossibilities to achievable dreams. This is why same-sex marriage is an inevitability and marijuana decriminalization seems more likely than ever, but we can’t dismantle megabanks or raise the estate tax. This is why healthcare reform couldn’t happen without the buy-in (and buying off) of the bloated, awful healthcare industry and the doctor cartel. (And speaking of the doctor cartel: One of the few major political issues where the ultra-rich seem to have trouble getting their way is immigration reform, but there are plenty of wealthy professionals who rely on protectionism to keep their incomes elevated.) This dynamic explains the entire “education reform” project, which is an attempt to dismantle and re-create the American public school system, dreamed up (and almost solely supported) by the wealthy elite, most of whom have no education expertise or experience in urban public schools.

We have net neutrality for the same reason that copyright terms will be extended indefinitely forever and the Defense Department will keep being forced to buy incredibly expensive planes that don’t actually work: Because a large industry had a strong opinion on the subject.

Photo: Google’s Eric Schmidt enjoys a beverage at the 2010 World Economic Forum in Davos.
Credit: AP Images

Source Article from http://feeds.gawker.com/~r/gizmodo/full/~3/dTL8aS477i0/thanks-for-the-net-neutrality-oligarchs-1688571806

Proposed privacy bill protects industry more than it does people

US-WEATHER-SNOW-WHITE HOUSE

If the return of Frank Underwood stoked a thirst for real drama from the nation’s capitol, perhaps the White House’s late-Friday news dump of the proposed Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights will whet your whistle. Alongside common-sense things like Congress finding that Americans “cherish privacy as an element of their individual freedom” in the draft, are headings pertaining to transparency, individual control, security and accountability. In regards to that first one, the bill states (PDF) that companies make their policies for exactly what they do with your data readable without the need for a legalese translator. In addition to that, companies would need to disclose what they’re doing with the reams of data they’re collecting on all of us and comply with requests for data deletion, as well. You’d also be able to request a look at the data collected by companies. Sounds good, right? Well, as the Associated Press reports, that isn’t quite the case.


The bill would essentially strip away some of the Federal Trade Commission’s power

Apparently, the bill has more than a few loopholes giving firms that’d rather not comply a way to opt out without consequence. Fun. This takes place in a few ways: granting the right for “industries to develop their own privacy standards,” and giving start-ups a year-and-a-half wherein they’re free from any punishment for wrongdoings regarding privacy. What’s more, AP notes that the bill would essentially strip away some of the Federal Trade Commission’s power and it wouldn’t have any rule-making authority in matters because those “privacy codes of conduct” would be drafted not by the FTC, but companies themselves. So, say a company like Google could draft its own set of standards to follow that’d undoubtedly be to its own benefit, but unless it violated any of those rules, the government agency that works to protect consumer privacy would have its hands tied.

When you look at the massive swell of (mostly) support for yesterday’s net neutrality rulings, it’s easy to understand why the Obama administration would rather sweep this under the rug. If you believe the critics, however, then this bill might not make it far because it needs a congressional sponsor — something The New York Times reports is unlikely to happen. From the looks of it, let’s hope they’re right.

[Image credit: AFP/Getty Images]















Source Article from http://www.engadget.com/2015/02/28/consumer-privacy-bill-of-rights-draft/?ncid=rss_truncated