Hackaday Hyperlinks: January 22, 2023 | Gen Tech

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The media bought on edge this week with the information that Wyoming will ban the sale of electrical automobiles within the state. Headlines like which might be definitely shocking, which is the intention, in fact, however even a fast look on the proposed laws might need revealed that the “ban” was nothing greater than a non-binding ruling, making this little greater than a political stunt. . The invoice, which might solely “encourage” the phasing out of EV gross sales within the state by 2035, is basically meaningless, particularly because it died in committee earlier than getting wherever close to a vote. But it surely does current a moderately lengthy record of the authors’ issues with electrical automobiles, focusing totally on the significance of the fossil gas trade in Wyoming. It is all fairly foolish, however then once more, outright bans on ICE car gross sales by an arbitrary and unrealistic deadline do not appear too sensible both. Could not folks simply determine which automotive works greatest for them?

Talking of which, a person in neighboring Colorado might need some purchaser’s regret when he discovered it might take 5 days to totally cost his new electrical Hummer at residence. Okay, so you got the most important attainable battery pack, 250 kWh, and also you’re utilizing an ordinary 120 volt wall outlet and the unique Hummer charging dongle, which provides one mile to the car’s vary each hour. . The proprietor would not truly appear all that stunned by the outcomes, nor does he appear significantly upset about it; appears to know sufficient in regards to the realities of EVs to acknowledge the necessity for a Degree 2 charger. That includes extra expense, in fact, each to buy the charger and to run the 240 volt circuit wanted to energy it, with out point out the cost of electrical energy. It is an issue that can solely worsen as extra chargers are added to our creaky community; We’re undecided what the answer is, however we’re fairly positive it may be nearer to the engineering finish of the spectrum than the political finish.

In tangentially associated information, vitality prices are very a lot on the minds of taxpayers in Wilbraham, Massachusetts, the place the inside lights on the native highschool have been on for the higher a part of the previous two years as a result of nobody is aware of the best way to flip them off. . The story goes that when Minnechaug Regional Excessive College was constructed a decade in the past, the varsity board specified a chic constructing automation system that would robotically flip the constructing’s 7,000 lighting fixtures on and off to avoid wasting vitality. That labored tremendous till April 2021, when the software program working the system threw up. It was a “excellent news, unhealthy information” factor; For one, the lights had been nonetheless on, which meant college students did not need to work in the dead of night. However now all of the lights within the large constructing keep on all day, on daily basis, which simply riled up taxpayers who thought they had been paying for a inexperienced system. The varsity board tried to get the unique installer to repair the issue, however the firm had modified arms a number of occasions and was unable to make the repairs. A $1.2 million bid to tear and change the system wasn’t sufficient, so that they determined to cobble collectively bits and items of recent {hardware} to sort things, however dreaded “provide chain points” preserve holding up a repair. The answer described within the linked story appears a bit clunky; Looks as if one in all us most likely might have fastened this with a little bit of reverse engineering and for lots much less cash.

Judging by the variety of “Synthetic Intelligence” articles showing in our feeds as of late with terminator references, the worry of machines coming to life and killing us multi functional fell swoop could be very a lot on folks’s minds. And whereas a couple of minutes on Twitter is sufficient to make you yearn for SkyNet to only launch all nukes and be completed with it, it seems like we will have to attend a bit, if DARPA’s concept of ​​battlefield AI is any indication. . . Plainly the Protection Superior Analysis Initiatives Company as soon as enlisted the assistance of a bunch of Marines to coach the AI ​​mannequin right into a robotic to detect approaching forces. All the Marines had been in a position to keep away from detection through the use of tried and true battlefield techniques akin to crawling whereas coated by a cardboard field, pretending to be a tree, and doing 1,000-foot somersaults. Granted, this coaching session looks like a number of years in the past, so the fashions have doubtless been fine-tuned since then. However nonetheless, in a contest between people and machines, we’ll wager our cash on the treachery and creativity of the human thoughts any day of the week.

And at last, everyone knows how scarily correct The Simpsons has been into predicting the longer term. However even for a present that premiered over 30 years in the past, there was not less than one cartoonist who beat them to it by a large margin. Get a load of this 1923 political cartoon, which predicted that by 2023, cartoonists would have “all our work completed by electrical energy.” It depicts a “cartoon dynamo” powering an “concept dynamo”, which makes use of an IV bottle crammed with ink and one thing like an XY plotter to robotically produce political cartoons. It isn’t too far off from what’s attainable with GPT-3 and DALL-E, however judging by what resulted from the early “one-picture political cartoon on DALL-E,” it appears cartoonists nonetheless have as a lot job safety because the marines.

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Hackaday Links: January 22, 2023