Member Since: October 23, 2009

Country: United States

  • They specifically had a rule against helium? I'm disappointed in you! Why didn't you just use hydrogen?

  • You mean you didn't just go grab a piece of galena from the coal stack in your basement? Or buy tubes at the neighborhood drug store?

    Yah, that's what all the books in the school library said to do.... in the 80s!

  • I think on April 1st the front page of should be filled with pictures of cellphones. There could even be a blurb about how Sparkfun will now be knows as simply "The Fun".

  • This is nothing new!

    I think one thing the net-neutrality regulation nay-sayers need to keep in mind.. the Internet began under Title II! It's only been since 2003 that ISPs had free-reign to filter what their customers have access to. Clearly Internet innovation will not be harmed by Title II. The comercial internet that we all love today was born under it!

    In the days since the internet was de-regulated ISPs have gone out of business, bought out or been bought by one another. The market has been consolidated into just a few hands most of which own other content or services that the internet competes with. They are the foxes guarding the hen house. Their interests are not compatible with our own.

    Nobody is proposing any wild un-heard of changes. We just want the rules to go back to where they were in a better time when they actually fostered innovation and growth instead of protecting entrenched anti-consumer interests.

  • How do YOU explain the services we have already? They suck!

    Almost all the broadband in this nation comes from the same few companies. The only new startups are either resellers selling services from said companies or serve inferior service to the niche rural markets that those companies aren't interested in.

    Consumers in most areas don't even get to chose between those companies, it's only one or MAYBE two that run wires to their town. For most US consumers if they don't like something their only alternative is dialup.

    Our average broadband speeds are behind those of other first-world nations and falling further behind daily.

    All the major providers also own either encumbant television or telephone services which should probably be replaced with internet based ones. The freedom we want is the freedom to compete with those services.

    But.. hey.. no one stops you from spending all day on Facebook or watching cable TV so there must not be a problem to solve right?

  • Really? Internet providers have already been caught throttling content that competed with their market plan. The only thing that ever prevented it from getting a lot worse was the threat that this would happen.

    As for taxing the internet? Well.. if the government wants to do that then they will have to pass a bill that taxes the internet. This is not that. I'm pretty sure that the rumor that the government is going to tax the internet has been around nearly as long as the internet itself. I know I read those silly email forwards about it back in the mid 1990s!

    Doing so would be stupid. It would be political suicide. If any politician pushed for that then all the people that came out for Net Neutrality, all the people who came out against SOPA and probably millions more would instantly be against them. they haven't even succeded in enforcing sales tax on things sold over the internet!

    Besides, any time they want more money they can just take it in the form of gas or income taxes and hardly anyone will notice. Why would they want to kick the Internet tax hornet nest?

  • "...effect of preventing a new startup from providing..."

    A new startup ISP or a new startup content provider?

    This has nothing to do with new startup ISPs. Those are pretty much already impossible on any meaningful level. Sure, you may get wireless startup here and there that serves 10-20 homes out in the sticks or you might get a reseller which is just another way to access the big main telecom's lines. The fact is that nobody can come in and run new wires.. pretty much every community has rules to prevent that already! And.. even if they could.. think of the startup cost!

    If you are talking about startup content providers then you should be all for Title II. Without Title II there WILL BE NO NEW SIGNIFICANT STARTUPS. This should be glaringly obvious. The networks are almost entirely owned by a few huge companies which have near monopoly or duopoly status in their respective regions. They also own most of the existing content.

    Look at Comcast, they purchased NBC and Universal among others FCOL! So long as they can get away with doing whatever they want with the pipes (and they DO own the pipes!) what's going to happen to your precious startups? They will be bandwidth throttled out of existance before you even have heard of them!

    We only have Netflix because they came about before Comcast figured out that they should be taking the internet seriously. Fortuantely those short-sided old guys assumed that traditional television would be king forever. I worked for Comcast back in those days when Netflix was starting out. We were told, traditional television was THE focus and internet was a toy that was not to interfere. And that's what we were told on the internet side!

    The only reason Netflix and others aren't being bandwidth throttled out of existance is because people already know about them and would raise a stink. Believe me, Comcast would LOVE to see Netflix and even Youtube die. They have tried throttling them in the past and even now still manage to squeeze money out of them now on threat of doing it again.

    If net neutrality laws were rejected tomorrow and someone tried to start something newer and better than Netflix... you would never even here of it. What few people read the first ads and went to try the service would get nothing because the providers wouldn't allow it. The users wouldn't know any better, they would assume that the new content provider just sucked and go back to watching their old TV. That's what the providers want. They want you to go back to watching your old fashioned TVs and talking on your old fashioned phones. They own that market and are comfortable there. They don't want to compete on the internet.

  • Why???

    I'd go for the si4743 instead. It does everything the above chip does PLUS weather band as opposed to the SI4736 which drops the short and long wave support. Of course, if you don't care about those you don't have to use that functionality. I'd like the chip where we can have EVERYTHING!!

  • Yeah. The mass of the solder helps it hold the necessary momentum to fly off the board. After using a solder sucker you just have the little bit that got sucked into the hole through capillary action and you will never get it out. (w/o adding more solder anyway)

  • That's great for salvage. Maybe not so great for rework when you already have a lot of other components in place.