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Lots of dupes of this story recently, https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=10305226 seems to be the oldest but there are a few more.

In addition to jcr's thorough response, I'll add that we don't officially consider reposts to be dupes until the story has had significant attention here. Otherwise the randomness of /newest is too brutal. I wrote about this here if anyone is interested: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=9828818.

Yes, there have been four link-bait web-spam regurgitations of this story submitted to HN. Some of them needed to have their titles edited by HN moderators due to link-bait. None of them linked to the original source, and none of them got much attention on HN. The HN Guidelines [1] ask us to avoid link-bait and submit original sources. The HN FAQ [2] says a few reposts are tolerable if a story hasn't gotten significant attention in the last year.


6 points - 2 comment - phys.org


3 points - 0 comment - www.sciencealert.com


2 points - 0 comment - www.gizmag.com


2 points - 1 comment - www.electronics-lab.com

The claimed/potential efficiency numbers may never come to pass, but if they just get close, it's important new research for solar power and was interesting enough news to warrant an intentional repost.

The submitted story is the "original source" press release from the Georgia Institute of Technology (gatech.edu). Though it has quotes from the authors of the research and is written at a high level, it's still just a press release about recently published research [3], so it's not entirely "original" per se. None the less, the press release is still more easily readable for most people than the research paper itself. The paper is Open Access (i.e. free) and DOI linked in the press release.

Unfortunately, it's extremely common for sites like electronics-lab.com, eetimes.com, phys.org, sciencealert.com, gizmag.com and countless others to take original source press releases from university news sites, and create link-bait web-spam regurgitations. The majority of the supposed "articles" on such sites are just reproductions of press releases from other original sources, usually universities.

Though universities are complicit in creating web-spam by allowing their press releases to be replicated, it's still better for new research to get some exposure. If you see a HN submission from one of the press release regurgitation mills, track down the original source and post it in a comment so the mods can change the url. It helps keep the quality of HN high.

[1] https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html

[2] https://news.ycombinator.com/newsfaq.html

[3] "A carbon nanotube optical rectenna" (Nature Nanotechnology, 2015). http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nnano.2015.220

I also enjoyed this gem:

iFixit even found what appear to be silicone seals around the logic gates of the iPhone's logic board.

That really helps build my trust for Popular Mechanics.

Looks fantastic, and was seriously fun to fiddle a bit with.

One bug though: you can't back out from the site, the history is flooded with geargenerator.com addresses. Had to close the tab (Firefox 40.0.3 on Windows).

> the history is flooded with geargenerator.com addresses

I'm seeing this a lot in apps these days. In many places I think it is intentional: where the entire state of the current view can be encoded in the URL it effectively gives you a "free" undo feature and can be quite useful (like when I'm playing with potential new running routes in Google maps).

Yes, and that can be useful. However, if you use the back button to return to a previous URL it doesn't appear to update the settings from the URL. This means you can't use the back button as an Undo button.

Agree - I'd much prefer an "undo/redo" button inside the app, instead of flooding my history state. They can change the URL all they want (for linkability) but leave my damn history alone!

No, you're not alone. It made me feel like I've missed out on the past 30 years of computing, like they never happened like I remember them, or like I'm suddenly in a parallel universe. Quite scary. I guess I sound like that to some people too, some times.

A quick test searching for "WAMP protocol" works just fine (wamp.ws is the #1 result) and isn't too hard to type. Without "protocol" the OP site drops to #4.

I did not log out of the Google mothership so perhaps my results are skewed, but I also haven't heard of the WAMP protocol before. :)


I got the impression it was not a startup:

I did have to hire people and in the current market that was a very hard task. Especially so when the company in question is not a sexy startup, nor is the stuff they’re working on amazeballs, nor is the market that they’re in one that attracts a lot of people. It took me a lot of time interviewing people and even offering them a job (with a pretty good offer, mind you) only for them to choose another company.

I totally agree that the role seems like way more of a manager than a developer, so "lead developer" is a strange title. Of course titles are pretty strange and generally not very "portable" to begin with.



We’re beginning to see traffic volumes of people we haven’t seen on our subways since the late 1940s. That’s before the big surge in car traffic.

sounded very odd to me; it just went against my bias that "everything increases". Certainly the population of NYC must have grown significantly in the past 65 years, and it sounds just weird that all newcomers became drivers.

I tried to find statistics, but the best I got was from Wikipedia which says:

Ridership continues to increase, and on September 23, 2014, more than 6.1 million people rode the subway system, establishing the highest single-day ridership since ridership was regularly monitored in 1985..

Which seems to support my thinking but misses out on ~35 years. Am I missing something?


Many parts of NYC depopulated heavily during suburban flight, in particular Manhattan - the regional population has always trended up but many people left for the newly developed suburbs following the war.

Manhattan's population for example peaked at 2.2m between 1910-1920 and still has never been that high since. Current estimates are around 1.6m.

Population density in Manhattan has decreased dramatically, largely owing to suburban flight and an increased demand for quality of life - it was 21 people per 5,000 sq ft in 1910[1], it is 12 people now.

One funny thing about all of this is that the old brick buildings that are such prized real estate nowadays used to be low-rent tenements, considered blights on the city, and where a million dollar bachelor pad now sits multiple families used to fit in the same space.

The pattern extends to other parts of the city also - Brooklyn peaked at 2.7m between 1940-1950 and rapidly depopulated afterwards, even now the borough only has ~2.5m people.

The depopulation is a large part of NYC's reputation in the 60s, 70s, and 80s as a dangerous place - abandoned buildings and depopulated neighborhoods contributed to crime and general decay, though of course cheap rent also contributed to a dramatic surge of artistic achievement.

tl;dr: NYC depopulated heavily after 1950, and didn't really start recovering until the 1990s, and even then NYC's population didn't start growing rapidly until the early 2000s when the combination of shifting preference towards urban lifestyles and lowering crime made a large influx of population possible.

The resurgence of American cities is, in the grand scheme of things, an extremely recent phenomenon.

[1] http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2012/03/01/realestate/man...


Where are your numbers for Brooklyn coming from? The population was greater in the 1940s and 1950s, but it is still well over 2 million, and still the most populous borough in NYC. (As it seems to have been since 1930s.)




Whoops, we're using the same source but I looked at the wrong column for current numbers. Fixed. Nice catch, thanks :)


According to Wikipedia's stats, the population of New York declined slightly between 1950-1960, recovered 1960-1970, and then declined again, more sharply, 1970-1980. The big growth years started after 1980 - i.e. around the same time their ridership tracking began.

Correspondingly, the cultural legacy of New York as it started the 80's was one of a city in disarray with trashed streets and little public order or prospects for a future - great material for gritty films about crime and societal breakdown. The economic situation and mood started changing over the course of the decade, and the image of "Disneyfied New York" finally emerged in the 90's under Guliani's mayorship.

So, going back to the original question, New York went through a rough period following WWII, and that combined with a broad switch to cars accounts for changes in ridership.


Certainly the population of NYC must have grown significantly in the past 65 years

Economic stagnation in the 70s meant that the population of NYC has not always been growing.

And it definitely hasn't always been the city it is today - the subway had a terrible reputation in the 80s as a place of crime, so many didn't take it.


You're missing the precipitous post WW2 drop in ridership. A discussion of this curve, with a link to the ridership graph:



I understand ridership declined due to things like crime, growth of the suburbs, etc., but how much of an impact did things like tearing out the elevated rails in Manhattan have on these ridership numbers? What would they have looked like had they not been torn down?


There are a million more people in NYC now than in 1940. The population hasn't always increased.



Please don't break my browser's back-button.


Sorry about that! It should be fixed now.


Pet peeve: they should simplify the redundant "$0.97c" price.

It's either $0.97, or 97¢, it can't be both can it?


The article mentioned locals claiming to have pushed down a car one night ... No idea what volume of synthetic DNA would be sensible here, but I can imagine it'd mass less than a car.



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