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    [–] Spotted a Ford Escape PHEV on my way to work. Might be one of those converted cars from 2007? Phys-Chem-Chem-Phys 1 points ago in electricvehicles

    Nope. I later asked the driver and they said that the university bought the converted cars for staff use back in the day as a part of a 'green' pilot project.

    [–] Tesla is the 3rd Most Valuable Automaker (Again) Phys-Chem-Chem-Phys 2 points ago in teslamotors

    It doesn't seem completely so, at least according to this report from Volkswagen Group:

    Volkswagen Group companies provide occupational pensions under both defined contribution and defined benefit plans.

    I'm not trained in corporate accounting or actuarial science but it seems that VW Group in 2017 has €28B of unfunded obligations from their defined benefits pension plan (in addition to their €2.2B/year to state-mandated defined contributions plans).

    [–] Tesla is the 3rd Most Valuable Automaker (Again) Phys-Chem-Chem-Phys 0 points ago in teslamotors

    Do these EV values include unfunded pension liabilities? From hearsay, I thought that the major European auto manufacturers have quite a lot of that.

    [–] I get my new EV on Thursday & I’m getting excited!! Phys-Chem-Chem-Phys 2 points ago in electricvehicles

    I read that the Jaguar I-Pace was designed and built externally (by Magna). I hope that this means it wouldn't live up to the stereotype that recent Jaguars are pain in the neck when it comes to maintenance and reliability. When I test-drove it a few months ago, it was a real nice ride!

    [–] Cadillac’s First Electric Vehicle Will Debut In About A Year From Now Phys-Chem-Chem-Phys 3 points ago in electricvehicles

    I reject weirdly snobbish definitions like yours. An electric vehicle (EV) is just a car that is/can be propelled by electricity directly. Cars like the Chevy Volt, BMW i3 REx, and Prius Prime have fully electric drive modes and battery packs which are recharged directly by electricity; they are thus EVs or, more precisely, plug-in hybrid EVs.

    [–] Cybertruck from mashed potatoes trending Phys-Chem-Chem-Phys 4 points ago in teslamotors

    clown music


    [–] I get my new EV on Thursday & I’m getting excited!! Phys-Chem-Chem-Phys 1 points ago in electricvehicles

    Congrats. The Jaguar I-Pace is a great car (albeit quite pricey). I hope that you'll enjoy your new ride and the EV life!

    [–] New “Aero” Wheel for All Model 3 Trims Phys-Chem-Chem-Phys 1 points ago in teslamotors

    Interesting. They seem reasonably priced and the manufacturer is Canadian too. Let us know what you think of them after installation and some usage!

    [–] EV FOMO Phys-Chem-Chem-Phys 1 points ago in electricvehicles

    Over the past 5 years, we had gone from a hand-me-down 2007 Kia Rondo to a new 2017 Chevy Volt Premier and now a new 2019 Tesla Model 3 LR AWD. The right time for a major purchase such as an EV really depends on your finances and your needs/wants. We're a tech-y family (software engineer and data scientist/physicist) and we've keen enough about the present state of the new tech (PHEV/BEV performance, SAE L2+, etc.) that we took the plunge after the early adopters. Life is finite and waiting longer for forthcoming improvements would mean more time not enjoying what is already available (and attainable by OTA updates). In addition, one is not obligated to keep a purchased car ad nauseum; it can be sold and be replaced by another.

    [–] Customer support in Toronto, Ontario Phys-Chem-Chem-Phys 1 points ago in teslamotors

    Downtown Toronto here.

    We received our Model 3 LR AWD in October. Our purchase experience was OK. My advice is to stay on top of the delivery process by keeping regular contact with your assigned staff member. SMS texting — as opposed to email or phone — seemed to be the most effective for us.

    Also, it appears to be worth it to wait til the end of quarter for the additional incentive on their part for timely deliveries. We got 'midnight silver' and the white interior for free. This car was offered because the car with our chosen options (default white exterior and black interior) was accidentally left behind in Montreal.

    Don't forget to use a referral link to get that 1500 km of free supercharging! Mine is here. 😉

    Do consider joining the Tesla Owners Ontario Facebook group and the official Tesla Owners Club of Ontario for relevant local info (you also get to borrow a chademo adapter).

    Feel free to ask if you have any more questions.

    [–] I never expected to see a video game to be on the cover of the world's premier science journal. Phys-Chem-Chem-Phys 1 points ago in gaming

    Here's the article for reference: Vinyals et al, "Grandmaster level in StarCraft II using multi-agent reinforcement learning," Nature (2019).


    Many real-world applications require artificial agents to compete and coordinate with other agents in complex environments. As a stepping stone to this goal, the domain of StarCraft has emerged as an important challenge for artificial intelligence research, owing to its iconic and enduring status among the most difficult professional esports and its relevance to the real world in terms of its raw complexity and multi-agent challenges. Over the course of a decade and numerous competitions1,2,3, the strongest agents have simplified important aspects of the game, utilized superhuman capabilities, or employed hand-crafted sub-systems4. Despite these advantages, no previous agent has come close to matching the overall skill of top StarCraft players. We chose to address the challenge of StarCraft using general-purpose learning methods that are in principle applicable to other complex domains: a multi-agent reinforcement learning algorithm that uses data from both human and agent games within a diverse league of continually adapting strategies and counter-strategies, each represented by deep neural networks5,6. We evaluated our agent, AlphaStar, in the full game of StarCraft II, through a series of online games against human players. AlphaStar was rated at Grandmaster level for all three StarCraft races and above 99.8% of officially ranked human players.

    [–] I never expected to see a video game to be on the cover of the world's premier science journal. Phys-Chem-Chem-Phys 1 points ago in gaming

    No, it's a program called AlphaStar by the company DeepMind (a Google/Alphabet subsidiary).

    In the paper, they showed that AlphaStar's EPM (effective actions per minute) is 183–211, about the same as those of the human players (174–205).