3371 posts • joined Wednesday 28th February 2007 21:13 GMT
'Finally, at the end when he says 'want to see something cool?', I was really hoping that he was going to throw himself off of the roof of the building and the last shot would be the rapidly approaching ground.'
Very 'Strange Days'
What do you reckon the boffins get up to in that futuristic looking tower at the top of the photo?
I reckon its where they spend all their time dropping slices of toast to see if they land butter side down.
Sounds a lot...
Until you realise that the cleanup of Three Mile Island nearly two decades ago cost about that much and Tepco's liabilities for Fukushima are somewhere around the $59 billion mark. Yes nuclear power is pretty damn safe, but the companies are still not bearing the true costs.
Re: Have the tabloids calmed down yet?
Balanced debate would be nice but it's somewhat undermined by government ministers announcing plans in the nakedly partisan 'Sun' rather than in Parliament.
So she writes an opinion piece in The Sun (who's attitude to lorranorder is best summarised as flog-em-an-hang-em-and-flog-em-again-for-a-good-measure) outlining her proposals and *then* tells Parliament.
Remind me, didn't the Tories berate New Labour for doing just this?
Re: Britain responsible??
The steam and gas turbines are both British so we'll claim them too - so that's one million points to the British and 1 point to the Germans.
Re: Is this why lots of asteroids are made of Iron?
Supernovae are certainly where the iron in the universe comes from.
About 10% of asteroids contain sizeable amounts of iron and are classified as M-Type bodies. They show show in the early solar system, dust particles seeded with iron from supernovae accreted into planetismals some of which became large enough and hot enough, through impacts and radioactive heating to fractionate with the dense iron and nickel sinking towards the core. A few tens or hundreds of millions of years later, some of these bodies were in turn smashed up by major impacts producing asteroids and iron meteorites.
Re: All for one and one for all
Some McDonalds are being refitted to go all upmarket - well upmarket from say Burger King. Amongst the newness are row after row of tethered iPads - all of which come with 'The Sun' app. Although the reading age is well suited to small children, I wouldn't call the paper's content suitable for children.
Re: "...which has trawled through some old shipyard records..."
The theory of bad steel or bad rivets doesn't really hold water (ahem) when you think her sister ship, the Olympic, performed sterling service in those very same waters until 1935. Olympic not only had a nasty habit of hitting other ships in the cold Atlantic, but once ran down a U-boat - all without any major hull defects. Olympic was only taken out of service at that point because the merger of White Star and Cunard which left the company with too much tonnage for the TransAtlantic routes.
Re: Mac or FORTRAN?
Apple's also been ignoring interface designers for quite some time now. If it's not the horrible faux-reality interfaces of the new Address Book or the Calendar, it is (as the article says) the colour-vampire interfaces that have been foisted users with the grey-on-grey-with-grey-highlights favoured by iTunes. Apple have also produced some pretty nasty 'professional' interfaces in products like Aperture and Final Cut which can only be described as 'Depressing'. Frankly they both need to be taken out and recreationally beaten to death with a shovel.
Re: Its Cobblers
Better or worse than [insert name of Robin Williams feel-good-family-movie-here]?
Because I very nearly walked out of 'RV'.
I was 40,000ft over Greenland at the time.
I salute you
Passing high voltages and currents through random stuff in the pursuit of knowledge.
Have you tried a doughnut?
Bloat 'n float
Is an accepted palaeontological term for when terrestrial fossils are found in marine sediments. The dead beasty gets all puffy and bob, bob, bobs down a river until it goes flat and sinks to the bottom.
Unless of course they all died in the Flood.
This is going to bugger the search engine results
Including the words LOHAN, suck, ejaculation and lube in an aerospace engineering page should lead to a lot of disappointed smutmongers. Well done Lester, you deserve your beer.
The Earth has one permanent natural satellite - the Moon. There are however a number of objects that are in 1:1 resonances with the Earth which are called quasi-satellites. The orbit of a quasi-satellite is not stable over the long term and the object will eventually go off into another orbit around the Sun.
There are five quasi-satellites of Earth: 3753 Cruithne, 2002 AA29, 2003 YN107, 2004 GU9 and 2010 SO16. In 2002 the Earth temporarily captured J002E3 which turned out to be the third stage of Apollo 12 which had been discarded into solar orbit. After a few swings around the planet it was ejected into a new solar orbit.
The real problem we have is that the governing party is too ignorant of technology to see why this is a bad idea and a Labour Party still deeply in love with controlling everything we see and do. Between them they can see literally nothing wrong with this proposal.
Re: The China Syndrome again?
'Would you trust a Chinese company who's CEO, Ren Zhengfei was a Major in the People's Liberation Army (PLA) where he served as a military technologist to supply a national broadband network?'
The technological geniuses at BT thought Huawei were just splendid. And I'm sure they'd never do anything that would affect the security of their users.
Re: Dublin surely
Until now they've had a big office near Victoria Station, which if you're ever allowed in has to be the most terrifying place ever (and Lester's photos aren't too far off). Thousands of terrifyingly bright, terrifyingly young people sitting around doing stuff surrounded by old fashioned telephone boxes and beach furniture.
The food is great though. And if you're very well behaved you get goodies.
Re: "or do I err?"
'It's equivalent to 1000* the entire US electricity consumption but not for very long.'
EDF would still find a way of overcharging you.
I do hope there's a big lever labelled DANGER!, a Jacob's Ladder fizzing in the background and a hunchbacked assistant on call for when the head boffin says 'MORE POWER!'
Also a language issue
A lot of commercial software doesn't support Icelandic characters or dictionaries, so open source is one alternative for a country where words like 'haestaréttardómari' should come with a health warning.
There's also a bit of an urban myth about Icelandic Windows. The traditional word for a window is 'skjár'. Icelandic windows traditionally weren't made from expensive imported glass, but were usually stretched sheep's stomachs or placentas. Those of us who had a Vista machine, can fully understand the experience. Usually though, most people say 'Windows' and everyone else just nods.
Re: Don't feed the troll
If people read the paper (and it'd be interesting to know if Lewis did), the authors are much more hesitant about their results than this article makes out. They use the words 'tentative' and 'suggests' as well as being clear that they cannot precisely age all of the crystals.
It's a shame that Zunli Lu et al's work is being sensationalised by people who don't have a background in the subject to sharpen their own axes.
Re: does this support Manual Olivers nova hypothesis ?
Not at all.
The inner planets are denser for two reasons - none of them are massive enough to hold on to hydrogen and helium atmospheres, and secondly because radiation from the Sun has either cooked off, or blown off a large proportion of their volatile elements.
Going out for a takeaway
There's some fascinating genetic research that's been done in Iceland on the origins of the settlers. Looking at mitochondrial DNA passed down through females, it is clear that 80%+ of the male settlers were Scandinavians, but anything up to 60% of the women who accompanied them were of British and Irish extraction. The suggestion being that settler's left the fjords, found themselves a wife in Britain and Ireland and then went to Iceland. There's also a small, but significant genetic component amongst Icelanders which is today only found in North American Indians, suggesting that there was prolonged contact (ahem) between the two cultures.
And from the article:
It was possible that Vikings landed on the coast of Canada, but any human settlements there died out.
The Vikings DID land on the coast of Canada, many times. There is a well preserved settlement at L'Anse aux Meadows on Newfoundland.
With you on this one.
Many of the staff are genuinely knowledgeable about games, but the stores have been disastrously managed from the top. Every store has two huge two sections - one encouraging people to preorder and containing nothing but shelf after shelf of empty boxes of games that haven't been released yet. The other part of the store is pre-owned games piled up at random. A few shelves will contain the top ten games, cheap peripherals and precious little else.
Gamestation is marginally better, but all the stores have that teenager odour about them.
Sounds like an Olympic demonstration sport involving two small people dangling from Tower Bridge.
Re: How easily we forget...
Anyone know if cane toads are immune to spider venom?
It'd be just our luck if Australia's unrivalled ecology of teeth, spines, venom and general fuck-you attitude had found its match in the one animal less cuddly than a funnel web spider.
Buy that man a drink
Bill, you did headline writers proud with that minor epic.
'War of the Worlds'
The Spieberg version
For numerous crimes including:
Starring Tom Cruise trying to be all serious
Regulation voice of god voiceover by Morgan Freeman
Setting it in modern America for no very good reason at all
Reusing a perfectly good scene from 'Jurassic Park' but with worse effects
Where no soldier dies on screen despite losing all the battles
The most slappable child actor in history (the boy)
Dakota 'MY EARS!' Fanning for two hours of dialogue that can be summarised as 'AAAAAAAAAAAAH"
A bloody horrible movie from start to its very protracted ending.
Re: Wrong Angle
I thought the instruction to stow electronics was an attempt to reduce the number of heavy, hard objects that would be flying around the cabin in the event of an accident during approach or takeoff?
Re: The race to the moon started when?
There most certainly was a race to the Moon. At one point the Soviets had three independent Moon programmes underway. They failed because they couldn't get the two best rocket designers to agree on a single design; and when the Politburo did decide on Korolev's N1, they skimped on the funding. Korolev couldn't build big engine chambers to rival those the Americans were designing for the Saturn V, so he used large numbers of smaller engines, making his design complex. Korolev didn't have the ground testing facilities to debug the individual stages of the N1, so it would have to be tested all-up. His tragically early death meant that when the N1 was completed under Mischin, it was a shambles. Four launches, all much later than planned, four failures.
The fallback was to use the Proton - Zond to get a manned capsule based on Soyuz around the Moon before Apollo could do so. The Proton wasn't reliable enough at the beginning and Zond also had serious technical issues - including re entering at crushing G forces and depressurising in flight. A number of Zonds were sent around the Moon, but they only ever carried biological samples.
After Apollo 11 the Soviets claimed to have never been planning a manner lunar mission, saying they could do it all with their Luna sample return missions and Lunokhod. In actuality the manned lunar programme limped on until something like 1975 when the repeated failures of the N1 gave the Soviets a chance to kill their plans in favour of their Salyut space stations and what would become Buran.
Although the N1 is long scrapped, the Soviet manned LK lander still exists and is now on display in Moscow.
Seriously, is the supersonic bang that much of a problem for people? I lived under Concorde's flight path for my entire childhood and the Air France Concorde regularly passed over Cornwall at supersonic speeds (it wasn't meant to, but that's the French for you). Thump-THUMP, the windows might shake and that was it.
Most of the scares about the boom came from our ever sporting friends in America who suddenly became very concerned about the noise and pollution from SSTs right about the time they realised they couldn't get their own plane to fly.
Lunokhod went further because it could be remote controlled by human drivers from Earth, which once they'd got used to the system were able to get it scooting along at a fair old speed. The Mars Rovers have to have every move preprogrammed from Earth. When they reach the end of their transit, they scan the area, the results are sent to the operators who then plan the next shift.
Didn't just come from the usual suspects, but from The Guardian.
It'd be nice if the taxman went after Beardie Branson et al. with the same amount of enthusiasm he's had for this case.
Re: Several votes for Thorium
Thorium is considered the nuclear fuel of the future (and has been for about 40 years now) for a number of reasons.
Thorium ore is easy to extract and the most common form - monazite - is found as a heavy sand in and around rivers and beaches. It can literally be scooped up. There are several times as much thorium in the crust as uranium. It's also widely distributed so it doesn't have any economic bottlenecks (unlike the rare earths or lithium). There are enough known thorium reserves to last about 1000 years, without any new discoveries. In the US thorium is getting a real boost because America has by far the largest known reserves of the metal (followed by India - a fellow thorium booster).
It's pretty much pure Th-232 which when exposed to neutrons produces fissile U-233 without any of the unwanted isotopes of uranium (such as U-238 which is converted into plutonium in the reactor).
Because you can separate Th-232 from U-233 with relatively simple chemistry, the fuel cycle is simplified and there is much less actinide waste.
Thorium-breeder reactors will be simpler and cheaper to build than uranium-breeder reactors which use liquid metal cooling and have always been prone to leaks.
The downsides of thorium are that despite a lot of research, especially in India, no thorium reactor has yet been approved for mass production by regulators. The Indians have a 300MWe plant under construction which, *if* successful, will form the prototype for a fleet of power reactors.
The second issue with thorium power, which could kill it stone dead, is that U-233 is fast fissile and can be used in nuclear weapons. If thorium were to become a major energy source it does raise the proliferation risk - somehting that should be addressed now, rather than later.
Re: Heavyweight or just wrong?
That's not *quite* true - he'd be complaining it would have been better with an American ship.
Where's the money?
Even with a reduced market share, Apple still has the high end pretty much to itself.
I wonder if the board of Apple ever play Scrooge McDuck and go and swim through oceans of dollar bills in their vaults?
Re: GPS underwater?
That's probably the submarine volcano Kolumbos to the NE of Santorini which is only about 15m beneath the surface. It's seismically extremely active, but hasn't had any known eruptions since the 17th Century - when it covered much of the surrounding area in ash and pumice.
Re: GPS underwater?
You're good. There are two islands in the caldera, all formed by resurgent vulcanism since the caldera was formed. They're Nea Kameni, Palea Kameni which translate as New Burnt and Old Burnt respectively. They've been intermittently active for about 2000 years with the last explosive eruption in 1939-40 followed by quiet dome building in 1950 (IIRC).
This sort of deformation isn't uncommon in calderas as magma is regularly injected into the underlying magma chamber and then withdrawn again. It may, or may not presage more vulcanism in the very near future. If you want a good example of one that scared people witless a while back, the small town of Pozzuoli west of Naples sits in the middle of the Campi Flegrei caldera which last had a minor eruption in 1538 when the completely new volcano Monte Nuovo popped up in the middle of some fields. Between 1982 and 1984 they experienced thousands of small quakes and the ground bulging by 40cm - at its peak the town was rising by 4mm per day! Unsurprisingly, there were predictions of an imminent eruption, so the town was evacuated. After a few tense months the ground began to deflate and the area returned to its usual levels of seismicity.
And Campi Flegrei is a real monster of a volcano, about 37kya it produced 200km3 of white hot foam that now underlies most of the Bay of Naples. About 2 million people live in and around it who might need to be evacuated in a hurry. And you've seen what Italian traffic is like on a good day.
Are their any 4S owners here who can tell us whether they think Siri's performance is different from when they first got their new phones?
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