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What's in the big box behind the computer that the monitor is standing on?
3768 posts • joined 28 Feb 2007
What's in the big box behind the computer that the monitor is standing on?
After a good run of missions, the Americans lost Mars Observer in 1992, Climate Orbiter in 1998 and Polar Lander / Deep Space 2 in 1999. The UK then lost Beagle 2 in 2003. Since then its been nothing but successes apart from - oh dear - the Russians again with Fobos-Grunt.
"We've got literally seven minutes to get from the top of the atmosphere to the surface of Mars, going from 13,000 miles an hour to zero in perfect sequence, perfect choreography, perfect timing,"
Actually sounds that like the judging on 'Strictly Come Dancing'
Where the BOFH is working these days?
Louise Mensch recommended that Facebook and Twitter should be turned off when there may be a riot. Perhaps her site is just practicing?
'A quake that hasn't done that mcuh change to ground levels in any history.'
You're quite right - apart from (OTTOMH) the Chile 'quake of 1961 (2m), the Cascadia 'quake of 1700 (1.5m), Owens Valley in 1872 (4.5m), Hebgen Lake, Montana in 1956 (6.7m) - an intraplate earthquake at that....
But has the triple-format Blu-Ray + DVD + digital download package pretty much disappeared from recent movie releases?
I quite liked it as it offered a top-quality disk for the big screen, a DVD for the kids to trash and a digital copy for travelling, but none of the big movies released in the last few months seem to have it. I wonder if they're planning on replacing it with UV?
'Actually the evidence appears to show that Jesus was an invention created using examples of previous imagined 'prophets' with very similar actions and supernatural powers.'
Ah, just like the way Marvel keeps rebooting its comic universe when sales fall.
Turing and David Champernowne invented the Turochamp algorithm in 1948. Without a computer to hand, they played games where one player impersonated the machine, following the algorithm rather than using their own game playing skill.
Turochamp definitely lost to Glennie in 1952, but there were earlier games which have not been recorded in detail, including one where it defeated Champernowne's wife.
But hydroxylapatite is found in bones and teeth.
Has CMU been experimenting on Martians? And will their descendants swear vengeance on the Earthmen who disturbed their eternal rest and bring fire and destruction to our planet?
Now that would be a press-release.
Those automated paying-in machines are useless. They seem to need as many staff on hand to help people use the wretched technology as were once employed behind the counter processing cheques and making payments. I assume there has been a saving somewhere, but I'm damned if I can work out where.
Hold on - isn't RBS / NatWest taxpayer owned? So that £30 is coming out of our pockets!
Not a good day for this to happen when it's expected Moody will downgrade the bank's creditworthiness later today.
With the exception of its patent portfolio, is Nokia worth anything to anyone other than Microsoft? The company has tied its future so tightly to Windows Phone that turning it round to manufacture - say - Android handsets would surely be such a massive task that it could founder before anything came to market.
I wouldn't be surprised if Microsoft took a large equity stake in Nokia real soon now, if only to keep those lovely patents close to hand and avoid the company slipping away.
Larry's got an extinct volcano to call his own. Has anyone checked if any of our nuclear submarines have gone missing?
Just pop in and see his friends in the Russian embassy? He's been a loyal contributor to the Putin-friendly RT channel for some time now, you'd think they'd owe him a favour for all his fawning west-bashing interviews.
Have the Chinese said what they're using these supercomputers for? I wonder if they're simulating nuclear explosions like the US is doing to avoid resuming nuclear testing.
Injecting carbon dioxide and water into basalt leaches calcium and magnesium ions from the lava to form solid carbonates which remain deep underground. A trial called CarbFix is already underway at the Hellisheiðivirkjun power plant near Reykjavik.
Boeing are closing the California plant where the plane was built and Congress are questioning the project's value so its future is pretty uncertain.
What might keep it going is news that China is beginning testing of its Shenlong spaceplane. Nothing like a bit of Cold War style rivalry to keep cool stuff coming.
'Nokia is by some distance the most important and accomplished European technology company – and it still remains so today.'
Wouldn't that accolade belong to ARM?
Not having Blu-Ray slashed the cost of the 360 and allowed Microsoft to beat Sony to market. The beancounters were very happy with that decision.
The company claims the site is moderated, but Channel 4 found that there were places on it called 'naughty nightclub' and 'sexy stripclub' - but this isn't picked up by their software or bods?
So that's $185,000 * how many words in the dictionary? even before lawyer fees.
'They want to monitor gaming sites, facebook and so many other high traffic websites where exactly are they going to store all this data in a format thats searchable?'
Might be time to train in big data handling. I suspect a lot of very well paid, completely useless jobs will be created by this policy.
Is that there's something in the water supply at the Home Office. No matter which politician is appointed to the position, sooner or later, they're gibbering about needing massive new surveillance powers. Hell there was even a time when David Blunkett seemed to be sane, a quick trip to the Home Office and he was - well - you know.
So who's going to make a bet against the Conservatives announcing a review into the practicality of ID cards in the near future?
(I assume Labour will enthusiastically back this proposal - creepy mass surveillance seems to be in their DNA)
What's the betting the labels will be demanding even more draconian laws and fighting even harder against any possibility of UK users getting fair use of the stuff they buy?
Sadly under Gove, academy schools can follow their own curriculums provided they are 'balanced'.
So there are religious schools planned which will be teaching creationist / intelligent design/ lying to children in the UK.
But the pressing question has to be does the proposal tell us if Pluto is a planet or not?
The Miocene is not a period, it is an epoch ranging from 23.4 Mya to 5.3 Mya, it's divided into six stages (or ages). The Miocene and the Pliocene together form the Neogene period.
The Miocene is a bit of a bugger climatologically, generally the early part of the epoch sees a cooling as the Antarctic ice sheet established in the Eocene grew and the establishment of the circumpolar current in the Antarctic Ocean, but at the same time the proto-Mediterranean dried out entirely as the Alps rose which caused temperatures across Eurasia to rise. The later Miocene is generally warmer than the present climate.
Work done in 2011 in Bremerhaven suggests the warming climate in the late Miocene can be put down to changes in vegetation patterns across the world causing a slight darkening of the planet.
How long will Enterprise's aluminium airframe survive in a salty, damp environment?
One of the best evocations of childhood and parenthood I've ever read.
His prose was gorgeous and his ideas amazing - it'll be a long time before we see Mr Bradbury's like again - if ever.
...oh I know - a Playmobilnaut!
Any chance El Reg's Iberian Special Projects Dept can team up with Transonic Pussy* and produce a video of the motorised moggy cruising the skies?
* They were huge in the 1980s.
'I don't know if it lacks taste as I've never eaten dead cat.'
Have you been to a Harvester before?
Any chance NASA would like to hold the hat out and make this an international mission along with ESA, Roscosmos and the Chinese space agency?
Chain reactions can't happen in natural uranium on Earth as the level of fissile U235 is too low to sustain the reaction. Well it is now - if you go back in time, the proportion of U235 in uranium rises to a point that self-sustaining reactions could occur. So far one site is known where this happened, it was discovered at Oklo, Gabon in 1972 by French geologists mapping a uranium deposit. They discovered the level of U235 at Oklo was even lower than normal. About 1.7 billion years ago, the ore would have been about 3% U235 (compared to about 0.7% today), water circulating through a uranium ore acted as a natural moderator allowing a self-sustaining chain reaction to run at very low power for hundreds of thousands of years.
Personally I go with the idea that this C14 spike was caused by Camelot's nuclear testing programme.
I can't help but think this project's inspiration, the world's favourite celebrity morgue attendant, should also carry a few bricks around to stop herself falling over at regular intervals.
Well done Lester, you're very much Britain's own Elon Musk.
After all, he's got all those free Olympic tickets so long as he's Culture Minister.
Sony's imaging division is in good health and is the component supplier for many other big companies - Nikon uses Sony sensors for instance. I think Sony have already gobbled up Olympus' medical imaging business.
'Sure, a computer doesn't get tired, a computer doesn't get distracted and computers can be made to behave consistently. But human "hardware" is more reliable than computer hardware.'
A computer doesn't get bored or tired, it doesn't get distracted by the pretty young girl driving the red Mini in the other lane (hello!) and it doesn't get into a fight with its spouse for looking at the pretty young girl driving the red Mini in the other lane (of course I don't know her!)
'All this coming from the country that brought us the atomic age'
I think you're on to something - how about a nuclear-powered steam engine?
Great game and it also inspired Jeff Minter to produce 'Attack of the Mutant Camels' which was even better.
They just need to announce a minister for drought to start the deluge.
I rather admired the tribute NASA gave to Eugene Shoemaker. As well as discovering the comet that whacked into Jupiter, he was the great planetary geologist who proved Barringer Crater was actually meteoritic in origin and that the Earth did have a record of large impacts. He was also the pioneer of understanding how and when the Moon's craters formed.
So NASA gave him the send off he deserved, they placed a small portion of his ashes on the Lunar Prospector probe which was crashed into the South Pole of the Moon in the hope of discovering ice. In the process it carved out a new crater.
Does this now mean we don't have to go cap in hand to the Russkies or Chinese or Indians in order to chuck stuff in to space?
That's true, but you will have to use PayPal to pay for it.
Falcon also carried the cremains of James Doohan (Star Trek's Scotty) and Gordon Cooper (a real life Mercury astronaut) on its second stage which will spend the next year or so in orbit before reentering the atmosphere.
The new Astra constellation is mostly being built by EADS Astrium, so a good bit of the money will be coming to the UK.
How about a really long fuse lit when the balloon is launched?
My technical expert, a Mr Wile E Coyote assures me this is guaranteed to work.
If you buy a Kindle from Waterstones why would you ever come back to their shops or website?
I don't even see what's in it for them; no eBook store to make continuing profits and only razor thin profits on the device itself.
'The Russian Soyuz and Proton launchers are the only ones that reliably go first time, but there have been nearly 400 Proton launches and around two thousand Soyuz family launches.'
And as the Russians have found out over the last couple of years, even these rockets still throw up unexplained problems.
Does Elon Musk have the best job in the world - designing rockets by day, electric cars by night?
Would Sue be up to the challenge of outfitting LOHAN's brave Playmobilnaut with a miniature Pringle sweater?
Why don't the Iranians tow some rafts out into the middle of the sea and arrange them to spell out PERSIAN GULF for the Googlesats?