3342 posts • joined Wednesday 28th February 2007 21:13 GMT
Fantastic sense of priorities here
Only a few weeks ago the government said that the expensively useless practice of strapping someone in a tin can and firing it straight up will encourage children to take an interest in science and technology; now the expensively useless practice of strapping someone in a tin can and firing it sideways will encourage kids to take an interest in science and technology.
Because obviously no one could be interested in dinosaurs, volcanoes, explosions and radiation just because they're awesome could they????
The only important question these pork barrel projects can answer is - 'What is the effect on science and technology education when the men in spaulas arrive to scrape the test subject into a bucket?'
Re: photographic Apollo sites
The camera on Chandrayaan-1 has a minimum resolution of 5m - really amazing for a geological survey - but not quite enough to pick out details Apollo LM lower stages and the Moon Rovers left by the America. It *MAY* be enough to show SOMETHING is there, especially if they can photograph one of the landing sites in favourable lighting conditions when the American kit is all a twinkle, but don't get to hopeful of seeing Richard Nixon's lunar signature any time soon.
Your best hope is next year's Lunar Reconnaisance Orbiter (LRO) due to blast off from Kennedy late next April. It has a stunning 0.5m resolution, easily capable of resolving the landing sites and it is planned to make several passes over each of the Apollo sites.
Home Office consultation, New Labour style
'We asked a representative panel of intellectuals comprised of David Aaronovitch, Nick Cohen, Jon Gaunt, Melanie Phillips and Gary Bushell under the prestigious chairmanship of Kelvin McKenzie to discuss their opinion of government proposals.'
Further help for the still confused
Shouldn't it also have an arrow pointing left to show where Wales is relative to America? And one sort of north, north west to show the all important geographic Cambrian relationship to Iceland. Not to mention one pointing sort of south so I can locate Wales' position from Tristan da Cunha.
Bloody dumbing down of the BBC...
Bring back those weird pale blue 2mph 'Invalid Carriages' that used to potter round in the 1960s and 70s*.
Under my new policy, if you wanted a disabled badge you'd have to use one of those. The new policy would be like Biblical feel-good story; with the prospect of being forced to use an Invalid Carriage, tens of thousands of drivers all across Britain would be mysteriously healed of their crippling (but strangely unidentifiable) diseases and be free to continue driving sportscars and SUVs.
* For youngsters, they were something like the GWizz (favoured by slebs in London) but without the social stigma.
GM were in the economic crapper before HP got their hands on EDS. With them on board it'll be like the captain of the Titanic deciding to take another swing at the iceberg because they didn't quite hit it last time.
Lucky TOR is free
'Cos if they charged, they could make a fortune from everyone with a tiny bit of sense deciding this government is the scariest thing in Britain since Oswald Mosley decided that black really was his colour.
Geoff Hoon is on TV right now saying he's prepared to go 'quite a long way actually' to undermine civil liberties (yep, he said that); and:
'If they are going to use the internet to communicate with each other and we don't have the power to deal with that, then you are giving a licence to terrorists to kill people.'
Won't be long before we're all called traitors.
'What's the point in resilliency testing a system in space? It's sored in a cold vacuum, and can't gather dust or anything else that might cause damage.'
The temperature of space is not the most important factor; Hubble's orbit takes into the Earth's shadow and into direct sunlight so it is exposed to extremes of about -160C to 200C on a regular basis.
There are also resiliency tests needed to see how the hardware copes with the highly reactive monatomic oxygen you find around the Earth and for energetic particles trapped in the Earth's magnetic field, especially in places like the South Atlantic Anomaly where the Van Allen Belts come close to the Earth's surface.
Home Office lost 42 days
But they can't wait to be in a position to tell us 'look what happens when you don't trust the government'.
And you can be sure Jacqui Smith and her acolytes won't be satisfied with a mere 42 days detention if there is (imaginary bearded bloke forbid) another terrorist attack in the UK.
So social networking and gaming companies will be obliged to store and hand over data when the government asks for it.
But only those based in Britain.
That'll be Faceboo - oh no, ummm MySpace - errr maybe not, World of War - ahhhhh.
Looks like a bad day for Bebo then.
And after last week's example of how anti-terror legislation allows the government to seize foreign companies' assets in the UK, you'd have thought New Labour wouldn't be trying to further show why not to invest in the UK.
Alien lobsters versus oriental crabs in our rivers?
Tell me this isn't the very definition of Saturday night family entertainment?
It'd be like Robowars in chitinaceous exoskeletons with the added attraction that it'd appeal to a fast food promotional tie-in; 'You've seen the show! Now eat the stars coated in delicious crispy batter!'
Guys, guys, guys - think of the licensing possibilities
Since Channel 4 are clearly big Reg fans, its time for a full make-over. No more Davina - instead the lovely Asus lady will front (and what a front) all life-style programming. Phil and Kirstie will be replaced by Optimus Prime, Paris becomes the station's international correspondent, and Lester and a Devil Dog can host the evening news programme - politicians answer the questions or have their faces torn off (repeated later on More 4 + Pi).
Let's do lunch and I'm in it for 10%. Call me11
Judging by the number of stories like this:
it'd just be easier to carpet bomb the enemy with squirrels and let the vermin scamper happily into the nearest electrical substation. Result - lights go out AND fewer arborial rats.
Has anyone been invited, or know ANYONE who's been asked to join the lastest Phormulaic trials?
Or are they solely targetting the type of people who used to get excited over AOL disks coming through the letterbox?
@ Steven Knox
'a flag with stars representing the founding members '
Ummm no it doesn't. There were six founding members of the EEC - Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg and the Netherlands.
Instead, the flag is derived from the flag of the Council of Europe and has twelve stars because the number twelve has no political significance, is commonly found in European heritage and myth, and twelve stars were considered especially attractive when laid out in a circle.
...would be to fire Bebo users at Gliese 581.
Mercury does get VERY hot in the midday Sun, but it also gets VERY cold in the middle of the night. There's no atmosphere to balance temperatures, so the range is extraordinary.
Mercury also has probably not had any significant tectonic activity for a few billion years. It's a small planet so it has a high surface to volume ratio and radiated its internal store of heat into space a long time ago. There's some conflicting evidence whether any of Mercury's interior is molten or in a plastic condition, but if it ever had plate tectonics they grated to a halt in the early days of the Solar System.
With no tectonics and no atmosphere, Mercury's surface preserves features for millions, if not billions of years. Many of these craters are probably a similar age to those on the Moon and date from around 4 billion years ago. The very bright craters are relatively recent - say in the last billion years; they're bright because of the freshly-broken ejected material splashed over the surrounding terrain. They're gradually eroded by micrometeorite bombardment and the impact of solar particles.
Now what would be interesting is if we found ANY signs of recent vulcanism. Many experienced telescopic observers have seen temporary patches of brightness and light on the Moon which have been called transient lunar phenomena and might be dust or gas erupting from the deep interior. Mercury, being more massive, should be hotter inside and might even have patches of molten material finding their way to the surface.
Imaging the Apollo sites
Chandrayaan has a minimum 5m resolution so it's *possible* it can resolve the lower stages of the LMs which were left on the Moon - if not pick out any details. With favourable lighting it might even be able to image the Lunar Rovers.
If you can wait until 2009, NASA's Lunar Reconnaisance Orbiter will carry a 0.5m resolution camera into lunar orbit *AND* it'll watch a spent booster crash into the surface - now that's what I call value for money.
Wrong! How to avoid Chapter 11
Delta should offer a basic fare sans smut, but heavily promote an upgrade package for filth a la carte at 40,000 ft. If just half a cabin opt to pay a little more for stratospheric spanking on the back of the seat in front of them, Delta could remain profitable even if oil prices were to rise again.
Gerry Anderson shows us the future
'UFO' had SkyDiver (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SkyDiver) - a giant nuclear powered superfast submarine which launched a fighter aircraft.
More importantly it also had Gabrielle Drake in a very tight silver outfit...
Mmmm... where am I again?
Oh yes, splendid idea from DARPA, I shall buy string vest futures immediately.
Biggest problem with the Asus...
...there's no easy way of keeping software up-to-date without getting under the hood. Asus offer an updater for some utilities (but it's been a while since that's had anything new on it), but stuff like Firefox which is shipped with the machine, can't be updated without resorting to the command line. Okay, most of the people here won't worry about that; but just try explaining sudo to a Public used to clicking one on-screen button and being told what to do.
And this is a real problem, unless updating is going to be made as simple as on more familiar OSs, there will be plenty of unpatched machines going around. And that can't be good.
@Anonymous Coward 'Prove It'
The Bible bashers usually point to the sheer eviltude of being a friend of Dorothy being in that laugh-a-minute bit of scripture Leviticus 18:22 'You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; such thing is an abomination.'
Being the only book anyone should ever need, the Book then goes on to provide a handy pull-out-and-keep list of punishments worthy of David Blunkett; namely death.
Rational people point out the same punishment is ordered for sinners who eat prawn crackers.
Leviticus got the contempt it deserves here:
"He's a great leader and doesn't cloud his views in political correctness."
Ah, an old-fashioned bigot!
Isn't that an object that plummets from a great height at great speed producing lots of sound and light but leaving nothing behind? Possibly the best description ever made of a New Labour Apparachik.
BTW. WTF is 'the Office of the Third Sector'? It sounds like something from a low-budget science fiction movie in which Jean Claude van Damme stands up to an Orwellian future by kicking lots of people very hard.
Damn - I was hoping for a wireless link
I love my 505, but it is very much a tethered device that requires a PC to get new material. A wireless link - WiFi or cellular would turn the Reader into a truly stand-alone device and let people pick up new books no matter where they were - see an advert for a book or magazine, see an author interviewed - click a button, go get it.
Kindle is oh-so-close to being the perfect implementation of an eBook reader, but it looks like something put together by a junior craft class and it's tied to a non-standard EVDO network which prevents it from selling outside the US.
Anyone been able to leave BT whilst still in contract?
BT normally charge you the remainder of your contract fees and the price of the router if you choose to leave their delightful company before your contract expires. Has anyone here been able to escape without charge before their contract ended by claiming that Phorm, Webwise and the changes to the T&Cs have invalidated the original contract?
I know lots of people say do it, they won't chase you, but has anyone got away with it?
Any other BT Broadband people with flaky connections since yesterday?
Okay my BT connection* is slow, but it is pretty reliable. But since last night it has been falling over slightly more than a Reg journo coming back from a trade show. Websites timing out, URLs not being resolved, online gaming connections failing repeatedly.
Coincidence? Or has anyone else seen crapola performance since the Phorm trial allegedly started?
* Serving time until my contract ends or until I can summon the energy to do battle for hours on end with BT Total Broadband's appalling customer service and tell them I no longer feel bound by their unilaterally revised contract.
No sign of Phorm here
Though if any Reg reader does get the invitation of a lifetime, the lovely folks at SpyBlog would love to know more about how the system works and you could help:
...to announce a new product when the main Christmas shopping spree is in full flood.
If this thing is for real. it'll be interesting to see how they propose to support the hard disk which fits neatly on the side of the current machine and is not standard on all 360s. One way would be to make hard disks standard on all slimline 360s and gradually run down supplies of the older drives. Then to offer the newer drives with an adaptor allowing them to clip to the fatter older 360s.
Though knowing Microsoft they'll just keep two different lines of drives and gouge for each one.
@ Ralph B
The Iridium satellites are going to be up there a while yet; the only lifetimes I've seen quoted on them were the service lifetimes which were originally six to seven years. However, Iridium have extended the lifetimes as the satellites have been more reliable than expected. They have some spares in orbit and on the ground so can still provide a service even if one or more satellites dies. I think they've lost a couple already, but I'm not sure if they were DOA or died in service.
Iridium was a great idea, but like everything else from Motorola, the product sucked.
Thanks for the changes to the contract.
Since I haven't seen a BT contract since last year and I certainly haven't agreed to anything since then, I assume I'm still bound by the old T&C.
In which case, it's time to say 'bye bye BT'.
It's insane, It's dangerous, It's pointless, It's going to end horribly, and most of all - it doesn't work.
So why oh why oh why haven't the Free World's favourite big brain brigade been in touch to design a pedal-powered blimp so that America's special forces and thought-controlled pet cyborg moths can fight terror?