* Posts by Martin Budden

2052 posts • joined 27 Apr 2007

SpaceX signs off on another successful mission with Pacific splashdown

Martin Budden
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A zero-g washing machine would need a counter-rotating flywheel (or you could have two washing machines spinning in opposite directions).

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Martin Budden
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Re: Worm form?

The day I find space stuff boring will be the day I stop living.

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Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Bog-standard boxty

Martin Budden
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I feel blessed to have a daughter, not punished.

p.s. I feel equally blessed to have a son, too.

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Martin Budden
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Re: 'Boys'

I think this may be the first comment so far which shows a good attitude toward being a father.

Daughters should *not* be locked away until they are 56. Shotguns (and even jokes about shotguns) are *not* appropriate. Listen to your daughter, be there for her, support her, by all means give gentle guidance but don't be pushy about it, and remember that it's better to allow her choice of beau into your home where you know she is safe than to drive her away through disapproval.

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Martin Budden
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Re: Whiznot

It's Irish, not British (It's similar to conflating Mexico with USA).

It's a bit harsh to compare Mexico to Britain ;-)

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NASA plots interplanetary cubesat swarms

Martin Budden
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Re: Hmmm

We can avoid this by designing the service module to de-orbit itself (even if it stops working completely, i.e. it should have a fast-ish orbital decay).

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BOFH: Getting to the brown, nutty heart of the water cooler matter

Martin Budden
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Re: Medical Students

You speak the truth.

I was told about that trick by my high school biology teacher, so when a consultant tried it at medical school I was already wise to it and I did the finger switcheroo just like the consultant had. He noticed me switch, but the student next to me didn't...

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Pundits ponder perilous placement of STANDING STONES on Comet 67P

Martin Budden
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Re: Menhirs...?

Well he did go to Rome, Britain, Africa, even as far as India... but I don't remember him ever going into space.

He probably just threw the menhirs, and they've stuck into the comet pointy end first.

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LOHAN's final test flight set to honour PRATCHETT

Martin Budden
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If it wasn't for PRATCHETT we'd all be waiting for CLARKSON's balloon to burst (again).

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Martin Budden
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Re: Boring

At least you are able to make such a statement from a position of authority, because your much more interesting suggestion collected many more votes.

Oh wait...

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ATTACK of the DINKY DRONES! US military creates ROBOTIC CARRIER PIGEON

Martin Budden
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Re: IP over Avian Carriers

It's not mythical, it's standard industry practise. Google does it: http://royal.pingdom.com/2007/04/11/fedex-still-faster-than-the-internet/.

"Ah but that was eight years ago" I hear you say. Good point: has the internet overtaken a van full of disks since then? If not, will it ever? These questions have been answered as only xkcd can: https://what-if.xkcd.com/31/.

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Martin Budden
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Black Helicopters

IP over Avian Carriers

Real life implementations of RFC 1149 / RFC 2549 / RFC 6214 have proved that small flying things carrying memory cards can provide faster data transfer rates than broadband internet.

Icon: probably actual size in a few years from now!

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US Navy's LOCUST DRONE CANNON is like death SWARMED up

Martin Budden
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Using my house as an example, your rail-gun idea isn't going to work:

1. I live much much further than 20-50 miles from the nearest (sea-connected) navigable water.

2. That mountain range I can see from my window is a pretty effective shield.

3. Even if I did live within 20-50 miles in an area with no significant topography, a rail-gun slug (or any kind of unguided artillery) isn't going to be single-house-accurate over that range because of all the wobbly air it must pass through.

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Australian dark matter hunter wins AU$1.75 million funding

Martin Budden
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Re: A new low

p.s. I hope nobody suggests we should use the "Tips and corrections" link: I've tried it before on several occasions and never had any kind of response, so I don't believe it does anything.

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Martin Budden
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Re: A new low

Shirley Rihcard Chigrwin haz speel chekker?

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You're going to have stop calling people 'cold fish': THIS one is HOT-BLOODED

Martin Budden
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Pint

rete mirabile

As a homebrewer I can attest to the excellent efficiency of a counter-flow heat exchanger: near-boiling wort entering my plate chiller is cooled to around 20C in just a couple of seconds as it passes through, and the cold tap water flowing in the opposite direction comes out too hot to touch.

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CSI GALAXY: Cause of death = STRANGULATION

Martin Budden
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Re: Who killed them?

yportne

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LOHAN's final test flight moniker: The people must decide

Martin Budden
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Go

Obvious solution: move house.

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Martin Budden
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A strong sentimental vote, yes, and appropriately so: he was a truly great person.

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PHOTON SPACE SAIL successfully Kickstarted into orbit

Martin Budden
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Re: 32 square metre (it sounds better as 344 square feet)

0.04 square brontosauruses (just don't ask me where to find a brontosaurus that shape).

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BUZZKILL. Honeybees are dying in DROVES - and here's a reason why

Martin Budden
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Re: my solution

If you remove yourself first, I promise to seriously consider following you.

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Martin Budden
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Pehaps the depatment of piates stole the ''

aaghh me heaties

They've done it again!

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Attack of the possibly-Nazi clone parakeet invaders

Martin Budden
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Re: A Final Solution?

onna stick?

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Japanese astro-boffins race to recover pulsar-spotting balloon basket

Martin Budden
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Re: balloon crashing on takeoff in 2010

Looking at the angle of the dangle before release, it was pretty bloody obvious what was going to happen next.

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Martin Budden
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Re: hopefully the 'chopper' is an autogyro

You have linked to a picture of Eric Bana, but I get the idea ;-)

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Rare monkeys stolen from French zoo – now even rarer

Martin Budden
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Re: Hopefully soon...

You've all gone bananas.

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NASA plans electrolysis-powered ROBOT EEL for Europa's oceans

Martin Budden
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Re: Eureka!

You do realise that an Archimedes screw operates at an angle and won't work vertically up a space elevator, don't you?

And do you have any idea how much power would be needed to lift enough water to make a noticeable difference to sea levels?

Finally (and assuming AGW sea-level rise is real, I really don't want to get into that debate here, let's just assume it is and carry on, ok), what do you think will happen to sea levels once climate returns to its "usual" state if we have removed so much water already? That's right, sea levels go down from "usual" levels.

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Martin Budden
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Power?

That sounds like a large amount of leccy they hope to harvest from "locally changing magnetic fields", what with all the electronics and electrolysis. Can such a source really supply enough?

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Russia delays ISS crew mission over Progress launch safety fears

Martin Budden
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Go

Congratulations to Samantha Cristoforetti!

She'll be wizzing over us for an extra month ;-)

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ISS 'naut: How we collect our POO and DROP it FLAMING on hapless Earthlings

Martin Budden
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Re: Seems Wasteful

any missed bacteria could cause an outbreak of dysentery, salmonella or something much worse

For such an outbreak to occur one of the astronauts would need to be already carrying "dysentery, salmonella or something much worse", which is very unlikely given the health checks carried out before leaving Earth. An occurrence of E. Coli food poisoning would be possible because it can exist in healthy people's lower intestine.

Sterilising poo is actually quite simple though, heat and/or UV light will do the trick, both of which are in plentiful supply on the ISS (due to all the unfiltered sunshine).

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Martin Budden
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Trollface

Re: I wonder

Probably, because it's not even slightly humorous.

(ducks for cover)

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SOD TABLETS, if you want to get anything done travelling get a ... yes, a LAPTOP

Martin Budden
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Re: Plus one vote for the 90s tv appearance digitisation

It's strange that so many people start a family but you never hear of anyone finishing a family. In that respect, families are a lot like EDRMS implementations.

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BILLION YEAR SECRETS of baking hellworld Mercury UNLOCKED by NASA probe crash

Martin Budden
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Re: Mercury's ancient magnetic field

Mercury's newest magnetic field(s) came courtesy of the addition of Messenger components to Mercury.

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ALIEN HUNT: Water similar to life-bearing Earth lakes FOUND ON MOON of Saturn

Martin Budden
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Oh fishy, fishy, fishy, fish.

"...similar to our planet's soda lakes such as Mono Lake in California or Lake Magadi in Kenya. While no fish survive in those lakes..."

Except for Lake Magadi in Kenya which does have fish.

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Facebook 'fesses up to running an ideological echo chamber

Martin Budden
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I'd like more active input please FB.

Google's News & Weather app on Android has a section called "Suggested for you" and for each article there it specifically asks me if I'm interested in the topic of that article: right now it is asking me "Are you interested in Archimedes?" with an up-thumb and a down-thumb. If I click the up-thumb then in the future I'll get more articles about Archimedes. I like this because I can down-thumb topics such as One Direction and never have to hear about them again.

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Astroboffins eyeball MONSTER GAS HALO hugging Andromeda Galaxy

Martin Budden
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Hubble time!

That subhead makes me want to dance around in MC Hammer pants.

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Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Cuy Chactado – Deep-fried guinea pig

Martin Budden
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Re: Support your local farmer

KIVA is awesome, I have several loans on the go. Each time a loan is repaid I re-lend the money on to the next project. It's a great way to help people help themselves.

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Weird ARCHAEAN LIFE FORM found at 'Loki's Castle' DEEP beneath Arctic Circle

Martin Budden
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Re: You don't know what you are messing with down there.

Who would win in a fight between Cthulhu and The Sheeple?

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Martin Budden
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Re: Oh Hell

I just love the idea of some intrepid astronaut discovering dark matter on the sole of his/her boot.

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Martin Budden
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Re: Eukaryon with your research

When the subtitle writer thought of that one he knew it was his loki day.

(or she, if applicable)

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SpaceX Dragon crew capsule in 'CHUTE ABORT drama – don't panic, no one died

Martin Budden
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Re: Slight oops

"If you can walk away from a landing, it's a good landing." - Chuck Yeager says this didn't count as an oops.

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Take cover! Out-of-control Russian spaceship to smash into Earth within hours

Martin Budden
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Is there some website which tracks its location in real time so we can see if it might be about to pass overhead?

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Mars needs TRAFFIC COP to stop probe prangs, says NASA

Martin Budden
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Re: Americans, Indians and Europeans....

It doesn't matter how many guns you have, you still have to give way to the lighthouse.

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Shields up! Shields up! ASTRONAUTS flying to MARS will arrive BRAIN DAMAGED, boffins claim

Martin Budden
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Re: Tinfoil Hats?

Please keep in mind I was replying to a post which suggested that the majority of the 400 tons of water was for shielding and only a small amount of that would be needed as propellant: see my emphasis below. (p.s. I haven't checked the feasibility of Voland's right hand's proposal so I admit I am making one assumption there by accepting the hand's suggestion). This is important because it means much less than 400 tons would be needed to be lifted from Earth to LEO to be used as propellant.

The only way to provide reasonable shielding is if the astronauts are shielded by the propellant. 1m of water goes a very long way towards shielding both nuclear propulsion and cosmic rays. 1m tank + shield around a sphere with 10m radius is ~ 400 tons. If some of this water is used as a propellant to get to Mars orbit and back you are also looking at a journey time under 30 days.

It is a lovely chart, yes I've seen it before, and thanks for reminding me of it. What the chart shows is that the Δv needed to get from LEO to Mars (9.51) is pretty much the same as the Δv needed to get from Earth to LEO (9.4). So, it's do-able. Especially if Voland's right hand is correct and the propellant needed to go from LEO to Mars and back is only a small part of the 400 tons of water.

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Martin Budden
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Re: Tinfoil Hats?

The problem is getting all that water onto the spaceship in the first place. If you are launching from Earth - not a way in hell. It is not feasible.

The ISS is more than 400 tons. Should I call the astronauts on board to tell them their home is not feasible?

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Martin Budden
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Re: Not really equivalent

So what you are basically saying is that 21 pints spread across a week is barely noticeable but the same amount of booze in one evening might result in unscheduled regurgitation? Fair enough.

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Why should I learn by ORAL tradition? Where's the DOCUMENTATION?

Martin Budden
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Re: Sorry if it's an obvious question, but...

It always amuses me that so much effort can go into software development without any of the developers bothering to make notes on how to use their own software.

A long time ago I had to write train-the-trainer for some new software: the original functional spec was of some help. Between the spec and the finished product I was able to work out how it all worked (and I found & reported a few bugs along the way).

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Bonny Scottish post-pub nosh neckfiller: Rumbledethumps

Martin Budden
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I grew turnips for the first time last year, and was surprised how good they are when young and fresh.

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El Reg merch tentacle mulls retro LOHAN T-shirt

Martin Budden
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Re: Dish-washers

Most printed-to-order mugs and glassware should be hand-washed. The stuff that goes in dishwashing powder/tablets is very strong.

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Quid-A-Day Nosh Posse chap in 'desperate' cash shortage

Martin Budden
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Re: Cheers to those who've tried this

Even a couple of loaves of bread would get 5000 for not much more.

Just out of interest, does it work out cheaper if you buy flour and a bit of yeast instead of bread and bake the loaves yourself?

EDIT: you don't even need to buy yeast if you make sourdough, and it's a lot tastier than rice.

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