* Posts by Martin Budden

2125 posts • joined 27 Apr 2007

NASA's New Horizon probe rudely fires its thruster at gnome planet

Martin Budden
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Re: Genuine question

> Late for what?

Late for its table booking at Milliways.

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Martin Budden
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Re: Rounding Error

0.5 miles per hour? You misunderestimate the speed of the average hedgehog! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oN5ept1TT60

p.s. apologies for the sax

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Congratulations! You survived the leap secondocalypse

Martin Budden
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Re: Alternatives

My suggestion: decouple Earth Time (based on rotation, so yes it changes gradually) from Astronomical Time (based on atomic vibration, so it doesn't change), and at the same time (!) adopt a better system for Astronomical Time: we should have a decimal system for counting Astronomical Time. Because decimal is just better: it is our standardised counting system*. After all, once we leave Earth and head out into the vast nothingness of space, GMT/UTC is irrelevant anyway. So let's take this opportunity to have a more scientific way of doing things for Astronomical Time, and stick with when the sun rises and sets for our normal terrestrial business.

*please don't get started on the factorial advantages of base 12**: we have 10 fingers and that's that.

**or binary, or base 60, or anything else. Seriously. Everyone is used to decimal. End of story.

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Martin Budden
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@ the other Martin

You might get it in October, we get it in April ;-)

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Rosetta spots potholes IN SPAAACE: Someone call the galactic council

Martin Budden
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Flame

(singing)

I've got a burning desire for you baby, I've got a burning desire

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Martin Budden
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Childcatcher

Re: free lift to the edge of the comets trajectory anyone?

I'm pretty sure we have the capability of sticking a deep space probe into a tube and navigate the tube into one of these holes...

I remember the training simulator for that mission (codenamed "Scramble"). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=adynqfYsDus

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Martin Budden
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Boffin

Re: Did someone do the math?

They are very very clever boffins, so I'm fairly sure they did the maths.

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Martin Budden
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Re: Exogorths!

So all that out-gassing is just exogorth farts?

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Is that a FAT PIPE or are you just pleased to stream me? TERABIT fibre tested

Martin Budden
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Re: "By reusing the existing optical platform..."

You can upgrade FTTN just as easily, can't you?

Only as far as the node. FTTN leaves non-upgradeable copper for part of the system, which makes the *entire* system throttled to the slow speed of the non-upgradeable part.

consumers don't really need more than gigabit which can be done easily with copper?

Remember the classic quote "640 K ought to be enough for anybody"? Didn't turn out so well, did it!

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Martin Budden
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Megaphone

"By reusing the existing optical platform..."

And that right there is why FTTH makes sense and FTTN doesn't. Once you've got fibre going all the way, you can upgrade the signal technology as much as you like, forever. Would the Australian government please take note.

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Martin Budden
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Coat

And a third president who is exhausted from running so fast between the other two.

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Why SpaceX will sort out Sunday's snafu faster than NASA ever could

Martin Budden
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Re: How sweet to be an idiot

Bleu - did you miss the part where he politely explained that English is not his first language? Cut him some slack. I wish I could speak (type) a second language so well.

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Martin Budden
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Re: My prediction

Bleu - your downvote would have been justified if he'd chosen the handle "imanexpertatspellingandgrammar", but I reckon he's done pretty well for an idiot ;-)

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Martin Budden
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Re: Boss Euphemisms

Musk might be a @#$% but I'll bet he still has a better reputation than...

St. Jobs

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Hold my vodka, comrade – I got this: Russians blast supplies to the ISS

Martin Budden
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Re: Terminology

Agreed, it was not a normal situation for SpaceX (or for the other two failures either). Their normal situation is everything going according to plan.

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Palaeoboffins discover 500 MILLION year old ARMOURED WORM

Martin Budden
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Joke

not a worm

Every 3-year-old knows that worms don't have legs!

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Get READY: Scientists set to make TIME STAND STILL tonight

Martin Budden
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Re: Tackle the problem at source

When we are out of breath and stop running the fix gets unfixed.

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Martin Budden
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Trollface

Re: But will this answer the fundamental question of time...?

It's a song by Coldplay.

I hadn't realised that noise Coldplay makes is songs.

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Get your WELLIES to MARS: Red Planet reveals its FROZEN BOTTOM

Martin Budden
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Re: Every inhabitant of Barsoom

The only normal people are the ones you don't know very well yet.

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ESA launches new ground-monitoring satellite

Martin Budden
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Thumb Up

I haven't seen the video for that before, it is... oddly pleasing.

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THEY WANTED OUR WOMEN: Neanderthals lusted after modern humans

Martin Budden
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Re: TIL about centimorgans

Nah. A centimorgan is when you experience a little bit of Freemanic Paracusia.

https://xkcd.com/462/

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Kamikaze Rosetta probe to ram comet it's chased for billions of miles

Martin Budden
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It would be REALLY cool, I agree. But even if we do survive the mohawkalypse we won't know if Philae wakes up because we'll have splattered repeater Rosetta. D'oh.

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SpaceX gets ready to crash barge-land ANOTHER rocket

Martin Budden
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I'll go for a second-use launch, thanks. I know it works because it has already been tested, and it's not old & over-used yet.

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Fess up: which one of you Galaxies made all that gas?

Martin Budden
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I assume because each atom is a looong way from the next atom, so the chances of them bumping into each other are tiny?

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Pluto plastered in what looks like 1970s orange wallpaper – proof

Martin Budden
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obligatory

I'm just relieved it is orange, not blue:

http://xkcd.com/1532/

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Martin Budden
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Re: WTF?

Um, scientific debate?

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THIS TIME we really are ALL DOOMED, famous doomsayer prof says

Martin Budden
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Re: doom

Not if it's missing the hour hand...

If a hand is missing, calling it a clock isn't entirely* correct.

*pun intended

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Assange: 'If anyone knows about reckless behaviour, it's me'

Martin Budden
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Unhappy

bad bard

That Shakespeare quote has been absolutely ruined by putting it all in one line.

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Why is it that women are consistently paid less than men?

Martin Budden
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Re: He's got a point.

He's got a point.

Since we had kids I've gone part-time and I spend the rest (most) of my time as a house-husband looking after the little darlin's, while the missus continues to work full time and has been promoted.

So yes Worstall is right, it's a home-making pay gap, not a gender pay gap.

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Virtual reality below the prehistoric waves: David Attenborough's First Life

Martin Budden
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In ten years there will be VR headsets in every household and we'll all benefit from exhibits like this one. Keep in mind, it took about three decades for colour telly to take hold properly.

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Sun like it hot: Philae comet probe wakes up, phones home again

Martin Budden
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Re: I'm confused.

Oh wait, I just thought of a situation where a lower orbit could help. Maybe Rosetta is currently in an orbit which is *above* a geostationary orbit, in which case bringing Rosetta down into a geostationary orbit directly above Philae can give them 100% communication.

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Martin Budden
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I'm confused.

Which isn't unusual, I get confused a lot.

...the Earth-bound controllers haven't been able to communicate with it long enough to operate its ten instruments as yet... ...To rectify that, the Rosetta probe is going to fire up its thrusters and get closer to the comet's surface so that a firm data link can be achieved...

Rosetta hasn't been able to stay in contact for long enough to get useful communication going, so they are going to move Rosetta into a nearer orbit. But won't a nearer orbit reduce the orbital period, making each communication window shorter, making communication even less useful?

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POD RACING: SpaceX will build the Hyperloop railgun tube-way – you bring the ride

Martin Budden
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Trollface

Re: No human will ride

My seven-year-old loves that joke, from which I conclude that he has a much more refined sense of humour than you :-P

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Martin Budden
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Joke

Re: No human will ride

Reminds me of the old joke: what did the cat on a motorbike say?

MEEEEEOOOOOOOOWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Martin Budden
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Go

crowdsourcing

When an organisation tries to develop something new* they often get stuck on the first idea they think of, and by the time they realise there was a much better direction it's too late and they are already committed to keep going along the same path. By crowdsourcing ideas, Hyperloop has the opportunity to test multiple possible solutions before choosing the best. This seems like a sensible idea to me.

*previous atmospheric railways, maglevs, etc notwithstanding ;-)

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Sharing Economy latest: Women's BREAST MILK is the new 'liquid GOLD' of the internet

Martin Budden
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app names

Doubtless they will be proper sharing economy app-based offerings rather than oldschool websites - a dozen names ending in "r" spring to mind.

Tittr ye not! Or Knockr, Jugglr, or how about Milkr (for all she's worth).

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Martin Budden
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Re: Sickly stuff

Tried a small sip once, it was actually very good. Creamy & sweet (compared to cow's milk, anyway).

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Airbus to build 900 mini-satellites for OneWeb's orbital internet system

Martin Budden
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Calling ISRO!

I wonder if India can help? For that number of satellites I'm sure it would be worth their while developing a bespoke launch vehicle, and they have proved they can get things into space at a great price.

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Martin Budden
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Re: Um

That might be why the article says "sub-orbital" ;-)

(unless there's been a ninja edit in the article and it didn't say that when you posted)

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Why is that idiot Osbo continuing with austerity when we know it doesn't work?

Martin Budden
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Childcatcher

Stimulus works

There was only one developed nation which didn't go into recession during the GFC: Australia. Why did we escape recession? Because the aussie government did massive stimulus. Billions of it. It was a close call, but it worked. We also got a lot of new school buildings too, which is a good thing: if you are going to spend, why not spend on improving the education of those who are the future.

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Japanese female fish in sperm-producing strangeness

Martin Budden
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Headmaster

@Old Handle

there are less than three items in the list

fewer

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It's curtains for you, copper: IBM boffins push the LIGHT FANTASTIC

Martin Budden
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kitten

I assume the article picture must be of the technologically-challenged Australian prime minister, because I can see a kitten. Yes I do use the Stop Tony Meow browser extension. I love that extension.

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Martin Budden
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Unhappy

Re: IBM is a strange company

You utter bastards. I've been trying really hard to forget WAS and now you've made me think of it again.

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ISS 'nauts quit orbiter and aim for Kazakhstan splashdown

Martin Budden
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Pint

Re: LOHAN opportunity???

That would be a whole different adventure, one also worth doing. Ad Astra Tabernamque!

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FLYING SAUCER crashes into Pacific off Hawaii - NASA

Martin Budden
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The bowls of petunias also.

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Moon blocks Uranus for stargazers Down Under

Martin Budden
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Obligatory Futurama

Professor Hubert Farnsworth: I'm sorry, Fry, but astronomers renamed Uranus in 2620 to end that stupid joke once and for all.

Fry: Oh. What's it called now?

Professor Hubert Farnsworth: Urrectum. Here, let me locate it for you.

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The Martian: Matt Damon sciences the sh*t out of the red planet

Martin Budden
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Re: I'd watch it.

Avatar was Dances with Smurfs

Avatar was a remake of FernGully.

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Nobel bro-ffin: 'Girls in the lab fall in love with me ... then start crying'

Martin Budden
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WTF?

Re: Thing is,

Why does Tim Hunt think a lab is any different from any other workplace?

I work in an office. There are women and there are men. We know to keep our working relationships professional. We know about the rules regarding appropriate (and inappropriate) behaviour. We all get along fine. Work gets done.

What is so special about him that none of this applies to him???

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ROBOTS in sinister public-relations push ahead of coming WAR ON HUMANS

Martin Budden
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Pint

I'm seriously impressed.

I wasn't expecting an untethered autonomous robot to be able to do all that - and so quickly! Congratulations to the humans who built the robots.

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Bill Nye's bonkers LightSail spaceship unfurls solar sails at last

Martin Budden
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Re: Changing direction...

In order to sail into the wind/photons a craft must have (a) sails angled so that the "lift" created is forward of the beam and (b) lateral resistance against water/space. The first requirement can be met by boats and also by spacecraft, the second requirement cannot be met by spacecraft.

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