60 posts • joined Friday 3rd July 2009 20:52 GMT
"U-2" toy plane from the 1960's?
My brother got it as a gift 1964-65, plastic sailplane like body with foam wings and timer for camera (127 film, half frame). He never got the thing to fly long enough to get a picture, but he was all of 9 years old at the time.
Re: Clueless rubes from somewhere else...
Take a look at the California ISO website sometime during late summer and pay special attention to the solar output versus statewide load. Solar production peaks at 12 Noon, where peak load typically occurs at 6PM. This is not exactly news as I heard a PG&E engineer caution solar power enthusiasts about the time difference between peak solar product and peak power system load circa 1975.
There have been proposals for solar thermal plants using molten salts as both a heat transfer mechanism and thermal storage mechanism, permitting several hours of electric energy production after sunset. Another work-around is to redesign structures to have a higher thermal mass, run the A/C like crazy when the sun is shining and using the stored "cool" after sunset.
Re: It's called a slash
QDOS/86-DOS/PC-DOS/MS-DOS copied much of the CP/M API much the same way that Linux copied the UNIX API, but it was a rather different beast underneath. The COPY command was more like the UNIX cp command than PIP, though COPY was internal to command.com. DOS did not have or need anything like the MOVECPM command. TSR capability was part of DOS from the 86-DOS days. MS-DOS 2.X introduced subdirectories, rudimentary stdin/stdout and a form of piping to be a bit more like UNIX.
Re: Dead boomers already?
The peak year for births in the US was 1957, so the baby boom in the US lasted well past the early 1950's. With life expectancies in the high 70's, it will a while before the boomers start dying off in large numbers. WW2 vets on the other hand are starting to get scarce, with the youngest at 85 - and a large number of baby boomers are children of WW2 vets.
My recollection is that the hangars are in Tustin (where I-405 splits off I-5 in Orange County). This is about 2 miles from where I now work, so may have to take some fresh air breaks next week.
For you Lost in Space fans...
The Cassinin was launched one day before the fictional launch of the Jupiter 2.
It is great to see that Cassini is still collecting data.
COPY != PIP
IIRC, PIP was a separate executable file, while COPY was internal to COMMAND.COM in at least 86-DOS if not QDOS. What M$ did to make PC-DOS 1.0 out of 86-DOS 1.14 was to change the prompt from A: to A>, added "DEL" as an alias for ERASE and not ship the SCP utilities such as the assembler, the Z80 code translator and READCPM.
86-DOS allowed AUX, CON and PRN to be treated as filenames, where CP/M required some gyrations to use device names in place of a disk filename.
Re: Get 'em in by Friday
Song title was Get 'em OUT by Friday - though I can se wanting to get the brew in by Friday...
Reminds me of when the Reg covered the giant hogweed invasion in New York state...
100 kg a microsatellite?
Sounds more like a mini-satellite to me. A microsatellite would be more along the lines of Vanguard 1, which weighed in at 1.5kg.
Silver and shiny
Cesium needs to be in an inert atmosphere to say silver and shiny. Perusing an MSDS on metallic cesium would discourage most people from wanting to deal with the non-radioactive stuff.
Don't you mean radioactive cesium?
Note that radio-isotopes can easily be detected at levels far below what would be considered harmful. As an example, Carbon 14 dating works because all food sources have some carbon-14 in them, but there has been no hysteria about removing carbon 14 from the food chain.
The global impact of radiation leakage from Fukushima is still dwarfed by the remnants of atmospheric testing of nuclear weapons. It is also even less of an issue on a global scale than naturally occurring radioactive materials such as the potassium 40 in your body.
The Milwaukee speeds were from timings aboard regular runs of the Hiawatha between Milwaukee and Chicago. While the peak DBHP occurred below 100 MPH. the loco's were still putting out a significant amount of power. One limitation for the top speed of steam locomotives is dynamic augment, which is lessened with 84 inch drivers and just three coupled axles on the 3463.
As far as the Pennsy T-1's, the design spec called for 100 MPH with 1,000 trailing tons.
Also bear in mind that larger American loading gauge allows for larger boilers - with the gas flow area being critical for power production.
I'd bet on the AT&SF Hudson - similarly design loco's used by the Milwaukee (Baltics on the CMStP&P) were hitting 105 - 110 MPH in regular service while pulling a much heavier train than the Mallard on its record run. The Pennsy T-1 would almost certainly be faster, there were reports of it hitting 125 MPH in service.
PWR's??? Make that BWR's
How can one take your posting seriously if you don't know the difference between a Pressurized Water Reactor and a Boiling Water Reactor? FWIW, Fukushima used BWR's.
PWR's can be set up for natural convection cooling, with the main problem in supplying make-up water to the secondary side.
The book came out several years ago
The authors made a pretty good argument that the rivets played an important role, and the press release does a very poor job of summarizing the book.
The key point is that the rivets on the first and last fifth of the ship had to be set by hand, which required that the rivets be made from wrought iron as opposed to steel. The rivets on the other three fifths of the ship were set with hydraulic clamps, which allowed the use of steel rivets. It is extremely difficult to make wrought iron with the same consistency as steel.
The authors pointed out that icebergs have a slushy surface, so an impact would cause the hull plates to bend rather than tear as would be the case of striking a coral reef. The failure of the rivets to hold the hull plates together allowed a much larger volume of water to enter the hull. Had the rivets held, the Titanic may have had enough pumping capacity to allow it to reach port or take a much longer time to sink.
The poor quality of rivets was by no means the only stupid mistake that lead to the sinking of the Titanic.
4,800A/m is the the magnetomotive force ("H") that the watch will withstand before malfunctioning. In free space, that will induce a flux density ("B") of 0.06T or 600 gauss. That's well below what a typical MRI magnet will produce, but high enough that you won't have to worry about letting your watch get close to conductors carrying high currents.
Re: ".. there may be a boom in the field in the coming years"
The XB-70 preceded the Viggen by a few years, though the canard on the '70 was smaller in relation to the main wing than was the case for the Viggen.
The aircraft in the picture reminded me of the "flying sub" from Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea.
Prior art on LED color mixing
I remember an article in a 1970's issue of Model Railroader magazine about using a combined red/green LED to model a 3 color searchlight signal. The red and green aspects were naturally generated by lighting the respective elements of the LED, the yellow aspect was simulated by rapidly alternating between red and green. It would seem obvious to anyone skilled in the art that PWM could be used to control the level of mixing.
If we're going to have a storage equivalent of Godwins law, we might as well name it after the first lady of programming...
Anti-neutrons do exist
The reason that the anti-proton has a negative charge is that the anti-quarks that make up the anti-proton have the opposite charge from the quarks that make up a proton. The proton contains two quarks with plus 2/3 charge and one with minus 1/3 charge. The neutron contains 1 quark with plus 2/3 charge and two with minus 1/3 charge for a net charge of zero. The anti-neutron contains two anti-quarks with plus 1/3 charge and one anti-quark with minus 2/3 charge.
ZFS takes care of reason "E" in two ways. First is a much larger checksum, making it unlikely that disk errors will pass unnoticed. Second is disk scrubbing that regulars reads all of the disk data to spot incipient disk failure, usually signaled by read retries.
Oxygen vacancies - not that odd of an idea
If the oxygen vacancy leads to formation of unpaired electron spins, then there would be an associated magnetic flux. Since there are many materials where the resistance is dependent on magnetic flux, the presence or absence of unpaired spins could have an effect on resistance.
Chua's postulated interaction of charge and flux doesn't make too much sense in classical electrodynamics, but does make more sense at the quantum level.
Interaction chrage and flus
Leon Chua's original definition was an interaction of charge and flux - more precisely a relationship between dphi/dt and dq/dt. The simplest physical mechanism I can think of is that the charge is a set of spins (i.e. charge) and their associated magnetic flux - a form of spintronics if you will. I don't particularly see it coming out of classical electrodynamics (Maxwell's equations) in the same way as a resistor, capacitor or inductor.
I was impressed with Professor Chue's teaching style in EECS 105, ended with my one and only A+ at Cal (this class was also my introduction to SPICE). He mixed in some real world examples with is discussion of the theory.
Thought Cardiff was only 33 degrees N
Oh that's Cardiff and not Cardiff-by-the Sea.... (Latter being 117d16m W, 33d01m N).
Cold for San Diego
FWIW, 50F (15C) was the nighttime low, the high temp being closer to 65F (18C). This pretty well matched the typical lows and highs in coastal San Diego for June and July 2010.
Might slightly increase the likelyhood of meltdowns
The main concern about "the grid" during a solar storm is large DC currents flowing through the windings of the transformers that terminate long distance transmission lines. To save save and money on electrical insulation, the high voltage windings are Wye "Y" connected with a grounded neutral. This allows the common mode (zero sequence) currents to flow from the ground on one transformer to the ground of another. The concern is that there is not enough resources to repair more than a handful of the transformers in a short period of time.
The simplistic way of preventing damage to the transformers is to open up the disconnect switches or circuit breakers. The problem is that these devices are designed to open currents with zero crossings (i.e. AC) and may have problems disrupting a large DC current.
A better solution is to equip the long AC lines with series capacitors, which will also improve power flow. These would prevent DC current from flowing (realizing that DC current is redundant) and likely prevent the damage from geomagnetic storms.
HVDC lines may be a different story.
Having trouble recognizing sarcasm?
This is Lewis at his finest, taking some story that has a bunch of scaremongers doing their best at scaremongering and making great fun of it.
Then again, he might be off his meds...
Venus based workstation?
If my math is correct, the performance of the Venus processor is above 100 gigaflops per socket. While the total power consumption of the K supercomputer is pretty outrageous, the watts per socket figure is quite reasonable for a desktop.
U233 is relatively nice for weapons
As other posters have pointed out, "U233" has a high gamma output from the U232 that comes as part of the U233 production process, much the same way that Pu240 is produced in conjunction with Pu239. The main gamma line from U232 is relatively low energy and is thus easy to shield to the point where it isn't a major threat to personnel (not so easy to shield from an isotope identification survey).
The "It's tough being a bug" feature at Disney's California adventure had something similar in the seats, designed to feel like bugs crawling under your seat. An even earlier and cruder form of this was the seats in the "Rocket to the Moon" ride back in the 60's and early 70's, the seats vibrated to simulate the vibrations of a real rocket.
If there is any water around, the Cesium will react to form CsOH plus hydrogen gas. Melt-downs from slow uncovering of the fuel (e.g. TMI and Fukushima) still leave copious amounts of water in the reactor vessel to react with the cesium. The earlier estimates for 60% did not take water into account.
The experience with TMI was that six orders of magnitude less radioactive iodine was released compared to what had been expected.
Correction on Libel suit
Tim Paterson "rebuke" by the judge was not due to lack of a case, it doesn't take much digging to demonstrate that QDOS had seriously different internals than CP/M, e.g. INT 21H calls for accessing the API, FAT versus bitmap for managing disks, COPY as a built-in command.com function versus the external PIP, etc.
The rebuke was that Tim Paterson was supposedly a "public" person and thus had to meet a higher standard for libel than a private person.
MS-DOS on SCP hardware
DOS on Seattle Computer Products could address over 900K of memory. Tim Paterson mentioned that Microsoft kept a couple of SCP machines around for linking the linker. Since SCP machines were normally used with terminals, there was no need to set aside memory for the display.
IOMMU on SPARC for years
While not sure about other SPARC processors, the US-IIIi had IOMMU when first shipping ca 2003. Pity that Intel took a number of years to catch up.
Burning the place down is low order
Many explosives will burn quite nicely as long as the combustion products are not confined, so the hope was burning the house down would ignite but not detonate the explosives. Another part of the low order technique was putting up a barricade in case the low order suddenly became high order.
One thing not covered in the article was whether the owner of the house was reimbursed for the loss - Dumanis was originally threatening to collect the demolition fees from her.
FWIW, I used to drive by there daily on I-15 before moving to the coast.
233U is usable for weapons
Thorium reactors convert thorium to 233U, which is a reasonable material for weapons, especially in that it doesn't have the neutron production problem of Plutonium (spontaneous fission of 240Pu).
What's funny about the talk of thorium reactors is that quite a bit of work was done in the US, General Atomic's HTGR program and Rickover's LWBR conversion of the Shippingport reactor.
Metal water reactions
The hydrogen comes from the byproduct of water interacting with very hot (1000+C) metal which resulted from parts of the fuel rods being uncovered. What's going on there is very similar to what happened at Three Mile Island, with a rather different initiating cause.
Parshall, hmmm, name seems familiar
In addition to being the COO of Codeweavers, Jon Parshall is one of the authors of the book "Shattered Sword", which is one of the best books written about the Battle of Midway.
Not to mention Amazon's business model
Amazon's business model with the Kindle relies on being able to enforce the DRM on the e-books.- can you imagine the defense that people could put if charged by Amazon for DMCA violations? In addition, it would be interesting to see Bezos's tax records leaked....
WSJ's Best of the Web
This was also brought up on last Friday's Best of the Web in that viewing Wikileaks on a US government PC would result in a giant IT headache.
It was pre 9/11
The KAL bombing took place some 15 years before 9/11, so the atmosphere was a lot less paranoid back then. Also recall that Yousef (sp?) was very close to using liquid explosives to down several airliners in the 1995-96 time frame. He did succeed in killing one passenger in a trial run.
FWIW, the FAA did start some R&D work on detecting liquid explosives in the late 1980's.
Oldest vulnerability? BSD yacc
The OpenBSD group discovered a vulnerability in the BSD version of yacc that dated back to 1975 - coincidentally the same time I was at Cal...
IIRC, the OpenBSD dev's found the problem when the Sparc64 port of yacc was dumping core. I would guess that porting software to different architectures uncovers more bugs than the "many eyeballs" approach.
2.5.1 supported x86
In late 1998, I picked up a set of freeware CD-ROMs for Solaris, the package said the software was for 2.5.1 and later and contained both SPARC and x86 binaries. Since Sun sold a 386 based workstation in the late 1980's, I'd suspect that x86 support started much earlier than 2.5.1.
One benefit to supporting both x86 and SPARC is that porting between platforms will uncover a lot of subtle bugs - much the same reason that the OpenBSD developers keep support for a lot of platforms.
I'd guess that the magnet is a cylindrical Halbach array, especially if they're eventually aiming for a 2T field. This would imply that the sample volume is on the order of a couple of mm in diameter. This kinda rules out using the magnet for detecting liquid explosives in sealed containers (though a a larger Halbach array works nicely for that).
Lacking a mention of the homogeneity of the magnet, I'd wonder if the magnet would be capable of high resolution proton NMR, though the high field would be useful for Phosphorus or other biologically significant nuclides. With the small sample volume, the RF power requirements would be pretty modest, so it would be possible to make an easily portable NMR spectrometer using that magnet.
I happened to watch Mystery Men just before meeting Dr. Casanova, so can't help thinking of Casanova Frankenstein when I see his name.
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