188 posts • joined Tuesday 7th September 2010 14:48 GMT
No matter how many times I read the headline, it seems that the use of "-'nads" (*) conditions my brain to mis-read "waking" and makes me think "hmm, didn't know sharks were in to that sort of thing. Thought that was dolphins".
Naughty headline writers forcing our innocent reader's brains to think of such things...
(*) Could also be "Banks", I suppose.
Re: Backup software for HDD and Cloud
Upvote for Cloudberry (and their technical support). I've used it for a couple of years running off WHS (and now from Server 2012 Essentials) to backup to Amazon S3 but it now supports loads of other destinations too. So kind of a double backup really: PC -> WHS/Essentials -> S3
Indeed - think about how many millions (billions? trillions?) of man-hours of development have led to the current state of safety for trains, planes and automobiles with regard to both their flamable fuel (which Tesla need to do again for batteries) and with things like crumple zones, body cages, etc. (which Tesla can just use as is).
Re: I was going to make a "Spare some piss guv?" joke
You could have gone with "Spare a penny, guv?"
Or is that just a UK-ism?
bit of a repost but:
How about using strips of foil that have a notch in them? If you align the clamps at each end of the foil to be slightly non-parallel then you can make sure that the tearing force concentrates at the notch. Bit like tearing a sheet of paper by putting a fold in it, making a small tear at the top and then just pulling the top corners.
Should be fairly robust and flexible on the way up if the rocket wobbles with respect to the truss but should tear with pretty minimal force when the rocket wants to leave.
Working both ends of the problem
Clearly I'm not an expert (as I shall now reveal with this question) but, as well as trying to mitigate the amount of damaging radiation that hits you in the first place - with lead, water, "force fields", etc. - what are the prospects for being able to just fix the damage?
Medical nano technology clearly isn't there yet, but is it within in the realms of plausibility (in the same kind of timescales that we are talking about for travelling to Mars, etc.) to imagine that you could have nanobots roaming within you that could just fix up a reasonable amount of the radiation damage or at least cleanly dispose of newly formed cancerous cells, etc.?
If only all the other agencies of the US government were as well mannered and discreet as the Californian Coast Guard...
Re: They used to be protected against the Irons.
Doesn't have quite the same ring to it though:
From Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic a kettle curtain has descended across the Continent...
(*) - or churchillian, indeed
Re: Self Curling?
Even though it was full of computers the desks were those lab bench type things with thin metal legs bolted to the (polished wood) floor. So you self launched on your 5-point caster chair down one aisle by grabbing one table leg and one bookcase and then had to handle the cornering force to do a right angle turn off the last table leg into the second aisle. Points awarded for accuracy of the right angle turn and speed with which you hit the cupboard at the end of the second aisle (which obviously required you to have achieved a reasonably accurate turn).
and the other half of the farriers job is trimming the hoof itself. Now I appreciate that part of the trimming is to help it fit the shoe, so arguably that part becomes unnecessary, but the other purpose of the trimming is also just general "hoof care" so will still be needed.
<serious comment in reply to delightfully subtle sarcastic one!>
Re: If only someone had told them..
Having just read Charles Stross' "Equoid" this half-horse comment raises further disturbing mental images and also the thought that horse shoes made of lead might be safer...
Re: A neat trick
I'm reminded of a science fiction story - probably Arthur C Clarke, possibly "Imperial Earth" - in which he notes the momentous day on which every phone call on the planet, to/from anywhere, became a "local call". I'm also guessing that he reckoned that date should already have passed but it seems that in real life we have some way to go.
got to find your multipass first though?
I always found that hiding behind a large cushion or your Dad worked too. Now that I am a Dad I'm thinking there is a flaw in this theory ...
Unless in becoming a Dad you acquire invulnerability to DWE's. Or perhaps you just acquire the appearance of such invulnerability. Hmmm.
Re: These guys are old.
Although there are many cases in science/maths where the person who has their name on it isn't necessarily the most deserving of it (a) this isn't the case this time and (b) there would be a certain confusion caused by awarding the nobel prize "to Alice, Bob and Carol (but not Dave) for the discovery of the Dave particle".
c.f. my frothing at the mouth when anyone suggests the UK should drop GMT. "But the G stands for Greenwich - which is right over there! I can see it out my window! Look! Look at it! There's a hill with the observatory on top! You can go and stand on 0 degrees! Arrrggghhhhh!"
To be fair to the media (*)
I wasn't really paying much attention and I still ended knowing two "facts" about the protest:
1 - that it was a protest against fracking at an oil drilling site (turned out to be correct)
2 - that some of the protesters had previous form protesting against coal mine closures (no idea if true or not but seemed kind of hypocritcal)
(*) - although it does feel weird
About 10 years ago the company I worked for was offered a trial of an incredibly expensive 3d printing machine and my first question was "do you reckon you could print a nut and bolt that were screwed together, take it out the machine and unscrew it?". The general consensus was "no, not really". But seeing the detail you've got there, I'm starting to think maybe we're nearly there ...
Re: Thorium reactors
I guess I have the same questions about the Fusion Polywell thing (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polywell). Sounds plausible (to a non-physicist) but "what's the catch?". Even the initial estimates of the cost to produce a realistic sized prototype were being quoted in units of $100M as opposed to investments in "standard" fusion which is measured in $10B units. The cost of just building a plain old nuclear plant are measured in $100M to $1B units. So by any of those measures isn't it worth just building a bigger polywell and finding out?
Re: Journal of Cosmology?
well, you had your cake with the headline but you got to eat it too with these gems: "(get your pinch of salt ready)" and, my fave, "suspiciously easy to read" !
Re: Journal of Cosmology?
The Bad Astronomer has a full takedown on this: http://www.slate.com/blogs/bad_astronomy/2013/09/20/et_claims_of_alien_life_in_earth_s_atmosphere_are_unfounded.html
tl;dr - is this evidence of microbes from space? No, not even close
Isn't there a bit of a risk that if you attempt an analysis based on "this is how freight and passengers currently move around the world using method X,Y and Z so new method Q will only be able to take r% of the traffic" then you are not taking into account new traffic generation? The last couple of decades have shown that, yes, some new technogies really are just solutions looking for needs (and disappear shortly thereafter) but that in some cases it turns out there was a hidden need that just wasn't serviced by X,Y or Z but for which Q is just perfect. I don't have any ideas what that might be in this case but, for example, everyone who analysed the mobile phone market 10 years ago and said "I've analysed current phone usage and there is no demand for a phone that is too big to fit in your pocket and, seriously, why would it need a camera?" is probably feeling pretty silly now.
Re: Suggested equivalents:
Watching someone feed the offending document into a shredder as you all stand around in a room that you earlier wallpapered with photocopies of that document.
In the context of someone saying "Now we want the stuff back" about a digital file I think we have to resort to mis-quoting Babbage: "I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a demand."
Re: The UK seat-belt PSA
oh, the one that ends with something like "... and then, after he had killed her, he sat back down" ? Yes, even thinking of it again now gives me the shivers (in a bad way).
Re: Mr. Archibald Buttle
Don't you mean Tuttle ... <bzzzt> ... Tuttle ... <bzzzt> ... Tuttle ... <splat> <brrt> ... Buttle ... <bzzzt> Tuttle ?
If I recall, by the end of the film it was actually most of the orcs, etc. too. Started to get a bit off-putting as I felt the movements were too realistic espcially in comparison next to the clearly still animated main characters. At the time I heard that doing the "crowd scenes" this way was cheaper as there were some financial difficulties (hence no part 2, etc.). Hiring a bunch of people to dress up a bit and run around some fields waving swords then hiring people who can trace over them is presumably cheaper than hiring a sufficient number of qualified animators.
Surprised that A Scanner Darkly didn't get mentioned in the context of rotoscoping. Whatever you thought of the story (or of Keanu!) I found it quite captivating the way that things appeared to become clearer even as they moved away and moved out of focus. Not sure I'd want every film to be like that but it worked for me in that film.
There was also a tie-in with a round-the-world yacht race
Around '94 or '95 they also did some kind of tie in with one of the round the world yacht races - possibly the Global Challenge. Much lower barrier to entry which meant, rather to my surprise, I ended up winning a day out at a Land Rover offroad centre. Jolly good fun.
Re: There are other issues
wow - I'd not heard of that method of shutting down an SRB before! From a shuttle crew point of view I'm not entirely sure that cutting the top off a lit SRB and thus presumably sending a fairly unconstrained flame up past your ears (and past the top of the main tank) is an immediately obvious improvement on the situation but I guess (as per JS19's comment) cutting the bottom off to reduce the pressure but keep the exhaust heading into the flame pit could help.
It still all makes me curious as to the general thought processes:
-So, we're going to attach you to this big firework to get you into space...
-How do you get it going?
-Big pyrotechnic thing up the middle of it set off with an explosive detonator...
-How do you stop it falling over?
-How do you undo them at the right time?
-We don't. They explode...
-Err, OK. What happens if you need to stop the big firework?
-Ah, that's easy - we've wrapped more explosive round the top and/or bottom of it to chop the ends off...
Not so much rocket science as officially approved pyromania!
Re: There are other issues
The BBC article on this (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-23241158) says that the upper stage is designed to be sent back into the atmosphere specifically to avoid adding to the space junk issue.
I also thought that another issue with SRBs and manned flight was the partial failure problem. i.e. that you have to be sure that none of them light or that all of them light. I think one of the nightmare scenarios for the shuttle was that only one SRB would light and the concern as to whether the pad would survive holding down an SRB for two minutes.
Re: Dream bigger
And for venus you will need something rather different to Curiosity. The atmospheric pressure (90 times earth), temperature (460C) and it's corrosive sulphuric acid rain mean that even the few sucessful landers had expected lifetimes measured in minutes - there were many more unsucessful landers...
Re: Prescient much?
kind of amazed that it still actually works! Assumed that most exchanges wouldn't recognise it anymore. Anyone else remember spending ages trying to dial numbers by just clicking the handset rest?
Re: Sean Bean
One does not simply walk into the Tardis
Re: It occurs to me...
Hmmm, it sounds like you've just described a business process. Those are patentable, aren't they?
Well, that's kind of what happened in the UK when the head of the Association of Chief Police Officers wrote to all the police forces to tell them to calm down on the whole harassing people taking photos thing. His motive wasn't that it was wrong or even illegal (in some cases) but that "the public" were actually starting to check what their rights really were ...
A strange mix of extraordinarily advanced things (e.g. MSL/curiosity), implemented on much less advanced hardware (for reliability/radiation resiliance/etc.) and carried aloft (or returned to the ground) by some very primitive techniques indeed (set fire to this bit, add more heat shield to this bit).
Reminds me of a description in a very early non-discworld Terry Pratchett book where there is a description of what a valve would look like if technology had advanced but the transistor had never been developed. Bit like modern cars too - still basically propelled by burning dinosaur and rolling along on rubber sausages ...
I think because her flight was as part of a private enterprise that sought some volunteers, performed some selection based on physical and academic qualifications and then paid the USSR for the launch and visit to Mir - so essentially she was a passenger. Whereas Tim Peake is a member of the ESA astronaut corps so it is his profession and he is expected to be able to carry out any astronaut-y activities including e.g. space walks.
But, yeah, there's probably a bit of official vs. unofficial, amateur vs. professional or private vs. public snobbishness going on too!
well, the common part of the genetic heritage might be quite a long way back: "Bah, humbug, who needs warm blood? Cold blood was good enough for me and your mother. These little furry things running around won't last. Although there do seem to be a few more of them than yesterday ..."
It wasn't the ID card itself that was the problem - it was the National Database it was going to be attached to. The purpose of that was to link all possible government databases and records into one place. Most of the countries being held up as examples of ID cards working fine and being supported by their citizens have specific laws in place to say the the government is not allowed to do that so the ID card only does what it says it does: proves you are who you say you are, that you are a citizen (or have right of residence, etc.) and, perhaps, where you live. Ours would also have allowed "appropriate officials and other authorised parties" access to a whole lot more personal information than that...
so let's see if we can't pass my fundraising goal...
I don't see this in the round up summary so, here goes:
Two strips of aluminium foil with a small notch in the middle at the edge of each. One end of each mounted on the truss, the other end of each on the plane. Foil strips should be slack so that they can tolerate reasonable wobble and movement of the plane on the way up. They should be clamped with the ends of the strips slightly off parallel so that as the strip pulls taught the initial tension passes through the edge with the notch. Then you should get a nice tear straight across each strip which shouldn't require much tension along the strip (i.e. holding back the plane) to achieve.
I'm not sure I can diagram this with ascii art though - hopefully the description is clear! I guess it's a bit like tearing a sheet of paper by putting a good sharp crease in it, starting the tear at one end of the crease then pulling from the corners that are on the edge where you put the tear.
Might well be some better materials than kitchen foil but I'm not sure what the materials science description of the relevant properties would be. Needs to be flexible, can be cut to take a good sharp notch and have a very low resistance to the notch propogation when perpendicular tension is applied.
ooooh - you don't want to say that in front of the SPB! They get a bit tetchy ...
Indeed - amazing!
But check out the colour of the top of the gas tank - that's not helium, it's something lighter ...
So, I like the simplicity but the two bits that would make me nervous are (a) you need to make a hole in your firewall for the peer-to-peer bit to work, and (b) it still does need central control via the supplier. If you really do want a setup that has no supplier involvement then you have to deal with (a) but if the supplier dissappears one day then (b) is still a problem. Well, I suppose you still have the files on each of the Transporters but you'll have lost at least some (if not all) of their interconnectedness. Although I guess they could let you remove that risk by selling the command and control software too so that you could host that yourself if you really wanted.
All Hail Telstar 1 !
How does the loan give MS "influence"?
As long as Dell keeps up with the payments, I don't see how MS get to exert influence over them. With an equity stake they would get actual powers to vote, appoint directors, etc. but I didn't think that was the case with loans.
Or, perhaps, when the loan is $2B you can't really compare it to a loan that you or I could get. Otherwise it would be like your mortgage company phoning you up and saying "We know you're keeping up fine with the payments but we'd still like you to change jobs. We think you should be a telephone sanitiser"
I'm sorry but I just can't read that without hearing it in a Austrian accent...
"It can't form complex machines ... but it can form form solid metal shapes"
"Knives and stabbing weapons"
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