Re: Newsites FTTP & BDUK
"only the planners decided that cable wasn't in keeping with the rural area the development was located in..."
This kind of decision should leave the planners personally and individually liable to legal action.
7339 posts • joined 8 Feb 2008
"only the planners decided that cable wasn't in keeping with the rural area the development was located in..."
This kind of decision should leave the planners personally and individually liable to legal action.
"There needs to be a mandated directive - zero tax payer payments to further funding of any copper based investment in BT."
This is more-or-less what was done in New Zealand to force the splitting of the incumbent into a lines company and a dialtone/connections company.
The problem isn't BT as such, the problem is that the commas market is dominated by a vertical monopoly with control of both infrastructure and retail with a vested interest in preventing any competition in the retail level.
ALL the arguments against splitting BT were advanced against splitting Telecom NZ (which isn't strange - TCNZ tried to sell the BT/Openreach model to NZ regulators as the way forward, to the stage of aping the same setup) and ALL those arguments were proven fallaciious (especially the pensions liability claims).
The real problem is Ofcom - as a technical regulator they're passable but as a competition and markets authority they're both decidedly lacking in teeth and arguably massively duplicating an existing regulator.
This was also proven in New Zealand when the Commerce regulator stepped in, documented the level of damage that TCNZ's monopoly was doing to NZ's GDP AND what BT was doing to the UK GDP (percentagewise, about the same - 3-5% - it adds up to hundreds of billions each year) and put its foot down, refusing to let TCNZ use the BT/Openreach sham in New Zealand.
"In a just world, Conley would be fired and Davis would be compensated for having been abused."
Refer to the last couple of verses of "O Superman" (From United States I-IV)
"This is at least the fourth time I have heard of folk be given tiny samples by Armstrong by folk you I'd hardly expect to lie and yet he was quite insistent that he never gave any away.."
I'm pretty sure that of he admitted to it, people like this "Agent" would have broken out the bamboo splinters to make Neil 'fess up about who he'd given them too.
The reality is that NASA freely gave away a lot of bits of technology and samples to retiring staff and major contributors in the 1960s as a way of non-monetary appreciation for the effort they'd put in and this policy change only came into effect in the late 1970s with a hell of a lot of retconning to say they'd never allowed it and all stuff given away in the past must have been stolen.
Coincidentally that policy reversal happened in the aftermath of the 'theft' of the 600lb safe full of moon rocks - where some versions of the story are that the interns were told the safe was surplus to requirements and they could take it away. It was the attempt to auction off the 'tossed out' moonrocks and ensuing publicity that led to the public change in position. I know of some 'interesting' pieces of Mercury/Gemini/Apollo history in various places across the world in the possession of families of ex-program members, but many more "interesting" pieces were simply surplussed out and sold off at govt auction by paper pushers who had zero idea of the historic value of the "junk" they were dumping.
"I've been telling people for years that Skeggie Clock Tower is really a rocket ship but no-one ever believed me."
Flash Gordon parked _his_ rocketship at EC3A 8EP, so I'm happy to believe Skeggie has one too.
"with a Yuuuuge lever."
Make sure it gives splinters and don't use any lubrication.
For added bonus pointed tamp it home.
"But the Conservatives are vulnerable to protest parties at times"
_ALL_ parties are vulnerable to swing and non-voters.
The mistake they make is to only court the swing voters (marginal seats) and treat non-voters as "If you don't vote, you don't exist" - all parties get lists of _who_ voted even if they don't know what they voted for and it's been made abundantly clear to me that regular voters get more door knockers. Most parties don't even bother trying to campaign to people who haven't voted.
A solid campaign based on getting those who haven't voted out to the polling booths would be a fundamental shock to the conservatives on all sides as they rely on electoral complacency.
Whilst this might sound like a pipe dream, it's exactly the tactic that Barack Obama used to mobilise the Democratic vote in the USA.
"Makes one think of turkeys voting for Christmas."
Now that the reality of how much brexit will fuck things over in favour of the tories is starting to dawn on people, a campaign based on "Fuck brexit and fuck the tories" might have traction.
If GenX and Millennials were to get out and vote, it would scare the bejesus out of the establishment and this time around they're starting to get pissed off enough to actually get politically engaged.
Right now there's no jurisdiction.
If EFF respond to say so, then Australian courts will take it that they accept jurisdiction and make things even worse.
Yes. Australian law really is that fucked up.
"A human can walk 10km in 2 hours."
Not in a pressure suit (s)he can't. Mars atmosphere is so thin it may as well be vacuum. Whilst it's thick enough to protect against micrometeroids, it's no good for radiation shielding when taken in conjunction with the lack of magnetosphere.
For an analogue to the loading of a pressure suit, put on a drysuit, inflate it slightly and try going for a walk. You'll quickly realise that the thing wants to have the arms and legs out straight and anything else takes significant effort. That's about best case scenario. Now realise you're going to have to carry all your life-support kit with you, or push it on a wheeled trolley. Oh and you're wearing thick gloves not only to protect you against the vacuum but also against the biting cold. Dexerity isn't something you have much of. You really don't want to put a hand outside the suit unprotected. You won't die but the odds are pretty good that you'll end up with lots of subdermal bleeding AND a bad case of frostbite (it's happened in NASA environmental chambers).
You might get 1km in 2 hours but unless you brought everything else along with you, you also have to walk back to base - which a robot doesn't need to do even if it takes 2 days to go that far - and bear in mind that the reason they're going so slowly is because they're using solar panels which are pretty feeble on earth for such things, let alone at Mars' distance, or they're using radiothermal decay generators which only output a little more power and have the disadvantage of a very limited lifespan compared to solar panels (which have generally kept going until the device they're on has mechanically broken down)
Humans in space is a nice romantic thing - and a necessary thing to protect the species in the long term against "rocks from the sky" as well as our own reckless ongoing experiment with the Earth's oxygen supply, but trying to justify putting people on mars over robots as an efficiency thing is a non-starter. About the only advantage of humans is that they're adaptable and expendable, but the reality is that they're fragile and costs of keeping them alive massively outweighs the convenience of that adaptability.
"You actually just made a very good argument for expanding manned space flight. The costs are similar, and are either going into keeping the robots or the humans alive. I prefer to focus on keeping humans alive."
The rate is about 100 robots per one human. Whilst the robots might be slow, they can collectively do far more than one human.
The bigger problem than all of this is the amount of money _NOT_ being spent. Hollywood spent more on a single movie about space than NASA's entire launch budget for that year. One of my worries about Elon making launches cheaper is that agencies may use this as an excuse to cut back budgets even further - Discounting routine stuff (comms, spy and navigation orbiters) launches are only a minor part (2-3%) of the total cost of a mission, but there are manglement who will see a 2/3 reduction in launch costs as an excuse for a 2/3 total reduction.
We're already in a situation where support grants are routinely paid for the bare salary of 1-2 people and NONE of their equipment or support costs - or where existing long-term projects which were chronically underfunded to start with are now at the point where their storage systems are wearing out and there's no money to pay to keep 5-800TB in a data safe as backup tapes (manglement goes "we need that cupboard space for projects being paid for, dump those tapes") let alone as an online, world-accessable resource.
"Humans can also do things like fixing the Hubble telescope (that robots can't)"
That's _only_ because things like Hubble weren't designed to be repaired by robots in the first place. It had "interchangeable modules" which were partly ok, but those interchangable modules turned out to have a bunch of fiddly anciliary connectors that could only be accessed and undone by a human(*)(**)
(*) Actually a decent manipulator would have been much better. Human hands are reasonably dextrous but once you're inside a spacesuit and wearing gloves you might as well be trying to do things wielding 2 pairs of 3-foot-long chopsticks.
(**) Not to mention humans working under time pressure, in those claustropobic suits have a tendency to forget to secure things like loose bolts or micrometeorite shields, whilst a robot being driven remotely means that there's a team overseeing everything.
It's quite possible that a suitable robotic manipulator chassis would work better on ISS than humans but a lot of the reason for even having spacewalks is to see how well humans can do things when outside (answer: "not very")
"radiation shielding is far more important than drive technology at this point."
Water is one of the best radiation shields that exists - and there happens to be a lot of it in the asteroid belt, not at the bottom of a gravity well.
One of the more "far-fetched" ideas is to hollow out a comet and use that as your interplanetary ferry. What's drilled out can also be your reaction mass.
"Radiation shielding is far more important than drive technology at this point."
Water is one of the best radiation shields there is. One of the "far fetched" but more practical ideas is to hollow out a comet and use that as your ferry. What you take out of the middle can also be your reaction mass.
"I reckon it's more feasible than a space elevator."
Space elevators/Fountains/Lofstrom loops, etc are for worlds with atmospheres.
Railguns are the most effective system for an airless world.
Acceleration is only an issue for biologicals, but time to destination is only an issue for (live) biologicals too.
The problem with having one running long distances (over the horizon) is the energy expended in keeping the object being accelerated _on_ the rail in the face of rapidly increasing "centripetal" forces (it's going to go in a straight line) and Heinlein compensated for that in his "Moon" universe by not trying - the railgun tracks were straight and as such got higher from the ground the further from the launch point they got.
"Trump will need the SLS to build hotels in space"
Is anyone else hoping that an infestation of Vermicious Knids shows up if he does?
"A human could probably do more in a few days, even on foot."
Not carrying their own air they can't.
The lunar rover didn't go very far either - mainly because if it broke down they had to make sure the passengers could walk back to the lander without dying on the way.
"The acceleration needed on a lunar railgun to fire a ship to Mars to get there in under a year would squish the crew into a thin film of raspberry jam."
When you get to these kinds of accelerations, the best thing to do is be in a tank of water.
"Stellar metallicity has an effect on stellar evolution."
Given that most of these supermassive babies seem to have formed in the first couple of billion years of the universe's eveolution it's unlikely there would be much metal in the gas clouds that they formed from.
Some trace amounts of lithium perhaps, but that's about all.
"A paleontologist, who has never seen a living dinosaur"
Apart from the ones with feathers :-)
"surely in an almost infinite universe"
1: It's not infinite (the multiverse might be but our universe isn't)
2: These events are observed happening billions of lightyears away, therefore billions of years ago.
3: The universe was a lot smaller then, therefore more dense.
It looks like a lot of the supermassive blackhole formation which occurred happened in the early stages of the universe due to more gas around to form stars and it being less disturbed by starlight pressure, etc. (Oversimplifying massively)
"Look, I'll get you the book - you should really read it; you'll see they're right, it's all explained in there...!"
I've been tempted on multiple occasions to sort myself out a nice hand-made leatherbound tome which contains "XYZ is bullshit" statements, one per page.
'I've got a book too - see?'
"Except for the language, which is French pronounced badly."
More likely a creole developed from a pidgin, which in turn developed from a creole that developed from a pidgin.
Linguists try to talk about purity, but every time there's an invasion, languages blend into a simplistic form which the descendants then recomplexify.
Automation will target "high value" jobs, not low value ones.
Lawyers, bankers, etc are _more_ at risk than ditch diggers, because the potential savings are higher and because the lion's share of mechanising/automating unskilled work has already been done.
It used to be that "the rich get richer and the poor get poorer" but at the same time the number of rich people was steadily increasing. It's about to become "the rich become considerably fewer and the middle classes cease to exist"
Remaining manual labour jobs are likely to be the last to be automated, simply because they're the most expensive to automate compared to the return on investment. Expect to see a massive rise in low paid services jobs making the existing transition to a services economy look small.
The interesting question becomes what happens when AI has an IQ of 10,000 vs a human with 100. Will it grumble about having a brain the size of a planet and only being allowed to open doors (source: obvious) or will it start regarding us as....."pets" (Source: Asimov's Univac short stories)
"Also, the writers of this report should consult with those that produced the AEMO report on the SA blackout."
As I recall the problem wasn't that the wind wasn't blowing, but that the owners of the natural gas plant which could have easily taken up the slack decided it wasn't worthwhile firing it up because the last few times they did so the wind started blowing before the plant startup costs were paid for.
"Cruise speed of the 707 was 977km/h. Cruise speed of the 787 is, well, erm, 903 km/h."
Range of the 707 was about 5000km
Range of the 787 is 10-12,000km
Going a little slower but not having to land and refuel leads to faster overall trips.
"Drag eats your fuel, kinetic energy is no concern."
The same applies to cars and haulage vehicles too.
Air is a fluid and a surprisingly dense one when you try moving anything through it at speed.
"Airbus has in the past taken the approach that they strongly *discourage* high-density seating, and the A380-flying airlines all have looked at the cabin ergonomics and agreed with that approach"
There's an added incentive on A380s - the more people up top, the less space in the belly for revenue cargo. It's better to run lower density and sell vast empty spaces for silly money because then you can put more cargo mass downstairs where it makes more money than the passengers it's not carrying.
"And that's before one considers that most airlines run the 787 with 9 seats per row, not 8."
As others have said, 9 rows (3-3-3) is a standard config.
What's worrying is that some are running 3-4-3 at the back. You'd better be skinny or be prepared to hold your breath the entire flight.
"On trips under 4 hours"
It's generally easier to take the train.
What? You don't have High Speed Rail? How quaint!
"Flying wings are not so practical for passenger jets."
Apart from the lack of windows: From a comfort and space point of view they'd be pretty good.
The big problem with all flying wing designs is evacuation capabilities.
The A380's ~880 passenger loading is significantly smaller than its all-economy seating capabilities because of this. (But on the other side, carrying fewer people than that allows more revenue cargo in the belly which is also important for airlines)
Cyber bullying is across the board. I'm on the periphery and have seen at least as many cases of adults being bullied as of teens.
The interesting thing is that you'd think that this is due to the anonymity afforded by the Internet but in a good chunk of the cases the perpetrator isn't hiding at all. The Internet is just making it easier to be an antisocial arsehole without setting foot out the door.
"But my housemate wanted to be able to control the central heating from her smartphone"
Fritzbox smarthome - amongst other options.
No cloud servers required.
> why "pelican"?
PEdestrian LIght-CONtrolled crossing - a traffic light away from any intersection, which only exists to stop traffic and let pedestrians cross.
Toucan - is a pelican with an adjacent cycle lane - "Two can cross"
There are a bunch of other silly bird-related names.
They seemed like a good idea at the time but statistics show that there are more, and more serious injuries at these crossings than at the Zebra crossings they replaced, so they're strongly discouraged by the transport department and it's trying to encourage their removal too.
(This is mostly because drivers speed up when they see long-duration greens and try to barge through on orange even if the crossing isn't clear - unlike the USA, cars never have right of way over pedestrians (there's no such thing as jaywalking in most of the world, That was something that the carmakers managed to get the USA government to pass as part of car culture))
Because of the safety problems, London's trying to remove as many as possible - along with "Safety fencing" - which isn't at all safe for anyone if it's hit by a vehicle, and parking restrictions (yellow lines).
The statistical perverse effect of virtually all (expensive) roadside furniture intended to "improve safety" is to make the roads more hostile to pedestrians by speeding up drivers and giving them "tunnel vision" due to a perceived increased demarcation between road and footpath that doesn't actually exist. Even painting narrower road lanes or centrelines speeds up traffic. Local authorities generally refuse to admit they got it wrong, so instead of undoing a bad decision, they then add even more stuff to try and correct the increased danger, usually with even more negative results - like the old lady who swallowed a fly.
If you're interested in this level of geekery it's worth reading the "Safer London 2020" road documents.
"B. rules don't apply to cyclists."
1: Yes they do - and cops will ticket for breaching them.
2: If you're on a cycle and you physically interact with a car/motorcycle/pedestrian/truck it doesn't matter who's in the right, you're going to get hurt.
In a laned traffic light controlled intersection where traffic in the turning lane is stationary, you can expect traffic in the straight through lanes to be travelling the speed limit - no matter which country you're in.
If you suddenly decided to slow down to 20mph in such a case in London you'd have a bunch of pissed-off drivers on their horns at you.
There's no such thing as "Overtaking on the inside" when the passed traffic is stationary.
The driver of the turning car proceeded to move when the way was not _visibly clear_ (obstructed visibility) and as such she's 100% at fault. This kind of crash is fairly regular with squishies in control and the short answer is that if you put yourself in the path of a vehicle which has right of way, then you're at fault, no matter what colour the lights might be. Never assume they're going to stop until they actually have.
"That's only because they didn't use the older models of the Ford Sierra and BWM 323"
Dunno about the BMW, but the Sierra used Cortina mechanicals and that pointy nose was all plastic which mashed flat and sprayed shit all over the road when hit.
"The Uber car could then "drive up" the bonnet like a ramp"
I had an office by an intersection that saw its fair share of this kind of crash (mostly caused by straight-through vehicles running reds and hitting turning vehicles on arrows).
This kind of scenario _never_ happened (ie: in no case did the oncoming car ride up over the nose of the turning one, or vice versa), but in one case the driver of the turning vehicle saw the crash coming and tried to avoid it. Instead of braking hard she hit the gas and ended up accelerating hard into the side of the straight-through vehicle, which ended up on its roof about 20 yards further on.
One of the things I learned from working there was that crash witnesses are highly unreliable. Most aren't paying attention and only start properly looking _after_ the noise happens, then assume the rest. Statements given to the police seldom tallied and CCTV footage (which is why the police would be in my office) usually showed something completely different to their claims.
" they could have bought a single piece SRB from Rocketdyne* "
Rocketdyne did actually build a test article. I think it's still sticking out of the ground because it wasn't worth pulling it out of the test stand after their contract was cancelled.
"The bit that returned to Earth was a small part of the total."
Bits (boosters and orbiter)
And those bits were essentially stripped down to bare metal each time and built from scratch again with mostly new parts.
It was reusable only in name.
"Next comes third reuse, then fourth"
Not with this one. It's staying at the cape as an exhibit.
There have been a couple of landing on the barge videos. The problem has been keeping the live uplink aimed at the right satellite as the rocket comes in (rockets are LOUD - enough to actually shake the snot out of stuff).
The best solution would probably be a floating fibreoptic cable to another RO-boat a few hundred yards away carrying the uplink. You'd get the advantage of a wider angle landing view too.
Actual real latencies have hardly changed in the last 15 years.
This has become a major bottleneck and predictive fetching isn't that effective.
On the US side:
1: Isn't American.
2: Didn't grease the right palms
3: Setup his own music label and started poaching successful artists.
on the NZ side:
1: Is "foreign"
2: has a criminal record.
3: Is rich, flamboyant and annoying (a serious faux pas in NZ).
4: Believed that NZ was a safe haven, where he could pay politicians to keep out of trouble instead of a banana republic where his money would be accepted but he'd happily be thrown under a bus anyway.
The NZ government was seduced by the thought of seizing all his assets and cash(*)(**) thereby preventing him from mounting a competent legal defence and railroading him out of the country.
(*) Why put up with only getting eggs when you can have the golden goose instead?
(**)Seizure is the standard tactic in NZ - it forces people to rely on court-appointed defence lawyers who generally aren't much good and are under a lot of pressure not to mount a decent defence (it can be "career-limiting" to do so in NZ high profile cases with many such lawyers ending up working outside the country as they can no longer get employment in NZ). Dotcom is one of very few people who've been able to get assets released to cover his defence costs.
There have been a bunch of major miscarriages of justice in New Zealand over the years - to the point where they dumped the Privy Council as the highest court because it kept bringing down decisions excoriating NZ courts and policing. Things aren't helped by juries having the mentality "He's been charged therefore he's got to be guilty" and convicting people despite outrageously flimsy evidence(***) (Look up "noble cause corruption" - NZ policing has more than its fair share of Gene Hunts)
(***) In one murder case against someone who was a customer of mine the prosecution case hinged on an accusation that the guy drove a 180 mile round trip in peak traffic and killed his wife and kid all in less than 2 hours. When the police attempted to replicate the drive to prove their case they triggered more than a dozen 111 (999/911) calls from concerned motorists and still only managed to do it in 3 hours - this was presented as evidence in court and should have resulted in the collapse of the case. He was still found guilty and the Privy Council ripped the courts a new one when it got to them.
"The correct answer is that now I'm no longer employed by you, the consultancy rate is (5-10 x previous rate) and you would be happy to help, but given the circumstances, the terms are payment in advance."
It's actually better to decline.
If you start demanding high rates they may sic lawyers on the case claiming blackmail.
I've seen it happen. Wait for them to make the monetary offer and give them time to worry you'll refuse.
Pull the drive, drop in a new one, reimage.
the old drive is your forensics and being unplugged makes it unmodifiable.
Backups, and more fucking backups.
And NOT online backups. They're far too susceptable to this kind of attack.
" It is not illegal to pass on the inside lane, just take care."
Beware though: If you pass on the left and the passee moves left on you, you're likely to find yourself facing careless driving charges - even if they're doing 35mph in the right lane and listening to Charlie and the Cockroaches at full volume, so not hearing the horns behind them.
Last trip I took up the M1, I counted 80 instances of laneblocking between the M25 and M6. It's pretty clear that the law change isn't helping much. I also saw a large number of potentially dangerous passing moves to get past the idiots causing the slowdowns so cracking down on the former has potential to cause significant reduction in the latter. (The problem at the moment is that only patrolling police can issue a ticket, only on the spot and only if they witness it occurring for some time beforehand.)
"The bit that the stats glosses over is that "95% of crashes involve human error" - please remind me again who wrote the software for the automated death machines ?"
1: Humans tend to make a serious driving error every few minutes.
2: Robots tend not to fixate on the rear of the girl on the footpath and miss the brakelights in front of them, etc.
3: Humans need individual training - and the results of that training are wildly variable
4: When a change needs to be rolled out, all those humans need individual retraining.
Road crashes tend to involve at least 2 glaringly serious errors combined.
Even the vastly imperfect Tesla autopilot has achieved a 40% reduction in crash rates over what would be statistically expected from 100% human piloted cars - and that's according to the NHTA, which investigated the things after Joshua Brown's death(*) in the expectation of finding they were dangerous/should be banned.
(*) There are still far too many unanswered questions about that crash, including "Where's Joshua's dashcam? He never travelled without it"
"No matter how complex the electronics, a person signalling right and turning left, or going straight on, will always mess it up!"
They mess it up for the other meatsacks too - and apart from robots having faster reaction times than squishies, that's the kind of thing that onboard video will capture and make abundantly clear who's at fault.
Up to the advent of ubiquitous dashcams, this kind of dangerous driver usually got away with it when they crashed by blaming the other car. With the advent of robodrivers, it may be possible for repeat offenders to start receiving "invitations" to resit their driving tests.
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