* Posts by Jwdb

9 posts • joined 11 Jan 2012

Belgian F-16 pilot rescued from power line after emergency ejection

Jwdb
Alert

Re: Pilot now shorter and one chance left

Not a bad idea, but one button only is safer and more reliable: you don't want to be fumbling about trying to figure out which button is which or debating about how much time you've got left when you've really only got a split second. One button is also less complex than having a dual-mode ejection seat, so less likely to fail in an emergency.

Hell hath no fury like a radar engineer scorned

Jwdb

Re: 2.5MW

There's a series of aviation primary radars used for en-route tracking (so, long-distance, not just airport approach) that apparently have a rated peak power of > 2.5 MW. Think there's one on Belgium of this type although I can't recall what the power rating was. I do recall it being high, however.

Wikipedia page (in German): https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/SRE-M

It's not chicken feed: Million-dollar meal deal for livestock sabotaged by hackers... and, er, exchange rates

Jwdb
Devil

The remaining £93,540.99...

So, Ecobank gets a free £94k for being weasels with the exchange rate? Why weren't they required to return exactly what they received, considering they are supposed to be an innocent bystander for whom the money was not intended? Can't see how they have any right to keep that residual - cf. various past cases of individuals receiving money accidentally, spending it, and then being ordered by the courts to pay it back.

Pulses quicken at NASA as SpaceX gets closer to crewed launches and Russia readies the next Soyuz

Jwdb
Flame

Re: Elon & Drugs

@Alistair

Only if they smoke weed and the DEA decides to make an example of them.

It's not illegal to make laws saying weed's legal, but since it's a schedule I controlled substance it's still a federal crime to distribute/have/use/etc it (thus the shorthand "illegal"). That's why no weed business in the US is on the stock exchange or has a bank account, and why weed businesses are so happy that Sessions, who had it in for them, is gone.

Either way, here's to hoping Musk was smart enough to keep the workplace clean. I would *really* hate to see SpaceX go up in smoke over something this trivial.

Anti-peeping-tom drone law nixed in California

Jwdb

Re: You don't own the air above your ground

@ElReg!comments!Pierre

As far as actual ownership is concerned, if wikipedia and quora are to be believed then US landowners own rights to all minerals under their property barring an explicit notation in the deed. This apparently even includes the oil that flows into the rock under your property from under your neighbor's property due to the fact that you've just sucked your property dry. You are *not* allowed to dig down and then sideways under someone else's property without a lease, however.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oil_and_gas_law_in_the_United_States

This fits with what I've always heard as far as the US is concerned, in that US law on this differs greatly from European law.

Jwdb
Thumb Up

Us vs the lawyers

You know, he's got a point. Isn't American society already litigious enough, without adding another law that people can get into petty arguments about? Imagine flying at 355 ft, and then getting dragged into court because it turned out your GPS had a 6 ft vertical margin of error (remember, vertical accuracy is significantly worse than horizontal). I know my little GPS logger was regularly off by ten meters, if not more.

Yes, we want to prevent intrusions on privacy, but I agree we should try to do it without creating a new avenue for lawyers to get rich.

Steve Jobs' 'private Apple spaceship' seeks public love

Jwdb
Unhappy

Re: Why Bother

So we should aim for the lowest common denominator, for mediocrity? This is the reason US residential architecture (sprawl, more specifically) is derided as "cookie-cutter".

The US has some fantastic architects - use them!

Stray SMS leads to aborted landing

Jwdb
Boffin

Re: Interference

Nope, even with a dipole antenna 100 km is possible. The main limiting factor for GSM is the ground and other obstructions.

Here's a back-of-the-envelope calculation:

Handheld power output of 2 W, dipole antenna of 1.5 dBi

Tower sensitivity of -102 dBm (that's actually the handheld, but the tower should be better), and dipole antenna

Work that out in free space with Frii's equation and you have a margin of 100 dB, which is 100 km. If you assume the tower antenna is pointed downwards and you therefore have a gain of, say, -20 dB, you've still got 10 km range.

Clouds and rain have minimal effect at 900 MHz, and the plane's clearly not that good of a Faraday cage, judging by the signal I get at the gate.

GPS manages to go 20,000 km with a measly 500 W equivalent (taking the antenna into account, in other words), as long as you have line of sight.

NASA halts 'naut flogging Apollo 13 notebook

Jwdb
Stop

Not about the money?

It's pretty clear it's not about the IP, but maybe it's not about the money either? I don't see them turning around and selling those moonrocks they've reclaimed. They were probably fine with him holding on to it as long as it stayed in his possession (a relic together with the hero). What they might not want is for a market for this kind of thing to gather steam, with all of the relics ending up in the hands of private collectors. I only hear of them making an issue of it when someone tries to *sell* something?

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