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James Cameron and Eric Schmidt's SOI Grieve Loss of Nereus ROV

samzenpus posted about 4 months ago | from the so-long-farewell dept.

Science 72

theodp (442580) writes "Wealthy guys love extreme submarines, observed Billionaire in 2012. And the Washington Post reported that deep sea exploration is getting to be a rich man's game in 2013. The NY Times also covered the privatization of American science earlier this year. So, it's not too surprising to see the [Google Chair Eric] Schmidt Ocean Institute (SOI) post filmmaker James Cameron's eulogy-of-sorts for the loss of the Nereus ROV, the hybrid remotely operated vehicle that's believed to have imploded under 16,000 PSI of pressure at a depth of 9,990 meters as it explored the Kermadec Trench. 'I feel like I've lost a friend,' wrote Cameron. 'I always dreamed of making a joint dive with Nereus and [Cameron's] Deepsea Challenger at hadal depth.' Also feeling Cameron's pain is SOI, which used the Nereus to explore the Mid-Cayman Rise in 2013 and had plans to use the $6 million HROV again to explore the Mariana Trench in two missions later this year. SOI is currently working with the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution to build the world's most advanced deep-diving robotic vehicle for use on SOI's ship R/V Falkor, which Wendy Schmidt indicated provides ship time that enables researchers to tap into available funding."

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First implosion! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47035509)

ER, I mean post.

WOW (1)

the_Bionic_lemming (446569) | about 4 months ago | (#47035523)

6.21 miles deep, that's impressive.

Re:WOW (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47036071)

yes, 32,775.5 feet, 6.207 miles.

Re:WOW (1)

lennier1 (264730) | about 4 months ago | (#47036223)

Look at what Jim Cameron's brother Mike does for a living. Extreme stuff like that is in the family's blood.

Re:WOW (3, Funny)

Ol Biscuitbarrel (1859702) | about 4 months ago | (#47036239)

"Mike Cameron, brother to James, is a super-smart aerospace engineer. He came up with a way to film at 12,600 feet underwater, and JPL wants to use the technology to explore one of the moons of Jupiter."

Oh great, haven't they read the memo about attempting no landings there? Now those aliens are going to get all monolith on our asses.

Re:WOW (1)

RivenAleem (1590553) | about 4 months ago | (#47038251)

Yes, it was so impressed, it imploded!

Maybe (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47035537)

you can show those "research" videos on twitch later? Just don't show anything that can hurt the population. Like the truth or something...

Re:Maybe (0)

Opportunist (166417) | about 4 months ago | (#47035647)

Don't worry, we're still at war, the first victim of which has always been truth. So truth has been dead and buried for years.

Meanwhile... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47035547)

back up on land, people in other parts of the world are starving...

Re:Meanwhile... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47035573)

Ask Dr. Darwin about that, not James Cameron.

Re:Meanwhile... (1, Informative)

phantomfive (622387) | about 4 months ago | (#47035579)

back up on land, people in other parts of the world are starving...

And you haven't donated any of your money to help them, have you?

Re:Meanwhile... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47035825)

I would, but then I would be the one starving. Because you see, I need my money to buy food so I can eat.

Re:Meanwhile... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47035975)

I would, but then I would be the one starving. Because you see, I need my money to buy food so I can eat.

If you have so little discretionary income then perhaps you should be spending your time earning money rather than wasting your time posting on Slashdot.

Re:Meanwhile... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47035993)

I'm posting on Slashdot while I wait for rejection letters from employers. It's an employers' market these days, there's no income to be earned, workers can fuck off and starve.

Re:Meanwhile... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47039001)

Nah, you're just worthless.

Re:Meanwhile... (0)

phantomfive (622387) | about 4 months ago | (#47036069)

A dollar gives 9 meals [feedingamerica.org] . If you can't afford a dollar, go stand on a street corner and beg for a few hours. Then you'll be able to afford it and more.

Re:Meanwhile... (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about 4 months ago | (#47036091)

A few hours? Used to make more than minimum wage (in canada[sigh, higher than US if you're really clueless]) in 15 minutes or under over 20 years ago!

Re:Meanwhile... (0)

phantomfive (622387) | about 4 months ago | (#47036283)

Hey, you're a high quality beggar!

Re:Meanwhile... (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about 4 months ago | (#47037421)

No, I wasn't even very good at it.

It's really sad that in our society a begger can make more in an hour than a trained chef serving you a $40 steak.

Re: Meanwhile... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47036879)

$1 to Sergei has significantly less value than $1 to most of us.

So what? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47035613)

How many miles can THEY go under the sea.

Besides, they are generally starving because leaders of their land are on a power trip. Not playing with subs is going to help them not at all; sending more aid just means another gold plated limo for the king.

I'd rather have the submersible exist, thanks.

Re:Meanwhile... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47035869)

ever notice the majority of starving people are some of the oldest cultivated societies?

so whats their fucking excuse?

Re:Meanwhile... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47035945)

The Americans keep fucking up their countries. That's their fucking excuse.

Allegorically, reference how the Cardassians thoroughly fucked up Bajor, an ancient and formerly prosperous society.

Is this a special posting? (4, Interesting)

QuietLagoon (813062) | about 4 months ago | (#47035591)

Why does this posting reek of a PR person's assignment? Has /. sunk that low?

Re:Is this a special posting? (4, Informative)

cultiv8 (1660093) | about 4 months ago | (#47035631)

A big chunk of us are hanging out over at SoylentNews [soylentnews.org] .

Re:Is this a special posting? (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about 4 months ago | (#47036095)

Unfortunately, for the past little while, the stories haven't!

So hard to admit slashdot is dead.

Re:Is this a special posting? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47036115)

Shush! There has been enough news on Slashdot about SoylentNews. Do we really want the sort of people who still can't find it? Let them stay in Slashdot. Might buy us maybe a year or so of higher signal to noise ratio.

Re:Is this a special posting? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47036307)

I wish you faggots would go there and just stay there instead of coming back to spam links every now and then.

Re:Is this a special posting? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47037405)

It seems building a system that provides interesting and relatively neutral stories on a wide variety of topics to stimulate insightful commentary is relatively difficult in practise, despite its apparent simplicity. SoylentNews seems to load the summaries (two on the front page are bashing microsoft and apple with antagonistic overviews of the stories) and that's not going to lead to a conversation better than the type you'd find at your annual political party's "I hate [opposing political party]" conference.

You might despise the companies involved in a topic, but don't take tips from the media; report on it in a neutral manner, where possible, and allow the discussion to arise from facts.

Re:Is this a special posting? (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 4 months ago | (#47035645)

Erh... if this is supposed to be an ad, it backfires badly. Just take a look around at the comments...

Re:Is this a special posting? (1)

allcoolnameswheretak (1102727) | about 4 months ago | (#47036361)

James Cameron doesn't do what James Cameron does for James Cameron. James Cameron does what James Cameron does, because James Cameron IS James Cameron.

Re:Is this a special posting? (1)

RivenAleem (1590553) | about 4 months ago | (#47038265)

It has sunk low enough to cave under the pressure to publish slashvertisements.

Rich Republicans... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47035597)

and their toys. Think of how many meals for the homeless than money that he literally threw into the ocean could pay for. His kind is disgusting. He is just doing this so he can brag to his friends about how he is fucking over the world with his waste. In other words, the typical Republican.

Re:Rich Republicans... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47035637)

"Mr Schmidt played in a key role in the re-election of President Barack Obama last month, helping to oversee Google's $700,000 donation to his campaign."

Link [telegraph.co.uk]

Re:Rich Republicans... (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 4 months ago | (#47035641)

Relax. Either he discovers something for science or he eventually removes himself from the gene pool.

It's just so win-win...

Re:Rich Republicans... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47035673)

and their toys. Think of how many meals for the homeless than money that he literally threw into the ocean could pay for. His kind is disgusting. He is just doing this so he can brag to his friends about how he is fucking over the world with his waste. In other words, the typical Republican.

Yep...James Cameron is your typical republican: vegan athiest who believes in climate change, and has donated to both republicans and democrats.

Or maybe you meant Eric Schmidt, in which case I'd laugh even harder because you'd be so wrong:
http://www.redstate.com/2013/0... [redstate.com]

Re:Rich Republicans... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47035857)

vegan athiest

The owner of Whole Foods is too, but he still wants his employees to not be allowed to have healthcare. He has fought for years to prevent them from being able to see a doctor or go to the hospital. That is their way. They hate people that have to work a job for a living. They want our kind to die.

Re: Rich Republicans... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47053725)

I see you've doubled-down on the Republican hate even though your chosen examples of abhorrent rich people were shown not to be Republican. Continue dreaming that the rich Democrats care about working people beyond simply using them to obtain power.

Re:Rich Republicans... (-1, Troll)

Osgeld (1900440) | about 4 months ago | (#47035881)

you can throw money and food at the homeless all you want, it wont change the fact that they are drug addict lazy ass loosers who are perfectly happy with their position in society, and therefore will never change

Re:Rich Republicans... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47036005)

> loosers

Why do you Republicans lie like that. Calling them not tight is fucking ridiculous. You people are so hateful. Why are you calling them not tight? Backup your claim asshole.

Re:Rich Republicans... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47036019)

drug addict lazy ass loosers

What the fuck! You Republicans don't fucking know how to spell words that the rest of us learned in second grade. You inbred racist rednecks should just fucking stop posting on the Internet. Your kind has ruined the Internet. Before you people took over /. and ruined this site with your Republican-style web design, this was a nice site. Now you losers that don't even know how to spell loser have ruined it.

Re:Rich Republicans... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47038177)

So "change" is important? The rich are perfectly happy with how people are treated in society so they will never change either.

Re:Rich Republicans... (2)

Travis Mansbridge (830557) | about 4 months ago | (#47035949)

Allow me to refer you to this infographic. [gcg.io]

Re:Rich Republicans... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47036027)

Considering all of the Republicans are racists that hate the poor, how can you claim that? You know better. Of course you do, but your kind is incapable of telling the truth so you spout nonsense that you know is a lie. That is your way. That is the way of your kind.

Re:Rich Republicans... (1)

Travis Mansbridge (830557) | about 4 months ago | (#47036041)

Did you just claim that "All republicans stereotype?" It should be clear that I align myself with neither party, as their views increasingly diverge from that of the average American.

Your privacy dollars at work. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47035603)

Pop!

Should have been "Schmidt Ocean Laboratory" (3, Funny)

hey! (33014) | about 4 months ago | (#47035623)

Then the initials would have been "S.O.L."

Re:Should have been "Schmidt Ocean Laboratory" (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | about 4 months ago | (#47036185)

One rule of thumb I remember from way back... an institute founded by an individual and named after himself usually means it mainly generates pseudoscience.

Also, was anyone else disappointed that Mr. Cameron wasn't on that sub when it imploded?

Re:Should have been "Schmidt Ocean Laboratory" (1)

Intrepid imaginaut (1970940) | about 4 months ago | (#47038569)

Also, was anyone else disappointed that Mr. Cameron wasn't on that sub when it imploded?

What grievous offence has he committed upon your person that you'd wish him a horrendous death and his body likely never recovered? I quite liked Aliens myself.

N.M.A (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47035635)

Needs More Acronyms!

They will build a better one (2)

NixieBunny (859050) | about 4 months ago | (#47035693)

Underwater robotics is all about advancing the state of the art. A machine that lived six years was reaching obsolescence. I'm sure that the boys in the back room will have fun building its successor. (I have helped to build a few underwater robots for competitions, and it's always a joy to start work on the next one.)

Unless you want to actually use one (2)

dutchwhizzman (817898) | about 4 months ago | (#47035907)

Sure, for developers it's fun and exciting to build a new vessel with the latest and greatest technology. For a scientist, it's great to have access to a vessel at all. Maybe it won't have stuff developed in the last 8 years or so, but even being able to up to 8km down safely and having a plethora of sensors and fishing equipment available is more than most deep see researchers will get access to in the next five years, probably more. Obsolescence? Not by far, people would be queueing up to use it for the next decade at least.

Re:They will build a better one (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | about 4 months ago | (#47036407)

Underwater robotics is all about advancing the state of the art. A machine that lived six years was reaching obsolescence.

In the eyes of folks who build underwater robots, that may be true. For folks who use underwater robots to accomplish a task, it's all about accomplishing that task. State of the art, obsolescent, obsolete, they simply don't care so long as it works and accomplishes what they ask of it.
 

I'm sure that the boys in the back room will have fun building its successor.

I'm sure the boys in the back room will have fun. The men who pay the bills, and the men who planned on using the existing one next week (month, year, however long it takes to replace the lost one) won't be having nearly as much fun.

"Obsolete" != useless (2)

TapeCutter (624760) | about 4 months ago | (#47036505)

Underwater robotics is all about advancing the state of the art.

That may be true but the primary aim here is marine research, better robotics is a secondary consideration and besides we already know a 10 km high water column can turn a sub into a cigarette box in the blink of an eye, and it only takes a microscopic imperfection in the hull to trigger such an event.

When we are talking about very expensive research tools "Obsolete" does not mean useless, we are talking about a sub that can (almost) reach 10km down. I can only think of two other subs that have reached that depth and resurfaced in one piece on their maiden voyage. For example, the Woods hole institute has another sub called Alvin that can reach 4.5 km and has been in use since 1965, to date it has transported over 8000 researchers into the abyss, it has told us more about "what's down there" than all the others combined. If anyone wants to know what it found and what it's like diving to that extreme depth, there's an interesting book [amazon.com] written by Alvin's only female pilot, well worth a read. I highly recommend all slashdotter's buy a copy for their (12 and up) grand_daughter(s), daughter(s), niece(s), ect.

People should learn history (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47035707)

“For better or worse,” said Steven A. Edwards, a policy analyst at the American Association for the Advancement of Science, “the practice of science in the 21st century is becoming shaped less by national priorities or by peer-review groups and more by the particular preferences of individuals with huge amounts of money.”

Coz, like, science has never relied on rich benefactors before. Hint: Before government-funded science it was rich benefactors that provided residence, food and money for artisans and scientists.

Re:People should learn history (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | about 4 months ago | (#47036973)

Some one give the AC a mod point for the headline.

History is is the fastest way to understanding Science (with a capital 'S') and one of the best "executive summaries" I've read (and watched) is The ascent of man [youtube.com] .

Most of the pre-1900 polymaths that gave us the enlightenment were either nobility or one social step down from it. The simple fact of the matter is that they were the only people who could afford the "leisure time" to purse their intellectual curiosity. It was not unusual for these people to pay someone like Galileo (the orphaned son of a prostitute) to do the actual grunt work required to satisfy their curiosity. However Galileo was more of an exception than a rule, the vast majority of commoners could not even read and write until public education was introduced in the mid-1800's.

Edison gets a lot of flack on /. from elephant huggers and Telsa fans, but the fact remains that Menlo Park was the world's first modern laboratory. Modern research is almost without exception, based on Edison's model - ie: find an interesting observation in nature such as, electricity can make a filament glow red, then through trial and error work towards a practical goal such as, the light bulb (which is why a picture of a light bulb is synonymous with "an idea")

Contrast Edison's approach to that of Newton. The story is that when his friend Mr Haley told him about his idea of a recurring comet and asked for advice on how to work out the orbital period from observations, Newton said he had written down some "mathematical principles" that may help and started looking through his (extensive) papers for "something I wrote a while ago". He failed to find it but assured his friend he would try and recreate the document. Two years later he gave his friend a copy of his "Principa" - Arguably the most useful scientific document ever written, it's often credited as the birth certificate of the enlightenment and the point in history where science threw away it's religious crutches to stand or fall on it's own philosophical foundations.

Disclaimer: I was educated in 1960's Oz, all I remember 40yrs later is the political message I was supposed to learn - "this country was built on the sheep's back". it's a shame because Australia actually has the world's oldest culture, a culture that has managed a continent as an "estate" for at least 40,000 years under "The law" (which like the old testament wraps everyday practicalities within religious stories), they invented maps, invented grindstones, carved a massive "cathedral" from sandstone that is 20,000 years older than stone henge and the artwork that's left in the half that is still standing is maintained by the ancestors who are alive today (pics or it didn't happen are somewhere in here [sbs.com.au] ). I still consider myself ignorant about history, not from lack of interest but because of the sheer scale of the subject. The best way I've found to absorb some of the more interesting bits is by reading biographies of historical figures that intrigue me for whatever reason.

Re:People should learn history (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | about 4 months ago | (#47038225)

âoeFor better or worse,â said Steven A. Edwards, a policy analyst at the American Association for the Advancement of Science, âoethe practice of science in the 21st century is becoming shaped less by national priorities or by peer-review groups and more by the particular preferences of individuals with huge amounts of money.â

Coz, like, science has never relied on rich benefactors before. Hint: Before government-funded science it was rich benefactors that provided residence, food and money for artisans and scientists.

Really, what is the government but a very rich benefactor? In the same vein, shaping science to "national priorities" isn't so different from shaping it to "private priorities". Fame, pork, and profit... or fame and profit, the difference in motivations and goals seems miniscule from where I sit. (Keeping in mind that profit to the government isn't necessarily cash. It could be a better way to preserve food so your armies don't have to forage, or smaller nuclear weapons.) Even with the government in the driver's seat and paying the bills, not everyone got funded. Don't bring up basic science, both private and government benefactors pay for what supports their goals - and that's as true for Bell Labs as it is for Fermilab.

a waste (1)

cj51 (921458) | about 4 months ago | (#47035747)

it is a waste of good equipment since MH370 was probably landed at Diego Garcia

Re:a waste (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47035837)

How do you figure? The Nereus ROV was north-east of New Zealand doing stuff that was not at all MH370-related.

Oh Boo Hoo (2)

VonSkippy (892467) | about 4 months ago | (#47035775)

6 million to a billionaire is like me losing a $50 Toy RC Helicopter. Only I don't whine about it as much, or milk it for all the PR I can get.

Re:Oh Boo Hoo (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about 4 months ago | (#47036103)

of course, that's only because when you do it, not even your mother cares!

who gives a shit? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47035797)

Not me. I'm totally constipated.

confusing headline (1)

ArhcAngel (247594) | about 4 months ago | (#47035891)

I'm glad the summary defined SOI as I wasn't sure how Eric Schmidt was related to Silicon On Insulator [wikipedia.org] technology other than the chips Google's servers run on employ the tech.

Re: confusing headline (1)

jsh1972 (1095519) | about 4 months ago | (#47036045)

Fourth sentence in TFS clearly explains it. "So, it's not too surprising to see the [Google Chair Eric] Schmidt Ocean Institute (SOI) postÂ...."

Re: confusing headline (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about 4 months ago | (#47036111)

Isn't it great when you immortalize your stupidity(lack of reading comprehension) on the internet?

Gotta keep it up (1)

Katatsumuri (1137173) | about 4 months ago | (#47036715)

Wealthy guys love extreme submarines

...because jets are so 20th century, no-one will take you seriously.

Isn't this small change for billionaires? (2)

fantomas (94850) | about 4 months ago | (#47036745)

Isn't $6 million small change for Schmidt and Cameron? couldn't they just check out the loose change down the back of the armchair/ in their car's ashtray and pay for a new (and better one)? I am sure several US universities would be more than happy to have one of these folks offer to buy a new submarine for them on the agreement that said donor gets a certain amount of access to it.

Surely this is small change for these folks (and they are canny enough to work out how to make money out of the donation, e.g. by making a film about it).

Re:Isn't this small change for billionaires? (2)

zippthorne (748122) | about 4 months ago | (#47037101)

I think he has worked out a way to make money on it. Step one is to drum up interest by talking about the one that was lost....

Re:Isn't this small change for billionaires? (1)

RivenAleem (1590553) | about 4 months ago | (#47038285)

More importantly, they learned valuable information on what will cause a ROV to finally implode. Similar to Edison being quoted as finding out 1,000 ways not to make a lightbulb.

Re:Isn't this small change for billionaires? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47040867)

Isn't $6 million small change for Schmidt and Cameron? couldn't they just check out the loose change down the back of the armchair/ in their car's ashtray and pay for a new (and better one)?

Rich people don't get rich by writing lots of cheques. That option doesn't get examined before exhausting all possibilities for using OPM.

Raving Nutjobs (2)

jratcliffe (208809) | about 4 months ago | (#47037999)

Only a lunatic would risk violating the Benthic Treaty. Giving Blue Hades a casus belli would be a really, REALLY bad idea.

Really? Is anyone buying this? (1)

modi123 (750470) | about 4 months ago | (#47039227)

Riiiiiiiiiight.. "implosion". More like someone was poking around into territories - specifically outlined as forbidden - in the 1953 Benthic Treaty of Azores with BLUE HADES and got their expensive little toy slapped.

Try and not get us wiped out there Cameron.. thanks.

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