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SpaceX Falcon 9 Rocket Blasts Off From Florida

Dereck1701 Re:"An anonymous reader" (112 comments)

"Burn through of the sort that destroyed Challenger is detectable"

And yet it wasn't, while the investigation did focus on the SRBs fairly quick, it was months before they were sure. The ET tank explosion was enough to rip the shuttle to shreds, the only part of the spacecraft to survive the explosion intact was the heavily reinforced cockpit. And even that was believed to be heavily damaged. A capsule that had been caught in the explosion, exposed to 20 G's as it was ejected from the rocket, may have been operable enough to activate parachutes/escape rockets, and it may not have.

about a week ago
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SpaceX Falcon 9 Rocket Blasts Off From Florida

Dereck1701 Re:"An anonymous reader" (112 comments)

It doesn't help to to have a LAS system when you have no way of knowing to use it before your spacecraft explodes. If Challenger had known what was about to occur they may have been able to jettison the SRB's, throttle back on the SSME's and eventually disconnect the ET in a controllable fashion. Even a straight disconnect from the ET/SRB stack may have been survivable. Admittedly a traditional (capsule on top) configuration would have been the best for escaping an exploding stack but it wouldn't mean much of anything unless you had some indication that the explosion was coming (booster damage recognition)

about a week ago
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SpaceX Falcon 9 Rocket Blasts Off From Florida

Dereck1701 Re:"An anonymous reader" (112 comments)

"Soyuz crews survived the catastrophic failure due to a robust ascent abort system"

Soyuz has had two situations where the LAS was necessary, but I can't recall a single US launch that ever encountered a situation where one would have been of use. Its probably not a bad thing to have as it is a situation that will eventually occur, but the there are other failure modes that deserve more attention (heat shield failure, booster damage recognition, etc).

about a week ago
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Geographic Segregation By Education

Dereck1701 Re:bars, restaurants, dry cleaners, art galleries (230 comments)

Because people in urban centers spend most of their time going to libraries, zoos, museums & art centers? Most of those "bigots" from rural areas go out of their way and consider it a privilege to go to urban centers and experience those things. Many in those urban centers that could walk or drive to them in under 20 minutes rarely if ever go. I grew up in a rural area and my childhood was filled with trips to the Toledo Zoo, Washington DC, Cape Canaveral, various space & history centers, and my family was far from well off (farmer, UPS driver, McDonalds, Backhoe operator, Walmart is a rough employment history of my parents). I've seen people living out in the sticks with far more culture than some living a block from a major library/museum.

about two weeks ago
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Geographic Segregation By Education

Dereck1701 Re:Or maybe ... (230 comments)

I just did, at least for my state, and while there are of course some cities that do have higher crime rates than NYC (21) a VAST majority have lower, and in many cases far lower, crime rates than NYC (~580). Even sorting out all of the "small" cities (anything below 70,000) still shows only 5 cities with higher rates (One being Detroit) and 12 with lower rates. Of those 12 cities with lower rates 8 have half is violent crime rate (639.3). NYC may not be terrible crime wise, but its still not great either compared to the average (~387 instances of violent crime per 100K) or to many smaller cities.

about two weeks ago
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The Pentagon's $399 Billion Plane To Nowhere

Dereck1701 "Jobs" (364 comments)

"It counts 1,300 suppliers in 45 states supporting 133,000 jobs"

Assuming the low end ($399 Billion) that puts the cost at $3 Million per job...... If "jobs" are the focus someone needs to have their eyes checked. I also got a kick out of this one “"The jet has flown to every corner of the envelope and it’s meeting or exceeding expectations in performance,” Siebert said". Last I heard the VTOL version cracks its frame. Aircraft Carrier version can't catch the arresting wire, the stealth rating has been downgraded, it can't hold much ordnance, Its maneuverability is lackluster, the airframe is expected to have a much shorter lifespan than hoped, the fuel dump poses a fire hazard, the list goes on and on.

about two weeks ago
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Dubai's Climate-Controlled Dome City Is a Dystopia Waiting To Happen

Dereck1701 And how is this different? (265 comments)

And how is this different from many other urban areas, it sounds exactly like any other mall. The fact that they're building it bigger and more centralized doesn't change the fact that there are many such climate controlled shopping centers in most other cities, more than a few located only a stones throw from the "bad side" of town where their poorly paid workforce lives.

about two weeks ago
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A Box of Forgotten Smallpox Vials Was Just Found In an FDA Closet

Dereck1701 Re: Patience, my pretty... (120 comments)

The fact of the mater is though that it never did spread past the base, you can argue what "might have" happened till you're blue in the face but that still doesn't change the fact that even if no one had been vaccinated the other measures taken (quarantine, assessment of proximate personnel, public advisories, etc) at least in this case prevented the spread of the disease. If this had been an auto manufacturer and some safety mechanism that never saved a life but had resulted in 25 deaths, hundreds of debilitating injuries & hundreds more with minor injuries the public would have screamed for blood. Instead the government rushed indemnification legislation through. Thankfully modern vaccines are far less apt to produce these side effects (though their effectiveness is somewhat compromised as well), but they DO still happen (a partial study in China suggested 1 in a Million). Vaccinating the entire population for something that "could possibly, maybe happen" would result in at a minimum dozens if not hundreds of severe injuries/deaths, all for something with no clearly definable reason. Call me crazy but I like a little justification before I'm injected with something that has a remote possibility of killing/crippling me.

about two weeks ago
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Radical Dual Tilting Blade Helicopter Design Targets Speeds of Over 270mph

Dereck1701 Re:One hundred *billion* dollars? (103 comments)

Well, give them a little credit. The Joint Strike Fighter according to the last review had exceeded its cost estimates by more than 50%, so they're only more than ~$300 Billion over budget, oh except for the fact that they're producing less than a quarter of the originally projected 1,591 aircraft (365 per 2012 plans), the aircraft won't use more than 30% common parts between the models (was supposed to be 70%), the VTOL version is still cracking its frame and the carrier landing hook still has to be redesigned because it doesn't catch the arresting cable.

about two weeks ago
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A Box of Forgotten Smallpox Vials Was Just Found In an FDA Closet

Dereck1701 Re: Patience, my pretty... (120 comments)

You might want to look up the "Swine Flu Scare of 1976". A few cases of swine flu infected some recruits on a military base in New Jersey. Public health officials fearing an outbreak began a mass vaccination campaign costing over a hundred million dollars, up to 500 cases of Guillain–Barré syndrome, and at least 25 deaths. All to stop a flu that never exceeded 5 infections contained to Fort Dix, and only 1 death directly attributable to the flu. Vaccines can be a great thing, they have came a long way since even that incident, but used without justifiable cause they DO result in more harm than good.

about two weeks ago
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Privacy Oversight Board Gives NSA Surveillance a Pass

Dereck1701 "Privacy Board" (170 comments)

A "Privacy and Civil Liberties" board stacked with members/former members of the DHS, counter terrorism, Justice Department & FTC. Agencies well known for their efforts to EXPAND government authority not limit it. And anyone thinks for a second that their "report" would have ended any other way?

about three weeks ago
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The lightbulb I've most recently acquired ...

Dereck1701 Re: LED "lifetime" misconception (196 comments)

"Life: 22.8 years (Based on 3 hrs/day)."

And even that may be an exaggeration, I know CFL's still claim they will last years. Most that I've used last months at most. I recently bought a couple LED flood lights on clearance, when I was looking for some other 40/60 watt bulbs I noticed a flood exactly the same as the one I had grabbed from clearance, same manufacturer, same lumens, same wattage, same packaging. Only difference was the "lasts up to" numbers, half of what they were on the clearance bulb.

about three weeks ago
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The lightbulb I've most recently acquired ...

Dereck1701 Re:CFL's suck bad (196 comments)

Could be just one of those old wives tales but I've heard DO NOT PUT CFL's into ceiling fans. Something about them being very susceptible to shock/vibration. I've seen people go through a 10 pack of CFL bulbs in a month in those things.

about three weeks ago
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The lightbulb I've most recently acquired ...

Dereck1701 LEDs (196 comments)

I've been mostly buying LED's, expensive as hell ($12 for candelabra, $20 for flood, $7 for 60 watt) but so far so good, haven't had any of them burn out, I imagine they're saving me quite a bit in electricity. IF they last as long as they say they will (10+ years) they'll be well worth it, but we'll see of they live up to their claims better than those no good, useless, short lived, toxic piece of crap CFL bulbs.

about three weeks ago
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NADA Is Terrified of Tesla

Dereck1701 "Benefits" (455 comments)

"touting the benefits of dealer franchises"

Then let them compete with other sales methodologies in a free market basis. Creating an artificial market environment usually only exists to maintain an unsustainable market for a select group of people who have influence with those in power.

about a month ago
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France Cries Foul At World Cup "Spy Drone"

Dereck1701 410 (138 comments)

"someone used a small unmanned aircraft to spy on the team's training camp"

A 410 loaded with some bird shot and choked right would solve that problem real easy for you and be of no real danger (except for the drone).

about a month ago
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The Nightmare On Connected Home Street

Dereck1701 Overly paranoid (186 comments)

Seems a bit overly paranoid. I've never had a device that I couldn't get it to switch languages, adjust the volume or disable/reset a function (house telling you to exercise). I have no interest in networking the houses primary utilities (door locks, dish/cloths washer, lights, electricity, fridge, HVAC, etc) but some secondary functions (exterior security cameras, temperature/water sensors, etc) would be fine as long as they are not in any way connected to the primaries. Technology is great, but until we figure out device security it shouldn't be integrated too deeply into our lives.

about a month ago
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SpaceX Shows Off 7-Man Dragon V2 Capsule

Dereck1701 Re:PR (140 comments)

" simply because it was a sucky boondoggle"

The question is was it a sucky boondoggle for technical reasons, or political reasons. Technically the shuttle had a lot going for it, pretty hefty re-usability, high performance, major cargo capacity up and down. I think its major issues came from the political side rather than a fundamental issue with the technology. Funneling massive amounts of money to various constituencies, relying on defense contractors & no bid contracts. With some relatively minor design changes, an open and fair bidding/contract process & treating the shuttle more like a transportation system and less like a "can't fail" program to which you could attach your every pork project it could have become a VERY successful launch system. Instead we now have SLS, estimate to be greater than $4 billion per launch, even more than the shuttle, with the same contractors that made the shuttle program so expensive so expect those numbers to climb. This coming on the heals of the failed Constellation program, $11 Billion down the drain for one PR launch of a "spacecraft demonstrator" cobbled together from various pieces of old spacecraft hardware.

about 2 months ago
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UPS Denies Helping the NSA 'Interdict' Packages

Dereck1701 Re:yeah, whatever (207 comments)

"the NSA using whatever power they have to get the companies shut down if they didn't follow suit."

Kind of reminds me of Qwest, the one major communications provider to tell the NSA to take a hike when they started their domestic spying program. Not long after they were loosing contracts left and right and under investigation by the SEC.

about 2 months ago
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Driverless Cars Could Cripple Law Enforcement Budgets

Dereck1701 Look on the face of the first officer to..... (626 comments)

I hope they have a camera to take a picture of the face of the first officer that makes a "mistake" and tries to write one of these driverless cars a speeding ticket. With suites of sensors, accelerometers, LiDAR, radar, GPS there will be no doubt what the actual speed of the car was. Maybe we'll even get lucky and that whole "educated guess" court decision will get thrown out when an officer claims that a car was going 60 MPH when evidence from a dozen sensors prove it was actually going 35.

about 2 months ago

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