Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

We are sorry to see you leave - Beta is different and we value the time you took to try it out. Before you decide to go, please take a look at some value-adds for Beta and learn more about it. Thank you for reading Slashdot, and for making the site better!

Comments

top

What Happens When Nobody Proofreads an Academic Paper

bledri Evidence that society is in decline... (170 comments)

Just kidding, but people will make a big deal out of this because they can twist it to whatever "everything is falling apart" worldview they hold. The statement got added post peer review accidentally and people that had read the paper a million times missed it. As they use to say at the height of the Roman empire, "Pol fit."

Frankly, I bet that crappy Gabor paper gets a lot more interest now than it would have garnered with an appropriate reference.

about two weeks ago
top

Washington Dancers Sue To Prevent Identity Disclosure

bledri Let's hope he doesn't prey on them... (461 comments)

That said, you'd think an all knowing God already knows who the strippers are.

about two weeks ago
top

Space Tourism Isn't Worth Dying For

bledri Re:Chuck Yeager called it (594 comments)

He was referring to space tourism, not the Space Shuttle. The interview was on CNN in 2012.

Except he's wrong. Seeking adventure and the novel is part of the human experience. The fact that Chuck Yeager can't understand that space tourism is an expression of those human desires is ironic, not prophetic.

about three weeks ago
top

SpaceShipTwo's Rocket Engine Did Not Cause Fatal Crash

bledri Re:The most important part (150 comments)

Normally, the feather system wouldn’t be unlocked until the rocket-powered spaceship is moving about Mach 1.4, or 1.4 times faster than the speed of sound. Instead, the co-pilot moved the lever from locked to unlock when the spaceship was traveling at about Mach 1, Hart said. “I’m not stating that this is the cause of the mishap,” he added. “We have months and months of investigation to determine what the cause was. If we find the problem right away, we don't get paid nearly as much. I've been told we need to generate about $2 Million in billables before we can write up any conclusions ” In addition to the possibility of pilot error, Hart said the NTSB is looking a variety of other issues that may have caused or contributed to the accident

I presume others read my added words as well?

Only people that are so blinded by their ideology that they assume they know "the truth" without having to bother with real world facts.

about three weeks ago
top

SpaceShipTwo's Rocket Engine Did Not Cause Fatal Crash

bledri Re:Let's still cancel everything (150 comments)

This factor, not mere ideology or efficiency of free markets, is the reason we need to privatize risky technologies. The problem with a government effort is not that it is marginally less 'efficient' than a private one, but that in a Luddite-dominated culture a government effort, unless we can make it military and secret, will be doomed by its inevitable first accident. The Challenger crash caused a two-year delay of NASA's most advanced manned system, and the Columbia crash killed it for good.

NASA's most advanced (and only remaining) manned system was a flawed compromise. It was a wonderful but extremely fragile spacecraft that was designed to serve too many masters, and whose budget traded short-term investment for long term operating costs. It devoured NASAs budget. Grounding it for two years was the right decision. Grounding it permanently after the second failure (with three 20-27 year old spacecraft remaining) was the right decision.

Governments and corporations are both capable of good decisions and bad ones, it's ideology that claims we can't change our government for the better. And that ideology is what gives away the limited influence we can have.

To be clear, I am a fan of the privatization of (most) spaceflight. But that's largely because SpaceX does not behave like your typical corporate interests.

about three weeks ago
top

Silicon Valley Swings To Republicans

bledri Re:This is great news! (485 comments)

When did Obama ever attempt to work with Republicans on anything?

When he didn't even try to include a single payer option for health care. Face it, Obama is already basically a republican on all but a few wedge issues. And he doesn't really fight for those. What's funny is how much the right demonizes him. It's the left that should be disappointed in the poor bastard.

about three weeks ago
top

Apple Doesn't Design For Yesterday

bledri All the rage is so ridiculous (370 comments)

You'd think Apple just went on a puppy killing spree based on some of the posts.

I'm 50 years old with an astigmatism and after upgrading a 2011 Macbook Air what I can say is the font is different. I can read it fine. If you're having trouble reading it, the issue is more likely contrast or LCD smoothing, not the damn font. Try the Accessibility settings. It is silly that Apple doesn't allow people to change the font out of the box, but of all the things to rage about, it's pretty ridiculous. Especially on a supposed geek site where people should realize that OS X's configuration system is based on XML "property" files. You can edit them yourself with any text editor. Or you can use the Property List editor. Or you can download Tinker Tool for free.

Geeks know how to edit text files and download free software, right?

about a month ago
top

The Cult of Elon Musk Shines With Steve Jobs' Aura

bledri Re:Not Even Close to a Fair Comparison (181 comments)

Clearly you don't like the guy but to call him a huckster is ridiculous. As is accusing him of "sucking at the government teat." Tesla got a loan and paid it back with interest (unlike GM that got partially "bought" by the US government, bailed out, and then sold back to the private sector at a substantial loss.) As far as tax credits, all manufacturers of EVs get them.

You're upset that they build an expensive car to fund the development of less expensive ones? Your mad that 10%ers (not 1%), are funding the development of the Model 3? That bastard, using wealthy people's money to pay for the design and factories that the 50% will be able to buy. Musk spelled this out in 2006 in The Secret Tesla Motors Master Plan. And you're going to compare the P85D to a Volt? That's like being mad that a BMW M5 costs more than a Chevrolet Spark. I'm sorry you're not getting supercharger stations with lifetime free charging at the rate you want for a car you're not going to buy.

As far as Commercial Crew goes, it was not cancelled, it was put on hold because SNC was upset about Boeing winning a bid and they filed a challenge. SpaceX's win was not contested. SpaceX's bid was the least expensive and their program is farther along then anyone else's. NASA temporarily halted the contract to review the challenge, but the hold has already been lifted and work has resumed. In 2017 SpaceX will be delivering astronauts to the ISS. And if you don't know what's "special" about SpaceX launch vehicles, you're not paying attention. They are already the least expensive LVs per kg plus they are self funding reusability research. In December they will attempt to land a first stage on a barge after launching CRS-5 to the ISS. Their mere existence as a less expensive LV provider has already forced competitors to cut prices. They are already succeeding in reducing the price of spaceflight, which is the whole purpose of SpaceX. And if they succeed at reusability, it will be a game changer.

about a month ago
top

The Cult of Elon Musk Shines With Steve Jobs' Aura

bledri Re:Not Even Close to a Fair Comparison (181 comments)

SolarCity? The Gigafactory (which hasn't even been built yet)? Tesla?

The common denominator in all these businesses: tiny market share.

And the iPhone, iPad, iPod? Huge market share.

So, I guess Musk is a genius at making stuff nobody wants.

Tesla Motors, Inc.'s Demand Is Growing Faster Than Production

Model S has been an enormous success. Not only has the all-electric luxury sedan been outselling all comparably priced cars in North America in 2013, but Tesla is expecting sales to increase by more than 50% this year. Most surprising of all, however, is that Tesla is achieving this without spending any money on advertising.

People want the car, but most people can't afford it and Tesla still can't build the car fast enough to keep up with demand. But I suspect you knew that. You also probably know that consumer reports is calling the Tesla Model S the best car it has ever tested. The Gigfactory is part of the plan to price the Model 3 such that the middle class can afford it.

And you forgot to mention SpaceX which has single handily brought commercial satellite launches to the US. And supplies cargo missions to the ISS. And just won a bid for commercial crew to transport astronauts to the ISS. And have a launch manifest with over 40 launches on it worth over $4 billion dollars. In other words, SpaceX is in demand.

about a month ago
top

Past Measurements May Have Missed Massive Ocean Warming

bledri Re:Say "No more!" to Climate Posts (423 comments)

Enough already. The Earth is warmer, probably. We don't know for how much longer. We don't know how much warmer. We don't know how it's happening, mostly. We don't know why it's happening.

That's climate in a nutshell. Do you want a _government_ ringing in new policies based on that? A government can't even get well understood problems under control ... like say, traffic, or urban development. And if you dare say, "Hey, traffic is hard to model!", well guess what, climate is harder.

You think traffic would flow better without "government regulation"? Wow. You realize that all traffic laws are "regulation" right? And have you been places where there is no urban planing at all? Where there aren't building codes? Even before we could model earthquakes at all, it made sense to improve building standards based on what we did know.

And while we are still getting a handle on climate models, we know enough about physics to know that carbon dioxide, methane and other gasses we are pumping into the atmosphere will raise global temperatures. The oceans won't be able to absorb heat forever. The atmosphere is the ultimate tragedy of the commons, so yes, I'm all for governments trying to regulate pollution and green house gasses.

People get so hung up on the government is bad meme, they forget what the world was like before the EPA and companies dumped all sorts of crap directly into rivers. Also, everyone complains about climate alarmists but they seem to give the economic alarmists a pass. But I'll take a climate prediction over an economic prediction any day.

about a month and a half ago
top

NASA Asks Boeing, SpaceX To Stop Work On Next-Gen Space Taxi

bledri Re:oh common (139 comments)

Sierra Nevada's design was a riff on the Space Shuttle, which is just a terrible way to get to space and back. Yes, you have a reusable orbiter, but you add a crapload of launch weight. That means you can carry less. The goal of these current projects is to act as a space-taxi for passengers, not multi-week flights like the Shuttle. No one wants your design, people.

Calling it a riff on the Space Shuttle is a gross oversimplification. The Dream Chaser is a much smaller and simpler design than the Space Shuttle. The Space Shuttle was a delta wing whereas the Dream Chaser is a lifting body. A lifting body is a much simpler design and and more "robust" than the more semi-traditional aircraft design of the Space Shuttle.

Wings are extra mass. But so are parachutes and fuel to land. There is no free lunch with reusability. I'm more a fan of SpaceX's Dragon V2 more due to SpaceX's aspirations (and propulsive landing is cool.) But Dream Catcher is a viable design and I'd like to see competing approaches tried in the real world. That's how we learn. I do think that the "stop work" is bullshit.

about a month and a half ago
top

How President Nixon Saved/Wrecked the American Space Program

bledri Re:Contents of the Mars Plan Nixon Rejected (125 comments)

As a kid, I saw this summarized in the World Book Encyclopedia, but this is a much more grown-up explanation for it. By all accounts, Nixon was flabbergasted by the cost, and that's what really killed it. The shuttle was part of the plan, and it's all that got built, which explains why it seemed to have no purpose. http://www.wired.com/2012/06/t...

The Shuttle also a was too ambitious for when it was built and it served too many masters (NASA and the Air Force). This increased the complexity of the missions and craft, while Congress kept cutting funding and forcing design decisions (like segmented solid boosters so they could be produced in Utah.) It was an amazing but ultimately a fragile and ill conceived machine. Shortcuts forced on it by those constraints prevented building a truly reusable spacecraft and left us with an awesome "refurbishable" spacecraft that was expensive to build and damn expensive to fly. Don't get me wrong, I loved watching Shuttle launches and without it we could not have repaired the Hubble and building the ISS would have been much more difficult. But it was a bungled beast.

about a month and a half ago
top

How President Nixon Saved/Wrecked the American Space Program

bledri Re:The NERVA Project (125 comments)

Still, I cannot fathom why Elon Musk is sticking to chemical propulsion (ie. classic rockets) for his Mars endeavour. Whith his knowledge and SpaceX, he CANNOT not know about NERVA and space nuclear propulsion, and the point of readiness of such technology achieved in the 70s. I can understand avoiding using it for earth lift-off, due to common hysteria about anything labeled nuclear, but for the half year trip to Mars ?

I mean, come on, we're using nuclear to make our electricity, to power our aircraft carriers, to power our submarines, to power our ice-breakers, but we won't use it for where it is sorely needed which is a trip to Mars, where no one has gone before ?

The journey to Mars is a catch-22 situation. The length of the trip using chemical rockets requires shielding of the crew, which weighs down the craft, which makes it harder to accelerate and decelerate, which makes the trip longer/harder, etc ... Most problems are simply dealt with if you use a much powerful propulsion technology. More thrust available means shorter trip, means less shielding, means more cargo or a ship big enough for artificial gravity (self-rotating part).

I'll be really happy and take Mr Musk's Mars ambitions seriously the day he announces nuclear propulsion for his Mars ship. Until then ... I really have a hard time doing that.

No one is going to let you launch a nuclear rocket (a la the Orion project) from Earth. This means to get people into space the only viable option is chemical rockets. No matter what technology gets from Earth to Mars, we need inexpensive chemical rockets (that could include other technologies like Skylon or Stratolaunch). So step one is inexpensive non-nuclear launch vehicles. Step two is the ability to get a lot of cargo and people into space, which means developing a really big (Apollo plus) size rocket. SpaceX is refining step one, and working on step two while running a profitable company. Sounds sensible to me.

about a month and a half ago
top

How President Nixon Saved/Wrecked the American Space Program

bledri Re:Long Time (125 comments)

The deregulation came about because Clinton put a quota on banks giving mortgages to people who didn't qualify. His “The National Homeownership Strategy" was what caused the housing bubble and burst.

As you point out "The National Homeownership Strategy" was deregulation, which I agree is the problem. But let's be clear, the banks wanted and lobbied for the deregulation. There's no quota, no bank was forced to give a loan (a quota would be a regulation). They were allowed to make loans they wanted to, not forced to and not regulated. But people that hate regulation point to this as if this is an example of government overreach and conflate it with the CRA which required banks to make some loans in their local neighborhoods. CRA loans accounted for a very small portion of subprime loans and did not have a significant default rate. Only one of the top 25 subprime lenders in 2006 was directly subject to the housing law, all the rest of the institutions making subprime loans were doing so completely voluntarily.

Banks created "liar loans" specifically because investors wanted a place to put their money with a decent return and they were begging the banks for more loans which could be then be sold to investors as CDOs. The banks were deregulated, and the banks used their freedom to crank up short term profits, created the housing bubble and tanked the economy.

about a month and a half ago
top

The Era of Saturday Morning Cartoons Is Dead

bledri Re:Looney Tunes (320 comments)

Which has little to do with the Political Correctness Police in the USA.

If the PC crowd decided that Speedy ought to be offensive to Mexicans, then it WAS offensive to Mexicans (by definition, even if Mexicans enjoyed it thoroughly).....

No way could a cartoon in syndication for over 40 years be played out and irrelevant to children with nearly infinite entertain options available on demand. Seriously, why would someone born in 2004 and that has had entertainment available on demand bother with Saturday morning cartoons? Damn that political correctness giving people on demand entertainment!

If there were money to be made playing Looney Tunes on Saturday mornings, someone would do it. And are we really getting upset that children aren't sitting in front of the T.V. for hours on end watching broadcast cartoons on Saturday mornings? I'm not saying their doing anything "better" with their time, but seriously. This is something to give a shit about as if it's a bad thing?

about a month and a half ago
top

The Era of Saturday Morning Cartoons Is Dead

bledri Re:Looney Tunes (320 comments)

Looney Tunes, Bugs, Elmer Road Runner etc...THOSE were cartoons. What happened is the political correctness destroyed them. ...

Yup, that's why a Looney Tunes sitcom with all those characters, including Speedy Gonzales was produced between 2012 and 2014. Damn political correctness, killed Looney Tunes. Or maybe, entertainment has moved on and it just didn't get decent ratings.

As far as the original Looney Tunes cartoons, I grew up on those. Don't let nostalgia cloud your thinking. If I had access to all the forms of entertainment available now, I would not have watched so many Looney Tunes repeatedly. But it was the only game in town. Is it really so surprising that children in 2014 are not enamored by cartoons made between 1930 to 1969? Is it so surprising that after running in syndication for over 40 years that a cartoon might just be played out?

Naw, let's blame whatever cultural phenomenon we currently find annoying for everything. That's what our grandparents and parent did, it must be right!

about a month and a half ago
top

Are the World's Religions Ready For ET?

bledri Re:Islam and Math / Science (534 comments)

let he that has not ever typo'd cast the first Godwin.

I thought it was Goodwin?

Nope it's Godwin's Law. Admittedly my use of it was rather oblique as I was thinking of "grammar Nazis," the behavior of and label for are both ridiculous. Apologies if I'm missing a pun or something.

about a month and a half ago
top

Online Creeps Inspire a Dating App That Hides Women's Pictures

bledri Re:Where's the benefit? (482 comments)

Why would a man join this site compared with dating sites that let him see photos and don't make him jump through silly hoops?

One advantage is that if you see a woman's profile, there is a good chance shell be interested in you since she filtered out all the profiles that she hates. So it could actually be a more pleasant experience for men as well since the number of ignored/rejected initiations should go down. More likely more men will create profiles and no women will be interested in them and they'll have no chance at all. But who knows, maybe it'll work to both parties advantage.

about 1 month ago
top

Are the World's Religions Ready For ET?

bledri Re:Islam and Math / Science (534 comments)

And right after hitting submit, the typos just pop out of the page at me. Why can't we edit our posts? Keep a history that people can review, I'm fine with that. But seriously, let he that has not ever typo'd cast the first Godwin.

about 1 month ago

Submissions

top

Climate-Change Skeptic Richard A. Muller Now an AGW Convert

bledri bledri writes  |  more than 2 years ago

bledri (1283728) writes "The results of the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature are in and Richard Muller, the study's director (formerly an AGW skeptic) declares, 'Call me a converted skeptic. Three years ago I identified problems in previous climate studies that, in my mind, threw doubt on the very existence of global warming. Last year, following an intensive research effort involving a dozen scientists, I concluded that global warming was real and that the prior estimates of the rate of warming were correct. I’m now going a step further: Humans are almost entirely the cause.'

The study was funded by the Folger Fund, the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, the Fund for Innovative Climate and Energy Research (created by Bill Gates), the Bowes Foundation, the Koch Foundation, and the Getty Foundation."

Link to Original Source

Journals

bledri has no journal entries.

Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?