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Largest-Yet EVE Online Battle Destroys $200,000 Worth of Starships

notea42 Re:Strategy? (463 comments)

There is a lot of strategy. However, since the battle happens in 3D and there's no real way to maintain formations, you tend to end up with these blobs of friendly ships and enemy ships. The strategy is in maintaining the proper range to friends and enemies. Weapons have different ranges and tracking speeds. Similarl, the repair ships (think healers) have limited range as well (roughly 50 km for the largest). In these big fights, a lot of the work is in choosing targets, trying to do enough damage to destroy the target before his repairs kick in. There's also a fair amount of complication from the electronic warfare possibilities - jamming and such.

about 9 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: How Many of You Actually Use Math?

notea42 All the time (1086 comments)

I work in the defense industry, writing software for both fielded systems and the modeling and simulation used to define and design such systems. I constantly use algebra, trigonometry, FFTs, logarithms, complex mathematics, statistics, probability, and a bit of calculus underlying many of the models. I do a fair amount of data analysis, which has me thinking about the various ways to condense and display data. My coworkers who can't understand the math are relegated to building UIs and writing messaging interfaces. Those of us who can understand the math create all the underlying code doing the real work. The former are much more likely to be viewed as replaceable and laid off in the bad times.

more than 2 years ago
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Nationwide Test of the Emergency Broadcast System

notea42 cell phones (271 comments)

It seems like the system would be greatly enhanced by simply requiring the cellular providers to send a free text message to every subscriber. It could contain the essential information and/or a link to more info, or simply say, "Turn on the radio or TV"

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: How To Enter Private Space Industry As an Engineer?

notea42 Re:State school = less debt. (283 comments)

I did precisely what you described - good state school undergrad followed by top-tier university for graduate school. I still met many of the leaders in the field while a PhD student and got paid to go - tuition waiver plus stipend. I came out with a PhD debt-free and have never regretted it. Paid internships or co-op work are definitely worthwhile.

more than 2 years ago
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Robots To Clear the Baltic Seafloor of WW-II Mines

notea42 No robots here. (286 comments)

This would be a lot more interesting if it was actual autonomous vehicles. The article makes this sound like the same old human-labor intensive process, just by a tethered remote vehicle. It seems like a well designed set of robots would be capable of finding, identifying, and destroying the mines with minimal supervision. You could run a mothership to supply power and fresh explosives. A bit of effort could clean up ALL the mines in the area, not just the few that happen to be in the way of this particular pipeline.

more than 4 years ago
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House Bill Won't Criminalize Free Wi-Fi Operators

notea42 Re:Sad, but predictable (540 comments)

Agree. The "who learns about the transmission or storage of information about certain illegal activities or an illegal image " part is critical. It doesn't say you have to screen everything that passes through your Wi-fi connection, just that you are obligated to report such a crime if you should happen to spot it.

more than 6 years ago

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