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Comment Re:Elon Muisk is an intellectual midget and a frau (Score 1) 221

So what are the technical hurdles that would need to be overcome for there to be actual mining with robots? Doing some quick googling I see that Komatsu and CAT and a few others offer fully autonomous mining solutions. Are those just bullshit and don't work as advertised?

Comment Re:The problem with privitization? Or just no shit (Score 1) 474

Risk is definitely part of the game. Even after the Nth one of these things takes off headed towards Mars and there's a thriving self sustained colony on Mars, something is still going to go wrong. Despite how safe we make airline travel, planes are still going to crash. Even if you cower in your basement there's a non zero chance you're going to die of CO2 poisoning.

My expectation is by the time the first colonists land on Mars, there will have been numerous autonomous missions that have setup methane and oxygen plants as well as metric tons of MRE's. That still doesn't mitigate the danger of half way to Mars your ship gets zorched by a CME. Or upon decent unbenounced to the crew a micrometeor has cracked the PICA heat shield and everybody on the surface is treated to a brilliant light show as a 100t of cargo and 100 people get sprayed across the martian sky. Without shielding in the MCT or on the colony on Mars what's your daily radiation exposure going to be? What number of people after spending 80 days weightless will land on Mars only to have their hearts give out, or that slight embolism that got stressed during take off finally pops?

I'm completely fine with risk, the question that needs to be asked is what the risk factor is going to be. Unfortunately, we can model this problem all we want, but people will still have to go do it and see what happens. I know before I'm too old of a man, they'll be a monument to the brave pioneers of colonization who gave their lives.

Comment Re:Am I reading this right? (Score 5, Informative) 79

No. The helium is used to pressurize the liquid oxygen tank and provide back pressure to the engines. Basically it's the gas that's used to shove the LOX down the fuel lines to the engines as fast as possible.

Also when you're listening to the com loop when you hear "Engine chilldown has begun, they're pumping through the engine.

The prior mishap was caused by one of the struts that holds these tanks to the inner walls failing.
This failure was caused by the tank itself bursting.

I'm suspecting they're going to have to reengineer the COPV helium tanks to be a bit tougher.

Comment Re:Competition....from Oracle? (Score 1) 157

Think about the fact that Intel currently runs entire batches of CPUs customized for Amazon EC2. Yeah, for some small scale cluster Oracle's got some blisteringly fast cluster with kick ass interconnects and fast storage. However unless they're ready to invest the billions Amazon has already invested in AWS/EC2, they'll never be able to compete with amazon at scale.

Also, no matter what oracle does it's still trapped in Amazon's paradigm. Whatever they make for a cluster still has to adhere to amazon's standards so customers can migrate their data over...

Oracle may have built a one off super car, but it still has to drive on amazon roads... Good luck!

Comment Re:It begs to say... (Score 1) 140

My thoughts exactly. I would have been more shocked if they'd said "After 6 months barely any porn use!" I can't understand how this got into the deployment stage without someone with a clue going "You know, we're just putting porn kiosks out everywhere."

Comment Here's what they could do. (Score 1) 618

As a group categorically refuse to train their replacements. If one person says they're going to do it, the administration can single that person out and make an example out of them. When the entire staff locks arms and says "no". What can they do then?

1. Proceed with firing them... That's great except for the problem where all the knowledge goes out the doors.
2. Lock them out... Except they only manage the physical access, so they're not sysadmins, nor know how to close accounts, etc.
3. Lawyer up and sue them for breach of contract or terms of employment?

I suspect the last option would likely be what they'd do, but if that happened what then? If my companies suing me for refusing to train my replacement, I don't see any incentive to train my replacement.

The whole thing seems like a fluster cluck from top to bottom.

Submission + - Falcon 9 explodes on pad (

Mysticalfruit writes: NPR is reporting that a Falcon9 carrying the AMOS-6 satellite that was supposed to launch on Sat exploded during it's scheduled static fire. No injuries are reported. They're reporting that this was going to be the first reflown first stage.

Comment Re:Still higher than a Soyuz launch (Score 2) 121

One of the reasons that SpaceX had to go on the K street offensive is because ULA specifically managed to score a 36 launch billet that was a no-bid contract worth billions. This was one of the reasons that SpaceX sued the federal government. It was to force them to open up and competitively bid. As an citizen, do you want to pay 100M a launch of 400M a launch? I'd argue it's the other way around. ULA has a long and storied history (with executives going to jail, etc) of paying to play with congressmen, etc.

Comment Do it right. (Score 1) 366

To echo what I've seen quickly, RAID is not backups. If something (like cryptolocker) suddenly encrypts all your files... you're still completely utterly FUCKED.
If your domicile burns to the group, you're fucked. You need something that'll keep your data consistent, and keep it safe from theft/fire/destruction.

I'm going to ignore any cost considerations... whatever.

Build two identical boxes. The first box is going to sit in your place of residence, the second is going to sit elsewhere (like your parents house, or a buddies)
Each box is running your OS dejour that naively supports ZFS, a pair of 4TB drives, setup as a ZFS mirror volume. Use whatever software you use to copy data to the local box, rsync, crashplan, whatever, once that task is completed, you'll drop a snapshot of all the pertinent file systems you care about. You now, remotely drop a snapshot on our offsite box and then kick off an rsync that catch any changes.

1. If something has drastically gone wrong with your data locally, you can always revert (in this case promote) your latest snapshot (or whatever snapshot you like best). Plus you can thumb through all your snapshots and see what you like...

2. Even if something hasn't gone wrong, but you liked an old version of something, you have that too... though you'll have to decide on a strategy for how many snapshots you're willing to keep. zfs snapshots are now scm but sometimes you realize you don't have something under control and then you wish you did.

3. You've got a full duplicate of this elsewhere in case fire/flood/theft/etc.

4. Monthly do scrubs of your file system just to make sure everything is healthy. Want to expand your volume? Add two more disks and you can tack on another mirror. Yeah, it won't be balanced but you'll suddenly have more space.

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