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Comment: Range, armament, altitude (Score 2) 353

Planes had to have a significant range - even drop fuel tanks had to be planned for (complicated plumbing + extra drag/weight at takeoff).
Need to carry significant armament - like a few 30ish calibre machine guns (7.62 mm). By the end of the war the US was pretty much .50 caliber only - and 6 to 8 of those in a plane - that is a lot of weight. The ME262 had 4 20 mm guns/cannons. Are you going to shoot through the props? if not, then you needed wing mounted guns. If so, you needed mechanism to keep from shooting the prop off the plane OR an engine/gearbox that allowed shooting through the tip of the propeller.
Finally, naturally aspirated engines might make for a good low level racer, but at 30,000ft, you need turbo or supercharging to keep things alive. More weight, more cooling

Comment: Re:When you have a bad driver ... (Score 1) 961

by Big Smirk (#45587173) Attached to: Is the Porsche Carrera GT Too Dangerous?

So drop State Farm.

20 years ago, Mustang 5.0 (1990 model) Erie insurance was 1/2 for a plain 5.0 vs. a GT. The GT had the extra spoilers (OK, higher repair cost), but more imporantly, the actuaries figured out that GTs were more likely to be involved in an at-fault accident. I let you ponder why (crazier drivers like spoilers?).
Anyway, for a $13000 car, State Farm wanted $4000/yr and Erie wanted $1100. Keeping in mind that at the time a 200hp 5.0 was considered a wild performance car.

Comment: Re:When you have a bad driver ... (Score 1) 961

by Big Smirk (#45586079) Attached to: Is the Porsche Carrera GT Too Dangerous?

Stability control often interferes with certain maneuvers - especially those that go beyond a tires ability to grip. In particular sliding or spinning the wheels. Stability control has gotten better as algorithms improve, but generally speaking, a professional driver can get a car around a track faster with stability control turned off.

Comment: Re:Yikes (Score 1) 1176

by Big Smirk (#42906149) Attached to: Driver Trapped In Speeding Car At 125 Mph

If you have a real stick shift transmission, not only is the stick actually connected to something (the transmission) but you would also have a clutch. Now clutch releases can and do fail, and at full throttle you would not be able to get the stick out of gear (unless you hit the rev limiter). Under load (like during acceleration) many/most manual transmission cannot be taken out of gear without taking the load off. I have driving a semi-clutch less transmission that allowed me to engage gears without using a clutch - but it needed a spark interrupter to get out of whatever gear it was in.

Comment: Re:Some observations (Score 1) 1176

by Big Smirk (#42906101) Attached to: Driver Trapped In Speeding Car At 125 Mph

The prius did have an issue with anti-lock brakes. Essentially you hit the brake after going over rough pavement and the brakes would start pulsating (and not stop the car). This was due in part to software they used to transition from regenerative braking to normal hydraulic braking. It lengthened stopping distances, but didn't prevent the car from stopping.

As for Toyota, as far as I know, not a single crash had been attributed to Toyota. Maybe carmats.

Comment: Re:Some observations (Score 1) 1176

by Big Smirk (#42906083) Attached to: Driver Trapped In Speeding Car At 125 Mph

3) A driver is not strong enough to stop the car against the engine, especially since the engine can down-shift to get more power. Some "mythbusters"-style experimenters disagree with this statement, but their conclusions don't track with these incidents. .

Which is because a vast majority of these 'incidents' are utter BS.

Driver claims total brake failure yet later when examined by technicians, the brake seem to be working fine. Since brakes are an independant system - typically dual/redundant systems - how exactly do they magically completely fail then magically return to normal functions.

More likely the unintended acceleration is from hitting the wrong pedal (or in this case control) or simply coming up with a lie to justify getting caught speeding.

Comment: Re:When I think of a quick GUI project, C#. (Score 3, Insightful) 278

by Big Smirk (#39106581) Attached to: Best Language For Experimental GUI Demo Projects?

One big negative on C#. Your code ends up looking like Visual Basic.
You end up with single files with massive amounts of code. I've seen C# files with thousands of lines of code. Each button, each rule for the button etc. and they are not grouped by any rhyme or reason. The are simply tacked on the bottom as the next function. Thankfully Visual studio helps you find everything.

Makes code walk throughs either hit or miss (did we go through all the functions on that button?) or scatter brained (function 1 - start button, function 2 - dialog box, funtion 3 - menu item).

Comment: Re:Dynamic RFID Ink? (Score 1) 67

by Big Smirk (#39009353) Attached to: Scientists Print Cheap RFID Tags On Paper

Long range RFID is pretty much 900Mhz (ish). To get the chip to work at ultra low power levels it has to be pretty small. We are not talking Intel top of the line foundry but 90nm or better. Bottom line, no way to print that chip.

As for the antenna - you can print that but the variations in printing (like 1/64 of an inch makes attaching chips more expensive. The attach costs they are targeting is .25 of a cent per antenna. To achieve these numbers speed is king.

Also, for maximum performance (best antenna tuning) ink technologies don't work so well. I believe most are chemically etched now.

So you can expect the cheapest RFID tags to be around 10 c. Bigger ones cost more (but can be read farther away).

Comment: Re:Glossing over one problem... (Score 5, Informative) 273

by Big Smirk (#38867045) Attached to: Shmoocon Demo Shows Easy, Wireless Credit Card Fraud

Both, wrong... you less so.

The credit cards use an induction form of RFID. The wavelengths in question are very long - would require a big antenna to transmitt and an equally big antenna on the card to receive.... well the cards aren't big enough. So you see this spiral pattern (inductive loop) that is the antenna.
YAGI won't do it. You need something more along the lines of the magnetic sensors as you leave a store (EAS - Electronic Article surveillance).

Credit cards are 13.56 MHz RFID. That's a wavelength of ~75ft. Not going to hide that YAGI very well....

Nope, inductive loops. That's why it only works over about a meter because the strengths of the magnetic fields.

13. ... r-q1

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