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+ - New operating system sets out to replace Linux on the cloud

Submitted by urdak
urdak (457938) writes "Today in CloudOpen in New Orleans, KVM veterans Avi Kivity and Dor Laor revealed their latest venture, a new open-source (BSD license) operating system named OSv. OSv can run existing Linux programs and runtime environments such as a JVM, but unlike Linux, OSv was designed from the ground up to run efficiently on virtual machines. For example, OSv avoids the traditional (but slow) userspace-kernel isolation, as on the cloud VMs normally run a single application. OSv is also much smaller than Linux, and breaks away from tradition by being written in C++11 (the language choice is explained in in this post)."

Comment: Re:Perfect analogy for NASA (Score 1) 184

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Comment: Re:Perfect analogy for NASA (Score 1) 184


For every step of aviation history there was an economic or military justification. Sometimes advances were carried out for national ego justification (e.g. the Concorde), but without economic justification, it could not be sustained and technology reverted a step back.

Space is in the same position. There is economic justification for commercial satellites, but no economic justification for the manned space program (or for the unmanned science and exploration program, but don't tell anyone). That is why we haven't been to the moon again and that is why the ISS will eventually be deorbited.

The problems of space travel are real. It takes huge amount of energy and labour to get something into orbit, and even more to get a human there and keep him alive. And what do you get in return? NOTHING.


Robot Dominates Air Hockey, Adapts To Opponents' Playing Style 49

Posted by timothy
from the bet-on-the-robot-kid dept.
colinneagle writes "Researchers at Chiba University in Japan have developed a robot that could frustrate teenagers worldwide with its impressive air hockey skills. What's remarkable about this air hockey-playing robot, which is not the first of its kind, is that it can sense human opponents' playing styles and adapt to defend against them. The key is how the computer controlling the robot views its opponent — at a speed of 500 frames per second. From there, the robot uses a three-layer control system to determine motion control, when it should hit the puck, defend its goal or stay still, and a third that determines how it should react to its opponent's playing style."

+ - Dennis Tito Proposes "A Mission for America": Two Humans to Mars

Submitted by
RocketAcademy writes "Dennis Tito, the first citizen space explorer to visit the International Space Station, has created the Inspiration Mars Foundation to raise funds for an even more dramatic mission: a human flyby of the planet Mars.

Tito, a former JPL rocket scientist who later founded the investment firm Wilshire Associates, proposes to send two Americans — a man and a woman — on a 501-day roundtrip mission which would launch on January 5, 2018. Technical details of the mission can be found in a feasability analysis which Tito is scheduled to present at the IEEE Aerospace Conference in March.

Former NASA flight surgeon Dr. Jonathon Clark, who is developing innovative ways of dealing with radiation exposure during the mission, called the flight “an Apollo 8 moment for the next generation.""

Comment: Re:Why not build spacecraft there? (Score 1) 186

by Cold hard reality (#41497771) Attached to: NASA Mulling Earth-Moon L2 Point for Mars Staging Station

You're called DirtyLiar, so probably a troll. I'll make this short.

Just off the top of my head, some of those technologies include:

Do you like computers, cell-phones, or palm-tops? Computers were a direct result of needing near instantaneous calculations using data that would be unknown until the moment it was going to be used. The invention of both the transistor, and the computer chip can be traced back to the need to make components as compact and light as possible. As was their subsequent miniaturization.

Computers were invented in WWII. Transistors were invented in 1947. Integrated circuits were invented in 1949, but not used on the Saturn V.

How about the convenience of microwave ovens,

Available since 1947.

or freeze dried food?

WWII tech. I'll stop now.

Comment: Re:Why not build spacecraft there? (Score 1) 186

by Cold hard reality (#41493819) Attached to: NASA Mulling Earth-Moon L2 Point for Mars Staging Station

I notice you selectively focused on the WWII part.

Sure, because that's generated a lot more technology than the space race. If you want something comparable to WWII, try the cold war.

As for the space race tech, yes a lot of that stuff came out of technologies developed by way of that.

Teflon and... ? and are you sure it wouldn't have come out of other research?

As for the rest, you are just showing you are another person who can find all sorts of reasons for not doing something, but you just rationalize things more than most.

Doing something usually means not doing something else. The manned space program sucks enormous amounts of money that could have been much better spent elsewhere. Can you compare the science return from Hubble, the Voyagers, the various Mars probe up to Curiousity, the Jupiter and Saturn orbiters, the various earth and sun observers, to the ISS? Even to Apollo? Do you realize the cost difference between those programs?

Boeing, Apple, MS, Intel didn't come out of nothing. They came out of a bunch of people doing something they thought was really cool, and generally pointless until a point was found later.

They either did that on their own dime, or that of people who believed in them. That meant they did it not because it was cool, but because they thought they could make money out of it. They were right and they did. If a space station is worthwhile, found a company and build it.

Guy like Gates and Woz weren't thinking "next multibillion dollar software company." They were thinking build something cool and they will come. All the original airplane makers started because they like flying.

No, they saw a business opportunity. No doubt they did it out of love as well, but if it was just that, they wouldn't have grown into such huge businesses.

I'll stick to my point of view. I'm tired of people telling me all the things that can't be done or shouldn't be done because of a lack of foresight and imagination.

It's lack of funding, mostly. If you can convince someone that you have the imagination and ability to build a space station they'll shower you in cash and wait patiently until the return you've foreseen appears.

Comment: Re:Why not build spacecraft there? (Score 1) 186

by Cold hard reality (#41483561) Attached to: NASA Mulling Earth-Moon L2 Point for Mars Staging Station

Most of what we consider "high tech" actually came out of WWII and the Space Race.

Really? Integrated circuits, LCDs, MRIs, the Internet? Digital watches?

WWII did lay a lot of the foundations, but there was a lot of development since.

We're in the last stages now of ideas and technologies that were originated to solve those goals. Now we need new goals.

People have goals just fine. Apple, Intel, Microsoft, Boeing didn't become giants out of nothing. Setting artificial goals simply leads to money being wasted where it isn't most helpful.


Basic research is of course needed, but if there is no place to focus it, mankind will get bored of it. It's like making national parks but not allowing people to go to them by either telling us we're not allowed to sully their pristine nature or just plain pricing the costs to visit them too high for the average person
  . Eventually people will forget about the flora and fauna there and not give a shit if some toad or owl goes extinct. Out of sight, out of mind. (Sorry, no car metaphor.)

Hire a good PR firm. This huge investment just to get people to give you money for spinoffs sounds like a scam.

The same applies for basic research (for the most part). If people can't see it being applied somewhere eventually, they won't give a rat's ass whether funding is cut for it or not. That is what is happening now. To combat this we NEED some place to apply at least some of what we learn in a spectacular way. Then people, average people, the ones who actually pay for most of the research, can actually see some of what they are getting for the money, and how cool that stuff is; and how it is worth it. Even if only a small part is used in a new space race, it will be enough to help pull funding through for all the less glamorous areas of research.

Or you can have real leadership instead.

Stop thinking rationally if you want others to pay for your stuff. They'll only do it if they get something out of it. Directly. In the U.S., national pride is huge. The more you can help fuel that, the more money people will give you. Build a space station. A real space station, not just some "let's stick our toe in the water and do a bit of research" space station.

The ISS is as real as it gets. You only say it's a toy because we put it up and ... nothing happened. If you put a bigger station there, the same nothing will happen. There's no science to be done there that can't be done better by unmanned satellites and probes.

Less of a lab, and more of a one that gives meaning to the word 'station', much like train station, and begins to make space travel routine.

Routine travel where? Mars, where there's nothing, and you have a launch window every two years or so? Other planets, where it's even more impossible to go?

.Use the research to create that in turn to create whole new technological ecosystems (much like the Apollo series did),

What would we do with even more Teflon?

and help keep people interested in science so they'll pay for more. The economic benefit (if it isn't offshored by some cynical self serving idiot) is that America will have technology to sell to the rest of the world that it doesn't yet have. This in turn fuels a healthy economy which can then afford to finance basic research. But only if the economic benefits STAY in the country.

It doesn't work that way. You borrow money to pay large salaries to talented people. They spent it, some of it on imports. You have less talented people in other fields, so you need to import products to fill the gap.

Cool sells. Space stations are cool. A nerd in some back lab is cool to many technology lovers, but even then, not all. And certainly not to most of the rest of society.

How much can you show vids of people floating in a tube? gets boring in 20 seconds. Even the moon landings became boring.

Proof? People pay billions for spoiled sports stars to make millions entertaining them. This gives society a place to vent its anxieties and aggressions (even vicariously). And it is labelled cool and spectacular because it allows those human emotions in full force. Face it, some guy writing equations at a desk, or dolling out solutions from a pipette is pretty dull and boring in comparison. The science that excites is big rocket ships, robots, and risk. Give the crowds what they want, give them Orange Flavoured Tang and Space Opera and they will love you. Give them the spectator sport of science. Then you can pay for basic research. There is a grain of truth even in satire. In this case it is more like a boulder.

Maybe, but space is nothing like that. Only science fiction movies. Space is slow, boring, careful, empty.

"Nuclear war would really set back cable." - Ted Turner