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Comment: Re:Wildly premature question (Score 1) 81

by Bruce Perens (#48620117) Attached to: SpaceX To Attempt Falcon 9 Landing On Autonomous Spaceport Drone Ship

If we look at jet aircraft, wear depends on the airframe and the engines, and the airframe seems to be the number of pressurize/depressurize cycles as well as the running hours. Engines get swapped out routinely but when the airframe has enough stress it's time to retire the aircraft lest it suffer catastrophic failure. Rockets are different in scale (much greater stresses) but we can expect the failure points due to age to be those two, with the addition of one main rocket-specific failure point: cryogenic tanks.

How long each will be reliable can be established using ground-based environmental testing. Nobody has the numbers for Falcon 9R yet.

Weight vs. reusable life will become a design decision in rocket design.

Comment: Re:It's required (Score 1) 166

by nickovs (#48613423) Attached to: Verizon "End-to-End" Encrypted Calling Includes Law Enforcement Backdoor

Firstly, if you can facilitate multi-way calling then it is clearly technically feasible to support a wire tap. Secondly, unlike many other snooping regulations, CALEA explicitly obliges telecommunications companies to modify their systems and equipment in order to facilitate "lawful access" (sic). Verizon are a telco, not an app company, so they are bound by CALEA in ways that people like Silent Circle or CellTrust are not.

Comment: X.org? (Score 2) 73

by nickovs (#48569937) Attached to: Why Open Source Matters For Sensitive Email

If I was publishing an article talking about how huge numbers of eyeballs solves security problem I'm not sure that I'd choose to publish it the day after it was announced that the X window server code has had some serious security bugs for 25 years that have only just been discovered. Clearly open source code can have serious security holes that go unnoticed for a very long time.

Comment: Wikipedia the vector (Score 1) 61

by Bruce Perens (#48386659) Attached to: Researchers Forecast the Spread of Diseases Using Wikipedia

Like others I found the headline confusing. I read it as "Researchers are predicting the use of Wikipedia as a vector for the spread of disease". This may mean that:

  • Disinformation and ignorance are diseases.
  • Memes and computer viruses are diseases.
  • Wilipedia contains information that leads to depression.
  • Instructions on Wikipedia lead to substance abuse.
  • This is getting entertaining, fill in your own reason here.

Comment: Re:Not a good week... (Score 1) 445

by Bruce Perens (#48298059) Attached to: Virgin Galactic SpaceShipTwo Crashes

One of the definitions I found was:

One who makes great sacrifices or suffers much in order to further a belief, cause, or principle.

I am sure that fits. While SpaceShip II is mainly intended for a non-exploration purpose, the program has resulted in some significant advances in rocketry and White Knight II has significant non-tourism use. These pilots have been involved in other space efforts, I remember the one who was injured from the Rotary Rocket test flights. There are lots of safer ways for these folks to make as much money as a test pilot is paid. They do what they do to advance our progress in aeronautics and space.

It's not so hard to lift yourself by your bootstraps once you're off the ground. -- Daniel B. Luten

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