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Comment: Re:Yes, but... (Score 1) 203

by Rei (#47506969) Attached to: MIT's Ted Postol Presents More Evidence On Iron Dome Failures

Given how incredibly lame this missile's fuse is, you could literally defeat it by sticking a broomstick on the front end of your missile and rebalancing. That is, if the system even worked in the first place.

I had no idea that's how they triggered the Iron Dome warheads. Just a broken, angled light field triggering a central explosive a short time later on the premise that it'll be near the warhead at that point? That's so incredibly stupid. I don't know whether this guy's data about how effective the system is or not is accurate, but I can clearly see the glaring theoretical problems with such a system.

And this is ignoring the fact that they're using $50k missiles launched from $55 million systems to shoot down $800 rockets launched from pieces of drainage pipe. Even as poor as Palestinians are compared to Israelis, those are some pretty awful ratios. The Palestinians might as well save money and skip the warheads altogether, just shoot off as many empty rockets as they can to waste Israel's money.

Comment: Re: Minivans useful (Score 1) 190

by pnutjam (#47506811) Attached to: New Toyota Helps You Yell At the Kids
You often have to pull your seat forward and sit the back ramrod straight to get a rear facing car seat in. My experience is with a 2006 hyundai elantra, so I can't speak to other vehicles, glad you can afford something newer. This was several years ago. We also chose carseats that we could afford and were rated highly for safety. They were very wide. There was absolutely no way to get a person, even a child, in between the car seats in a 3 rear seat sedan. That's when we decided we needed a minivan.

Comment: Re:Other loud noises (Score 1) 266

by Rei (#47506761) Attached to: White House Approves Sonic Cannons For Atlantic Energy Exploration

Orders of magnitude are used for approximations of scale, not exact figures. And the Russian R-36 missile can take a 20MT warhead (although I think they've eliminated all of the R-36s in that configuration in favor of the MIRVed version, I'd have to check).

You're right, though, I think two orders of magnitude would be a more accurate figure.

Comment: Re: Here we go... (Score 4, Interesting) 203

by Rei (#47506103) Attached to: MIT's Ted Postol Presents More Evidence On Iron Dome Failures

I'm an atheist. But I am happy when terrorists die. I don't need to rationalize it.

Yeah, those damned terrorist children in their terrorist-loving hospital beds. Good riddance!

Oh, but Israel warned them, right? Yeah, great how that goes down!

Israel: Hey, just being nice and friendly and letting you know we're about to bomb!
Palestinains: Great, we're on our way!
Israel: Um, no... you can't come here.
Palestinians: So... you're going to open up the border crossing to Egypt?
Israel: Certainly not!
Palestinians: Okay... so I guess we're not leaving then.
Israel: Okay, your call, but don't say we didn't warn you!

Gaza has been since the beginning like a giant open-air prison camp. Where the heck are the impoverished people trying to flee the conflict supposed to go? And for that matter, for everyone criticizing Hamas for fighting and storing weapons in or near civilian areas... there is nowhere in Gaza not near a civilian area, certainly nowhere further than a stray tank shell can fly - it's one of the most densely populated places on Earth, over 5 times denser than Taiwan and 11.6 times denser than Japan. Israel forced as many people as possible into as little land as possible. And not accidentally. What little farmland there is can be overrun in a matter of minutes. Israel could fill the entirity of Gaza with tanks and artillery at a density of over 100 per square mile.

Comment: Re:Expensive? (Score 1) 210

by damn_registrars (#47503095) Attached to: How One School District Handled Rolling Out 20,000 iPads

Obviously it would be cheaper for education districts to band together and commission their own textbooks that cost $0 to distribute once written.

That is an oversimplification, to say the least. Even if you have a collection of districts who paid for the development of a textbook, it still has a non-zero distribution cost once it is complete. It still needs to be printed and delivered. If you want to go without actually printing it, you have to pay for the bandwidth to host it so that people can read the electronic copy (and then come up with a solution for kids who aren't connected to the internet at home or are disabled in a way that makes computer use impractical). Parents will complain about errors and ommissions in the book which will end up dictating rewrites.

This is not a small thing you are asking for, here. Your proposal then requires the school boards to fund such productions for every topic of every grade - in some cases multiple levels of one subject for each grade.

But the school boards are strangely disinterested in this option.

Primarily because the school boards aren't in the business of writing textbooks or funding the creation of the same.

Comment: Re:It is good verbally (Score 1) 4

by insanecarbonbasedlif (#47502497) Attached to: Phrase: It is interesting to note

So, be aware of your audience?

Or, beware your audience. Though on the topic, while it's not the most concise construction, signposting something you find interesting so that the reader pays extra attention (or even just a different kind of attention) to it is certainly common. I don't know if that makes it acceptable, but I tend to think it does.

Comment: Re:Old dreams (Score 1) 108

by Rei (#47502111) Attached to: A Look At NASA's Orion Project

Of course, the old Orion design has been significantly surpassed by a number of newer designs. Medusa, for example, is much better than Orion - the bombs explode in front of the craft behind a gigantic "parachute", which captures far more of the energy and the long cords on the parachute allow for a much longer, smoother acceleration pulse. The bombs are also able to be detonated much further from the craft, and the craft may be made a lot smaller.

Nuclear thermal - the first version that was being developed called Nerva - allows for "clean" (to varying degrees) fission propulsion from the surface. Or if what you want is high ISP in space, then a fission fragment rocket goes much higher than an Orion or Medusa design (and scales down a lot better)

Comment: It's like searching everywhere you ever lived (Score 1) 139

by WillAffleckUW (#47502061) Attached to: New York Judge OKs Warrant To Search Entire Gmail Account

A warrant like this is the equivalent to searching all the houses and apartments and cars and storage lockers you've ever had or anyone in your family or that ever met you ever had.

We fought a Revolution over this.

But Americans today are not made of the metal that would stand up against such things.


Repeat after me: Baaaaaaah!

Beware of Programmers who carry screwdrivers. -- Leonard Brandwein