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Comment: Made the trip to Florida (Score 1) 40

by Tildedot (#36054604) Attached to: May 16 Now Earliest Date For Endeavour Launch

...from Houston, to watch it take off last week. Couldn't stay more than 10 days, and had to get back to work. Sad that it didn't launch while I could see it -- still, I'd rather it launch and recover *safely* than anything else.
Also, there's a girl working the 7-11 at Cocoa Beach that has successfully called the scrubbed launches for *years* apparently. Maybe I should have called her before heading out east.

Comment: Re:Yup (Score 1, Troll) 338

by Tildedot (#34031484) Attached to: DOS Emulator In and Out of App Store

Great message! Good tone. A solid effort, and I agree wholeheartedly!
Not enough people use "decree", I think.

Still, as I read it to our guys in the breakroom, none of us much care for the closer:
"As it is, I am their worst foe"

Something missing, there. It lacks Zing.
Also, it makes it sound like you're a FOE, just not a very effective one.

How about these for your next post?

As it is,
"...I am their most strident foe!" -- sounds more opposed, I think.
"...I am their worst nightmare!" -- works well if you're Stallone, or the Governator.
"...I am diametrically opposed, sir, to their ruinous machinations!" -- 8^0
"...They will utterly rue the day!!!" -- Rue-age is always fun.
"...They lost me when the Mac wouldn't support Apple II 6502 binaries" -- too Old School?

And, our favorite:
"...They are dead to me." -- Nice, short, kinda "Goodfellows" like. :^)

Comment: Re:One small step... (Score 2, Interesting) 120

by Tildedot (#33984826) Attached to: Programmable Magnets

Railguns are nice, and would work for materials that could stand the strain of a Super-G acceleration.
Sadly, most people don't fit into that category.

I know! How about a maglev loop and a high mountain?

Evacuate most of the atmosphere from a track built as giant loop of pipe with a tail, something like the figure 6 (or 9, in Australia :^), except very, very large. Point the tail up the side of a tall mountain. Magnetically suspend the craft in the pipe, accelerate past escape velocity at a rate of 1-2Gs, then send it "up the tail" into space.

Possible? Could be!
Safe? Who knows!
Fun? You bet!

Comment: Re:Start with SQL (Score 1, Interesting) 149

by Tildedot (#28215171) Attached to: Directory Service Implementation From Scratch?

+1 to this. Extremely flexible.
We do all of this, except for plain text passwords in tables.
We highly recommend encrypting, or completely eliminating, plaintext passwords. Instead, create and store the required hashes (ssha, etc.) for various bits and pieces when you create a user, or the user changes their password.

Comment: Significant problem, amazingly poor article. (Score 4, Insightful) 361

by Tildedot (#27356801) Attached to: The Underappreciated Risks of Severe Space Weather

I really expect more from these guys.

That the power grid in this country would become a set of large antennas during a "carrington event" is an interesting problem. Inducted current would be tremendous. There would be fires, almost certainly, and blown transformers. Fusable links might help with the transformer issue, but I'm sure that some significant amount of transformer capability would be taken offline. Power stations would likely be immune from meltdown, but I don't know if standard trips would keep them all whole. Let's say that some 50% of the generating capacity (very generous), and 70% of the transformers (possibly low), were taken out by this event. A significant inconvenience, to be sure. Nothing that we, as individuals -- and as a society, could not handle. To assume, like the authors of this article, that the most powerful country in the world would simply roll-over is preposterous.

To propose, seriously, that "Modern Healthcare" would end in 72 hours when the emergency generators ran out of fuel -- this is ridiculous. The article's premise that modern civilization in our country would be thrown back to "third world" conditions is also completely without merit. Not to belittle the situation -- it would, in a word, suck. That said, we would rise to the occasion, I am sure of it.

Let's just, for a moment, reflect on how deep the fuel infrastructure is in this country. A power grid is not required for fuel distribution, though some level of power is required. Pumps that pump diesel can be run by generators, many refineries are capable of using their own product to generate power, and distribution of fuel to Hospitals and the like is a standard emergency procedure. Trains, tanker trucks, and ships continue to run. The transportation infrastructure would remain largely intact beyond the boundaries of very large metropolitan areas. The roads would continue to roll, and with it, teams of people working to fix the problem.

First, the plants, then the substations, then the cities and transmission lines. Would it be hard? Of course it would be hard. But we would continue to make it work, to adapt and overcome, and in the process make it better.

"'Tis true, 'tis pity, and pity 'tis 'tis true." -- Poloniouius, in Willie the Shake's _Hamlet, Prince of Darkness_

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