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Comment Re:Have you ever tried changing the 'culture'? (Score 1) 915

That shouldn't be a point of pride. "Thick skin" should not be necessary for a daily discussion, people should be able to act like adults, even when emotionally invested in their technological baby. It's one thing to have an argument, it's another thing to have to gear up for an argument for every single discussion.

Comment Re:And all they wanted was a faster horse (Score 1) 732

That may be, but this is specifically a fighter plane. A plane designed to dogfight.

Wrong, for two reasons. Firstly, the F-35 is designed as a multirole aircraft: the F-22 is a pure air superiority fighter, but the F-35 is supposed to be able to look after itself in the air and hit ground targets too.

The "look after itself in the air" would seem to agree with my assertion that one of the metrics for which it was designed was aerial combat. I did not say there were not others. The F-35C adds carrier landing and storage. If it is really bad at that you can't excuse it away with, "but it's a multirole aircraft, so it should be judged only as a FB, even if it splits apart on deck when it catches a hook." For one thing, single flight planes get *really* expensive.

Sure it's a multirole aircraft. In fact, each type has a different focus. But one of the roles it is currently intended to fill *is* aerial combat. But I disagree that it will necessarily be bad at it forever. These airframes can sometimes see a lot of changes over their lifespans. And if it is, it still will likely be useful. Look at the B-1B conventional munitions conversion: aircraft do shift roles as needed.

Comment Re:And all they wanted was a faster horse (Score 1) 732

What you're saying is it's a bad tool for dick measuring games like Russia with its bombers or Greece and Turkey with their US provided fighters play? Well that I agree, it might hurt the exports if F16s beat it at it.

And tsotha already answered but I believe it's worth repeating: it's not a fighter. It's a design-by-committee everything plane.

I didn't say it's a bad tool, and I don't think we really see the final iteration of the concept, so the problems today aren't what the problems with it will be in 15 years. They will be different and exciting new problems. But it'll likely serve well.

I almost dropped in the multipurpose/multibranch aspect, but I was addressing specifically the assertion that it is stupid to be judged as an aerial combat plane. It is an aerial combat plane by designation and it is designed to fill that role. As has been pointed out several times (which quite gratifies me; there are some smart folks here), it is a multirole aircraft that has the primary designation of fighter, but it certainly isn't *only* a fighter.

But it is indeed questionable to say aerial combat is *not* a role it is intended for. Multirole does not preclude the metric, it merely adds more criteria for the aircraft. The person to whom I was responding was saying that it was ridiculous to judge it's merit in that role. You might as well say that the F-35B should not be judged as a military craft as it has the role of a VTOL aircraft, so it's moot if it can carry munitions. Sure the F-35 series is also FB, but it *is* designed for an aerial combat role *as well*.

Comment Re:Ya, right (Score 5, Insightful) 277

That's an assumption that'll get you killed.

Lots of cops playing army without as much danger of being actually shot at. Lots of forces operating as for-profit gangs that do whatever they want. They'll shout "stop resisting" as they de-escalate the situation with violence.

I'm not saying that there aren't any, or not even that most cops aren't good. But it doesn't take very many to poison a whole department, only a few in the higher ranks to run out the good cops.

Comment Re:And all they wanted was a faster horse (Score 1, Interesting) 732

I disagree that dogfighting is relevant in modern warfare, at least with USA as one side.

That may be, but this is specifically a fighter plane. A plane designed to dogfight. That is the metric upon which it is being judged here.

Similarly, an ICBM is a poor tool to handle smugglers off the coast of the US. You can judge the concept of a fighter plane as irrelevant in 2015-2037 (the period over which they are being delivered), but your initial statement, "Why is dogfight a parameter in assessing 5th generation plane?" can be simplified down to, "Why is aerial combat a parameter in assessing a plane intended for the role of aerial combat?"

The answer to that simplified question is: Because that's the slot of functionality it is intended for.

But you probably meant to ask, "Why are we making 5th generation fighters anyway?" That's a good question, but I'd suspect that the answer is primarily because they are still used worldwide today in shows of force and occasional engagement. They are scrambled now when commercial jetliners go radio silent, ever since they were used as weapons on US soil.

Another aspect is that military forces are intended to be functional -- but also showy, so they can be used to intimidate. And intimidation is a tool of emotion, not logic. There are strange quasi-engagements between many countries on their borders to show intent to defend, and fighter planes are often used in that capacity. Being intimidating also helps your own forces. Fighter pilots are perceived as badasses, and a young person's gut instinct is to want to have the badasses on your side when you're being ordered to throw your body into armed conflict.

This is also related to why all branches still have swords as a ceremonial part of their formal uniforms, and they are used in situations like honor guards and events of historical or great personal importance. Military might is not a video game or board game with simple stats. It's sloppy and human, and involves more diplomats and mistakes affecting it than simple white room simulations tend to account for.

Comment Re:Expect the Republicans to stop this... (Score 1) 319

You can do your own doctoring, just like you can drive on your own roads.

If you want to participate in the benefits of society, such as healthcare and maintained, safe roads and such, you pay your part. The biggest problem is the super rich and the corporations that have bought their way out of paying their part.

Comment Re:Samzenpus got hit in the head this morning (Score 1, Informative) 528

You can keep your plan if it's a legitimate insurance plan. Lots of shitty plans stopped being offered.
It isn't a tax, as in it's not a line-item on your tax bill. By your logic, Wal-Mart is a tax, because they get corporate subsidies for their welfare-requiring employees.
You can keep your doctor, if your insurance allows you to. Before the ACA there were those problems, too.
It does cost less, overall. The rate of healthcare cost increases is the lowest it's been in decades. It's not about you personally, it's the overall trend. Not to mention more people now qualify for insurance.
Overall? Most people have better coverage, and more people have coverage, period. If you lost coverage, it was only because you were profiting from the people who were paying for plans that didn't really offer any protection.

Oh, and don't forget that the Baby Boomers are aging, and are creating a huge load on the system... that's driving costs up for everyone. But I'm sure that's Obama's fault, too.

Retirement means that when someone says "Have a nice day", you actually have a shot at it.