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Comment: Re:So much for long distance Listening (Score 1) 293

by bkmoore (#49504219) Attached to: Norway Will Switch Off FM Radio In 2017

Where I am in France, if I tune in to AM I mostly hear a shit ton of spanish language spoken very fast,...French AM station are a handful of national radios you can receive on FM anyway, only useful for grandmas and remote places (or from abroad, I guess)

I live in Germany. Recently built a transistor radio with my son to teach him about electronics and dipole antennas, etc. The first thing we received was a French AM radio station. Next project is restoring a 1930's Koffer (portable) radio. Losing over the air analog broadcasting would be a bummer.

Comment: Re:Entrapment (Score 1) 297

by bkmoore (#49451833) Attached to: Would-Be Bomber Arrested In Kansas; Planned Suicide Attack on Ft. Riley

.... I'd feel better about them if they actually caught real terrorists instead of creating them.....

But that would require doing real, hard police work. Professional operational terrorists are familiar with the concept of OPSEC and do not post their plans on FaceBook or Twitter. They probably do not even use email or cell phones. It's far easier to conduct mass surveillance and then try to set up the young, gullible, and easily impressionable when they make a rant on FaceBook about Jihad. It's a bit like the DoHS claiming that every confiscated water bottle, nail clipper, or pair of safety scissors is a foiled hijacking.

Comment: Re:masdf (Score 4, Insightful) 297

by bkmoore (#49451803) Attached to: Would-Be Bomber Arrested In Kansas; Planned Suicide Attack on Ft. Riley

You apparently didn't comprehend the story. That guy was committed to make an attack and die in the process before he came into contact with the FBI. Where is your evidence that the FBI was "pressuring" and "reassuring him"?

Quick google, the FBI has charged over 150 suspected 'terrorists' since 9-11 based on evidence from sting operations. Did they really prevent 150 people from committing terrorist acts? The FBI is either very good at catching terrorists before they even plan their attacks, or they are going out and setting people up. The Tsarnaev brothers kind of disprove the first possibility.

Comment: Re:Terrorism brought to you by the FBI (Score 1) 297

by bkmoore (#49451717) Attached to: Would-Be Bomber Arrested In Kansas; Planned Suicide Attack on Ft. Riley

Anyone who passed high school science (or grade school if you're a bit older), or is literate and has access to the internet can figure out how to make bombs.

The hardest part in bomb making is not blowing yourself up in the process. Chemical reactions do not always scale well, especially ones that deal with explosive compounds.

Comment: Knee-jerk reactions and captaincy (Score 1) 460

by bkmoore (#49422069) Attached to: Planes Without Pilots

What the article in NYT seems to omit is that the German Wings mishap could have been prevented if the Captain was able to regain access to the cockpit. But in the politically-charged aftermath of 9-11, we mandated a cockpit-door system on aircraft that under certain circumstances has no back up option for the event that the captain is locked out of the cockpit. A more careful analysis of all the risk at the time might have produced a system with at least some means available for the Captain to open the door from the outside if necessary. Going pilotless falls into the same category of reactive thinking because it is creating another system without any backups. Computers may not be suicidal and they may not make the same kinds of mistakes that human pilots make, but they do make different ones. What's missing from the NYT article is information about the safety record for pilotless aircraft. They can and do fail. Good aviation safety requires taking into account the big picture and making educated tradeoffs to minimize the total risk. Quick fixes or knee-jerk reactions often end up creating new hazards and often increase the total level of risk.

I think a lot of the automation proponents are missing the point and fail to understand the role of a pilot in command of an aircraft. He is not just there to steer the aircraft. He is there to accept and take responsibility for the safety and well being of the aircraft and all those who are riding on it. If we go pilotless, who will check the maintenance records and accept that the aircraft is air worthy? Who is responsible for ensuring that the weather meets minimums? Who is responsible for ensuring that the aircraft is properly loaded and balanced and that the fuel load is adequate for the planed flight and any unplanned contingencies? I would rather trust a person who's ass is sitting in the same aircraft than some faceless manager who is sitting the ground who presses "GO". We have known for at least the past 1000 years the importance of having one person on board who is in charge who has the authority to make decisions when things go wrong. Technology will not change this.

Comment: Re:This too shall pass (Score 1) 54

by bkmoore (#49360021) Attached to: Notel Media Player Helps North Koreans Skirt Censorship

North Korea should go after the American model of subjugation.

Yes, workers are much better off when all the wealth is controlled by one individual or one political party.

Was thinking about Germanwings flights today ....

Don't know what that has to do with N. Korea. I do know that in the Soviet Union there were no airplane crashes, ever.

....American Government never shied away at helping a dictator.

The American government never shied away at helping a dictator who had something that the American government wanted.

Comment: Re:the law has to be better (Score 2) 385

by bkmoore (#49355943) Attached to: Modern Cockpits: Harder To Invade But Easier To Lock Up

1. doctors and psychologists who do reviews for organizations that have employees with major responsibilities: the military, nuclear plants, airlines, etc, they should be required to inform employers..... it's safety. there was apparently warnings that mental health evaluators and employers knew that this guy had serious depression. he should simply never have been allowed to continue to be a pilot....

That's exactly the reason that this person did not tell his employer that he was having a mental health problem. He knew that if he did, he would be out of a job and have to give up his dream of being a pilot. I agree with your statement in principle, that some people have no business operating an airplane, but we also need to look at creating a culture where people can be honest about their health problems and be given an opportunity to get back on the horse once they recover.

Comment: Re:Kill them all. (Score 5, Insightful) 336

....They need to die. Every last one of them..... It's about a power-vacuum that was created in the Middle East....

That's exactly the problem. We make a list of every so-called asshole and kill them all only to find out that the problem hasn't been solved and that we need to make a new list of the new assholes who filled in the power-vacuum we created by killing the last bunch of assholes. Not to get all soft here, but the ISIS, Al Quida, etc. are symptoms of underlying political and social-economic problems that need to be addressed. The middle-east was always politically unstable since we broke up the Ottoman Empire in 1920. But the violence was limited as long as the economy was able to provide employment for the majority of the population. What we have had since the 1990s is the rise of globalism and the erosion of middle-class jobs, especially in the countries that have failed to diversify their economies and encourage innovation. The combination of economic pressure and lack of legitimate political structures has caused a perfect storm in which organisations such as ISIS can thrive.

Comment: Re:No opportunity (Score 1) 205

by bkmoore (#49256993) Attached to: Steve Jobs's Big Miss: TV

TV does not offer a company like Apple much opportunity....There's no UI problem that keeps people from being able to get the most value out of their TV...

Go back 10- or 15- years, the UI problem with TV was on-demand content delivery. Remember mailing DVDs back and forth or trips to Blockbuster with the constant reminders to "be kind and rewind?" But agree with you that the opportunities of content delivery are limited at best when your business model is hardware centric. Other than a set-top-box or connectivity with a Mac / iPod, there's not much else Apple could sell in the commodity TV market.

Comment: Re:"an act of social provocation"? (Score 1) 367

by bkmoore (#49200643) Attached to: Come and Take It, Texas Gun Enthusiasts (Video)

I'm from the UK and I'm having a hard time understanding this. What are these gentlemen trying to do? What is the context around blocks of aluminium being made into guns? What problem does that solve?

It solves the problem that any untrained knucklehead can now mill a gun without having to bother to take the time to master the craft. It makes a political statement of sorts because a lot of Americans think there's a hidden secret government agenda to disarm society and implement a pseudo-socialist police state under UN control on American soil. Promoting the idea of a such a secret agenda is good business for the gun industry, the NRA, etc.

Comment: Re:is it an engine or a display model? (Score 2) 58

by bkmoore (#49148055) Attached to: Researchers Create World's First 3D-Printed Jet Engines

Even for the more "primitive" 3d printing metal techs, they're just lost wax casting where the original mold is 3d printed. So the results are no worse than any other lost wax cast metal.

The problem with lost-wax and other molded metals is that the fatigue strength is much lower than forged or machined parts. Tolerances are also much looser because the tolerances from each step - wax positive, ceramic negative, poured positive, etc. add up. Fatigue life might not be an issue for a model airplane engine, but it is a safety issue for anything carrying humans.

Real Programmers don't write in FORTRAN. FORTRAN is for pipe stress freaks and crystallography weenies. FORTRAN is for wimp engineers who wear white socks.