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Comment: Re:Someone with no brain is running NASA (Score 4, Interesting) 156

by ColaMan (#47710695) Attached to: Wheel Damage Adding Up Quickly For Mars Rover Curiosity

Ultra low temperature silicon rubber springs to mind.

Could have bonded a couple of millimetres thickness onto each alloy wheel. It seems the wheels only break when they have no cushioning underneath them, then the point loads on the tread are too high.

Oh well, I guess they'll know for next time :-)

Comment: Odd material selection (Score 0) 156

by ColaMan (#47710331) Attached to: Wheel Damage Adding Up Quickly For Mars Rover Curiosity

Still unsure as to why they didn't go with polyurethane or hard plastic wheels or similar. Probably about the same weight as the alloy ones, much less susceptible to fatigue.

Might be hard to find something that's good for those temperatures, but surely not that hard. Or were they expecting more sandy areas?

Comment: Re:Newsflash: mobile doesn't actually matter. (Score 2) 140

by Bonker (#47709091) Attached to: Ballmer Leaves Microsoft Board

I wish I had upvotes for you.

I am a power user. I'm currently surrounded by two very powerful PCs... rather a high-end 'docked' mac laptop dedicated to development work and a frankenstein's monster BYOC dedicated to gaming, Watching and converting video (-- Anime junkie) and artwork.

I also own a little Samsung Android tablet. Despite the mobile development workstation, I use the ever-loving snot out of that tablet. I use it to watch video I've converted for it, read books and magazines, browse web while seated in my nice club chair in the living room, have a reference site up while console gaming, and art. Turns out that Autodesk has a VERY nice painting app for $6. Works beautifully with cheapy capacitive styluses.

I consume the vast majority of my Crunchyroll subscription on it (more anime and manga).

However, I don't use it at ALL for email.

So yeah, mobile matters.

Comment: Re:Microsoft naming practices (Score 1) 413

Yes, a good point about the exploits-as-we-type attribute of Microsoft's blackbox software.

Historically, IE earned the name "Internet Exploder" because during its early days, it would not only crash, but crash and take the file system down with it, requiring a complete reinstall/rebuild of the system. I was slow moving from the Atari ST world onto PCs for my home system and when I did, the new PC came with Windows '95 with Internet Explorer built in to the OS. In the first thirty days of owning this system, IE crashed and trashed three times, after which I went down to Powell's Books in Portland and bought a copy of SAM's Slackware Linux -- and never looked back.

Comment: Re:Job Security (Score 1) 160

by jafac (#47683469) Attached to: The Flight of Gifted Engineers From NASA

The point to this practice (yearly rank-n-yank) is really nothing more than a little S&M show to keep the shareholders and investors hard, and to keep them pumping. There is little actual value to this practice, and it has been shown to be actively BAD for overall performance. (don't get me wrong, you can still fire the slackers for slacking) - but in the commercial world, you have to occasionally perform these human sacrifices to the golden calf.

Same actually goes for outsourcing and offshoring. Long term, losing practice. But it gets those shareholders WET WET WET to believe that management is tough on the mythical "undeserving bottom 10%".

Comment: Solution (Score 1) 450

by eyepeepackets (#47677703) Attached to: Web Trolls Winning As Incivility Increases

Provide a common forum without restrictions by having a two-tiered forum: Serious Discussion and Peanut Gallery. How sites impliment this is optional, but it does allow for both the serious and the silly, the thinkers and the trolls. Requires quality supervision and moderation, yet here is the rub -- sites which either don't want to moderate their forums or do a really crappy job of it (Slashdot, this mirror is for you) are the ones that have the most trouble with trolling.

Make sure your code does nothing gracefully.