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Comment: Re:Why stop there? (Score 2, Insightful) 82

by demachina (#47545081) Attached to: SpaceX Executive Calls For $22-25 Billion NASA Budget

Probably one of the best things NASA could do at this point is abandon ISS, stop paying for it, and tell the Russians its all theirs. There is a fair chance they would fly Americans to it for free rather than get saddled with that boat anchor.

If the Russians don't want it either its time to deorbit it. It would free up a LOT of money for more useful endeavors. Its never been good for much of anything, certainly nothing to justify the staggering price tag

SpaceX will have the ability to put astronauts in to LEO in a few years. Its not like its a crisis, there is very little for people to do in LEO at the moment other than to be lab rats for zero G physiology studies. You would think they would have done most of that work by now.

About the only point in putting people in space at all is as colonists, persumably on Mars. You can do just about everything else way better and cheaper with robots.

So until you are ready to fly people to Mars to stay, stop getting your panties in a bunch about getting them to LEO.

Comment: Re:pfft, 3.5% overrun (Score 1) 129

by demachina (#47539023) Attached to: SLS Project Coming Up $400 Million Short

I am nearly speechless that you would try to use the ISS as an example of a "success story". It was mind boggling behind schedule and over budget, though turning it in to an international project is partially to blame. The core is based on existing Russian design. If they had just launched that and kept it simple it would have cost a tiny fraction of what it did and accomplished nearly all the science ISS has done.

The fundamental problem with the ISS is its bled NASA and the manned space program white. NASA hasn't done ANYTHING useful, in its manned program since Skylab, other than maybe Hubble. They built Shuttle to fly to the ISS and the ISS so the Shuttle would have a place to fly. It resulted in NO breakthroughs or progress worth the price tag.

So what is your point on Falcon. I think you just agreed with me SLS is hopelessly uncompetitive and SpaceX approach is really smart.

SpaceX is trying to get to space cheaply, safely and with a very high launch rate.

SLS seems to be trying to come up with the most expensive, impractical and dangerous solution possible, just to keep funneling money to Lockheed, Boeing, ATK, etc. Its as if they are TRYING to develop a system that is sure to fail or be cancelled.

Note the proposed launch date, 2017, just long enough after the 2016 election so the next president can cancel it and start over.

Comment: Re:pfft, 3.5% overrun (Score 2, Insightful) 129

by demachina (#47535143) Attached to: SLS Project Coming Up $400 Million Short

"I can't imagine how demoralizing it is to spend years working on a project that would ultimately succeed"

None of NASA's major manned spaced projects are even remotely likely to succeed, they are not intended to do so any more. They are just a place to blow money, create jobs and put money in Lockheed and Boeing pockets. More importantly they buy votes in the critical swing state of Florida.

They are designed to run 4-8 years, produce nothing except votes, paychecks and contractor profits, then they get cancelled and start over. It is way easier and less risk than actually making anything that will fly.

It is not the political process that is broken, it is NASA and the political process.

Get a clue, and spend a few billion on SpaceX to help finish Falcon Heavy. I'm not sure why SLS is even on the table at this point, it isn't remotely competitive.

Lockheed and Boeing also need to be completely removed from the process. They are making a mint milking DOD contracts, they don't need to be in middle of the civilian space program fleecing NASA and taxpayers there too. They do not use money wisely, they devour everything thrown their way and produce as little as possible in return.

Comment: Re:No (Score 1) 261

by demachina (#47478059) Attached to: UN Report Finds NSA Mass Surveillance Likely Violated Human Rights

I should point out native americans are still largely unemployed, stuck in reservations on land white American's didn't want. One of their few rays of hope being the ubiquitous Indian Casino where they are exacting their revenge. Still they are second class citizens.

Blacks were still being massively discriminated against until the Civil Rights act which was around 180 years later. They are still second class citizens.

The poor, they are still second class citizens.

Women are the one group doing pretty well for themselves though they are still underrepresnted in government.

Look around the room at a State of the Union address. The room is still overwhelming full of affluent white men.

As for the founding fathers brilliant ideas on governence, it exploded in a bloody civil war in 80 years.

You need look no further than where the U.S. congress, courts and presidency are today. They are a smoldering ruin. They have never been the great institutions Americans are brainwashed in to thinking they are. Are they better than totalitarian dictatorships, sure. Are they models the rest of the world can aspire too, no, not really.

American governement is the best government money can buy.

Comment: Re:No (Score 3, Interesting) 261

by demachina (#47477977) Attached to: UN Report Finds NSA Mass Surveillance Likely Violated Human Rights

Try reading Zinn's A People's History of the United States. It will disillusion you of the comic book U.S. History taught in U.S. school where the founding fathers are all saints and geniuses.

They were mostly self serving and profiteering. Its fitting Andrew Jackson is on the $20 dollar bill because he was infamous for profiteering off the battles he won, mostly by seizing the lands he took and splitting it up between himself and his friends.

Comment: Re:No (Score 4, Interesting) 261

by demachina (#47475983) Attached to: UN Report Finds NSA Mass Surveillance Likely Violated Human Rights

The founding fathers weren't exactly the pillars of individual freedom you seem to think they were. They were an American centric elite and plutocracy trying to displace a Britsh centric elite and plutocracy, mostly so they could have a bigger cut of America's growing wealth.

You can tell because most of those constitutional protections and the Bill of Rights didn't apply to people who weren't affluent(i.e. who didn't own land), women, native American's, blacks/slaves and indentured whites. They applied mostly to white men who had wealth (at least enough to own land).

They actively prevented people who were not white, male and affluent from voting or holding office. They were mostly slave owners themselves, and they were for the most part very affluent and owners of very large real estate holdings. They were all 1%'ers.

The Declaration of Independence and Constitution were carefully designed to inspire support from enough people in the colonies for their Revolution to succeed, and to create the illusion of freedom, but they had no intention of relinquishing their power and control over the levers of government when it their Revolution did succeed. That plutocracy has never relinquished that control in the more than 200 years since.

The NSA along with the DHS, FBI, ATF and IRS are means for maintaining that control.

The Internet let a genie out of a bottle and created dangerous potentential for the rest of us to organize and try to win some of that power and control back.

When faced with the twin crises, and excuses, that were 9/11 and the 2008 crash it was nearly inevitable that The Powers That Be in the U.S. and U.K. would exploit every tool at their disposal, mainly computers and networks, to try to put a lid back on their control of their increasingly restless and networked homelands and to try to maintain their domination of the world as a whole in the face of increasing challenges.

The 2008 crash in particular resulted in widespread global disillusionment with the fact economies and governments are rigged to benefit the ruling elite and screw everyone else. When ruling elites start feeling that heat they trot out their police states, always have, always will.

Comment: Re:Haha, nobody will do this. (Score 1) 208

by demachina (#47311531) Attached to: The Simultaneous Rise and Decline of <em>Battlefield</em>

Game engines already exist. People already develop content though you kind of need a working and enjoyable game first, with some content, before people will develop more content for it.

Who funded Linux development in the early days, answer, noone? Would need to be a volunteer effort to some extent.

Hopefully Carmack will be disillusioned with working for Facebook soon and do it for love of gaming and graphics programming.

Kickstarter is the obvious answer if you really want cash.

Comment: Re:Haha, nobody will do this. (Score 1) 208

by demachina (#47310923) Attached to: The Simultaneous Rise and Decline of <em>Battlefield</em>

There is a pretty obvious solution to the steep decline in modern games. Its the same solution that was found to over priced, proprietary, commerical operating systems.

We need an open source gaming system. Its probably the only escape from eternal damnation to over priced, poorly designed, crap games.

Some critical issues need to addressed up front for it to work.

For starters you need to settle on an open source gaming engine. Torque3D would be one possibility, people here could probably name others. It needs to be capable, open source and multi platform, with as few licensing restrictions as possible. You need high caliber game developers, like Carmack to emraced it and work on it, with someone like Linus holding it together.

You need to develop a small number of core games based on the essential archetypes, FPS, MMORPG, Space battle/trading, racing.

You need to create councils for each game selected from game developers and excellent players who set rules, direction, maintain order and hold the game economy together.

As always if a game/council fails to satisfy their constituencey a solution is a fork but you want to ACTIVELY discourage forking when it leads primarily to fragmentation and wasted resources. You want as much wood behind one arrow as possible.

Each game needs to actively support and leverage mods and user developed content. In fact that will be the primary source of content.

The core games need to be designed for extreme longevity, its the content that needs to constantly changing and growing.

Councils need to design intelligent tournament systems and leader boards that actually put the most skilled players at the top, where they belong, not the grinders, scammers and cheats.

I'm a long time gamer who no longer plays games, because the games I loved the most died at the hands of corporate greed and stupidity. In particular they died because decisions were made by executives who were for the most part not gamers and made decisions that were all wrong.

If I could, I would probably still be playing the original EQ, the original WoW and Battlefield 2, Karkand Infantry only.

Battlefield 2, Karkand Infantry only was, in my mind the pinnacle of PVP. If you had evenly matched teams, with evenly matched gear, fighting a battle decided by 1 point there was no better adrenaline rush and it never got old. The map never changed, the rules seldom changed, the thing that constantly changed was the people playing it, their skills, their tactics and strategy. Developing huge maps like PS3 where you can never find an even fight, or in game purchases that allow the fools with the most money to win, developing massively too dense graphics, that are way to expensive to develop, require to much graphics power to run and add no FUN to the game, and adding too many gimicky weapons and gear that cause nothing but unbalanced matches, are just some examples.

If I could have kept the original EQ or WoW and just added a never ended series of new dungeons, quests gear and battlegrounds I would probably still be playing them. The first rule is you NEVER raise the level cap, because as soon as you do the game turns in to a pointless treadmill. New dungeons, gear and PVP is all a game needs to stay fresh.

I'd still be playing BF2 if there were any servers left that didn't suck.

Comment: Re:Speculation... (Score 4, Insightful) 455

by demachina (#47268277) Attached to: NADA Is Terrified of Tesla

Tesla's 3rd generation car is supposed to be a mass market vehicle that may disrupt the "automotive order" if Musk manages to build it. The giga battery factory he is looking for a home for is a critical component since it is critical to have enough affordable batteries for a mass market electric car.

Tesla today wont disrupt NADA, but Tesla in a few years very well may, they know it, so they are trying to nip it in the bud.

Comment: Re:This will hugely backfire... (Score 1) 422

by demachina (#47231647) Attached to: FWD.us: GOP Voters To Be Targeted By Data Scientists

I dont think these rich, tech executives are trying to reform illegal immigration from south of the border.

They are trying to reform immigration so they can import as many engineers as possible in to the U.S. from other countries.

You don't think most of them got rich by actually writing code did you?

They mostly get rich by hiring/funding engineers to write code for them. The more engineers they have to choose from the happier they are because they have more startups to choose from and they can suppress engineering salaries which improves profitiability and the value of their stock portfolios.

Comment: Re:Lol... (Score 3, Insightful) 329

by demachina (#46981963) Attached to: EA Ending Online Support For Dozens of Games

BF2 64 man Karkand Infantry Only probably the best PVP game ever, and I doubt it will ever be topped on the sick trajectory PVP shooters are on.

Sad to see it go, though there is only one server left. Big E, and the Big E admins suck so it was effectively dead already anyway.

All of EA's lame COD knock offs since simply don't capture what makes multiplayer PVP intense and fun, nor does COD:

A. Teams need to be evenly balanced
B. Teams need to be in a confined space so there is immediate contact
C. Needs to be some tactics and strategy but not a lot, versus aimless COD styling circling, killing and being killed
C. Weapons need to be equal, simple, skill based. No air, no armor
D. No stupid gimmicks
E. No excessively dense, expensive graphics. Simple graphics is actually better and you aren't forced in to a constant hardware upgrade just to play games that are immensly fun even if the graphics are simple. Excessive graphics also drive up costs needlessly.

If EA had just kept fixing the bugs in BF2, spent more effort controlling hacks, did new maps occassionaly, did minimal refinements, someone like Twitch promoted a competition system around it, someone provided some professionally admin'ed servers to get away from clan based bias, it would've gone on forever like Starcraft.

"Indecision is the basis of flexibility" -- button at a Science Fiction convention.

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