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+ - NASA to crash twin spacecraft into the moon this afternoon.->

Submitted by flablader
flablader writes: After a highly successful 14 month mission, the Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory mission's twin spacecraft will impact the lunar surface this afternoon just before 5:30 PM Eastern time. After completing their primary and extended science missions flawlessly, the spacecraft are nearly out of fuel and cannot perform any further science activities. Details at
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+ - MRO, Curiosity to play a vital role in MSL landing->

Submitted by flablader
flablader writes: Due to light-time delays and the power requirements to transmit from the surface of Mars to the Earth, NASA's Curiosity Rover will be unable to send the majority of its science data back to earth without the assistance of Odyssey, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, and the planned MAVEN orbiter. The two orbiters already circling Mars will be responsible for relay landing information to Earth since the lander will not be able to do so in a timely manner itself. Interestingly enough the Odyssey orbiter just recovered from a safe mode as discusses in this article.
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Comment: Re:a couple of thoughts (Score 1) 42

by flablader (#37371538) Attached to: NASA's Twin GRAIL Craft On Their Way To the Moon

Another expense might be making the GRAIL orbiters dual-string (duplicate almost everything on a single orbiter, two main computers, two batteries, etc). According to GRAIL is single-string because that matches the mission reliability requirements.

Also - I was on the GRAIL development team and I'm currently working GRAIL mission operations, so I'd also be employed for a little while longer if we repeated this experiment at Mars.

Comment: Re:Have you tried this thing called 'Google'? (Score 1) 117

by flablader (#31584800) Attached to: Recommendations For C++/OpenGL Linux Tutorials?

As OP explicitly said C++, I have to wonder, are they looking for an Object Oriented type of framework? If so, GLUT doesn't fit the bill, it's a pure C, function callback oriented framework. It could be used in an OO like manner, but it isn't OO itself.

The only OO framework I've found for use with OpenGL is FLTK, but my experience with OpenGL is quite limited. What other OO frameworks are available and worth the effort to learn?

Comment: Re:Nurse != Secretary (Score 1) 406

by flablader (#28215331) Attached to: Hospital Turns Away Ambulances When Computers Go Down

If you can get to an ER in less time then the Ambulance would take to arrive you are ahead of the game anyhow.

Definitely not true. A stroke victim that goes to the wrong hospital (handling a stroke requires a special set of equipment and skills that not every hospital has) will have to wait for EMS to transport them to the right hospital. Now they've got the time it takes to transport them to the wrong hospital as well as the time it takes to transport them again to the right hospital working against them.

That's typically true no matter where you live. Emergency response times suck universally.

Citation? I've been in a couple automobile accidents and EMS was present within a few minutes. All depends on where you live.

If you can safely move the person you call 911 and start driving. The ambulance can meat you halfway if things are that bad.

Interesting, don't know if it's done or how EMS responds to this.

Comment: Re:Nurse != Secretary (Score 1) 406

by flablader (#28214457) Attached to: Hospital Turns Away Ambulances When Computers Go Down

Yes, I know how expensive an ambulance ride is. It's all absurdly priced, but I guess you avoid the whole billing issue if you die before you even get there. This approach does come with its own set of drawbacks...

It's all a calculated risk, one way or the other. Most people don't understand all of the reasons for taking the ambulance, and so make this decision without all of the info.

Comment: Re:Nurse != Secretary (Score 1) 406

by flablader (#28213943) Attached to: Hospital Turns Away Ambulances When Computers Go Down

Fair enough. Perhaps I should have said call 911 instead of an ambulance. Still might not address your point, and unfortunately I don't know the answer to your question...

This is definitely something to consider if you have the choice on where to live (I recognize that a number of people don't have that choice). I still picked a rural area.

Comment: Re:Nurse != Secretary (Score 1) 406

by flablader (#28213563) Attached to: Hospital Turns Away Ambulances When Computers Go Down

That's what "Medical Charts" are for. Used to be every patient had a chart on a clipboard at the end of the bed.

Until the hospital is fined/sued for violating the patient's rights under HIPPA by leaving their medical records our for all to see...

I'll readily admit that storing the records in a computer isn't much safer, but it's less visible to most people.

Comment: Re:Nurse != Secretary (Score 3, Informative) 406

by flablader (#28213401) Attached to: Hospital Turns Away Ambulances When Computers Go Down
If you had no idea what's going on, you call an ambulance; you do NOT drive someone to the hospital yourself. Here's why:
- You don't know if whatever is happening is going to get worse and if it does, you don't have the equipment on hand to deal with it.
- Not all hospitals are equal. The closest hospital may not be equipped to handle your emergency. My wife used to work in one such hospital and people have died because someone drove them in instead of calling an ambulance. Hospitals are rated by what kind of emergencies they can handle; some don't have a <insert specialist here> on call 24 hours a day...
- You don't know the current wait time at the hospital, the EMTs in the ambulance do.
- You can't communicate with the hospital to let them know what's coming, the EMTs in the ambulance can.

Comment: Re:Firefox memory leak (Score 1) 596

by flablader (#27931101) Attached to: How often do you reboot your primary computer?

I could be wrong, (and I don't know much about mailman) but...

The lock being left behind is generally a file that mailman has created in the file system. Once the file is created, the kernel has no business deleting it. It should close the file and reclaim the file handle when mailman closes, but it shouldn't delete the file. Ideally, mailman would create the file in a section of the file system that is cleared on reboot (/tmp?), so this wouldn't be a problem...

Top Ten Things Overheard At The ANSI C Draft Committee Meetings: (2) Thank you for your generous donation, Mr. Wirth.