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The Internet

SpaceX Wants Permission To Test Satellite Internet 98

An anonymous reader writes: SpaceX has filed documents with the FCC asking for permission to begin testing a project to serve internet access from space. "The plan calls for launching a constellation of 4,000 small and cheap satellites that would beam high-speed Internet signals to all parts of the globe, including its most remote regions." This follows news that Facebook and Google had stepped back their efforts in that arena. SpaceX could prove to be a better fit for the project, given that they need only rely on themselves for launching satellites into orbit. "The satellites would be deployed from one of SpaceX's rockets, the Falcon 9. Once in orbit, the satellites would connect to ground stations at three West Coast facilities. The purpose of the tests is to see whether the antenna technology used on the satellites will be able to deliver high-speed Internet to the ground without hiccups."
Mars

Arab Mars Probe Planned For 2020 190

SpankiMonki sends word that the United Arab Emirates has announced plans to launch a Mars mission in July, 2020. They want to send a probe (named "al-Amal",or "Hope") that will orbit the Red Planet for several years. It will analyze the Martian atmosphere, observing clouds and dust storms to help scientists figure out how water gradually escaped from Mars over a long time scale. [A]fter being inserted into an elliptical 55-hour orbit in the first quarter of 2021, Hope will carry out its nominal two-year science mission at altitudes ranging between 22,000 to 44,000 kilometers. From there, the mission will investigate how the lower and upper levels of the Martian atmosphere are connected. One goal is to create the first global picture of how the Martian atmosphere changes throughout the day and between seasons.
Crime

Gen. Petraeus To Be Sentenced To Two Years Probation and Fine 94

An anonymous reader writes: Petraeus, a now-retired U.S. Army General, has already agreed to plead guilty to a criminal misdemeanor charge of unauthorized removal and retention of classified material. As part of the agreement with prosecutors filed in March, the government will not seek any prison time. Instead, Petraeus will agree to pay a $40,000 fine and receive two years of probation, according to court documents. The recommendations are not binding on the federal judge who will preside at the hearing Thursday afternoon in Charlotte.

Comment Re:Couldn't they have spent that money better? (Score 1) 204

almost certain they are going to ask the state for some kind of bailout

Um, no it really isn't almost certain the state will bail them out since that doesn't really happen. And if they default on their bonds, why would that affect surrounding communities?

And I am curious when "investing" became a guaranteed profit and no chance of losing your money? Isn't it supposed to carry some risk?

Comment Re:Didn't work for Philadelphia (Score 1) 204

Both of those WiFi services were free, as in supported by tax dollars and really easy to throw on the chopping block when most people pay for a separate internet connection at home and use cell service elsewhere, so no real demand for it.

Comment Re:Didn't work for Philadelphia (Score 1) 204

So it will become mismanaged very quickly — like all collectively-owned things.

Holy Over-Generalization, Batman! Sigh, I could try to argue but guessing "examples" or "facts" from the "real world" aren't really going to convince you.

Comment Re:I don't think hydrogen makes sense (Score 1) 293

Well it's a 40 minute recharge time. And if you go by federal laws which require truck drivers to take a 30 minute break within the firs 8 hours of their maximum 11 hour drives, then the requirement to recharge doesn't really seem like a big deal.

And it's great that you can drive for 16 hours just about straight through, but put a wife and two kids in the car and good luck with that.

Comment Re:I don't think hydrogen makes sense (Score 1) 293

Really? Everyone you know does trips over 5-6 hours (300 miles) only stopping for 5 minutes at a time? You must not know anyone who does long trips with kids, wives or dogs who all need to stop way more than that and spend more time doing it.

Comment Re:Wake me when they solve the infrastructure prob (Score 1) 293

The biggest problem I see is that we already have a pretty good infrastructure for delivering electricity with almost none of the complexity or drawbacks of dragging cylinders of gas around. Electric is already here and viable as Tesla is proving. As soon as I can get a Tesla for less than $50k I am all over it.

Comment Re:It's The Parts Count (Score 1) 293

It probably also has something to do with inflated executive salaries too, since those cost money just as UAW salaries do. There was a pretty big stink when Dimler bought Chrysler when the german workers were worried they would start paying the Daimler execs the same ridiculous salaries Chrysler did/does.

And american car quality took way too long to come close to import quality/reliability standards for it to make a difference and that had nothing to do with pensions or labor costs.

Comment Re:This is a great idea (Score 1) 363

I actually bet more potential EV owners are put out by the cost of the car initially than anything else. I always hear about long trip anxiety but they have these places where you can go and rent a gas car pretty cheaply for long trips. I have even heard of people doing that so they don't put miles on their regular car! Crazy.

But when you can buy a reliable used car for $10K it's hard for me to justify going out and dropping 30K for a new EV car.

Comment Re:Not ideal (Score 1) 363

Oh, you're right, you found a situation that it isn't ideal for. Forget it, just throw in the towel, it won't work for this guy to go blow money in Las Vegas so let's just forget the whole idea.

And 220lbs? I bet you have relatives heavier than that so subtract one passenger.

And what next-gen rechargable are we waiting for that is going to be perfect for this use case?

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