Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

Comment: Re:Is this an achievement? (Score 1) 42

by hey! (#47519351) Attached to: Autonomous Sea-Robot Survives Massive Typhoon

Well, you are unlikely to be the *only* one who doesn't think this is all that impressive, because you're unlikely to be the only one who didn't read the article or looking up the device on the company's website.

The robot in question is designed to capture energy from surface waves for propulsion. So it is not a deep submersible, it waddles along a six meters below the surface, tethered to a streamlined surface buoy that it drags along and uses to capture wave energy. Making it through a major storm is a significant proof-of-concept for such a system.

Comment: Re:I wonder how long it would've taken NASA? (Score 5, Informative) 43

by WindBourne (#47518097) Attached to: SpaceX Releases Video of Falcon Rocket's Splashdown
Actually, I would agree, except for where you claim that SpaceX has done nothing new.
For starters, NOBODY has taken anything as large as the first stage to space and landed it under power on earth. This is absolutely a first.
Secondly, they have the cheapest launches going. Why? Because they automated heavily. That has not been done.
Thirdly, no escape system has been a pusher system ever before (though boeing is attempting it as well).
Fourth, no capsule has landed under power on earth. If he succeeds at that, it will be a first.
Fifth. nobody has successfully launched a rocket with 28 engines. If Falcon heavy succeeds, it will be a first.
Sixth, nobody has built a full-flow staged combustion engine using methane. SpaceX is working on just that, with raptor.

Now, do not get me wrong. I support NASA, as does most ppl from SpaceX. BUT, to claim that SpaceX is not doing anything innovative, is just as wrong as those that knock NASA.

Comment: Bicycles and Jets (Score 4, Insightful) 198

by bill_mcgonigle (#47517995) Attached to: 'Just Let Me Code!'

If you want to bring three hundred people half way around the world, don't try to do it on your bicycle.

If you enjoy bicycling far more than piloting a jumbo jet, then you should be in bicycling, not commercial aviation.

What, you don't like jumbo jets and nobody wants to pay you to ride a bicycle? Maybe you should invent the hyperloop or manage a B&B instead.

Comment: Re:a question.... (Score 1) 55

by Rei (#47516505) Attached to: Oso Disaster Had Its Roots In Earlier Landslides

That's not what everything I've read about the disaster has said. The mountain has gone through cycles - whenever it collapses, the river gets moved away, and the slides stop for a time, but eventually it wears away the footings enough that it falls again. They'd even tried to prevent landslides there by manually shoring up the base back in the 1960s, but it just flowed over their reinforcements.

The waterlogging of the soil is also a necessary factor too, mind you - not saying otherwise. :)

Comment: Re:Great (Score 1) 159

by bill_mcgonigle (#47516457) Attached to: Firefox 33 Integrates Cisco's OpenH264

I always wanted a backdoor in my browser.

I really did try searching for how this plugin retrieval works but must not have use the right search terms.

To stay license compliant *AND* safe, Mozilla should sign the modules as they become available, and Firefox should only download them if both Mozilla's and Cisco's signatures verify.

That being done, there's very little difference between Mozilla shipping the code to you as part of a Firefox update and having the browser fetch it afterwards.

But if Mozilla is _only_ trusting Cisco's signature, then, yeah, wow, holy cow, back a truck into it.

Links welcome.

Comment: Re:a question.... (Score 1) 55

by Rei (#47516433) Attached to: Oso Disaster Had Its Roots In Earlier Landslides

I had paperbark birch seeds, which are also pretty water tolerant (though not as much as river birch), but none sprouted - ironically I think the seeds were too wet when I stratified them (same with my maples). Isn't river birch (B. nigra) a warm-weather birch species? I've got some cuttings of random local birches from a neighbor but I have no clue whether any of them are water tolerant enough to take swampy ground. Also birches don't usually get that tall so I don't know how expansive of a root system they'll put down. The abundant local species B. nana (dwarf birch) grows (nay, volunteers) readily here almost anywhere that sheep don't graze, but it's just a shrub, I doubt it'd do the trick (though it's probably better than just grass). It can take wet soil, although not totally swampy conditions.

For the wetter areas I also have about a dozen or so western redcedar seedlings - they're not as swamp-tolerant as dawn redwood and western recedar, but they're still reportedly quite tolerant of wet or even waterlogged soils, and they should be more cold/wind hardy than those two (wind is actually the big issue, it doesn't really get that cold here). I've also got a number of other pacific northwest trees with varying degrees of standing water tolerance. Oh, and a species or two of tasmanian mountain eucalyptus (don't remember which ones) that tolerate fairly swampy ground and should at least stand a fighting chance against our winds.

Basically, I'm just going to plant a ton of stuff and see what survives. ;)

One plus is that where the ground is persistently wet and at landslide risk, it is slowly flowing water, it's not standing. It's constantly replaced by fresh, cold ground-filtered water, so there's probably not as much risk of root rot as might be common otherwise. But there's still the oxygen issue. That and the damned sheep, but I'm working to fix that issue once and for all...

Comment: Re:a question.... (Score 1) 55

by Rei (#47514829) Attached to: Oso Disaster Had Its Roots In Earlier Landslides

To be fair, if you look at the scale of that thing, what fell is far deeper than tree roots are going to go.

There was a landslide on my land a few years ago... actually just 50-100 meters from where I'm getting ready to build my house (but the terrain is different, that's a groundwater-infiltrated glacial till-underlain marsh while my house site is basalt bedrock). It's weird looking at pictures of this giant slide, how much it looks like a 20x bigger version of my little one, from the smooth, rimmed conchoidal scarp to the river-damming piles of debris at the bottom. In my case, there were no trees, but there was grass. The grass managed to hold it for a while... but not forever. The roots just don't run deep enough. In my case, the solution (in progress) is surely just to plant water-tolerant trees (here's to hoping that dawn redwood and swamp cypress can survive in Iceland...). But what sort of trees could anchor such a massive slope as the Oso one? I know a lot of desert trees like mesquite can have super-deep root systems, but they wouldn't grow in Washington.

All programmers are playwrights and all computers are lousy actors.

Working...