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Comment Re:Reliability (Score 1) 163

Still, there are obstacles. SpaceX still needs to demonstrate the ability to consistently produce and launch rockets many times a year after the June accident caused an unexpected, six-month setback, something it will do with several flights planned for the weeks ahead.

Just because it's relatively cheap to use Space X, if I have a 50-50 ( better or worse) chance that my $100 million satellite that took several years to design and build is going to get blown up, I'll pass.

So I'm guessing (and I'm more or less an interested layman here) it would depend o the cost of the payload. Even if reusable rockets turn out to be less reliable, they'd still open up new possibilities IF they're substantially cheaper. If cheaper launches become available, that opens the market up for new, less expensive types of payloads that nobody would've thought of before. If your payload costs two million dollars to build (and to build again if you lose one), you'd probably launch it with the one-million-dollars-per-launch vehicle that's three times more likely to explode. If your payload costs one BILLION dollars, you probably[*] launch with the 60 million per launch vehicle that's three times less likely to explode, because the launch costs are just 6% of your payload anyway. But the thing is, that 2 million dollar payload would not be launched AT ALL if the cheap launcher wasn't available (at least not if the payload is heavy enough so it can't be launched with 10 others on the same flight).

[*] Even that's not an automatic no-brainer decision if you're thinking of buying one hundred one-billion dollar payload launches and want to have as many dollars in orbit per million dollars expended as possible -- in that case you might launch even the expensive payloads with the cheaper launcher.

Comment Re:Data data everywhere and not a drop to think (Score 1) 366

Why measure weight? All that's needed to know whether the plane will lift off is the current amount of thrust, the current speed and its acceleration.

The plane lifts off when its lift exceeds its weight. Its *weight*, see? The airspeed (and flaps setting) determines the lift; to determine the weight, you have to, well, weigh the thing.

Comment Re: The Commit Message (Score 1) 572

And that is the whole fun point of it all: AICCU (or anything else) cannot fix network problems

It's not supposed to fix them, it's supposed to retry until they've been fixed externally. And no, you don't expect a user to "read log messages" and restart the thing manually every time the network is unavailable. A network outage is fixed where it happens, it's not supposed to break thousands of daemons downstream permanently until somebody has read their logfiles and manually restarted them like an idiot. There may not even be a user, if you think of unattended server boxes or, say, home routers running in your mom's basement. Your mom won't read log files. And she certainly doesn't want to power-cycle her internet box every time the network comes up again (or wasn't up when she switched the box on). This thing wants to be a Unix-style daemon that's supposed to support robust automation, not requiring a c00l h4xx0r type holding its hand and reading log files and typing fancy restart commands all the time to do stuff that's blatantly obvious anyway.

You should really step back for a minute and think this over and change your perspective. You were thrown into that Redhat bugzilla because you were angry because someone had made a wrong fix that DDoSed your service, without contacting you first, and apparently that anger has clouded your judgment, or so it seems.

Comment Re: The Commit Message (Score 2) 572

aiccu then crashes and it never starts again.

I may be miss-understanding something, but if a service crashes, SystemD is responsible to restart the service. In this case the service may just crash again, but that's besides the point. Why wasn't SystemD bringing a crashed service back online?

It did, after the submitter wrote Restart=always/RestartSec=10 into the service definition file. But that led to the (understandable) concern on the part of the aiccu author that when this patch was rolled out to all Fedora installations, you might have thousands of Fedora boxes out there with e.g. a wrong tunnel password in the aiccu configuration, and all those machines would then be continuously hammering the SixXs tunnel broker with rejected connection attempts. Stuff like that is one of the reasons why auto-restarting services are frowned upon. AFAIK systemd allows you to specify that a service be restarted only if it exited with one out of a specific set of exit codes and/or signals, but again, aiccu doesn't define specific exit code for specific error conditions, afaik (and I don't know whether systemd itself can perform exponential backoff for certain exit codes).

Another question is why wasn't the service registered with the event for when the network came back up? Then it could crash and stay down until the network was functioning again, instead of attempting to restart every 10 seconds.

Not all network outages are local. An upstream router or the SixXs service itself may be go down randomly. So you still have to have some strategy in the service daemon and/or the service definition to deal with the tunnel broker being unreachable.

Comment Re: The Commit Message (Score 5, Insightful) 572

There was a problem involving systemd, networking, and aiccu.

The aiccu maintainer demonstrated how systemd wasn't properly making sure that networking was up before attempting to start aiccu

No they didn't demonstrate that. The relevant thread is this one, and the short version is that the aiccu author failed to understand that the network being unavailable temporarily is quite a different failure mode than, say, the configuration file having a syntax error. In the latter case, it's OK to terminate and require user intervention, whereas in the former case, if you're a long-running daemon that's supposed to keep a tunnel open, you keep running, backing off exponentially and waiting until the network becomes available again. Or at the very least, you exit with a specific exit code so that somebody can write a wrapper script that handles this particular error correctly and implements the backing-off thing in the wrapper script, and still terminates permanently for any other error condition (at which point it's fair to ask again why you wouldn't implement the exponential backoff in the daemon itself).

This whole thing is quite independent of the init system; sysvinit will expose just the same set of issues. What's broken is the daemon, not the init system.

Comment Re:Gun-free zone? (Score 1) 1165

Right, in the world. Amongst developed nations, it's certainly number 1 in that sense, by miles and miles.

Only if you count Detroit, Baltimore, Chicago, and New York as part of any "developed nation".

Take the gun violence from those locations out of US statistics, and where would the US be?

Probably in the same position as before if you take the two or three biggest/most violent cities of those other countries out as well.

Comment Re:Worse than the space station? No. (Score 1) 684

Well, if you were one of the sailors on the first circumnavigation of the world (Magellan, 1519-22), the probability that you wouldn't come home alive was about 92%, breathable air or not. That's certainly higher than any conceivable Mars trip today would incur (unless you count in the proposed one-way mission profiles). In fact, I'm pretty sure if you make a serious and educated estimate of how likely it would be to die on such a trip and put that in a historical context, you wouldn't have had that good a chance of surviving an intercontinental sea voyage until the mid or late 18th century or so. By that time however, thousands upon thousands of people routinely made such trips, and contrary to space travellers today, not all of them did it voluntarily, and most of the others were low-paid sailors who were forced by serious economic pressure and would've had no income if they refused to participate.

Comment Re:Brussels to Sydney (Score 1) 221

I got no idea where all that came from, except possibly as an Australian Government misinformation campaign because they were having to reject too many American applicants and the Americans were getting nasty about it but I mean seriously grizzly bear versus koala bear which would you rather meet out in a forest or mountain line versus Tasmanian devil, sure the devil sounds worse, much worse but not really a problem.

Yeah, but then whenever I'd discover one of these in my room I'd have to burn the house down and be homeless afterwards, which is not so convenient in a place with so many free-running monsters.

Comment Re:Free money isn't free (Score 1) 1291

Technological progress trumps all redistribution schemes when it comes to standard of living, because the former is exponential growth, while the latter is a constant.

Who's to say you won't have technological progress once you have basic income? The question would rather be, who gets to participate and reap the benefits of that progress when there are no jobs for more and more people. And this is a real possibility, contrary to what many free-market enthusiasts think. There's almost no job that absolutely couldn't be automated. Even the job of doing the automation, and even creative jobs, might be automated some day. And you can always reduce the argument to the extreme: What happens if/when we achieve technological singularity? By then at the very latest, the concept of having to work in order to live seems absurd.

And technological progress isn't exponential, btw. The changes in the technology world from 1960 to today have been less pronounced than those between 1905 and 1960. The biggest "recent" change was probably the internet, but all in all our world isn't so much different from the one in the 1960s, whereas at the beginning of the 20th century there were no airplanes (let alone air travel for everyone), no TVs, no washers, no penicillin, no computers, almost no telephones, and not even any electricity in households.

Comment heavenly origins (Score 1) 622

Brian Booker writes at Digital Journal that carbon dating suggests the Koran, or at least portions of it, may actually be older than the prophet Muhammad himself, a finding that if confirmed could rewrite early Islamic history and shed doubt on the "heavenly" origins of the holy text.

Umm, I actually have doubts about the "heavenly" origins of anything. Did someone actually write the above in a scientific paper? What test result would have confirmed the "heavenly" origins of that book? Those researchers seem to assume that the C-14 dating period should have started the moment that Koran was "handed" to Mohammed. That would imply that this heaven/god thing makes books out of carbon fetched from living things or the upper atmosphere, at the moment it hands them down to us. That would be kind of pedestrian, wouldn't it? Shouldn't He have instant access to all the carbon resources of the universe? Like, if He made the Koran out of carbon fetched from the Martian atmosphere or from some stellar core, there would be no C-14 in that, so C-14 dating would give "infinite"/undefined results.

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