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Comment: Re:This again? (Score 1) 472

by Bruce Perens (#49598949) Attached to: New Test Supports NASA's Controversial EM Drive

OK, I will try to restate in my baby talk since I don't remember this correctly.

Given that you are accelerating, the appearance to you is that you are doing so linearly, and time dilation is happening to you. It could appear to you that you reach your destination in a very short time, much shorter than light would allow. To the outside observer, however, time passes at a different rate and you never achieve light speed.

Comment: Where we need to get to call this real (Score 1) 472

by Bruce Perens (#49596461) Attached to: New Test Supports NASA's Controversial EM Drive

Before we call this real, we need to put one on some object in orbit, leave it in continuous operation, and use it to raise the orbit by a measurable amount large enough that there would not be argument regarding where it came from. The Space Station would be just fine. It has power for experiments that is probably sufficient and it has a continuing problem of needing to raise its orbit.

And believe me, if this raises the orbit of the Space Station they aren't going to want to disconnect it after the experiment. We spend a tremendous amount of money to get additional Delta-V to that thing, and it comes down if we don't.

Comment: Re: Elon Musk (Score 1) 108

by Bruce Perens (#49582987) Attached to: Russian Cargo Spacehip Declared Lost

Obviously I am missing something, then. Please fill me in on your better information sources. Email to bruce at perens dot com if you don't want to put them on Slashdot.

It's time to start planning another trip to Lompoc. The Motel 6 was sort of yukky last time. Maybe I'll try something else. There was an official visitor observation site that I found and got into last time, but that was for the Delta, and it was on Pad 4 if I remember correctly. This one is all the way on the other side of the base on Pad 7 or 8, isn't it? There are some farm roads that might be good observation sites if they are open.

Comment: Re:Well... (Score 1) 108

by Bruce Perens (#49582029) Attached to: Russian Cargo Spacehip Declared Lost

I am not confident that the world will remain a hospitable place for life until we are ready by your standard.

Getting the resources and people there is very close to being within our technical capability. The task ourselves, if we perform it, will take care of the remaining gaps.

Creating a self-sustaining colony outside of the Earth's environment is going to need a lot of work, but it is not work that can ever be achieved on this earth. We have to actually put people in space to achieve this. Our best experience so far is with submarines. Academic research has so far yielded only farcial frauds like Biosphere II.

Comment: Re:Again? (Score 1) 141

by Bruce Perens (#49581731) Attached to: Ham Radio Fills Communication Gaps In Nepal Rescue Effort

Technically, making transceivers work when there are 30 of them in vehicles next to each other can get difficult. People wonder why you can buy a dual-band walkie talkie for $60 but the one in the police car costs much more. If it's well engineered, the one in the police car has some RF plumbing that isn't in the $60 walkie talkie.

Comment: Re:Well... (Score 1) 108

by Bruce Perens (#49581535) Attached to: Russian Cargo Spacehip Declared Lost

You do know that science isn't the only reason to go to space, don't you?

There is the issue of continuing the existence of the Human race, and whatever other life we choose to bring with us.

Planets and suns aren't sure things, you know. We sort of take ours for granted, but there is the evidence of the sky around us. And the ominous silence of a galaxy that should be filled with intelligent life...

Comment: Re: Elon Musk (Score 1) 108

by Bruce Perens (#49581487) Attached to: Russian Cargo Spacehip Declared Lost

Is anyone still taking June 7 seriously? And where is it supposed to happen now? Cape Caneveral instead of Vandenberg? I would certiainly drive down if they held it at Vandenberg. I was there for the first try on DISCOVR.

The first test was supposed to come off much earlier than May. There are both commercial launches and government ones in the way, and there was the Helium pressurization issue which put some things off schedule.

Comment: Re:Well... (Score 1) 108

by Bruce Perens (#49581411) Attached to: Russian Cargo Spacehip Declared Lost

It's said that making a mistake in manufacturing work on equipment for the Russian space program could have consequences a lot worse than just being fired.

It's true that we place more value on lives of famous astronauts lost than we place on all of those people inconveniently freezing to death because they have nowhere to sleep but our city sidewalks, etc. Nobody's holding a years-long investigation about them.

And I am totally, totally pissed off at all of the news coverage that goes to a few westerners killed on Everest compared to the 10,000 little people who got buried alive in Nepal.

But I am not sure any of this says a thing about what nation will lead in space.

Failure is more frequently from want of energy than want of capital.

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