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Comment Re:Nice Job China (Score 1) 119

You cite an industry that has oversight by the FAA for that reason, yes an airliner is a pretty powerful thing too, in the wrong hands it can take down a skyscraper. A rocket is a COMPLETELY different thing - when they go wrong there isn't some guy at the controls who can try and avert a school or a shopping mall, yes they have (most have) command destruct capability, but things can go wrong there too. A large booster loaded with solid rocket fuel, cryogenic fuels, or hypergolic fuels is not something your local fire department is prepared to deal with. Airlines and Space are completely different - airlines make money and are a necessary part of the global economy - the country went into gridlock after 9/11 when the airspace was shutdown across the globe. You know what happened when the Challenger exploded - shuttle ops were stopped, an investigation ensued, it was 32 months before we went back to space. Something like that happens to SpaceX they'll probably go bankrupt

Comment Re:Nice Job China (Score 1) 119

fair enough - but this administration dug the hole, tossed the coffin in, and threw dirt on top of it. I guess I have a different perspective on it growing up in the shadow of rockets and going to school with the kids of genuine rocket scientists. It's honestly what made me choose engineering as a career and I was lucky enough to work on the expendable side of things back in the late 80's. I personally believe that space exploration is one of the very few areas that government SHOULD be doing - only the government can shoulder the huge liability of launching rockets and putting people and hardware into space. I applaud the efforts of SpaceX and Scaled Composites and others but I believe it will all come crashing down with the first major accident involving a big loss of property or worse life and the public will cry "why didn't the government protect us from these evil private corporations" unless the governemnt is prepared to indemnify these guys against lawsuits and provide sustained subsidies to keep it going I just don't see how it is a sustainable privatized pursuit. Its the same reasone why there aren't flying cars all over the place, people building their own nuclear reactors. Some things really are better handled by the government (not many but some) - I've seen several large rockets explode with my own eyes, its pretty damn sobering thing to witness - I don't really want one crashing into my kids high school.....

Comment Nice Job China (Score 4, Interesting) 119

Having grown up on the Florida space coast watching Saturn V's and Space Shuttles since I was 6 - I can see the pride and excitement in the faces of the astronauts and spectators and I remember what that felt like. It's hard for me to not be a little envious. Have we "advanced" now that Obama Administration killed our manned space program (after promising not to BTW) ? I don't know.... Despite the great success of SpaceX I am skeptical that commercialized space will ever make enough money to survive without government subsidies, only time will tell. But congrats to China for a job well done, enjoy it while you can !

Comment flawed idea (Score 1) 191

While the students may become knowledgeable in a subject I doubt many employers would give Joey with his Masters degree from Udacity a job over someone with a Masters degree or even a Bachelors degree from an established mainstream university or college. If the applicant had experience as well, possibly, but not a new grad.

Comment Re:Explain the mind of a genius? (Score 5, Insightful) 414

I have to agree with your comment about learning DE, I failed differential equations the first time I took the class (a D-grade) I was taking engineering course work at the time that required them - and what they actaully "meant" clicked in an electrical networks class - when I took the class again (my university had a 1 time grade forgiveness policy) I got an A - it seemed trivial and simple the second time around in a different context. I general I have mathematics makes mroe sense to me personally when I can relate it to a real world problem - Mathematics taught as rote learning is a horrible thing - some of us can't do it that way....

Comment Re:Bad example (Score 2) 350

although if you are going to drive a car that gets such dismal gas mileage as a Lambo then living in an oil rich country is probably a good move - come to think of it when I was going to college the first Lamborghini Countach I ever saw was being driven by some rich kid from Saudi Arabia

Comment the end is near.... (Score 1) 176

I read the challenge areas, basically it's all the things that the guys working at NASA should be doing, if the Federal Government hadn't slashed their already inadequate budget to the point where it is now nothing more than a bunch of bureaucrats doing time.... So now some organization called the "Lunar and Planetary Institute" a division of "Universities Space Research Association" - to quote: "USRA engages the creativity and authoritative expertise of the research community to develop and deliver sophisticated, forward-looking solutions to Federal agencies and other customers - on schedule and within budget." ... wants free ideas - must not be getting any good ones from their "authoritative experts in the research

Comment hello self licking ice cream cone (Score 3, Interesting) 301

I read the headline for this story and laughed - it doesn't matter how much faster my computers or networks get - Our IT department just installs more and more virus scanners, software maintenance tools, firewalls, monitoring tools ,etc.... Each computer I get has more CPU cores and memory and faster graphics and they are able to do less and less and take longer and longer to boot. I figure before too long I'll have to go back to my old TI-30 calculator and some engineering graph paper and I'll be equal in efficiency to my computer once I factor in all the time I spend waiting for it to get around to sparing .5% of the 12 CPU cores to run the actual software I need to use....

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