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Submission + - Ask Slashdot: Anachronistic computational devices? 1

tgibson writes: For some time I have been thinking about designing and delivering a one- or two-credit course on the use of computational devices that are either no longer used or are given short shrift due to technological advances. Examples include the abacus, slide rule, and astrolabe. More exotic examples might include the Antikythera mechanism, the E6B flight computer or even archaeoastronomical sites. I would also like to have some of the simpler, unavailable tools 3D-printed for the students and incorporate them into activities.

Although I have been accumulating a list of such devices and other background material, I'm sure there are many "must-haves" I am unaware of. What anachronistic computational devices would be well-suited for such a course?

Comment Re:threatened to nuke America (Score 1) 192

The Tsar Bomba TEST yielded 50MT. That was because it was missing it's outer uranium boost blanket that would've made it dirty as sin but a full 100MT.

I quote:

The initial three-stage design was capable of yielding approximately 100 Mt, but it would have caused too much nuclear fallout and the plane delivering the bomb would not have enough time to escape the explosion. To limit fallout, the third stage and possibly the second stage had a lead tamper instead of a uranium-238 fusion tamper ...

Comment Re:Why only one (Score 1) 140

The oft-overlooked part of this is all of the infrastructure needed to manage the sats once in orbit. There are only so many earth stations and only so much TDRSS satellite bandwidth available.

Also, by the time a satellite is finished, technology has usually outpaced the onboard systems and made it illogical to duplicate the original sat.

Comment Re:60% of the earth's surface is water... (Score 2) 99

> When the planet's surface is 60% water the meteors are going to hit water 60% of the time.

Not exactly true. There seems to be a relationship between the fall rate and latitude.

Also, the northern hemisphere has proportionally more land than the southern hemisphere (68% vs 32%), you'd expect about twice as many NH impacts on land than in the SH.

Comment You could make toast with the cable (Score 1) 1

2500 mAh in 15 mins over USB-C? Just accounting for the charge and assuming 100% efficiency, 2500 mAh in 15 mins is an average current of 10 Amps. That's even optimistic given that the charge profile is usually high current at the start and lower current towards the end. USB-C says it maxes out at 3 Amps.

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