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Comment "Strangely territorial" my ass (Score 1) 505

I'm only on my phone about an hour a day. Does everyone else get dibs on the other 23? How about tapping off of my power line? Free water from my garden hose? Sit on my porch and read my newspaper before I go and grab it? Raid my fridge whenever they're hungry? Shit in my toilets when I'm not using them? You pinkos want mobile internet? You pay for it like everyone else does.

Comment Re:3 problems (Score 2) 167

Problem 4: today's scientists don't have the street cred of the WW2 generation. Those guys went from zero to (many) operational weapons systems in six years or less, and by many objective measures Knew What They Were Doing, and millions of people in uniform and out saw it with their own eyes. Today's average global warming scientist, pure mathematician, or theoretical physicist can only point to publications and slide shows for his accomplishments. Not the same gravitas with the average Joe, and not even the same gravitas with technical types like myself who get their flu shots and don't subscribe to young earth creationism.

Comment Re:advantages of metric (Score 0) 1387

Explain how. How often do you find yourself having to convert units at all in techinical work at all? A programming example: If you're using double precision floating point, you have 17 significant decimal digits. Once you pick a distance unit (inch, foot, meter, kilometer), you shouldn't [have to] do any conversions, that just invites programming errors, whether you try to jump from inches to miles or meters to kilometers. So sorry, you introduce exactly zero improvement by deciding to use meters over inches or feet in your program. Same thing for software that interacts with hardware. A rocketry example: If everyone uses lbf-seconds rather than N-m for impulse commands, it doesn't matter. It all gets converted into milliseconds and volts when it goes to the control valves and servos. There is absolutely nothing to be gained by choosing metric over American units (or vice versa).

Comment Re:Does it really take so much computing power? (Score 1) 861

Trouble is, you tend to have to use realtime friendly CPU's when you do this stuff. So things like pipeline optimization, predictive branching, cache management, etc, tend to not always be present on CPUs that are designed for determinism. So realistically, I would not be surprised if the heaviest computing in that thing is done on a single core 500MHz-1GHz CPU, and the rockets aren't probably running anything fancier than a 100 MHz single core machine either. They may or may not have memory management in hardware (I know some higher end 1GHz SBCs I've worked with don't, they just have a single flat address space).

It's still way overkill for what it needs to do, but in order to get the cycle times down under the 10 msec mark (order of magnitude), you have to pick and chose what language you work in (anything with non determinism like Java or something with a heap like the C++ run time may well be a no-no), and you have to pick and choose which algorithms you implement.

The latest-and-greatest randomized algorithm you see in IEEE may not be suitable for realtime implementation because while the average time is 1msec, there exist execution paths which take 15 msec to run. So you're safer going with the sub-optimal thing that executes in 5 msec every time.

Comment Re:Too bad... (Score 1) 861

The PLO/PA under Arafat made the choices that lead to that situation. Go back and read through the mid-late 90's history of the conflict, and especially what went on in 2000. It's almost entirely a one-sided history of violent Palestinian provocation followed by increasingly violent Israeli response, not the other way around.

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