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Comment Re:Seems mostly like a left wing echo chamber (Score 1) 81

Oh, the article obviously very biassed, no question about it. But I like the fact that the author doesn't try to pretend she's not biased or writing in a "balanced" way. It makes it all the more believable to me. But again: it could also be completely made up for all I know, although she's dropping a lot of names of people that were present and specifics that should make it easy to debunk things in that case.

Comment Re: Seems mostly like a left wing echo chamber (Score 1) 81

If the way that Milo guy is portrayed in the article is in any way accurate, he doesn't appear to espouse any viewpoints at all. He just enjoys trolling, including trolling people into believing that what he writes are actually his viewpoints.

Of course Twitter may, like Facebook, help/hurt/hide/quash certain trending topics etc, but I don't think this person's case a particularly good example of how it's ruled by some kind of elite that does not like any dissent.

Comment Re: drone ship landings require a lot less fuel? (Score 1) 101

I don't need to stand by the rotation theory. However, the 2.5 degrees that the Earth rotates are about equivalent to the downrange distance.

The first stage is going about 1/5 of the target LEO orbital velocity at separation. While you might well model the trajectory as a parabola over flat ground, given the lack of fuel I would expect that SpaceX puts a lot more care into their trajectory. So far I've failed to attract the attention of the person responsible for Flight Club, the most trusted modeling of SpaceX flights, but I'll message him directly.

Comment Re: drone ship landings require a lot less fuel? (Score 1) 101

Well, Alastair, you should probably not get snotty and ad-hominem, unless you want me to comment on how a one-time sci-fi author and the Unix guy at Dish doesn't really have more authority than the random person one might find in the SpaceX group on Reddit.

It happens there are a few people over there who are rocketry professionals, have the math, and have followed SpaceX long enough. So, sure, their opinion can indeed be trusted.

So far, we have a suggestion from one of the lesser folks there that raising the apogee takes advantage of the Earth's rotation. We'll see if we get the attention of the right people.

Comment Re:Oh noes (Score 4, Interesting) 180

I received one of these emails from Verizon, which for $59.99 "is a great opportunity to enhance your Fios experience with faster Wi-Fi speeds."

It isn't so much the money or speed I worry about as the ability to control the router's advanced settings for server ports, etc. that I have now in the "old" router.

I couldn't find any detailed information about the new router. I am seriously worried that the advanced settings will be dumbed down or made unavailable, so their outsourced customer service won't have to be concerned with technical stuff and thus require less training. Maybe the monthly fee for the old router is a red flag that this is the case, since they may need customer support with more training. I don't want to buy the new router and then be screwed unless I upgrade to an expensive "business" account. I doubt they will let me go back to the old router.

Does anyone know the specs for the new router?

Comment Re: drone ship landings require a lot less fuel? (Score 1) 101

It seems to be a common misconception that orbital mechanics somehow knows when you are in orbit and does not work otherwise. But that is as silly as saying that relativity only works near light speed. These things always work regardless of speed, it's just that their effects are macroscopic at greater speeds.

Comment Re: drone ship landings require a lot less fuel? (Score 1) 101

Here's an illustration of the boost-back to RTLS trajectory. You can see that it very definitely goes up. And to prove from observation, you can actually see where the two trajectories separate in photos from yesterday's launch. It's a rather dim curl up, and another continuing East, in Jason Ruck's photo and John Kraus's photo.

At the speed of stage separation, they rocket isn't going fast enough to stay in orbit, but it is definitely in the regime where orbital mechanics has a macroscopic effect. If you think about it, this is going to be the case at some reasonable fraction of orbital velocity.

Comment The perspective of a 3D animation professional (Score 5, Interesting) 302

This is just like the way people whined that color film had ruined the medium, and the ones before them who whined about talkies and yearned for the days of silent films.

I started at the NYIT Computer Graphics Laboratory in 1981 and left Pixar in 2000. These days I produce or am on screen once in a while.

While I was at NYIT they weren't story oriented, and thus all you see of them is demos. Pixar, on the other hand, always put story first. We knew that we could not make a film stand up on effects alone.

Today, a good 3D animation house can make absolutely any scene they like. And thus there isn't anything special about doing so. It's there if it needs to be there to tell the story, and not otherwise.

Comment Re:Well, I _wanted_ to like her. (Score 2) 175

and says that nuclear energy is, "dirty, dangerous and expensive, and should be precluded on all of those counts", when the actual data shows just the opposite.

If you take into account all of the government subsidies, including covering the industry's uninsurable risks, I'm not sure whether at least the cost argument holds.

You forgot that it's the only form of energy that's currently regulated to include all of externalities in its cost.

No, since for nuclear a bunch of externalities are covered by the government at a rate that is below what the market is willing to offer (since the market doesn't want to cover them at all).

For a fair comparison, you'd need to require coal to catch everything (CO2, sulphur, other toxins, more radioactive isotopes than a nuclear plant, etc)
  from all chimneys, transport and store that securely for hundreds of years.

I doubt Jill Stein is very much in favour of coal fired plants.

And despite that, nuclear is still competitive and causes many orders of magnitude less deaths.

Competitive with massive government subsidies, yes. Of course, coal also gets lots of subsidies.

Comment Re:Well, I _wanted_ to like her. (Score 5, Interesting) 175

She's in favor of "homeopathic medicine",

That seems to be a little simplistic, given that she apparently even got the Green Party to remove all mentions of homeopathy from their platform. That said, pure placebo's (such as homeopathy, VR and even the colour of pills) can have their use either separately from (in case of e.g. a hypochondriac) or in combination with regular treatment.

and says that nuclear energy is, "dirty, dangerous and expensive, and should be precluded on all of those counts", when the actual data shows just the opposite.

If you take into account all of the government subsidies, including covering the industry's uninsurable risks, I'm not sure whether at least the cost argument holds.

Furthermore, she wants "a moratorium on GMOs", which wikipedia states, "There is a scientific consensus[147][148][149][150] that currently available food derived from GM crops poses no greater risk to human health than conventional food".

While she indeed argues against it because of safety arguments, there are plenty of other reasons why many people are against GMOs. Just look at the majority of comments on the Slashdot story regarding one of the "GMOs are safe" studies.

I REALLY want to vote third party, but we need some third party candidates who are not anti-science crackpots.

Bashing using arguments that are either easily refuted, or at the very least less clear cut than presented, is anti-science. Name-calling while posting as AC is just silly.

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