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Comment Re:Iron Man's Suit Defies Physics -- Mostly (Score 2, Interesting) 279

Hydrogen peroxide powered rocket packs fly for around 30 seconds, because they have a specific impulse of around 125, meaning that one pound of propellant can make 125 pound-seconds of thrust, meaning that it takes about two pounds of propellant for every second you are in the air. Mass ratios are low for anything strapped to a human, so the exponential nature of the rocket equation can be safely ignored.

A pretty hot (both literally and figuratively) bipropellant rocket could manage about twice the specific impulse, and you could carry somewhat heavier tanks, but two minutes of flight on a rocket pack is probably about the upper limit with conventional propellants.

However, an actual jet pack that used atmospheric oxygen could have an Isp ten times higher, allowing theoretical flights of fifteen minutes or so. Here, it really is a matter of technical development, since jet engines have thrust to weight ratios too low to make it practical. There is movement on this technical front, but it will still take a while.

John Carmack

Comment Re:duh (Score 1) 740

So, you go to a lot of trouble to defend the sig which pissed someone off -- but your sig is now gone. What was it? It seems odd to be so willing to defend it and then deep six it at the same time.

To your last point, yes, anyone who believes that the US was complicit in 9/11 is an idiot, regardless of how many people share the delusion. Although I suspect most of the people who profess to hold this belief are nothing more than trolls looking to stir something up.

On the points you made about the situation at the end of WWII: what I've read about the history of the time confirms all of your points except the one about our ships being able to get close enough to shell Japan without response -- that doesn't sound right, and it also happens to be the one piece you failed to find a reference for when pushed. Where did you read that? Regardless, your initial point is right -- it was unnecessary to drop the bombs on Japan and the decision appears to have had more to do with concerns about the Soviet Union post-WWII.

Comment This is lame (Score 3, Insightful) 808

Given that Blizzard is using the trademarks "StarCraft" and "WarCraft" in this very specific market (realtime computer strategy games), their claim that "FreeCraft" infringes on their copyright is reasonable and very likely winnable in court.

So, no problem, just rename FreeCraft to a unique name that clearly isn't derivative of Blizzard's product. And don't be mad that they asked you to do this, because they have the right and obligation to protect their copyrights.

On the other hand, unless you've physically ripped code or content out of StarCraft or WarCraft and put it in your game, any claim that your game is "too similar" to theirs seems absurd and almost certainly has no basis in copyright or trademark law. If you ignore them on that issue, then they are almost certain to go away.

And if they don't go away nicely, the resulting outrage over their persecution of the open source community would almost certainly force them to go away ashamedly.

But if you just cave in, and you fail to stand up for your rights when presented with this sort of threat, then you are certain to lose your rights.

If a person asks you to get out of his seat, you move. If a bully asks you to give up YOUR seat, you fight.

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