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Comment Re:massive parallel processing=limited application (Score 1) 38

With a multiuser, multitasking OS you can have 25 different unrelated processes running on something with 25 cores. Or you could have 25 threads in a dataflow arrangement where each is a consumer of what the last just produced. Or you could go over the members of an array or matrix 25 members at a time with the same transformation. Some things are serial, but there are plenty of ways more cores can actually be used.

Comment Re:SystemD? (Score 1) 538

This is why I use FreeBSD. People at work think I'm the Linux guru but I'm not. It's just close enough to BSD that I can get most things working with a bit of google-fu.

Do you want a NAT router with a DHCP server that also handles mail, DNS and FTP? Okay, give me about a half hour with a bare box. Add 5 minutes for traffic graphs delivered via MRTG and Apache. Another 10 minutes and you'll have IPv6 via a tunnel broker. All on a minimal platform using BSD.

Of course you can do that with Linux too, but I've been doing BSD for two decades now and can do it in my sleep.

I use Windows 7 as my desktop because work requires AD, AV, Checkpoint VPN, Domino Notes mail (I'm the admin.) and other programs that really just work there. But any special tasks I just request a VM, they are always surprised when I ask for just 1 CPU and 512MB of RAM. The Windows guys just don't understand how much you can get done with BSD in a small footprint.

Comment Re:As did all the others. (Score 1) 150

A design like Airlander 10 is fundamentally a lot more resistant to the common problems that plague blimps during landing, such as susceptability to winds. It has less inherent lift, a smaller cross section, and more ability to anchor itself down with its fans. However, something clearly did not function correctly here. A blimp should never nose down like that. Either lift or thrust was for some reason configured wrong.

Comment Re:Protection (Score 1) 127

Right, so they're going to reengineer every last subcomponent of every last part to withstand cryogenic temperatures, specifically for production in the tiny volumes needed in the space industry? Just for the inconvenience of reusing an upper stage?

Again: contrary to would-be-rocketeer imaginations, launch costs are not the be-all end-all of expenses when it comes to space. Engineering and low-volume production is killer. Mission designers always heavily stress TRL (Technology Readiness Level) of all components, as it's such a key determiner of mission cost. If any plan you propose involves "just reengineer everything", you do not have a plan.

Comment Re:I don't get it (Score 1, Insightful) 127

What you need is: Oxygen, Radiation shielding, Water, Food, Power and some gear.

Yes, it's totally that simple! The ISS has hundreds of thousands of parts, but only because congress insisted on adding thousands of Machines That Go Ping for no good reason. And random objects totally love being submerged in liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen. And empty tanks are totally easy to haul all the way to orbit when pre-loaded with fittings and jackets and extra tanks. And building things in space (including bloody *welding*) is such a nothing job that totally costs nothing!

Meanwhile, in the real world...

The tanks will serve as basic habitats etc., you could grow food (wasn't this successfull?) in one of them to replenish your oxygen supply.

((Snicker))

Everything which does not need to be inside, you leave it outside,

((Snicker))

Comment Re:easy peasy (Score 1) 127

What plastic are you thinking of and at what thickness, that is compatible with liquid oxygen, retains flexibility at LOX (or worse, LH) temperatures, and withstands the pressure, all without adding a massive mass penalty? How is the plastic supposed to deform around every little structure in the habitat (aka, not face multiple atmospheres of asymmetric pressure)? What sort of hardware are you thinking of where every last element is just fine with being frozen down to LOX (or worse, LH) temperatures? How many man hours are you thinking of to "rip out" the giant bag through the tiny docking port (after having to detach it where it's carefully bound around each element? Unless you were thinking of having it fully loose inside there, which is even more problematic. Where's it supposed to go on the ISS? If you're doing the (larger) hydrogen tank, how 100% sure are you that you're not making an explosive fuel-air mixture, given that hydrogen burns at just a couple percentage concentration? How positive are you that you've fully vented every last nook and cranny? And on and on and on.

Wet workshops were worked on during the Apollo era. They were ditched for dry workshops because it's easier, cheaper, and more functional.

Comment Re:Too bad they can't use the SS ext. tanks (Score 3, Interesting) 127

Shuttle ETs never got up to a stable orbit. It would have been possible to use the OMS to take them up there, but then the Shuttle would have had basically no payload capacity on that mission.

Of course, that's one of the lesser problems with the concept. Often proposed, often investigated, but never considered worth throwing serious money into.

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