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Comment storage, not habitat (Score 1) 130

Surely they could be used as storage tanks, instead of living spaces. I doubt they'd be rated, after the stresses of launch, for long-term habitation, but there's going to be ample need for the bulk storage of mass. One of the sad things that is done, is the jettison and burning of trash; perfectly good organics and mass that might be someday useful in orbit, when the technology is developed to make use of them. Then the containers themselves could be used as raw material for some hypothetical future process.

Whether it's worth the investment is another question entirely, though the existence of a tank full of vacuum-dried sewage co-orbiting the ISS might inspire some thinking about what to put it to use for.

The investment, unfortunately, would also have to include the cost of periodic reboostings, keeping it all fastened together, keeping it balanced along a thrust vector, and several other considerations. It could get very expensive to maintain that orbital junkyard as a future investment, which may or may not even pay off.

Comment since the inception... (Score 5, Funny) 217

I swear, some people have the memory of mayflies. The voting machine debacle has been with us for almost 20 years now. They've been proven to be trivially hackable, poorly documented, and lacking significant paper trails in MANY different jurisdictions for ages, now. Suddenly Trump mentions it, and it's this partisan issue? How many people here are so young that they don't remember the blatant corruption surrounding Diebold?

Comment BC FIPPA (Score 2) 104

British Columbia already has this rule; government data (including university data for researchers) must be kept on Canadian servers. There's some wiggle room for opting in to US storage, though.

I think it's important legislation, and it motivates some good duplication of infrastructure within Canada. It makes it harder to abdicate our responsibility to data and makes it just a bit harder for US subpoenas to get a hold of it.

Comment Re:Working models are available now! (Score 2) 195

Trees have a number of problems. First, they're low-efficiency, they only turn a small percentage of sunlight into fuel, the narrow photosynthesis range. Second, they have a long maturation time until they're ready. It takes significant fuel and effort to turn them into a usable fuel; there's cutting, trimming, overburden, hauling, storage, all of which is labour-intensive.

Comment Working as intended (Score 2) 207

Well, that's how the scientific process works. It's not pretty sometimes, but finding a mistake in someone else's work is how we progress. Sometimes people are dicks about it, or refuse to admit their own error.

Get out the popcorn if you like.

This is a question of facts and evidence. Whoever has the best conkers will win.

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