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Comment Physics ? (Score 3, Insightful) 256

>The idea is that the bomber will take off from a normal home airfield to patrol Russian airspace,...Upon command, it will ascend into outer space, strike a target with nuclear warheads and then return to its home base.

Yeah, right. Why didn't anybody else build a plane than has the capability of ascending into orbit as needed and come back then ? Perhaps because the enormous energy needed to go from aerodynamic flight speed to orbital velocity can't simply be carried along in a pod or something ?

Let's assume that Mr. Solodovnikov's outline of the modus operandi isn't exact but that what is planned is rather along the lines of Airplane takeoff (vs. ICBM rocket which is much more detectable) and going to orbit and drop a heat shielded nuke from there. (No need to land back, it's nuclear war all over anyway by then.) Even this would be so expensive that it will once again stretch Russia's financial capabilities beyond what's possible.

Comment Finally... (Score 1, Interesting) 158

Finally the CEA has something important to do, which is trying to raise credibility in a bloody professional sport that no one believes works without any cheating at all anyway. And it has been like this for a long time now.

Tax money wasted but I have to admit I'd rather have them do this than to develop stuff for nuclear weapons.

Why doesn't everybody just get over it and enjoy - if at all - the Tour de France for what my mother does - the nice scenery of France live on TV ?!

Comment Re:North Korea's next target ... (Score 1) 321

Costly at first to feed and house millions of Germans who had been starving for two generations and had been used to planned poverty, but they caught up surprisingly fast.

I sincerely hope that my literally inexistant knowledge of NK ist still much better than yours of divided Germany. There has never been any starving or housing problems in east Germany during the existance of the iron curtain and not nearly as much oppression of the population and never any real isolation from information from the rest of the world. Not that the GDA was fine, don't get me wrong...

Comment Re:That's stupid. (Score 1) 118

First, I really don't understand the US legal system and am pretty glad that I am not subjected to it.

Second, thanks for taking the time to explain, honestly.

Third, in my humble opinion the length of a prison sentence should not be a function of which person is implied in the legal process at any level nor of any other variable that has no relation to the crime committed itself, like prison overcrowding as you mentioned. Perhaps there shouldn't even, under any circumstances, be the *possibility* that someone could serve 30 years for mere theft/fraud w/o violence...

I am naive, I know.

Comment That's stupid. (Score 1, Troll) 118

One should get a life sentence (to which 30 years might be pretty close depending on your age) for murder, but for a financial scam ? That will be pretty costly for the taxpayers and would not be much more of a deterrent to his colleages than, say 3 or 5 years in prison. Let's hope the guy gets to pay the money back and then some and somehow kept away from computers for 30 years...

Comment CD player (Score 1) 481

When I finally decided I had enough CDs to warrant my own player (borrowed my parent's one up to that point all the time), I afforded the cheapest one that could be found in the local store. I realized fairly quickly that it really did lack one thing: the screen for track number etc. was just LCD, no backlight. I pulled the reflective foil on the back, put some white plastic for scattering the light and two LEDs behind it and that was it.

While doing the above hack I realized that the inputs from the buttons for play, stop, skipping tracks etc. were connected in a matrix that had quite a few unused interconnects... It turned out that some of them did trigger undocumented functions like fast forward, repeat from A to B and the like. I wired buttons for those functions and - well - never used them.

As for dishwashers and the like: buy the best quality stuff for a resonable price in decent used condition and never worry again. Mine was 10 years old at the time and I it's still happily chugging away 15 years later !

Comment Re:Truly (Score 2) 200

Anyone has tried to think why this is so ? My 2 cts FWIW:

I think that the world today is so much more commercialized than it was when we were kids (I'm born in the early 70's) and the whole show only works with ever expanding market volumes. Which implies that the tinkering kid is not as nearly a good consumer as the one who never gets beyond the next and the next unboxing event of some premade stuff. And some of us are even shareholders of that economy... In short, we all are much more consumers than we were a few decades ago.

A lot of stuff gets passed down from one generation to another also, which means that my kids would have had a nice collection of Legos even without ever getting a gift on their own. Now add to that what is to be foud under the christmas tree. There's too much stuff around to get bored.

I try to teach the kids to screw around with stuff, to make them understand that a bicycle from that thrash that we've fixed is so much better than a new one etc. but it's hard when those bloody grandparents come along with yet another gift...

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