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Comment Tomorrow's war (Score 2) 177

Robots will be excellent in fighting the human bodies of today's terrorists. But how will we defend ourselves against robot warriors of terrorist organizations? The old story: we arm ourselves for todays war and are blind for the future. Dutch politics has been discussing the Joint Strike Fighter for more than 10 years. They end up replacing 60+ F16 jets for a mere 34 JSF jets costing billions of dollars and will not see their limitations.

Comment 300 km is fine (Score 1) 488

You do not have to go to 36000 km height to have a space experience. The international Space Station orbits at 300 km height and provides us with fantastic pictures. The authors mention the 36000 km height because geostationary satellites are at that height. And, apparently, something big like the terminal staion must be at that height to hold the elevator cable in place.

Comment Beauty is also in "swing" (Score 1) 234

Much of the beauty of music is in the way it is played. The piano player in the TED video was so kind to take the music seriously and make the best of it, i.e. suggesting structure by subtly varying the duration of notes relative to how they are written in the score. The piece would be much uglier when converted into a midi file and played automatically on an electric piano.

Comment Get rid of license plates (Score 1) 222

Technically, there is not a good reason why people should drive around with a visible license plate. Within 10 years or so, cars will drive a round with a GPS and some module to transmit their location and identification for whichever purposes the government thinks it is needed (usage fees, maintaining traffic laws, etc.). Others will not be able to read location and identification signals.

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