Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 internet speed test! No Flash necessary and runs on all devices. ×

Comment Re:No Gut no Glory (Score 1) 67

I doubt the tanks will be the root cause of any future payload losses now that they have identified them as a vulnerability. They probably have a vastly better understanding of the envelope of that system now.

SpaceX has basically said that the voids are fine as long as the oxygen does not freeze. If that is true then the "nitroglycerine" in your analogy would be the incredibly low temperatures combined with the fast loading times that they were using. (They were obviously loading helium that was cold enough to freeze oxygen... Yeah. Seriously.)

Now that SpaceX has the most economical launcher on the market I think their strategy is going to change from "launch often - fail quickly", to something like "test often - fail quickly on the testbench". Now that they have a rocket that can do work and make money, a rocket that was funded partly with tax money to carry people for NASA, their focus will naturally shift towards making it more reliable.

Comment Re:Reads Like An Ad (Score 2) 431

Given what? "Renewables" do not provide base load.

The "battery advances" are exciting for cars, but not for letting a 3 GW wind farm act like a 1 GW base-load power plant. That would take a million PowerWalls. literally.

Yeah and that's not eve the big problem. The big problem is getting a solar farm on high (or low) latitudes to deliver power in late winter. Forget about batteries. We're going to need something like a huge underground lake filled with diesel. One of those for each solar farm.

Intermittent power sources really call for a global electric grid with near-zero power loss. Anything short of that will probably never be good enough to completely replace fossil and nuclear power at high latitudes.

It's 2016. Where is my affordable room temperature superconducting wire?

Comment Re:Yes. It will never happen. (Score 1) 260

TSIA.

Since I need to add more to satisfy the /. posting god, my point is that
1) paper is portable and readable in all circumstances. I don't need to fire up a reader, connect to wifi, turn on laptop, whatever: here's your piece of paper, read it.
2) paper is durable and fixed-format: if I put a paper in a file and come back 10 or even 100 years later, barring catastrophe, it'll still be there. The vagaries of non-cloud storage, and (for the cloud) the evolution of estorage and edoc formats means that even if I HAVE the file, i might not be able to read/open it. Shit, I have enough trouble opening now 25 year old docs from my college days plunking on a MacSE.
3) it's harder to edit paper: simply put, edocs are easier to fake, generally.

There are a host of things that paper isn't: searchable, stored effortlessly taking no space, easily (instantly) sent to someone else not present, backed up in case of loss, there are probably a ton of others. But the fact is that for what paper does, and what's important in a business/legal context, it's pretty irreplaceable.

1) This is really only an issue if you're out of range of WiFi and Cellular. Who turns off their computer anyway?
2) That's great for documents that are relevant a year after they were printed, but most documents probably become irrelevant within days of being printed.
3) That's a minus for most documents and use cases.

I think the main reason why paper is still widely used is that UI:s aren't good enough, software and hardware.

The one thing I still need paper for on a daily basis is for scribbling out throwaway notes, diagrams, drawings, etc. Maybe an iPad Pro or a Surface 4 pro could do the job hardware wise, but I doubt that the software is good enough yet.

Comment Re:One party rule (Score 1) 2837

The problem is those groups of people are no longer a small "minority" anymore. We are pretty close to parity...

And what comes after parity, do you think? I doubt Trump will be able to throw out black and brown people nearly fast enough to counteract their higher birth rates compared to white people.

The racial identity political paradigm is not going to be fun at all for white people once they are in the minority.

Comment Re:Batteries (Score 1) 98

No it won't. I'll never own a Samsung product again, phone or otherwise.

I bought a Pixel and I'm not looking back.

Yeah, the good thing about Android is that you have plenty of phones to chose from if a manufacturer messes up.

I for one find Samsung's efforts acceptable for now. I expect they'll keep me and other Samsung customers updated until they've figured out what went wrong with the Note 7.

I don't think I will ever again buy a Samsung phone in the first 6 months or so after release. (I bought the S6 a few months after it came out. I did not buy the Note 7.)

Comment Re:Good or bad news? (Score 2) 38

It's good that they are able to track things down to a reproducable root cause.

There might be room for improvement if the root cause is something that the rest of the industry figured out decades ago.

The deeper root cause question is should/could they have forseen this failure mode if they had used lessons already learned from prefious industry failures.

If the answer is yes, then the corrective action should be to figure out a creative way to add the necessary information path while still staying nimble.

The ultimate root cause seems to have been a lack of understanding of how some of their systems function during the fuelling phase, which lead SpaceX operators to fill a tank with super-cooled fluid at a dangerous rate. The solution seems to be to change their filling procedures until they have a better tank design in place.

You can bet that SpaceX has learned a lot about how fuel tanks work at extreme temperatures and pressures during this investigation.

I look forward to seeing the F9 fly again once they've finished the investigation.

Comment Re:Make a phone with a replaceable Battery (Score 1) 39

I want a battery that can be replaced by mere mortals.

Why? No seriously why? I'm interested in the use case, especially since longevity doesn't seem to come into it since you're so keen to replace the device.

He could be planning on selling or gifting the phone after he's used it for a year himself. It's not an uncommon use case. Niche maybe, but not unheard of.

There is probably a good niche out there for a high end phone with a user-replaceable battery, but I don't think Samsung is interested in it. They won't do it unless Apple does it and apple is never, ever even going to consider doing it. The wear and tear is pretty much the only thing that will keep Apple's customers upgrading their iPhones. A replaceable battery would probably cut Apple's future iPhone profits in half by allowing customers to keep their phones for twice as long.

Comment Re:Cost of loss? (Score 1) 106

Production of food is not the problem. The problem is getting it to where it's needed. Often the worst famines have nothing to do with not enough but with inadequate distribution, often due to war. Many times food that is delivered by charities is taken over by warlords who then profit on it.

Yeah, but there is something to be said for sending food when there is a drought or some other disaster that has caused an actual shortage of food.

Some of the food that we send will end up in the hands of the people after the government officials have stolen their share of the food and the local warlord has taken his toll and what not.

Comment Re:Cost of loss? (Score 5, Insightful) 106

How much did all of this mission cost? Does anyone realize how much food that money could have provided to those in need ON THIS PLANET?! We have no business looking off-planet until we learn to live in harmony with THIS planet.. and with each other.

If you take the budget of ESA and divide that number by the GDP of the EU (a slightly misleading calculation, but not grossly so) you find that the EU spends less than 0.04% of its GDP on space.

You also have to keep in mine that the European economy has a tremendous amount of over-capacity in terms of unemployed people and under-utilised infrastructure and machinery. Europe would not be able to increase its production of food and other goods by anywhere near 0.004% if we stopped spending money on space. We'd just have more unemployed scientists, engineers and factory workers.

Slashdot Top Deals

Nothing ever becomes real till it is experienced -- even a proverb is no proverb to you till your life has illustrated it. -- John Keats

Working...