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Comment HOW MUCH, IF ANY? (Score 1) 183

I can't find anything which says how much variation they claim to have seen. Usually when the word "significant" is missing, it means that the variation can't be reliably distinguished from measurement error.

I don't give a rip what they think might be causing variation in decay rates. Not yet.

I want to see some verification that decay rates actually vary at all, first. Last I heard, they don't

Comment Limiting access of (specificially) photographers (Score 2, Insightful) 435

65 feet is only a couple of boat-lengths. That's pretty close. If I was working those booms, I'd be worried about any boat that close running over or afoul of the boom.

So photographers are limited to 65ft. How close can other people get? Is that still 300ft? My guess is that reporters are belly-aching because they can't get close enough to dip a gloved hand into the oil and show it to the camera.


Cheap Incubator Backpack Could Reduce Infant Deaths 76

Boy Wunda writes "In just one six-month period in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in 2006, 96 newborn babies who were in need of medical care died before they could get help. In many developing nations, these deaths could be prevented simply by providing better ways for medical responders to transport infants properly over rough terrain and keep them alive until they can reach hospitals and clinics. Now, a group of Colorado State University seniors has designed and filed a patent for a medically equipped incubator backpack unit that they believe can reduce baby deaths in medical emergencies both in the United States and in newly industrialized nations."

Comment Spy Satellite. Duh! (Score 2, Interesting) 163

This doesn't make sense for a "meteor". The atmosphere is less than 200 miles thick, and the chance that a meteorite will skim across that relatively thin layer of atmosphere long enough to be sited along a 700-mile path over multiple states is infinitesimal. Multiply that by the tiny fractional probability that it would have enough mass to burn that long and the odds look impossible.

More likely, this was a massive satellite in near earth orbit. That's really the only reasonable thing which would match the observations.

So, since it's not being reported as a satellite it's probably a secret satellite. We already know that NASA launches classified payloads. It's safe to assume that other countries do too. Stealth technology would be simple, just build it with flat metal sides painted black and power it with a self-contained reactor (and there's your mass).

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