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News Items / Re: Unmanned Cloud Seeding Aircraft Take Flight in Nevada
« Last post by Ken on Today at 11:15:50 AM »
Heh!  Never got to see that show, except a few episodes.  Sounds like fun.


No, my info came from some guys that were assigned to the group doing the experiments, at Hanscom Field.  Thank Goodness, they were doing the experiments, over the Atlantic.  As it was, we still got some rain on the edges.
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News Items / Re: Unmanned Cloud Seeding Aircraft Take Flight in Nevada
« Last post by Bonnie on Today at 10:37:44 AM »
Quote from: Ken on Today at 08:24:03 AM>Quote
Uh-Oh!  It appears these fellows don't understand why the USAF, put a halt to cloud-seeding experiments, back in the '60's.  It's not that it doesn't work, the big problem was, once they started the rain, they couldn't STOP it.

Episode 5 of "It's About Time" - the only one I remember from that horrible series.  ;)
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News Items / Unmanned Cloud Seeding Aircraft Take Flight in Nevada
« Last post by Ken on Today at 08:24:03 AM »
Uh-Oh!  It appears these fellows don't understand why the USAF, put a halt to cloud-seeding experiments, back in the '60's.  It's not that it doesn't work, the big problem was, once they started the rain, they couldn't STOP it.




https://www.dri.edu/news/dri-news-and-press-releases/5294-unmanned-cloud-seeding-aircraft-takes-flight-in-nevada
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News Items / Re: Scientists discover three 'potentially habitable' planets
« Last post by Ken on May 03, 2016, 11:48:40 AM »
One of the reasons why moons (even if habitable) may not make ideal colonies.  They have a tendencies to be One Face towards their planets.( Really, Really long days )


Though, in this case, it may not be such a big deal, as the estimated "year" for most of these candidate planet will most likely a matter of just a couple of our days, long.  And also be One Face towards their local sun.
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Chatter / Glenn Reynolds: Don't let U.S. become next Rome
« Last post by Ken on May 03, 2016, 10:54:22 AM »
I think this is interesting


http://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2016/05/03/government-complexity-entrenched-special-interests-illinois-puerto-rico-venezuela-column/83801194/


Glenn Reynolds: Don't let U.S. become next Rome
Glenn Harlan Reynolds
6:03 a.m. EDT May 3, 2016

Entrenched political elites will sacrifice anything to retain power, including their own country.

I happened to be reading two things at once last week that in combination led to some disturbing thoughts.The first was Joseph A. Tainter’s The Collapse of Complex Societies, which looks at the fall of various ancient empires, from the early civilizations of Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro, to the Roman Empire and the Maya. Tainter’s theory, to simplify things quite a bit, is that as societies grow they become more complex, slapping on layer after layer of institutions, regulations and customs to deal with challenges (and, I suspect, to facilitate the ruling classes’ extracting resources from the ruled).Over time, these layers grow more and more rigid and take more and more of the society’s resources. It’s hard to change them because every layer of complexity represents some group’s livelihood or claim on power. Eventually, the society is devoting almost all its resources to maintaining these institutions and has very little reserve left to deal with the unexpected. The result is that challenges that it would have weathered easily in the past are now sufficient to bring it to an end.In essence, Tainter’s theory is a more general version of Jonathan Rauch’s Demosclerosis: The Silent Killer of American Government, which is about how special interests have parasitized the United States governmental apparatus, turning much of its resources to their own benefit and doing their best to prevent change.The other thing I was reading was a piece by Richard Fernandez on ”the surprising weakness of invincible institutions.” Fernandez notes that all sorts of big institutions are currently failing: Illinois is being bankrupted by public pension debt, and its own state constitution prohibits any attempt to get out of paying it. His worries sound a lot like Tainter’s.Nor is Illinois the only place being bankrupted this way. Puerto Rico is on the verge of financial collapse too. Its political class has been borrowing and spending for decades, and it has finally reached the point at which it can’t go on. (As Herb Stein famously said, “If something cannot go on forever, it will stop.”) Yet Puerto Ricans, such as the territory's congressional representative Pedro Pierluisi, still resist a federal financial control board as part of a bailout because that might limit the politicians’ gravy train. Likewise, Venezuela, “a country floating on oil with a climate where anything grows,” as Fernandez describes it, is so broke it appears unable even to pay the people who print its money.Because political leaders’ chief concern is their own power and position, they’re willing to do almost anything to stave off a collapse, except reduce their own power and position. Kicking the can down the road usually just makes the problem worse in the end, but politicians would rather do that than make any sacrifice up front.Of course, collapse isn’t, as Tainter notes, always so bad. When the Western Roman Empire collapsed, ordinary people were often better off because they were freed from the empire’s oppressive taxes and regulations (like the rules that sons of soldiers, civil servants and workers in government factories, among others, must enter the trades of their fathers). Many people in the provinces welcomed the barbarians. The new governments were actually better at what governments are for, as Tainter writes: “The smaller Germanic kingdoms that succeeded Roman rule in the West were more successful at resisting foreign incursions (e.g., Huns and Arabs). ... The economic prosperity of North Africa actually rose under the Vandals, but declined again under Justinian’s reconquest when Imperial taxes were reimposed.” Likewise, Venezuelans will probably be better off when they eventually get a new government. They could hardly be worse.Our society isn’t likely to face a collapse like Rome’s — as Tainter notes, everything now is global. But institutions within it are still at risk from politicians’ tendency to skim off benefits for themselves and their cronies while putting the price off into the future. One advantage that democracies have over empires is that they can reset things with an election, tossing out one band of special interests in favor of a new and different band, which at least keeps things mixed up.But as you vote, remember that the more resources you put under the control of the political class, the more likely it is that things will eventually go bad. Politicians seldom look past the next election, and they’re willing to sacrifice pretty much anything to hang on. And that “pretty much anything” includes you.Glenn Harlan Reynolds, a University of Tennessee law professor and the author of The New School: How the Information Age Will Save American Education from Itself, is a member of USA TODAY's Board of Contributors.In addition to its own editorials, USA TODAY publishes diverse opinions from outside writers, including our Board of Contributors. To read more columns like this, go to the Opinion front page and follow us on Twitter @USATOpinion.
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News Items / Re: Scientists discover three 'potentially habitable' planets
« Last post by Flight-ER-Doc on May 03, 2016, 10:50:32 AM »
The astrobiology and astrogeology of Spielbergs worlds are totally backwards:


Multiple indigenous sentient species on a planet, yet the planets are uniform in climate?  I mean an entire planet of ice maybe, but all swamps?  Even at the poles?  And one sentient species, being at the top of the food chain, would crowd or kill out the others...


So, check your disbelief at the door and enjoy the popcorn.
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Low Carb Prepping / Re: Pemmican again
« Last post by Langenator on May 03, 2016, 09:38:49 AM »
I have a hard time with low-carb because I like rice, and biscuits.  :P
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News Items / Re: Scientists discover three 'potentially habitable' planets
« Last post by Langenator on May 03, 2016, 09:36:38 AM »
It's funny, because my kids were watching Return of the Jedi over the weekend, and I was thinking how amazingly unlikely it was that a planetoid like the Endor moon - breathable atmosphere, vegetation (and thus water), human friendly gravity, and so on - would not have been colonized by someone long before.

The Yavin moon (from the original movie) I can kind of understand, based on the events in the Expanded Universe, that the Sith temples and such might have scared potential settlers away.

But why was the Endor moon never colonized? It's not like the Old Republic or the Empire had a Prime Directive, or anything like it.

And now that I've completel
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News Items / Re: Scientists discover three 'potentially habitable' planets
« Last post by Ken on May 02, 2016, 11:04:14 PM »
ummm


If I remember the theories correctly, anything above 70% Earth-mass, MUST require either a Huge moon, or at least a bunch of smaller ones, otherwise, the atmosphere is too dense.  The average size for earth-type planets (without moons or moon) is between 40-60% of ours.


*Sigh*  Yes, that pretty much makes us the Real Kryptonians, of the Universe. (but without the Superpowers, just speed and strength)
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