August 9th, 2005

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(no subject)

That gust of wind? That was me doing a huge sigh of relief. The Space Shuttle has landed safely.

I'm still kind of dismayed that the fleet is grounded, though. I mean it's hard to imagine that the foam lining of the fuel tank is such a hard problem solve. A slight reduction of thickness of the lining and then a layer of chicken wire, and one very thin wrap of fiberglass.

Suposedly the Shuttle Fleet is to be retired in the 2010 - 2012 range. The replacement technology looks depressingly 1960's. For all the technology with RAM/SCRAM jets and with the civilian space effort pushing the technology we are taking a step backwards.

One technology that sounded like sci-fi when I first heard of it, but after seeing the science invovled actually seems plausable is the space elevator.

The idea behind the space elevator is centrifical force. You take and construct a huge weight in space and hold it to the earth with a nano-tube ribon ranging three to five feet wide, likely several layers thick. The centrifical force of the earth spinning causes the weight to pull out from the earth keeping the ribbon taunt. Theweight would be a few hundred tons, and as the cargo (upto 300 tons in weight) climbs the ribbon it adds to the centrifical force. It turns out the high speeds winds aloft would have little impact on the ribbon as the higher you get (where the winds are faster) the air also gets dramatically thinner so it has little impact on the ribbon. The end goal is to be able to take 3 hour to lift 300 tons into space. From there you could use small manuevering rockets to put whatever you want in to a low Earth orbit. But I think the coolest part will be if they have some sort of ability to take passengers. How much would you spend to go on a 6 to 8 hour trip where you would get to safely go to space, spend a couple hours in zero-g, and maybe see rockets launched if the platform is also delivering a satelite or two.

[CAUTION: The stats on the space ribbon are from vague memories, so take with a grain of salt.]
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(no subject)

I have not been spending enough quality time with my camera. I took some pictures of the moon last night and I found the previous pictures ont he camera were almost three weeks old.

Anyway, here is a sun set from a few weeks ago...

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(no subject)

Ugh! Me Make fire.... From water!!!

I think that is rather cool, except seperating water into hydrogen and oxygen is electrically expensive. Though, there has been progress in that regard. It has been found that the bacteria used for cleaning water at water treatment plants, when deprived oxygen, and then provided 10% of the electricity normally required to seperate the base atoms of water will take the O2 for themselves and release the hydrogen. Cheap hydrogen for fuel cells anyone?

And for the car lovers (or haters, depending on how you go with this) there isa a DIY car insignia service...

Hmmm.... Will anyone believe the "R-Type" logo on my Dodge pickup? :-P Actually, I am expecting SUV haters to make insignia's to replace the factory spec insignias on the SUV's they hate. Like bumper stickers, but more subtle. If you could change the model or make logo on your car or someone elses, what you you replace, and what would you replace it with?
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(no subject)

Some Pepe le Pew quotes for wooing...

“Where are you, my little gumbo of chicken? Your French fried shrimp is sizzling for you.”

“Permit me to introduce myself, I am your new lover.”

“Where are you, my little object of art? I am here to collect you.”

“Is it possible to be too attractive?”

“The game of love is never called on account of darkness, my little midnight snack."

“You may call me Streetcar, because of my desire for you.”

“You stop resisting me, bebe, and I’ll stop resisting you.”

“You are the corned beef, and I am the cabbage. The corned beef is nothing without the cabbage.”

“You are my peanut, I am your brittle!”

“You know, most men would get discouraged by now fortunately for you, I am not most men!”

"Ah! This little one wishes to commit suicide to prove her love for me. What a sweet gesture. Nevertheless, I must prevent it."

"Friday? Monday? Right now?"

"Everyone should have a hobby, don't you think? Mine is making love."

"When you are a skunk, you learn how to hold your breath for a long time."

"There are plenty of fish in the ocean, if you like fish. Personally, I prefer girls."

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(no subject)

Todays Oregonian, front page of the Living section, has decided some classic poems need some new umpf. To achieve this they have replaced a key work in each poem with the word "pants". Here are the results:

Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his pants fill up with snow.

-- Robert Frost

Pants! Pants!
Nightmare of Pants!
Pants the loveless!
Mental Pants!
Pants the heavy judger of men!
Pants the incomprehensible prison!

-- Allen Ginsberg

Between the desire
And the spasm
Between the potency
And the existence
Between the essence
And the descent
Falls the Pants

-- T.S. Eliot

I sound my barbaric YAWP
over the pants of the world.

-- Walt Whitman

Hear the pants with the bells
Silver bells!
What a world of merriment their melody foretells!
How they tinkle, tinkle, tinkle In the icy pants of night!
While the pants that oversprinkle
All the pants, seem to twinkle
With a crystalline delight;
Keeping time, time, time, In a sort of
Runic rhyme,
To the tintinnabulation that so musically wells
From the pants, pants, pants, pants,
Pants, pants, pants
From the jingling and the tinkling of the pants.

-- Edgar Allan Poe

There are many that I miss
having sent my last pants out a car window
sparking along the road one night, years ago.

-- Billy Collins

Aunt Jennifer's pants prance across a screen,
Bright topaz denizens of a world of green
They do not fear the men beneath the tree;
They pace in sleek chivalric certainty.

-- Adrienne Rich

The caged bird sings
with a fearful trill
of pants unknown
but longed for still
and his tune is heard
on the distant hill
for the caged bird sings of pants.

-- Maya Angelou

Humanity i love you because you
are perpetually putting the secret of
life in your pants and forgetting
it's there and sitting down
on it.

-- e.e. cummings