Chat Log: January 5th, 2013

00:02:11 : "xihr" left the channel.
00:11:18 : "xihr" joined the channel.
00:23:42 : <fredskuentz> .weather 85018
00:23:43 : <Outsider> Clear ☼, 60.8℉ (16℃), 30.19in (1019mb), Calm 0kt (↑) - KPHX 23:51Z
00:23:51 : <fredskuentz> brrr
01:08:05 : <Akiraa> no chat today?
01:08:23 : <Akiraa> oh, wrong time
01:09:44 : <Akiraa> anyways, something for later
01:10:53 : <sean> main chat is tomorrow at 3 eastern
01:11:28 : <sean> fuck you fred
01:11:42 : <sean> the oysters out in the cooler are still frozen
01:13:45 : <Akiraa> interestingly, planetary resources has a contract from nasa to make mini space telescopes
01:13:59 : <Akiraa> so they may be in the business of pickaxes and shovels rather than the gold itself
01:14:31 : <Akiraa> it's marginally good to be a miner, great to sell tools and apple pie to them
01:14:54 : <sean> heh
01:15:20 : <sean> give slooh a try
04:13:07 : "Akiraa" left the channel.
13:25:37 : "Akiraa" joined the channel.
14:16:42 : "Dan" joined the channel.
14:18:16 : <Dan> Hi there! I just wanted to drop in early and say that Lyn & I will be on the road today during chat time. Got to drive to Atlanta and pick up a washer & dryer from some friends who will be moving to Seattle in about 2 weeks.
15:36:56 : <sean> I could use a washer and dryer myself. washer not washing and dryer died about 4 years ago. through it off the roof a couple years ago during the flood cleanup.
15:37:07 : <sean> through=threw
15:38:28 : <andy> did it make a satisfyingly loud crash when it hit the ground? Or did it just sink into the mud?
15:40:51 : <sean> more of a thud than anything else
15:41:23 : <sean> barely even deformed. I was hoping for a lot more from about 20 feet up.
15:41:59 : <sean> just set up a synchronet bbs.
15:50:44 : <sean> telnet to and tell me if it works.
15:51:08 : <Dan> I've just put my ramps & hand-truck into the pick-up. Never driven this pick-up of Dad's before. Buggers got more buttons and controls than a space shuttle, LOL!
15:52:12 : <sean> sounds like my dad's truck
15:52:51 : <andy> sean: Seems to be working...
15:53:40 : <sean> it is just a base synchronet. more or less just checking to see if I did the port forward right.
15:54:05 : <Dan> I did find the cruse controls yesterday as I drove it home from Mom & Dad's. That's one worry off my mind. It seems to have plenty of horsepower, too. I think Dad bot it to tow the boat with, so if it has enough power for that, it'll haul a washer & dryer easily.
15:54:31 : <sean> will probably put some door games on it. like legend of the red dragon and trade wars.
15:54:46 : <sean> the shit that I waste my time with.
16:21:11 : <Dan> OK, we're on our way to Atlanta.
16:33:35 : "Lensman" joined the channel.
17:45:03 : <SeanS> drivin', drivin', drivin'...
18:28:20 : <Lensman> Hi fen!
18:30:06 : <SeanS> Hi David
18:34:46 : <SeanS> .weather 40601
18:34:49 : <Outsider> Clear ☼, 42.8℉ (6℃), 30.30in (1023mb), Light breeze 5kt (↑) - KLOU 17:53Z
18:39:02 : "NickE" joined the channel.
18:39:51 : <SeanS> Hey Nick
18:39:51 : <NickE> Greetings programmes
18:40:08 : <NickE> HNY matey
18:41:58 : <SeanS> Going to have to go on a beer run before too long.
18:43:09 : <NickE> sounds lik a plan. Already got mine in :-) Will be eating shortly, beer later
18:43:53 : <NickE> hope the old latop holds up (not been used in a while)
18:45:36 : <SeanS> you have had a five hour jump on me. ;)
18:58:01 : <SeanS> to the store I go.
18:58:42 : <NickE> l8rs
18:59:08 : <NickE> ah, full tum
19:01:04 : <Lensman> .weather 66109
19:01:05 : <Outsider> Cloudy, 42.8℉ (6℃), 30.07in (1015mb), Moderate breeze 15kt (↑) - KMCI 18:53Z
19:01:51 : <Lensman> Now that's useful! Thanks, Sean.
19:12:12 : "Jim" joined the channel.
19:32:33 : <SeanS> beer run completed.
19:36:28 : <SeanS> tis the phenny bot.
19:37:18 : <NickE> Huh, negative Kelvin temerature materials: Discuss
19:37:38 : <NickE>
19:37:42 : <SeanS> i saw some headline about that
19:37:58 : <NickE> from one of todays list digests
19:38:16 : <SeanS> i thought by definition you could not have a negative kelvin temp.
19:38:41 : <NickE> I kinda always thought that if anyone actually got somethingto absolute zero exactly, teh whole universe would collapse. Or something
19:38:59 : <NickE> Seems that you can. And now my head hurts
19:39:40 : <SeanS> that just means that the kelvin scale needs to be modified to the new temp. if the experiment can be repeated.
19:40:29 : <SeanS> but if it is a quantum gas, whatever that is, it kinda messes with the rules by definition as well.
19:42:17 : <NickE> the whole " it acts like dark energy...maybe the cosmologists should take a look" comment made me wibble
19:43:45 : <SeanS> I have only read the headline. not the article itself.
19:43:49 : <NickE> Isn't science cool (even if some of it makes my head hurt)
19:44:55 : <Jim> classical mechanics and thermodynamics does not make one's head hurt
19:46:37 : <Jim> Dan has a computer in his car.
19:47:13 : <NickE> does if you hit it with them hard enough :-)
19:47:30 : <SeanS> I have at least 2 in mine. one tells me how to get places and the other lets me lock the keys inside and still get back in.
19:48:04 : <Jim> don't forget the engine's computer
19:48:25 : <SeanS> thats why i said at least 2. ;)
19:49:53 : "Hippy" joined the channel.
19:50:19 : <NickE> HNY DJ
19:50:20 : <Hippy> Morning, afternooon, etc everyone
19:50:37 : <Hippy> It appears you have a cold, NIck
19:50:51 : <NickE> kinda
19:50:58 : <NickE> :-)
19:50:59 : <Hippy> Oh, wait. An acronym!
19:51:07 : <Jim> Hippy!
19:51:27 : <Hippy> It's a litttle early for acronyms, but yes, HNY to you, too :)
19:51:47 : <SeanS> ok, i am not familiar with that particular TLA.
19:51:55 : <Jim> Happy Christmas and Merry New Year
19:52:01 : <Hippy> Hi, Jim. Are you bacon on the aeagon as far as the tobacco goes?
19:52:10 : <Lensman> Welcome Hippy and everyone!
19:52:12 : <Jim> Yes
19:52:29 : <Hippy> Good to hear.
19:52:33 : <Hippy> Hi, Lens!
19:52:44 : <NickE> brb
19:52:52 : "SolBelter" joined the channel.
19:52:54 : <Hippy> Well it's 2013 with a vengeance, isn't it?
19:54:06 : <Lensman> I don't think the so-called "negative temperature" thing means anything. A physicist on a forum I frequent claims that this has been demonstrated before within laser beams. And if you look at the details of the experiment, they're talking about an effect similar to a Bose-Einstein condensate. In other words, it's a quantum effect.
19:54:53 : <Hippy> As I say, with a vengrance. . .
19:56:26 : <Lensman> Happy 2013 to everyone!
19:57:04 : <SolBelter> and to you Lensman!
20:03:04 : "dmac44" joined the channel.
20:03:08 : <Jim> The article said that the quantum gas at "negative" temperatures behaved in some unusual ways.
20:03:19 : <dmac44> Hi guys. Happy New Year!
20:03:54 : <Jim> Another peculiarity of the sub-absolute-zero gas is that it mimics 'dark energy', the mysterious force that pushes the Universe to expand at an ever-faster rate against the inward pull of gravity. Schneider notes that the attractive atoms in the gas produced by the team also want to collapse inwards, but do not because the negative absolute temperature stabilises them. “It’s interesting that this weird feature pops up in the U
20:03:55 : <SeanS> and to you dmac.
20:05:42 : <fredskuentz> argh
20:05:47 : <fredskuentz> I forgot the chat
20:05:54 : <fredskuentz> greets peeps
20:06:09 : <NickE> hi fred
20:06:11 : <Hippy> Hi, Fred
20:06:19 : <Akiraa> hello all
20:06:22 : <Lensman> Certainly an interesting experiment, but no reason to change the Kelvin scale.
20:06:35 : <dmac44> I read some articles about it too but don't claim to understand it. I wonder what it means for entropy?
20:07:09 : <Akiraa> what do you think about the idea that space expansion as a _local_ consequence of lack of gravity, rather than a global metric shift
20:07:25 : <Akiraa> i.e. that expansion could happen around bubbles of relatively more empty space
20:07:30 : <Lensman> I don't claim to understand it either, but as I understand it, thermodynamics only holds on the classical scale. It can be violated on the quantum scale, as in this experiment.
20:07:33 : <Akiraa> rather than uniformly across the universe
20:08:14 : "Larry" joined the channel.
20:08:26 : <dmac44> Hi Larry.
20:08:27 : <Hippy> Interesting, Akiraa. I don't see any way we could prove it or disprove it
20:08:30 : <fredskuentz> Hello Larry
20:08:33 : <fredskuentz> & HNY
20:08:33 : <Jim> Larry!
20:08:37 : <Hippy> Happy New Year, Larry
20:08:38 : <Lensman> Welcome larry!
20:08:58 : <Larry> Hello all, and Happy New Year.
20:09:25 : <Larry> what is to be proven?
20:09:26 : <Lensman> I seem to recall something recent in astrophysics that suggested there may be a huge "hole" in one area of the observable the universe where there isn't any mass... not even dark matter.
20:09:45 : <Lensman> A vacuum in the vacuum, so to speak?
20:10:06 : <Akiraa> Hippy: one interesting consequence for sci-fi to exploit would be that space travel through emptier space takes longer (crossing a void may be longer than going around it)
20:10:09 : <NickE> Hapy New Year Larry
20:10:12 : <Lensman> Larry, we're discussing the news of the experiment that claims negative temperature is possible.
20:10:24 : <Larry> as if the Big Bang were asymmetrical?
20:10:27 : <SolBelter> Hi Larry
20:10:49 : <Akiraa> Larry: as if empty space expands faster than space with more gravity bodies in it
20:10:51 : <Lensman> Yes, asymmetrical.
20:11:31 : <Larry> I don't know how to measure negative temperature.
20:11:32 : <Akiraa> if your journey is cosmological (in time and space) you have to take these effects into account
20:11:44 : <Lensman> But then, we already knew it wasn't a uniform expansion, it was a "lumpy" one. If it had been entirely uniform, there would be no galaxies.
20:12:18 : <Lensman> Larry, I think the so-called "negative temperature" is a quantum effect. Probably means a lot less than the label suggests.
20:12:21 : <Larry> I suggested a mechanism to form galaxies in "The Missing Mass".
20:12:22 : "iFred" joined the channel.
20:12:56 : <Lensman> I confess I don't recall that Draco Tavern story.
20:12:57 : <Hippy> That was the Draco Tavern story I jsst didn't get
20:13:34 : <Hippy> I don't think those two events are connected, thoigh
20:13:34 : <Larry> I've always liked the title "Less Than Meets the Eye". It was a detective story.
20:14:42 : <Lensman> We discussed the negative temperature on another forum, and a physicist said this isn't a new thing, that it's been demonstrated before within laser beams. Note this new experiment used a laser lattice to set up the conditions.
20:15:15 : <Lensman> Lensman marks it down to be re-read, also.
20:15:17 : <SolBelter>
20:15:43 : <Hippy> That's handy!
20:16:01 : <Larry> The idea: if something (like a life form) uses vacuum energy, space disappears. Mass accumulates in the residue. Hence galaxies.
20:17:44 : <Hippy> Ah. . .
20:18:20 : <Hippy> So, you wouldn't need a Big Bang to explain space, just a steady state universe with these things eventually evolving in it
20:19:20 : <Larry> hmm. I hadn't thought Steady State.
20:19:27 : <Akiraa> intergalactic cows, grazing on vacuum energy and making the universe habitable
20:20:10 : <dmac44> pooping out matter?
20:20:21 : <Akiraa> and the accelerated expansion as a sign that someone's messing with the cows
20:20:36 : <Akiraa> universal environmentalism
20:20:46 : <Jim> A spacecraft that uses vacuum energy could create more destinations for it to travel to.
20:20:58 : <Larry> dmac44: no. Space contracts, leaving the matter behind.
20:20:59 : <Hippy> Well, if the asymmery of the mass in the universe isn't created as a consequence of an explosion, then you don't need a Big Bang to explain it, you've got these life forms. But here I wade in the treacherous waters of physics
20:21:01 : <Lensman> Some of the results of the experiment are certainly interesting, on the quantum scale. But will we ever see such conditions occurring naturally in the universe? Maybe so, I've read of natural lasing being observed by astronomers.
20:21:58 : <Akiraa> wait until there is a supernova in the line of sight behind you and toward the target
20:22:14 : <Akiraa> and then send a really powerful modulated signal in the wake of the supernova
20:22:18 : <Lensman> I think you're entirely correct Hippy; it would indeed obviate any need for the Big Bang, and bring back the possibility of a Steady State universe.
20:22:22 : <Hippy> Or caue one
20:22:31 : <Akiraa> alien races may watch the sky for supernovae and then notice your interesting modulation
20:23:01 : <Lensman> Remember in "The Borderland of Sol" the Steady State theory had come back into vogue.
20:23:16 : <Hippy> So, that esplains 'The Star' by Arthur C Clarke
20:23:48 : <Hippy> A supernova is used to send a laser across space carrying the message that they aliens have cheap meds available from this website
20:23:53 : <Akiraa> it may be the most efficient way to signal stuff across the universe
20:24:20 : <SeanS> interesting concept.
20:24:24 : <Lensman> But is expedited shipping available?
20:24:27 : <Jim> herbal viagra
20:24:51 : <Hippy> I thought you wer off the tobacco? :)
20:24:59 : <Jim> back on
20:25:00 : <Lensman> If my g'g'g'g grandchildren will take delivery, I'm not interested.
20:25:09 : <Akiraa> although at right enough scales, the universe looks the same (seen a supercluster, seen them all)
20:25:30 : <Akiraa> so there would not be any meaningful exchange of physical resources
20:25:36 : <Akiraa> even at the galactic scale
20:25:53 : <Akiraa> the same elements are everywhere
20:25:56 : <Lensman> Not without FTL travel, no.
20:26:50 : <Akiraa> at what point do mollecular 3d printers start to make sense?
20:26:54 : <Larry> exchange of mental resources seems to be the likelihood.
20:27:24 : <Jim> how do we know there are not stars containing large quantities of ultra-uranium elements?
20:27:31 : <SeanS> ala Ed's InterstellerNET
20:27:37 : <Hippy> Then you can instruct the receiver how to make their herbal viagra or whateever which amounts to the same thing as sending it
20:28:03 : <Hippy> And then you can reproduce and colonise, a la 'Species'
20:28:08 : <Lensman> Does the scenario in A GIFT FROM EARTH make any sense? Why send a sample of the artificial organs on an interstellar voyage lasting several decades, instead of just sending detailed instructions for how to make the stuff; instructions sent at lightspeed?
20:28:38 : <Akiraa> there may not be a factory by the time the signal fades into the background
20:29:13 : <Akiraa> if you transmit isotropically, signals won't get very far
20:29:14 : <Hippy> Yes. If the theory holds true that any singal degeneates to noise within 2 light years, you have to send the stuff
20:29:24 : <Akiraa> if you have directional beams, you have to know where to aim them
20:29:37 : <Hippy> Which you would
20:29:48 : <Hippy> at least in Known Space
20:29:49 : <Lensman> Good point, Hippy. So you'd need relay stations to send a message any significant interstellar distance.
20:30:33 : <Lensman> Obviously interstellar laser messages are possible in Known Space.
20:30:38 : <Hippy> As I understand it, yes, but I don't know if the signal actually does degrade that fast. I mean, I can see Alpha Centauri from here, so some light gets through
20:31:26 : <Akiraa> dyson spheres or similar devices may be observable from a long way away
20:31:37 : <Lensman> Surely if the modulation was slow enough, the message would get thru? Might have to use something like the Navy's ELF message system.
20:31:50 : <SolBelter> perhaps physical aids were sent to help build organs on a larger scale than one man's fingertips
20:32:07 : <SolBelter> the salve
20:32:20 : <Akiraa> Lensman: there is a minimum frequency at which a signal would travel through the galaxy
20:33:02 : <SolBelter> if earth also sent factory seeds
20:33:08 : <Jim> Akiraa, what is that frequency (or wavelength)?
20:33:29 : <Hippy> 23cm?
20:33:39 : <Larry> many of the facts behind Known Space have changed. No, the ramrobots don't make sense. The chosing of marginally habitable worlds seems unlikely too: our telescopes are better than tthat.
20:33:45 : <Hippy> Some frequency is mentioned in 'Ringworld'
20:33:53 : <SolBelter> to speed up production
20:34:16 : <SeanS> Ringworld mentions the hydrogen band... 23cm
20:34:53 : <Lensman> It's said that in KS, laser messages between the colonies were rare. Why? Why not set up an interstellar telegraph? Let's say that messages do fuzz out unless they're sent very slowly, and even then they fade in and out. So very unreliable. Now, it does make sense to send the actual material. Especially if the ramrobots can travel at a high fraction of lightspeed; that means the ship gets there before you can send back a message saying "He
20:35:26 : <iFred> 21cm
20:35:29 : <Hippy> It would depend on how keen you are to have colonies, though. Plateau is habitable on one part of it, and you can't be choosy when you only have a few to choose from
20:36:05 : <SeanS> i sit corrected ;)
20:36:06 : <Hippy> WeMadeIt is close by, and they can build undergrond, so let's get colonising
20:36:11 : <iFred> :)
20:36:31 : <Akiraa> Jim: somewhere around 1 kHz
20:36:32 : <iFred> I can't remember what I had for lunch, but, thanks to Larry, I remember the hydrogen band
20:36:37 : <Jim> You can build underground on Mars or on the Moon.
20:36:48 : <Akiraa> Jim: it can vary depending on what's in th way
20:37:27 : <Akiraa> Jim: the Sun is currently in a region 1/10 the medium particle density of the galaxy
20:37:43 : <Akiraa> so we ought to probe our local cloud in the lower frequency bands
20:38:03 : <Lensman> All the arguments for building a colony on Mars certainly apply to We Made It.
20:38:30 : <Jim> We can build underground in the Gobi desert.
20:38:31 : <Lensman> Even more; We Made It already has a living ecosystem.
20:38:34 : <iFred> We made its core is a solid ball of ice?
20:38:35 : <dmac44> It seems to me a laser can travel as far as you want. The determining factor is power not frequency.
20:39:15 : <Hippy> In whcih case the colony worlds would be in constnat contact with Earth
20:39:41 : <Hippy> Or at least in constnat reception of what Earth sends. They may lose interest in communicating back
20:39:56 : <Lensman> Surely you could blink the laser off and on in a morse code transmission, if nothing better. It's said that broadcast radio and TV signals would fuzz out, but that doesn't mean you can't send messages via laser. As has been said, if you can see a star clearly, then you should be able to see a laser beam if it's powerful enough.
20:40:03 : <andy> dmac44: a laser could travel as far as you want IF you can get the coherence perfect. Which we can't. Lasers from earth's surface to the moon spreads to something to like a mile.
20:40:16 : <Akiraa> Lensman: there's the Heinlein argument, a freer society attracts immigrants
20:40:41 : <Akiraa> the gobi desert can't ever develop in the vicinity of empires
20:41:01 : <Akiraa> the frontier mindset
20:41:46 : <Hippy> And each of the KS colonies would want immigrants - even Wunderland needs a working class
20:41:47 : <Lensman> No, you'll always get spread at interstellar distances. Spread is a funciton of how big the emitter is. But spreading doesn't mean it loses coherance.... it doesn't stop being a laser beam. It just spreads out and gets fainter.
20:42:25 : <dmac44> andy: if the Moties can get the coherence to travel 35 light years so can we. :)
20:42:28 : <Akiraa> a star with a particularly bright piece of spectrum may draw attention
20:42:40 : <Akiraa> or a few abnormal spikes
20:42:45 : <andy> dmac44: Fair enough. :)
20:44:23 : <Larry> a laser beam over 35 years won't stop being monochrome. It may lose message value.
20:44:55 : <Akiraa> a pilot beam, more spread out but at a high coherence
20:45:17 : <SeanS> I think we need to go straight to testing. somebody crack the whip on nasa.
20:45:22 : <Akiraa> followed by a data beam, more narrow
20:46:10 : <Hippy> are you wating for someone to respons to the pilot beam?
20:46:30 : <Larry> crack the whip on NASA? Hahahahahaha!
20:46:48 : <SeanS> too bad nobody thought to put that kind of receiver on one of the voyager probes. they are pretty much in the cloud now.
20:46:48 : <Jim> No, the pilot beam would serve to say "there is a data beam coming, look here."
20:48:33 : <SolBelter> Sean, u mean crack the whip on Senators Shelby and Nelson, who control mucfh of nasa budget
20:49:04 : <Hippy> That makes sense, Jim
20:49:15 : <SeanS> it was more wishful thinking that anything else, SolBelter.
20:49:32 : <SolBelter> i know, sigh
20:50:28 : <Jim> Unfortunately for NASA, our society appears to be more interested in the adventures of the post-adolecents on Buckwild and Jersey Shore.
20:50:34 : <SolBelter> Just give the money to LaserMotive to build a beam :)
20:53:39 : <SeanS> or wicked lasers. they have some cool stuff.
20:54:09 : <Hippy> I suggest a prize: first to build a laser of said specification gets the prize
20:54:37 : <Lensman> SpaceX is dropping the cost of an orbital launch significantly. Virgin Galactic is selling space tourism tickets. Bigalow has already tested putting a sizable scale model inflatable "hotel" into orbit. Within a few years, the question of "What is worth going to orbit for?" will no longer be academic. Is there really any way to exploit orbital space? Or will we have to go all the way to asteroid mining for anything of commercial value?
20:54:38 : <Jim> I thought that was something like what DARPA did.
20:54:44 : <SeanS> kind of moot until there is a receiver to test with.
20:55:06 : <Hippy> Yes, I was hoping no-one would spot that :)
20:55:54 : <Hippy> Larry has suggested that you move the polluting industries into orbit
20:56:06 : <Hippy> Orbital vacuum distilleries
20:56:13 : <Jim> Can't move mining to orbit.
20:56:24 : <Hippy> I'm not sure about growing long crystal strings or whatever in orbit
20:56:55 : <Larry> Prizes work. How about one for the first laser to write a logo across the Moon? HEINLEIN LIVES!
20:57:04 : <Hippy> Power receivers beaming back power via microwaves or something
20:57:09 : <NickE> heh
20:57:26 : <SeanS> yeah, ansari proved that prizes work.
20:57:33 : <Lensman> Manufacturing in orbit means you have to move raw materials into orbit, and move finished products from orbit to earth. Hard to imagine how to make the cost competitive, given the literally sky-high shipping costs.
20:57:36 : <SolBelter> flashback to Aberdeen Proving Grounds 1930s - Sarge explainging there was a $10000 prize for a deathray that could kill this goat, and years later, still alive!
20:57:38 : <NickE> now where have I read that bfore... :-)
20:57:49 : <Akiraa> there's a plan to build a light gas gun (serving as a lower stage for a g-hardened rocket)
20:58:08 : <Akiraa> good way to send cargo into orbit
20:58:09 : <Hippy> Prizes may have a limited lifespan, though. Look at who they're putting up for the Nobel Peace Prize
20:58:20 : <Lensman> A Space Elevator may make orbital industries practical. Hard to imagine anything less than that, unless it's something you really need and literally can't make on the surface of the Earth.
20:58:55 : <Akiraa> by the time the elevator becomes economical, the human race would already inhabit space
20:58:57 : <iFred> How about just using the space elevator to throw away the pollution?
20:58:58 : <SeanS> raw materials are already there. mine the neo asteroids
20:59:26 : <Akiraa> also, don't forget the hazards of a 30k km tower wrapping around the earth in a failure
21:00:01 : <SeanS> i think you slipped a digit there
21:00:17 : <Lensman> Lawrence Livermore Labs did experiment with a hypervelocity gas gun, to launch small packages into orbit, yes. Cheaper than a rocket launch, probably. But still expensive, I suspect.
21:00:28 : <Hippy> Plus, if you mine the asteroids, how do you get the mined material., or the smelted ores or whatever, back to Earth? You can't just drop them
21:01:00 : <NickE> yeah you could MIAHM style
21:01:13 : <Akiraa> Lensman: doing away with the lower stage is a huge bonus
21:01:20 : <SeanS> small space planes launched on delta 2 or delta 4 rockets. what nasa should of done instead of the space shuttle.
21:01:37 : <Lensman> A carbon nanotube tether for the Space Elevator would be so light that if it fell, it wouldn't be a disaster. More of an annoyance.
21:02:07 : <Akiraa> it could veer off orbit, wobble, vibrate itself to pieces
21:02:21 : <Akiraa> then whip around
21:02:32 : <Akiraa> not pleasant to be at the tip of that whip
21:02:40 : <iFred> That's what Louis Wu said about all those millions of miles of Shadow Square wire he dropped on that city
21:02:54 : <Hippy> What about an orbital prison? That might work
21:02:55 : <Lensman> As Hippy says. You still need to supply delta-V to move things from whatever orbit it's in, down to Earth.
21:03:21 : <Hippy> Then orbital sheep producing orbital wool. It's the story of my own once-proud nation writ in orbit
21:03:51 : <iFred> What's the advantage of an orbital prison?
21:04:06 : <Jim> No escapes.
21:04:09 : <SeanS> if they escape, they are totally screwed
21:04:09 : <Hippy> It keeps the French from doing it :)
21:04:15 : <iFred> We aren't short of land.
21:04:35 : <dmac44> Lens: I wouldn't want to be under that annoyance if it fell.
21:04:45 : <Akiraa> a prison built inside a sufficiently large black hole
21:04:48 : <Lensman> For what they're currently talking about for the Space Elevator tether, think Saran Wrap. Not shadow square wire!
21:04:55 : <Jim> Actually, there are good places in the US now where one would not want to escape from prison.
21:05:03 : <Lensman> Very very tough Saran Wrap.
21:05:15 : <Lensman> But you can cut it fairly easily.
21:05:30 : <SeanS> yeah, Jim, but NIMBY is the biggest obstacle for prisons.
21:05:36 : <iFred> I wouldn't want to escape from prison in Florence Arizona, but they're building houses there now…
21:05:50 : <Akiraa> apparently, there is a region inside a rotating black hole where orbits are possible, you could live there indefinitely
21:05:59 : <Akiraa> no escape, of course
21:06:14 : <dmac44> Let's see. We could take a large island and make it into a prison ....
21:06:16 : <iFred> Like the Heechee
21:06:38 : <Hippy> Hey!
21:06:39 : <Lensman> Gonna be tough to recruit guards for the prison! :)
21:06:47 : <iFred> Terminal Island, starring Tom Selleck and Marta Kristen
21:06:53 : <Jim> Asscatraz
21:07:07 : <Hippy> Dare I mention. . .?
21:07:24 : <Lensman> dmac: Yes, it's Heinlein's "Coventry" scenario again. Putting it in orbit around a black hole doesn't change much.
21:07:51 : <Lensman> Hmmm, well actually no; you could get a reprieve from Coventry. Not so from the Black Hole prison...
21:07:59 : <dmac44> And that was OZ was originally settled. Right Hippy?
21:08:36 : <Lensman> "Escape from New York". Same idea.
21:08:36 : <dmac44> was how OZ
21:09:01 : <Hippy> Yep!
21:09:08 : <Lensman> Indeed.
21:09:17 : <Hippy> Granted, they moved other settlers in in a few months, but that was the foundation
21:09:35 : <Hippy> Had to put all the prisoners here because the previous dump had rebelled
21:09:43 : <dmac44> lol
21:10:00 : <Hippy> 'Terminal Island' looks interssting, too. I might get it on DVD
21:10:10 : <Lensman> Great idea, too bad they had to spoil it with non-convict colonists.
21:10:49 : <Hippy> Yes, those sheep-rearing scumbags!
21:11:11 : <Lensman> There goes the neighborhood. Durn immigrants!
21:12:09 : <SeanS> DId give us a name for a ship in The Space Seed.
21:12:44 : <Lensman> Great episode. Better sequel.
21:12:56 : <Jim> Coffee Break
21:13:18 : <Hippy> Now there's a KS planet!
21:13:51 : <SeanS> does kinda sound like a name Larry would pick. ;)
21:14:09 : <Lensman> What, "Oz" ?
21:14:11 : <Hippy> The inhabitants are called 'Breakers' and have a reputation for being a little lackadaisical
21:14:17 : <SeanS> Coffee Break
21:14:23 : <dmac44> Oz is slang for Australia
21:14:42 : <Lensman> Or "Botany Bay" ?
21:14:59 : <Hippy> No, 'Coffee Break'
21:15:12 : <Lensman> Or "Terminal Island" ?
21:15:30 : <Lensman> Actually, that does sound like it might be KS name...
21:15:34 : <SeanS> most known space planet names are exactly what I would think slow boat colonists would pick. kind of punch drunk decisions by people overjoyed that they actually made it.
21:16:32 : <Hippy> Lens, is the planet called 'Mt Lookitthat' and the continent Plateau?
21:16:44 : <Hippy> I suppose I should've asked Larry that :)
21:16:53 : <SeanS> backwards, hippy
21:16:58 : <Lensman> No, the planet is called Plateau.
21:17:02 : <Lensman> I think.
21:17:47 : <Hippy> So did I think that, but now I'm not so sure. . .
21:18:20 : <Hippy> In any case, I agree with Sean that the planet names are what the slowboat colonists would pick
21:18:22 : <SeanS> planet Plateau, Mt. Lookaththat the california sized top of the mountain.
21:18:27 : <iFred> I saw "terminal Island "in the theater. It's worth the rental. Not sure I buy it.
21:18:50 : <Hippy> Renting is a little diffiuclt from here
21:18:59 : <Hippy> If only DVD shops were in orbit
21:19:12 : <Hippy> In any case, if Marta Kristen's in it, I'm buying!
21:19:13 : <Lensman> I think "Plateau" is both the name of the planet and the name of the colony. The mountain is, well, just the mountain that happens to be underneath the colony.
21:19:36 : <Hippy> That sounds right
21:19:44 : <Lensman> I'll add "Terminal Island" to my NetFlix queue.
21:20:46 : <Lensman> Or not. NetFlix site down two days in a row? What's up with that?
21:21:10 : <fredskuentz> Marta Kristen talks dirty but no nekkid nudity in Terminal Island
21:21:17 : <Hippy> They';re adding value to the product by withholding supply
21:21:19 : <fredskuentz> for that you need ... um ... Gemini something
21:21:25 : <Lensman> I do need to revise the "Plateau" entry, tho, to note it's the name of both the planet and the colony itself.
21:21:29 : <andy> Lensman: NetFlix is up for me.
21:21:48 : <fredskuentz> Netflix has been having problems with the DVD side
21:21:55 : <fredskuentz> the instant side, not so much
21:22:04 : <Lensman> We have DVD only for NetFlix.
21:22:17 : <fredskuentz> that woudl do it
21:22:27 : <fredskuentz> Gemini Affair 1975
21:22:35 : <Lensman> Almost nothing I wanted to watch was ever on their streaming service.
21:23:05 : <Lensman> Don't see any point in paying more for something I don't use.
21:23:20 : <Hippy> Yes, just spotted that. Thanks for the tip, Fred!
21:23:25 : <fredskuentz> :)
21:23:50 : <Lensman> Besides, I have a very nice home theatre system with audiophile grade speakers. Why would I want to watch a video on my 'puter?
21:23:58 : <Hippy> Isn't it great to see films of the 70's coming out on DVD? I thought it would never happen
21:24:30 : <SeanS> get a wd hd tv live. i fully endorse the product.
21:24:55 : <Jim> I don't like the hair styles of the 1970's, but yes it is good for those movies.
21:25:41 : <dmac44> Going back to the interstellar laser. Wouldn't it depend on the technique you used to modulate the laser? What about frequency modulation (changing the laser frequency very rapidly - I know we can't do this today)?
21:26:17 : <Lensman> We've tried to watch streaming video "HBO to Go" for my Laser Rangers home theatre/movie buff group. Not a success; quality of feed kept dropping to less than HDTV standards.
21:26:23 : "SolBelter" left the channel.
21:26:30 : <Jim> KISS: CW is the easier to understand, but AM is pretty easy also.
21:27:39 : <Lensman> dmac: As I said, at worse you could blink the beam on and off like Morse code. There may be a higher data transmission rate that would work; I personally don't understand what makes radio signals "fuzz out" at interstellar distances.
21:28:13 : <Lensman> And I think we need to have some actual experiments to see what would happen, too.
21:28:26 : <dmac44> Okay, thanks.
21:28:32 : <Lensman> Theory is all very nice, but it doesn't always hold in practice.
21:28:40 : <SeanS> its a theory.. until we get to interstellar distances there is no way to be sure.
21:29:10 : <Hippy> You can extrapolate from the drop in quality of the signal from here to the Moon
21:29:36 : <Hippy> And we know whta our 1970's probes can send back and what we can detect
21:30:17 : <Lensman> Density of interstellar hydrogen is less than that of the "vacuum" between here and Luna.
21:30:43 : <SeanS> we cant laser the probes. i dont think a laser receiver was included in the instrument packages.
21:31:26 : <Jim> We can send a new probe that can be lasered to check the signal degradation.
21:31:31 : <Lensman> And not all areas of the galaxy will be the same. There are dust clouds, such as the one mentioned in "Fly-By-Night".
21:32:29 : <SeanS> unfortunately, a new probe will take 34 years (or so) to get to the distance that the voyagers are now.
21:32:39 : <Lensman> Yup.
21:32:56 : <Lensman> Long-term experiment.
21:33:04 : <Hippy> Well, I can wait. I have a lot of redeing to catch up on
21:33:59 : <Larry> I dozed off. I've been reading, catching up. I don't remember the name situation for Mt Lookitthat: I think it's the planet, with Plateau for the California-sized plateau.
21:34:42 : <Hippy> That's what I thought, but it seems to be referred to in different ways from story to story
21:35:04 : <Hippy> And Lens doesn't like us citing the Ringworld RPG :)
21:35:18 : <Larry> Hippy, how do you catch up on redeing?
21:35:28 : <Jim> Is the RW RPG canon?
21:35:55 : <Lensman> Okay, my bad. Looking at the first page of A GIFT FROM EARTH, "Mt. Lookitthat" is the name of the planet. I think the RINGWORLD RPG has it wrong, then.
21:36:05 : <Hippy> I didn't notice that, Larry! I should learn to spell first!
21:36:51 : <Larry> the Ringworld RPG is not canon. Author added some species to the game. But I used part of the texts for the Man-Kzin Wars canon.
21:37:06 : <Jim> OK
21:37:49 : "RobBennett" joined the channel.
21:37:57 : <Jim> Rob!
21:38:04 : <NickE> Hi Rob
21:38:07 : <Hippy> Happy New Year, Rob
21:38:16 : <RobBennett> Hi, folks. Sorry I'm late.
21:38:21 : <Larry> HNY, Rob.
21:38:22 : "iFred" left the channel.
21:38:26 : <Lensman> Larry: Should the parts you used for the MKW "bible" be considered canon? Or are you considering MKW as separate from KS?
21:38:41 : <Lensman> Welcome Rob.
21:39:39 : <SeanS> Hi Rob
21:40:11 : <Lensman> Also, Larry: In one of your collections, you reprinted a few pages from the RPG, I think it was about "Night People" or Ghouls on the Ringworld? Did you write that, or did Hewett?
21:41:03 : <Larry> Man-Kzin War stories--I intended to keep close watch on canon in these stories, but I failed. Should not have let Benford's warrior puppeteers in. The stories have fuzzed out a little since--but wonderful things have been added too. I love the Jotoki and the use of telepaths. And I had a hand in some stories.
21:41:13 : <Lensman> John Hewitt.
21:41:51 : <Larry> Ghouls: I think he had it right. (I'm not looking at his text.)
21:41:56 : <Akiraa> have there been fan-made games based on known space? either computer or tabletop rpg
21:42:04 : <SeanS> the Jotoki explain a lot about the kzinti
21:42:30 : <Lensman> Larry: Yes, you added Jotoki to the official KS canon in "Fly-By-Night". Interesting how you handled the bit from KMW about the Kzinti taking over the Jotoki empire's tech instead of inventing their own.
21:42:32 : <Akiraa> a ringworld mmo may be interesting
21:42:38 : <Hippy> I don't know about fan-based games, but there is a Ringworld tabletop one
21:43:17 : <Hippy> I'd drop Lord of the Rings Online to play that!
21:43:32 : <Hippy> Well, I
21:43:37 : <Lensman> Akiraa: The RINGWORLD ROLE-PLAYING GAME is a tabletop RPG.
21:43:38 : <Hippy> 'd scale back
21:43:51 : <NickE> and a very good one
21:44:14 : <SeanS> and there are 2 ringworld computer games. good luck getting them to run on modern hardware.
21:44:41 : <Hippy> I can't even find my 'Patriarch's Revenge'
21:44:41 : <Larry> I outlined half the Colebatch story that generated Sheathclaws behind the Patriarchy.
21:44:59 : <NickE> cool
21:45:02 : <Lensman> It's one of the best written and illustrated and organized games I've ever read. Unfortunately it never became very popular. Unfortunately, high tech SF does not lend itself well to adventure gaming. Hard to challenge the characters with anything that's not instantly lethal.
21:45:11 : <RobBennett> Even with Dosbox?
21:45:18 : <Larry> The two Ringworld computer games were lame. It's an unpleasant story.
21:45:25 : <SeanS> I never tried them with dosbox
21:45:36 : <SeanS> wasnt aware of dos box at the time.
21:46:14 : <Jim> What is dosbox?
21:46:16 : <Lensman> I played the first computer game, gave up on the second. Only time I've ever paid money for a game hint for a game. Wasn't possible to figure out one of the puzzles logically.
21:46:23 : <NickE> what I saw of the C games wasn't that great
21:46:35 : <SeanS> i had a copy of the rpg and I think the use of the 'project' model was what turned a lot of people off of it.
21:46:36 : <andy> I never got the one Ringworld game I had to work past a certain point...which was only 20 minutes or so into the game...
21:46:51 : <Larry> I should admit that I'm not a good Gamer. My judgment of a game is not to be taken seriously.
21:47:09 : <RobBennett> It is a dos emulator that allows old-tech dos era games to be played, emulated hardware on modern systems
21:47:20 : <Jim> Thanks
21:47:28 : <Lensman> Yeah, the "project" model for success was not appropriate for a role-playing game.
21:47:33 : <SeanS> dosbox=good stuff
21:47:53 : <NickE> Side note: Im deep into the Rings of Orbis game that someone mentioned on the list awhile back
21:48:29 : <Lensman> I hesitate to give the Ringworld 'puter games a thumbs down. I'm not really into the entire genre. I'll just say I didn't find the first one to have replay value.
21:48:40 : <NickE> Oh ghu yes, the project system was flawed
21:49:14 : <NickE> but teh background and detail was superb and it could be played very sucessfully
21:49:57 : <Lensman> The project model... it's been awhle, but as I recall, the gamemaster sets out a number of tasks you have to accomplish to succeed in the mission. Makes it rather dry, like being assigned paperwork at a desk job. Rather cuts against the tone of adventuring.
21:50:09 : <NickE> agreed
21:50:26 : <NickE> the mechanics could be tweaked to get around that though
21:50:38 : <SeanS> right... it was based on Wu's project to get rid of the sunflowers in engineers i think
21:50:39 : <Lensman> But IMHO that's a minor flaw; any experienced game master could easily throw out that framework.
21:50:44 : <NickE> don't recall now exacrt
21:51:02 : <NickE> exactly how - been about 10 years since I played
21:51:24 : <Hippy> I could never find anyone to play it with. Tyranny of distance ;(
21:51:40 : <Lensman> Yes, the game is worth buying... at least for me... just for the background material. As I said, it's very well organized.
21:51:43 : <SeanS> somebody into gaming could probably easily write a ringworld GURPS module that would play a lot better.
21:51:54 : <NickE> yes, thats pretty much what Dave Gordon did (RW RPG Yahoo group)
21:52:00 : <RobBennett> Thats the problem with most games - no one close enough to play it with
21:52:33 : <Hippy> At least online gaming has solved that. Now it only means I have to stay up till 4AM
21:52:51 : <dmac44> Anyone see the articles about dikes being discovered on the moon by the GRAIL spacecraft? Dikes usually are associated with mineral deposits here on Earth. Reminded me of the Arthur C. Clarke story Earthlight where they mine the moon using a dense fluid to get down deep to where the minerals are.
21:53:34 : <Lensman> dmac: Didn't see that, will have to look for the story online.
21:53:58 : <dmac44> Discovered by gravity maps.
21:54:23 : <dmac44> I think they are down 6 km or more.
21:54:46 : <Hippy> That wouldn't be too deep on the Moon, though
21:55:04 : <Hippy> I presume less gravity means less compresion of the rock and thus less heat in the mine
21:55:09 : <Akiraa> how hot is the interior? can you drill to the core of the moon?
21:55:19 : <dmac44> Probably not though I'm not sure about the depth.
21:55:34 : <Lensman> I meant, look for the news story online. I don't think I've read Clarke's EARTHLIGHT. Is that a novel or a short story?
21:55:43 : <dmac44> Novel.
21:55:46 : <Akiraa> probably much deeper into the mantle than you could on earth
21:56:08 : <Akiraa> and with a dead geology, safer too
21:56:16 : <andy> brief article on moon dikes:
21:56:47 : <Hippy> I like 'moondikes' as a word, though
21:56:59 : <Lensman> No, it's very dangerous! Haven't you read A FALL OF MOONDUST ? :)
21:57:35 : <Jim> Google asked me if I wanted to look for "dykes on the moon."
21:57:41 : <SeanS> heh
21:57:55 : <Hippy> . . .starring Marta Kristen
21:58:01 : <dmac44> lol
21:58:14 : <Lensman> LOL
21:59:58 : <NickE> <fnarf>
22:01:31 : <NickE> sorry, running this ROO game as well
22:01:54 : <Lensman> No, I'm just sitting here thinking about the virtues of the RPG. I don't think I've summarized it well. There is a ton of material there, far more background material than you find in most RPGs.
22:01:55 : <NickE> mostly snrting beer rthru teh nostrils involuntarily
22:02:16 : <SeanS> its great background but poor gameplay
22:02:48 : <Lensman> It's not just that it's well organized, it's that there is so much material there and it's almost all well organized. (Almost... unfortunately the MKW material is rather scattered across several sections.)
22:02:55 : <SeanS> actually a better word for the background is fantastic.
22:03:47 : <Lensman> Indeed.
22:04:05 : <Hippy> And it explains what and who the Pierin are
22:04:20 : <Lensman> But then, Hewitt stole from Larry! :)
22:04:57 : <SeanS> stole is strong... I am sure Larry got a bit of cash out of it.
22:05:01 : <Lensman> Yes... but from what Larry just said, we can't consider the material on the Perein to be canon.
22:05:32 : <Hippy> You're right there, Lens
22:05:54 : <Lensman> Wasn't intended to be taken seriously. Was done with Larry's full cooperation.
22:06:30 : <Lensman> Hewitt describes many sessions sitting down with Larry at various conventions, working out details and resolving discrepancies.
22:06:35 : <NickE> its great work and fun to read on its own, canon or not
22:06:45 : <Lensman> That too!
22:06:57 : <Lensman> Too bad it's out of print. :(
22:07:04 : <Larry> A FALL OF MOONDUST went obsolete when we put up orbital satellites. "Vacuum cementing" prevents Clarke's moondust grains from staying tiny...on the Moon. There's enough atmosphere to make it work on Mars.
22:08:00 : <NickE> hence the Martians
22:10:34 : <Jim> Vacuum cementing actually made the moon landing possible. If the particles of lunar regolith were too small, then objects would sink.
22:11:14 : <Hippy> I thought the lander's exhaust blew all the dust away
22:11:43 : <Jim> ?
22:12:16 : <Lensman> Some, not all by any means. Armstrong and Aldrin's boots left footprints in the dust.
22:12:24 : <Hippy> Didn't it? As the Eagle is landing, the rockets blow all the dust away, so it lands on actual bedrock?
22:12:33 : <Lensman> No.
22:12:48 : <Hippy> Oh ;(
22:12:50 : <Lensman> Did not land on bedrock.
22:13:16 : <Hippy> You learn sometning every month on this channel
22:13:27 : <Jim> true
22:13:31 : <Larry> yeah.
22:13:48 : <Lensman> Indeed!
22:14:06 : <SeanS> no it landed on regolith. just surface dust blew away
22:14:13 : <Lensman> And I just learned from what Larry said about vacuum cementing of moondust.
22:14:48 : <SeanS> the footpads still sunk an inch or so into the surface
22:14:52 : <Lensman> Always wondered why the legs didn't sink down to solid rock.
22:15:04 : <Larry> We learned first about vacuum cementing because we built satellite components smaller than the Russkis.
22:17:27 : <Hippy> My nephew tells me that they have discovered water ice on Mercury
22:17:43 : <dmac44> North pole I think.
22:17:56 : <Hippy> How did it get there?
22:18:14 : <Jim> metal oxides and protons from the sun
22:18:28 : <Larry> I "hear" that too. Water ice in craters at the poles.
22:19:08 : <Jim> M(OH)x
22:19:13 : <Hippy> But surely the poles are too hot for water ice?
22:19:15 : <Larry> hydrogen from the solar wind. oxygen from the rocks.
22:19:42 : <Hippy> Well, where's there's water, there's life :)
22:20:06 : <Lensman> Water ice on Mercury got a "HUH?!?!" from me, too.
22:20:07 : <SeanS> the possibility of life anyway
22:20:12 : <andy> theory I heard is that it was there when the planets formed, and has remained since (very little axial tilt to Mercury, so very little temperature increase from the sun and no seasons to speak of)
22:20:33 : <Jim> Funny, the ancient Hebrews picture of hell was an enormous depth of water
22:21:04 : <dmac44> Ancient ice. I wonder how it would taste in scotch?
22:21:31 : <Hippy> Only one way to find out!
22:21:39 : <dmac44> :)
22:21:50 : <SeanS> i think there is a company that does that with antarctic ice
22:22:02 : <Hippy> IF we leave space exploration to the breweries, we're probably doomed
22:22:18 : <dmac44> or well be really successful.
22:22:39 : <dmac44> we'll
22:22:40 : <Hippy> Or somewhere in between :)
22:23:59 : <Lensman> "And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters."
22:24:14 : <Lensman> "And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so."
22:24:26 : "gofffan" joined the channel.
22:24:28 : <Lensman> "And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day."
22:24:36 : <SeanS> hi goffan
22:24:41 : <gofffan> hey Sean
22:24:42 : <Outsider> gofffan: 02 Dec 03:16Z <fredskuentz> tell gofffan Welcome to the first Niven chat of 2013!
22:24:44 : <Lensman> Definitely a different cosmology!
22:25:03 : <gofffan> honored
22:25:27 : <Lensman> Welcome gofffan!
22:25:34 : <gofffan> LM!
22:25:48 : <Jim> Goffan!
22:25:52 : <gofffan> Hi Jim
22:26:03 : <Lensman> Hey Rob, while I've got you on the line: Any progress on PROTECTOR?
22:26:30 : <Lensman> Not that I have any room to complain if you haven't, as I haven't made progress on WORLD OF PTAVVS.
22:32:23 : <SeanS> so has everyone read fate of worlds?
22:32:31 : <Lensman> I have.
22:32:39 : <gofffan> sadly no
22:33:03 : <SeanS> some interesting twists.
22:33:11 : <SeanS> i got it for christmas
22:34:53 : <Lensman> I thought it was interesting Larry brought up earlier the point about long-range observation by telescope not having played a part in the exploration of space in KS. I always thought it was a weak point in RINGWORLD that the Fleet had to get within 2 lightyears of the Ring before they spotted it! Of course, that was retconned away in RE, but as Larry says, it seems odd that prospective colonies like We Made It and Mt. Lookitthat were not c
22:35:58 : <Lensman> But as I see it, either you accept the background for a story, or you don't.
22:36:11 : <RobBennett> I've been going in to the hospital for some medical treatments. I'll be able to commit to spending more time this month on getting some work done. Since protector is one of my favorite stories, it will be easier for me to get to.
22:36:34 : <Lensman> Willing suspension of disbelief is usually if not always required for SF.
22:36:38 : <SeanS> protector is probably my favorite
22:37:12 : <Lensman> I think Rob will agree with you on that.
22:37:29 : <RobBennett> I just did!
22:37:53 : <SeanS> I like the slower than light universe of niven more than the hyperspace parts
22:38:05 : <Lensman> And for another long-time friend, it's World of Ptavvs. That's the first novel by Larry that he read; RINGWORLD was my first and is still my favorite. Coincidence? I think not!
22:38:18 : <SeanS> except for the bey stories... they have always been a biggie for me
22:38:38 : <Lensman> Rob: To repeat my question, any progress on indexing PROTECTOR ?
22:39:16 : <fredskuentz> Hi Gofff!
22:39:29 : <Lensman> Yup, the first three of Bey's stories are among my very favorites.
22:39:37 : <RobBennett> Forthcoming this month. I've had some trips to the hopspital that have taken me some time away from the projoect.
22:39:48 : <gofffan> Fred!! I just ordered Fate of Worlds. If Amazon could deliver it directly into my cortex, I could discuss it now.
22:40:02 : <Lensman> Sorry to hear that, Rob. We'll have to exchange e-mails for details.
22:40:06 : <Hippy> They're working on that
22:40:21 : <Lensman> heh
22:40:24 : <Hippy> Unfortunaely, your cortex is regarded as part of Canada for DMCA purposes
22:40:39 : <gofffan> Ha!
22:40:59 : <gofffan> Rob - follow the doctors orders!
22:41:03 : <Lensman> Finagle take all corporate protectionism!
22:42:24 : <RobBennett> Is that Finagle take all corporate doctors orders?
22:42:44 : <gofffan> No ooooooooooo!
22:42:51 : <Lensman> Really amazes me that patent protection is still 20 years, but copyright is now lifetime of the author/artist plus 75 years, or some such ridiculous length of time.
22:43:15 : <gofffan> Bernie Madoff time
22:43:31 : <Lensman> I think even Finagle might follow doctor's orders. :)
22:43:44 : <Hippy> We differ there, Lens. I think copyright should be perpetual. But it shouldn't be used to prevent me getting a book, movie etc
22:44:21 : <Hippy> And as for 'derivative work', a pox on it!
22:44:52 : <gofffan> homage
22:45:17 : <Hippy> That's another word for 'lawsuit'
22:46:10 : <Lensman> But all works are drivative works, to a greater or lesser extent. All stories have been told; we can only tell variations on what older storytellers have spun. Copyright in perpetuity would make it impossible to have any new stories, because they all use elements of older stories.
22:47:05 : <Hippy> Copyright doesn't protect elements of older stories, though
22:47:42 : <Hippy> For example, the estate of L Frank Baum can't sue Larry for Ringworld, even though there are thematic similarities in RW and Wiezard of Oz
22:47:43 : <dmac44> Pay royalities to Adam and Eve or Homo Habilis?
22:47:47 : <Lensman> Sure it does. You can't publish a sequel to a work in copyright, without the author's permission.
22:47:54 : <Hippy> Nor can MGM, for that matter
22:48:12 : <SeanS> explain halo then Lensman ;)
22:48:42 : <Hippy> A sequel would be using copyrighted words from the original, otherwise it woulnd't be a sequel
22:48:46 : <Lensman> Sean: Larry doesn't pay his lawyers as well as Disney does. :)
22:49:10 : <SeanS> as good an answer as any i guess.
22:49:31 : <Hippy> I could quite easily write 'Cornardhon' and feature Lance Wang, Talker to Beasts and whoemver and you couldn't touch me
22:50:07 : <Lensman> Seriously: Okay, I'm playing with the ideas here. Obviously there is a legal difference between a similar concept and using the same exact setting and characters from a work in copyright.
22:50:25 : <Hippy> If I use the term 'starhoop' to describe what these people are exploring, I'm safe
22:50:57 : <Hippy> Yes, there is a legal difference
22:51:18 : <SeanS> lets get off this legal crap and go back to concept.
22:51:32 : <Dan> Back from Atlanta.
22:51:33 : <Jim> Dan!
22:51:36 : <SeanS> welcome back from catlanta, dan
22:51:38 : <Hippy> Dan!!
22:51:47 : <dmac44> You can't call it the Ringworld but can you call it a ringworld?
22:51:47 : <gofffan> hello Dan
22:51:49 : <Hippy> The Sultan of Derivative Work!
22:51:53 : <Dan> Now the real work begins, LOL!
22:51:54 : <NickE> hey Dan, HNY
22:52:12 : <Hippy> Still researching 'Went with the Breezee' in Atlanta?
22:52:47 : <Hippy> "Crimson O'Reilly looked up at her father's mansion."
22:53:07 : <Lensman> But the original purpose of copyright, at least as it's explained in our Constitution, is "To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries."
22:53:08 : <Dan> No, picking up a free washer & dryer from some friends who didn't want to pay to have them shipped to Seattle when they move there in two weeks.
22:53:27 : <Hippy> Dmac: probably you coulnd't call it a rngworld, as the term originated in the novel. So, 'starhoop'
22:54:08 : <Lensman> Copyright in perpetuity would stifle creativity in the same way that patent in perpetuity would stifle invention. If manufacturers had to pay a royalty on common fasterners such as nuts, bolts and screws, nobody would ever be able to afford to buy a car.
22:54:45 : <Dan> Now I have to take a door & its trim work down to get our old W&D out of the bathroom, then get them both outside, then get the new ones off the truck & inside, and hook 'em up.
22:54:48 : <Hippy> The market would sort that out, Lens
22:55:11 : <SeanS> what are you doing with the old washer?
22:55:20 : <Hippy> Copyright and patent don't specify ow much royalties to pay, and the inventor or author can always say 'no' to anyroyalties
22:55:26 : <dmac44> Hippy: Alastair Reynolds did in HOUSE OF SUNS.
22:55:40 : <Dan> Giving it away. It needs a new clutch so it'll spin the close out.
22:55:50 : <Dan> clothes
22:56:08 : <Lensman> What motive would the copyright/patent holder ever have for saying "No"? Selfishness is part of our genes.
22:56:15 : <Jim> dmac44, please explain
22:56:20 : <SeanS> never mind then.... twould be an excuse for a party but if it is goofed, never mind.
22:56:37 : <Hippy> I don't know, Lens. How much did Larry charge you ro put his stories up on the site?
22:56:54 : <Hippy> Estates can lapse, corporations go bankrupt etc
22:57:05 : <Lensman> Copyright for limited periods of time is promoting the common good. Copyright in perpetuity is the exact opposite.
22:57:30 : <Lensman> Hippy: I haven't put any of his stories up on my site.
22:57:30 : <dmac44> Reynolds used the term ringworlds in his book.
22:57:46 : <Hippy> Sorry, I meant
22:58:03 : <Hippy> I don't know who runs that. The point is that the author can be generous
22:58:07 : <SeanS> any story on is authorized
22:58:23 : <SeanS> I am a member of the staff.
22:58:29 : <Lensman> Not a penny. Those were ones that Larry thinks have no commercial value, or at least that is my impression from what he's said.
22:58:31 : <Hippy> And presumably without paying a royalty, right?
22:58:50 : <Hippy> Reynolds could be sued, but suing isn't automatic
22:59:03 : <dmac44> royalty free licenses are not uncommon.
22:59:11 : <Lensman> There is an exeption to every rule, Hippy. But exceptions don't mean the general rule is bad.
22:59:21 : <dmac44> I'd argue that the term ringworld is like xerox.
22:59:37 : <gofffan> xerox sues
23:00:03 : <Hippy> You're right, Lens. In general people wouldn't release stuff and would demand royalties. So what? Royalties might be miniscule
23:00:12 : <dmac44> We say I'm going to xerox something to mean copy. Xerox doesn't sue for that.
23:00:38 : <Hippy> Or 'hoover' to vacuum.
23:00:39 : <gofffan> no, only in an official ad or in print.
23:00:40 : <Lensman> Xerox is a trademark, you can't use it like a common word. Xerox corp. spends a lot of money making sure every dictionary uses it with a capital letter, and maybe the registered trademark symbol after it.
23:01:01 : <gofffan> so does Chanel
23:01:02 : <Jim> dmac44, that is a natural consequence of nearly 100% market share
23:01:11 : <Hippy> Trademark holders do styruggle to protect their trademarks. Johnson & Johnson over 'band-aid' was one exmaple here
23:01:43 : <dmac44> I don't think they ahve the largest market share. Think Asian manufacturers.
23:01:44 : <Lensman> Xerox doesn't have thought police, but in any publication from a commercial publisher, Xerox had better be capitalized!
23:01:44 : <Larry> my wife has summoned me to grocery-shop. I go.
23:01:51 : <dmac44> Bye Larry.
23:01:55 : <gofffan> Bye
23:01:56 : <SeanS> thanks for stopping in Larry
23:01:57 : <Lensman> Bye Larry
23:02:00 : <Dan> Bye, Larry!
23:02:11 : <Hippy> 'Bye, Larry!
23:02:14 : <Jim> Xerox, used to have nearlty 100% market share. Bye Larry.
23:02:20 : "Larry" left the channel.
23:02:27 : <gofffan> Isn't Sherlock Holmes public domain?
23:02:35 : <Lensman> Yes.
23:02:52 : <Hippy> Let's invent the word 'Marilynate' so that she can get a royalty on 'the action of summoning to grocery shop'
23:03:06 : <Hippy> Yep!
23:03:12 : <Dan> Lens, I thought the character is, but the stories aren't. Did I misunderstand?
23:03:26 : <Hippy> Which is why, if you do a Sherlock Holmes story, only the movie studio sues you
23:03:52 : <SeanS> have fun talking copyright stuff... Dan, when it turns to more interesting topics skype me.
23:04:10 : <Lensman> I remember a story from a newspaper reporter, she said that someone used the word "frisbee" in a news story. That reporter got a stern letter from the... I think Hasbro company, warning that the name was a trademark and should always be capitalized in print. Accompanying the letter was an actual Frisbee. Within a month, all the other reporters in her pool found an excuse to work the word "frisbee" into their stories...
23:04:27 : <Dan> I'll be busy. I'm just taking a short break before getting to work on the W&D.
23:04:33 : <dmac44> I just looked at the Merriam-Webster online dictionary. xerox as a verb has no trademark.
23:04:49 : <SeanS> damn
23:05:06 : <gofffan> copy that
23:05:25 : <SeanS> nick... do what i ask dan to do
23:05:43 : <Lensman> Sherlock Holmes is in the public domain, period. In toto. Anybody can write and publish a Sherlock Holmes story. And that's a great example of why copyright in perpetuity is a really bad idea. Just think of all the marvelous Holmes stories that have been written since the copyright lapsed! Including the "Sherlock" series from BBC... one of the very best series ever on TV.
23:06:37 : <Hippy> So, why couldn't the BBC have paid the Estate of Sir ACD a royalty?
23:06:54 : <gofffan> The character has become a concept, open to interpretation. I like it.
23:06:57 : <Lensman> Hard to see how a movie studio could sue for you doing a SH story, unless you used specific elements from their movie's setting or story.
23:07:28 : <Hippy> Because they could argue that the movies are not in the public domain and therefore you derived from the movies
23:07:43 : <Hippy> You could always argue back, of course
23:07:45 : <Dan> WHat I meant was that I was under the impression that Conan Doyle's own Holmes stories were lisenced for productions by the estate, but the characters from his stories were now PD.
23:07:46 : <Lensman> Xerox is capitalized in my MW print dictionary, but no trademark symbol after it.
23:07:49 : <gofffan> Caleb Carr wrote 'The Italian Secretary' under the auspicies of the estate. But he could have done so without the go ahead.
23:08:50 : <Lensman> If the estate of Doyle still owned a copyright on SH, then the BBC would have to get permission, and the estate might demand veto power or even creative control.
23:09:16 : <Hippy> Indeed they could, and might
23:09:28 : <Dan> So someone could write new Holmes stories, but if they wanted to do a movie or TV ahow of Study In Scarlet, they's have to buy the rights from the estate.
23:09:40 : <dmac44> Guys, I've got to run. Bye.
23:09:48 : <Hippy> Bye, Dmac
23:10:03 : "dmac44" left the channel.
23:10:06 : <Lensman> Or just say "No" altogether. Just as Watterson, who created Calvin & Hobbs, has nixed any merchandise. Any C&H T-shirt, or that obnoxious decal on the rear window of the pickup in front of you on the road... that's all pirate merchandise.
23:10:06 : <gofffan> Bye
23:11:14 : <Lensman> Dan: If SH was still in copyright, yes. But it's out of copyright, so the "Sherlock Holmes" series has been able to dramatize every single SH story w/o paying a dime in royalties.
23:11:22 : <Hippy> Well, perhaps a more perfect copyright law would remove the power of veto from the holder, but insist on some form of royaltiy
23:12:24 : <Hippy> But I can cite Dan here, who wrote a story in which Martians invaded the Earth using tripods, then changed it to avoid complications with derivatve work. Even though the Martians and tripods concept comes from a public domain work
23:13:23 : <Dan> I've also written one that featers Holmes & Watson as characters.
23:13:29 : <Dan> features
23:13:35 : <Hippy> You evil. . .
23:13:42 : <Dan> I am, yes.
23:13:45 : <Lensman> dmac: Oops, I didn't look carefully enough. You're right, even in my print dictionary, there is a second entry for "xerox" as a verb, not capitalized. I guess Xerox needs to fire its lawyers...
23:13:47 : <Hippy> Just don't put Mickey Mouse in it, or you're doomed
23:14:13 : <Dan> Donald duck was in one, as was Daffy & Howard.
23:14:16 : <Dan> :)
23:14:28 : <Hippy> Lanolin, corn flakes, zipper - all once patented, now just words
23:14:46 : <gofffan> Eric von Zipper
23:15:10 : <Lensman> WAR OF THE WORLDS is still in copyright in the UK, or just came out last year. It's been out of copyright in the USA for some time now.
23:15:13 : <Hippy> Ah, yes. . .just watched 'How to Stuff a Wild Bikini' yesterday
23:15:39 : <Hippy> Interesting, Lens
23:15:46 : <Lensman> Also refrigerator and typewriter, once trade names.
23:15:50 : <gofffan> WOTW originated in GB. That why?
23:15:52 : <Hippy> Wells died in 1946
23:16:13 : <Dan> Quite a lot of the concept of my spaceport bar series is to use familiar & unfamiliar literary characters in ways that don't get me sued. Doc Savage, Blake & Avon, the Lost In Space robot...
23:16:20 : <Hippy> I would've thought the copyright lapsed in 1996, if not earlier
23:16:48 : <gofffan> Speaking of use of real and imaginary characters in one story -- Riverworld.
23:17:06 : <Hippy> Good one
23:17:07 : <Dan> Exactly!
23:17:12 : <Lensman> gofffan: The USA and the UK (or the European union) have different rules on copyright. It's very complicated, depends on when the original copyright was issued and some other factors; you need a chart.
23:17:26 : <gofffan> Thanks
23:17:50 : <Dan> OK, off to do carpentry, then play "moving van-man!"
23:18:08 : <Hippy> I lvoe that game
23:18:19 : <Hippy> It was one of thw more esoteric RPGs'
23:18:24 : <Hippy> Never took off
23:18:38 : <gofffan> one word - 'back-brace' (well, hyphenated)
23:19:41 : <Lensman> Now, the one that is -really- interesting is the copyright on PETER PAN. The UK's Parliament gave it a copyright in perpetuity (because royalties benefit a famous children's hospital). So it will always be in copyright in the UK, forever. Contrariwise, an act of Parliament has no force in the USA, so it's not in copyright here. Hence, any sequel to Peter Pan could be pubished, or released as a film, here in the USA... but not in the UK wit
23:20:30 : <gofffan> The opening of the Olympics certainly drowned that fact in with a mallet.
23:20:33 : <Lensman> I keep hearing about the game of "Paperwork and Paychecks", an RPG played by bored adventurers in fantasy realms. But I've never seen the actual game...
23:20:52 : <gofffan> Never heard of it.
23:21:04 : <Hippy> It would be a good project, though :)
23:21:19 : <Hippy> Sic Rick Cook onto it, if he were still writing fiction
23:21:22 : <Lensman> Too mundane for me.
23:23:24 : <SeanS> as is copyright discussion for me
23:23:48 : <Lensman> Yeah, I fear this has been gone over too many times for Niven forum regulars.
23:23:49 : <Hippy> Well, what would you like to talk about?
23:24:17 : <Hippy> Yes, I think you're right there, Lens. I could talk about it for hours, but it probably bores a lot of people
23:24:23 : <SeanS> underground colonies on planets and moons that we can reach was cool
23:24:35 : <Lensman> But you've got me curious about the opening to the Olympics. Was there an explanation about PETER PAN and its relation to the children's hospital? I remember the sequence with kids in beds.
23:24:54 : <gofffan> Yes. That's what it was all about.
23:25:03 : <SeanS> so was orbital mining with NEO
23:25:25 : <Hippy> Well, both of those are in the public domain. . .
23:25:38 : <gofffan> I think moons are where it's at since habitable planets are just too far afield, so to speak.
23:26:19 : <Lensman> Well, I'd like to talk about why telescopes are not used to survey planets at intererstellar distances in Known Space. Different physics? A bit of dust mixed in with the interstellar hydrogen, that makes observing anything less bright than a star impossible?
23:26:33 : <SeanS> mars is a planet and not too far away
23:26:52 : <gofffan> I think time is the problem. And yes, Mars is good.
23:27:02 : <Hippy> If you argue that it's better to send data than genetic material via ramrobot, you then have to question the economics of getting people to the colony worlds in the first place. But if you have people there to send data to, then sending actual material is at least justifiable
23:27:43 : <Lensman> Anyone living on Mars would have to live like a mole, almost never going out. And the fine dust described in RED MARS sounds like a nightmare. Who would want to live there?
23:28:25 : <gofffan> Hey, has NASA put amicrophone on MArs?
23:29:00 : <Lensman> Same problem with an O'Neil colony. The amount of regimentation that would be required to keep the ecology stable... forget about the idea of leaving earth for freedom elsewhere. You'd have to live like an army recruit in barracks, told what to do every minute of the day.
23:29:01 : <SeanS> goffan, there is a sound track of the latest lander landing
23:29:08 : <SeanS> so yes
23:29:28 : <gofffan> thx
23:29:46 : <gofffan> I agree. it would have to be a military type set-up.
23:30:04 : <Hippy> People who wanted a regimented existence would go there to escape the tyranny of freedom
23:30:14 : <Hippy> Or a monastic setup
23:30:19 : <Lensman> Even in Known Space, colonies are not started for economic reasons. They're started because of a basic primal urge by mankind to expand his territory, or to not have all his eggs in one basket.
23:30:23 : <gofffan> Alien 3
23:30:33 : <Lensman> Monastic, yeah, that could work.
23:30:54 : <Lensman> That could be a realistic setup. Monastics that want to live Elsewhere.
23:31:03 : <Hippy> Exactly, Lens. The economics of setting up the colonies are irrelevant - or rather, the cost is
23:31:04 : <SeanS> goffan, google curiosity hi def landing and see if you can find it.
23:31:21 : <gofffan> I'm on it.
23:32:11 : <Hippy> 'Curiosity'? They've not yet run out of astronomers, but the probe names sound like baketball teams
23:32:27 : <SeanS> i did not name it
23:32:46 : <Hippy> No, but you let it happen :)
23:32:51 : <Lensman> Right, the cost of sending the colony ship cannot be supported by the profit motive. But sending follow-on missions and cargo is still extremely expensive. Even for idealistic reasons, resources are limited.
23:33:01 : <gofffan>
23:33:07 : <Akiraa> nasa has a bad case of acronymia
23:33:45 : <Akiraa> frontier incentives are not just about economic calculation
23:33:50 : <SeanS> hmm, 3 years ago when it was launched i think i was having a great time with multiple women and booze.... naming the mars rover was not a priority for me
23:33:56 : <Akiraa> people may move to space just to be there
23:34:09 : <Akiraa> even if economically they'd be worse off
23:34:42 : <Hippy> Okay, you're excused, Sean. But the rest of you Americans. . .
23:34:58 : <gofffan> i agree. the call of the unknown.
23:35:10 : <Hippy> Gold in them thar asteroids
23:35:26 : <Akiraa> freedom
23:36:18 : <Hippy> At the moment we don't think of frontiers because we don't have any. The Web, as outlined in. . .Destiny's Road? seems more likely. But once we're in the asteroids, we might get the frontier urge again
23:36:27 : <Akiraa> freedom from prosecution and the freedom to prosecute :p
23:37:01 : <Hippy> Larry was right in thinking that the motivations common to the US back then will still be motivations in the future (and prison colinies)
23:37:50 : <Jim> freedom from persecution and freedom to persecute?
23:38:14 : <Akiraa> yeah, like the puritans
23:38:29 : <gofffan> look how that ended
23:38:47 : <Hippy> Look at its modern resurgence, though
23:39:00 : <Hippy> Liberia is another good example
23:39:39 : <Hippy> Ah, here's something that you will be more experrt on than me
23:39:56 : <Hippy> A discussion cmae up the other day about these 'blue sky' projects
23:40:59 : <Hippy> (Thsi was in relation to tax administration, admittedly, but anyway. . .) Now, it was stated that many of our great technological breakthroughs have come from 'blue sky' projects and that people who say 'why are we paying to research that?' are wrong to say it
23:41:33 : <gofffan> Pure R&D works. NASA's early days did it.
23:41:36 : <SeanS> no argument here
23:41:45 : <Hippy> I was gong to say that people expect more accuntability these days, and are confident enough in modern management to think we can manage scientific research towards a set goal
23:41:48 : <fredskuentz> Reading back
23:41:57 : <fredskuentz> How long has Holmes been PD?
23:42:11 : <fredskuentz> Didn't Trek TNG get in trouble and have to stop using Moriarity?
23:42:30 : <SeanS> fred, please dont get lensman back into copyright bs
23:42:31 : <gofffan> that was Wesley
23:42:35 : <Hippy> Okay, so, what inventions, breakthroughs, techniques or whatever have been generated by BS - er, not a good acronum there - in recent times?
23:42:42 : <Hippy> I couldnt' think of any
23:42:46 : <fredskuentz> LOL, sorry Sean
23:43:13 : <SeanS> ;)
23:43:48 : <fredskuentz> I definitely won't mention how completely I disagree with him then!
23:44:01 : <Hippy> So, I was gtoing to argue against 'blue sky' on the basis that it really hasn't giving us anything since the invention of liquid crystal, but maybe I'm wrong
23:44:34 : <gofffan> gave us a flag in the moon
23:44:39 : <SeanS> ok, define blue sky
23:44:40 : <gofffan> on
23:45:27 : <Hippy> So, you'd say the Moon landing was 'blue sky'
23:45:35 : <fredskuentz> I think that just depends on whether you're a cat person
23:45:43 : <fredskuentz> and think a box of dead cat is good or bad
23:46:04 : <gofffan> no - just the denoument of a lot of R&D. Blue Sky is another matter. sorry
23:46:26 : <Hippy> Yes. I had thought the whole idea of the analogy was that the cat is both dead and alive until you open the box
23:46:38 : <Lensman> I just don't see that settlling "the final frontier" will at all be the same. SF writers like to write about it as if that will be true. Heinlein wrote THE MOON IS A HARSH MISTRESS as analogies for the settling of the Australia penal colony, plus the American Revolution.
23:46:43 : <Hippy> Exactly, gofffan
23:47:05 : <Hippy> R&D is a good thing, but is at least directed towards a goal
23:47:26 : <Lensman> But the high cost of sending a settler to another planet or another star will demand that we send the best and brightests. Not the outcasts and economic failures that were the settlers of frontiers in our history.
23:47:44 : <SeanS> see that is the problem with nasa since 1972. no goal
23:48:11 : <Hippy> Agreed, Sean
23:48:19 : <Lensman> Exactly, no goal for manned space exploration beyond the moon. Mars is too hard and will take too long with current tech.
23:48:42 : <gofffan> The shuttle was a mistake, to me
23:48:59 : <fredskuentz> in concept or execution?
23:49:03 : <gofffan> low Earth orbit. stuck in space
23:49:14 : <gofffan> good for sending satellites aloft
23:49:20 : <fredskuentz> what if congress hadn't gotten to mess with it and it had been wonderful instead?
23:49:22 : <Hippy> How high a cost, Lens? The nation of Scotland expended 2/3 of its GDP to establish a colony in Darien. The colony failed, but Scotland still gave it a shot. (Niall Ferguson in 'The Ascent of Money')
23:49:27 : <SeanS> when my gf's kid evan was 9, he asked me why we are not on mars yet. without thinking, i said 'because congress is a bunch of pussies'
23:49:41 : <fredskuentz> lol
23:50:00 : <Dan> Amen!
23:50:01 : <NickE> ditto LOL
23:50:02 : <gofffan> no guts ...
23:50:07 : <SeanS> he regurgitated that later that day and i got a frantic phone call. but i believe it is accurate
23:50:08 : <fredskuentz> no gory
23:50:32 : <Lensman> Shuttle was a failure because the original concept had to be abandoned. Had to get support from the military, which demanded a much larger shuttle. And various other meddling by Congress made it a design by committee. "The camel is a horse as designed by a committee."
23:50:49 : <Dan> "There's no graft to be made for congressmen from a space program that actually does something."
23:51:02 : <Lensman> And that's a good analogy. What we wanted was a horse; what we got was a camel.
23:51:03 : <fredskuentz> vandenberg still has their secret long range shuttle program in operation though right?
23:51:20 : <SeanS> i talked with peter taylor about the shuttle. peter is carol phillips husband for anyone that doesnt know
23:52:04 : <Akiraa> the US military planned a secret space station for spy purposes, but it turns out robotic satellites are much cheaper
23:52:08 : <fredskuentz> Can I just take a moment here to mention that Sheila Jackson Lee is too stupid to be allowed to run loose?
23:52:08 : <Lensman> Hippy: As always, there are exceptions to every rule. (Including this one!)
23:52:18 : <SeanS> i asked why the big truck instead of the saturn 5 for heavy liftt and a small space plane for crew and he said that that was what all the engineers wanted.
23:53:27 : <fredskuentz> look up Sheila Jackson Lee and Neil Armstrong and Mars and Flag
23:53:32 : <gofffan> engineers design tv remotes. look at those
23:54:24 : <SeanS> depends on the remote
23:54:26 : <Lensman> Well, obviously I'd be an idiot to argue with Peter about the Shuttle. I thought it was the military or CIA that wanted a big truck for the spy satellites, but maybe not. I thought the original idea for the SS was much smaller.
23:54:30 : <SeanS> some better than othes
23:54:48 : <Hippy> Just reading on the Wikipedia. This is what happens when you give women the vote
23:54:58 : <SeanS> it was... the airforce demanded more cargo space
23:55:01 : <SeanS> stupid
23:55:17 : <SeanS> does look great going up
23:55:22 : <gofffan> X-15 should never have been shelved
23:55:38 : <Akiraa> solid rocket boosters for human transportation, always a shakey proposition
23:55:43 : <Lensman> The only remote I've ever owned that was backlit, which they all should be, was my Pioneer laserdisc remote. And even that only had a few buttons backlit.
23:55:54 : <fredskuentz> yeah, wtf
23:55:57 : <Hippy> See? This is my equivalent of copyright
23:56:09 : <fredskuentz> why are HALF the buttons on my TV remote backlit???
23:56:09 : <Akiraa> look at spacex, it can cancel liftoff a few seconds after ignition (quite amazing)
23:56:32 : <SeanS> spacex is rocking.... i have good thoughts for them
23:56:40 : <fredskuentz> They skipped the numerics? Really?
23:56:54 : <Hippy> Imagine an SAT question: 'copyright is to Sean as what is to Hippy?'
23:56:54 : <gofffan> 6 second lag?
23:56:58 : <Akiraa> can still go to orbit with a bad engine and can survive 2 engines exploding
23:57:11 : <Lensman> SpaceX is doing it right. If you want to know what's wrong with using Lockheed Martin, Boeing et al to built spacecraft, just read LEO ON THE CHEAP.
23:57:38 : <Akiraa> United Launch Alliance screams monopoly
23:57:49 : <Lensman> Google it, you can get the full text as a .pdf online. But choose the full document for download, one of the smaller files is messed up.
23:57:51 : <SeanS> i will make a not of that sooby
23:57:57 : <Akiraa> they let spacex in the door just so they don't look like they give all contracts to lockheed&boeing
23:58:04 : <SeanS> note
23:58:33 : <gofffan> SpaceX is a great concept. A vertical company, all in house. Wunerful.
23:58:41 : <SeanS> yeah
23:58:43 : <Lensman> That's unfair, Akiraa. SpaceX is being given the chance to compete, and in fact LM is pissed about that. War of words recently.
23:58:54 : <SeanS> spacex is kicking the shit out of nasa right now.
23:59:17 : <Lensman> Indeed, and it's way past time that happened.
23:59:56 : <Akiraa> man-rating a whole new rocket is going to be expensive