* Posts by Doug Burbidge

6 posts • joined 11 Oct 2011

'It's NOT FAIR!' yell RICH KIDS ... and that's a GOOD THING

Doug Burbidge

"in poor, pretty much non-market societies, a $99 to $1 split would be accepted."

Can you offer a citation for this? Because I'm not finding one. In fact, running slightly in the opposite direction, offerers in Mongolia tend to offer a more even split.


Reg Oz chaps plot deep desert comms upgrade

Doug Burbidge

Re: Possible onsite proxy/filter

If filtering is a requirement, take a look at ContentKeeper. They're Australian, so they might be able to come to the party cost-wise, and (last time I dealt with them, a decade ago), their tech does not suck.

Reg hacks confront really wide Oz load terror

Doug Burbidge

I saw tanks going the other way up the Stuart highway in 2009, on the back of trucks (the military kind of tank, that is). Clearly they had run their batteries flat and were being forced to trailer to the next checkpoint.

World Solar combatants rev their engines batteries

Doug Burbidge

Internet cafes

Internet cafés are not infrequent, so if your own internet access fails, you can try these. In the past I've written on a laptop and then used a thumb drive to copy my writing to a café computer and posted that way.

At the very least there are internet cafés in Tennant Creek and Alice Springs.

Solar car teams bask in Darwin sunshine

Doug Burbidge

> as tight as their vehicle's cockpit

That cockpit actually looks quite roomy: his legs are apart, his knees are not much higher than his hips, the bubble looks like there's room to turn his head.

The really interesting thing this challenge will be: will it be won by a car with a conventional flat solar array, or will it be won by a car which has part of its array fed by solar concentrators? There's 9-ish square meters of available surface on a 1.8m x 5m car, but the rules only allow 6 square metres of cells. But they _do_ allow you to use concentrators, such as Fresnel lenses or parabolic reflectors to focus that extra 3 square metres of sun onto a very small area of gallium arsenide cells.

El Reg follows World Solar Challenge

Doug Burbidge

> Northern Territory imposes a distinctly unchallenging top speed of 110km/h.

As of 2009, the NT limit was 130 km/h: still fast enough to be challenging for even the fastest cars (though you do have to slow for towns, including the 40 km/h school zone in Tennant Creek). South Australia, OTOH, is indeed 110 km/h (less in towns).

> There are towns and road stops every 100km-200km.

South of Alice Springs this may be... optimistic. Get a copy of the route notes. Each team will be given one at the meeting one or two days before the start; keep an eye on the notice board at Foskey Pavilion. Or they may join the 21st century and publish the route notes online.

Best phone coverage is via Telstra's Next G network, which is 3G on a lower frequency (850 MHz) so the cells reach further. It's proprietary to Australia, but you might be able to pick up a phone and/or wireless internet dongle for it at a reasonable price.


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