* Posts by Dave Walker

78 publicly visible posts • joined 10 Sep 2007


Cocky SpaceX will try another sea landing with next rocket launch

Dave Walker

Re: They land back to earh requires an ungodly amount of fuel

Instead of drogue chutes Space-X use "supersonic grid fins" that look kind of like fly swatters to slow down the booster. You can see them at the top of the booster.

Winning a brand new BOFH T-Shirt is as simple as...

Dave Walker
Thumb Up

I prefer the Bloke

Well done!

$17,000 Apple Watch: Pointless bling, right? HA! You're WRONG

Dave Walker

Re: Lux Interior

I was right on your heels for that!


FCC Republicans slam brakes on net neutrality, but this wagon ain't slowing

Dave Walker

Republicans and DoubleSpeek "Freedom"

Net Neutrality = Government tells ("regulates") ISPs that all traffic has to be treated equally.

Not "Micromanaging" the ISPs business.

"Freedom" of the small up and starting business to have the same access to customers as large established companies.

Certain vocal Republicans seem to equate the enforcement of equal treatment as a threat to "Freedom"; be it access to the internet, marriage, or lunch counters.

Buses? PAH. Begone with your filthy peasant-wagons

Dave Walker

Re: The best urban transport

And "Umber" is from the Latin for "Shadow".

Bumbershoot anyone? Hello...?

The Germans call it romantically a "Reigenschirm" or "Rain Shield"...

Renault Twingo: Small, sporty(ish), safe ... and it's a BACK-ENDER

Dave Walker

Re: Reanult has a problem, called 'marketing' - it isn't the cubes

Electric motors driving each wheel, and a small *turbine* used to top up the battery when it drops below a certain level.

All the benefits of electric drive.

Smaller Battery required

Turbine runs at optimum load and only when necessary.

Reduced weight and complexity.

Why has no one done this?

Vote NOW for LOHAN's arboreal avoidance algorithm acronym

Dave Walker

Number 5: The Larch - Almost!

But BETTYFORD fits the them better, it was a HARD choice.

Jony Ive: Apple iWatch will SCREW UP Switzerland's economy

Dave Walker

When a design is essentially perfect why change it?

The fact that products look similar from generation to generation is a sign of good design and forward thinking and vision.

It is the a function of a coherent design language that newer models look similar to previous generations.

The classic Porsche, Volvo, the first three generations of VW water cooled cars. The list could go on.

Boeing to start work on most powerful rocket ... EVER!

Dave Walker

Re: Scary stuff...

The RS-25/SSME is a better engine. Besides, NASA and some engineering students are in the process of resurrecting a remaining F-1 and notes how crude the construction is compared to today's engines.


NASA: Vote now to put flashy lights on future spacesuits

Dave Walker

Didn't like the exposed joints

The Tech and Society suits looked better, I was surprised that only the Bio suit had fabric covering the joints.

Just wondering about planetary dust and grit......

I agree with the idea of subtle navigational lighting.

Coat? Of course: we're talking space coats :-P

SpaceX set to try HOVER LANDING for re-usable rockets on March ISS mission

Dave Walker

Beat me to it!

Although all of the "Reusable" components of STS required such extensive refurbishment it may have been cheaper to build them new!

Netflix speed index shows further decline in Verizon quality

Dave Walker

Empirical Victim of Verizon FiOS throttling of Netflix CDN (Content Delivery Network)

A year and a half ago we changed over from Comcast (coax cable virtual monopoly) to Verizon FiOS (Fi bre O ptic S ervice).

Since the change we have noticed a significant decline in the quality of our streaming video from Netflix; much buffering and lower resolution images.

From what we can tell it is a problem with the Verizon FiOS Content Delivery Network

Not Happy.

Seriously considering changing back at the end of our contract.

Disgruntled in Philadelphia, PA

Foot-loving cat burglar nicks THREE THOUSAND individual socks

Dave Walker

Living in my dryer!

That explains everything....

Haswell micro: Intel’s Next Unit of Computing desktop PC

Dave Walker

Built in AC a big plus

Agreed! We just replaced a perfectly serviceable Mini of the previous generation partly just to get rid of the extra brick. With the size of these small form factors I much prefer a slightly bigger machine if it is not twinned with a power brick almost as large.

Applicants sought for one-way trip to Martian Big Brother house

Dave Walker

The move "Mars" from 2010

"Mars" (2010) has a similar plot.

I want the space suit with the cowboy fringes and appliques :-)

Wales slams Amazon over lack of Kindle support

Dave Walker

Re: You can get the bible in klingon for kindle


Wales *is* a country, but relevant to this conversation RE: the U.N., it is *not* an independent sovereign nation.



SpaceX Dragon eventually snared by ISS

Dave Walker

Re: I wonder Saturn boosters and STS never failed on the ground

It is worth noting, that despite it's problems in other areas, no Space Shuttle (STS) ever self immolated either!

Yes, it's dangerous work, this is why SpaceX are flying the Dragon uncrewed so many times before attempting a crew

(for the immolation of course!).

Tracy brothers are back: Thunderbirds Are Go! again in 5... 4... 3...

Dave Walker

Re: Finally I get the chance to use this .....


Space Shuttle Columbia disaster remembered 10 years on

Dave Walker

@TheFunkyGibbon: Like A Candle In The Wind....

Mandatory Pedant:

"Challenger" never exploded, it was torn apart in by aerodynamic stresses when the booster knocked the stack out of alignment according to the Rogers Report.

If anyone has wondered why the orbiter hangs on the side of the tank, instead of like on top in all of those Chelsey Bonestell illustrations, it's because the fragile orbiter (its wings in particular) is partially shielded by the shock cone from the main tank.

None of this diminishes the loss of the brave astronauts.

DX Philly

Publicity Stunt of the Week: Ten bizarre phone insurance claims

Dave Walker

Second Shower of the morning!

I did it myself *once*. With a ceramic mug to boot!

Lunar water-prospecting rover rolls closer towards launch

Dave Walker

"Sinus Botanicus"?

for "Bay"

Rover spots 'possibly artificial' MYSTERY SHINY OBJECT on Mars

Dave Walker

Re: Irony

Sad, but true....

From Dr No to Skyfall: The Reg's one month of Bond

Dave Walker

Re: Instead of rating various Bond's

That made me Llaugh out Lloud!

Japanese boffins unfurl banner above newly-discovered Element 113

Dave Walker

Re: And the purpose of this element is...?

Me thinks the poster meant "why would they use a non-Japanese name for Japan in the title" ergo perhaps (since I can't type in Kanji) it would be "Nihonium"?



Mars rover Curiosity gets ready to blast its first rock

Dave Walker

Re: Big Trak

Time to dig mine out of mom's attic!

HGST floats helium for low power, MASSIVE capacity HDDs

Dave Walker

Re: Leakage, Helium v. Hydrogen - Correct me if I'm wrong...

Isn't the Helium atom smaller than they Hydrogen atom because of its extra mass and self attractive forces? I seem to remember reading some where that despite being a tad heavy than H, He was smaller and 'slipperier'.

The note about being more detectable because of rarity is right on.

Apple eyes $$$ iDevice adapter bonanza

Dave Walker

Speaking of Dock Inserts

How is is that certain case and accessory manufacturers can't seem to make a dock insert that fits their own cases? I put on a Griffintech case, but have to let the poor phone flop around on the connector. And Griffin makes docking accessories too!

Voyager's 35th birthday gift: One-way INTERSTELLAR ticket

Dave Walker
Paris Hilton

Re: Isn't about time we built another Voyager?

Plus Venus Express radar mapping Venus!

(Icon: just 'cuz)

Curiosity's laser turns Mars rocks to 'glowing plasma'

Dave Walker

"...No Kill I..."

That is all

Smutty books strip Harry Potter of Amazon crown

Dave Walker

Dirty Books are *Fun*


Thank you Mr. Lehrer, you were truly a man ahead of your time.


Dave Walker

Re: Missed a trick Static Electric Roadways

Just like the Daleks did back in the old days!

Shuttle Enterprise comes home to New York

Dave Walker

Wings built in NY (Long Island)

The wings were made in the Grumman plant in Beth Page, Long Island, NY.

It's all McMansions now, NYC is better resting place, but yes, hardly *coming home*.

DX Philly

SpaceX launch put off for a week

Dave Walker

Software Delay

And most of the delay in the Shuttle program had to do with the software more than the hardware. The Shuttle was virtually uncontrollable with out computers and the code had to be written to *never* fail, crash, or hang.

Fire, well, because, that's all

Battlefield Earth ruled worst film EVER

Dave Walker
Thumb Down

Re: How many.....

SyFy has only one movie, they just keep changing the actors and the sets.

Dave Walker

Re: War of the Worlds

Ah, but that homage to "Mars Attacks" when the flaming train whizzes by......


Cameron's attempt to cram a robot arm wearing a Rolex into his pristine bottom

Dave Walker

Re: Dunno...Zero to One?

Fry: "Hey perfesser, how now that we're submerged, how many atmospheres of pressure is this thing designed for?"

Prof. Farnsworth: "Welllllll, since it a spaceship, I suppose zero to one.......(trailing off in contemplation)"

Robotic surgeon successful in first prostate snip

Dave Walker

Re: It's not a robot....."Where's Waldo"?

I don't think I want the answer!

The seven types of online commenter

Dave Walker

Thank You

That listing of taxonomy was very helpful!

New iPad: Crack open your wallets, fanbois, here's what it'll cost

Dave Walker

Re: Mates' rates States Slates

The UK has a standard sales tax with the VAT. Here in the 'states each state, and sometimes municipality, sets their own rates.

This variability is why national sellers advertise the base rate. you're on your own figuring out what will be added when you get to the till.


Japan takes second shot at extraterrestrial sampling with Hayabusa 2

Dave Walker
Thumb Up

A very lucid comment

You know, this is about as lucid a comment on the situation of Science and Education, not to mention Space Exploration, in the United States as could be made!

40,000 Apple fanbois demand ethical iPhone 5

Dave Walker

Vote with your wallet S-L-O-W-L-Y

I agree that most manufacturers are guilty of manufacturing under similar conditions so applying pressure to change by switching brands will be unlikely to work.

But since much of their profit comes from frequent fashion driven turn over we can announce that we will not buy new gear until the manufacturers clean up their production. By keeping old hardware longer one can apply some (not much, but better than no) pressure.

Newt Gingrich wants Moon to be 51st US state

Dave Walker

Canada? 5.5

Decimal for the Metric system!

Footie club sacks striker for homophobic tweet

Dave Walker


I know a good body piercer who could make suitable holes for a "Yale" padlock....

Google's Siri-a-like to be named 'Majel' after Trek actress

Dave Walker

And as Capt. Piccard's romantic foil

Lwaxana Troi !!!

<for the flames of love of course>

Iomega Mac Companion external hard drive

Dave Walker

Can't Connect *Both*? Try NewerTech

I was hoping that IOmega would follow the NewerTech Ministack; rest its departed soul....

They managed to have both USB and FW connectors.

Elon Musk's SpaceX to build 'Grasshopper' hover-rocket

Dave Walker

@ Graham RE "Parachutes"

Probably because the stage separation would occur far down range, over an ocean, from where the launch site was.

If they wanted quick/easy turn around it is likely that the designers plan to have the first stage return to home site to save transport costs.

Of course, given a Florida Launch, you could have it fly a path similar to the Shuttles Trans-Atlantic Abort (TAL) and land the first stage at a prepared site in Africa or Spain then return home by ship.


Freeman Dyson: Shale gas is 'cheap and effective'

Dave Walker

Burdening the poor; the poor are *always* burdened

Ah, that familiar old canard: we can't use expensive renewables because it would burden the poor.

The poor are, by nature, already burdened.

Time and time again in the U.S. a fuel tax that would support alternative fuel or mass transit has been defeated because "it unfairly burdens the poor".

The poor then have no transit, buy a car, use cheap gas, then get devastated when the price spikes.

The well off use much more energy than the poor and are therefore more affected. The poor would be, in the long run, better served by more expensive, but less price volatile, forms of energy.

Multimillionaire's private space ship 'can land on Mars'

Dave Walker

Comparative Technology

There are some relevant points to consider when seriously discussing routine access to Mars

1) Pace of technologic development and cost: Gagarin to Armstrong/Aldrin was 8 years, but the Apollo craft was very delicate, very expensive, pushed every envelope to the breaking point and was therefore very dangerous despite the relatively few serious accidents given the nature of the beast.

2) Moving from experimental to production technology: One goal of the new companies is to make the craft more reliable, use less experimental technology, and make it more comfortable. Both Apollo and Shuttle are experimental technology that require large staffs of highly trained people to operate; the ground operations for Shuttle are a significant part of the program. Early autos required frequent maintenance (tire repair, water, oil, etc...) and still broke down frequently. Today cars go forever despite the lack of maintenance we give them. Form factor aside the Orion and Dragon craft are as completely different than the Apollo craft as a Model T is from a Honda Civic.

3) Sustainable interplanetary infrastructure: for reliable access to Mars we need to invest in something like the Aldrin Cycler. A quick shot to the Mars, like the one to the Moon, is akin to the Lewis and Clark expedition. To open up the frontier the government, decades later, invested in the railroads which provided frequent, reliable, and sustainable round trip capacity. They took longer to build than the carts and boats that took Lewis and Clark, but made settling the West possible.

Just my 2c

South West Trains puts squeeze on commuters

Dave Walker
Thumb Up

2+2 seats replacing 3+2 in Philadelphia

Our local transit agency (Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority or SEPTA for short) after running 4 generations of cars with 3+2 seating has now seen the light and is using only 2+2 in its next build of cars.

People are getting *ahem* bigger, and it became obvious that almost no one wanted the middle seat, so out they go and there is more standing room.

Jon Bon Jovi accuses Steve Jobs of murdering music biz

Dave Walker

Albums as Concept Have Life, Bad Music dies quickly

I love albums, and I thing that even the youngsters will buy them for the whole concept, if it is a whole concept album vis-a-vis "Dark Side of the Moon". The "Two Hits Plus Filler" deserves to die.

Some "Filler" turns out to be good, but that's why Amazon and iTunes have their "Discovery Features"

Death of the Music Industry? Hardly. Death of the "Buy it Blind" model? Yep, Sure, Buh-Bye!

As long ago as 1985 (remember 1985?) a sage man once surmised the death of the industry was from "Sales are Slumbing... Could it be One Too Many Lousy Records?!?"

*Eric Buchard, et al...