The Science & Technology Thread

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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby Nano » Fri Feb 16, 2018 9:48 am

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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby Caradoc » Fri Feb 16, 2018 6:12 pm

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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby Noles1724 » Fri Feb 16, 2018 9:44 pm

Caradoc wrote:https://www.boredpanda.com/sphere-of-42000-matches-wallacemk/

It's sorta sciency


so where's he video of it burning?
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby Buc2 » Sat Feb 17, 2018 10:18 am

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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby Caradoc » Sat Feb 17, 2018 5:38 pm

Noles1724 wrote:
Caradoc wrote:https://www.boredpanda.com/sphere-of-42000-matches-wallacemk/

It's sorta sciency


so where's he video of it burning?



It's in the link
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby Buc2 » Sun Feb 18, 2018 12:31 pm

Lightsabers battles may actually be possible one day.
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Scientists Create a New Form of Light by Linking Photons
Photons typically don’t interact, but physicists bound three together in the lab

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An abstract image because it’s hard to see three individual photons. (ractapopulous via Pixabay)

By Marissa Fessenden
SMITHSONIAN.COM
FEBRUARY 16, 2018

It’s a glimpse of science fiction made fact: Scientists have created a new form of light that could someday be used to build light crystals. But before would-be Jedis start demanding their sabers, the advance is far more likely to lead to intriguing new ways of communicating and computing, researchers report this week in Science.

Light is made up of photons—speedy, tiny packets of energy. Typically, photons do not interact with each other at all, which is why when using flashlights “you don’t see the light beams bounce off each other, you see them go through each other,” explains Sergio Cantu, a Ph.D. candidate in atomic physics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In new experiments, however, the physicists coaxed individual photons to cozy up to each other and link, similar to the way individual atoms stick together in molecules.

The photon dance happens in a lab at MIT where the physicists run table-top experiments with lasers. Cantu, his colleague Aditya Venkatramani, a Ph.D. candidate in atomic physics at Harvard University, and their collaborators start by creating a cloud of chilled rubidium atoms. Rubidium is an alkali metal so it typically looks like a silver-white solid. But vaporizing rubidium with a laser and keeping it ultracold creates a cloud the researchers contain in a small tube and magnetize. This keeps the rubidium atoms diffuse, slow moving and in a highly excited state.

Then the team fires a weak laser at the cloud. The laser is so weak that just a handful of photons enter the cloud, a press release from MIT explains. The physicists measure the photons when they exit the other side of the cloud and that is when things get weird.

Normally the photons would be traveling at the speed of light—or almost 300,000 kilometers per second. But after passing through the cloud, the photons creep along 100,000 times slower than normal. Also, instead of exiting the cloud randomly, the photons come through in pairs or triplets. These pairs and triplets also give off a different energy signature, a phase shift, that tells the researchers the photons are interacting.

“Initially, it was unclear,” says Venkatramani. The team had seen two photons interact before, but they didn’t know if triplets were possible. After all, he explains, a hydrogen molecule is a stable arrangement of two hydrogen atoms but three hydrogen atoms can’t remain together for longer than a millionth of a second. “We were not sure three photons would be a stable molecule or something we could even see,” he says.​

Surprisingly, the researchers discovered that the three-photon grouping is even more stable than two. “The more you add, the more strongly they are bound,” says Venkatramani.

But how do the photons get together? The physicists’ theoretical model suggests that as a single photon moves through the cloud of rubidium, it hops from one atom to another, “like a bee flitting between flowers,” the press release explains. One photon can briefly bind to an atom, forming a hybrid photon-atom or polariton. If two of these polaritons meet in the cloud, they interact. When they reach the edge of the cloud, the atoms stay behind and the photons sail forward, still bound together. Add more photons and same phenomenon gives rise to triplets.

“Now that we understand what leads to interactions being attractive, you can ask: Can you make them repel each other instead?” says Cantu. Fundamentally, playing with the interaction could reveal new insights into how energy works or where it comes from, he says.

For the purpose of technological advances, photons bound together in this way can carry information—a quality that is useful for quantum computing. And quantum computing could lead to uncrackable codes, ultra-precise clocks, incredibly powerful computers and more. The thing that is so attractive about encoding information in photons is that photons can carry their information across distances very quickly. Already photons speed our communications along fiber optic lines. Bound or entangled photons could transmit complex quantum information almost instantaneously.

The team envisions controlling the attractive and repulsive interactions of photons so precisely that they could arrange photons in predictable structures that hold together like crystals. Some photons would repel each other, pushing apart until they find their own space, while others hold the larger formation and keep the repelling ones from scattering. Their patterned arrangement would be a light crystal. In a light crystal, “if you know where one photon is, then you know where the others are behind it, at equal intervals,” says Venkatramani. “This could be very useful if you want to have quantum communication at regular intervals.”

The future that such crystals could enable may seem more nebulous than one where people fight with lightsabers, but it could hold advances even more impressive and undreamt of as yet.
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby Buc2 » Sun Feb 18, 2018 1:11 pm

Opportunity. A mission that was only supposed to last 90 sol days (Martian days) just celebrated it's 5,000th sol day.

Today Was the NASA Opportunity Rover's 5,000th Martian Dawn

Tom McKay
Yesterday 7:10pm Filed to: NASA

Saturday, February 17th marks the 5,000th local day (sol) of operations for NASA’s Mars Opportunity rover, which was originally designed to last for just 90 sols after its January 2004 landing date, but has instead continued to set milestones like completing a marathon-length tour of its surroundings and taking huge composite photos of its new world’s surface.

Now some 28 miles (45 kilometers) from its original, NASA-trash-covered landing site, Opportunity continues to provide a wealth of scientific data about Mars, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory wrote in a blog post:

A Martian “sol” lasts about 40 minutes longer than an Earth day, and a Martian year lasts nearly two Earth years. Opportunity’s Sol 1 was landing day, Jan. 25, 2004 (that’s in Universal Time; it was Jan. 24 in California). The prime mission was planned to last 90 sols. NASA did not expect the rover to survive through a Martian winter. Sol 5,000 will begin early Friday, Universal Time, with the 4,999th dawn a few hours later. Opportunity has worked actively right through the lowest-energy months of its eighth Martian winter.

According to JPL, Opportunity has now taken over 225,000 photos, including a recent selfie NASA posted on Friday.

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Rob Dalton
‏@Rob_D_F1
3h3 hours ago
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Replying to @MarsRovers @NASA
14 years old! It would have collected more data but it didn't wake up til after lunch, went straight on snapchat and shouted "I hate you" at its mum
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby Buc2 » Tue Feb 20, 2018 8:30 am

China & Europe love what Musk accomplished with the Falcon Heavy. NASA & the US are, like, meh. smh

Love this pic...
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ROCKET ENVY
China and Europe love SpaceX’s new Falcon Heavy rocket. Does NASA?

When SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy rocket debuted this month, China’s aerospace community was mostly envious, noting that their equivalent rocket, the Long March 9, would not be ready for another decade. One story in state media observed that “to put it more bluntly, this time the Americans showed us Chinese with pure power why they are still the strongest country in the world.”

The head of Europe’s space program watched the US company launch its enormous, largely reusable new rocket, and was also inspired.

“Totally new ideas are needed and Europe must now prove it still possesses that traditional strength to surpass itself and break out beyond existing borders,” wrote Jan Wörner, director general of the European Space Agency, on his official blog. He expressed dismay that rockets now being built by Europe’s space company, Arianespace, won’t be reusable, which puts them at a deep cost disadvantage to SpaceX. He called for a re-thinking of Europe’s rocket program.

This attitude didn’t last long. A few days later, Wörner wrote an apologetic sequel to his post, emphasizing that Arianespace’s current rocket plan was correct and would be completed as intended. He was merely exercising his prerogative as head of the continent’s space agency for “turning our minds to systems still far off in the future,” he said.

Reading between the lines, the abrupt about-face can be attributed to the stakeholders of contractors and government policymakers, who weren’t pleased with Wörner’s public fretting. This speaks to space exploration’s tendency to become industrial policy, more about jobs than science, which is a key reason why 1970s space visions of lunar bases and enormous space stations aren’t a reality.

If China and European officials are envious of the new American rocket, the US space program is decidedly more circumspect about its future.

Continued...
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby The Outsider » Wed Feb 21, 2018 3:07 pm

Interesting read. I can understand why the acronym guys would be skeptical of the Falcon Heavy but frankly the reality that we have a functioning, reusable heavy rocket is awesome in it's own right. Especially one developed totally by a private entity.
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby Buc2 » Sun Feb 25, 2018 11:54 am

The space race for heavy payload rockets is really heating up. ALS will soon be testing their own version of a low cost, heavy payload rocket that will compete with SpaceX's Falcon Heavy. Bezo's Blue Origin is also working to up their game.

SpaceX's biggest rival has a 'genius' plan to cut its rocket launch costs more than 70%
Dave Mosher
Feb. 24, 2018, 9:40 AM 2,642,809

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An illustration of ULA's Vulcan rocket launching toward space. (In this image, used-up rocket motors are falling back to Earth. United Launch Alliance

SpaceX turned heads around the world on February 6 with the first-ever launch of Falcon Heavy.

The 230-foot-tall rocket's three boosters helped push Elon Musk's Tesla Roadster into space, peeled off after running low on fuel, and then careened toward Earth.

Two of the 16-story boosters rocketed to a safe landing (the third fell into the ocean), and the flight was hailed as a huge success. It proved SpaceX could lift twice as much payload to space for about 25% of the cost of its closest competitor while recycling rocket parts worth tens of millions of dollars.

That primary rival is United Launch Alliance, a company that aerospace industry titans Boeing and Lockheed Martin formed in 2005.

ULA's largest rocket, the Delta IV Heavy, costs $350 million per launch, according to company CEO Tory Bruno. Delta IV Heavy is far more expensive that SpaceX's $90-million Falcon Heavy in part because it isn't reusable.

ULA plans to retire that launcher after about seven more missions, but the company is currently developing its own reusable rocket, dubbed Vulcan, to compete with innovative companies like Musk's SpaceX and Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin.

"Vulcan will first fly in mid-2020," Bruno told Business Insider, adding that the rocket "will start at sub-$100-million" — a 70% discount compared to the company's Delta IV Heavy.

Here's what Vulcan will be capable of, why one ULA engineer described its recovery system as "genius," and how the rocket may earn its keep in an increasingly crowded and challenging industry.

Delta IV Heavy used to be the world's most powerful operational rocket. It can send nearly 32 tons of payload into low-Earth orbit — more than two standard school buses' worth of weight.
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A Delta IV Heavy rocket made by United Launch Alliance carries a spy satellite toward space on August 28, 2013. Joe Davila/USAF; Wikipedia (public domain)

Since Bruno took the helm of ULA in 2014, the company has been developing its more powerful and partly reusable Vulcan rocket system. That's supposed to launch for the first time in mid-2020.
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United Space Alliance

"Sometimes it's more than just, 'Hey my rocket's really big,'" Bruno said. "Sometimes you need the rocket to do some rather unique and exotic things after they're up in orbit."

Vulcan should lift 40 tons (nearly three school buses) into low-Earth orbit.
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United Space Alliance

"Vulcan is modular, so you can add solid rocket boosters to kick up its size," Bruno said.

That's less than SpaceX's Falcon Heavy, which can lift more than 70 tons — nearly five school buses — for one-fourth the price. But Bruno said there are big differences between the two systems that will make Vulcan competitive.
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Thom Baur/Reuters
Source: SpaceX


The key difference is the rocket's upper stage. Falcon Heavy currently uses a rocket-grade RP-1 kerosene as fuel, but it can freeze in space after a few hours. Vulcan's upper stage will use cryogenic oxygen and hydrogen, which are more resilient to the punishing temperatures of space.
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United Launch Alliance

ULA is also evolving its upper-stage system into what it calls ACES: the Advanced Cryogenic Evolved Stage. After deploying a spacecraft, ACES can be left in orbit for months or years and be refueled instead of being discarded as "dead flying hulks in space," Bruno said.
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United Launch Alliance

"That makes it practical to refuel them in space, and use them for other purposes, or simply use them as a shuttle to run down and grab a spacecraft that you might be so heavy you could only get it to [low-Earth orbit], and then take it literally anywhere else in the solar system," Bruno added. "That is going to completely change how we go to space and what we do there."

"It's not just saving a little bit of money off the launch service cost," Bruno said. "This could become a transportation system that enables economic activity between here and the moon, and between the asteroids."
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An illustration of an outpost on the moon. ESA/Foster + Partners

Vulcan will also lower ULA's launch costs by having detachable first-stage booster engines, called SMART (sensible, modular, autonomous return technology). "We would recover about two-thirds the cost of that first-stage booster every single time we fly with no performance hit," Bruno said.
Can't embed - click link: https://thumbs.gfycat.com/KnobbyTiredEwe-mobile.mp4
Source: ULA/YouTube

This is different than SpaceX's boosters, which return in one piece and conserve fuel to rocket to a landing. But payloads are sometimes too heavy and need every last drop of propellant to reach their destination in space — so some boosters inevitably get discarded despite being reusable.
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The reusable side boosters of SpaceX's Falcon Heavy rocket land as a pair on February 6, 2018. SpaceX/Flickr (public domain)

"How might you, perhaps, not save the entire value of the booster, but get to save [most of] it every single time?" Bruno said. "The most expensive thing on the booster is the rocket engine. In fact, two-thirds of the cost of a booster is just that one part."

Once the SMART engine package detaches, it will inflate an aeroshell to help orient it for a high-speed reentry. The shell will also insulate the engines from the intense heat generated by plowing through Earth's atmosphere at thousands of miles per hour.
Can't embed - click link: https://thumbs.gfycat.com/AssuredAshame ... mobile.mp4
Source: ULA/YouTube

A slender parachute will then float SMART toward the ground. But it will get some help: Using a technique pioneered in the 1960s, it will be snagged from above by a large helicopter.
Can't embed - click link: https://thumbs.gfycat.com/ColorlessTalk ... mobile.mp4
Source: ULA/YouTube

"When I first heard about it, it seemed like a very strange almost laughable concept, until you actually start to look into the history of mid-flight capture and realize that it's actually a very genius way to do it, to reuse and capture the engines without exposing them to any sort of harsh environments like saltwater," Jeremy Braunagel, a project engineer at ULA who works on Vulcan, said in a video.

ACES should be ready to debut in 2023 or 2024, Bruno said, with SMART following sometime after that.
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A timeline of how ULA plans to transition its Atlas rocket system into the reusable Vulcan rocket system. United Launch Alliance

Although small satellites are getting smaller, big satellites always seem to get bigger and need to go farther in space. ULA is banking primarily on those big satellites for its Vulcan business.
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Engineers conduct a white light inspection on NASA's James Webb Space Telescope in the clean room at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland. NASA/Chris Gunn

"We've never seen a time when the customer has asked for less lift. That's kind of why we took this strategy," Bruno said, adding that flying the entire booster back could become harder and harder.

According to Bruno, Delta IV Heavy will retire in "the early 2020s" after launching once or twice a year through that time. That leaves a huge opening for Falcon Heavy, especially since Musk said SpaceX is working on its own cryogenic upper-stage (which may compete with ACES).
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Elon Musk at a press conference after the first-ever launch of SpaceX's Falcon Heavy rocket on February 6, 2018. Joe Skipper/Reuters

Musk has said he'd eat his hat "with a side of mustard if [Vulcan] flies a national security spacecraft before 2023."

SpaceX is also pouring an increasingly large share of its resources into developing a 348-foot-tall, interplanetary launch system called the "Big Falcon Rocket" or BFR.
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An illustration of SpaceX's "Big F---ing Rocket" system, as Musk sometimes calls it, launching toward space. SpaceX/YouTube

Musk expects to debut the spaceship portion in 2020 and possibly launch toward Mars in 2022.

Meanwhile, Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos' aerospace company, Blue Origin, is quietly developing and building its own huge, reusable rocket system, called New Glenn.
Image
Dave Mosher/Business Insider
Source: Business Insider


The future of rockets is looking increasingly exciting, innovative, and crowded. It remains to be seen if ULA and Blue Origin can keep up with the breakneck pace of SpaceX, or carve their own niche in what is indisputably a new space race.
Image
The "New Glenn" rocket system is planned to be a reusable, vertical-landing booster that can deliver 3.85 million pounds thrust — about half the power of NASA's Saturn V moon rockets. Blue Origin
Source: Business Insider
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby Buc2 » Wed Feb 28, 2018 12:44 pm

Moon to get first mobile phone network
Reuters•February 27, 2018

BARCELONA (Reuters) - The moon will get its first mobile phone network next year, enabling high-definition streaming from the lunar landscape back to earth, part of a project to back the first privately funded moon mission.

Vodafone Germany, network equipment maker Nokia and carmaker Audi said on Tuesday they were working together to support the mission, 50 years after the first NASA astronauts walked on the moon.

Vodafone said it had appointed Nokia as its technology partner to develop a space-grade network which would be a small piece of hardware weighing less than a bag of sugar.

The companies are working with Berlin-based company PTScientists on the project, with a launch scheduled in 2019 from Cape Canaveral on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, Vodafone said.

"This project involves a radically innovative approach to the development of mobile network infrastructure," Vodafone Germany Chief Executive Hannes Ametsreiter said.

One executive involved said the decision to build a 4G network rather a state-of-the-art 5G network was taken because the next generation networks remain in the testing and trial stage and are not stable enough to ensure they would work from the lunar surface.
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby Caradoc » Wed Feb 28, 2018 5:28 pm

https://www.nbcnews.com/mach/science/wo ... ncna851556

...
Rockets have been the way to get satellites into orbit since the dawn of the space age. But Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen hopes to shake that up with help from the world’s biggest airplane.

“Stratolaunch” is a 500,000-pound beast with twin fuselages and a wingspan of 385 feet. Allen’s Seattle-based company is developing it as a platform for lifting rockets into the stratosphere before launching them into space. It’s seen as a cheaper, more reliable route to low-Earth orbit (LEO) — the sweet spot for many kinds of satellites.

The plane is still in development and has yet to fly, but last December it taxied out onto the runway at the Mojave Air & Space Port in Mojave, California. In another test last Sunday, it hit a new top taxi speed of 46 miles per hour. If all goes according to plan, the plane will take its first test flight next year. As to when Stratolaunch might begin commercial operations, no date has been given.
...


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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby Buc2 » Thu Mar 01, 2018 8:43 am

Cool, but I wonder why the need for two fuselages? I'm going to have to look into why they chose this particular design when I get some spare time.
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby bucfanclw » Thu Mar 01, 2018 10:36 am

Buc2 wrote:Cool, but I wonder why the need for two fuselages? I'm going to have to look into why they chose this particular design when I get some spare time.

My guess is for balance. It needs to carry a rocket in the middle so the landing gear would need to be distributed around the rocket. That's just the most efficient design for that purpose.
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby Buc2 » Thu Mar 01, 2018 12:48 pm

bucfanclw wrote:
Buc2 wrote:Cool, but I wonder why the need for two fuselages? I'm going to have to look into why they chose this particular design when I get some spare time.

My guess is for balance. It needs to carry a rocket in the middle so the landing gear would need to be distributed around the rocket. That's just the most efficient design for that purpose.

Thanks. I should have thought of that. Duh. Makes perfect sense now that you said it.
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby RedLeader » Sun Mar 04, 2018 3:56 pm

Thought this was pretty cool...

https://dms.licdn.com/playback/C4E05AQG ... QKATp7nq0c



Crazy, this technological age we're in.
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby Zarniwoop » Sun Mar 04, 2018 4:27 pm

I want one!
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby RedLeader » Sun Mar 04, 2018 6:06 pm

Zarniwoop wrote:I want one!


Ya, figured you'd dig it... I can also already see these on the football field.
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby Buc2 » Mon Mar 05, 2018 8:19 am

Zarniwoop wrote:I want need one!

Fixed
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby beardmcdoug » Mon Mar 05, 2018 8:56 am

RedLeader wrote:Thought this was pretty cool...

https://dms.licdn.com/playback/C4E05AQG ... QKATp7nq0c



Crazy, this technological age we're in.


Man that’s awesome tech

I told my wife about 3 years ago that in the near future, that I could see us all having our own personalized drones following us around to record us, interact with other people’s drones, and do various tasks - much like that fairy from Zelda. She looked at me like wtf are you talking about lol
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby beardmcdoug » Mon Mar 05, 2018 8:57 am

Buc2 wrote:
Zarniwoop wrote:I want need one!

Fixed


Yeah that would be sick for your dirt bike stuff
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby Zarniwoop » Mon Mar 05, 2018 9:10 am

beardmcdoug wrote:
Buc2 wrote:Fixed


Yeah that would be sick for your dirt bike stuff



That was my thought. I got my daughter that drone to take vids but it simply isn't that great. I guess I should have bought a better one. 80% of my vidoes are of the ground. Its nearly impossible to track someone moving so fast so they remain in screen.

I really like the idea though....I might have to look into much better ones. I bought this one for something like $125. It's great fun for recreational stuff so it's well worth it from that standpoint, but the precision just isn't good enough for what I want it for.
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby mdb1958 » Tue Mar 06, 2018 4:28 am

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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby mdb1958 » Tue Mar 06, 2018 4:37 am

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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby mdb1958 » Thu Mar 08, 2018 9:35 am

Nobody thought the flying bathtub was cool?
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby Noles1724 » Thu Mar 08, 2018 9:38 am

mdb1958 wrote:Nobody thought the flying bathtub was cool?


no
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby Noles1724 » Thu Mar 08, 2018 9:38 am

Noles1724 wrote:
mdb1958 wrote:Nobody thought the flying bathtub was cool?


no


also would have been a lot cooler if you posted both links in one
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby RedLeader » Thu Mar 08, 2018 9:47 pm

Try to guess before clicking...

https://www.howmanypeopleareinspacerightnow.com/



I was surprised.
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby Buc2 » Fri Mar 09, 2018 8:12 am

RedLeader wrote:Try to guess before clicking...

https://www.howmanypeopleareinspacerightnow.com/



I was surprised.

Before looking, I will say 7.

Spoiler:
Okay...so that was way off. I guess the end of the space shuttle program put a huge damper on the number of people going up there to do science. That's a real shame. Hopefully SpaceX can up that ante again if/when the Falcon Heavy is cleared to begin manned flights.
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Re: The Science & Technology Thread

Postby mdb1958 » Fri Mar 09, 2018 8:19 am

beardmcdoug wrote:
RedLeader wrote:Thought this was pretty cool...

https://dms.licdn.com/playback/C4E05AQG ... QKATp7nq0c



Crazy, this technological age we're in.


Man that’s awesome tech

I told my wife about 3 years ago that in the near future, that I could see us all having our own personalized drones following us around to record us, interact with other people’s drones, and do various tasks - much like that fairy from Zelda. She looked at me like wtf are you talking about lol



10 years ago they had the mosquito drone that could inject you.
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