Tempest in the Arctic Ocean ?>

Tempest in the Arctic Ocean

Tempers are flaring over the Arctic Ocean.  The heat may melt the sea ice faster than climate change.  The fate of polar bears is not the greatest problem facing humankind, but it’s a great case study of the conflict between politics and science. Since the sixteenth century, explorers have searched for a northwest passage over the Americas and a northeast passage over Asia.  Unsuccessful, these searches led to two great engineering achievements of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, the Suez…

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Federal A2500A Skis, no rigging ?>

Federal A2500A Skis, no rigging

Pair Federal A2500A Aircraft skis.  SN 387.  Manufactured Jan 1948.  No rigging. They are on the TC for Stinson,  No approval needed. I don’t know about other aircraft. Federal Aircraft Works The Federal Ski ATC 82 Prod No 40 Ident A2500A Approved static weight per ski 1250 lb Date of Manufacture 1 48 Serial No 487 (both) You can pick them up in New Jersey, or I’ll happily pack them in the manner you request. Bubble wrap and cardboard is…

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Franklin Engine ?>

Franklin Engine

Franklin Engine 6A4-165-B3 SN 32385  Heavy Case: Casting 18905 Last inspection 14 June 2003  1149.2  SMOH Starter, generator, manifolds, and balance tubes. Crated and ready to go by carrier of your choice.  robert.hadow@nccuthbert.com  30 July 2017      

Hyperloop: Like a Bullet? ?>

Hyperloop: Like a Bullet?

Thunderf00t, a great chemist you may be, but you need to review your mechanical engineering. Hyperloop for all its challenges – and particularly the danger of a vacuum failure – will not “shoot like a bullet” in the case of tube and vacuum failure. In a gun, the projectile fits tightly in the barrel.  It is propelled by massive pressure behind it.  In the case of a 9mm pistol, the pressure is 2,400 atmospheres, 35,000 psi (2400 Bar).  When the…

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Hyper Chariot — Technology’s version of #FakeNews ?>

Hyper Chariot — Technology’s version of #FakeNews

Elon Musk rekindled the dream of travel in a tube.  It’s not a new idea.  Engineers in New York experimented with a pneumatic subway in 1867.  A hundred years later, the Federal Railway Administration experimented with a train that traveled on an air cushion.  In 2013, Musk, reputation strong with engineering successes at SpaceX and Tesla Motors, proposed a 700 mph train-in-a-tube that could be built at a tenth of the cost of the California High Speed Rail system.  He…

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Fair Voting and Gerrymandering ?>

Fair Voting and Gerrymandering

“My vote doesn’t count.”  “The system is rigged.”  The complaints are manifold.  Suggestions are scarce. Winner take all, or first-across the line voting schemes are often blamed.  A plurality voting protocol leads inevitably to a two-party system, the process being described by Duverger’s Law. More fundamental though, is the geographic basis of almost every existing political structure.  In the United States, we vote in wards, consolidate the totals in precincts, and consolidate them again in districts.  For President, the districts…

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Quantum Computing – the four challenges ?>

Quantum Computing – the four challenges

For all the spilled ink and breathless prose about quantum computing (QC), there remain four major challenges to overcome before it takes the place of classical silicon computing. • Coherence (the quantum state of data) • Entanglement (quantum teleportation) • Error Correction • Languages and compilers The PC on your desk, the smartphone in your pocket, and the biggest computers at the NSA manipulate bits that can be either on or off, one or zero, true or false. In 1981,…

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Quantum Computing – Evolutionary, Not Revolutionary ?>

Quantum Computing – Evolutionary, Not Revolutionary

Quantum computing promises to be a key development in the next decade.  It’s not magic and nor is it earth-shattering, despite the amount of spilled ink and breathless documentaries on the subject. The Trend Fifty years ago, Gordon Moore observed that the density of integrated circuits double every two years.  Since then, chip speeds and densities have improved to allow the cost of computing to drop by half every eighteen months.  We’re approaching the limit of the current chip making…

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Brick and mortar stores use internet to shoot themselves in the foot ?>

Brick and mortar stores use internet to shoot themselves in the foot

Brick and mortar retail in the United States is in big trouble. Bankruptcy attorneys wait in anticipation. Retailers aren’t doing themselves any favors when they implement a hasty internet strategy. Here is a story of just such a blunder. It’s hard to tell whether the blunder is the result of deliberate strategy, feuding between divisions of the company, or plain stupidity. The results in any case will be failure of the store network. This specialty retailer deals in product one normally…

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