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  • Diable Rouge
    started a topic Anyone for an astronomy thread?

    Anyone for an astronomy thread?

    I've always been partial to a bit of a stargazing, but the expertise is somewhat lacking. Other than picking out the Plough, and knowing the red, yellow and green stars are probably Mars, Jupiter and Venus, I'm usually lost, but here you can point out anything interesting that's happening in the night sky.

  • ursus arctos
    replied
    Very much so.

    Though gerrymandering and voter suppression certainly help.

    Leave a comment:


  • The Awesome Berbaslug!!!
    replied
    When looking at the US National Debt, paying for the Iraq and Afghanistan war by borrowing, and having massive tax cuts for the upper end of the income spectrum really have a lot to answer for don't they? I wonder how the republicans have any credibility on economics any more. It's quite the exercise in manufactured consent isn't it?

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  • ursus arctos
    replied
    It is less than half the market rate in the area.

    Being able to print a reserve currency covers a lot of sins.

    If we lose that, it is going to get very ugly very quickly.

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  • The Awesome Berbaslug!!!
    replied
    41000 a month would be really cheap by dublin standards. That gerrymandered map is hilarious it reminds me of the entirety of county longford being designated Section 23 (A tax incentive scheme to encourage investment in apartments in our then really run down docklands.

    I must say I marvel at the wild enthusiasm of all aspects of the United State establishment at all levels to try and inflate bubbles all the time. If you need to bribe foreign capital to this degree to build this building, maybe it shouldn't be built. I see that the US govt is projecting that the budget deficit is going to grow to between 5 and 6% while growth is predicted to slow to 2.3%. That's going to lead to exciting times when the global economy next decides to take a bit of a dip.

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  • ursus arctos
    replied
    About USD 1000/month for a one bedroom next to the highway, but that isn't the biggest scandal.

    This is.

    In order to qualify for large breaks for foreign investors, they had to make into a "distressed urban area". They did that by a particular kind of gerrymandering that brought in public housing projects from miles away.

    As I reported back in 2017, records obtained by CityLab under the Freedom of Information Act reveal the gerrymandered map that Empire State used to qualify Hudson Yards for EB-5 financing. This particular TEA snakes up from the West Side and includes Central Park. (Think about that: a map of Manhattan that claims Central Park as an economically troubled area.) Beyond the park, the qualifying zone for Hudson Yards captures several census tracts in Harlem, where public housing projects boost the overall unemployment figure.
    It really is a pretty good amalgam of everything that is wrong with the city (and country) right now.

    As the name indicates, Hudson Yards was built on top of the train yards adjacent to Pennsylvania Station. It's mostly bedrock (unlike Battery Park City, which is all fill)
    Last edited by ursus arctos; 22-04-2019, 22:12.

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  • The Awesome Berbaslug!!!
    replied
    What counts as affordable housing in Hells Kitchen nowadays? I take it that part of New York is on one of those slivers of harder rock?

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  • ursus arctos
    replied
    It's a really horrific use of tax credits for affordable housing and really quite ugly .There's also a decent chance that all of the shops and restaurants will go bust within five years.

    And perhaps worst of all, it screws with FF's view.

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  • The Awesome Berbaslug!!!
    replied
    I was reading about the Hudson Yards in the Guardian. It seems like all these Architecture writers all seem to view it as an opportunity to bring out all the bon mots they've been storing up over the years for such an occasion. Oh well, It's New York. They'll be replaced soon enough if they're really that shite. Is it really that shite that people won't get used to it over time?

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  • Guy Profumo
    replied
    Lyrids peak tonight, people.

    Sadly, the radiant is very close to a waning moon, only just past the full.


    Leave a comment:


  • ursus arctos
    replied
    Had he done it six years later, he likely would have gotten a taste of lead, or at least been tased.

    Do you mean from the south? To me, the "other direction" is the Hudson River. The area south and east of the Intrepid is now the home of the crime against urbanity that is Hudson Yards.

    Hell's Kitchen developed the way that it did because of its proximity to the piers and their need for incredibly cheap casual labour. There were also ethic micro-communities such as are that they never got very far from where there were landed after making it through the gauntlet at Ellis Island.

    It continues to gentrify at pace following a hiatus caused by 9/11 and the 2007/8 crash. Whenever we go to dinner down there, I am struck by some new trendy hangout that would have convinced my mom that aliens had taken over.

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  • The Awesome Berbaslug!!!
    replied
    I think we were a little further away than that. and coming at it from the other direction. I suspect that whole area looks very different now. I'd love to go there again, they have a shuttle now and everything. On that trip Garcia nearly got us shot by dumping an empty snapple bottle into an empty bin in the enclosed plaza section of the WTC. they were still incredibly nervous of loud noises in 1996.

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  • ursus arctos
    replied
    I am pleased to see that you "get it".

    I am even more pleased to know that Garcia got the full experience of the neighbourhood my mother grew up in despite making only a short visit. She was born and raised in a tenement one block east and a few blocks north of the Intepid's current berth.

    I do, however, wish that I had known those stories when I last met him in Chelsea. I could have given him a tour.
    Last edited by ursus arctos; 22-04-2019, 16:03.

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  • The Awesome Berbaslug!!!
    replied
    Haha, "Calm down dad. we're already past the point of maximum dynamic pressure, I want to hear when they announce main engine cut-off."

    I vaguely remember a display to the Mercury/gemini programme on the Intrepid when I was there. (Along with a display to George HW Bush and Leyte gulf) Looking at the website, I'm kind of impressed that I don't remember the Lockheed Blackbird parked on the deck, though I do remember our party all being too broad at the shoulder and too tall to get through the "You must fit through this door in order to go on the Submarine." which amused Garcia, because his dad was an actual submariner.

    The thing is that a lot of the memories of that day are largely swamped by something that happened when Myself, garcia and the lad we were staying with were on our way back from the museum. that part of New York was, er, crying out for gentrification at the time, and we stopped into a shop to have a look around at some stuff. Garcia nipped outside for a fag, and while he was lighting up, I caught sight of him being propositioned by an african american lady of the mid afternoon. A woman of seemingly advanced years who was unencumbered by teeth or legs, and seemed to be propelling herself around on a sort of skate. Watching the mortified 17 year old garcia gradually realising what was going on, and trying to politely refuse the kind offer is one of scenes that can block out seeing the most beautiful airplane ever made.

    Another incident from that trip involving Garcia, cigarettes and the African american community arose when we were down at the south end of Manhattan and Chris and I were walking ahead of Garcia, who was being shunned for smoking, while he moodily trudged along behind us. Then a grey haired African american man came across the street on a tiny bicycle with bars coming out of the axles for doing tricks. He cycled up to Garcia and says "Boy, does your Mama Know you smoke? You ain't old enough to smoke, You ain't even old enough to shave." Before bursting into laughter, and slowly cycling away. I swear to god, I nearly died laughing.

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  • ursus arctos
    replied
    Originally posted by The Awesome Berbaslug!!! View Post
    This is the thing that interests me. For a short period of time, everyone was eight years old. Even Walter Cronkite.
    I'd say it was even a bit weirder than that. The 8 year olds were seasoned observers who would critique things like launch angles and how close the re-entry point was to the target (and therefore the requisite aircraft carrier), while Cronkite et al will still full of wonder.

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  • The Awesome Berbaslug!!!
    replied
    Originally posted by ursus arctos View Post
    Hmm.

    That's three times as many as Buzz Aldrin (who flew on Gemini XII)
    [URL]https://twitter.com/GenChuckYeager/status/1109887023547121670[/URL]

    I doubt he's sitting there typing out his tweets, and a lot of it is "On this day" but quite a few of these things are him thanking people for inviting him to sports games and events, so he's clearly still very active.

    He seemed very old when I was playing Chuck Yeager's Air combat back in the early 90's. I suspect that that will be a very big funeral when the time comes.
    Last edited by The Awesome Berbaslug!!!; 22-04-2019, 12:42.

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  • The Awesome Berbaslug!!!
    replied
    It was the people who had been aware of world events pre-Sputnik who found it all rather unbelievable.

    This is the thing that interests me. For a short period of time, everyone was eight years old. Even Walter Cronkite.

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  • ursus arctos
    replied
    Hmm.

    That's three times as many as Buzz Aldrin (who flew on Gemini XII)

    Leave a comment:


  • The Awesome Berbaslug!!!
    replied
    BTW. I was surprised to see that Chuck yeager has nearly 10,000 tweets. The man was born in 1923

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  • ursus arctos
    replied
    As someone who turned 8 a few months after Gemini XII, I would say that for those of us who grew up with those launches, it all seemed rather normal.

    It was the people who had been aware of world events pre-Sputnik who found it all rather unbelievable.

    BTW, I think that is at the core of the strong belief of many people of my generation that manned space flight is something "we have to do".

    Leave a comment:


  • The Awesome Berbaslug!!!
    replied
    Originally posted by ursus arctos View Post
    Space X just landed all three boosters for Falcon Heavy for the first time ever (two on their landing pads and the center one on a drone ship).

    I don't have words to convey just how amazing that is to someone who watched every Gemini launch and recovery.
    That happened last week! And they lost the centre core when it fell over in heavy seas. They normally secure it by sending out an enormous, heavy Roomba to sit under the booster, and grab it from beneath. Unfortunately a falcon heavy centre core is sufficiently different to an ordinary booster, that it can't grab on.

    I've got to say there is just something about rockets that brings out the 8 year old in one isn't there? I watched a great documentary about the mercury Gemini launches, and all I could really think of is what the fuck must this have seemed like at the time?

    Meanwhile this happened yesterday during the preparations for the in flight abort test of the Dragon II.

    [URL]https://twitter.com/Astronut099/status/1119825093742530560?s=20[/URL]

    This is not good. It shouldn't blow up like this. This happened during the preparation testing for the in flight abort test. This is going to delay things quite a bit. something very similar (but less....energetic) happened to the Boeing capsule, and that disappeared off the radar for 10 months. So they have to find out what the issue was, and figure out how to fix it.

    Despicable is a bit strong. I would describe him as surprisingly normal for someone who is really pretty weird. For a start he doesn't pour his money into those things that hobbes was talking about, and he's never had access to Billions. he ran out of money in 2007. Instead he's been working 3 day weeks at Space-X and tesla, and working up to 16 hour days for nearly 20 years. the seventh day, he does other things, or indulges in a massive midlife crisis. He also mostly manages to keep a lid on it in public, even though I reckon that it must be nearly 2 decades since someone in his orbit told him he shouldn't be a dickhead. He also seems to be driven by an almost Roy Keane like drive not to be like his father. "He was such a terrible human being, You have no idea. My dad will have a carefully thought out plan of evil. He will plan evil." He denied that this was by way of intimating that his father had been physically violent but added: "You have no idea about how bad. Almost every crime you can possibly think of, he has done. Almost every evil thing you could possibly think of, he has done." (What he has done is kill three intruders to his house, and at the age of 72 fathered a child with his 30 year old step-daughter.)(I should also add that this is Musk talking, not Roy Keane)

    Given the atmosphere of sypcophancy that surrounds him, and his tenuous grasp on what how most people live their lives, and the amount of time that he is on twitter, two or three fairly unpleasant incidents really isn't that many. It is fairly clear though that Tesla may have progressed beyond the point where he's the right person to be in charge. We've reached the point where they've developed the cars, they now need someone who knows how to mass produce cars, which is a considerably more traditional Car Industry set of problems. They also need a boss who doesn't think that 16 hour days are normal.

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  • hobbes
    replied
    Originally posted by Evariste Euler Gauss View Post
    I assume I'm not the only one for whom delight in the achievements of Space X is heavily impaired by the thought that it's a company founded and largely owned (?) by that despicable arsehole Musk that is doing it? [Edit: somewhat similar considerations apply to Tesla's progress in electric car technology.]
    Arsehole he may be, but despicable? He's ploughed his billions into electric vehicles, solar tiles, home battery storage and sustainable, recyclable launch capabilities.
    He needs a kick up the arse to improve his employment practices (but to put it into context, his behaviour isn't unusual given US employment laws) and he could lady off twitter, but that aside?
    On balance the world would be much better if a few more billionaires acted like him rather than buying football clubs to whitewash their human rights records.

    Leave a comment:


  • ursus arctos
    replied
    I agree with you on both points, but in terms of perception, the Space X achievement seems more incredible. In part because I was born into an era where it was absolutely taken for granted that NASA would successfully fulfill JFK's pledge.

    Musk owns a majority of SpaceX's equity and controls over 3/4 of the votes.

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  • Evariste Euler Gauss
    replied
    I assume I'm not the only one for whom delight in the achievements of Space X is heavily impaired by the thought that it's a company founded and largely owned (?) by that despicable arsehole Musk that is doing it? [Edit: somewhat similar considerations apply to Tesla's progress in electric car technology.]
    Last edited by Evariste Euler Gauss; 18-04-2019, 14:12.

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  • Evariste Euler Gauss
    replied
    Originally posted by ursus arctos View Post
    Space X just landed all three boosters for Falcon Heavy for the first time ever (two on their landing pads and the center one on a drone ship).

    I don't have words to convey just how amazing that is to someone who watched every Gemini launch and recovery.
    Well, yes, it is very impressive indeed, but I think it's far more amazing that NASA were able to land men on the moon and bring them home safe in 1969-1972, given the then state of technology.

    Leave a comment:

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