Now that parvusimperator is back with us, I can focus on this post more than usual. As usual, when I focus on something more than usual it doesn’t just get done. It gets overdone.
Categories arranged not in the usual defense-first fashion, but rather in the order they showed up in our weekly-news-stories channel on the company Hangouts Chat.
- The PAC-12 is terrible – Having married into a USC family, I find my heart warmed by this story.
- First we saw too few Milky Way satellite galaxies, now we see too many – An interesting case where refinements to the theory brought the estimated number of satellite galaxies down, while refinements to measuring tools brought the number of discovered satellite galaxies up. As always, a good read from Quanta. This story came from the daily news dump at Ambient Irony, a blog run by a Twitter acquaintance, which usually has some good stuff in the science/technology field.
- Rocks: the next dark matter detector – When the next Einstein rolls around and upsets the luminiferous-ether-like consensus on dark matter, I’m going to be smiling very smugly from my little corner of the internet. (Or we’ll eventually catch a WIMP, and you’ll never hear from me again.)
- Apple cutting iPhone production – Almost as though they’ve been coasting on their reputation as innovators for far too long, and it’s finally catching up to them.
- The story about the spy microchip on server motherboards we reported on a while ago has fallen apart almost completely – Never let it be said we don’t own up to our mistakes.
- A recent post by Cory Doctorow takes the heterodox position: it’s at least possible – Granted, saying that it’s a coordinated coverup takes believing that it’s one of the largest correct conspiracy theories in history. There’s a 40-minute talk from an expert on firmware attacks who believes it’s “at least possible”, which I haven’t seen yet but intend to listen to as I close out the work day.
- System boundaries and the Linux kernel – Why kernel updates break closed-source drivers, why the closed-source driver people are in the wrong, and why it would be a bad idea to introduce stable APIs for drivers.
- Merchant ships to missile slingers – I’m for it. Q-ships are much more effective when warships dispense with armor.
- Will China go to war over Taiwan? – I don’t know, but I wouldn’t want to test it. I’m curious how much of Taiwan’s electronics industry comes from its need to have a native defense industry.
- The Navy looks to establish a polar port – Timely news, given the bit about Russian Arctic basing last week. Trivia: The Ticonderogii1 were the last American ships with purpose-built deicing systems. Anything later and it’s men on deck with sledgehammers.
- Are FONOPS effective? – ASEAN has its doubts.
- Big Army prepares to fight sci-fi battles – In megacities and underground.
- China’s Type 001A may be in service within months
- Big Army should bring back Pathfinders – They would make a great accompaniment to the sci-fi battlefield.
- On the evolution of the PLAAF – The defense section has been a bit China-heavy lately, but that’s the way the geopolitical cookie crumbles.
- Speaking of China, keep your hands off Subic Bay – Maybe we need to set up a base there again?
- The Navy Times got their hands on the Fort report on the Fitz collision – It’s bad. No, worse than that. Bad.
- About 1/3 of the RAF is in the ‘sustainment fleet’ – Elsewhere, I found a quote from an RAF spokesman saying that the sustainment fleet is aircraft undergoing upgrades and long-term maintenance, as well as those in storage, so it isn’t like 30% of the RAF is being cannibalized to keep the other 70% flying. Honestly, compared to (for instance) Germany, 70% in the forward fleet isn’t bad at all.
- Navy looking for a sixth-generation fighter to replace the Super Hornet – Not to be glib, but isn’t that the F-35C’s job?
The Акула/Typhoon-class boomers, in pictures
- I came across this photo on Twitter… – …and thought it was worth a section unto itself. It’s really easy to miss how enormous they were. In the picture above, it’s next to a Grisha of some flavor. Here’s one next to an Udaloy, and the Udaloy only looks bigger because less of it is under the water.
- Here’s a handy schematic of the pressure hulls, which helps clarify their arrangement inside the light hull.
- Lastly, here are some interior shots of the crew spaces – This is a different set of photos from the one I usually see floating around, taken of TK-17 Архангелск shortly after her decommissioning, so everything is in much better shape than other sets I know of.
- Why is the DOS path character backslash?
- King Tut’s dagger came from meteor iron – They determined this with x-ray fluorescence, a technology we have some acquaintance with here at the office from a past customer.
- Why is all the shutdown talk focused on government workers missing paychecks, and not on the work that isn’t getting done? – The article suggests maybe because there isn’t much value to the work that’s getting done. I haven’t worked in government, and am unlikely to do so in my lifetime, so I leave that judgement to people closer to the matter.
- The US has apparently declared Maduro an illegitimate president – Which is basically saying, “If you guys want to have a coup, we’re cool with it.”
- This is definitely the accepted plural. ↩