The Quarterly Review? The Whenever-I-Get-A-Minute Times?
- I fell off the liveblog wagon once it became clear that Russia was definitely not going to thunder run Kiev1.
- Vast quantities of NATO ELINT near Russia – Well, I suppose more than just ELINT. JSTARS is out there, too.
- Kremlinology 2.0: who’s in Putin’s inner circle?
- A constant plotline: Russia can’t deal with Ukraine’s drones – Unexpectedly, given how layered Russian air defenses are.
- Bellingcat on Twitter doing some cluster munitions ID
- Iskander missiles have a decoy capability
- Russia’s logistics situation is baaaad – I remarked to parvusimperator that the only part of the next war you can practice in advance is logistics, and that we Americans have a lot of practice with that, what with flying lobster into the sandbox and all.
- Ground-based air defenses are better than MiGs for Ukraine; here’s a mid-March look at the options – Looking specifically at NATO/aligned inventories.
- Hat cam video from one of the Ka-52s shot down on the first day
- Ukrainian innovation: Stinger-ABM – The madlads shot down a Tochka.
- Among the more impressive Ukrainian captures: a command post from a Krasukha-4 mobile EW system – Western analysts salivate.
- Ukraine’s deepest strike (?) to date: Mi-24s hit a Belgorod oil depot
- Black Sea shipping insurance is through the roof – A tanker that cost $750,000 to charter from Novorossiysk to Italy last year costs $3.5 million now, and the insurance premium is $5 million.
- Greek F-16s have twin-JSOW racks – I wonder if you could get two two-packs per wing, for a smokeless, flameless Macross missile spam effect.
- Photo: cross-section of an Aussie Collins – Real skinny.
- UAE’s EDGE shows off swarming suicide drones – Pardon, ‘loitering munitions systems’.
- We’ve shared the ShinMaywa US-2 before, but as parvusimperator notes, flying boats are cool – Also, there’s apparently an amphibious C-130 coming.
- 608 USAF F-16s to get a big upgrade package – Including, but not limited to, a center display/MFD, AESA, new EW, and more.
- BAE eliminated from Big Army’s light tank program – Now it’s just GDLS.
- Why do we keep on trying to gift Iran nukes?
- Germany to buy F-35s to fill the nuclear strike fighter role – F-35 wins again!
- Marines to test Lightning Carrier concept, with 20 F-35s on Tripoli – Larger peacetime air wing than the British carriers. Just saying.
- Big Army reduces fitness standards for women, older soldiers – “People aren’t hitting our standards, so we should reduce our standards.”
- Full steam ahead on NGSW: 30,000 coming in 2023 – Well, full steam by US procurement standards.
- Biden’s 2023 defense budget hands China victory at sea – “Divest to invest” isn’t a bad idea fundamentally, but I don’t think the Navy can pull it off.
- We are at least making cool new Burkes – DDG-125 is the first of the Block IIIs, with an enhanced radar that can do air defense and missile defense at the same time. It’s also about the end of the line for the workhorse class: size, weight, power, and cooling are all at their limits.
- Who wrote this, China? – “The US shouldn’t be seen to meddle in the affairs of Pacific island nations.” High-minded, but wrong-headed.
- Reddit is the most popular search engine; or, Google search is dying – Why? Because Google results are uniformly trash, unless you’re looking for something technical, in which case they’re only mostly trash. “[search term] reddit” is taking over as the way to find out what real people think.
- I recently came across a top-[things]-guide article about the PC game Warframe that had clearly been written by an AI, with zero retouching. It fused some lingo specific to the game with a bunch of nonsense that appears in the genre of ‘articles about game mechanics’. That’s the downside to large language models: the more niche your interest, the more likely it is you’ll get pablum out of an LLM.
- Cloudflare stays in business in Russia, with safeguards – Its Russian datacenters have a sort of dead man’s switch, if I’m reading this right, and they’ve also taken measures to protect their clients’ SSL keys.
- Russia is running out of cloud storage space – Or they were, as of March 15. I haven’t heard an update since.
- A defensive AR for ordinary people – Parvusimperator-endorsed.
Science and Technology
- Deep reinforcement learning strikes again: tokamak containment – Isn’t this Doc Ock’s origin story?
- Writing a Minecraft server in bash – A classic in the genre of ‘programmer uses wrong tool for job’.
- Deep learning is hitting a wall – A strange thing to post in the wake of DALL-E 2 (the AI that creates pictures based on text descriptions), but I’m pretty much on board with the reasoning.
- Is semiconductor manufacturing a critical national defense issue for America? This Taiwanese think-tanker says no – It might be easier to convince me if the major beneficiary of the US not investing moonshot money in native semiconductor manufacturing wasn’t… Taiwan. Then again, maybe it’s defense-first: “If America can make its own chips, what happens to defense pac— understandings with poor little Taiwan?”
- Inflation – I think this was back when people were still trying to call it transitory.
- The power grid is becoming less reliable – Maybe this is the year for solar… On the other hand, Pittsburgh seems to evade regional power outages and gas shortages, because we’re a distribution nexus for both.
- Fertilizer follies: Belarus potash manufacturer declares force majeuer – Fertilizer price charts looking like a Bitcoin history.
- Catholic priest in Arizona baptizes thousands of people wrong – He said ‘we baptize you’ instead of ‘I baptize you’ in the liturgy. Oops. I will keep any further commentary to myself, in the interest of ecclesiatical diplomacy.
- An inside look at the Sinaloa cartel
- I will continue to spell it this way, because ‘Kyiv’ makes stupid Westerners say ‘Keev’, and that just won’t do. ↩