Bellinghman

Bellinghman

  • Commented on The Evil Business Plan of Evil (and misery for all)
    but you are probably younger than I am Having met both of you I think Greg is pretty much the same age as you. He is I believe retired and you are not quite yet, but that's down to you...
  • Commented on The Evil Business Plan of Evil (and misery for all)
    Versions are used in numerous places - the HK one is the Octopus card, the Dublin one is the Leap card and Montréal has the OPUS card. And yes, usually they're fine, the machines are reliable and it's quicker than...
  • Commented on The Evil Business Plan of Evil (and misery for all)
    Ah, I did call it correctly on Twitter. I suspect your view that the best and brightest used to work on great projects and we don't now may on closer inspection be an overly rose-tint on your optician's prescription. Yes,...
  • Commented on Aftermath
    Local guide, and verbal, as our coach circumnavigated it. On checking, yep, it looks like the Tallboy raids were on the pens at Brest, and there was only an assumption that any similar raids on Trondheim would not cause any...
  • Commented on Aftermath
    Yeah, agreed that a backpack bomb would have little effect. And that several tonnes of high quality explosive, inside a proper casing that has penetrated into the ground and is in intimate contact with it, can take out a tunnel....
  • Commented on Aftermath
    Ah, your item uses an auger. How delightfully quaint. The shaped charge is something like Charge Demolition Mk.2: basically a small beehive, designed so the explosive squashes a metal cone into a supersonic slug that penetrates into the ground. You...
  • Commented on Aftermath
    That does however require managing to rupture it. That lining currently has pressing in on it all that water/gravel/rock. It's strong enough to take that inward load, with a probable minimum 100% margin. The force of the explosion now has...
  • Commented on Aftermath
    As for the Alpine tunnels, I don't think you could bring down the roof. For going through mountains, the traditional method is to drill holes into the rockface, pack those holes with explosive which you detonate, clear the debris, and...
  • Commented on Aftermath
    If you were to travel on the #10 tram in Basel (Switzerland), out to the western end of the line, you would cross an international border twice: it has one stop at Leymen in Alsace. Chances are against even seeing...
  • Commented on Aftermath
    I remember that route about thirty years ago - it was very different then. For one thing, the road approaching the actual border was actively disrepaired, full of ruts and potholes to make it difficult to get up any speed...
  • Commented on Who Got Fantasy in My Science Fiction?
    remarkably unlikely to be the product of chance. Well, you have to admit that they're right. That skew is prima facie evidence that something's interfering with the data. I loved the way they covered their arses on the matter of...
  • Commented on Who Got Fantasy in My Science Fiction?
    what affects me in one way is highly likely to affect someone else very differently. Very true, which is why anaesthesiologists are specialists. Anecdata: about 15 years ago, my wife managed to slip on ice and dislocate her elbow. She...
  • Commented on Aftermath
    I'm surprised no one's talking about corruption in the vote count. Probably because one poll was nearly spot on: the exit poll. That was the poll that asked actual voters how they had just voted. That poll seems to tally...
  • Commented on The Scottish Political Singularity, Act Two
    Anecdata: having in my youth lived and worked in Scotland (the fair city of Dundee), I never once felt any hostility from the locals. It's possible that the country has changed since then, and it's also possible the relatively small...
  • Commented on Who Got Fantasy in My Science Fiction?
    Nope. American, are you? I've met Paws. While he might live on Long Island, if he does it's not the one in New York. (Did you know that the Outer Hebrides, aka Na h-Eileanan Siar, is so known?)...
  • Commented on Inverted realities
    ObGrammarPeddant: 'virii'? What's a virius? (The plural 'viri' would be vaguely defensible if 'virus' were a masculine singular (it's not), but the actual word you're after is 'viruses'.) ObMuphry: 'Peddant'...
  • Commented on Inverted realities
    OGH isn't much of a visual media fan, due to eye issues. However ... My wife and I intend to see it (not tonight, perhaps), and we're older than you are. But we've also seen all the predecessor films, so...
  • Commented on Inverted realities
    Sadly, I have to conclude that it's a jolly good thing cats became social parasites, because they're clearly not capable of holding an intention for long enough to survive in any other niche. You just described a cat who'd far...
  • Commented on On the Great Filter, existential threats, and griefers
    In principle anything can see you, yes. One can speculate how much stealth technologies might have been applied though. A matt black satellite, one using a nuclear battery to avoid having solar panels, that takes care to have the heat...
  • Commented on On the Great Filter, existential threats, and griefers
    I'd not thought of the guidance side of things. I'd read the question as to whether the Kessler cascade would be so thick as to prevent ICBMs penetrating it. To which the answer would be, probably not. Your average missile...
  • Commented on On the Great Filter, existential threats, and griefers
    You could also ask "If landing rockets are so good on the Moon, why do we still use helicopters here on Earth?" The reason is pretty much the same - some things work better in vacuo than in atmosphere, and...
  • Commented on On the Great Filter, existential threats, and griefers
    I suspect he's actually replying to your comment #386, where you mention T J Bass, author of two known novels. (I always remember Godwhale instead, for some reason. Perhaps because the cover was sensawunda without starships.)...
  • Commented on On the Great Filter, existential threats, and griefers
    The downside is you need it to be pretty large and close to the following ship to avoid too many particles reinvading the passage before the ship arrives. The classic solution is to put as much mass as you can...
  • Commented on The Biggest Little SF Publisher you never heard of pulls on the jackboots
    A few years ago, my sister became a US citizen, having lived there for a couple of decades and even having married and then divorced a local. She's kept British citizenship, but it's very much the case that that's something...
  • Commented on An exercise in futility
    Yeah, given any pair of points, there's an infinite number of curves that connect them. Add another point, you've divided that infinite number by infinity, and you've still got an infinity. Repeat ad absurdem. Here the Fibonacci sequence is the...
  • Commented on Dysprosium (Eastercon) schedule
    Ah. Yes, if that's the case, then no. (My worst experiences have been US airlines. One such experience being rescued by the fact the onward BA flight waited for us. Yeah, our luggage didn't make the flight, but it was...
  • Commented on Dysprosium (Eastercon) schedule
    even I know that LHR is an hell-hole - even if the Con hotel is right next door What they really need to do is build another airport, a decent one, next door. Give it its own station, its own...
  • Commented on Dysprosium (Eastercon) schedule
    The modern popularity of the vampire story - is it all Joss Whedon's fault? (I suspect 'Probably yes', in that he got a couple of hundred episodes out of Buffy + Angel, which is an enormous shadow to cast over...
  • Commented on An exercise in futility
    My wife was[1] fluent in Swedish (with a sufficiently good Stockholm accent as to fool natives), and she likes to watch Wallander and similar, which over here have English subtitles. One of the things that amuses her is the subtitling...
  • Commented on An exercise in futility
    I said "Black's alright for me" just as my teacher had done. Oh the can of worms that is cultural differences across time and space. Yeah, some texts are distinctly problematic, even though within their original culture they may have...
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