Sunday, July 31, 2016

A Further Indication of Why Climate Change Must be a Priority for National Security

That an ounce of prevention ought to nearly always be worth a pound of cure can be expressed in a new way, if you look at it the terms of the effects of extreme environmental stress, and the potential that creates for increased, armed, hostilities between nations and various ethnic groups. In that context it might not be much of a stretch at all to say that successful measures to address carbon in the air, or whatever poison pumped into the ground, or our oceans, enacted now would be worth any number of new weapons systems, or new divisions so equipped, to handle the collateral damage after one catastrophic event or another. And this would be even more so if we could combine diverted arms spending towards specific development efforts with doing such things in coordination with those geopolitical players out there that we're already feeling increased tensions with.

This is something I've already talked about in regards to the Chinese, and the increased tensions in the South China Sea (see here and here--in the fourth paragraph especially). It is, after all, energy, as well as ocean fisheries, that cause a significant portion of these new tensions.

The bottom line here is that there are things, of a mutual benefit to both us, them, and the planet, that we could develop together that would ease both pollution and international tensions.

How climate disasters can drive violent conflict around the world


Saturday, July 30, 2016

Ligher Than Air Lift Supported Towers

Back in March I had the Idea that some form of space launch platform could be built using lighter than air lift tech. In my approach the idea was to have a series of doughnut shaped lift rings through which the the actual tower would rise up through, and through which support would be provided.

Turns out that I'm not the only one who thinks the idea has merit. Check out this link to the patent just applied for by a Cannadian firm:

Canadian firm patents inflatable space elevator

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Imagine Virtual Reality Development Environments

As a developer, one the main tools I worked with was one of the various iterations of Microsoft's Visual Studio; something referred to in the industry as an IDE, or integrated development environment.

These can be useful precisely because they can provide you, inside of one creation management system, a comprehensive way of not only creating the integrated bits -- the various objects, whether buttons, or list selectors, or control windows into other programs, like spreadsheets, or databases etc, as well as whatever coded specifics needed to accompany these objects (all of which, of course were simply abstracted bits of their own code), but of keeping them all organized into logical structures that were, hopefully, a great deal easier to keep track of.

In my mind, one the most wonderful aspects of virtual systems, will be the expansion of such integrated development environments way beyond the capacities of their two dimensional brethren of today. And this will of course apply to a great deal more than just application development systems. Just think what such things could do for mathematics development, or engineering development systems.

You've already seen some part of this displayed by the Tony Stark Character in the Iron Man, and Avenger movies, when he manipulates design constructs in any of his labs. Even that, however, is a limited presentation of what complete immersion into an unlimited 3D design space would allow; especially one tied to on demand simulation feedback. It's a breathtaking picture and one that makes me quite jealous of the fact that it wasn't available in my day.

VR Painting Looks Silly In Real Life, But The Finished Product Is Stunning

Swinging around what looks like a Wii remote in front of a green screen does not look like the most artistic act, but inside the VR world, this woman is creating a true masterpiece.
SekiguchiAimiCHANNEL Via Reddit

Friday, July 22, 2016

Pandering to the Dark Side...

...Or, to put it another way, giving in to every type of fear in the toolbox of the powerful to sell us on the con that every problem has a simple, easily sloganized, solution; where "solution" is more about closing down on thinking, feeling or engaging in what life challenges us with. The kind of shutdown that enshrines cold comfort, and the abstract of "order," at the cost of real hope, joyful curiosity, and the broadening of what is possible for the human spirit.

Voting for this self centered, money loving bully will take us down the road where we will learn to mistrust and hate everything we don't fully understand, while at the same time making sure that willful ignorance is something to be applauded and encouraged. This is, I assure you, not the mind set that will keep this planet a thoughtful, loving place, let alone a nurturing base from which to continue our climb to the stars; prospering as much as simply surviving, so that our reach can truly exceed our grasp.

None of the candidates, of course, supports the kind of fundamental change that would actually address what is making us, and the planet, sick of body and heart, but the alternative to this man would at least provide a better chance of an environment where the real change that is needed can not only be expressed, but more importantly, actually listened to.

I know he says things that seems to make sense to some of you because the problems his words supposedly address are real. I would only hope that you would consider that, more than even your average politician would stoop to, he would say anything, pretending every sincerity possible, in order to close the deal. This is because, at his very core, all that really matters is making the sale, and on terms where the seller is the only person of concern. And the only ideal worth preserving is the continuation, and advancement, of your brand.

Just remember, as with any crime contemplated, or conducted, to understand who's culpable you need only follow the money.

Donald Trump Takes America on a Journey to the Dark Side

See Also:

Fact-Check: How Did Trump's Claims Hold Up?

Sunday, July 3, 2016

The Ice Breaker Gap

The Russians are building a lot more icebreakers than we are. And for all matters both strategic, and of resources, around the north pole, that gets a lot of people worried. Unfortunately the usual response to this issue may well be the incorrect one.

At the get go one has to accept that the pitiful few we do have working now is surely not enough; if for no other reason than the safety of passage in the region; especially where it concerns more basic research. The problem here, though, is that the real game everyone is concerned about is who will get the lion's share of resources that may be locked away below all of that ice. And in that, going off and building lots more breakers for ourselves to ensure we get all of the oil, fish, or whatever else, that we can before anybody else does, is unbelievably short sighted.

The long view, and the approach the long view ought to be creating, is where we recognize that doing more resource rape (against the world in general) is a big part of why the ice is melting away up there now. Wouldn't it be something if, instead of the usual knee jerk, cold war, reaction we seem to habitually take with the Russians, we tried to apply both negotiations, and new energy development programs (just to name one) that the Russians, as well as the Chinese, and the rest of the world could partner in. Programs, as I've mentioned before (here, here and here), where we develop sea based wind turbines to produce hydrogen; a fuel that could be a win win for all concerned?

A program like that, in addition to creating a better fuel source, might also produce the infrastructure for a completely new, and far more affordable, type of floating, ocean platform technology. Platform technology that might make creating floating cities a great deal more cost effective than they are now.

Just a thought.

Russia's Latest Nuclear-Powered Icebreaker Extends Arctic Dominance