About Me

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I live in the Florida Keys. I've been in the military and worked inside the Beltway. I've had 22 technical books and two novels published. I fly, boat, dive, shoot, and swim pretty damn well.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Will the Japanese Make the Space Elevator "Real"

This ARTICLE .. from the TIMES of LONDON of all places.. talks about the Japanese investing a pretty small amount of money (a fraction of what our financial mess is costing) to create a practical Space Elevator. Like so many, this engineering idea always caught me as a lot more practical than blasting chemicals to create thrust. It's worth reading! This one engineering project could literally change the world...
Change the world... hmmm... I sense a sequel to "A Glint in Time" with this theme. After all, when we left our heroes at the end of the book they already had a presence in Japan .. "Honto! Desu-ne?"

Thursday, September 18, 2008

How the Chevy Volt Might Effect the Electric Grid

THIS STORY from autobloggreen.com describes the national impact of people plugging in every night. It's an interesting discussion. But say, the Chevy Volt for 2010 (that's a year from now... as strange as it seems) isn't as bad looking as I feared...

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Pentagon Worries About Virtual Reality Terror Games Becoming Real

In this WIRED Magazine article, The American military and intelligence communities are increasingly worried that would-be bin Ladens might gather in a virtual world, to plan a real-life attack.

This article uses "World of Warcraft" as an example and there are certainly plenty of online venues where this could happen. However, this all seems too exotic to me. It would be pretty simple to just invoke a message thread, video conference, or even a voice conference to do the same thing. But, it made a great Pentagon PowerPoint (okay, maybe it was Flash Video) presentation! ... _._

Monday, September 8, 2008

A neat heat recovery system for internal combustion engines

This is a neat heat recovery system for internal combustion engines, but would it work on airplanes and would it be worth its weight in RANGE? Could we do without an alernator? That would be good.

Trade-off between alernator weight and exhaust gas turbine weight? Really, I only need a few watts of power in an LSA. Landing lights? Who needs landing lights in an LSA? I usually charge at 1 amp! Twelve watts isn't much power and I carry around this huge alternator to produce it?!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Google Earth Captures a Cruise Missile Over Utah

And.. as many nations are finding out, Google Earth has nifty military applications. Newer public non-governmental satellites coming on line will have even greater resolution. Althought they won't be "free".

See THIS Link ... is this Google shot a SLCM?

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Cable Network News Coverage of Hurricanes

Ugh! Gustov was Another true low spot in TV "journalism." Watching some guy tell you (for 5 long minutes) that it is windy and blowing where he is doesn't do much to inform. And there are two or three more of these storms lined up out there. The Weather Channel ad sales people have already called the Atlanta BMW dealer looking to upgrade their leases!

Watching CNN's Rick Sanchez trying to find SOME PROBLEM... ANY PROBLEM to uncover or complian about was unsettling. Talk about tabloid journalism.

WWL radio had the best on-air coverage of Gustov... far beyond all others. Because they are so local and have such good radio coverage, they have clout. Their on-air people interviewed the police chief and the fire chief and every elected sheriff and Parish President for 150 miles around. And they did NEW interviews (not the same old recording) over and over. These officials all wanted to impress the public with how well informed they were, so as a listener you really learned something.

In the military we call it all-source correlation. The cable channels need to do more news correlation and reporting and less news creation.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Want to know about Sarah Palin? Read this TIME Magazine Story!

Two BlackBerries and a Baby. That works!

Anyone who wants to dig in the dirt about Sarah Palin needs to read this TIME Magazine story, just posted.

"People in Wasilla are Alaskan tough, so not only does a thing like teen pregnancy not seem like anyone's damn business, but it's also not seen as the calamity so many people in the lower 48 might think it is."


Way to go TIME! (I never thought I'd say that!)

Sometimes MY Air Force does GREAT Things

Yes, I get very pissed at the leadership of THE Air Force for stupidity in things like UAV pilot manning and trying to kill the A-10. But, often the people in MY Air Force do great things.

Neat Story on Precision Parachute Drops in the - Stan

I spent (cold and wet) weeks of my life on drop zones watching parachutes decorate trees across North Carolina. This JPADS technology for precision parachute drops is exciting!
Actually, these are "robotic" or at least "programmable and self-guiding" systems. Hundreds of little parachuting robots gliding into your country. Hmmm.. the salvation of the "vertical envelopment" community?
See THIS LINK for more information at http://strategypage.com/ Pages of USAF pictures and information HERE.