Showing posts from September, 2008

SpaceX Falcon 1 Makes It To Space

In a week where we faced the melt-down of Wall Street and the death of Paul Newman, it's uplifting (no pun intended) to read that SpaceX's forth attempt to achieve orbit succeeded. The only stories so far about this success are on Wired and SpaceflightNow. While the launch of the Chinese Shenzhou 7 with the Chinese first-ever space walk is important (especially to the Chinese), what sets Falcon 1 apart from every other rocket of its type to date is that it's privately funded and every element is of new design. And it achieved orbit.

My hat is off to the terrific team at SpaceX. May you have even greater successes in the future.


Another article from Wired: "Space Visionaries Prove Naysayers Wrong — Again"

Update 2

It's a success: Valley billionaire launches rocket into orbit

Update 3

Here's a more complete article from Spaceflight Now. One additional important milestone was achieved yesterday; the second stage engine re-fired to circularize the orbit.

Notes from the Field: iPod Touch 2G

Three weeks ago I gave into my lust for gadgets once again and picked up a 32GB iPod Touch 2G from a local Apple store (Mall at Millenia). I've spent only a few hours each day (at the very most) setting things up, adding songs and other content and just using it as a device. No attempt to hack into the Touch (although I've Googled a bit looking for the state of iPhone/Touch version 2.1.1 jailbreak). I spent $400 on this little jewel, and so far I haven't regretted it. This is in stark contrast to my experience with the Nokia 770. Here, in no particular order, are my experiences to date. Where possible I contrast and compare this with the 770.
Display - The display is the first feature you experience when you turn the device on. The resolution is 480 by 320 (landscape) resolution. By contrast, the 770 (and N800 and N810) are 800 by 480. While the aspect ratios vary slightly between the two, the big difference is in resolution footprint: the 770 is obviously larger than the T…

Win some, loose some

Two interesting stories from the Linux camp; Lenovo is removing Linux (specifically Suse Linux Enterprise Desktop, or SLED) as a pre-installed OS option for some of its notebooks, and an article on the Linux Devices site shows that Linux on smartphones dropped over 15 percent.

The Distribution That Dares Not Speak Its Name

Lenovo's dropping SLED as an offering on selected notebooks is going to be something of a difficult issue for a lot of people. On the one hand you've got the slavering blood-thirsty hordes led by Boycott Novell screaming for Novell's economic blood over Novell's agreement with Microsoft. That group will see this action by Lenovo as some sort of Divine Vengeance against the Great Novellian Apostasy. And then you've got the other end of the spectrum who stamp their little feet in frustration and shrilly complain, like SJVN, that Lenovo isn't providing enough choice, and they Just Won't Buy Their Product Any More. So there.

Of course the bigges…

Becoming One with the Borg

No, not Microsoft. Apple. My wife purchased a new Macbook over the weekend. You know, the 'low end' model, 13" screen, white only, 2.1 GHz Core 2 Duo, 1GB DRAM, 120GB hard drive. With the exception of me spending five minutes turning it on and setting it up for her, it's been her machine and she's loved every minute of it.

Judy's purchase of the Macbook marks the second Mac in the household. The first, a 20" iMac, was purchased Christmas 2006 for my youngest daughter, who subsequently took it with her up to F.S.U. It's been rock solid and, with the Mac version of Microsoft Office installed, it's done everything she's needed for school and then some. And of course I don't need to mention that wife and both daughters have their very on iPods; youngest daughter with a second generation Nano and wife and oldest daughter with a third generation.

This leaves my oldest daughter with her Toshiba running Vista SP1 and me with my motley collection of …