David Knights' Weblog

June 6, 2019


Filed under: Technology — dknights @ 12:42 pm
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A big part of routine spaceflight is about economics.  This isn’t well appreciated by the general public.  This column summarizes some of the advances that SpaceX is making in regard to those issues.  If SpaceX can routinely fly reusable rockets on a weekly basis, then a fleet of even 5 rockets translates into 260 launches a year.  More launches= lower costs= a truly fast development of this new frontier.  What a time to be alive.


May 29, 2019

Venezuela update

Filed under: Politics — dknights @ 9:45 am
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Its been a while since we reviewed the situation in Venezuela.  Frankly, its like passing a car accident on the road.  You slow down and look. You don’t want to, but you do.  If you are like me every time you do you say a quick silent prayer for the safety of those involved.  The same goes for Venezuela. On one level, it is fascinating to watch a country fall apart in real time.  Also, while watching it happen, you have to remember that the Venezuelan people got themselves into this mess by voting for “free stuff”.  That doesn’t make it any less heartbreaking.

UPDATE:  It is even tough on the criminals

May 14, 2019

The Modelling News

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 3:54 pm
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I nice general interest website with lots of modeling news on all scales and genres. 

May 13, 2019

Wouldn’t it be funny

Filed under: Politics — dknights @ 1:57 pm
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Wouldn’t it be funny if the problems in Venezuela caused problems in Cuba while Cuba tried to prop up Venezuela?  Could be happening.  I will be keeping an eye on this.

May 11, 2019

Hypersonic vehicles

Filed under: Technology — dknights @ 12:53 am
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The US is on track to test two hypersonic vehicles this year according to this report.  If you haven’t been paying attention, one of the big fears being pushed is that the Chinese are “way ahead” in developing a hypersonic vehicle or warhead.  Frankly, I can’t tell how much of this is “missile gap” hype (get it? Hype.  Sometimes I amuse myself) and how much is real.  It certainly does appear that hypersonic vehicles and lasers are going to be two important areas of weapons development in the near future.

May 8, 2019

Well, this isn’t good news

Filed under: Politics,Technology — dknights @ 6:55 am
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Looks like China has laid down steel for their third aircraft carrier.  Right now we don’t know much other than it is supposed to be their first “full sized” carrier.  Stay tuned.

The return of “Pinks and Greens”

Filed under: General — dknights @ 12:02 am
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I, for one, am happy to see this change.

May 7, 2019

Libyan F.1

Filed under: General — dknights @ 10:52 am
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Reports are that a Portuguese pilot flying as a mercenary for rebel forces in Libya has been shot down by Libyan National Army forces.  More as the story develops.

April 24, 2019

N9M crash

Filed under: General,Modeling — dknights @ 4:30 pm
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The only remaining example in the world of an Northrop N9M crashed recently destroying the aircraft.  This brings up a position that I have held for some time, namely that if an aircraft is the only example of its type existing in the world, then it shouldn’t be flown, even if it is in flyable condition.  I’ve had debates with other aviation enthusiasts who feel differently, but to me the risk of losing such unique items outweighs the joy of seeing them in flight.  Thoughts?

April 10, 2019

A good guy with a gun

Filed under: Legal — dknights @ 2:13 pm
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More and more, we are seeing these stories that used to never be reported.

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