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August 18, 2019


Always reward the unexpected-but-correct approaches. That way the teacher/tester might learn something new too.

Example : The young Gauss summing 1..N correctly in seconds as n(N+1)/2 which the teacher didn't know.

Interesting idea for terraforming. I would think just try some type of algae or something and see if that gets an atmosphere kick started instead of nuking the place.

Stu--Yes, that's a good example of advanced methodology. Gauss' Method for those who care.

Really? You had no comment on bean bags? I am shocked!

Ingineer--For either method to make a real difference would take long enough that the human race may not/probably won't last long enough to see it. It might be that we may screw up the planet for otherwise happy habitation by some other species yet unknown. Neither seems to be a short term plan. (We exhort people to think long term, so why am I whining?)

How is your own terraforming going?

I know that we currently try very hard not to take any Earth pathogens when we send robots to Mars.
I love the low tech bean bag method. Everything old is new again.

The German navy doesn't use beanbags : 'cos none of them are still functional :-(

Ingineer--Were I a gambler, I would wager that we haven't been entirely successful in preventing the escape of our pathogens onto any extra-terrestrial bodies with which we've had contact. I give us credit for trying, though.

Yes, old becomes new. I still have a sweater from 1955. (Don't ask why. I couldn't come up with an answer!)

Stu--What is the antecedent of "them" in your last comment? Since the German navy is supposedly functional, in a defensive posture, I'm trying to figure out how beanbags can possibly not be functional. I'm stumped - one more time!

Germany military currently has only 58 helicopters of which only 13 are currently airworthy.
The navy has no carriers and only 6 submarines of which only 2 are currently seaworthy.
Only 100 boats in total. The military is in such a poor state of repair . . . :-(

Beanbags are only functional if they sink when lost/thrown overboard, so an enemy can't recover them. I've seen modernised plastic ones which float because some bean-counter forgot to specify that! :-(

Stu--A-a-ah, I'm glad I asked. Writing specifications can be tricky. Been there, done that! (Or, bean there?)

Coding is all just so much mumbo-jumbo to me. I don't know why since I love computers and have been using them since DOS days - you'd think I would get at least something about it.

But give me an Excel formula to puzzle out, and I'm usually good. People think I'm a whiz at Excel, but don't make me do anything with VB!

Bogie--And here I expected you to comment on writing specs! I'll leave VB to those who like to do that sort of thing. I never used basic Basic much, let alone Visual. Basic was one of the three languages that I learned in 1974 in a CAD course that Boeing had me take.

I probably benefited from APT (Automatically Programmed Tool" as background info. I did use WAT4/WAT5, which were proprietary versions of Fortran, Those were the programs on which were based Boeing's structural dynamics models that were run on a digital mainframe. Running simulations on the hybrid analog/digital computer was a whole other thing.

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