Friday Linkzookery – 15 Feb 2008

Poland will deploy Helicopters, UAVs, and More Troops to Southern Afghanistan for Counter-Insurgency Operations
Gotta love the Poles.

Tolkien estate sues New Line Cinema
New Line hasn’t paid any of their share? Are you kidding me?

“Star Wars: Clone Wars” hits theaters in August
The less George Lucas was involved, the better it will be.

Silicon Insider: Solar Companies Glow Despite Economic Slump
First Solar Inc. and SunPower Corp. Ride High on Solar Energy Innovation

Key lawmaker predicts 2nd F-35 engine will survive
We’ll see.

History Channel Rant
Not as good as it once was, but still better than most.

Jules Verne ATV Launch Approaching
March 8 is the scheduled launch date for the first Automated Transfer Vehicle, which has about three times the capacity of the Progress. It can also boost the station’s orbit.

Are we making it easy for China?
I’d say “yes.”

Medium Image

BB-67 MONTANA, U.S. Navy Battleship: Why She Matters Today

12×16″ with actual armor. How could that possibly matter today?

Limbaugh sees no reconciliation with McCain
Blue-on-blue in the GOP.

Titan’s Surface Organics Surpass Oil Reserves on Earth
So let’s build a pipeline, already. Do I have to think of everything?

Russia in Ukraine missile threat
The whole “we’ll target you with our missiles” threat is pretty stupid. Like everyone doesn’t have everyone else on speed dial already.

Hurley checks out Sprecher Brewery
4 8 15 16 23 42

Boeing readies tanker for delivery to Japan
FAA gives KC-767 the OK

What is a Combat Handgun?
Well, for starters, it’s probably dangerous. Someone might get hurt.

It’s bad juju when the corpsman starts coaching folks on pistol technique.
Doc in the Box is back in the box. And showing Marines how to shoot a pistol. Effing A, Bubba!

Soldier finds love in pen pal exchange
Somebody get this guy a job.

Danish Newspapers Reprint Controversial Muhammad Cartoon After Death Plot Foiled
The newspapers said they republished the cartoon to show their firm commitment to freedom of speech after the arrest Tuesday of three people accused of plotting to kill the man who drew the cartoon

Northrop Grumman To Build DDG 1001


  1. Yea – we are actually building the DDG 1001. After an anticipated build time of 6 years, the ship will go live in 2014. 100$ says the within 6 months of this tub actually making it out sea, if will be discovered that she is unsuitable for open sea activity and that the ship stabilization system is insuficient. 200$ says, that the junction between the all composite deckhouse and the steel ship will show cracks and design flaws such that within one year the ship will require extensive modification. 500$ says, that ships crew will balloon well past the projected 149 (go to at least 250)as the automated systems will prove to be inadequate. 1000$ says, that this ship will never be built.

  2. Here’s some more of your tax dollars down the tube:

    John Young, the Pentagon’s top weapons buyer, certified that upgrades on the newer model planes were necessary for national security reasons, staving off a possible cancellation of the overall program, said Pentagon spokesman Chris Isleib. Under the restructuring plan, the cost of the pared-down C-5 modernization program will drop to $7.7 billion from last September’s estimate of $17.5 billion for the overall program. That compares with initial estimates of $11.1 billion when the program began in November 2001, he said. ‘This is a good news story. We have saved the taxpayers $9.8 billion dollars, and we have an aggressive new plan to manage this program,’ Young said in a statement. – Reuters

    Funny the way they always cut these programs in production, where the contractor makes less money, and never in development where they make the most. I wonder if anyone in this congressional review thought to ask why the C-5 cost twice to do the same thing that was done to the C-130J for less of an upgrade? Nah, they never ask a question they don’t want to know the answer to. Funny though, how it took half as much money and half the time to do the privately funded development of the C-130J. I’d be interested in knowing why it cost so much less, wouldn’t you? I mean, it’s your money.

  3. The first flight of the short-take-off-and-vertical-landing (STOVL) Marine Corps variant of the Joint Strike Fighter test aircraft will be delayed 30 days due to a problem that occurred Feb. 4 during tests of a Pratt and Whitney F135 engine, according to the JSF program office. A test cell on the F135 engine that was being tested in West Palm Beach, FL, ‘had a high cycle fatigue failure’ of a third-stage, low-pressure turbine (LPT) blade that was almost identical to a similar failure in August, Cheryl Limrick, a spokeswoman for the program office, said in a Feb. 14 e-mail response to questions from Inside the Navy. The August failure delayed testing of the conventional-take-off-and-landing (CTOL) variant test aircraft. … The first problem with the F135 test engine occurred in the summer. ‘It was on the test stand in the lift mode,’ said William Balderson, the Navy’s deputy assistant secretary for air programs, in an interview with ITN Feb. 12. ‘Enough vibration was created to break the third stage blade. Last weekend it happened again.’ He said that after looking at pictures of the blade, he saw that the place where it broke and the shape of the fracture were ‘almost identical in the two incidents.’ In the fall, a manufacturing defect was discovered in the BF-1’s lift fan rotor, necessitating the delivery of a new fan, sister publication Inside the Air Force reported Jan. 4. Marine Corps Brig. Gen. David Heinz, deputy JSF program officer, said that problem would not significantly hinder the program, adding that it was a ‘manufacturing defect, not a design defect.’ One of the problems was that the tip of the fan was blended at the top, causing a ‘slight internal crack,’ he said. ‘We now have a different manufacturing process using electron beam welding that has solved that problem.’ The other problem was caused by a milling machine that removed too much material from a specific spot [damn those milling machines anyway], according to Heinz. Lockheed planned to deliver a replacement fan by Feb. 10. This month, the BF-1 is scheduled to go through structural-coupling and ground-vibration tests. In March, the instrumentation will be checked out, followed by engine runs, Heinz said. – Inside the Navy

  4. Just in time for ‘Engineer’s Week’ a game show where the prize is you get a dead end job where someone else gets to take credit for your intellect and work. The real irony is, anyone stupid enough to fall for this crap is too dumb to make it through the college course work. Gotta love that.

    Teams from several area high schools will compete for trophies and prizes from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday at the Orlando Science Center in honor of National Engineers Week. Lockheed Martin Corp. will present ‘Who Wants to be an Engineer,’ a science- and math-themed game show patterned after the television show Who Wants to be a Millionaire, in which student teams will compete for a donation to their school’s math and science departments. The Orlando Science Center is host for the annual event created by Lockheed Martin. The game teaches students about the effect of math, science and engineering on their daily lives. Students are asked science and math questions and given multiple choices for the answers. Just like the TV show, they can select a ’50/50′ elimination or select a friend or teacher to help them with the answer. The semifinals of the competition will be in OSC’s Cinedome, and the finals will take place in the Darden Theater. – Orlando Sentinel

  5. Oh, this is perfect for ‘engineer’s week’. There is a video about a group that advises companies on how they can place ads for engineers that can’t be filled domestically. This way the company can get approval for an H-1b visa slot so they can go overseas and hire someone. Very classy. Damn, I feel more special as each day of ‘engineer’s week’ passes. Makes me proud to be a prospective member of the North American Union, eh amigos?

  6. Here is an article from Business Week regarding H-1B visa workers that are being brought to America to be mistreated and abused. In many cases, even though what they were promised was low compared to what an American engineer would expect to be paid, these workers were getting half of that. Happy Engineer’s Week!!!!