Monday, 8 October 2012

Waiting for liftoff

SpaceX is launching its second mission to the International Space Station in about an hour and I will certainly be watching and cheering if all goes smoothly.

This mission is important as it will develop confidence that the first successful mission was not just luck. SpaceX is the first purely non-governmental organisation launching returnable spacecraft into Low Earth Orbit (LEO). It makes a lot of sense being able to hand LEO missions to private enterprise and free up NASA to develop bolder and riskier long term goals like manned missions to Mars, or beyond...

I find it a bit depressing that this will go with barely a blip in the media.

But, no worries!

For instance, stories about the hijinks of that perennial dickhead Alan Jones will continue to run and run and run and run... It is, after all the responsibility of the media to report on the IMPORTANT things in life.

Sheesh.

UPDATE. 'Twas a perfect launch. :-) ISS here comes Dragon. Alan Jones who?

Sunday, 16 September 2012

A bridge too far

As most people will have noticed, there has been a lot of kerfuffle in recent days about a really badly made video ('Innocence of Muslims') made in the United States, that is insulting to Islam - not that that is particularly hard to do.

And there have been riots around the world about it. Islamic fundamentalists are out there, doing what they do best, and the global death toll so far is reported as 9.

Over a really poorly made YouTube video.

I have watched some of it, and it is painful. Its sins against the crafts of acting and film-making greatly outnumber those against the long deceased prophet of Islam.

And so it came to pass that the Islamic fundie community of Sydney said: "Me too!" and collectively went off and practised their democratic right to protest.

Good for them. It is indeed their right as citizens of this country to do that.

Then I saw this sign.

Whilst I am pretty sure this is just testosterone fuelled bluster, I am not sure that the waver of this particular sentiment actually deserves to BE in this country. It crosses a line, into an area of religious insanity the vast majority of Australians would have absolutely no time for. This 'sentiment' is plain evil, and is hopefully just as abhorrent to the mainstream Islamic community here.

Hmm.

Am I overreacting?

A bit of a tidy up.

I haven't posted anything new here in several months and I feel guilty about that. It isn't as if I have a huge readership holding their collective breaths waiting for me to publish - I would be lucky if my faithful reader numbered in more than a single digit.

But as this is as close as I have ever come to maintaining a diary, I feel it is my duty to try and continue.

Looking back, I also see that my style falls into the trap of being an "angry old white guy." And for the most part I guess that is pretty true, but that particular persona is WAY too common on the 'net. Time for a new look.

Although it goes against the warts and all nature of a true diary, I have cleaned out a few of my more recent posts, and have resolved to put the "cranky self-righteous smartarse" to one side. At least, most of the time.

Another motivation to get back into my blog is that a few months back I finally did something I have consistently failed to do for decades:

I have finally learned to touch-type.

I may not be particularly fast, but I can do it, and this is a great way to practise...