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serak_the_preparer

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Hello. Good to see old friends (and old enemies, too, believe it or not) on these boards again. But there's no denying the extreme disappointment I'm feeling right now, and I don't doubt I've a lot of company. Some of my misgivings lie in not even knowing where to direct that disappointment: Toward the administrators of Space.com's forums, toward Infopop, toward manufacturers of defective hardware, toward someone else? When you're hurt, you want to blame someone and exact justice; moral outrage is a human privilege. We come into the world (most of us, anyway) surrounded by parents and family who - by rewarding good behavior and punishing bad - give our world a structure and a sense that some things are right and some are wrong. It's one of the things which draws us to religion; we're taught to expect the universe to play fair and stick to a set of rules of which we can approve. Of course, the real world could care less about our expectations.<br /><br />And there it is: A classic long-winded serak_the_preparer ramble. You're still here? Still reading my pointless meanderings? Then perhaps all those deleted posts weren't for nothing, after all. : )<br /><br />Serak is back?<br /><br />Well, no, not really. As with so many others here, thousands of posts are gone and, via an impulse I can no longer even recall, I ended up with caps in the UserID. I like the old lower-case sign-on better.<br /><br />I've never been one to initiate threads. My own sense of order has me preferring less clutter; I like to see related ideas and materials grouped by subject, consolidated in a minimum of threads. Remember the 'amino acids in space' and 'Where are other Earths?' and 'Life on Mars' threads? They went on forever, true, but you always knew where to go for what you wanted.<br /><br />So this is the first - and perhaps also the last - of a few threads I want to try to launch before I say good-bye to Space.com. Since the administrators will not be bringing back old materia
 
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Saiph

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Why are you thinking of leaving serak?<br /><br />I know just how you feel. A fresh start is nice, but it seems sorta hollow. A lot of history is beyond my reach now.<br /><br />Then again, I do get to start the next generation of posts. I can tell all the noobs, "I survived the reset of 7-04!" <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p align="center"><font color="#c0c0c0"><br /></font></p><p align="center"><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">----</font></em></font><font color="#666699">SaiphMOD@gmail.com </font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">-------------------</font></em></font></p><p><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">"This is my Timey Wimey Detector.  Goes "bing" when there's stuff.  It also fries eggs at 30 paces, wether you want it to or not actually.  I've learned to stay away from hens: It's not pretty when they blow" -- </font></em></font><font size="1" color="#999999">The Tenth Doctor, "Blink"</font></p> </div>
 
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heyscottie

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I was thinking that way at first as well, and almost didn't sign up again.<br /><br />But then I started thinking: How often did I really go back and LOOK at any of the old posts? Not very often at all. I generally just read new posts. Occasionally, I'd refer somebody back to old threads or old posts, but most of my time here was spent in the present.<br /><br />So the loss, while still senseless, still does not need to be the end. It can indeed be a new beginning. Think of all those threads that you just WISHED would die, but never did. They're gone, baby!<br /><br />I say let's get started!<br /><br />Scott
 
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serak_the_preparer

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<i>Why are you thinking of leaving serak?<br /><br />I know just how you feel. A fresh start is nice, but it seems sorta hollow. A lot of history is beyond my reach now.</i><br /><br />Yes, it is hollow. Space.com's declaration this 'New Beginning' is all to the good is the equivalent of losing the pivotal battle of a conflict and calling it a victory. Similar in its way to the tragic defeat on Kosovo Polje of the Serbs and their Albanian and Bosnian comrades-in-arms (and other allies) in 1389, which left the Balkans at the mercy of the Turks. Declared all the same by the Serbs as a great victory, even though it ushered in the long unhappy reign of the Ottomans over Serbia. Unlike the Serbs, though, I imagine most of us recognize the great loss the deletion of every Space.com thread ever posted actually represents.<br /><br /><i>But then I started thinking: How often did I really go back and LOOK at any of the old posts?</i><br /><br />Not that often in your case, HeyScottie, nor in a lot of others. But I think there is also a contingent of which I am a part, who invested plenty of time and thought here, and referred on a regular basis to materials archived here.<br /><br />As it is, my hopes of archiving old material are already being dashed. Only a couple of days ago, the thread of which I was personally the most proud was cached on Google (Google cache Wow! signals), but when I checked yesterday it was like everything else from Uplink's past: gone without a trace.<br /><br />Still, whenever I stumble over anything from the pre-Delete era, I will post it here.
 
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serak_the_preparer

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AlokMohan, maybe we can! : )<br /><br />Not all Space.com's material has been wiped from the Web. Any threads I find which - according to my own very subjective criteria - appear worth transferring, I'll post as soon as possible. Where entire threads look interesting, they will appear on their old forums. Standout posts or random links I come across will show up here.
 
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Saiph

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I think it's kinda cool that we can find old SDC stuff elsewhere. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p align="center"><font color="#c0c0c0"><br /></font></p><p align="center"><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">----</font></em></font><font color="#666699">SaiphMOD@gmail.com </font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">-------------------</font></em></font></p><p><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">"This is my Timey Wimey Detector.  Goes "bing" when there's stuff.  It also fries eggs at 30 paces, wether you want it to or not actually.  I've learned to stay away from hens: It's not pretty when they blow" -- </font></em></font><font size="1" color="#999999">The Tenth Doctor, "Blink"</font></p> </div>
 
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spacester

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I have the vast majority of my posts, just mine, not others, saved as word documents.<br /><br />But not for the "We're planning a Mission to Mars" thread.<br /><br />Quite sad, my proudest moment at sdc was that thread.<br /><br />Actually, I do have the start of the follow-on thread, "We're planning a Mission to Mars: Phase 7 is next"<br /><br />Here's a sample:<br /><br /><font color="yellow"><br />Some preliminary results on flight times & deltaV for Earth to Mars and back:<br />1. As the years go by, the distance to travel changes because Mars' orbit is quite eccentric. If you get there near the beginning of summer, Mars is closer to the Sun so the deltaV is much less. Earth's orbit is very close to circular so the time of year (Martian year) for arrival at Mars is a good sole indicator of deltaV, all else being equal.<br />2. We've just passed the launch windows which offer the lowest deltaV for the same time of flight. It gets more expensive as we go along until the launch windows in late 2009 and then it gets better until the launch windows near March 2016.<br />3. I am finding some flight paths in 2016 which would allow Aerocapture without any other braking deltaV. The departure dV for a 182.625 day (1/2 Earth year) flight, tangent to Mars orbit, is 4.57 km/s and arrival dV is only 1.54 km/s<br />4. Note that the often quoted Hohmann (minimum dV) transfer time of 258.855 days is a value for the average circular orbits, so such a flight does not exist in the real solar system. Hohmann transfers vary from 236.2 to 282.0 days.<br /><br />Here are some sample results (sorry for the length), note that the results would change with different parking orbits and also the burn times are assuming some pretty high thrust rockets, only 10 minutes, gravity losses would go up if burn times were around 20 minutes which is fairly typical.<br /></font><br /><br />serak, I feel your loss. I noticed your style of recycling threads after months of dormancy. It was great! I was alw <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> </div>
 
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Saiph

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indeed, it was always a treat.<br /><br />I may, or may not, have a version of my "BH Basics II" thread on my hard-drive. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p align="center"><font color="#c0c0c0"><br /></font></p><p align="center"><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">----</font></em></font><font color="#666699">SaiphMOD@gmail.com </font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">-------------------</font></em></font></p><p><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">"This is my Timey Wimey Detector.  Goes "bing" when there's stuff.  It also fries eggs at 30 paces, wether you want it to or not actually.  I've learned to stay away from hens: It's not pretty when they blow" -- </font></em></font><font size="1" color="#999999">The Tenth Doctor, "Blink"</font></p> </div>
 
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serak_the_preparer

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Saiph, a thread has returned from Beyond the DELETE!<br /><br />mars how will we do it (archival thread re-posting #1)<br /><br />And you're right. It is kind of cool. : )<br /><br />Spacester, there was an Interstellar Mission thread on Missions&Launches which contained some excellent material on the subject. Gone, of course, like all the rest.<br /><br />Very sad.<br /><br />Anything you can bring back, however, please put it back up on the boards. I think it's important that Uplink's membership not passively accept what recently occurred.
 
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serak_the_preparer

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<i>serak, I feel your loss. I noticed your style of recycling threads after months of dormancy. It was great! I was always happy when you did, you have impeccable taste in threads.</i><br /><br />Thanks, Spacester. : ) As someone else here recently put it, think of the man-hours invested in this place - now all for nothing! Unforunately, I can't exercise the degree of judgment used in the old days. I'm just going over the carcass of the Space.com we used to know - now clearly deceased - taking whatever pieces in decent condition I can find, and bringing them here.<br /><br />We placed our trust in the administrators of these sites by posting here. Twice now, however, our investment of time, energy and thought in Uplink has been taken away from us without any warning - once deliberately, and this time apparently by accident. A more forthright approach toward us would have been better, in my opinion, but what's done is done.<br /><br />When I first came across what I think of as 'the Wasteland' here, I had the same hope as everyone else: Whatever the site's administrators could salvage from before the latest purge would be put back up on the boards. As a gesture of courtesy and goodwill toward the long-time members who have spent years here - that's right, years - as well as the newer members waiting to learn just what kind of place this is.<br /><br />That's not going to happen either.<br /><br />So it's up to us!<br /><br />And, in that spirit, here's a new thread just brought back over from the netherworld of deleted posts:<br /><br />The Issue Of Military Radar? (archival thread reposting #2)
 
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Saiph

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when was the first time? <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p align="center"><font color="#c0c0c0"><br /></font></p><p align="center"><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">----</font></em></font><font color="#666699">SaiphMOD@gmail.com </font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">-------------------</font></em></font></p><p><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">"This is my Timey Wimey Detector.  Goes "bing" when there's stuff.  It also fries eggs at 30 paces, wether you want it to or not actually.  I've learned to stay away from hens: It's not pretty when they blow" -- </font></em></font><font size="1" color="#999999">The Tenth Doctor, "Blink"</font></p> </div>
 
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serak_the_preparer

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Good question. I no longer recall all the specifics, and any threads about it have naturally been deleted along with everything else. But weren't you around when it happened? Right around the first anniversary of September 11th, the ***IMPORTANT*** System Downtime Notice was posted on all forums. So I believe the forums were shut down for 'maintenance and upgrade' from Friday, September 13, through noon of Sunday, September 15, 2002. At least, that's my best recollection.<br /><br />All threads which had not been posted to since 12/31/01 were then deleted per Uplink's management. An exception was made for threads in Free Space which were created in response to the tragic events of the previous September 11th.<br /><br />The site's membership was not informed of the forum clean-up ahead of time, but discovered the disappearance of older threads after the weekend. I don't believe a formal after-the-fact explanation was ever offered, but I think one response to members' queries was that there was a concern (legitimate, of course) that members might bump favored threads back to the front pages, interfering with the planned deletions. And this was why none of us were told of the planned erasure of older threads before it was carried out. Of course, this would not have prevented the forum administrators from deleting the number of threads they intended to delete, though it would have forced them to choose a different cut-off date.<br /><br />At the time, I thought the unwillingness to be honest with Uplink's members demonstrated a lack of respect for both parties. Lack of respect for the members, in that it was feared they could not be trusted to handle the information responsibly. Lack of self-respect by the parties willing to resort to (as I saw it) a demeaning deception. But that is only my opinion, and
 
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Saiph

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some older threads were dropped when SDC got a facelift eh?<br /><br />I hadn't noticed. Then I spent even less time in other forums, and even now I rarely dig past the first page or two of posts (I'm active enough that I say my piece when it's current usually).<br /><br /><br />As for them getting rid of posts, it is their business, thier servers etc, so I don't mind them doing some trimming now and again. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p align="center"><font color="#c0c0c0"><br /></font></p><p align="center"><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">----</font></em></font><font color="#666699">SaiphMOD@gmail.com </font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">-------------------</font></em></font></p><p><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">"This is my Timey Wimey Detector.  Goes "bing" when there's stuff.  It also fries eggs at 30 paces, wether you want it to or not actually.  I've learned to stay away from hens: It's not pretty when they blow" -- </font></em></font><font size="1" color="#999999">The Tenth Doctor, "Blink"</font></p> </div>
 
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spacester

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Oh yes, that definitely happened. I remember it pretty mych as Serak describes. I also share his opinions, so yeah, there's other interpretations to be had, but basically, to what serak said: <br /><br />Ditto<br /><br />I would just add that I've realized for a long time that our existence here is merely tolerated. We are a cost center, not a resource. I expect that there are some sdc management folks who think the forums were a mistake and are a liability.<br /><br />It's too bad they don't give us a chance to prove them wrong.<br /><br />And that, my friends, is all I'm going to say on the subject for a while. That and my earlier posts sum it up for me.<br /> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> </div>
 
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Saiph

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I don't know, People hang out here a lot, so the banners get exposure, and I've been known to click on a few. Sometimes out of curiosity, other times to "support" the board.<br /><br />It gets people to Loiter, which helps them in a fashion.<br /><br />Though I'm sure there are cons to it as well.<br /><br />Anybody know what it costs to run a board like this (infopop liscensing, servers, bandwidth...?) cause I don't have a clue. Nor do I know how much, or how, the banners bring in. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p align="center"><font color="#c0c0c0"><br /></font></p><p align="center"><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">----</font></em></font><font color="#666699">SaiphMOD@gmail.com </font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">-------------------</font></em></font></p><p><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">"This is my Timey Wimey Detector.  Goes "bing" when there's stuff.  It also fries eggs at 30 paces, wether you want it to or not actually.  I've learned to stay away from hens: It's not pretty when they blow" -- </font></em></font><font size="1" color="#999999">The Tenth Doctor, "Blink"</font></p> </div>
 
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serak_the_preparer

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<i>As for them getting rid of posts, it is their business, thier servers etc, so I don't mind them doing some trimming now and again.</i><br /><br />Of course, and I agree. For my part, however, I had hoped for a more straightforward and honest approach taken toward the members. Need disk-space, trying to cut costs, want to delete a few years of posts? Go ahead - after all, it is your server being used here. But maybe you can also give the people making use of that service a heads-up?<br /><br />Anyway, though I no longer post new material to these boards (except sometimes on Free Space, politics being as ephemeral as ever), I will still post old items when I come across them.<br /><br />The following item is inspired by the Ireland is Atlantis? thread over on Free Space. It was posted over on the old Free Space three years ago by Yours Truly. Now here it is again, for anyone who may wonder about the myth of Atlantis.<br /><br />Atlantis 'obviously near Gibraltar' (BBC)<br /><br />20 September, 2001, 13:33 GMT 14:33 UK<br /><br /><i>Jacques Collina-Girard, from the University of the Mediterranean in Aix-en-Provence, says </i>[Atlantis]<i> could have been sited on an island close to the Strait of Gibraltar, and would have vanished below the waves about 11,000 years ago - just as Plato said it did....<br /><br />His assessment of the coral reef data shows the coastline off the southernmost tip of Spain and around Gibraltar 19,000 years ago to have been 130 metres (422 feet) below what it is today.<br /><br />This would have exposed an archipelago, with an island at the spot where Plato reported Atlantis to be in his work Timaeus.<br /><br />"There was an island in front of the 'Pillars of Hercules'," what we would now call the Strait of Gibral</i>
 
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