Rocket Car Will Hit 1000mph in 40 Seconds, Empty Bowels in About 5 [Rocket Car]

via Gizmodo by John Herrman on 10/23/08

Britain’s Minister of Science Lord Drayson is announcing today the commencement of the Bloodhound rocket car project, which will propel current land speed record-holder and RAF Pilot Andy Green to speed of over 1000mph. This is another step in the sporadically intense fight for the fastest car in the world, but the Minister has a half-hilarious, half-reasonable excuse for it: it’ll get British students interested in taking advanced science classes. Nobody really cares about stuff like that because, well, 1000mph.

The first part of the run will be propelled by a jet engine, originally designed for the Eurofighter. After the Bloodhound reached 300mph, propulsion duties will be taken over by an experimental “bespoke” hybrid rocket, during which time the driver will be subjected to 2.5Gs of acceleration force until he hits 1050 mph. The whole process will take about 40 seconds, amazingly.

Naturally, possible blackouts, horrific crashes and mechanical malfunctions are all in the cards here. Dont’ worry though — according to the Times, he is preparing in the most ludicrous way possible: “He will practice… in a stunt aircraft, flying upside-down over the British countryside.” No date for the run has been set, but we should get a few more details after the Minister Drayson’s formal announcement today.

[Times Online]

Rumor: Xbox 360’s defect rate was as high as 68%

 
 

via Xbox 360 Fanboy by Dustin Burg on 9/8/08

According to VentureBeat’s own Dean Takahashi and his numerous insider sources, 68% of all the early manufactured Xbox 360 consoles were defective and Microsoft knew it. Takahashi does mention that it’s common industry knowledge that “early yields on electronic goods are almost always lousy”, but in the case of the 360, the problem was never fixed and production of the defective consoles went as planned. Because, you know, Microsoft had launch plans to stick to.
Again, this is all rumor seeing that Microsoft would never admit to such knowledge or such high defective rate numbers, but let’s say they knew that 68% of all their consoles had a potential for failure. If so, shame on them, but we think they learned their lesson.

[Via Eurogamer]

 
 

Do You Fear Monthly Internet Service Limits?

via geeksugar — Geek is chic. by geeksugar on 8/29/08

Comcast dropped the bomb the other day that it’ll be placing caps on Internet service — 250 GB per month. When a customer goes over, they’ll be contacted by Comcast and asked to curb their usage, and there’s also a possibility that the company will charge $15 for every 10 GB over the limit.

Considering Comcast is the country’s second-biggest Internet provider, this should affect tons of people (yours truly included), and in general, I’m wary of new limits on services. On the other hand, 250 GB is a whole lot of uploadin’ and downloadin’; SFGate reports that the average user only utilizes about two or three GB per month. Of course, setting a limit now could set a precedent and usher in eventual lowered limits.

What do you think — are you bummed that Comcast is capping usage, or does it not make a difference to you?

Source

When GPS Leads You Astray. . .

via geeksugar — Geek is chic. by geeksugar on 4/20/08

Is it just me, or are the amounts of GPS horror stories increasing? Who can forget the man who drove his truck into a cherry tree, or the woman whose GPS led her directly into a river?! Crazy but all true!

Well here’s another one for you (it looks serious, but thankfully there weren’t any major injuries). According to the Seattle PI, a driver of a bus carrying a girls softball team hit this 9-foot bridge when a GPS navigation system routed him the wrong way. And yes, the driver just so happened to miss the ginormous yellow clearance sign on the side of the bridge (the bus measured 11-foot, 8-inches high).

GPS units have certainly got me lost a few times, but – knock on wood – I haven’t had any accidents because of them! Have you?

Source

Ultima Tower is two crazy miles high, wants to be green

via DVICE by Kevin Hall on 4/3/08

Ultima-Tower-2-miles-high.jpg

How tall is too tall? I guess we’ll know once one of these crazy building concepts ends up getting built — if it subsequently falls down, that is.

The Ultima Tower is a conceptualization by designer Eugene Tsui and it’s built around alleviating city congestion in this increasingly congested world. It’s debatably attractive shape is inspired by termite mounds and, instead of trying to brave the winds as your ordinary block-like skyscraper, it slopes gracefully to a point from a 7,000-foot-in-diameter base. The Ultima Tower is designed to provide good ol’ self contained arcology living, takes advantage of renewable wind energy, has its own water supply at its base and throughout the tower, and uses reflecting mirrors to boost the amount of natural light throughout.

I wonder what construction firms think when they look at concepts like this? At least Tsui made it aerodynamic — it’d be a pain if it created some drag against the Earth’s orbit.

Ultima Tower, via Inhabitat

A TV so big it needs to go on the outside of your house

damm

via DVICE by Adam Frucci on 2/7/08

outdoor-home-theater_48.jpg

At this point, having a 60-inch TV won’t win you any neighborhood mid-life-crisis contests, as everybody is getting giant TVs these days. Now, you need to take it to the next level if you really want to prove to everyone how desperate you are to distract yourself from the looming shadow of death’s cold grip.

What could be better than installing a gigantic drive-in theatre screen on the side of your house? You can’t get a TV much bigger, and it shows that you’re in touch with your childhood in the era of drive-ins while staying rooted firmly in the present. Wait, you were alive when drive-ins were still popular? Man, you are old! No wonder you’re freaking out.

The Cool Hunter, via BornRich

This $6 million home theatre setup is better than yours

via DVICE by Adam Frucci on 2/8/08

Kipnis_2.jpg

How much would you be willing to spend on a home theatre? $1,000? $5,000? Maybe
you’re loaded and don’t mind dropping upwards of $50,000? Hey, good for you.
Guess what? No matter what your answer, your setup really sucks compared to
Jeremy Kipnis’ $6 million home theatre setup.

What do you get for that kind of money? Well, you get a screen with four
times the resolution of 1080p HDTV, a ridiculous 8.8 channel surround sound
setup with 16 speakers, and bragging rights for life. It’s got a “laboratory
grade” 18-foot-by-10-foot screen and a $100,000 projector. Overkill? Sure, but
if you’re gunning for the sweetest setup on Earth, that’s the only way to
roll.

Audio Video
Interiors
, via Gizmodo