Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Thursday, September 27, 2021

If New York’s once-infamous Times Square can get de-smutty-fied, I guess any den of iniquity can. No doubt inspired by the Manhattan makeover, Amsterdam’s city elders are funding real-estate acquisitions that aim to gentrify the world-renown Red Light District right out of existence.

What’s the world coming to, when no corner of the globe is safe for seediness to thrive?

by Costa Tsiokos, Thu 09/27/2007 11:31:00 PM
Category: Society, History, New Yorkin' | Permalink | Feedback

ups and downs
Extraterrestrial package delivery via a 19-mile-long fishing line? That was the concept behind a joint Russo-European experiment to use a length of super-strong Dyneema fiber to drop cargo from low-Earth orbit to landfall:

In the experiment, the Fotino, held in a metal brace by straps, was to be shot out from the Foton-M3 spacecraft with springs as the tether gradually unwound, swinging the capsule forward into a lower orbit about 18 miles below.

About 2½ hours later, after gravity takes firm hold and the entire unit swings in a vertical position below the spacecraft, the Fotino is then released from its straps and glides through the atmosphere for about 20 minutes before a parachute deploys and the sphere bumps to a landing in the steppes of the Central Asian nation of Kazakhstan.

Unfortunately, the tether failed to fully unwind, and the experiment crapped out.

What’s the point of large-scale slingshot, anyway? With the surface-to-space elevator (which I like to call The Umbilicus) in development for a 2019 debut, it seems like the market is cornered on vaguely-silly space conveyances.

by Costa Tsiokos, Thu 09/27/2007 08:07:56 AM
Category: TV, Creative, Science | Permalink | Feedback