dimarts, 29 de gener de 2013

Make Life multi-planetary

Elon Musk: But the main thing —the goal I still believe in for the long term— is to make life multi-planetary.
Chris Anderson: And Dragon, the spacecraft you berthed with the International Space Station (ISS) in May, has features that might eventually prepare it for a manned Mars mission.
Musk: Eventually, yes. The thrusters on Dragon are sized so they’ll be able to do launch escape—which means being able to move away from the rocket at a force of approximately 6 g’s. That same thrust level happens to be kind of a good number for supersonic retro-propulsion for landing on Mars.
Anderson: Could you have sent Dragon to Mars instead of the ISS?
Musk: Well, it would have gone very slowly—and when it arrived, it couldn’t have landed. It would have made a crater.
Anderson: The issue is stopping once you get there.
Musk: Version two of Dragon, which should be ready in three years, should be able to do it. But really, if humanity is to become multi-planetary, the fundamental breakthrough that needs to occur in rocketry is a rapidly and completely reusable rocket. In the absence of that, space transportation will remain two orders of magnitude more expensive than it should be.
Anderson: Really?
Musk: Imagine if you had to have a new plane for every flight. Very few people would fly.
Anderson: Isn’t the fuel a huge portion of the expense?
Musk: The cost of the propellant on Falcon 9 is only about 0.3 percent of the total price. So if the vehicle costs $60 million, the propellant is maybe a couple hundred thousand dollars. That’s with rocket propellant-grade jet fuel, which is three times the cost of normal jet fuel. That’s using helium as a pressurant, which is a very expensive pressurant. A next-generation rocket could use cheaper fuel and also be fully reusable.
Anderson: Are you making an announcement right now?
Musk: I hope we might unveil an architecture for that next year. I’d like to emphasize this is an aspiration for SpaceX—I’m not saying that we will do it. But I believe it can be done. And I believe that achieving it would be on a par with what the Wright brothers did. It’s the fundamental thing that’s necessary for humanity to become a space-faring civilization. America would never have been colonized if ships weren’t reusable.
Anderson: Wasn’t the space shuttle reusable?
Musk: A lot of people think it was reusable—but the main tank was thrown away every time. Even the parts that did come back were so difficult to refurbish that the shuttle cost four times more than an expendable rocket of equivalent payload capability.
Anderson: It’s like sending Columbus’ ships out and bringing the lifeboat back.
Musk: We’ve begun testing reusability with something called the Grasshopper Project, which is a Falcon 9 first stage with landing gear that can take off and land vertically.
Anderson: A huge rocket, landing on its feet? Holy shit.
Musk: Yeah, holy shit. The stages go to orbit, then the first stage turns around, restarts the engines, boosts back to the launch site, reorients, deploys landing gear, and lands vertically.
Anderson: It’s like something out of a movie or my old Tintin books. It’s the way space was supposed to be.
Musk: Exactly.

dimarts, 15 de gener de 2013

2012 Best Iceberg Books

1; El Iceberg de Oro llegó tarde, en diciembre, pero llegó para bien, en el año literario más flojo en lo que va de Iceberg: 'Frutos extraños', de Leila Guerriero.

Habían hecho un portón que daba a la calle, para poder entrar los cuerpos directamente desde ahí. En la puerta de la morgue había un cartel que decía: “No cague adentro”. Cuando empezamos a trabajar no lo hicimos público. Nos daba miedo. Teníamos un policía de seguridad de la misma comisaría que antes tenía la llave para meter cuerpos en esa fosa.
En un rato tocarán el timbre y Patricia bajará las escaleras con una urna pequeña. Allí, en esa urna, llevará los restos de María Teresa Cerviño que en mayo de 1976 apareció colgada de un puente con un cartel, una inscripción —Yo fui montonera—, la cabeza cubierta por una bolsa, los ojos y la boca tapados por cinta adhesiva. Todas las pistas indicaban que había terminado en la fosa común de Avellaneda. Su madre nombró al equipo como perito en la causa judicial que inició en 1988 buscando los restos de su hija. Durante todos estos años, Patricia supo que María Teresa Cerviño estaba ahí, era alguno de todos esos huesos.

2; Silver Iceberg for one of the best novelist alive: 'Disgrace', by J. M. Coetzee.

3; 'Pueblo', Paco Candel. Desarrollismo y premios literarios. Combinación arriesgada pero acertada.

4; 'Narracions', de Salvador Espriu. Perquè la prosa d'Espriu també és superior.

5; 'L'arxiu del corresponsal de guerra', de Plàcid Garcia-Planas. El catàleg d'una exposició que amb anècdotes i fetitxisme t'explica la condició humana millor que una carrera d'antropologia.

dissabte, 12 de gener de 2013

The 2012 best Iceberg movies

1; And the Golden Iceberg goes to... Roman Polanski and his 'Rosemary's baby'.

2; 'Cave of forgotten dreams', by Werner Herzog, is awarded with The Silver Iceberg.

3; The humor of 'American dad!' wins the bronze Iceberg.

4; 'Els passos dobles', d'Isaki Lacuesta.
5; 'When we were kings', a non fiction movie by Leon Gast.

dijous, 10 de gener de 2013

The 2012 Best Iceberg songs

1; And the Golden Iceberg goes to... 'Oblivion', by Grimes!

2; Silver Iceberg to 'The look', Metronomy (de nada, Movistar).
3; Bronze Iceberg to 'Your silent face', New Order (los viejos rockeros nunca mueren).

4; 'North American scum', LCD SoundSystem.
5; 'Neighborhood #1', Arcade Fire.