Akins’ Laws Of Spacecraft Design

I’ve known Dave for decades, but this is the first time I’ve seen these.

I particularly like 39(s):

39. Any exploration program which “just happens” to include a new launch vehicle is, de facto, a launch vehicle program.

39. (alternate formulation) The three keys to keeping a new human space program affordable and on schedule:
1) No new launch vehicles.
2) No new launch vehicles.
3) Whatever you do, don’t develop any new launch vehicles.

Shame that NASA and Congress can’t learn this.

America The Weird

Victor Davis Hanson on the appeal of the West:

America remains the exceptional Western nation, whose influence and stature transcend the size of its economy and population, and its vast land mass of rich natural resources. Its cocktail of property rights, unfettered oil and gas development, muscular national defense, gun rights, religiosity, free-market economics, limited government, philanthropy, and great private universities is, again, unlike anything in the West.

Likewise, its excesses that arise from the marriage of free-market affluence and constitutionally protected unfettered expression, in the eyes of the world, appear often as license and indulgence. Certainly, the First and Second Amendments, the National Football League, rap music, the U.S. Marine Corps, Silicon Valley, Wall Street, the Ivy League, or 24/7 cable news could not originate elsewhere.

The result is that America exists both as the world’s refuge and its beacon, the sole place where individuals can find a safe harbor. Only in America can the individual remain free and able to live his life under the assumption that the major decisions of his life are his own and not predicated on state approval. Only in the United States does the rags to riches story still exist, given that neither regulation, the deep state, nor an entrenched aristocracy can fully suppress entrepreneurs or aspiring capitalists.

A key goal of my Outer Space Treaty project is to extend this to the solar system. Speaking of which, Michael Listner has an analysis of the latest U.S. legislation along these lines.

Rejuvenation

This seems like a very promising approach. First dogs, then use the revenue to do clinical trials on humans. I’m holding up pretty well for my age, but I’d really like to set the clock back.

[Update a few minutes later, after reading]

I’d note that one of the “diseases of aging” listed is diabetes. I think it’s pretty clear at this point that this is mostly a problem of poor diet, based on decades of criminally terrible nutrition recommendations, and can largely be reversed by simply going keto. In fact, they’ve found that it can even be an effective treatment for Type 1 (and it was, prior to the development of insulin).

[Thursday-morning update]

New at Analog: Can we reverse aging?

[Via Gary Hudson]

[Bumped]

Blog Issue

Is anyone out there seeing the mobile site from their desktop?

[Update early evening]

Reading comments, this seems like a WordPress problem (or a problem with the mobile site add-on). Have no idea what I could do about it, except to disable it.

[Late-evening update]

OK, seems to be a problem that occurs “at random,” according to comments. I have not idea how to fix that…

[Thursday-morning update]

I just did a WordPress update a few days ago. It may be that I need to update some plug ins as well. I’ll give it a try sometime today.

Biting Commentary about Infinity…and Beyond!

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