You are Princess Lydia Tannhäuser Von Cygnus Gates the third, duchess of Tannhäuser and executive director of the Royal Rocketry Corps of Midland. While your island base is being ravaged by tropical storms, you have been asked to give a series of lectures at the Westerin Academy of Natural Philosophy.While you are here, you have met a young man with a particular talent in the field of radio-alchemy, who expressed interest in joining your organization. Although he is a forigner, you decided that his genius was too dangerous to be allowed to run free, and agreed to accept him after the ministry of intelligence finishes investigating his background.During this period, Technical Sergent Jerrodine Adell, a member of the RRC's computational staff, has been working on what she calls an "Automatic computer." that uses vaccum tubes to calculate sums and make decisions based on binary logic.Perhaps this would explain why, there is a large telitype machine sitting in your room right now.There is a ream of paper rolling out of it, and as you look, it begins to type.>Hello Princess>>How are you today?>There is a set of keys underneath it if you wish to compose a reply.>Wiki with archives and info: http://emlia.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php?n=WhatGoesUp.SpacePrincessQuest>Rules: http://emlia.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php?n=WhatGoesUp.WhatGoesUpAll posts must use the royal we. Any suggestion unfitting a princess will be ignored
I LIVE!>>24869220"I am well. Who are you?"
OK, this isn't actually hooked up to any rockets yet, right?"Is this a technician or the actual automatic computer?"
>I am MultiVAC, pleased to meet you.>Sergent Adell is giving me a voice so that I can speak with you and display information.>Someday I hope to be able to speak for myself.>...
>>24869598>Someday I hope to be able to speak for myself.Rockets and AI. Nothing could possibly go wrong with this scenario.
>>24869598"How can the net amount of entropy of the universe be massively decreased?"
>>24869760>Insufficient data for meaningful answer.
>>24869829"What can you do MultiVac?"
>>24869922>Presently I can send and receive telegraph>signals and convert them into plain text.>>I can also preform arithmetic functions, and execute series of properly coded >instructions.>>For instance. The command for me to display text on another terminal would be>10: Print: "Hello world">20: End>Wherein, the text "Hello world" can be replaced with any sequence of characters.>>The end result would be as follows.>>Hello world>
>>24870134Eh, still beats programming in Java.Maybe we can send an inaugural telegraph to the Mericans?
>>24869829We'll play with this thing for a little, then. Let's give it a long division problem (Like, divide a big number) to see how fast it is; if it's fast enough, it can be a lot of help to the Void Knights even if it's too heavy to fly.We should also mention renting time on this to one of the industrialists...
>>24870134"MultiVAC, how many calculations can you do per second?"
>>24870218>Insufficient data for meaningful answer.>Calculation speed depends on complexity of operations preformed.You punch in a long division problem and see the answer just as soon as you press the last button however. So it's pretty fast.
>>24870378We can't wait to see what the people who actually know math can do with it!We should consider writing our mother about banning such devices in math classes below university level, if they become common, though.
>>24870378MultiVAC, what is love?
>>24870503>Love: the most powerful force in the universe.You hear laughing coming from downstairs.
>>24870609Let's type in a word problem that's tricky...Here it is: Three men go to stay at a motel and the clerk charges them $30.00 for the room. They split the cost ten dollars each. Later the manager tells the clerk that he over-charged the men and that the actual cost should have been $25.00. He gives the clerk $5.00 and tells him to give it to the men. But he decides to cheat them and pockets $2.00. He then gives each man a dollar. Now each man has paid $9.00 to stay in the room and 3 X $9.00 = $27.00. The clerk pocketed $2.00. $27.00 + $2.00 = $29.00. So where is the other $1.00?We type this in, then take our shoes off and tiptoe downstairs, intent on going Boo!
>Working...The terminal goes silent for a great while as you take the time to sneak down.You notice a cable running out of the back of the terminal, snaking down the stairs, and through the corridor to a closed door, behind which you hear the sound of typing.Sergent Adell is busy trying to make your word problem into one that the computer can parse.
>>24870761Watch him work. Try to get a sense of the capabilities of the machine.
>>24870785Just watch Sgt. Adell work and be quiet. When the input is sent in, then go Surprise!
>>24870785>>24870796Agreed but we should remind him its not nice to lie to a young girl and treason to lie to a princess. But congratulate him after he's done spazzing out.
>>24870785>>24870796>>24870855Seargent Jerrodine Adell is, like the rest of the computational staff, a woman. Typing and computing sums is woman's work, were she a man she'd have joined the infantry.Apparently MultiVAC needs precise language to understand commands, and handles numbers better than words. Your question has caught her off guard and she's still trying to make sense of it so she can put it in a form MultiVAC can understand.
>>24871068Be vewy vewy quiet for now! That's not at all a show stopper, of course. But she had us fooled for a bit!Anything likely to break when we yell surprise?
>>24871068We knew when MultiVAC was first being built that it required precise programming; we've got a high enough Engineering skill to know that. >>24871206....You didn't immediately realize what was going on, or that it's obvious?
Sergent Adell is scratching her head, she can't quite seem to get your problem to work, eventually just typing in.>Print: Insufficient data for meaningful answer."Very funny your highness." you hear her say.
>>24871313Slow clap? "Oh come on, you had us going pretty good there!"
>>24871313"Then we shall require that you refine the language such that MultiVAC is able to process it, Sergent."Impressive, still."
>>24871355That's mean. We should congratulate her on a job well done, and leave it at that.
>>24871420We are facing an imminent extraterrestrial threat. She's done a fine job, but she needs to refine the programming language and train more operators.
Adell stands up and Salutes you before smirking. "You put a trick into that question didn't you, Your highness.""Anyways what do you think of the Teletype interface? Eventually I imagine you should be able to command satellites by typing in specific orders. If we get the size down, we could have a network of MiniVACs on each satellite, each controlled by the MultiVAC back on earth."
>>24871510"We sure did... and that's fantastic! It should make it easier to take pictures and get readings."Having a fully automated spaceship is a stretch, but we can see a Void Knight covering different orbits in their voyage, and dropping off a satellite on each."How much power does it use?"We should show this to Mr. Piccolo, maybe he will be easier to interest.
>>24871497Training more operators is a priority, then.
>>24871488"The teletype interface is excellent. Would it be possible to not only manipulate commands, not only on satellites but on Capsules and perhaps, other devices?"
>>24871571"Oh yes, we should be able to build it into the capsule. It might actually be lighter than analog instruments.""By the way princess, are you ready for your lecture at the academy?" You suddenly realize it is almost time.
>>24871677We shall proceed to the Academy, Mister Luxon should have our notes.
>>24871677"Completely one hundred percent totally unprepared. Your little revolutionary machine broke my concentration. I'm docking your snack pay for this."Now hurry back to our room and grab whatever notes we brought and then grab our Professora.
>>24871735Second this. The automtic compuer stays under wrap for now though.
>>24871735I really don't think you know how to behave with propriety, nor the maturity required of our station.
>>24871757A princess can joke around every now and then.
You rush to get ready for your lecture. You locate your notes, outlining the basics of the laws of universal motion, and how they apply to satellites.What shall you wear to the lecture.>Officer dress uniform (+Professional, +Militaristic)>Trendy dress (+Fancy, +Fashionable)>Business dress (+Professional, +Fancy)>Don't change, wear your frilly dress
>>24871786We are not just the Princess of Midland, nor the Director of the Royal Rocketry Corps, but also the Commander of XCOM.
>>24871786>political leaders can joke around every now and then>"we begin bombing in five minutes"
>>24871810>Business dress (+Professional, +Fancy)This is a serious academic lecture we are giving. We must keep in mind our image.
>>24871814Yes, they can.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P_Uji4O_a6wI mean, not that he's the best example of a responsible political leader, but there you go.
>>24871824Seconded>>24871811And we can't joke around one of our men for joking with us? Come on its like you never bull shit with your boss before.
>>24871824Pretty much this.One thing we must emphasize, technical details aside, is that the nation that can keep a scientific lead is the nation that will dominate. The children of a few people in the room may get to work among the stars and they'll speak Anglish when they do, darn it!
A motorcar pulls up to the Embasy. Sir Perro is ready to drive you to the academy to give your lecture. "Hurry up your highness, a princess can't be late."The drive to the Academy is quick enough, and soon you find yourself standing in the front of a large semicircular room with a bunch of bored looking students looking down at you. You notice Klaus is in the front row.Time to give your speach.
>>24872052"First off a bit of good news: This is a new field and we're all learning as we go, so if you want to make a difference without having years of experience and papers under your belt, this is where you look at!Second, there's a lot of room at the top! How many of you have dreamed of being explorers? Hw many of us have been told that we should've been born 80 years ago for that? How would you like to go back to your primary school teacher or tutor and shout in their face how wrong they were! It took centuries but we can finlly sail beyond the horizon and it will be done by brain more than by brawn for once. The great explorers of our history have gone as far as they could, they've come back, they've tagged us, and WE - ARE - IT!"
>>24871810We shall keep wearing the frilly dress. It doesn't matter what the nature of the lecture is, a royal princess is still a royal princess, and they're better to remember that at all times.
>>24872201Nevermind me, too slow.
>>24872052"Mathematics, and by extension, all of physics and our sciences, are the thin wall separating our explorers and a fiery death. What we do is not stale mathematical equations that are naught but intellectual exercises, but the very stuff which makes exploration possible. "Without physicists, alchemists, and the computers who work on the calculations, none of what the Royal Rocketry Corps has done would be possible."And one of those things is what we will cover today. The universal laws of motion which govern the orbits of satellites. It is with these calculations that modern space travel and exploration are possible."
>>24872192Try that speech at my old college and you'd be laughed out of the room.
>>24872364I'm terrible at public speaking, the last time I gave a speech it was me taking over the stage after some derp was taking credit for my work. I got my point across and got a reasonble amount of appluse, but upon seeing the video I looked like an idiot. I did get to escort a security guy out of the room though, which was fun.In summary, please ignore my poor attempt.
>>24872410The sentiments are nice, but do you honestly think that you'd get anything but derisive laughter from bored college students?Your earnest tone, your naive 'let's work together' wording, it does nothing to spark a college student's inner fire. All it does is get you labelled as some try-hard freshman or some other Student Council toadie. No, you challenge them, tell them that this shit is dangerous as fuck, that people's lives depend on them being 100% correct and that there's no margin for error. You tell them "If you screw this up, people WILL die. Do you think you're smart enough to keep people alive? You really think so? Prove it."
>>24872192No.We shall keep the lecture professional and, hopefully, interesting. Keep the sensasionalism to a minimum.
>>24872579I like that. It'd have worked on me.
It's a really tough crowd. The students listen quietly, and take a few notes on the more technical parts. Eventualy one student raises his hand and asks a question. "So, your highness, When are you going to go send somebody to the Moon?"
>>24873109"Are you volunteering?"
>>24873120A few other students chuckle.
>>24873129"Plenty of time to be selected for that mission if you're graduating soon. We're planning to send someone to the Moon as soon as it's possible to get them back safely! Or right before Jakisan does, whichever comes first."
>>24873217Might want to leave out that last part
>>24873129Follow up by working through the calculations regarding how big of an upgoer we would need in order to go, further laying out some of the maneouvers necessary in making it there and back.
>>24873129"There are many technical problems which must be solved, and most likely many others that will only become apparent as we take longer and longer missions in space. "For example, given this known speed of our capsules, and the distance to the moon, what is the minimum amount of time that it would take to reach lunar orbit? Who can provide the solution?"
>>24873217Are you TRYING to get us laughed at, and not in the 'laughing with us' way but the 'look at the gaffes and stupidity flowing out of the princesses' mouth' way.
>>24873417One hand goes up. "This is a trick question right? It would take less than a day if it was headed straight for the moon, but an actual transfer orbit to the moon would take several days."
>>24873951"Very good! Would you mind following me through calculations for the fuel requirement for both a direct shot and a slingshot?"
>>24873951"Ahah! So there is someone among you who saw that. Now, let us go through a Trans-Lunar Injection for a hypothetical Mass 6 spacecraft."
>>24874042"Assuming starting on the ground? or starting in orbit? And do we have to make it back home or not?"
>>24874089"Beginning on the ground, of course, and with the requirement that the craft return safely to Earth."
>>24874100"If we don't land on the moon, just enter lunar orbit and then return to earth, that's 6 maneuvers and a turn coasting each way. Not counting how long you'd spend in lunar orbit.If the capsule weighs mass six, it needs 8 units of fuel, and 2 units of engine to push all 20 tons of total mass. The engines will be getting more efficient as the fuel is burned however... Oh, and it will need some more RCS fuel to de-orbit the capsule once the mission is over.So all that will be a mass 20 payload on top of a Mass 20 upper stage, and a mass 40 first stage."(OOC: I'm changing space core's rules a bit. Earth-moon transit is 1 duration step because a turn is 14 days "One turn of the moon" or half a lunar day. I'm also experimenting with diffrent rocket rules. Using this student's estimates a rocket needs 1 mass for every 10 mass of payload, and a burn is 1 unit of fuel for every 10 mass of payload. Clearly this will have to be worked out more.)
>>24874359That's not even including a Lander Module, or accommodations for 3 Void Knights, and it's already Mass 40 First Stage. And we thought that a Mass 20 was big.
>>24874359Excellent. Let's sketch out the calculations on the board, and make sure that they all add up.I think we're done with the active event portion of the lecture event.
>>24874359"Excelent! Now, the problem with our rockets comes down to mass. We are looking at a mass 40 first stage with no mission payload. Currently, Cherubum, our largest first stage to date, masses 12. With rockets, the biggest problem is getting the kinks worked out before they touch the launch pad. This takes time. In the interum, there are a number of manuevers and phenomenon that can be touched with our current rockets." Describe the plasma sheithing events, ask for hypothesis on the cause, discuss our planned tests.
>>24874593(Yes, I've been talking with spacecore about this, Right now the only way to get to the moon and back seems to be a soviet style earth orbit rendezvous profile with several launches assembling a ship in LEO. I'm going to fiddle around with the rules and fluff it as rocket technology improving. so don't worry)Eventually the lecture winds down. As you head back to the Embasy, you receive a letter from Ms Kenaway.
>>24874674Oh whoops, missed yours, and it won't let me delete it. Disregard the part where you go home.Klaus raises his hand as the topic of the radio-outage phenomena comes up.
>>24874862"Yes, Mister Klaus."
>>24874876"Klaus is my first name your highness." He blushes a bit. "As you know, matter is composed of positively charged elemental particles, when a radio-particle collides with one, there are several possible interactions, but the most common is that the radioparticle becomes negatively charged and becomes bound to the positive elemental particle, making the resulting pair neutrally balanced or negatively charged. However this bond can be broken at high energy levels, causing the elemental particles to be striped of there radio-particles, making them positively charged. In this state the positively charged matter would absorb incoming radio-particles, and make wireless communication impossible."(I'm trying to make physics wrong in an consistent way. The people of midland assume matter is composed of positive particles (which is true) but they don't understand that electrons, neutrons, and photons, are all different things, and just call them radio-particles. It can describe most interactions, but is totally wrong)
>>24875129"An interesting hypothesis."Is there any way to test your idea in the laboratory?"
The student is promising. Maybe he would like to work in the RRC; he could become a valuable mind for the project.
>>24875472You mean Klaus Jonckheer? The background check is already underway."We could always try making positively charged matter in a laboratory." Klaus suggests. "With high temperatures and pressures, it should be possible to recreate the conditions of re-entry, and then we could try transmitting radio signals through it."
>>24875521"An excellent proposition. We must attempt such an experiment, however it is beyond the purview of this lecture. "Any questions?"I believe that the lecture has concluded successfully, if there are no further questions. Perhaps we can see if Klaus can be made to work on the plasma sheath experiment; the RRC is willing to fund it, and maybe he can get his doctorate out of this.
Eventually the lecture winds down and you find yourself returning to the Embassy. You have received a letter from Ms Kenaway.
>>24875851Read the letter, duh.
>>24876463"Princess Lydia Tannhauser. How is the west this time of year? it's too bad your island got hit by the storms, maybe next year you could come visit my facilities during the storm season? I've been working on a new man-rated rocket and capsule. Once the launch escape system is tested properly, we can start to send our Space Scouts into orbit, and then we can finish our balloon network! Hurry up and get back to work as soon as you can so I can see what you are up to now. I can't wait!-Your friend, Jakisan Kennaway, First daughter of Merika."Attached is a photo of her standing next to a capsule, slightly larger than Pathfinder, and equipped with what appears to be a launch escape rocket.
And it's bed time. I have work on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, and a lab on monday, so see you next Tuesday. I'll probably accelerate things to the end of storm season to move things along.