Wanted to post something timely and witty about politics; certainly the number of NICS checks for previous two months shows a sharp uptick, a million-five plus, after taking nine years to slowly build from 800k a month to 1.2 million a month. Funny, that. One wonders what-ever could be the cause... Only not. I do hope the GOP is paying attention.
Alas, last night found me wrestling with recalcitrant starship control systems; beseems a significant number of recent glitches were the product of control funkiness rather than actual hits and recycles on the stardrives. While it restores my faith in the B3V (British Basic Ballistic Valves; they made their name in the UK version of the radio proximity fuse: tiny radars strapped to artillery shell and shot from guns) phantasmajectors and the big Tweed rigs they run in, I'd as soon not have problems with the remotes. Back in The Day, Space Force crews ran the drives by "extended controls" from a heavily-shielded room a few thousand feet away from the Drive Room, a bit closer than anyone should be but -- by the standards of the time -- very nearly safe. As long as you didn't open the door. That's right, a "Drive crew" of a half-dozen men lived out every jump in a space about the size of a double-wide house trailer, locked in by the energies of the stardrives. The room is still there; the controls are still there.
I am so not gonna do that. The Chief is a cautious sort; while the remote to Drive Control is a duplicated, divergent system (meaning two very different setups that will accomplish the same task), if either one is down, he's likely to hand-pick a collection of his least-favorite techhies and operators to spend a month or so locked away next to the 'Drives if the controls are not a hundred percent up to par before our next hop. I'd as soon avoid that; the boys that get stuck out there will tend to blame me. Unfair it might be (anyway, it seems so if you're me!) but them's the breaks. So, off I go! Wish me luck.
YANKEE RADIO TOOL KIT, #106
4 weeks ago