02 February 2007

At the CLI for too long

 

I know I’ve been sitting in front of a CLI screen for too long (or in fact at a vim screen) when I notice some things in my word-processor:

  • Lines aren’t deleted when I hit dd; and

  • There are extra is where I’ve inserted new text; and

  • After I type ZZ, the text is still showing.

Then I know my world is turning edge-on when I read that Professor Claus Rolfs of Ruhr University is planning on changing the decay rates in radioactive waste to make it faster & easier to dispose of. That sounds like there’s a little dial on the waste packages marked “years” & you can crank it down from “1600” to “100” that easily, reducing the half-life.

Naturally, it’s a little more complicated than that, you have to cool the material inside a metal container, but nevertheless it’s going to provoke questions like “& just how long was this ‘ancient’ object sitting in this tin in the ice? If you can tell me reliably, of course?”

Interestingly enough, Prof Rolfs discovered that this effect enhanced the rate at which fusion took place in models of stellar fusion, & reasoned that it would also enhance fission... & it works.

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