Tuesday, June 27, 2006

---Israeli troops enter Gaza, More on STS-121, More on H5N1, Hubble ACS Down, "Book Club" Too Stupid!, and Other Stories 

Israeli troops enter Gaza
FOXNews.com - Israeli Troops Knock Out Electricity in Gaza, Enter Strip - The Mideast
Confronted with one or more kidnappings of Israelis by Palestinians (including elements of Hamas) in Gaza, the Israeli armed forces have moved into the Gaza Strip in force. The Israelis destroyed bridges and knocked out electrical power to the area.
The Hamas government is now caught between its apparent involvement in the abductions and negotiations with Fatah in which it proposes to finally recognize Israel. Palestinians responded to the crisis by posing in the streets with their weapons.

[My Way News[AP] - Israeli Planes Buzz Home of Syria Leader
In further developments, Israel delivered a sort of personal invitation to Syria---presumably a suggestion that it rein in the Syrian-backed Hamas-led Palestinian government. Israeli warplanes on Wednesday "buzzed" the Summer home of Syrian president Bashar Assad while the leader was in residence.]

I’m not alone....
Foam would threaten shuttle rescue[FL Today]
...in thinking that dependence on a rescue mission by a second Shuttle with an unresolved criticality-one design flaw as a mitigation for launching the first Shuttle with unresolved criticality-one design flaw is not credible engineering management. Bryan O’Conner evidently included that consideration in his decision to vote against a July 1 launch for STS-121.

The controversy heats up
NASA engineering official reassigned - Space News - MSNBC.com
The Flame Trench space blog by Florida Today
Charles Camarda, head of the engineering directorate at the Johnson Space Center in Houston and member of the crew of Discovery in last year’s mission, has been abruptly “reassigned” to another directorate, removing him from the mission management team for the upcoming STS-121 flight of Discovery only a week before the planned launch.
The management at Johnson Space Center, steeped in decades of its management tradition---piled on the shoulders of such manned space exploration giants as Huntoon and Abbey---yes, in huge steaming piles of decades of its management tradition---apparently just couldn’t continue its pretense to the unprecedented level of candor advocated by the Griffin administration. Some of the controversy, in fact, is JSC’s well-practiced semantic ballet about the difference between “fired” and “reassigned”. Contrary to Camardo’s own email on the subject, reproduced in the post on FL Today.com, JSC denied that the “reassignment” has anything to do with STS-121, or his refusal to “abandon his position”.

My Way News[AP] - WHO Says Bird Flu Virus Mutated
The cluster of human H5N1 infection in Jakarta, Indonesia is apparently attributable to close, confined human contact, and not to any measurable change in the human-to-human virulence of the influenza strain, according to WHO. They were able to demonstrate, however, that the virus mutated in the course of the outbreak. The mutation apparently had no significant effect on transmission of the disease, however, and the cluster of human infections reached a dead end after killing eight people.

SPACE.com -- Hubble Telescope's Main Camera Stops Working
The Advanced Camera for Surveys, source of many of the most spectacular Hubble images, has safed itself. The problem seems to be more serious than other recent safe-mode incidents recently. Hubble management remains hopeful that the problem is in some power supply circuitry, and can be fixed readily.

Now this is news!
My Way News - CBS Pulls 'Tuesday Night Book Club'
This kind of news is why I started blogging about news! CBS has shut down its latest “reality” show after only two episodes because of abysmal ratings. That’s right, folks, they actually developed a reality show that was so stupid that nobody watched it!

Windows Venezia---Ventura---Vengeance---Ven-something-or-other....
What's in Store : WinFS Update
...or whatever the eagerly anticipated next MS OS is supposed to be called, is apparently going to be released with the same old file system. Contrary to the latest expectation that the new “file system” would be released separately, MS has decided that---it won’t.
Come on, guys, even Bill is leaving.

Something to do
Cassini-Huygens: Kids Space-Paper Model
JPL has a scintillating activity on their site---a serious, detailed paper model of the Cassini spacecraft. Amazingly, the real one seems to be working well also.

SPACE.com -- Huge Asteroid to Fly Past Earth July 3
An asteroid about a half-mile across will approach to just outside the Moon’s orbit radius on July 3.

Something else to do
How to destroy the Earth @ Things Of Interest
[found on Space.com] People are actually sitting around (no, evidently not playing soccer or extreme wrestling) and devising ways in which the Earth could be theoretically made not a planet, viz. utterly destroyed. Mostly harmless, if kind of uncomfortable.

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