atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,

#6584: It needs to be done.

DOT is auditing the certification of the 737MAX.

Citing the usual "not enough money" woe, the FAA seeks to offload as much of its responsibility as it can onto manufacturers.

The more I learn about this, the more convinced I am that everyone dropped the ball. The FAA did not properly fulfill its oversight role. Boeing pushed out a 737 variant with insufficient attention to safety. But, hey! At least the executives in charge of the project got nice big bonuses and promotions, right? For coming up with a great way to refresh a mature design?

Here's the problem:
The failure analysis, including the "what bad thing(s) happen if this goes wrong" were predicated on a design that had the authority to move the trim by 0.6 degrees. By that maximum movement the system could not crash the plane or kill anyone on board (it might produce minor injuries or discomfort to passengers however.)

The limits were later updated to 2.5 degrees but the documents were not updated and thus the analysis was not re-run. That's four times the original limit, and would have prompted a much more serious rating in the event of a malfunction.

Worse, it was not documented that the system would reset whenever the pilot entered a trim command, and thus there was no effective limit at all on the amount of trim change the system could input. That would have likely led to a "will lose the aircraft" (e.g. "CATASTROPHIC", or "must be prevented") rating for a failure.
That's Karl Denninger from yesterday. So, the system was designed to have no limit to the "nose-down" authority MCAS could use; and so that explains why the jackscrew for the elevator trim on the Ethiopia flight was found in full-down position.

"Trim" is something used to make flying an airplane less fatiguing. Let's say your airplane is just a tad nose-heavy one day, for whatever reason--not out of spec, but just off, such that in order for you to fly level you must hold the stick back a bit. That's tiring if you're going a long way; so you reach over and grab the elevator trim and turn it down a bit, and presto! You don't have to maintain pressure on the stick to keep your attitude any longer.

Aircraft can also have rudder and even aileron trim, for the same reason. The trim tabs are small movable surfaces set into the control surfaces (such as elevators, rudder, and ailerons) which let you fine-tune the control authority of each surface. But if the trim tabs are run to their full extents, it makes the plane harder to fly. The pilot should be the one making those settings, and he should always be able to tell how much trim is set. It sounds as if that's not the case here.

* * *

Jews unhappy that the Democrat party is showing its true colors. Guys, it was never about anything other than getting your votes. Sorry to break it to you.

"Now we feel like we have to check our passports." You should go to Israel. Seriously; that's the only place in the world where Jews will really be safe.

* * *

One of these vignettes is why I'm linking this.
Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven. Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth: That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly. [Matthew 6:1-4]
That's something I always worry about: that when I am helping someone I'm doing it to make myself feel good about myself. I actually feel guilty for feeling good about it. I don't know what that means, other than showing how much of a big vagina I am.

* * *

To borrow a phrase from my late father, what in the hell kind of shit do you call that?
The Bulwark's article actually says socialism is NBD, really:
But upon closer inspection the right's bashing of socialism rings a little hollow--and not just because of Gorka's bombast. Yes, AOC's proposals are misguided but they are unlikely steps toward a planned economy, show trials, or the gulag system.
"Misguided"? And then come the claims that just because she's advocating socialism, it doesn't mean she'll bring about the bad parts of socialism.
You can't just implement "a little" socialism, and any attempt to do so will most assuredly bring the "bad" parts with it. It cannot be otherwise.

* * *

"NeverTrump" in perspective. Satirical, even.

* * *

Couple of neat things from Imgur:

Noisy duckling.

I love bioluminescence.

* * *

The CD is 40. I first encountered CD audio in about 1984, and was instantly an advocate of it. Back then if you compared the sound of a CD to that of a record, it was magical, how clear and undistorted the sound was.

Clean vinyl played on midrange to high-end gear sounds better, it's true...but in the "cost for performance" area CDs cannot be beat. To get to the place where vinyl records sound better you need to spend a hell of a lot of money on your turntable and amp, and you need to make sure that record is clean.

And most people can't hear the difference.

The CD is fading, though. MP3 files are very compact and sound nearly as good (and again most people can't tell the difference between a raw CD PCM file and a well-encoded MP3) and can be downloaded in a few seconds.

That's how it is: formats are superseded all the time. After all, who listens to 78 RPM records any longer? Not many.

* * *

The worst part of all this? It's only friggin' Tuesday. FFS.

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