peterman SMASH

They will treasure that sequence the rest of their lives...
--boozo Mon Sep 22 08:37:44 2003
I read a short story in IASFM or Analog, wherein some researchers travelled to another planet where hurricanes happen all year around, and to such severity that they added Categories 6 throuh 10. Using drone aircraft they flew increasingly large explosive packages in the eye of the hurricane, just inside the wall of the wind. When their largest conventional blast failed to do the trick, they went nuclear. Apparently a Earth hurricane in recent memory (think Floyd, judging by the timing of the story) had killed enough people that they would consider going nuclear. 

I also recall that at least one or maybe both of the ethnic Japanese researchers present on this planet committed suicide in protest of the use of nukes. I didn't really buy it, though; it didn't really ring right. I don't know if that's because I'm not Japanese, or because the author failed to bring that home. 

Also, it's worth noting that a lot of residual fallout is due to the heavier atoms that were cooked by the explosion. If the nuclear blast was clean and efficient (that is, self-vaporizing with no residiual Pu, etc. around), it seems like an airburst over the ocean wouldn't be too bad.

Also worth noting that we're not the only ones to do this-- suppose Japan develops nukes and decides to take care of its Typhoon problem? Or North Korea, maybe, whose leaders are just crazy enough...
--LAN3 Mon Sep 22 19:10:06 2003
The quote by margaret atwood references eskimos many names for snow. in fact this is somewhat exagerated. The book "The Language Instinct" by stephen pinker goes into this in some depth. Obviously the eskimos needed to talk about snow quite a lot, but in fact they don't have more words for snow, they just have a very detailed set of language for talking about the weather and snow. I'll see if I can dig a quote out to explain what I said a bit better.
--JustinHJ Wed Sep 24 08:31:06 2003

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