D.O.A. on December 21, 2009, 09:08:14 pm
Okay, I've been reading for awhile and hanging out as a ghost(guest) here.  I had to pop in for this one.  As Mr. Sandfort points out, the computer was for the staking beacon of course.  But ya know, it could ALSO be for lasers.  And you know why?  Because not every is that uptight.  :) 
Outdated terms get reapplied to new things all the time, or become outdated.  I mean, take trenchcoats for example.   All sorts of people still wear trenchcoats.  And call them such.  But I doubt very much that any of them are wearing them in muddy trenches, standing back to back with a limey, ready to take the next run across no man's land.  Files and Folders on a computer too, I mean, they're not the classic example of a file and folder, but, it was the closest thing we could compare them to in our experience, now the name is permanent, and no one really ever thinks about why that is.  I'm sure if you think about it, you'll come up with other examples.

So in short, even though it's NOT referring to the lasers, if it had been, it'd be easily forgiven.  But it's not.  :D

(oh, and there's the whole thing about all the objects moving around being projectiles too... so yanno.  That works as well.)

dough560 on December 31, 2009, 04:03:58 am
The army and navy has been experimenting with electromagnetic rail guns.  My previous post was based on a recent (last six months) story in Popular Science or Popular Mechanics.  An earlier story in one of these publications was about an army test gun, which fired one inch square plastic (lexan) projectiles at  25,000 feet per second.  The effect at one mile was a two foot deep and five foot wide crater in a plate of battleship steel.  So yes, radio beacons or claiming stakes could be effective kinetic weapons, depending on impact velocity.