A large helicopter crashed last month near Norfolk, Va., and not only wasn’t the National Transportation Safety Board mobilized; it probably even had advance warning. The planned wreck was part of a continuing series of rotorcraft crash tests sponsored by NASA in partnership with the FAA, the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Army, dating back to 2009.
When my wife and I recently dropped off our son for his freshman year at Bard College, we had the pleasure of listening to a talk by the school’s extraordinary longtime president, Leon Botstein. He noted that universities have been around since the 11th century and have endured through everything from the development of movable type to the invention of electric lights and the moon landing. They’ll survive the Internet, too, he said.
FAA enforcement cases tend to focus on the front-line employees, usually pilots or mechanics, who allegedly violate federal aviation regulations. Occasionally other certified airmen, such as aircraft dispatchers, parachute riggers or air traffic controllers at contract towers, face enforcement action.
A year ago, Laminar Research, the maker of the popular X-Plane flight simulator software, was sued by a company called Uniloc, which accused Laminar Research of infringing a Uniloc patent entitled “System and method for preventing unauthorized access to electronic data.” Uniloc is seeking a jury trial and wants agreement that its patent has been infringed, payment for damages and costs, post-judgment royalties and pre- and post-judgment interest.
A little over a decade ago, my wife and I had at least some small chance of becoming rich beyond belief. We were among the first investors in a technology startup that had the potential to be as revolutionary and widely adopted as the iPhone or iPad, and with even greater revenue. Unfortunately, the company’s digital-wallet concept was ahead of its time and the founders, despite diligent efforts, lacked the muscle to make it a reality.
Whistleblowers have been in the news a lot lately: Edward Snowden, the NSA leaker who some call a whistleblower; Avantair’s whistleblower-initiated shutdown; and the latest TWA 800 conspiracy theorists (who also style themselves as whistleblowers, although 13 years after the NTSB’s probable-cause report was issued seems more like a whistle-whisperer than -blower)–the
I was reminded of the wonderfulness of the Paris Air Show on my last day at Le Bourget Airport on June 20. My job at most shows that we cover is tied up with producing AIN’s daily issues, and for two or three days before the show until the night before our last issue is printed I’m heads-down in the constant struggle to stay ahead of the relentless deadlines involved in producing a daily print magazine.
I’ve always been one to deliberate carefully before spending money, but I might not have labeled myself an obsessive shopper until the day, several years ago, when I went looking for a new kitchen faucet.
For a time in the 1970s and 1980s, Wisconsin Sen. William Proxmire gave out his Golden Fleece Awards. But they had nothing to do with Jason and Argonauts.
I remember well that night 17 years ago when TWA Flight 800 exploded and crashed off the coast of Long Island, killing all aboard. I was settling down with some friends at my brother’s Manhattan apartment to watch a game between the Red Sox and their arch-rival Yankees when the game broadcast was interrupted by news that an airliner had crashed soon after takeoff from JFK International.