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DVDs On The International Space Station 220

DrGoon writes: "The BBC has reported that "After docking, the shuttle crew of five astronauts delivered supplies and gifts to the Alpha crew, including a computer, cables for the laboratory, food, water, clothes and about 20 DVD movies. " in this story, which raises the interesting question: what DVD region is the International Space Station?" So, either they have a region-free DVD player - which is theoretically illegal according to Hollywood - or only the U.S. crew gets to watch movies.
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DVDs on the International Space Station

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  • by evil_one ( 142582 ) on Sunday February 11, 2001 @04:36AM (#440544) Homepage
    I am aware that CDs and DVDs have very little mass compared with the rest of the station, but what effect would these discs have on the station when they start and stop spinning? Could the usage of discs onboard the station require thrusters to compensate for them?
  • If you're really concerned about compensating for the rotation of a DVD, perhaps you should look at the forces exerted by an astronaut (a few orders of magnitude more massive) as they turn around.

  • that applies to any organization. whenever they need a new laptop installed for the ceo's assistant or whatever, "just go ahead and install the warez copy of win98", but when the software piracy police come in and find 328 identical copies of win98 and office installed, it's "the actions of a few rogue individuals". all too convenient...

  • Doesn't copyright law have to be recognised by whoever has juristiction? As no one owns space, it doesn't fall under any one country's laws, so which country's court are the MPAA going to go to?

    Pictures the MPAA lawyers: "Now, we bill $200/hour for normal preparatory work, $300/hour+expenses for client visits, $500/hour for court time, what do we charge for time in high orbit?"

  • The 'correct' region for the ISS is actually region 8 which is reserved for 'international venues' like cruiseliners and aircraft (And now also the ISS technically).

    Remember there are 8 regions in the system, but the world is divided in just 6. Region 8 is for aircraft and such. Region 7 is reserved for future expansion.
  • Probably because the laws sound so similar. ;)
  • I'm personally more interested in issues than "real" news - especially from slashdot. That's what I come here for, because no other site is gonna feature this story, but if there is a huge genome breakthrough you'll know it as soon as it happens. And I do wonder the region coding of the ISS DVDs . . . it is something of a mystery. I bet it's region 1.
  • Of course, this bias is the whole reason why people read /. in the first place. If you don't like the linux stories, then you can always A) remove them from your preferences, or B) go away.

    I'm so sick of this BS answer. I *HAVE* removed Linux stories from my preferences. Yet it doesn't matter, because the /. crew posts Linux stories in ALL categories.

    Like it or not, there are people that enjoy most slashdot stories, but do not like Linux. Slashdot used to be about news for nerds, not news for linux zealots. (And don't let me high user number fool you, I had a lower one a long time ago, and I know how Slashdot "used" to be.)
  • It would actually be very interesting if space were like the high seas: there is no accepted law of the high seas. The UN Convention on the Law of the Sea [] has been neither signed nor later ratified by Albania, Armenia, Ecuador, Eritrea, Israel, Latvia, Lithuania, Peru, Syria, Turkey, the United States, or Venezuela (or by several others, for that matter). The United Kingdom did not give its Accesion (still not a ratification) until 1997, and even then only with reservations [].

    So basically, if the laws of space were like the laws of the sea, everyone would agree that there is a law, but would argue about what that law is. The Open Skies Treaty [] has not entered into force yet, and in any case would only apply from Vancouver to Vladivostok, excluding the Pacific Ocean. The US may not recognize any claims of sovereignty beyond the planet, but whoever claims that sovereignty certainly will.

  • oh... you'd have to be french to use unlicensed words!
  • The only way it could be more so is if they had to decide between the Japanese and US versions, subtitled or not, of Princess Mononoke. []
  • They should definitely watch that up there because after all, in space, no one can hear the girlie screams they'll make when Aliens come out of the walls.
  • but wouldn't it be cheaper to just point one of the multitude of scientific antennas at a DirectTV satellite.

    Unless the ISS is in a geosynchronous orbit, you'd be outaluck when the station left the western hemisphere. I'm sure Europe and Asia have some pretty good satellite channels, just don't plan on watching 'The Real World/Road Rules Marathon' all the way through.

  • I don't think any laws apply in space, just like they don't on international waters. At least not for private vessels. Navy ships have to be bound by international law through their government.
  • Sorry, I wanted to say "eager for karma".

    Sorry again, I mispelled, it's "plagiarism". But the text box it's tiny, and English it's not my mother tongue.

    And again, at least I use my real name, my real email and my real URL to say that the previous message was already posted.

    And last but not least, I didn't care you, the plagiarist who call me dumbass, could moderate it down.

    STOP copying old posts just to get your karma up.

  • by Anonymous Coward
    4nd by a Sc0r3 4 p0st t00!
  • by Anonymous Coward _01_dvd_blasts_into_space.htm Sorry, i'll have to be a coward, but if you follow the URL above you'll find out about the DVD players on the ISS.
  • Something tells me that the RIAA has many members in NAMBLA...
  • but a space station is basicaly is not an air-plane right?
  • I tried to post an article on the Genome scientists mapping out the code for 98% of the diseases affecting humans earlier and it got bumped for this? Holy shit what has /. come to?

    I've been asking myself the same thing. I've submited an article from about how increadibly inaccurate most high school science textbooks in circulation are, and a really serious "Your Rights On-Line" about some poor sods that are facing legal action against them from Apogee/3dRealms over a non-profit open source project. Both rejected, but this goofy bit about ISS region encoding gets posted.

    Any chance of a spin-off site. Like for this goofy shit, and for stuff of interest and insight.

  • Offhand I'm not sure what orbit the ISS is in, but if it's GeoSynchronous it will always stay in the same place relative to the ground, so a region code respective of that location would make sense and seem legal. Although if it's not - another funny example of how much the MPAA/RIAA/DMCA sucks.
  • 1. Dr Strangelove - just because.
    2. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon - they can do all those cool flying stunts too
    3. Titan A.E.
    4. Mars Attacks!
    5. All of the Aliens movies - that's gotta be points on the smirk meter to be watching Alien in a space station
    6. 2001 - for much the same reason.
    7. Solaris - again, same reason.

    They should also keep a copy of Highlander II for emergencies. If they're attacked by aliens, they broadcast Highlander II at them and watch the aliens' brains turn to mush.

  • it's starting to sound like "Celebrity Deathmatch", only with lawsuits and alphabet soup org's.

  • by Odinson ( 4523 ) on Sunday February 11, 2001 @10:29PM (#440567) Homepage Journal
    Linux was supposed to be used by NASA on ISS laptops. []

    Did this happen? Wouldn't "We at NASA need to play our DVD's on ISS on Linux, because it was to expensive to ship the extra weight of seperate DVD players up into space. DeCSS was the only logical way" be an excelent argument in the 2600 appeal.

  • Wouldn't that be really locally, Planck's, Feynman's, ect... quantum physics laws, Newtons somewhat locally, and Einstein's on the global scale?

  • -- ??? -- "It drives like a truck." "Good. What is a truck?" Is this a quiz? It's from "The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai across the 8th Dimension" -brad
  • That's amusing. I'm surprised that the MPAA didn't insist that the ISS use a Region 8 (aircraft/ships) player. The MPAA really is insisting that aircraft and ships use Region 8 players. (You'd think that US flag aircraft would be allowed to use Region 1, but no...) NASA would then have to procure special Region 8 DVDs, which are available only for a limited range of films.
  • 20. Dumb & Dumber
    19. Forbidden Planet
    18. Lost in Space
    17. Greater Tuna
    16. 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
    15. Apollo 13
    14. Flight of the Phoenix
    13. Quest for Fire
    12. The Abyss
    11. Invasion of the Body Snatchers
    10. Night of the Living Dead
    9. The Day the Earth Stood Still
    8. This Island Earth
    7. The Man who Fell to Earth
    6. Young Frankenstein
    5. 2001, A Space Odyssy
    4. Twilight's Last Gleaming
    3. Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan
    2. Debbie Does Dallas
    1. Amazon Women on the Moon
  • ...has the player got the right sort of mains plug ?

    You know what it's like when travelling outside your country.

  • Perhaps they have a Linux laptop with a copy of DeCSS on it - I can just see a lawyer trying to book a seat on the Shuttle so he can go up and slap a writ on them :-) I know what my response would be, and it would involve the lawyer, an airlock, and no spacesuit...

    If we were a little more technologically advanced, maybe some hacker could pop up and graffiti the DeCSS source code on to the Earth-facing side of the space station, so that anyone with a telescope can read it!
  • by Anonymous Coward
    pppffft Japan, Canada, Russia etc have each contributed either money, or have built a part of the station and their own astronauts go up on the missions and they get their own experiments conducted too. the space shutttle crew is multi-national, its not say 7 americans and 1 russian
  • It is my impression that region-free players are in no way illegal.

    Manufacturers can't get the IP they need from the DVD Consortium without agreeing to abide by region rules set out by the consortium, so they can't sell a player that's region-free. That simple.

    Region mods are perfectly legal.

  • That's not too bad. At least the astronauts are probably watching movies instead of Michael Jackson videos teaching them how to "Moonwalk".

    I traded my ambition for a warmer place to sleep.
  • Also.. The government does not enforce region coding. It has no basis in Law. It is purely a construct of the DVD Consortium (or whatever they are called). Region free players are 100% perfectly legal.. region coding has nothing to do with copy protection. You can't use DMCA against it....

    Modified players can be sold perfectly legally. The only reason they aren't more common in North America is because most of what the vast majority of people want to watch is released in Region 1 first anyway.

    Players with hacked region coding are very common elsewhere, and mod kits for a great many players are easily obtained.

    Manufacturers can't make them because they are in contract with the DVD Consortium, who they need to be in business with to make DVD (decryption and all that). Part of their contract is region-coding.

  • Region coding is not copy protection. THis is not at all the same thing as the decryption mods.

    REgion hacks are perfectly legal pretty much everywhere.

    You just don't find anyone making the players, because the manufacturers are all under contract wiht the DVD Consortium.

  • Yeah, but nearly 10% of the responses were discussing whether playing a DVD would destabilise the space station due to the forces required.

    I found that sufficiently humerous to be glad the story was posted in the first place.

  • Not to be a cocky bastard but stigmatic is like my 50th account of which my first had about a 10-15k UID and I'm too lazy to retrace older accounts for the sake of trolling around a damn UID or the moderation bullshit so spare me the martyrism.

    Weird and different? This place has become first posting trollisms with the same redundant stories:

    Linux kernel released
    Microsoft does someshit
    Linux kernel released
    Microsoft does some other shit
    Linus takes a shit

    Oh wait I do appreciate the stuff posted, however according to the motto "News for nerds stuff that matters, it seems 2001 made need a replacement. How about News for nerds who only use Linux or Microsoft and want to see other assinine shit in the middle of it all?
    sitgmatic / deran9ed / sil / xp0rnstar ++ a shitload of others I choose not to trace.
  • According to Armageddon, where I learnt everything I know, patents don't apply in space, and nor does copyright.

    So they could reverse-engineer Windows and build in DeCSS if they liked. Or Irix, more probably.

    Crazy kids.

  • That Kicks Ass!

    Too Bad they dont have those here in Alaska!
  • by TDScott ( 260197 ) on Sunday February 11, 2001 @04:00AM (#440590) circumvent the DVD region restrictions by playing the DVDs on an orbiting satellite, and beaming down the picture?

    (I said theoretically possible, not cheap...)
  • According to a CNN broadcast, one of the movies brought was an early DVD release (presumably for Oscar handouts or the like) of "13 Days." Since this is about the Cold War, it'd be pretty interesting to know how the Russians and Americans interacted after the fact. They also should've brought up "Goldfinger" or another good Bond flick since those were banned in the U.S.S.R. at the time of release.
  • by hatless ( 8275 ) on Sunday February 11, 2001 @04:52AM (#440601)
    Don't worry about the Russians. They're probably stuck watching VHS tapes on a dusty old multisystem VCR. There aren't a whole lot of DVDs being made with Russian translations. In Russia, a typical solution is to watch an American or Western European DVD with the sound turned off, and simultaneously play an unofficial MP3 dubbed translation downloaded from the net.

    Unfortunately, they don't have fast Internet access in space, so they can't download the MP3s up there. And it seems unlikely an American space shuttle crew would think to burn some CDs of the Russian audio dubs to bring along.

    Maybe they have a cheap off-brand DVD player like an Apex, so the Russians can play pirated VideoCDs.. that's one video format for which one can get movies dubbed in Russian that are playable on a DVD player. Either way, they likely have to wait for a Russian crew to fly up to bring them any such pirated stuff. Hollywood would have a fit if illegal VideoCDs and unofficial dubbed soundtracks were being transported on an American spacecraft.
  • How do you moderate an entire story down to flamebait?
  • by bigdavex ( 155746 ) on Sunday February 11, 2001 @04:55AM (#440605)
    The appropriate one is region 8, the one used by the airlines. See the faq []:

    1: U.S., Canada, U.S. Territories
    2: Japan, Europe, South Africa, and Middle East (including Egypt)
    3: Southeast Asia and East Asia (including Hong Kong)
    4: Australia, New Zealand, Pacific Islands, Central America, Mexico, South America, and the Caribbean
    5: Eastern Europe (Former Soviet Union), Indian subcontinent, Africa, North Korea, and Mongolia
    6: China
    7: Reserved
    8: Special international venues (airplanes, cruise ships, etc.)

  • by Kithran ( 24643 ) on Sunday February 11, 2001 @04:56AM (#440606)
    According to their website, UK company Techtronics ( supplied 2 Sony FX1 players to NASA which had been modified to be multi-region. These players were also delivered by Atlantis.

  • Addendum to my own post above: There's always the handful of Russian and Soviet movies available on DVD, but those won't have any English dubbing or subtitles. And do you think the Americans are going to stand for the Russian cosmonauts watching something they can't?
  • You report the regions are:
    1: U.S., Canada, U.S. Territories
    2: Japan, Europe, South Africa, and Middle East (including Egypt)
    3: Southeast Asia and East Asia (including Hong Kong)
    4: Australia, New Zealand, Pacific Islands, Central America, Mexico, South America, and the Caribbean
    5: Eastern Europe (Former Soviet Union), Indian subcontinent, Africa, North Korea, and Mongolia
    6: China
    7: Reserved
    8: Special international venues (airplanes, cruise ships, etc.)
    I think it's interesting how the DVD regions seperate the world into 21st century regions. Remember the whole third-world label? I believe the proper breakdown was:

    First World: Modern, democratic countries (U.S., Canada, Western Europe)

    Second World: Modern, communist countries (Russia, China)

    Third World: Everything else (places where first and second world armies fight)

    Now, industry has a new category scheme, to break up the world:

    Region 1: Where the big movies are produced, where much of the profit and expenses come from.

    Region 2: Where big movies are consumed, some smaller movies produced (anime, stuff that gets considered in the Oscar's Foriegn Film category)

    Region 3: Where some "on location" movies are made, and people can afford the movies

    Region 4: Nice places for those who make movies to visit, but would you want to live there?

    Region 5: Places where the people are probably too poor to buy DVD players, or at least in bulk. Hollywood types may visit, for personal growth.

    Region 6: Places where you can be reasonably sure that piracy will eat up much of the profit.

    Region 7: Places where Hollywood probably won't have any control (Linux, Mars)

    Region 8: The region you are in when you are travelling between regions.

    This scheme seems very Hollywood-centric to me.

  • They can get DVDs to play in space but not on Earth. If you're using Linux that is. It's a sign of the times.
  • Oh boy, another, "I've been around since the old days, sonny." post.

    Back then, we couldn't just post on /. We had to walk 20 miles to the nearest internet kiosk first. Backwards, through 2 feet of snow. Uphill both ways.
  • very good point. The shuttle ought to be called the "earth shuttle".
  • no, circumventing region coding or any other encryption means is illegal under the DMCA. The question is, does this apply only when over US airspace? if so, then theyre probably in the right region after all, at least when its legal to rebroadcast. its a conundrum

  • by Anonymous Coward
    here []
    hmm Illegal under the DMCA but NASA does it? HMmm I hope the MPAA sues them just cuz it will make news and rile some people up =]
  • by cybercuzco ( 100904 ) on Sunday February 11, 2001 @05:03AM (#440631) Homepage Journal
    The short answer, yes, the long answer, No, not really. Every action has an equal and opposite reaction, according to newton. So as long as the player is firmly fastened to the station, when the motor starts the disk spinning, the station will react in the opposite direction. Angular momentum of the system is conserved. Since the station is huge(about 140 tons) and the disk is tiny, the amount of movement is imperceptible. Technically it does move, but you wouldnt be able to notice it.

  • I live in Brazil, an I was considering buying a DVD player. Then, I just went to an electronics shop in the local mall. I was expecting to find a lot of area 5 DVD players. What I found:
    There were about 10 different DVD players for sale, of different brands. 8 of them, came FROM THE FACTORY with no area code restriction (and that was not only brazilian brands, like gradiente, but also a lot of japonese brands, but all manufactured in Brazil). I guess it is that way everywhere outside US.
    After that, I came to the conclusion that soon, all the DVDs in the world market will be coded to area 1, since the US is the only place that can't play every DVD.
  • In the long run, yes, but the thrusters get fired often enough that it doesn't matter.

    The more interesting experiment would be to power up the DVD player while it's floating in the middle of a compartment, and watching it spin (probably slowly at first..)

    Doing the experiment with a portable CD or DVD player would probably work a lot better.
  • Isn't it obvious? Hollywood should be really excited now because they've identified a whole new region that consists of a growing handful of wealthy people.. Just imagine. A handfull of people willing to pay thousands of times above sticker for copies of Apollo 13. Man what a lucrative market. Wish I could have gotten in.

  • by Paul Crowley ( 837 ) on Sunday February 11, 2001 @06:00AM (#440658) Homepage Journal
    Imagine for a moment that the disk in the DVD weighed *far more* than the ISS. Imagine it's a huge disk, floating in the vacuum of space on perfect bearings, and the ISS is just a thin shell around it. Now motors attached to the thin shell introduce torsion on the bearings: surely the shell will spin, not the disk?

    The earlier answer was correct.
  • Just because you're in outer space does not put you beyond the reach of lawyers. Same for death.
  • Region 8 seems to be a waste. Does anything actually get produced that is region 8? It sounds to me that region 8 would only effectively play non-regioned disks...
  • Hmmm... so the astronauts have to put up with the awful airline cut versions of the films.
  • by luge ( 4808 ) <> on Sunday February 11, 2001 @06:15AM (#440666) Homepage
    Not to be an arrogant ass or anything, but "what has slashdot come to" from someone with a > 300K user ID is pretty damn funny, since you clearly have no idea what /. once was. So, a little history lesson: Once upon a time /. actually used to be about Malda having fun and posting whatever shit he thought was cool. This article falls pretty damn squarely into the "I think this is cool" category (which, if you ask me, is probably the best category on /.) If you don't think that this is interesting, take your "serious and important news" and go write for CNet. I mean- every other news source on Earth has something about the Human Genome Project this weekend... go read about it there. I'll stay here and continue to read things like this that I wouldn't have noticed anywhere else. In short: you go Rob, michael, etc. keep posting whatever the fuck you want to. Some of us still appreciate the weird and the different, and don't want to see this place become CNN.
  • evilone wrote:
    I am aware that CDs and DVDs have very little mass compared with the rest of the station, but what effect would these discs have on the station when they start and stop spinning? Could the usage of discs onboard the station require thrusters to compensate for them?

    Good novice question. Anything spinning acts as a kind of gyroscope, but you should realize that for the most part that gyroscope works to conserve angular momentum. Pick up a spinning box fan and turn it, you'll see what I mean. There are actually many small fans aboard the ISS, not to mention computer disc drives, so that gives you an idea of how serious an issue this is.

    For comparison, check out the Control Moment Gyroscopes [] that are installed on the ISS [] and used for stabilization and attitude control. They're huge and will dwarf any effects of something like a DVD player. They'll be activated after the Destiny lab goes online. In the meantime, the Zvezda and Zarya modules each have their own smaller gyroscopes.

    Incidentally, the gyroscopes are more important for attitude control than thrusters. Rather than constantly firing in different directions, where you're fighting your own efforts, the gyroscope stabilizes the station and makes it harder for it to get out of control where thrusters would be required.
  • ivi asks:
    So, who's laws apply in Space?


    Legally, under Article VIII of the 1967 UN Space Treaty [], the laws of the owner of the vehicle. Outer space itself is subject to international law and may not be claimed. On the Space Shuttle, US law applies. On Soyuz, Russian law. On the ISS, sovereignty still rests with the owner of a particular vehicle: Zarya and Zvezda are Russian, Node 1 and Destiny are American. In theory, Russia could remove its equipment and give us the hand-in-elbow gesture, or we could remove ours and give them the finger. In practice, most of this stuff is decided on the ground beforehand (as with the recent ESA announcement against permitting the Russians to bring Dennis Tito to ISS). In practice, there's a complicated usage formula based on assumptions about how much various groups (NASA, NASDA, ESA, CSA, RSA) contributed to the station.

    If one astronaut were to murder another [] there might be some trouble deciding who had criminal jurisdiction. This has been studied for some time [] but won't be completely sorted out until we have more experience.
  • And every 15 minutes they have to change DVDs/Players because they're in a new zone.
    That's some good thinking there...

  • by Kris_J ( 10111 ) on Sunday February 11, 2001 @02:54PM (#440676) Homepage Journal
    Future expansion of what?!? Does the MPAA expect Altantis to rise from the sea, or does it think DVDs will be around long enough to see civilians on the Moon?


  • by mpe ( 36238 ) on Sunday February 11, 2001 @10:09AM (#440678)
    Right so now these damn Americans are assuming they own space and can push their laws out there too?

    They can hassle someone in Norway, so this would hardly be a surprise...
  • >the plane is from USA, even if you are over China, legally, you are in Area 1.

    Yeah, except the ISS supposedly isn't from one specific country.

    You know, that's an interesting idea, in general. What if an ISS crew member commited some serious crime while in space, like killing someone? Where would he/she be tried and under whose laws? Wonder if they'd go to all the trouble of convening an international tribunal in The Hague for somthing like that, or they'd be extradited to the country of origin of the victim to stand trial?
  • >What is illegal is to play a US encoded DVD in a non-US DVD player.

    When you're in the US :)

  • In fact the UN has an Office for Outer Space Affairs and there is a bit of International Space Law.
    One of the treaties says that outer space is not subject to national appropation by claims of sovereignity, interesting.
    Check for more info.
  • by BMazurek ( 137285 ) on Sunday February 11, 2001 @04:03AM (#440693)
    which is theoretically illegal according to Hollywood

    Yes, and we all know that U.S. Government agencies never break any laws...

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 11, 2001 @04:04AM (#440694)
    US jurisdiction, of course. Like the rest of the world.

    At least that's how th US State Department sees things.

  • I've been around so long that my ID is actually binary. I'm user 23.

    No, I'm not being serious...


  • Who'd be suing who?

    MPAA vs NASA
    FBI vs CIA
    NSA vs KGB

    TOO many lawsuits from TOO many companies with TOO many acronyms.
  • by drsoran ( 979 ) on Sunday February 11, 2001 @10:24AM (#440702)
    Small cost of buying them? The US Government *never* buys anything for a "small cost". I would expect each DVD player to have been purchased for at least $12,000 dollars. While YOU may see them as identical to the $200 model you see at Circuit City, they are actually structurally reinforced and radiation proofed for special hazardous ops on the ISS.
  • So, who's laws apply in Space?

    Maybe we can let the UN control that chunk of the Universe...

  • While over North America, they use the regional encoded DVD with the appropriatately sanctioned player.

    Having all sanctioned players on the ISS as well as their DVDs, the ISS will pave the way as a shining example of how the MPAA wishes the whole world to watch.

  • A good link is here [], but I don't think that's what you are really thinking about. The Coriolis force relates more to moving objects (and their forces) on the surface of a rotating sphere IIRC.
  • If it weren't for pesky things such as mortality, you could sit on a frictionless chair in a vacuum, and by waving your arms such that you thrust them outward, fling them backward, then bring them back inward you could build up rotational velocity. It has nothing to do with air friction.

    No, actually this would violate conservation of angular momentum. The angular momentum you exchange between your hands and your body when they are extended is returned by the corresponding motion in the other direction as your hands loop around closer to your body. You would need to start flinging clothes in a direction not parallel to your own radial axis to alter your angular momentum and "build up rotational velocity".
  • by DavidBrown ( 177261 ) on Sunday February 11, 2001 @10:48AM (#440711) Journal
    Actually the solution is obvious. The Region 2 DVD player is mounted opposite the Region 1 player. Both players are run at the same time, and counteract each other's angular momentum.
  • Ha! Thanks, dude, I have found this link [] on, and it looks like they really got Multi-fucking-Region players up there! This made my day, folkz! For one moment I thought it'll be Region 8 or something, but since they needed something that will play Region 5, too, they got themselves tvo nice portable multi region players.

  • I think that "Armegeddon" is a perfect choice. "Apollo 13" and the "Space 1999" collection sounds good too...


  • by gilroy ( 155262 ) on Sunday February 11, 2001 @07:01AM (#440724) Homepage Journal
    Um, something has to exert a torque on the disc to get it moving. Maybe a physical rod, maybe an electromagnetic grapple, maybe telepathy... but it's not gonna move unless something exerts a torque on it. By Newton's III, that will create an oppositely-directed torque on the "something" that will cause it to rotate the other way.

    Now, you could prevent the ISS from rotating by not clamping the DVD player to the station hull. In that case, the DVD player will start to rotate -- perhaps noticeably, since the mass ratio is not so severe. Or you can clmap it to the hull and impart that angular momentum to the station (where it would probably be negligible).

    I don't know what you mean when you say

    The space station is a mechanically insulated (autonomous) system,
    but the fact of being isolated causes this linkage. If ISS+DVD starts off non-rotating, and if they form an isolated system, then their angular momentum must remain zero no matter what they do to each other. So if the disc spins (and picks up angular momentum), the station counter-spins (to cancel it out in the system total).

    That's just the way it works.

  • In relation to the axis of rotation, one side of the disk is further away than the other. When you spin up the disk, the angular momentum on the far side of the disk is greater than that of the near side.

    If you position the disk perpendicular to the centre of gravity, the station will take on a slight rotation... until the disk is stopped. You could however dampen this by creating a DVD player which spun an equal mass in the opposite direction.

    If it weren't for pesky things such as mortality, you could sit on a frictionless chair in a vacuum, and by waving your arms such that you thrust them outward, fling them backward, then bring them back inward you could build up rotational velocity. It has nothing to do with air friction.

    Actually moving around however is quite impossible, unless you start flinging clothes away from the direction you intend to move.

    I bet the whole station has gyroscopes to deal with this sort of thing. It would be too complex and unreliable to deal with it on a case-by-case basis.

  • Get your facts straight, newbie :-).


  • by The Wing Lover ( 106357 ) <> on Sunday February 11, 2001 @04:19AM (#440728) Homepage
    With all the billions of dollars that the International Space Station is costing, I would assume that they could afford one player for each region.
  • If you don't like Linux, you have no business reading Slashdot. Slashdot started out as a Linux site, and you can't expect Malda to change his stripes just because you don't like it.


  • I have no problem with the new users- many of them contribute a great deal here; certainly more so than I've had time to lately. And there are certainly just as many whiners among the "old school" folks who complain that /. is too much like CNN. If you could see my history past a month or so, you'd see I've flamed those people just as hard. One way or the other, this is Rob's site- the people who complain so much about "the way it used to be" (both 100K) are equally as wrong.
  • by BIGJIMSLATE ( 314762 ) on Sunday February 11, 2001 @04:27AM (#440736)
    I still want to know what movies they brought up there. Rocky IV perhaps? ;)
  • Since ISS uses 110V 60hz power, I expect they have a region one player. On a good orbit they will be over rgion one area for long enough to watch an entire movie.
  • by gallir ( 171727 ) on Sunday February 11, 2001 @07:09AM (#440744) Homepage
    Yeap, another plagiarist eager for. This document was copied from previous Slashdot articles: tm l tm l

  • The US Military Personal fall under the Uniform Code of Military Justice regardless of where they are.

    The UCMJ covers offenses against military law, not civilian. For example, failure to salute an automobile carrying a officer of General rank.

    For offenses against civilian law (persons, property, etc.), local civilian law is applied. Following completion of that sentence, additional military penalties may be applied. For example, pissing on the door of the Embassy of the (now former) Soviet Union in downtown Tokyo would have gotten you a short stretch in the Tokyo Municipal lock-up. When you got out, then you answered to military law. (If lucky, a reduction in rank under Article 15 [commander's non-judicial punishment] followed by being shipped out of the country immediately.)

    So we are still left with the question of what is the civilian legal zone for the space station.

  • I wonder if they brought up unrealistic, stupid space movies like Armageddon and Space Cowboys. If we hate movies like Hackers and The Net then I can't imagine how much they would hate their genre/life misrepresented.

    _ _ _
    I was working on a flat tax proposal and I accidentally proved there's no god.

  • by sulli ( 195030 ) on Sunday February 11, 2001 @11:06AM (#440748) Journal
    Really, only Slashdot could get over 200 comments in response to this totally silly and arcane question. It's space! It's video! It's a loophole in the DVD region-code rules! And it's yet another threat to Your Rights Online! I must say I'm impressed and amused.
  • Okay here we go:

    #1 - US airspace does not extend into where spaceships orbit to. So US law won't effect them.
    #2 - There is a region for international use. It's not toatally unbelivable that the MPAA would make DVDs that fall under that region (either 7 or 8 I belive)
    #3 - The DVD player going to the space station is comming from another country so again, it doesn't fall under US law.
    #4 - If it is a region 1 DVD player with Region 1 DVDs they'll just put it in the US section of the space station because that should/could be considered US teritory.

  • They're probably stuck watching VHS tapes on a dusty old multisystem VCR.

    How is this VCR going to collect dust in near-zero gravity?

  • And since you have a low ID, that makes you the moderator of all things cool? Give me a break.

    I'm sick and tired of these "old users" coming out of their graves to make a single post in a month and a half, decrying how Slashdot has gone to pot because of the new users.

    If you don't like the new users, why don't you go out and form OldDot with the rest of your brethren?

    Carmack is an elitist, pseudonerd bastard.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 11, 2001 @07:32AM (#440753)
    "theoretically illegal under US law"

    Right so now these damn Americans are assuming they own space and can push their laws out there too?

    Last I heard it was not owned by anyone and was without *any* laws.
  • by lildogie ( 54998 ) on Sunday February 11, 2001 @04:31AM (#440754)
    > So, who's laws apply in Space?

    Locally, Newton's.

    Globally, Einstein's.
  • It sounds to me that region 8 would only effectively play non-regioned disks...

    I have discs advertised as "all region" which are coded for regions 1-6, and I have discs which don't advertise a region which are coded for regions 1-8.

    I suspect they are using region 1, as it is the region with the most material, and the region most convienent to the shuttle which brings them up. They could have a laptop with a hacked DVD-ROM player (DVD Genie, etc.), but I doubt it.

  • They also should've brought up "Goldfinger" or another good Bond flick since those were banned in the U.S.S.R. at the time of release.

    Perhaps, but "Moonraker" seems like a truly appropriate film for the ISS.

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