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I make a living exploiting the things you can do with an Earth that's not flat. The fact of the matter though is that it's not round either; it's lumpy and oblong and has these dense parts and floppy parts and the whole mess is just about as not-flat as things can be. Did you know that gravity is not constant? Not only does gravity vary geographically:
but it also varies over time, both on a 12-hr cycle tracking the tides and on a 5.9 year cycle tracking the variation of Earth's rotational rate. It's very inconvenient.
Would it be uncouth of me to recommend Knoppix with dd or dd-rescue for drive imaging? These are my go-tos.
Related, here's a hard drive failure bathtub curve:
Final Fantasy Tactics A2
OT (sorta): I think it's pretty legit that you're basically like "well fuck it, way to expensive to buy it I'll just have someone make it for me. Here take these instructions and create this for me please. Thanks."
With the amount of cash I'm saving by doing it myself, I'm willing to take the chance that the problem is not outside my engineering expertise. I'm having a hard time believing that this is a more challenging problem than mounting any other sensitive piece of lab equipment. Throwing lots of low-Q bulk mass at the problem is a fairly conservative approach and was the same one Technics used for the original factory plinth.
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