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Rocket Mail (wikipedia.org)
128 points by schaum on Sept 26, 2019 | hide | past | favorite | 40 comments

For a modest price (~$20), you can get a flight cover flown on the space shuttle.

This is is an envelope with a cancellations for "Launched" and "Returned to Earth" including Kennedy Space Center and Edwards.

Search for "STS-8 flight cover" on ebay.

Watch "Jour de fête", by Jacques Tati, 1949. There's a stunt film-in-the-film about this kind of super efficient mail delivery methods.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jour_de_f%C3%AAte https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0040497/

This is there just to remind us how boring our generation is. We used to actually tried to convince people to send mail by shooting it in rockets, send a man to the moon in a glorified can and fly around the world in zeppelins. Compared to that, a slightly bigger portable television with 3 cameras instead of 1 is just ... boring.

I entirely disagree. I spent yesterday utterly flabbergasted after watching this Spot video [0] and thinking of the implications of this becoming available to consumers soon.

[0] https://youtu.be/wlkCQXHEgjA

It's a bit of a tired adage, but that portable television sends mail faster than any rocket, can simulate sending many men to many moons (and could replace all the computing apparatuses used to send the first men to the moon), and... well, you've got me beat on zeppelins as there's nothing we have now to trump that :) I guess my point is that maybe there is still a healthy demand for perspective in the boring future.

Come on, didn't a guy just shoot his car into space?

All this really needs is a better guidance system. I'm surprised there isn't a startup for using artillery launched drones to deliver packages yet. Drop a package anywhere within a 20 mile radius of the warehouse within 2 minutes.

Nice idea but I'd like to see the face of the insurance underwriter who has a proposal to fire artillery into built-up areas come across their desk, lol. Then again, Amazon is in Washington state and we do have some precedent for seconding artillery over to civilian agencies here (WSDOT used to use surplus 105mm recoilless rifles to clear dangerous snow packs from the I-90 et al. passes; it seems now they've been replaced by surplus M-60 tanks due to ammunition shortages for the older weapon), so who knows?

electric ducted fan RC models easily reach 100+ miles/hour. 10 minutes instead of 2, yet without all the really impossible to overcome in modern conditions hassle of artillery. While full VTOL on launch may be a bit much, tilting the ducts on return landing without payload you can even possibly have a smooth low speed safe landing/recovery.

Zipline are already using small drones to deliver medicines in Africa:


To go 20 miles you'd have to launch faster than the speed of sound


It's hard to think of a use case.....

These days with the transitive nature of people, islands are going to have boats going to them frequently enough proportionally to the people on them such they can deliver goods cheaper.

Information is wireless, the original reason for rocket mail I assume.

Even reducing it to something sensible like an art project for a Burning man style event, firing a burrito (Search burrito cannons) 1 km away could still knock someone off their bike and hurt them plus it'd be inaccurate due to wind, rising heat, so a pointless project.

You could of course fire vertically, expand out, then glide the delivery in accurately or parachute it down with guidance but you'd lose the delivery vehicles electronics = $.

Maybe pick up, clip in clip out electronics to reuse at the end of the night across town, have a deposit for the buyer and reward for the collector.

You're assuming it doesn't glide at all.

The reverse of shipping a rocket by mail e.g. "The KGB Shipped a Sidewinder Missile by Mail to Moscow. It cost $79.25." [1] IIRC this was featured in the series The Americans [2] as well.

[1] https://nationalinterest.org/blog/the-buzz/fact-the-kgb-ship...

[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Americans

> Twenty-two minutes after launch, the missile struck its target.

But what condition was the mail in? Don't leave us hanging, wikipedia!

This was the very first wikipedia page I saw. I hit the random button on the main page.

The second page you saw then.

Explains Blue Origin

Next up: Drone mail

I can't be the only one that thought this was going to be RocketMail, acquired by Yahoo.

I wonder if that's where they got the name in the first place. I can't even remember my old rocketmail address anymore.

I remember mine, but Yahoo deleted my account after a short period of inactivity... I wonder if anybody still have theirs. That is one reason why I never had a Yahoo email address.

I do, and still use it, though it's mostly been overrun with spam.

prove it and send me a quick one: i12im8+msyvo9klxnkc@sharklasers.com

I remember mine but Yahoo aggressively deleted lots of those older accounts.

It’s funny this actually came up in a comment now because I saw an old ad in a magazine that used a Rocketmail address just yesterday and it brought back a flood of nostalgia.

I still technically have my rocketmail account. Try logging in with yourusername.rm

My first email address was at rocketmail.com. That and my AOL instant messenger account were how I kept in touch with friends.

This is sad and embarrassing, but whatever, someone should get a laugh from it:

My very first email was also rocketmail, set up by a friend on a school computer in highschool.

I had no clue what address to pick, so he chose one for me: studhorse69@rocketmail

I wish I was joking.

That’s a pretty good one[1] to put on resumes. Some would be amused others might auto pass on it. It’d be interesting to see how HR staff react if at all.

I’d like to think les clay pool would have taken studbullhecat@rocketmail...

[1]in an amusing way, not for reals.

Hard pass. If you aren’t smart enough to open a free email account at any other provider just for the sake of your resume then I don’t want to work with you on anything important. I don’t care what your personal email address actually is, but I have no interest in working in an office full of bros.

That said, it’s a pretty funny joke (for high school).

I loved RocketMail. Enough said.

I still own a rocketmail account.

I have a rocketmail account that I use daily.

I still have that old rocketmail account

>The collection of philatelic material ("stamps") used for (and depicting) rocket mail is part of a specialist branch of aerophilately known as astrophilately.

Wikipedia sub-categorizations are consistently amazing. Not sure if it's a positive "amazing" or not, but it does amaze.

I doubt these terms were introduced by Wikipedia -- they're just reflecting the diversity of things that exist out there.

Wikiphilia - no real cure.

Come on, Elon! Give us a mail delivery service where little rockets land vertically, spit out our mail, and then take off again to go back where they came from.

He's already planning a passenger service that does this. Not much of a step further to include mail in the cargo.

Forget that I want to be sent in the mail delivery service

Being this HN, I clicked and I was not disappointed.

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