ratpag.wordpress.com died sometime after lunch on Friday – much like Jesus – was mourned, and now has risen again this Easter Sunday to continue bringing the world the gospel of transportation-related news and trivia as ratpag.com.
We know this is a lot for our readers to handle on this day of days so we ask that you sit down, spend time with loved ones, perhaps take the day off from work tomorrow – all in the name of digesting what has just gone down.
It is important to know that ratpag will never die – can never die – and our domain name now being legitimate-looking has only been done in effort to convert non-believers from their sinful, heathenish, non-rail and public transit-supporting ways. We thank our loyal followers for allowing ratpag to guide their every thought and belief regarding rail, transit, transportation, and other things.
And speaking of rising from the dead – get a look at what technology is vying to become a part of the U.S. high-speed transportation network! Japan Rail has announced that “it would not charge the U.S. to license its proprietary ‘maglev’ technology, which allows trains to hover 4 inches (10 centimeters) above tracks and travel at speeds of 310 mph (500 kph).”
This is welcome news as some of your fellow ratpaggers became familiar with maglev technology only through our undergraduate days at Old Dominion University, whose motto is Idea Fusion, and is located in a city called Norfolk, Virginia. The Old Dominion University (ODU) maglev experienced a series of setbacks, first missing its opening date in 2002 before repeatedly failing to work, various lawsuits, removal from the power grid, and subsequent use of its remaining, existing overhead track as a narrow umbrella.
Note the missing track – an important element to a properly-functioning rail system. So ratpag became a bit jaded regarding maglev technology from the experiences of our formative rail-and-transit years.
We are quite excited, though, about the idea of implementing a proven maglev technology and one that claims to be able to travel from “New York to D.C. in an hour flat.” That would be fantastic. We just hope the 1 trillion(!) yen ($9.75 billion) will be found to build such a thing.