MBS question

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Re: MBS question

Postby jup » Fri Jan 06, 2017 4:42 am

Ah, yes. An ancient ghost from the past. Back in the days when memory wasn't a penny a terabyte. In order to save on those precious (yet then useless) bytes of 19, they reduced the year to just two digits and figured that the future would intelligently fix that shortcut, once it seemed more necessary.

They didn't count on executives whom thought it more cost effective to run with extremely outdated software and databases over modernizing, simply because something that continued to work and had long since been paid off was good enough. And I still clearly remember buying something at a Circuit City in a row that was full of demo computers, running all these nice screen savers. (Fish swimming about, I think.) The clerk's computer is B/W with a text interface. The cursor visibly runs across the screen, updating the data. It just seemed like a system that was older then the building.

There was another shortcut that hails from those days, too. In order to get around the two digit, 99 limitation, 100 would show up as A0. 110 would be B0. And so forth. Are there vital programs out there, still calculating the year as B7, right now??? Those letters do eventually run out. And I can see not all programs recognizing that shortcut.

One would also think that it would be impossible for CPU's to simply burn themselves out from code. Alas, I've heard of it. Like (of all things) with the Nintendo NES console. Supposedly, there is this first wave game named Metroid that was battery backed in Japan. When the imported, they swapped that battery for a password. Somehow, this password is suppose to be crazy powerful. Instead of just setting a couple bits of data, it would seem to have more depth in how the ROM works. And there is suppose to be at least one known code that will fry the cart. Talk about a built in Amish Virus. This rumor also states that when Nintendo ported the ROM to their handheld in it's original form, this code will literally brick the handheld. Alas, that one is suppose to be patched to avoid that, now.

Another rumor I heard of was that a long time ago, there was this computer called a Commodore Vic-20. (Or was it the C-16? No. I think this applied to the V-20.) If you used a native code called POKE and followed it up with the right number sequence, you could watch the little computer fry itself to a useless state. Heh...those were the early days. Nobody was expected to just be randomly trying PEEK's and POKE's without knowing what they were doing...because those two commands directly accessed RAM and ROM.(Totally unrelated. But, somebody managed to make a port of Doom run on a Vic-20.)

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Re: MBS question

Postby KFCreator » Fri Jan 06, 2017 3:09 pm

I think it's pretty safe to say the MBS was incredibly tough but of course it wasn't indestructible. We know that it's a chemical compound that is typically sprayed onto a surface and that once it bonds to that, only extreme heat, or a chemical that is formulated to break those molecular bonds apart, can truly get rid of it. A nuclear blast generates an insane amount of heat, not to mention explosive power, so yeah, I agree that if KITT was at or near the detonation point, he wouldn't survive. Saltwater actually didn't destroy the MBS on KARR, it only caused minor damage to some of his circuitry. The laser that reflected off KITT and hit KARR is what weakened his MBS enough that when the two cars collided, KARR exploded, not KITT. And we can assume that the laser packed an extreme amount of heat, which is what would have be-stabilized KARR's MBS. The acid pit KITT is dumped into in "Junkyard Dog" doesn't damage the MBS, at least not on the exterior shell, as KITT is pulled from the pit later and is largely intact. The acid probably seeped into nooks and crannies in between the shell and the interior and the rest of his components, which is why he was basically hollowed out. The interior likely is protected by the MBS but I think it's probably a weaker form of it, based on the fact that the acid ate through all of it but yet it can withstand high heat and (relatively) small explosions.
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Re: MBS question

Postby Assasinge » Fri Jan 06, 2017 3:25 pm

KFCreator wrote:Saltwater actually didn't destroy the MBS on KARR, it only caused minor damage to some of his circuitry.


Still no answer on the yellow scanner, though. Or not that I believe so.
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Re: MBS question

Postby WittgenTT5/Rstein » Fri Jan 06, 2017 3:30 pm

What I actually ment is radioactive materials, but I like the way we're talking about it.

To me, it would make sense MBS protects somewhat against depleted uranium munition.
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Re: MBS question

Postby snafu » Fri Jan 06, 2017 4:23 pm

The most I remember from my brother's Nintendo (I think I'm dating myself) was if the cartridges weren't cooperating, you could take them out and blow on the end, put them back in, and it would work.
Ah, if only the rest of my computing programs were that simple...

Re: Radiation.... the gold standard for radiation protection is lead, and has been that way since the Curie days. It's layers of lead and/or cement at reactors, or just pure distance. The idea of a single coating of substance blocking potential gamma radiation is intriguing to say the least.
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Re: MBS question

Postby KFCreator » Fri Jan 06, 2017 11:23 pm

The yellow scanner can be easily explained from probably a combo of the saltwater and the fact that red colors fade to yellow when exposed to sunlight for long periods of time. KARR himself was covered under a mound of sand but we know John didn't have to do much scooping to expose the rest of the scanner. If KARR had been sitting on that beach for a few years, with the scanner being exposed to the sun all that time (or even just some of the time), it would have yellowed. You could argue KITT's scanner maintains its red color so well because he has continual maintenance, cleanings, and maybe the scanner lens gets replaced every so often too.
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Re: MBS question

Postby jup » Sat Jan 07, 2017 4:05 am

KFCreator wrote:Saltwater actually didn't destroy the MBS on KARR, it only caused minor damage to some of his circuitry. The laser that reflected off KITT and hit KARR is what weakened his MBS enough that when the two cars collided, KARR exploded, not KITT. And we can assume that the laser packed an extreme amount of heat, which is what would have be-stabilized KARR's MBS.


I still want to bet that all that exposure to the sea salt would have been seeping in through any exposed point and eroding some of the super structure that the MBS (or any painted surface) hadn't directly been applied to. I'm recalling a real world post from somewhere else about an actual Trans-Am that was left in someone's back yard. Without maintenance and exposed to the elements after all these years, the level of rust damage would have left it immobile, by this point. So...KARR's resistance may have been high to avoid too much damage. But, I still believe that his warranty status was most certainly voided out by small pockets of unchecked damage. (So to speak.)

I also recall it being said that Kitt's laser would deplete Kitt's whole power reserve in only two or three uses. We're talking about a 1980's super computer that can run for hundreds of hours between recharges. (Why the engine has nothing to do with recharging is beyond me.) So,that laser must be amp hungry. And that certainly does mean a ton of heat is applied. (The books also denote that the batteries that KITT and KARR run off of are like micro nuclear power plants. Without regular maintenance...they grow unstable and explode! The show kind of leaves that little bit out. But, is meant to explain why KARR explodes while going over the cliff's edge. Yet the show does not clue us in on it all. And most certainly would have made KARR's return quite improbable. OR...throws a whole monkey wrench into this whole debate, as everything somehow nearly survives a tiny nuclear explosion going off inside the cab.) You know...I forget if they explained how KARR even stayed on-line after using said laser or not...extra power supply?

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Re: MBS question

Postby KFCreator » Sat Jan 07, 2017 5:46 pm

Jup, I was just re-reading the portion of the novelization of Knight of the Phoenix where Devon hits KITT with the hammer and in the book, they say that when it struck the surface of the car, the hammer lands with a thump, not a clang, and it recoils so much that it flies out of Devon's hands and lands with a clatter on the floor. Just then, I realized that KITT's MBS is described a lot like what we see and know about the alloy vibranium, which is what Captain America's shield is made out of. Not sure how coincidental the two substances are or if Glen Larson meant to base it off of vibranium, but the more I think about it, the more that I realize there are a lot of parallels.

There was a previous discussion on here a long time ago that seemed to back up the theory that when we saw KARR explode at the end of Trust Doesn't Rust, he survives because the explosion we see isn't the car itself exploding from the impact but KARR firing a rocket or two to make it look like he had exploded. The logic, from KARR's perspective, would have been that if everyone thought he had exploded, they wouldn't necessarily go looking for him afterwards. Although, FLAG just leaving him buried on a beach for several years, with all of the technology he possessed sure is convenient for when we pick things back up in KITT vs KARR. I can see how they tried to explain it away by having both Michael and KITT say they saw him explode but even so, wouldn't FLAG have sent in a salvage team afterwards to recover the remains so that it wouldn't potentially fall into the wrong hands? Gotta love 1980's TV plot holes.
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Re: MBS question

Postby jup » Sun Jan 08, 2017 4:16 am

Yes. They very well should have. The Foundation isn't just Michael, KITT, Devon and Bonnie. But a far larger operation with lots of people we next to never see or hear about. There was a massive level of security that just got lost in the paperwork shuffle, for sure.

As for the book vs. show details, I get the feeling that the show simplifies the overall intended meanings of what was originally written. Because, from that brief description, the MBS was something far more complex then just a super glue spray on. As I remember it, had the show been more accurate, we may not have had Bonnie at all.

Another notion of Glen's written word being simplified that I am aware of comes from Battlestar Galactica. In the show, the Cylons are dumbed down to just being alien robots that an extinct race created. But, in the book, this quick feed of information is highly inaccurate. The Humans 'would think' that their enemy is a creation of alien robots. When in fact, it's truly the aliens, themselves. A whole race that so hates the notion of gazing upon the face of another or even interacting, that they chose to conceal themselves up inside these polished suits of armor with bits of technology inside. By being in this protective casing, it puts them all at ease and creates a minimal level of professional interaction. Want to complicate things even further? The Cylons actually did create one and only one AI that was in a similar image to their gleaming suits of armor. Lucifer. Which goes to support how the show eventually revealed Cylons and gives the show some support for the interpretation error it so proudly announced as fact. Imagine if Lucifer was just a little bit like KARR. Only, instead of some outside force demanding that Lucifer be shut down, the Cylon version of FLAG simply said, "Go. Be free. Make your own destination." while being shackled down with society laws that could not be broken. If it hadn't been for the unbreakable laws, I suspect that Lucifer would have turned on that whole race. Instead, first chance he/she/...it gets, Lucifer sweeps in and saves the only Human that Imperious Leader personally orders to be killed. And so, Lucifer plays this underling role (by choice, no less) to the Human master, Baltar. Off they go in Lucifer's base ship, whom is also secretly (or semi...the Cylon's just don't seem to care.) producing robotic soldiers to deal with Baltar's whole hate against every colony deal. And from there is where this whole 'Robotic Cylons with a destiny and a religion with possible peaceful relationships with Humans' deal is sparked from. The show even brings up a whole robot Cylon city that Lucifer was free to bring into being without the true Cylon's ever knowing.

So, if the book makes it sound like the MBS is apart of the metal, that would make more sense why when Devon says "Oh, it's not your car." or something like that, he's talking about it being in a whole different class then just some metal frame with computers and a spray applied super glue on board. And, I suspect that Glen had nothing to do with Garthe at all. So, he probably never wrote about a spray on MBS formula. Instead, it was interpreted by a third party writer. Alas, what the shows says is more cannon then the source material, so it seems.

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Re: MBS question

Postby KITTfan » Sat Dec 30, 2017 9:44 am

MBS becoming true?
http://www.asrc.cuny.edu/2017/12/18/diamene-study/

Plastic car headlight lenses tend to become foggy and "yellow" because of UV light, maybe something similar was happening to KARR's scanner lens? Another old plastic phenomena is old computers which originally were light beige but turn yellow in time. Apparently it can be reversed with "retro bright" treatment (hydrogen peroxide & UV light). The plastics and keyboard in my Amiga 500 would need that treatment :P

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Re: MBS question

Postby jup » Tue Jan 02, 2018 2:35 am

That article really is amazing. One of the few KR things that I figured would forever remain science fiction. Imagine the possibilities. Super light weight cars that can resist denting. Super light weight space ships that could repel tiny debris. Fashionable bullet proof clothing for the unsafe world of today and tomorrow. So much more. (Never mind justifying the concept of adding on armor plates in Knight Rider 2010.)

As for KARR and the lens. I thought the leading theory was reaction to endless salt water, seeing as how he was probably buried under the sand for the whole time.


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