I've mused on this a couple of times recently, and there are two points to re-starting this project that I keep coming back to:
- The amount of data to process is very large and for the values I need for my plans so far require extracting one of the most indirect values (mass) for every data point. It finally occurred to me that I could us a proxy that we have for every object - luminosity. OK, so there is no reason to believe that luminosity relationships would make it possible to travel faster than light; but there is no reason to think that gravity would either, it just feels more like it should. Interestingly enough, luminosity is also the relationship Pournelle uses for his Alderson drive. I don't think I run much risk of ending up with the same results however. The important thing is that it will get me to having "jump maps" faster.
- As far as data reduction goes, I waffle back and forth on JAVA vs a scripting language such as Perl. I will stick with Java for now, but perhaps more on this later.