TV writers

Apr. 17th, 2019 03:00 am
kengr: (Default)
Catching up on TV programs. An episode of NCIs had a whole of stupid errors.

It had them on a nuclear sub. Somebody had sent false orders to the sub. This was supposedly done by somebody adding a device to the connections to the subs antennas. That made it ignore actual Navy signals and only accept ones from somebody else.

Ok, theoretically possible. The problem is that they had the bad guy sending orders to the sub while it was submerged.

They got the fact that that requires ELF (Extremely Low Frequency) signals. There are several problems with that. The transmitters require antennas hundreds of miles long. The Navy's transmitter uses a good chunk of Michigan.

Second problem. The low frequency means that the transmission rate is measured in characters per *minute*. So the messages sent are *short* code groups. Which absolutely blows the plot.

A *critical* bit of the plot involves a last minute message to the sub and they make a big deal about "proper formatting" of the message, Alas, in the real world, the message would be two to 3 code groups (one to Id which sub it was for and the other one or two groups would be something to look up in the code book on the sub)

So there wouldn't be any "formatting". And it wouldn't be "last minute". It'd take several minutes to send maybe as much as 10 minutes.

Also, the bad guy wouldn't have been able to send the *detailed* orders the sub got while it was submerged. One of the code groups is *known* to be "surface to receive detailed orders".

and of course, the bad guy couldn't have sent ELF signals anyway.
kengr: (Default)
A few weeks back I was looking to indulge a little. so I went browsing the ice cream isle at the store. Much to may annoyance they still don't have spumoni. There's another flavor they seem to have discontinued, but I can't remember what it was.

But I did find a couple new flavors. I got the Signature Select Mango sherbert. It's great. I got a silly idea and tried it on the marked down apple pie I'd bought to share with [personal profile] fayanora. It's actual a *good* combination.

Today I went back and got the other new flavor, Blood Orange Cream. It's a good vanilla ice cream with swirls of blood orange "goop" running thru it.

Also very good. Alas, being Tillamook brand it's not cheap. I'm gonna enjoy it while it lasts.
kengr: (Default)
Thinking about the vaccination arguments and other things brought to mind Kant's "Categorical Imperative".

One way to state it amounts to "what would happen if *everyone* took the action you want to take?"

Apply that to vaccination, and the answer is starkly obvious.

In other cases it's not so obvious, but only because people tend to limit their thinking.

A lot of arguments about religion only make sense from the viewpoint of the dominant religion. If you change the premise from we don't want *their* religion thrown in our face to "we don't want *any* religion thrown in our face, then applying the Imperative will make the followers of the majority religion in the area *really* uncomfortable.If not outraged.

Similar things apply to a lot of racial, gender and sexuality issues.

On another topic, I was watching an episode of NCIS (I'm way behind on watching them) and a late teens (about to graduate high school) character had something they'd worked all summer for destroyed by a disapproving parent.

This is one of number of parent/child relationship/behavior things that *really* annoys me. Especially since in this case it wasn't anything that it was *wrong* to have, just something for an activity the parent didn't want the kid involved in (dancing).

There is something *very* wrong with a world where parents can destroy something like that and *not* be liable for restitution.

The whole idea that children don't have property rights is morally and ethically questionable.

Likewise all the arguments about parents restricting things their kids are allowed to learn, much less some medical decisions.

Your right to control your child ends at the point where it could harm them. Failing to get them treatment for illness is an obvious case. Vaccinations are less obvious.

Keeping them ignorant or worse teaching them things counter to reality is even less obvious but frankly it can be just as damaging. Not just things like alternate "theories" to evolution, but also things like no sex ed, or abstinence-only sex-ed.

If I was dictator, you could teach your kids creationism, etc, but they'd still have to pass science classes that *weren't* forced to cater to your religious views.

And something like Dutch (or is it Danish) sex ed classes that start in kindergarten by teaching about healthy relationship would be required too.
kengr: (Default)
1961-04-12 Yuri Gagarin is first human in space.
kengr: (Default)
I'm trying to figure out a good way to describe some characters.

They trigger a reaction sort of like the "uncanny valley" effect, except instead of weird/creepy it's more scray/terrifying.

Sort of like something about them makes your lizard brain want to scurry away and hide, except it's afraid to move because it might attract their attention. :-)

There's nothing you can point to that causes the reaction. It's not any one detail or details. It's an "overall" thing.

They look "normal" or maybe better than normal. But the first reaction is as described above.

Basically, I'm trying for "idealized humans" except for the "scares the hell out of you" initial reaction.

It's something you can get used to, but that first "jolt" ...

And yes, they frequently start out by saying something like "fear not". :-)
kengr: (Default)

  • How old are you? 64

  • Surgeries? 2 (tonsils and adenoids)

  • Tattoos? 0

  • Ever hit a deer ? Nope

  • Ridden in an ambulance? No.

  • Sung karaoke? No.

  • Ice skated? Yes

  • Ridden a motorcycle? Yes

  • Stayed in hospital? Yes.
  • Skipped school? No

  • Last text? From my pharmacy

  • Watched someone die? No.

  • Pepsi or coke? Dr Pepper :-)

  • Favorite pie? rhubarb

  • Favorite pizza? combo

  • Favorite season? summer (if it isn't too hot)

  • Broken any bones? left arm, twice

  • Gotten a ticket? No

  • Favorite Color? Purple

  • Sunset or Sunrise? Sunrise (only if I'm up that late :-)

  • Books or movies? Books

kengr: (Default)
Wednesday morning, I was awaken abruptly by my right calf trying to kill me.

Ok, not really, but that's what the cramp felt like. Ouch.

Fortunately my current bed frame has a convenient 2x4 to jam my foot up against to fight cramps. So I got it somewhat under control and it faded.

Mind you, even now there's a slight twinge of soreness. But it's not even annoying.

Thursday while getting out of bed I figured out *why* my cramps tend to come as I'm waking up. I sleep on my side, so as I roll over to my back and on to the other side, I point my toes (so they are out of the way for the roll).

That pointing involves contracting the calf muscle, which triggers the cramp (note that jamming your foot up against something and pushing it to keep the muscle stretched is what works best to shorten and "minimize" the cramp, so this makes sense)

Ok, good to know but not likely to be a lot of help as it's something your body does pretty much automatically. And being half asleep means you're unlike to remember to be careful in time.

Tonight my leg attacked me again. Apparent my old Croc flip-flops have worn down enough that they no longer give as much support to my heel. This means that my heel is now *lower* than my toes. Which stretches the Achilles tendon. And after a few hours the tendon reacts by informing you that it doesn't *like* being stretched that much that often.

Oh well, they need replacing anyway and they have lasted for many years.
kengr: (Default)
[personal profile] fayanora commented the other day about the folks who are protesting a bill in the Oregon Legislature that would remove all non-medical exemptions for vaccination.

Some of them *may* be anti-vaxxers. But their stated stance is that the state shouldn't be interering with the right of parents to make medical decisions for their children.

Sounds nice. But that ship sailed *long* ago. It's well established that the state can file *criminal* charges against the parents if they fail to get proper treatment for their child's medical conditions or illness and the child takes serious damage or dies as a result.

So parental authority regarding this (and a number of other things) has limits. Fairly sharp ones.

Children have certain rights *regardless* of their parents wishes on the matter. Not nearly enough in my not-so-humble opinion, but still.

And failing to vaccinate your child doesn't merely endanger them. It also endangers every other person they come in contact with who hasn't been vaccinated.

And in the case of folks with legit medical exemptions, *they* are rather likely to get serious complications or even *die* if they get a disease from your unvaccinated child.

That's because most of the legit reasons for not getting vaccinated amount to "their immune system is badly compromised" Which means that the *actual* disease will do terrible things to them.

The other legit reasons are things like allergies to something the vaccine is made with (which is why there are alternative vaccines for some diseases)

*your* decisions about *your* child have consequences for other people. *Serious* consequences.

Being part of a society sometimes means that you have to go along with things you don't like/want because the consequences of letting you have your way harm others.

I don't know about Oregon, but at least *some* states with such laws will allow you to home school your unvaccinated kid.

As I've said before, maybe they should set up seperate schools for the willfully unvaccinated. Of course getting the kids to/from those schools without exposing other kids is a problem...
kengr: (Default)
Since Fay was still sick, I'd told her I'd make a run out to her new place with some supplies.

she's also buying a used monitor from Doug, So I figured I'd haul that too.

I as a bit worried because my stomach was a bit iffy when I went to bed last night. But it was ok when I got up.

I got myself fed and medicated, then went to the Albertsons to get the stuff Fay needed (toilet paper and kleenex-like substance). Found a good deal on the TP. 12 pack of MD for $4.99.

She'd asked for Puffs tissues with lotion. Single box was $1.99. 4 pack was $5.99. I texted her and she was ok with the 12 pack and the 4 pack.

Then it was back to the apartment to load the folding cart for the trip. And to rest up a bit before leaving (yes, I'm that out of shape).
Read more... )
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If you are on Twitter check out

My friend Fayanora has posted a bunch of links from there that are *so* educational.

My comment on the "ripping people" one:
"I was just joking" is *never* a "real" response. It's an attempt to avoid admitting that you *were* picking on (bullying) someone. And indicates that you knew so at the time.

It ranks right up the with "apologies" along the lines of "I'm sorry that you took it that way"
kengr: (Default)
I have some vague recollection that there's a way to tell windows to *not* install any of its stuff on any drive but the one it's installed on. If so does anybody remember what it is?

I'm asking because I've now had to fix two boxes because I disconnected a drive that I was using purely for data, only to discover windows wouldn't boot because it'd installed drivers or an update or something on the secondary drive.

I'm assuming Windoze did something like "oh look, this drive has *way* more space than drive C, I'll just install this over there..."

Odd dream

Mar. 23rd, 2019 10:53 am
kengr: (Default)
It had me wandering around various places, a fair bit on a bike. Not any bike I've ever owned either.

One howling continuity error (that of course passed unnoticed in the dream) was that somehow I'd gotten from Portland to Spokane in at most a few hours on the bike.

After more wandering around places, I wound up at a sort of cros between a leather tasting (a sort of demo where folks can get various BDSM things demoed, and maybe even try a bit) and a play party.

Ran into a few interesting people there. Even had the start of a scene with more promised for later.

Then I woke up.

Which left me a rather unhappy camper considering how many years it's been. *sigh*
kengr: (Default)
Riverside, Iowa
March 22, 2233
James Tiberius Kirk is born
kengr: (Default)
March 17, 1998 6:15 pm PST
The Change occurs. Nanutucket Island sent back to 1250 BC
The rest of the world experiences a massive change in natural laws.

Dies the Fire Series by S. M. Stirling

On this day

Mar. 9th, 2019 10:56 pm
kengr: (Default)
March 9, 2256 Construction begins on Babylon V station
kengr: (Default)
I've known about symbolic links for a very long time. Mid 80s?

But windows didn't support them. But I recently found out that Win 7 and later *do* support them. Which solved a major disk space problem.

What is a symbolic link you ask?

It's a way to have the same file or directory appear at more than one place on the drive, but only have *one* copy of the actual contents.

You can do it in a command prompt window if you open it as an administrator. That's a pain.

But there's also a util you can install that adds it to the file manager menu. There's also a way to install it in Win XP.

I used it for a couple of things. One was to duplicate a directory tree so I could have it where it was copied from another drive, and also have it in a place that made more sense.

I did this with a "join" which meant it's the same directory/folder "tree". That means if i add/delete or change a file in *either* location it applies to both.

The real life saver was on one of the NAS drives. Since Fay hadn't been coming over to watch TV with me, that meant that I'd had to keep track of what she had and hadn't seen seperately from what I'd seen.

I had run out of space on the drive because of having the two sets of files. Using symbolic links for *files* meant I could have the files in one place and put "hardlinks" in the directory of stuff she hadn't seen yet.

Not only did this save space by not having the dta stored twice, but when you do links at the file level you can delete or rename a file in one location and not change the file in another location.

Took a while to do it, but I freed up around 100 gig. Which gives me breathing room until I can finish saving up for a new drive.

I still have to go thru and do this for the folders of music files for various devices. Ditto for ebook files for my kindle and the like.

Food box

Feb. 24th, 2019 08:08 pm
kengr: (Default)
Went to the food box place Saturday. Got there about 9 am and there was already somebody in line ahead of me. But much to my surprise, there wasn't *anybody* in line for produce.

In fact we didn't get anyone for produce until about 10am (shortly before the truck with produce and other stuff from the food bank arrived.

The shelves were pretty bare when it was my turn inside. Got less than half want had been "normal". And when I got outside and got in line for the produce, there were a dozen folks in line ahead of me.

Missed out on a few things that I'd seen them put pout, but nothing important. Still got an okay selection of stuff though. Just less than "normal".

The two biggies were I got a pineapple from the produce and a bag of puffed barley from the food box.

The puffed barley looks a lot like puffed rice, but smaller. Tastes like it too. I did an experiment earlier and tossed some in a bowl with some butter and microwaved it for about 30 seconds.

Took it out, salted it and stirred it up some. Not bad. As I expected, it was much like popcorn, but without the hulls. since the hulls are a major pain for me, this is good.

I think next time I'll try 40 seconds. I'll also have to try it with puffed rice. If I can get some that is plain, not drowned in sugar.
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A week or so back, Doug gave me a 500 gig Western Digital hard drive. It was a PATA (IDE) drive. Since new computers don't *do* PATA anymore, he had no use for it. But since I still use a lot of systems that are old enough to use them, I could use it.

I had another drive I'd had for a while (same model in fact) and since I was running low on space on the NAS (Network Attached Storage) boxes, I decided to plug them into my main box to use for storing some files that weren't as important from other drives.

Things were copying well when all of a sudden an error message popped up about the drive no longer being available.

I went into Computer Management, and did a refresh on the drive list. the 500 gig drive didn't show up anymore. but a "new" drive did show up. It had a semi-random string of ccharacters as a drive label.

And it showed as having two partitions. One of 16 gig, and the other of 2048 gig. (figures from memory, the may be a bit off). I couldn't do anything to the partitions. Got error messages.

I stuck it in my "bench" system and got much the same results. Tried accessing it with a Linux drive partitioning CD. Same deal.

*something* went south. And I now have a drive that reports that it iis a 1.3 *petabyte* drive!

If only...

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