Thursday, April 23, 2015

Happy Anniversary

This seems to be the 10th anniversary of the Maker Faire. This from an article:

Former O’Reilly employee Bruce Stewart remembers that first Faire day, and surely speaks for other parents, in seeing his young son’s reaction to the event: “I remember walking up to the gate with my son Kindy, then 11,” he says. “We stopped in our tracks at the sound of a very loud, fiery explosion coming from somewhere near the entrance. Kindy looked at the tall flames rising up, looked back at me, and started running towards their source. He was sucked in before we even got inside! Between robots, Legos, fire, explosions, and the great ‘build what you want out of this e-junk’ room, he was in heaven. I remember thinking: ‘I bet this is a deeply interesting and inspirational experience for kids.'”

Yeah, flames, ka-booms, smoke and noise, what more could a kid ask for?

There's one coming up at the Denver Museum of Natural History in early June. I'll be there with some kid-pleasing stuff.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Poke Yoke

A native Japanese speaker at work has explained to me that Poke Yoke is in fact NOT Japanese for Idiot Proof in spite of its extensive use along those lines. He explains that by altering the pronunciation ever so slightly, to Poe-Kah Yo-Kay one gets to the actual inner meaning of the words.
Poe-Kah is the sound made when an irate parent raps a troublesome offspring on the head as punishment for an infraction. Probably similar to the sound you get when knocking on a hollow wooden door. Yo-Kay means “avoidance”.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Safety Nannies Rejoice!

Crispin Sinclair, son of Clive Sinclair inventor of the computer of the same name, has announced the launch of the worlds safest bicycle. For only $2970.00 you too can have a recumbent bike with crash bars and a full roll cage. For an additional $1480, you can get a 1/3hp electric motor attached to help speed you on your way.

O.K. that roll cage might have helped when I got T-boned by the kid on the mountain bike but at some point you have to tell the bubble wrappers to piss off. Next thing you know this will be required on motorcycles along with air bags and seat belts. Someone will build a prototype and apply for a patent, then lobby congress to make it mandatory for all motorcycles sold in the U.S. with a "modest" royalty paid to the troll.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Blogversary

Billlls mind has been idle for 7 years now. Also somewhat earlier, (1775) the battles of Lexington and Concord were fought. All in all a good day for revolting developments.

QOTD

Found here at the conservative tree house this has to set a whole new standard to the art of obfuscation:
Let me attempt a translation: Her greatest accomplishment was in not getting tied down in petty details like the day-to-day running of the State Department which would involve knowing things like who was being murdered at any given moment or who the devil those wogs are that she has to shake hands with after a long jet flight to who-knows-where. Rather she was only concerned with the big picture of who has contributed to her election campaign charitable trust and how much.

There is a helpful set of rules the peasantry are expected to follow at the link that reads a lot like the advice the liberals give to crime victims. Remember if you tell them in a believable manner how much you enjoyed the non-consensual sex you just had with them, they may drop the requirement that there be no witnesses.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Minimum Wages

As was noted here before, radio host Michael Brown of KHOW has proposed putting a ballot question on the Denver ballot for the next election to raise the Denver minimum wage to $52.80. I think this is a swell idea and I'd certainly volunteer to help gather signatures but why stop there? Let's word the proposed new law so that the city council had only two alternatives: 1. Let the minimum wage become $52.80 or 2. Repeal the minimum wage in its entirety.

That's right, leave it up to the city council to take all or nothing.

On The Energy Front

The city of Boulder is working very hard to nationalize all of Xcel energy's holdings in the county and to run its own electric utility company. They are running into some logistical problems and have asked Xcel to supply them with power, presumably generated outside of Boulder county until they can get up and running.

As most of Boulders power seems to be generated by one coal-fired plant on the city limits, this may take a while. In the meantime I suggest that Xcell give the rest of us a break and supply Boulder with all the power they need, but exclusively from their wind and solar generation facilities, and at the full cost of same. Likewise the reliability.

During the summer this should be hardly noticeable up in the Peoples Republic as the blackouts can be explained as rolling Earth Day celebrations. It may get a bit harder in the winter though, especially if the petroleum companies get on board and refuse to sell anything but free-range, sustainable, frack-free gasoline and natural gas in Boulder county. Satellite pictures of Colorado at night will look just like the pictures of the Korean peninsula with Boulder county the blacked out area.

Update: Added link, also the state is not involved, at least not directly. Sorry.

Minimum Wages

Or maybe it should be called the Minimum Wedgie. MacDonald s would not disappear and I wouldn't lose my job as I can design robotic burger maker that could turn out identical burgers 24/7 at the equivalent of $15/hr. Possibly less.

Along the same lines there's a radio host in Denver who is threatening to put a measure on the Denver municipal ballot to raise the minimum wage there to $52.80. I'd sneak across the city limits and vote for this twice. I'd serve the bastards right.

Friday, April 17, 2015

School Lunch

We all have fond (?) memories of the lunches served to us in school but now the Presidents wife is getting involved. Here's a picture of a school lunch served in Portsmouth VA. Some complain about bad lighting, but I thing it's a masterpiece of the photographers art.
Some really gifted Photoshop artist has made this very large garden snail almost look like a fish fillet under a whole wheat roll. The other stuff is presumably Purina Snail Chow put there to keep the entree fresh.

Gun Fun Update

The results from the qualifier were posted and it seems I moved up from Novice to Marksman, and Mike, my shooting buddy moved up from Marksman to Sharpshooter so yay us!

Yesterday and today it snowed. It's still snowing. Heavy wet stuff that weighs about 50 lb/shovel full. Having put all the serious snow removal stuff in inconvenient locations, I'm still waiting for my socks to dry out from fetching the paper and putting out the trash. And the recycling. Springtime in the Rockies is when Mother Nature bangs the Summer/Winter switch up and down a few times to keep everybody on their toes.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Globull Warming

Gotta keep up to date on this hot topic. Here's an article from the Washington Post:
    The Washington Post.... 
The Arctic Ocean is warming up, icebergs are growing scarcer and in some places the seals are finding the water too hot, according to a report to the Commerce Department yesterday from Consulafft, at Bergen, Norway. Reports from fishermen, seal hunters and explorers all point to a radical change in climate conditions and hitherto unheard-of temperatures in the Arctic zone. Exploration expeditions report that scarcely any ice has been met as far north as 81 degrees 29 minutes.  Soundings to a depth of 3,100 meters showed the gulf stream still very warm. Great masses of ice have been replaced by moraines of earth and stones, the report continued, while at many points well known glaciers have entirely disappeared.  Very few seals and no white fish are found in the eastern Arctic, while vast shoals of herring and smelts which have never before ventured so far north, are being encountered in the old seal fishing grounds. Within a few years it is predicted that due to the ice melt the sea will rise and make most coastal cities uninhabitable.

Sure enough, the Washington Post, November 2, 1922.

Buy A Gun Day

April 15th is national Buy A Gun Day. I bought mine about 3 weeks ago to beat the rush, but looky here what's coming on the market: Your very own laser, and none of that wimpy "40 watt range" toy stuff either. This one from General Atomics starts at 75Kw and is scalable up to 300Kw. Let me tell you folks, that'll really roast your marshmallows and out to some significant distances too. Lockheed can shoot down small rockets out to 1.5 Km (about 1 mile) with 10 KW.

The best part is that the little laser looks to weigh in at about 600 lbs and is self-contained which means it only needs a swivel platform to fit into the back of a 1/2 ton pickup truck. Roughly the power of a 20mm anti-tank rifle and genuinely "flat" shooting. What's not to like?

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Tax Day

So here's a musical interlude:

I'd file sexual assault charges against the IRS, but they'd just turn around and file prostitution charges against me.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Dueling

The sport has been out of favor for far too ling in my opinion. I vote to bring it back with a few revisions to the traditional rules to bring it into the 21st century.

First, the reason for this is the challenge by a Polish Prince issued to UKIP spokesman Nigel Farage over an offense taken from Nigel's position on immigrants. The Prince demands satisfaction on the field of honor with swords.

The problems:
1. Traditional rules of dueling give the selection of weapons to the challenged party. No telling what Nigel might pick but whatever it is, the Prince is stuck with it.

2. Normally the nobility is forbidden from dueling with commoners. We in the U.S. don't recognize titles of nobility within our borders although we do grant recognition of status in certain cases. Elected officials for example are called "Honorable". No matter how corrupt.

3. In most countries dueling is illegal especially when the possibility of officially disposing of a body is involved.

I would propose some solutions.
 Item 1 doesn't need one as such although historically, when an older person is challenged by a much younger, stronger, and healthier one the older fellow can either pick a method more suitable to old age and treachery or submit a pinch hitter. This all too often leads to an uneven match up with an unacceptable outcome. A limit of 20 years of age differential would be imposed and no hired guns.

For item 2, I would grant title to all elected officials, some title on the order of noacCount  which aside from granting membership to the ennobled class, carries no other advantage. Further, dueling would be limited to the nobility. Exclusively. This is absolutely necessary to prevent disgruntled constituents from doing away with elected officials willy-nilly. This also addresses item 3.

So Nigel picks the weapons and he and the Prince have it out on the field of honor. Or Mitch McConnel and Harry Reid duking it out in the Senate gym. Or Sarah Palin and Hillary Clinton... oh wait, the 20 year rule.

It's got possibilities though.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Gun Fun APP

And here you thought your iPhone would not only be pretty useless in a fight, but likely the cause of an altercation to begin with. There's an app for that.