It wasn't me. You can't prove anything.


The litmus test for political/social spectrum

The test

Conservatives believe that people need to be made/coursed to make specific decisions.

Liberals believe that people should have decisions made for them.


Conservatives want rules that reward and penalize people for their decisions. "Why else have rules?"

Liberals want automatic catch all rules that no one can fall through. "Think about the children."


Conservatives believe that every one should have opportunity and a chance. Once they blow the chance they should be run over by society to allow others to have the same opportunity. "Hang'em high!"

Liberals believe there are two layers of society. The people in control and the people being controlled. If these two layers do not exist, create the separation. "Tax the rich."


Conservatives believe government is for the collective defense and support of approved individual decisions and to punish unapproved individual decisions.

Liberals believe that government exists to make approved decisions for people and keep people from making unapproved individual decisions.


These are all ways of restating the first "The test" set of differences. I cannot think of any examples. This is bullshit. It sounded good for a minute. Is there a single filter by which one can determine general tendencies for future decision making of a conservative and liberal nature? I can't wrap my head around the precise line that splits the two ideologies. I'm not trying to divide anyone. Most people probably have bits of their personality from both camps.

What do you think?

Metro missing an opportunity

Most of the time I might notice one person drinking coffee or eating something on the bus. This morning, the guy in front of me had a coffee. The guy behind me was eating chips. The guy to my right was eating something that looked like a bagel. I have to wait till I get to work to get free coffee. It would be nice if I had the money to eat breakfast.

How do people afford to eat stuff on the go every day? There must be a load of money in this area. There is a little cafe in our building that is open for breakfast and lunch. I ate there yesterday. The sandwich I had was pretty good.

How many business plans have come about that put the selling of food on a Metro bus? I bet they do it in Europe or Japan. Even just a vending machine would sell stuff like mad. What else is there to do on a bus?

  • Read. BAH!!!
  • Surf the net on your phone if you have one.
  • Talk to a stranger. Who the hell needs that? Do you know the kind of people who ride the bus?
  • Sleep. This is dangerous because you will wake up at the bus barn.

There are signs all over the bus. No food. No drink. No noise. No ignoring the rules.


People say you can only get a loan if you don't need one. Banks say only people who don't have money ask for loans. When will the insanity end?

Bill has the office across the hall from me. He and I are coughing our heads off. He came in this morning and aid it sounds like a tuberculosis ward back here.

I finally finished off the Easy-Mac bowls. I had three today because I feared that if I only ate two, the other would fossilize in a drawer.


Bus hose

Why doesn't the bus driver ... BACK UP?!! Do they not have reverse on buses in Canada? WTF!?!


Our network took a huge dump this morning. We got most of the company back online and had to fight to isolate the one piece of cable that we needed to replace. Once one bit of network gizmos go down, they typically bring down healthy network gizmos. We spent another hour tracking down and resetting things to make sure we didn't get two failures simultaneously. We call these days "work days".

We were running around plugging and unplugging equipment. We were watching for lights on network jacks to blink specific colors and at specific rates. We noted dead connections. We rebooted printers. We cursed. We yelled and yelled at equipment. We swapped cables and breathed in dust. There are network bits still in daily use that are 15 years old. Those are the ones we trust. There are bits we replaced last week. These are suspect.

When we pull that cable out of the wall I will inspect it for bite marks because I'm starting to suspect gremlins.

People call from all over the company. "Hey, did you know the network is down?"

"Yup, we are on it." We answer.

"I can't get to my file." Someone else states.

"Yup, we are on it." We answer.

"Facebo... er, the CRM web page is down." complains the fourteenth person.

"Yup, we are on it." We answer.

There is a hidden advantage to VOIP. When the network dies, so do the phones.

I wish I could have videoed the whole thing. It is interesting to watch people work to diagnose a network issue. I found out today that we have a set of walky-talkys at the company specifically for these situations.

The building

That building that is being built at the corner where I wait for the bus looks a lot like a gas station. There are a couple of issues.

  • There does not look like enough room between the stalls for a gas station.
  • I never noticed any tanks going in. This is usually a big issue.
  • Normally gas stations are surrounded with ways to get in and out of the gas station. There is a brand new sidewalk all down one side of this properly.
  • Most of the time, gas stations are not right next to existing strip malls.

So, what the hell is it? You know, when it is built, it is going to be something completely normal and average. It is going to be such a let down to find out it is just another _____________.

Bus conversation

On the way in this morning on the bus, these two men in front of me had a conversation. They talked about their travels, family, careers and the weather.

One man had lived in Houston most of his life. He was a bit older. He was riding the bus from the highway 6 area. His wife dropped him off. He road all the way down town. He had to be at work at 09:00.

The other guy was younger. He had just gotten out of a school for radio production. He was originally from some place in Michigan. He attended some classes there and some here. He got off at the same stop I get off at. This is his first job out of school. He had to be there by 08:00.

I did not contribute to the conversation. I read Dilbert and User Friendly and some news sites. It amazes me how much modern communication technology has closed us off from the people sitting next to us.

There have been people staging a conversation on the bus to hock Jesus. Fifteen people a day hold one side of a conversation through a mobile phone on the bus. Old Mexican women seem to be the last of a dying bread of people who will strike up a conversation on the bus with someone. There is a woman and a young man who talk about a class I've run in to a couple times in the evenings.


Chris Redfern (I'm not sure how to spell the man's name, apologies.) said "... Every time one of the fuckers says ..." while referring to Tea Party people who disagree with him. He was talking to union members. I disagree with you.

Someone paid a prank this morning. One of our coworkers left his class ring on a table at work. One of our other employees suspended it in a jello mold and brought it in to work this morning. What an awesome prank. Non-destructive. The ring is fine. The guy called the car dealership to find out if he left it there. It was a whole thing. I missed it. I was working the whole time this was happening.

The Gates foundation went to China and tried to convince rich people to give more of their money away. Most Chinese rich are new rich and had to really bust their ass to get there. They want to hang on to what they have. One man promised to give his money away when he dies. A woman interviewed said (from memory) "How do you know he will go through with it. If he doesn't, who can blame him? It is his money. He worked hard to get it. He can do what he wants with it." When is the last time you heard an average Joe American talk like that?

It is so nice at the house. I run Linux and when I need a piece of software, I install it. I've forgotten the troubles of having to buy software for the most part. Of course there are things you cannot get. Games, good video editing software and any number of proprietary software. Though, most proprietary software is going online only. Things like Tax preparation software and the like are examples.


Time the last couple of days

Here are the things I've done at work today and yesterday. I'm getting thrown all over the place. This is normal.

# time 2010-09-28
    o other - sysad
        2   - Scripting up my own email box shrinkage and online research so I do not look like a hypocrite and can help people.
        2   - Messing with the parts DB for a lost page.
        1   - [redacted] DHCP for some funky switch, MAC DB and asset tag.
        1   - More documentation on inbox shrinking.
        1   - Email inbox size spreadsheet and sending out emails.
        1   - The following items
        <1  - Yum on rhel 4.x wiht [redacted].
        <1  - [redacted] pflash_package build/release scripts 101.
        <1  - System pinging and network status with [redacted].
        <1  - Hunting down a UPS for [redacted].
        <1  - mounting on a flash card os 101 with [redacted] (zbox).
# time 2010-09-27
    o other - sysad
        2   - Document for shrinking inboxes and using the email archive.
        2   - Entering data from the Office recon earlier this year.
        1   - WLAN password change and email.
        1   - Replace switch in pick and place room.
        1   - Calculating and email people's email inbox sizes.
        1   - [redacted] DHCP troubles. Trying some different things.
        <1  - DHCP for [redacted].
        <1  - Document Parts DB locations


This is a notes video, like the notes entry I put up on the blog. Just clisp smashed together. Sorry for the crappy editing.


A cap and ball revolver is not considered to be a firearm. G. Gordon Liddy is a convicted felon, but may poses a loaded cap and ball pistol. Interesting.

I started just videoing nothing. The commute in this morning, I just filmed crossing the street. You know, I'm not going to use the footage, but I took the video not withstanding. All I have to do is charge the battery and not use the footage. I've lost little to nothing.

Don't you hate it when one sleeve roils up really nice and the other gets all bent and twisted and refuses to cooperate? I do.

Which came first, the illegal immigrant or the job? Asked by NPR. It sounds like the INS and other law enforcement agencies are going after employers finally. I say make employers pay back Social Security and income tax (all of it) on the illegals and sick the IRS on the employers.

Nat and I saw Inception and Kick Ass. Other than that, I haven't seen any movies all summer. I'm not worried about it either. I didn't even think about it until I was listening to a podcast reminiscing about the summer movies.

I need to check out Dexter on Showtime I believe. People have mentioned it. It sounds like a good time.

Sci Fi shows in Canada: eureka, Stargate Universe, warehouse 13, Caprica. What other shows are filmed up there? It sounds like they have quite an industry going.


Tit for Tat

Motorcyclist Wins Taping Case Against State Police

"Slashdot readers may recall the case of a Maryland motorcyclist (Anthony Graber) arrested and charged with wiretapping violations (a felony) when he recorded his interaction with a Maryland State Trooper. Today, Judge Emory A. Pitt threw out the wiretapping charges against Graber, leaving only his traffic violations to be decided on his October 12 trial date. 'The judge ruled that Maryland's wire tap law allows recording of both voice and sound in areas where privacy cannot be expected. He ruled that a police officer on a traffic stop has no expectation of privacy.' A happy day for freedom-loving Marylanders and Americans in general."

Yes! I have friends who are cops. I hope this doesn't piss them off too much. If the cops can video me on a traffic stop, I should be able to do the same.


In the UK, if you want to rent a BlueRay DVD, you must do it from a brik and mortar business. That is, you cannot rent a BlueRay online in the UK. This creates an artificial preciousness. It also makes me glad I am not one of the fools in a rural area who bought a BlueRay player. I live in the U. S. and I have zero interest in buying a BlueRay player.

Some Japanese film was shot at 25 frames per second. The seventh reel was optional apparently. No one could tell the difference except for the amount of sleep they obtained.

All the BOINC projects suck.

Everything goes on the blog. That is my new rule. I've said this before, but I need to stick with it.

Credit cards are coming out with apps for phones to allow payments for things like subway fairs and candy bars. It just seems like another excuse for people to steel phones.

Tea Party

G. Gordon Liddy is going to tern 80 in November and has never seen anything like it.

Whether you call it the Tea Party, the Patriot Party, The Town Hall Movement, The Small Government Party or the racist bigot homophobe party, you have to deal with the party if you talk or do politics.

There is no leader. There are little groups. There is no centralized person to attack or blame. Thus, you have to vilify regular Americans in order to make the group look bad. This makes for a lot of matters.

People are fed up with both Republicans and Democrats. No one in government is listening to the people they represent. The people in the government only seem to represent the SIGs (Special Interest Groups). They seem to represent the all mighty checkbook. The mightier, the better.

Will this movement have any steam after this next election cycle? I sure hope so. I would like to see a movement form that had no party affiliation. It was just full of human citizens who kept track of how people act and their actions. This would simply make people accountable for what they do and say.

Am I a member of the Tea Party? They don't print cards from what I can tell. I would have to get circumcised (again) to be Jewish. I can just say if I am a member of the Tea Party or not. I have to give a solid maybe.

Texas Climate

The first draft of cold wind in winter came today.
Today was nothing special. Just another among many.
Summer will counter attack before winter comes.
How will we know when winter is here?

These tings happen in Texas.
Every year is half a winter.
Half a spring and half a fall.
Every year is double portion of summer.

We don't seem to mind much. Most of the time.
People make du just fine.
It ain't always easy. It is sometimes a chore.
Just to walk across the porch for lunch.

Just hope the mosquitoes all dye off this year.
That first cool breeze of fall.
That first whiff of winter blowing by.
That is worth waiting through double summer for.

This is not the worse thing I've ever written. It goes on the blog. How will I know the worse thing I've ever written? Well, I have to die first. Then I can go through my library of output and come to a conclusion. I plan on making this as daunting a task as possible. Thus, it goes on the blog. Even if I don't particularly think much of it, here it is.



Nat went this morning and got breakfast for every one.

Elle vacuumed earlier. YES! This kid thing is starting to pay off.

I mowed. Nearly killed me. Didn't get any weed-whacking done. Didn't have the strength. I could have hidden in the back yard. Ran through an entire tank of gas and had to refill on the last three strokes of the back yard.

Nat is in the kitchen as I type making chicken and dumplings for every one.

I am amazingly tired. Working yesterday was easy, but something about just going in took the wind out of my sails. I had to modify how an RPM works. It only took me a couple uninterrupted hours. That is the trick. It would have taken two normal days to do what I did in less than three hours on the weekend.

I've gotten zero video. I caught Elle dancing that is kind of cute. I don't want to put it up though. I did get one pick that was kind of interesting at work. Not sure what is going on with the bench. But I deleted it along with the crappy video I shot.

We met up with my parents yesterday to get Elle a dress for Halloween and to give me my birth certificate for the passport thing. They laminated my birth certificate a million years ago so I have to order another one for the passport. That is another step. I should have known something like this would happen. It never fails that I have to jump through a million hoops to get anything out of the government. They don't say "do not laminate this document, but keep it forever in a safe place or you will have to jump through a million hoops to get another one." on the sheet for goodness sake. Maybe they should.

Laugh out loud

Collage humor has been seriously phoning it in lately. They still have some diamonds here and there.


Damn poll

Vi ist mine elegtrizitie havink with the blinkink?

About time

The progress bar I don't mind waisting my time at.

This is the first internet I've sent out to my friends in a long time.


Time Lapse from a guy at work

This guy is one of the down town crowd. He commutes against the majority of traffic. It's funny that he starts and ends in a parking garage. Not sure why that amuses me so much.

RAID sucks

We finally replaced and re-RAIDed the drive that was reporting massive errors today. I had to warn every one. I found yesterday the distribution list I've been using for engineering does not work. I copied and pasted the email addresses in to my email this time. At least that worked.

I attempted to match the drive partitions by hand. Of course, I screwed it up. Matt, my RAID surveyor of the day, showed me a sftab command that did the trick. Need to be careful with that one, but it works like a champ.

The first round of messing with the RAID stuff didn't work. The second, fifth, ninth either. Then, something like the twelfth worked. We swapped drives in and out of the system about a dozen times. We played with grub. I hate playing with grub. It scares me. Particularly, it scares me on a system that is not just a throw away system.

It appears to be working now. We did have to go back and make sure grub was booting off the correct manner. The drive usage report doesn't match up to my expectations. The massive writes make sense, but the two drives do not have identical writes and reads after you adjust for the sync of the two drives.

Next time. ... I have no idea. Maybe making the boot partition a real non-RAID partition. I'm lost. What have I learned? Don't trust RAID mirrors to be restoreable. RAID is a scam.


Someone put a Stargate in their front yard. How cool is that?

A couple of the tech podcasts I frequent are all kinds of happy about a new microphone that plugs in to a jack on the bottom of the newer devices. I have an older one. The sound quality is not that bad on the Flip I have, but this is an area where they left a lot of room for improvement. Now that there is come competition, I think Flip devices are a bit over priced. They need a light/flash and exchangeable SD cards.

Antibiotics should not be taken with alcohol. This is a myth according to Dr Karl. This came about because the original use of antibiotics was for sexually transmitted diseases. If you consume alcohol, you become disinhibited and may pass the sexually transmitted disease to someone before it is cured.

We had a storm go past at lunch time. A couple folks got stuck out in it. It was gone in no time. Would have made a good time lapse.

Remember the hat with a monocular on it? I have been thinking of trying to make a hat that has a camera mount. I noticed one for sale a while back. I can do a better job. I believe I blogged about this very idea well before the company started selling them.

There is a guy claiming caffeine drove him to kill his wife. No one is buying it.

Wind turbines make noise. Offshore wind farms cost nearly as much per kilowatt hour as a nuclear plant. Nuclear is at least pretty quiet.

I cannot express how much it pisses me off to have to reboot my phone to send a goddamn text message.


Another trip home [Update]

I'm going to keep doing this until I get it right! (not). The thing is, I completely missed two road rage incidences. One was just people screaming at one another a block away. No hope of catching that one. The other was a guy who got honked at when the light turned green. He just stopped and flipped the guy off in the car behind him. He waited until the light turned yellow. He waited for the light to turn red and just as it did, he tore through the intersection. The guy behind him didn't honk a second time. He was trapped by traffic and me standing on the sidewalk.

Eh, the one that got away. So it goes.

Title: Another trip home

Description: A compilation of the bus trip home. The skid marks from the wreck the other night at the end.

Tags: Houston Texas Harris County commute


I have no idea why this video never got a thumbnail (preview picture) It has one on YouTube's site.


Rapper, kind of. Pretty cool. Lance is better.

Quantum conundrum

If you think you understand quantum theory and math, you don't. If you get in over your head and your think you will never get it. You are right.

If you study quantum and you get to a specific point in the theories and think that you are so confused that you should have not made it to this point without having gotten lost long ago, you just might be on the road to getting it.

Have you ever thought about something and felt one moment like you had it and the next like you were completely on the wrong path? That is quantum. In order to get it, you should feel both confident and wishy-washy that you both know what you are doing and are completely lost. Once you occupy both states of intensity and position at the same instant, you will snap in to understanding.

This is not nirvana. You simply understand something. This will not help you go any further. This will not allow you to unlock anything cool in the latest video game. It will be an entire genera of mathematics that was both always there and yet, out of reach, available to you.

The dead drive

Did something for the first time today. I had to replace the drive on a live database today. First you make a backup of the database. Then you replace the drive. Then you add it to the RAID array. then you hope everything syncs properly.

In the morning, I was so stressed out over this that I had a hard time concentrating on much of anything else. It took up most of my day to be hones.t This sucks, but cause I have a ton of work to do. It isn't like this is all I have on my plate. I got other stuff done, but I was distracted.

Fifteen minutes before I was supposed to pull the trigger on this, I got called in to do a bunch of Exchange server stuff. It never fails. I'm sitting there sweating this new thing that I'm probably bad at and I have to wait 45 minutes hearing about people's mailboxes and size limits and such. Yes, that stuff is important, but Jesus! I got this scary thing to do.

This means, my window closed. I only got the DB backed up. Now I have to go over it again tomorrow. More sweating bullets.


Book review

War decisions politically motivated? Already spent more money than Bush?

______________ for president 2012.

Municipal radios

I've heard a bunch of things about municipal radio systems. These are surely not true for all systems. I have found no real evidence that any or all of these are true or not. I haven't done my homework.

  • They have GPS now
    • One radio can detect the location of another if it is dropped or someone is not responding.
    • A radio can send GPS info to another for things like landing positions of Life Flight or the location of a problem.

    • There is a log file somewhere with the movements of the radios.
  • A radio can be remotely disabled or enabled.
  • One municipality can call another over a network separate of the phone system for disaster coordination.
  • It is possible for a ground cop to speak directly to the helicopter.
  • Some radio traffic is scrambled.

These all sound cool. I would love to know how many of these are in use on a daily basis. Surely it is expensive and not every city or po-dunk can afford all the bells and whistles.

I've heard a story that some city somewhere had the mobile phone system go down and the city services could not communicate. The radio system was fine, but no one was used to using it. They had gotten used to just calling when they needed something. This makes me wonder if something should be done to he mobile phone network (monitoring) during these municipal disaster tests that happen every so often.


Someone is trying to get the law changed to allow genetically altered salmon. The fish grow faster and fatter. This will save money and resources for fish farmers. Is this a good thing?

There is some kind of device that they have implanted in a rat that generates electricity from blood. Blood is full of sugar, oxygen and fat. That is about all you need for a chemical generator. The idea of using one of these devices to charge my phone from the spare tire around my middle is on its way. I can't wait. I need to charge my phone, hand me that fried chilly cheese donut.

I really, really REALLY thought it was Tuesday morning this morning. Nat is like "No, it's Wednesday." Crazy.


J-Turn in a big truck

OK, it is not a j-turn. It is still impressive.

I don't think he is doing it right

How many did he do the normal way before this one?

Lunch conversation

Went to SmashBurger for lunch. It has been a couple weeks since I last joined the group out for a lunch. It needs to be done for social reasons. I enjoy it besides. I spent under $7. Not much else gives you the return on investment of a face to face lunch.

  • Beer and cheese
    • How did humans discover the making of cheese and beer. Surely both were by mistake
      • Cheese may have come from using the same equipment over and over and it formed on the edges of pots or buckets used for transport.
      • Yeast may have come from someone walking through the Gran before it was baked. (ew!)
      • Is bread indeed more difficult to make than beer in an historic sense or the other way round.
    • Using a steel keg with the top cut off as a boiler because the six gallon pot is not big enough to make 5 gallons of beer without spilling.
    • Aeration, fermentation.
    • Aluminum affects taste negatively. Titanium and adamantium have not yet been tested.
  • One of the gang confided in me. Yesterday, he was looking for work. He had finished up several things. He struggled to be productive until about 17:00. Great. Work is good. He walked in this morning ready to start, full force. Wham, the network takes a nose dive and he didn't have a chance to even start the other tasks.
  • Network issues at work.
  • Josh's mom.
  • SmashBurger has good salads.

The nanny state ran out of tit

I listen to a bunch of political and financial news. I'm hearing a mantra over and over. The presenters, interviewees and basically every one chants the same thing over and over. "Tax the rich."

Who are these rich people?

Will increasing taxes on them make a difference to the ever elusive and ever shrinking middle class? Am I middle class? How do I tell?

One of the podcasts is a political podcast from Briton. The big deal across the pond are massive cuts that simply have to happen or the entire economy will grind to a shattering halt. People are all up in arms yelling "Cuts for the, but not for me." It didn't matter who was put in charge. The nanny state had simply run out of tit upon which to feed the drones. People are going to have to look after themselves.

This will always happen in socialism. People will always figure out how to game the system. In capitalism, you get ahead by making more money. In socialism, you get ahead by maximizing leisure time. Any time you do not take the nature of things (reality) in to your calculations, you eventually get bitten in the ass by reality. This might be called karma or by another name. I call it truth.

No system of government is perfect. It sounds like regulated capitalism works for a long time before you have real issues. You get these ups and downs. You get them in communism and socialism.



It was windy as bean festival today at lunch. I walked around the parking garage roof for a bit. It was hot, but the wind made it kind of nice.

Some guy on the elevator made a comment about me heading to the sixth floor. He was like "Leave you to your own device." I'm l;like "What?" I'm headed to the roof for lunch. Leave me alone. Of course, I didn't give him a piece of my mind. I didn't give him a dirty look. I just kept on about my business. nonconfrontational. I act a little too nuts to make people afraid of me in an elevator.

Left my camera at the house. It was sitting right where I left it to the left of my computer monitor. If anything cool had happened today I would not have had the opportunity to video it. Need to be a bit more conscientious. Normally, lately anyway, I toss my camera in my pocket for walking around. You just don't know when you will have something worth videoing happen in your lap.

The clouds were active. The winds were blowing fast at high altitude as well. The clouds looked all smeared above the bottom layer. The bottom layer of clouds was hauling ass. I watched one cloud get flattened out and rerolled while I watched. I wondered if it would have made a good time lapse.

A piece of plastic was flopping around one of the stair cases. An aluminum can was rolling back and forth in one of the corners. There was a pile of sand that was blowing around. The wind was blowing in all kinds of directions up there.

Bad cliche and grammar

I'm not one to talk. I am bad at this stuff. Still, I'm better than some and some bad grammar and most bad cliches piss me off.

"As you can see ..." needs to be stricken from human existence in all languages. I hear this all the time on YouTube videos. It is the worst kind of cliche. It is completely useless. Either direct people's attention to the object in the video by saying "Please direct your attention here." or "Look." while pointing or "See this?" while pointing. Saying "As you can see" sounds like "Look dumb ass, you should have already noticed this." to me.

"Actually" is a needless word. If something happened or if something exists then it has happen or does exist. Saying the word actually does not make it more so.

I need to find one of those counting clicker things. I want to shoot a video of me listening to the Caffeination Podcast and click the counter every time the guy who does that podcast says "actually". I'm thinking it is in the sixties in 15 minutes. That is about every other sentence. I like the podcast and listen despite the bucket of cliches.


It was just about all I had to make it in to work this morning.

A guy at work said he was pretty good a soccer as a youth, but realized he was never going to be as good as the Mexican kids. I heard from someone else that some of the Mexican kids miss school days to attend or play in soccer matches.

The costs for china are heading upward. Both labor and material costs are going up. There may be 1.x billion people in China, but they seem to have the same issues with the middle class getting tired of paying for everything that the west has. Go figure.

Several interviews have been done lately that tout small business of people who have lost their job, or left their job in these hard times and

The NFL argument in the news is being called a battle between billionaires and millionaires. That sounds about right to me. The players are considering dissolving the union of players to prevent a lockout. The union cannot sue the owners, but the individual players, as a gang or class action, could indeed sue the owners. Desperate times call for desperate measures.

Dr Karl introduced pain free fishing. You throw the fish in to freezing cold water and let them loose consciousness. Then you leave them in the air and they suffocate without waking up. I think he said 30 minutes in the ice. I always thought pain free fishing involved not sitting on any hooks.

My tooth hurts. I've had a sinus infection that keeps trying to get in my lungs. I've self medicated for over a week now. I missed Friday because I was a mess. Well, now my tooth hurts. I can tell it is the gum, not the tooth itself. It hurts when I bite down. This means infection in the gums. It is the tooth that has a root right under my sinus. This is not a good thing. It is feeling better since last night. Wish me luck.

Remember me complaining about the Twitter app not allowing direct access to a new tweet? I was pissed that you had to go through a menu item to start a new Tweet. "They just don't get it". I don't get it. You have to hit the top bar and drag down to get a new tweet entry box to show up. Who knew? I'm over forty. Give me a break.


Couple of cool pictures

I fear this is accurate.

This is like something out of a dream. It would give me nightmares. If I had a friend with an aquarium bedroom, I would get an RC shark and drive it around at night after4r they were snoozing just to share the love.

Both pictures found here.

Death Note

How many twists in this series? I lost count.

Spoiler alert!

Light Yagami is an intelligent young man who resents what appears to be a relentless increase of crime and corruption in the world around him. His life undergoes a drastic change when he discovers a mysterious notebook, known as the "Death Note", lying on the ground. The Death Note's instructions claim that if a human's name is written within it, that person shall die, as well as various other rules. Light is initially skeptical of the notebook's authenticity, but after experimenting with it using criminals, he realizes that the Death Note is real. After meeting with the previous owner of the Death Note, a shinigami named Ryuk, Light plans to become a god and establish a new world order by passing his keen judgment on those he deems evil and anyone who gets in his way.
Soon, the number of inexplicable deaths of reported criminals catches the attention of International Police Organization and a mysterious detective known only as "L". L quickly learns that the serial killer, dubbed by the public as "Kira" (キラ?, derived from the typical Japanese pronunciation of the English word "killer"), is located in Japan. He also concludes that Kira can kill people without laying a finger on them and that he is in Japan, after he uses a convicted criminal named Lind L. Taylor whose capture was kept secret, and who was condemned to die at that hour, pretending he is L so Light kills him. Light realizes that L will be his greatest nemesis, and a nuanced game of psychological cat and mouse between the two begins.

That link has a complete description of the plot. If you do not want to bother reading or watching the series, read the whole thing.

This was a very good series. I highly recommend it. Tons of twists. You know someone is going to get it and it is still awesome watching them get it. IT is not a fight kind of series. It is a suspense kind of series. The characters for the most part connect. The plot is fun to try and follow. The graphics are pretty typical of a series made from a manga. There is that shot straight out of the book kind of feel to most of the graphics and more than once action is simply a series static shots. It works for me.

Wreck near our home

This is a video of me being standing on a soapbox and shaking my proverbial fist at an injustice. I tried to keep it short. The soapbox comes at the end. Please skip it if you are not in to that sort of thing. I'm not sure I have much to add.

Title: Car wreck aftermath at the end of my street

Description: This is the aftermath of a car wreck at the end of my street. I stand on a soapbox at the end. Please skip it if you don't care. The hearsay is that it was a racer hitting a resident pulling on to Westheimer.

Keywords: Houston Harris County Texas street racing Westheimer crash wreck aftermath soapbox


On the Inside

A Portable Laser Backpack For 3D Mapping
wooferhound writes "A portable laser backpack for 3D mapping has been developed at the University of California, Berkeley, where it is being hailed as a breakthrough technology capable of producing fast, automatic and realistic 3D mapping of difficult interior environments. ... The backpack is the first of a series of similar systems to work without being strapped to a robot or attached to a cart. At the same time, its data acquisition speed is very fast, as it collects the data while the human operator is walking; this is in contrast with existing systems in which the data is painstakingly collected in a stop-and-go fashion, resulting in days and weeks of data acquisition time. It utilizes novel sensor fusion algorithms that use cameras, lasers range finders and inertial measurement units to generate a textured, photo-realistic, 3D model that can operate without GPS input and that is a big challenge."

How long before we have the mobile phone sized device like the first Ironman movie? Remember radar detectors in cars? Those things started out the size of a kitchen table. Heck, Cell Phones were the size of a suit case and only made phone calls.

I would love to have one of these things. I have no business need for it. I'm just nuts for interior maps of buildings for some reason. I used to say it was to think up DnD scenarios when I was a teen, but now I know it is just for the sake of staring at the maps and imagine walking around in the interior spaces. Maybe I'm an architect in another universe.



Sick. Feel much better now. Would never have made it through work. Wonder if anything cool happened.

Adam called me from work wanting to know where one of our servers got to. It was moved for heat purposes.

I woke up at the normal time. Felt like crap. Took a shower and felt even worse. I've been trying to self medicate. My symptoms are swollen glands, sore throat, cough, lots of phlegm. I'm sick. I popped some pills and went back to bed. Got up some time after 15:00.

I had a funny dream last night. I was walking down a street. There was some funky kind of car running down the street in a slow manor. It was tall, but all windows. It rolled over on tit's side. As we, me and some other guy, tried to push the vehicle on it's wheels, a tiger climbed out of the back. People, including myself scattered. Of course, being my dream, the tiger came after me. It was not running, but walking. I walked away thinking to myself "Why wasn't I videoing this? I reached in my pocket and grabbed my camera. Started videoing behind me.

I woke up. Rather than being happy that there was no tiger following me, I was pissed that I had no video of the event.

These guys get it

I hope DARPA is watching.

Looks like these folks have been at this whole robot domination thing for a while. I love it "State of the art VAX computer." OK, they didn't say that, but that is what makes it sound old. I was a sophomore in high school when this was shot in 1985.



I had a dream last night. I was a character in "Mad Mad Mad Mad World". I used to think that movie was really funny. I need to look it up and watch it again to figure out if it is still all that funny to me.

The working writer is a sad being. People who are good at art should find themselves poring their skill onto the world for every willing participant to ponder. They must, however, earn a living. Only bad artists seem to find benefaction. This world is more sad for it.

In 2013 a 3.x% real estate tax kicks in. This is designed to screw the retiring generation. This is in the new Obama Care bill. Damn good thing no one read this thing before it was passed.

The concept of commodities can be summed up in the following statement. You cannot butter next week's bread today. Today's butter will not be good by next week. You cannot butter an extra piece of bread today and have it last to next week. Technology only extends the time in some cases. You might say next year's bread. Have you ever tried to freeze bread or butter? It is possible, but I would not recommend it.

Had Windows 7 roll-back pull my fanny out of a crack this afternoon. I'm going to have to stop cussing it.

Not my bag

"Did you bring the pliers?


So, I'm completely out of ideas for videos. You are there for going to get crap. Enjoy.


Cross country rid

It is just not as impressive once you find out he is talking about England or the UK or whatever they are calling the place this week. Still, heck of a trip. Good for fellas.

Newbie YouTuber


Don't let having nothing to say stop you. This is true in all forms of media. If you are not being paid, the content is up to you. Have you sifted around beyond the videos presented on the lists on the front page or at the top of the categories? You could fill the Grand Canyon with DVDs full of people filming their cats lying on their backs and meowing. I did not know there were that many hedgehogs eating carrots in the world.

Before you shoot

Think about audio and lighting before you make the video. If you are outside, wind or road noise might drown you out. Walking from outside to inside may cause the camera to automatically white balance. This can be distracting or even garbage a shot. Low light shots are a nightmare in video. Practice before you loose that viral shot. Every setup is different. Shoot some test videos before you loose some content you cannot re-shoot.

Be prepared. I have a $25 generic waterproof case for rainy days or whatever. I've gotten a couple shots that I would not have otherwise been able to get. Think about extra batteries, a min tripod, some kind of light, What are you going to need. Small quick snapshot camera for those on the spot shots.

Have a plan. Have contingency plans. Have an escape plan.


Don't video people who do not want to be videoed. Do not shoot in places where it is not allowed. There is not much you can do about people walking down the street. Anyone can ask you to take down a video. Anyone can sue you over it. You may have the right to post it anyway. You may not. It is all up to the lawyers.

Have fun with it. don't let the end result make your life miserable. Don't be afraid to shoot something and throwing it away. You are already not getting paid for this.

Both, take people's advice and do not take their advice. This is true in all of life. Everyone seems to have an opinion when it is not their money, time, camera on the line.

figure out what you want to do. Don't be afraid to realize that you are no good at it. Try something else. Try everything. Don't try too hard. Don't take yourself too seriously.

Have your camera with you. Do not expect to capture that magic viral shot that will get you a billion hits. If you do get that shot, someone will steel your video and re-upload it and steel your thunder anyway.


Don't let not knowing the editing software stop you. One of the most popular vloggers is a guy who runs cars off hills and uses airbags to blow up toilets. He basically chops off the ends and uploads. You may or may not be the editing type. You might shoot and post or spend hours making it perfect. Try it both ways and find out what works for you.

Don't spend a lot of money on software before you figure this out. There are open source software packages out there that will get simple and even most complex editing done without spending a dime. Take your time and try out a couple different software packages. I use Linux. I had to go through a year and about fifteen packages before I found the combination that kind of works for me. The trip here was fun.

Do not use music you don't have rights to. Start here FreePD to find some background music. There are other places. Check them out.

Play with it. Make plenty of backup copies of your original videos. Mess around with what your software can do. Watch a bunch of videos and keep playing with yours until it looks like videos you enjoy. If your videos don't look like videos you enjoy, make different kinds of videos. Maybe you will enjoy those.

  • If a video feels too long, it is poorly edited.
  • If a video puts you to sleep, it is the editing.
  • If a video has awkward pauses, it is the editing.
  • If you are easily distracted or daydream, it is the editing.


  • If you think it is stupid, it is not the editing.
  • If you feel offended it is not the editing.

Don't be too hung up on time. Timing is very important, but flow is far more important. People have shot attention spans. If you are using another service to host your video, you may not have the 10 to 15 minute time limit, but keep things going.

There are a million other things that could be added to those lists. If you are not laughing at a video you think you should be laughing at, it is probably just not funny. Editing may or may not help. If you find yourself not making sense of a video that you think you should understand, editing may or may not help. These kinds of examples are endless.


There are a couple different kinds of editing. There is chopping, which is basically cutting everything in to clips and putting them back together in your preferred order with the correct spaces between. This kind of editing may not require rendering.

Rendering, sometimes called ripping, is taking all the edits you have done and mashing, flattening, them all down to a brand new full video. If you want to add text, transitions, change lighting, crop, or just about anything else, you will have to render the final cut. When iPhones say they will edit videos, the options are limited because of the power of the device. To do HD video editing, you need a Haas computer. More than one of the people doing daily vlogs have set their laptops in the fridge while performing this step.


Uploading is an art. YouTube really wants people to upload more content. The hardest thing in the world is to get good content. The web page stuff is easy compared to the content. I mean, having something to say is the building block for most communication. Well, I question that statement every day, but it is kind of the truth.

When you get to the upload page, you select your file and fill in information while it goes up the pipe to a server somewhere. It sounds easy. It sounds like there is not much to it. What can go wrong?

There are specific times of day that are better for uploading. I do not know what these times are because that is a myth.

YouTube changes the layout and bells and whistles of this mechanism on a daily basis. If you do game it and figure out how to make things run more smooth for you, it will be different tomorrow.

Sometimes it goes quickly and you get all your information set properly. Sometimes your video just goes slower and slower until it quits. Sometimes if you hit cancel, it cancels. Sometimes it doesn't. Sometimes your information all shows up. Sometimes one piece of it is mysteriously missing. Sometimes it is just plane wrong after the upload completes. Check your settings. Sometimes choices vanish off the form. Regardless, check your settings. Particularly check any privacy settings.


YouTube sticks all How To kind of videos under Fashion and How To. It doesn't matter if you are explaining how to make a DIY solar panel or a brick wall. It all goes under fashion and how to. When you click on the category, you get a million pretty young women explaining how the get some specific look and one video explaining how gravity affects light traveling through a vacuum.

If you go under Science and Technology, there are all kinds of videos about space exploration, chemical reactions, economics, lectures on quantum physics, it is very cool stuff. Mostly, it is phone reviews and "unboxing" videos. I now understand why people do this. I made a video called something like "Canon PowerShot 940 IS strait off the camera in low light". This video is my most consistent supply of hits. Mystery solved.

This is why I just stick everything I do under People and Blogs. It should be called People and Vlogs, but the word vlog did not exist when the category came about. Now, if YouTube proposes changing anything people raise holy hell.


I've had really good results with comments on my videos. I had one guy comment how shitty our hose looks. "Do you live in a junk yard?" something like that. I left the comment up.

I have such a small viewing public, that no one waists time on comments. By default anyone with a YouTube login can comment on your videos. You may have to play with this setting to find out what works for you. There are a lot of assholes on YouTube who hang out and try to get a rise out of people at any cost. They are called trolls. They are to be treated accordingly.


YouTubers are extroverts, even if they may not be extroverted face to face. They are self centered, self absorbed, look-at-me kind of people who just might be happy. They are not all nice or friendly. They are not all interesting. They are not all funny. They have not invited you in to their lives. They do deserve privacy.


Videos you shoot can be used as evidence in a court of law.


One of my coworkers has a G1 phone like mine at work. He has had no signal since yesterday at around quitting time. He has done all the tricks like resetting the SIM card and battery. He asked me about it because I had reported a problem with min in the past. My issue was the GPS antenna coming off the back of the phone (under the back cover). His issue sounds more like a transmitter or antenna problem. He can still get wireless. I told him to call T-Mobile and make sure they didn't switch off his phone thinking it was someone else's number by mistake.

I just happened to stop last night in a T-Mobile store and look at some of the new phones. Every other phone is an Android based system. They all look a bit different. They all have their own gimmick to sell that phone over the other guys.

Basically you have some trends. Big screen for a phone. Small, screen, but fits in a pocket with smoothed edges. Those are all one piece, but you also have phones with physical keyboard, but they are thicker.

They all run the same OS. What keeps people from just buying the cheapest one? The answer is not much. They all seem to cost the same amount at the moment. At some point someone is going to come out with a discount version of an Android phone. Then you will get a price war.

Do not get a G1. They suck.


Half a million government jobs in Cuba will be eliminated. Doesn't every one work for the government in Cuba? I'm not sure how that works. Someone mentioned 85% of employed people work for the government in Cuba. Apparently many people draw a salary from the government without really doing anything. These people are expected to go out and get a job or start a small business. There will be a payroll tax and a sales tax / VAT tax started up as well. But they are not capitalists!

"They are treating me like a dog." Whatever the actual quite is. Shut up you thin skinned wuss. You are still dishing out worse on Bush. Give me a break.

The last couple of days I've forgotten to send the notes I take at work for the blog home. I jot down ideas and notes that come to mind while I work and send them to myself to complete at home. It amazes me to figure out how much I depend on these notes to get anything written down for the blog.

Watter Hammer: Have you ever turned off the water in an old house with old fixtures and heard a thump or a bong comes out of the wall? This is called watter hammer. Someone asked why you would choose a ball valve over a butterfly valve if ball valves are so much more expensive. That spike in pressure can cause real damage in systems where you are talking very high pressure or strange materials or huge pipes. That bong might just be enough to push the limits of the seals. There are cases where a 36 inch pipe has jumped out of it's shoe (the thing holding it up) and flopped around like a tentacle all due to temperature changes.

Today's IT philosophy

Some days you are the guy standing on the mine. Some days you are the guy pulling the rope.

What is witnessed while running wire under people's desks stays under the desks.

Wireless traffic always ends up on a wire at some point.

Yellow wire road

Yesterday we had yellow network wires running all over the place. We ended up replacing a wall plug. The wires were to bypass the bad spot and let people get back to work. It is fortunate that the wire in the ceiling didn't need to be replaced. That could have been a weekend kind of thing.

There was one funny thing about the whole mess. My shirt matched the wires. I was warring a bright yellow Pittsburgh shirt and the wires I was using were bright yellow. They were very easy to see as people walked down the hall. So was I.

This ate up half a day for me and nearly that for a couple other people. When thing go wrong with the network, it takes a huge effort to get things back to a working state.


Every other story on NPR is how bad the economy is. People can't find work. People can't find enough work. People can't get enough hours. People can't afford to leave home. People have to live two families to a home. People have to live with four roommates to make ends meet. It is very frightening.

I love the quote (from memory) "Things we buy in New York and LA are made from products right here in Tennessee." NPR goes to Tennessee to find people who are suffering. It guess it is not a depression until people in New York and Los Angeles are affected. Have I mentioned how frigging sick I am of mainstream media thinking "the rest of the U. S." exists to support New York and Southern California? Surely, I have.

Wealth, influence and paranoia

Post industrial: Don't make anything. Base a society and an economy on information and knowledge.

Knowledge must be made valuable. The only way to make something valuable is to make it hard to get. If diamonds were lying around on the ground like pebbles, it would be worthless.

In the west, the birth rate is below 1.5. China is rethinking it's one child policy because the birth rate is dropping below 1.7. The west is doomed. This does not make China a good place or a good government. This does not make China better than the west. It is just a fact. Wonder no more why we have no border on this country. We need the population increase or we will die out as a nation.

Somebody has to do the work. Someone has to clean the toilets. Someone has to mow the grass. Someone has to build things. If no one lifts a hammer, nothing gets built. By flooding the market with people who are not on the books and are willing to work for much less than people who are on the books and must pay taxes, you drop the bottom out of the market for such jobs. This action drives people who are on the books to intellectual level jobs.

Patents, copyright, lawsuits, law enforcement, credit, land ownership, cash, it is all a stack of promises. Our government can step in and with the wave of a pen, take it all away.

How many people do I know who have an escape plan? Where are you going to go? Unless you plan on defecting to another planet, they will come after you and find you.

Many people think they are on the elite list. I have news, you are on the same lists with the rest of us. No one you know will find themselves free on the other side of the bad day. Think about it. You had power and influence. You are the last people to be trusted. The survivors will be the sheep, police, medical, farmers, most of the military and other fields one needs to maintain a society. I weep for marketing executives and beauticians. I'm not sure if IT people will seem handy after this bad day of transition.

It will not be a single day. The transition will happen right in front of your eyes. People will suffer greatly. Change always brings or pleasure. We as a society will be nickeled and dimmed for money and freedom until only the strong of will have any say in their own lives.

Who's plan is this anyway? Who wields that kind of power over multiple countries and so many people? Follow the money. Banks. Sovereign funds. The U. S. owes future generations more money than exists in the world. If the bad day is close enough why not run up the credit card? I'm not on the correct side of the line. When it all falls down, I'll be on the ground, still.



The next Harry Potter movie was retrodimentioned. It was shot in standard 2d and then defiled by the attempted addition of a dimensions via computer animation and fiddling.

A lot of podcasts, particularly those from folks who have full time jobs, have cut down the number of shows per period of time, added people to the podcast, vanished, or become terrible.

"We have the audacity to not believe in hope now." Heard on NPR. I keep going back and forth on whether or not the Republicans are going to take a bunch of seats in Congress and maybe even the Sennett in some weeks. Hearing liberal towers of the party line like NPR utter things like the previous statement make me feel volatile, but do not convince me one way or the other. I'm just more uppity on the subject, not more convinced on a direction.

Law And Order is 20 years old.


I'm not a big football fan. Neither is my family. Here is some proof.

Yesterday, we went over to my parent's place to eat some grilled beast. At one point a couple showed up to look at the house. My parent's are thinking of moving out to some land. Sort of a dream of a life time. Not a good time to get in the moving mood really. You can sell a house now, but at a loss. You can buy a house now, but only if you get rid of your old house first. This is the dilemma my parents keep running in to. It is no wonder people keep screaming for first time buyers. They don't have an existing home to dump.

As much as the folks wanted to come over and look at the house, they waited until the game was over. "The game." What game. There was a football game yesterday? I had to ask someone this morning what game it was. Texans vs The Colts. The Texan not only won, but showed some spine. Nice. That is how much I like football. It is about time our local team became a contender. At some point the young woman, probably younger than me, said "Good game today!" I nodded and agreed politely.

The day was great. We really enjoyed ourselves. We lounged around and watched The Lord of the Rings movies on some HD cable channel. We ate apple pie with cool whip, ice cream drumsticks, oh, and stakes and sausage for the main course. An all American afternoon even without football.

Lunch conversation


Nat turned up with Chinese food for lunch this afternoon.

  • Faire.
  • Anniversary planning.
  • Relatives. (all good I assure you)
  • Good Will. (in mug form)
  • Elle's schedule. She is the only one in the family with a life.
  • Darth Vader.
  • My coworkers and my geekyness.


Superman on Laundry Day

I have 16 minutes. I want 30 seconds. This means I need to run the video 32 times fast. Wait a minute. It is easier to go for 16 seconds of video by doubling the play frame rate to 60 and setting the out put to 1 frame per second. This is far too boring for 30 seconds.

If only it were really that quick.


What comes apart goes together again

Canadian army disassembles a jeep and reassembles it in under 4 minutes. I think it is amazing.

The really funny thing here is that I didn't read the title of the video before I watched it. They pulled up and I thought to myself "Why is the exhaust unattached?". Found out in a hurry.

It doesn't look like the 4x4 is hooked up. It comes and goes under it's own power. I think it is a show well performed.

On the street

Los Bruno Fire footage.

This is an on the ground view of the fire from someone who appears to live in the neighborhood.


I so had plans to shoot myself mowing the yard with the Flip. Then making a time lapse out of it. I start coughing last night. The sinus cold has taken up residence in my chest. I mowed regardless. I took like five breaks and drank a ton of water. I sat in the garage in a lawn chair. People drove by and looked at my mower and half mowed lawn and gawked. I just sat there and gawked back, from my bright red chair in the garage in the shade, dripping with sweat, coughing stuff that stained the concreat.

So, I claim illness and heat and slak-jawed gawkers for lack of a time lapse that would have been cool. FAIL


Happy Cat

The most content cat in the universe.

San Bruno fire

From the other side of the bay

They are going to be talking about this one for years. This is what a really bad gas fire looks like. Notice the houses are dwarfed by the flames that must go a couple hundred meters in the air. Look at one of those houses to the left of the flames. Compare that to the size of the flames. Those are not shacks. Those are big fancy California homes.

From a hill

It must have felt like hell fighting that fire.

From a chopper

No ideaz what's up with the audio.

From the ground


Bwanna needs a repeater

They have double barreled shotguns. This is proof that sometimes you need more than two frigging shots to take down the prey.


Luck or Skill?

I'm impressed. That's what this guy does. That is all he does.

Ping vs Facebook

&dquote;Talks broke down.&dquote; I'm just guessing, but here are some of my thoughts why.

Facebook point of view

  • Ping will pay Facebook for access.
  • Ping will be an application of Facebook
  • Facebook will be the front end/entry page for Ping
  • Users comments on Ping will be accessible from non Ping members of Facebook

Ping point of view

  • Ping will be the exclusive music portal on Facebook
  • iTunes will be aloud to sell to any Facebook member via Facebook
  • Facebook will pay Ping for access.

Think I'm close?

Python crash

I ^gasp^ had to reboot my Linux box this morning after running a python script.

Here is the scenario.

I wrote a script in Python that parses a web server log file. We are trying to connect the dots on how people come in to the web page verses where they end up. This is needed by every single company trying to use the internet for marketing and sales. That basically means every one. This is a normal thing for companies to look for.

The log files add up to 7.8 million lines. Each line is about four feet long. The combined size of the logs was something like 3.6 gigabytes. My simple script walks the logs, gathers some basic information about entering the page and where people ended up. It then zippers the two and boils it all down to about [redacted] "hits". These are specific tacks that tell us if we are getting our message out there to people who find our page.

I ran the script. My machine started running slower and slower. I could tell the machine was chugging on memory. The CPU was hardly being used. The comparisons are very simplistic in the script. The script kept running. The machine all but ground to a halt. The script finished. The computer did not come back. I was able to copy the table I needed off the screen and email it to the pertinent people. It took ten times longer, but things worked. Still, I needed to reboot the computer to get my performance back.

The script had walled off a chunk of memory and for some reason, Python was not giving it up. The drive was chugging and the screen was drawing point by point. This kind of thing happens all the time on Windows. I'm not used to seeing it on Linux. I was able to recover and reboot without a real crash. I didn't loose any data. It was "my" script that brought it to it's knees.

I did not design the script at first to be memory friendly. It was not difficult to change the script to act a bit better on this front. After rebooting and running again, the machine did not even feel it.

One Small Step for Google

I only have one problem with Google's new instant search clap-trap. They are doing it to make it easier to get to the most likely site on mobile devices and devices with shitty keyboards like the iPad. That's great. I don't care except for one thing. The standard Google front page is still there. The text entry point is in the middle of the page more or less. The instant you hit a character the text field jumps to the top of the page. this is fine for people sitting back from the page because it is just a minor movement of the eyeball. For me, I have to sit up straighter and move my entire upper body in order to readjust my view and chaise down the new place where what I am typing is showing up on the screen.

It kind of makes me sick that people at the press conference applauded when this was shown off. It is a necessary predictable step for Google. This is not a leap forward. This is just the next thing. Were the people who applauded paid to be there? Was anyone really impressed? Is this all it takes?

Ping and Yahoo cannot be far behind.


There is a new trend to make computers praise users for doing their job. This is disparaging to me. People need the manipulation in order to just exist. It makes me ill. This is a symptom of the establishment addicting our children to constant positive reinforcement. Any addiction makes you easier to control. Praise for nothing in particular is a cheap way to lead the children like a donkey following a carrot on a stick.

have you heard about the Koran burning thing? How could you have missed it? Where are all the constitutional amendments limiting offensive speech? Aren't the people in the current administration and legislature properly outraged? We can't allow one group to make a statement or say anything that offends another group. Especially when we are at war with part of one of those groups and do not want the rest of that group to sign on to the war against us. I mean come on!!!

Guess what, I'm human. I transmitted over the company PA for about ten minutes or so today. Someone tracked me down and I was able to kill the connection after a couple tries. There is a problem. I talk to myself. I asked two people how bad I was at this weak moment. All they said they heard was some coughing. I can live with that.

Ebonics or Black English is a dialect as far as the DEA is concerned. They are hiring translators for wire taps.


Timelaps woes

Forget all the things I said in the other blog entry. I had to mess with the numbers because of the limitations of the software I'm using. It is called AVIdemux. I do not recommend it. It is just the only one I can get to do resampling of frame rates. Yes, yes, I know there are 50 better programs for this. This is the one available and running for me at this time. The idea is about the same though. If you don't have a button that says something like "Turn this video in to a time lapse." Then you have to play with the numbers until you get what you want.

Basically, I want to take 108,000 frames, select 900 or so frames, then make them play at 30 frames per second. Easy as pie. Now, imagine making a pie with the wrong kind of pan, no mixing bowls, measuring devices that start at a gallon, open flame only, and only your hands for implements. Lets get started.

The frame rate I am working with is 30 frames per second.

1 sec : 30 frames
1 min : 1800 frames
1 hour : 108,000 frames

It is very important to remember that there are two frame rates. Input and output. The frame rate under Video -> Frame Rate affects the input frame rate. That is the frame rate the clip you drag and drop in to the clip window is read at. The frame rate under filters affects the output file. That is the frame rate all players will play the finished product at once it is made. We will play these two against each other to trick the software in to making a time lapse movie by double running the video through the software.


  • Open your hour long video
  • Click Filter below Video. This software requires you to re-render the video in order to filter it in any way. POS!
  • Scroll down to "Re????? FPS", highlight it and click the plus sign at the bottom of the window.
  • Set the frame rate to 1 frame per second. Note, this will still give you something like 4000 frames. Too long for me. This software will only go down to 1 frame per second. POS! Click OK after adding the filter.
  • Go to video menu and set Frame Rate to 90 (3 times normal rate) or 120 (4 times normal rate) fps to make the input play faster than it would normally in order to shrink the number of frames further. The max is 200 FPS in this software. POS!
  • Render the temporary video and note the number of frames that it calculates. The number should line up as per the table above.
  • Once you have rendered the temp video, open that video in the software and set everything to copy under video and audio. I typically mute the audio on time lapse videos. Under the video menu set the frame rate to 30 fps.
  • Render the final video.

Or you can find that magic piece of open source software that has a button for this, that works in Linux. I'm not holding my breath, but it might be out there.

Or you can use any number of Windows and Mac video editing software packages that have a button for this sort of thing.

Or you can buy the $2.50 Android app that makes a time lapse from your phone's camera with a couple clicks.

Or your video camera might have a function that does it for you.

I love Linux.


All those people who have put a DVR set top box in your home are scared according to the Geek News Central. They are scared of online TV, TVs with built in apps, cheap on demand services, NetFlix, hulu et. al., and just about every other damn thing that threatens the existing model. Who says it is just the DVD on the way out?

Duke Nukem Forever was originally announced in 1998, 13 years ago. It is a bit late.


Oshkosh Zombie Walk 2010

This walk was to benefit something. I have some friends in there somewhere. Looks like fun.


I shot my first time lapse today. Well, I shot my first video that I will attempt to make in to a time lapse. It was just of rain outside my office window. I'll attempt to put it to some of that free music that I ran across yesterday. Time lapse need music I think.

Made it to work this morning without getting rained on. Considering the looks of the sky at the time, it was miraculous.

Set up my first new user last Friday. Got to watch them long in this morning. Something very satisfying about that.

Lunch kind of sucked today. I didn't clock out until every one else was clocking in. That is almost normal. I screwed up the easy-mack and ended up eating mac and cheese soup. I used hot water instead of the microwave so the noodles were kind of crunchy. Fail. Following the directions tomorrow.

Wet Time Lapse

Short and sweet.Taken from the window in my office of a rainy day in West Houston 2010-09-07.

This is my first attempt at a time lapse. I used a Flip HD to record 50 or so minutes of video and used avidemux in Linux to convert it to a time lapse. You better like it because it took all evening to figure out the numbers. Music from FreePD

Due to the limitations of my software, I had to first, modify the frame rate in the playback mode. Then set the whole thing to one frame per second for the render. then resample the rendered file at 30 frames per second. ... Never mind. It is done and I can do it again if need be. I just need a video camera that takes a video longer than one hour.

Every other platform has a button you hit that says something like "Make Time Lapse". Not Linux. Nothing works as it should in Linux. You have to do -gasp- math in Linux to get what you want. I did it dammit. I'm so proud of myself, I could just slam a NyQuil and hit the sack.


Video to time lapse in Linux

I had the hardest time trying to figure out how to make a straight up time lapse video in Linux. It turns out I can use AVIdemux without much manipulation. Open your video. Goto video and set the frame rate from 30 FPS to say 300 FPS if you want a 10 to 1 ratio of speed. Go down to 10 fps if you want to slow things down in a fake slow motion (high speed camera) effect. If you do something that is not evenly dividable in to or out of 30, use the video filter for frame rate to re-render and smooth the effect instead of just copying. This will make it look a bit better. Remember, you still want the final video to be 30 frames per second, you just want 30 of those frames for every 300 or 600 that were originally shot.

   30 frames in   1 sec
 1800 frames in  60 sec ( 1 min)
18000 frames in 600 sec (10 min)

In order to shrink a 10 minute video to 1 minute or 30 seconds use the following FPS settings.

10 min shrunk to  1 min (1 to 10 ratio)
18000 frames (in 600 sec) / 300 fps = 60 sec
For every 300 frames shot take 30 and make a new video out of them.

10 min shrunk to 30 sec (1 to 20 ratio)
18000 frames (in 600 sec) / 600 fps = 30 sec
For every 600 frames shot take 30 and make a new video out of them.

Note, I do not mention sound. a) I have not figured out sound yet. b) Who wants sound in a timelaps? c) One thing at a frigging time.

Tomorrow I'm going to take my Flip to work and attempt to take a video or two that I can shoot down to a timelaps.

Chinook loading troops

Those hills look offal close to the blades. This is one of those times you just don't have time to look at that beautiful scenery.

found here

CH-47D Chinook Helicopter doing an Aft Wheel Pinnacle Landing in the mountains of Afghanistan to pick up some Operators. Watch how close the Aft blades get to the Hill!
YouTube comment

Free music links, public domain PD music

music that you can use without fear from copyright holders. Perfect for youtube and such. Please let me know if you find out I am incorrect. I will be happy to comply with rights holders. I have not used all these places and I do not pretend to have read all the pertinent information on each site. and -- All music released under Creative Commons Attribution licence and available at no cost. All users may use all music for free, and legally. -- All music explicitly released into the public domain by the authors/performers and free for use by anyone for any purpose, even without attribution.

I stumbled across some good music on incompetech.con. It doesn't even sound like free junk music either. Found one that would be perfect for a storm time lapse. It is called "At Rest". Can't wait to try it out.

Snoop Chopper

Parrot iPod-Controlled Quadricopter Launches This Week
"Remote-controlled helicopters are not new, but Parrot's AR.Drone Quadricopter is set to make a splash when it goes on sale on Sept. 9th. It will use an iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad as a controller, and give a live video feed from two different cameras to the pilot. Each model comes with two hulls, one of them for indoor use, with protective loops around the rotors. The device creates its own Wi-Fi network, which the iOS device connects to in order to control the Quadricopter."

You get the idea. I want one of these to spy on my neighbors and the boom boom people next door. Is that in the product description? I want the device to go where I cannot, over high fences and scan from roof top level the things that people behind those high fences do not want me to see. I want to use it to enforce zoning laws and and to make sure I know who's car is parked next door.

Someone buy one of these, or a better model that comes out next year and learn how to fly it. Then, learn how to hook it up to a laptop and extend the range. Then we need one that will carry a payload. Oh, wait. Here we go.

IF the police can use them, I want the right to use them.

She has the right idea. Lousy video quality in my book, but still, on track.

More along the right idea here. Notice the bad wavy video. That is vibration talking. We will need to add stabilization to the list of requirements.

Note to people who are making RC videos. If all you are going to hear is "EEIIEEIIEEIIEEIIRRRREEIIEEIIEEIIEEII!!!!!" please dub the sound.


This guy seems to have his shit together on the subject.


sick tired and broke

I'm in a terrible mood. I am sick. I have to do bills yet. We son't have enough money to pay all the bills.

Nat is making a pumpkin pie. Bliss I suppose. Not sure how that works.

My computer is over heating. No money to replace it. Blew it out with the compressed air thing. Need more of that as well.

House is messed up. No opportunity to fix it.

Tired. Can't sleep for choking on mucus. No good drugs for sleeping any more.

The latest books from the Texas Library for the Blind sucks beyond comprehension. I could write better than this dribble.

Work is nuts. I don't have to go in tomorrow, yet all I can think about is work and problems.

Could have gone swimming today, but too sick.

Weather was nice. No money or will to go out and enjoy it.



Khan Academy

The above screen shot is from the intro to what the Khan Academy has available. I learned quite a bit just by watching this intro video.

  • I had a suspension that everything in math started with 2+2=4. =]
  • The gateway to higher math is Algebra.
  • Physics is kind of sort of on the same level as precalculus.
  • I always thought diferental equasions was calcula III.

so, I've learned something and have not even watched any of the videos yet. That is a good sign. I've done gometry and trig. I wander if I have what it takes to to physics at a high school level?

Like so many entrepreneurial epiphanies, Khan's came by accident. Born and raised in New Orleans -- the son of immigrants from India and what's now Bangladesh -- Khan was long an academic star. With his MBA from Harvard, he has three degrees from MIT: a BS in math and a BS and a master's in electrical engineering and computer science. He also was the president of his MIT class and did volunteer teaching in nearby Brookline for talented children, as well as developed software to teach children with ADHD. What he doesn't know he picks up from endless reading and cogitation: His gift, like that of many teachers, is being able to reduce the complex. "Part of the beauty of what he does is his consistency," says Gates. Of Khan's capacity to teach, Gates, who says he spends considerable time trying to help his three kids learn the basics of math and science, tells Fortune, "I kind of envy him."
Distance learning and correspondence courses have been around since the invention of mail. And private, for-profit schools flourish; the University of Phoenix has half a million students enrolled, most of them online. Other private operations, like the Teaching Co., specialize in amalgamating "great courses" from nationally known teachers: the 12-hour Game Theory in Life, Business, and Beyond, from one academic star, costs $254.95 on DVD.
What's remarkable about Khan Academy, aside from its nonpareil word of mouth and burgeoning growth, is that it's free and prizes brevity. Remember your mumbling macroeconomics teacher whose 50-minute monologue in a large auditorium could bore the dead? That isn't Khan. He rarely cracks wise -- if you want shtick, check out Darth Vader trying to teach Euclidean geometry on YouTube ("The Pythagorean theorem is your destiny!") -- but in less than 15 minutes Khan gets to the essence of the topics he's carved out.

Bill Gates is on board.

The article goes on to talk about people who criticize Khan. The best they can do is say that the academy is more like a reference library than a teaching tool. There is no interaction. I hate to tell them, but that is better than I got out of most of my teachers and professors.