Wed. April 25, 2018 – another beautiful day

62F and damp with blue skies and a gentle breeze… gonna be a nice day.

Houstonians learn to embrace days like this as the only really NICE days of the year. I hope we have another long spring, I’ve got lots to do.

I had to file a claim with UPS for a lost package last week. First time for that. USPS has lost Priority Mail, but when they lose it, it’s because it never makes it into the system. UPS showed the package got to the local depot, but never made it out of there.

The process was pretty painless, and I got a call from a human to correct an error in the paperwork (which was pre-filled online.) Check came yesterday. Luckily I had additional units of this item and could send another to the customer. That is one risk if buying from an ebay seller. The item may be a one off and if lost or damaged, the seller might not have another.

n

added- yesterday’s visits spiked to 3x normal at ~6500

Author: Nick Flandrey

Mid 50s, stay at home dad, with two elementary school age girls. Love my family and my life.

61 thoughts on “Wed. April 25, 2018 – another beautiful day”

  1. I read or scan the comments each day. Keeping a daily journal going is hard work. Bob was very opinionated to say the least and liked to poke the bee’s nest just to get things stirred up.
    Nick, great job for keeping his journal going. Your life is different from Bob’s thus the journal now reflects your style as the captain. If you go back to old journal posts Bob also changed tone and direction many times over the years based on what was going on with us. Prepping became his passion as we prepared and then moved to Sparta.
    And, a big thank to Rick for all his support and hard work to keep things up and running.

  2. Bob was very unpredictable, and I often couldn’t tell when he was serious and when he was joking. I took it as a compliment when *he* couldn’t tell when I was serious and when I was joking, although I rarely did it deliberately.

  3. Do you think someone at UPS lifted your item, or just binned it by accident?

  4. Regarding images – I’m not a fan but don’t care that much.

    I skim the site most days. Most days I don’t have anything new to contribute.
    I value this site, a lot, and think Nick has maintained the intent and feel of RBTs work. Of course it’s a bit different. Frankly it would be creepy, as though Nick had donned an RBT skin suit, if it hadn’t shifted a bit.

    The humor is dark. That is fine. Given the state of the world and that large sucking sound as we circle the drain, how could it not be? Humor is how humans deal with bad stuff they can’t change.

    Re: Social / Emotional Intelligence and indoctrination in public school. When we were searching for a school for our Kindergartener we visited a LOT of schools, public and private. All of them indoctrinate your child, one aspect of that is the Social / Emotional stuff. The public schools are in your face and have wishy-washy pablum about feeeelingz and mindfuuulnezzz. The religious schools reach straight for behave or you’ll burn in hell. On the whole, we found the religious schools to be more honest about what they planned to teach your kid and upfront about their indoctrination. The public schools were a bunch of lying liars who talked out the side of their mouth.

    It was a no brainer to go with a religious school. We supplement her learning and talk about dinosaurs. As she grows up we will use RBTs kits to ensure her science is strong.

    She gets three recesses a day, reading, writing, arithmetic, and a set of social mores which will set her on the path to being a decent thoughtful humor who won’t be crushed by a Southpark joke or idle comment.

    I’m traveling for the next week or so. In Portland for the Cardigan Welsh Corgi National Specialty. Met an absolutely stunning red and white Cardigan bitch imported from New Zealand. Fantastic structure and lovely temperament. Watched the sheep herding, learned some new approaches to handling stock and realized what I’d been doing wrong with my young dog. Evaluated about two dozen dogs for their AKC CGC / CGCA / CGCU and Trick Dog stuff yesterday. That was a blast. Lots of talented dogs and people. Hoping to meet a few of my dog heroes and their handlers later in the week. After that a couple days with mom in California then home to Alaska. It’s a lot of travel but the two week break from husband and child is much appreciated. I’ve had 5 nights of sleep uninterrupted by child or snoring or barking.

    @nick
    I’ll try to put together some posts. I didn’t find your comment sexist – it’s fine. People are too darn sensitive.

  5. @Jenny – What? Corgis (or is it Corgies?) doing work? The breed that is only supposed to be owned by the “Royals” should not have to stoop so low.

    I really appreciate the sight of a good working/hunting dog, particularly a breed that has been co-opted by the “beautiful people” as a bauble.

    Spring is trying real hard to sprung here. Nights are still getting down to the mid-30s but we hit 81 yesterday afternoon. Some rain is supposed to start Friday afternoon and be relatively heavy Saturday and Sunday. Not the multiple inches that some of you folks get, but in a high desert region like ours a half-inch of rain runs into the rivers/streams/creeks real quick and leads to flooding. Our lawn is lush green and thick.

  6. I had to file a claim with UPS for a lost package last week. First time for that. USPS has lost Priority Mail, but when they lose it, it’s because it never makes it into the system. UPS showed the package got to the local depot, but never made it out of there.

    UPS can be iffy around Austin. A new depot is in the works in Round Rock, however. I’ve never had anything lost, but I swear the back room of their facility near Downtown is staffed by the gorillas who used to work in those American Tourister commercials. Lots of smashed items, especially Amazon’s cr*ppy shipping materials.

    A bent CD?!? Never seen that before!

    Fortunately, the staff at the local UPS Store are great.

  7. 50º and cloudy. I hope to get out for a little while.

    In the meantime, the SCO box is now teats up. I put in a replacement for the failed drive yesterday & told it to “rebuild, and squeal no more.” I’ll know in a few minutes if there’s enough there to salvage. I am hopeful, but not expectant. I just finished “Disk2VHD”. Now on to StarWind V2V converter. But a reboot first.

    I tolds ’em! I tolds ’em and I tolds ’em and I tolds ’em. Did dey lissen? Nope!

  8. In the meantime, the SCO box is now teats up. I put in a replacement for the failed drive yesterday & told it to “rebuild, and squeal no more.” I’ll know in a few minutes if there’s enough there to salvage. I am hopeful, but not expectant. I just finished “Disk2VHD”. Now on to StarWind V2V converter. But a reboot first.

    I tolds ’em! I tolds ’em and I tolds ’em and I tolds ’em. Did dey lissen? Nope!

    Hope it turns out well for you. I’ve been in similar situations a few times. One memorable one was rescuing an Exchange 5.5 server from failing hardware and database corruption. Fun times!

  9. Thanks Barbara!

    @miles, it was basically a 2ft square metal shape, 2inches thick, wrapped in cardboard. Zero value unless it was the fitting you needed. And I shipped TWO to the same address, and one got thru fine. I think they just lost it. It probably slipped down between somethings and will show up when they redo the sort facility.

    @jenny- whatever and whenever you like. I’m VERY aware of the time and effort it takes just to put something off the cuff together…. I’d think that just living in Alaska would have some good prep/homestead/limited resources stories, but I guess if you are in a city, it’s just a city. Working dogs are pretty cool, and I miss the border collies being border collies anecdotes. Dogs have been our partners for a long time now.

    @JimL, I watched our management lose several of the top 5 oil companies as customers because they just wouldn’t listen. Not to me, and not to the customers… If they listen, there isn’t a story to tell though!

    n

  10. In Portland for the Cardigan Welsh Corgi National Specialty. Met an absolutely stunning red and white Cardigan bitch imported from New Zealand.

    We have had a number of Pembroke Welsh Corgis. Our first was a descendant of one of Elizabeth IIs. Great dog, very even emotionally.

    The breed that is only supposed to be owned by the “Royals” should not have to stoop so low.

    Alas, Elizabeth II had to put down Willow, the last descendant she had of her first Corgi, due to cancer. She still has a couple of “dorgis” (dachshund/corgi mix, an accident) and one adult Corgi she was given as a rescue dog.

  11. I mentioned that I would post some links WRT the rooftop solar energy panel scam. Well, here they are, total, completely true exposition of the fraud:

    https://www.pe.com/2018/03/13/new-mexico-attorney-sues-vivint-solar-for-fraud-racketeering/

    http://www.greenbuildingadvisor.com/blogs/dept/green-building-news/california-lenders-sued-over-pace-financing

    https://www.ocregister.com/2018/04/24/states-free-solar-energy-scam-could-cost-your-home/

    Actually, just look at the source: left-wing, ultra liberal, dumbocratic politicians that support and legislate it. Gov. Moonbeam, AlGore, Obamanous,…….. Not one of them demonstrating knowledge of the laws of Thermodynamics. Also, the laws of Unintended Consequences and Diminishing Returns.

  12. In Portland for the Cardigan Welsh Corgi National Specialty. Met an absolutely stunning red and white Cardigan bitch imported from New Zealand.

    Rogue Public House locations are usually dog friendly, but call ahead and check if one is convenient to where you are staying. Highly recommended even if, like us, you are not really into beer.

    Rogue is one of the few things we miss about Portland.

  13. I mentioned that I would post some links WRT the rooftop solar energy panel scam. Well, here they are, total, completely true exposition of the fraud:

    I got a Vivint doosh at the door last week. Aren’t they the rebranded SolarCity?

  14. “Educational Fraud Continues” by Walter E. Williams (read in my Fort Bend Herald this morning)
    http://walterewilliams.com/educational-fraud-continues/

    “Earlier this month, the 2017 National Assessment of Educational Progress, aka The Nation’s Report Card, was released. It’s not a pretty story. Only 37 percent of 12th-graders tested proficient or better in reading, and only 25 percent did so in math. Among black students, only 17 percent tested proficient or better in reading, and just 7 percent reached at least a proficient level in math.”

    “The atrocious NAEP performance is only a fraction of the bad news. Nationally, our high school graduation rate is over 80 percent. That means high school diplomas, which attest that these students can read and compute at a 12th-grade level, are conferred when 63 percent are not proficient in reading and 75 percent are not proficient in math. For blacks, the news is worse. Roughly 75 percent of black students received high school diplomas attesting that they could read and compute at the 12th-grade level. However, 83 percent could not read at that level, and 93 percent could not do math at that level. It’s grossly dishonest for the education establishment and politicians to boast about unprecedented graduation rates when the high school diplomas, for the most part, do not represent academic achievement. At best, they certify attendance.”

    “Fraudulent high school diplomas aren’t the worst part of the fraud. Some of the greatest fraud occurs at the higher education levels — colleges and universities. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 70 percent of white high school graduates in 2016 enrolled in college, and 58 percent of black high school graduates enrolled in college. Here are my questions to you: If only 37 percent of white high school graduates test as college-ready, how come colleges are admitting 70 percent of them? And if roughly 17 percent of black high school graduates test as college-ready, how come colleges are admitting 58 percent of them?”

    Read his column and weep. We, the USA, were once spectacular in educating the unwashed masses. And when 70% of white high school graduates go to college, very few go to a real college. Most are going to 13th and 14th grades.

  15. I got a Vivint doosh at the door last week. Aren’t they the rebranded SolarCity?

    I couldn’t find anything on that, not even in Wikipedia.

    I did have SolarCity at my door. They refused a contract whereby I would be guaranteed 20% saving of current electric bill with 100% certainty. I would not agree to be a subject of fraud. That is, if my monthly kw-hr consumption would be billed $100 by current electric utility, I would pay them $80. Was that too simple? How could they cheat me on that deal?

  16. Read his column and weep. We, the USA, were once spectacular in educating the unwashed masses. And when 70% of white high school graduates go to college, very few go to a real college. Most are going to 13th and 14th grades.

    I gave up on pursuing a PhD for now. I saw too much cheating at the undergraduate level in CS at the two mid-tier state schools where I did grad school, and, after conducting a couple of interviews at the new gig, I’m starting to wonder about UT.

    Let me reiterate — *in CS*. And you don’t even want to know what I saw at the Masters level at Texas State. I don’t think “diploma mill” is too strong of a term to describe the situation in my opinion.

  17. Alas, Elizabeth II had to put down Willow, the last descendant she had of her first Corgi, due to cancer. She still has a couple of “dorgis” (dachshund/corgi mix, an accident) and one adult Corgi she was given as a rescue dog.

    The wife took our 15.4 year old British Cocker Spaniel, Lady, to the vets yesterday for a haircut. This is the first haircut since last October and they did a great job as usual. But, Lady bit the groomer several years ago and now has to be lightly sedated. Especially since they removed about six inches of hair and it was matted (she does not like baths either).

    One good piece of news was that for first time in several years, Lady did not lose weight. She is at 26 lbs still. Way down from her peak of 38 lbs about five years ago (yes, she was a roly-poly then). Our canned chicken (Sam’s Club) and Vienna Sausage diet is working. As a bonus, the cat really likes the excess chicken broth. We supplement as we can with turkey sausage, sliced turkey lunch meat, some vegetables, etc.

    The hair removal has displayed my suspicions. Her back spine is now curving and the back legs are hard for her to straighten out to walk properly. She is still having trouble with the sedation this morning which is unusual for her. The back legs are crossing each other as she walks which I hope gets better today as the sedation works its way out of her system. She is falling every three to ten steps, especially on surface transitions and elevations. The wood and tile floors are really slippery for her which was hoping would get better with them trimming the excess hair off her paws. This will probably be her last grooming as I doubt that she will survive another. Usually we get her groomed about every three months which we had delayed as long as we could this time.

  18. “Microsoft is making another Windows variant: Windows 10 Lean”
    http://www.osnews.com/story/30288/Microsoft_is_making_another_Windows_variant_Windows_10_Lean

    “Windows 10 Lean appears to live up to its name: an installation is about 2GB smaller than Windows 10 Pro, and it is missing a bunch of things, such as desktop wallpaper, Registry Editor, the MMC management console, and more. Lucan reports that Lean does not seem to apply the same restrictions as S Mode, and as such it is capable of running both Universal Windows Programs from the Store and traditional Win32 applications.”

    So now we have Windows 10 S, Lean, Home, and Pro. This is getting weird.

  19. So now we have Windows 10 S, Lean, Home, and Pro. This is getting weird.

    Windows 10 “Lean”? Isn’t that Windows 7? 🙂

    Corporations are probably giving Microsoft grief about ending support for Windows 7 and 8 on newer Intel generations starting with Kaby Lake. They also cut off AMD Ryzen/AM4, but big companies generally don’t play with AMD.

    With my kids’ Windows 7 box, running on a Ryzen 5, I’ve noticed that Microsoft has still not patched the hole which allows the system to run and receive upgrades. Things that make you say “hmmmm”.

  20. There are two breeds that have Corgi in the name. Corgi means cur, or sometimes dwarf dog.

    The queen has Pembroke Welsh Corgis which come from the southern lowlands of Wales. They are typically smaller and lighter boned, with bob or docked tails. Colors are red and white, sable, tri. Small pointy ears, straight fronts. Their genetic background is the Spitz / Finnish breeds. They tend to be high energy and (in my opinion) a bit yappy. They also have become victims of their own popularity and there are more poorly bred than thoughtfully bred Pembrokes.

    I have Cardigan Welsh Corgis. Until recently nearly unknown. North mountainous Wakes, poor farmers with cattle. Share genetics with Dachsubds and German Shepherds. Truly a large dog in a short package. They’ve got deep chests for big lungs and heart, heavier bone, comically large ears with a rounded tip. Their tail is a point of pride. Truly do everything dogs. Cattle, sheep, ratting, minding the children, guard dog. Deceptively fleet. Best of all they understand the co Dept of “chill out”.
    Cardigans come in every color of the rainbow but the official colors are brindle, black and white, blue Merle, red and white, and perhaps a few others.

    Both are lovely breeds. The Cardigan breeders for the most part are fiercely protective of the breed and go to great lengths to improve the breed and stay true to the written standard. We police ourselves pretty well.

    The Cardigans are great working dogs. Many of the dogs I’m seeing in the ‘beauty show’, AKA Conformation, ring were also entered in the herding trial. I’ve put herding titles on 5 or 6 Cardigans, and have started on sheep quite a few more. There is not a split as seen in other breeds between the working lines and show lines.
    Cardigans work stock. It’s their nature.

  21. Well, we have something.

    The virtualized backup server will run and I was able to assign an IP address matching the old server. Backup of all user data as of 4 am was on the old hardware box, so we were able to copy all of that over.

    No user accounts available, so I am manually adding those accounts back in with the scoadmin tool. In the middle of the list, I tried one out (and entered a valid password) and get an error running the menu. So Tom is working on fixing that security.

    The shipping guys have stacks of paperwork already from the 6 hours of downtime. I haven’t told the one yet that all of the morning work will have to be redone.

    And I have an opening again. Reboots about done, so back to the grind.

  22. Our problems with higher education in Europe seem to be milder than what the US has. Still, Bachelor’s degrees are worth a lot less than they used to be, so now everyone wants to go for a Masters. Which means that every college and university is putting together Masters programs. They are good money spinners, so you don’t want to fail too many students, so…they are largely worthless.

    I have specifically avoided teaching in the Masters offered by my department. I’ve had to sit as a second examiner a few times, and whenever I say “fail”, the other instructor looks at me strangely, and passes the student anyway. Where I am in the Bachelors, I am free to fail students, and regularly do. Not because I’m evil, but because I expect competence in the material. In the masters, apparently that’s not acceptable. So what value does it really have, if it’s so watered down that no one can fail?

    @Greg: All that said, a graduate degree can still be worthwhile. You, as a student, just have to make it so. Even if the instructors let people pass who shouldn’t, if it’s a good school then the instructors have knowledge to pass on. Make sure you get it. Spend extra time and effort. Ask questions. Ask for extra work. Meet the instructors outside of class. Speaking for myself, I am almost always willing to offer extra time and attention to good students.

    Of course, it depends on what you want to do. A PhD isn’t really all that marketable. It’s a prerequisite for academia, but otherwise it’s just a pretty piece of paper on the wall..

  23. Make sure you get it. Spend extra time and effort.

    I got something out of the programs I attended. And the Masters reset my career clock so companies would overlook the employment gap from my four year sentence -er- tenure in the Northwest US.

    Ironically, I think I received far more benefit, including landing my current job, from a year-long C++ certificate program I took online from University of Washington. Academic standards were “professional development” — in other words “Please don’t cheat”.

  24. Well, we have something.

    The virtualized backup server will run and I was able to assign an IP address matching the old server. Backup of all user data as of 4 am was on the old hardware box, so we were able to copy all of that over.

    Sounds like you are living the dream…

  25. Anyone done one of those DNA tests for genealogy? AncestryDNA or 23andMe or the like? Thoughts?

    Father-in-Law sent me one as a gift. My conspiracy theory alter ego thinks its all a ploy by somebody to catalog everyone. 🙂

  26. Aaaand we’re back. Only about a dozen service requests in the queue. I’ll get the ones I can before I leave. Routing, file corruption, account lockouts, all of them are jumping up to bite me. But they’re functioning.

    So yes, Virginia, there is a way to virtualize a SCO box. I’ll be writing it up for the next poor bastage that has to deal with something not of his choosing that is feeding 60 families.

  27. @Chad – nope. Never will. Frankly, I’m happy with who & what I am. The stuff that’s a mystery will remain a mystery to me.

  28. I’ve been with 23andMe for years. They predicted I’d be “photo-sensitive and sneezy” which I am. I’m also 100% Euro-Tr**h, mostly German and French. They keep adding research and notify me if my DNA brushes against anything new. I occasionally get a “relative” request which I ignore. I also have less back hair because I have 262 Neanderthal variants, which is 72% less than all 23andMe customers. lol!

  29. BTW, my DNA is still in an unknown military location since I never asked for it to be destroyed when I retired from the Army. The jerks probably wouldn’t destroy it anyway.

  30. WRT solar. Yes, there are bad actors and scams out there, especially the lease deals. That said, we had a very different experience. We put 34 panels on our roof many years ago when it was considerably more expensive to do so, as we were unavoidably using a lot of electricity and paying 3rd and sometimes 4th tier rates. It took about the estimated 7 years to pay for themselves in reduced costs. Our first year the true up with PG&E was ~$243 for the year. We enjoyed a few more years after they were paid for before we moved, and with personal adjustments in our electrical useage patterns the true up for our last year there was less than a dollar for the year. We were an extrodinary case and I did not recommend going solar to any of our friends at the time. Prices have come down enough that I think it is a viable consideration for regular users as well now, but researvch the buy back policies of your local electricity provider, they vary.

  31. The public schools in large city, disadvantaged, underprivileged areas are in total collapse. OTOH, the administrations will not admit to this and cannot concede that it is impossible of them to rectify.

  32. From Paul:

    Prices have come down enough that I think it is a viable consideration for regular users as well now, but researvch the buy back policies of your local electricity provider, they vary.

    OK, here is the contract that I offered to three of those at my front door. It was rejected by all. Of course, it is a “no lose” for me with 0% uncertainty.

    ROOFTOP SOLAR PANEL CONTRACT (0% Homeowner Uncertainty & 20% Saving)

    Paragraph 1
    Solar Panel Company (SPC) retains ownership of everything installed; homeowner buys nothing. (As such, SPC may apply for any available tax write-offs or rebates.)

    Paragraph 2
    SPC replaces homeowner as the consumer, or customer, of the local electrical utility company (LEUC) for the subject residence. (Consequently, electricity is bought from or sold to the LEUC.)

    Paragraph 3
    SPC disconnects the current electric meter outlet wires from the household electrical system. SPC installs a new meter and connects its outlet wires to the household electrical system and its inlet wires to the outlet wires of the LEUC meter. SPC splices the wires from its installed equipment into wires connecting the two meters. (As such, the SPC sells electricity to both the homeowner during periods of sunshine and buys it from the LEUC at other times for resale to the homeowner.) Monthly, the homeowner determines consumption via the new meter, and using LEUC cost factors, calculates the cost if that amount was purchased from them. Homeowner remits 80% of that LEUC cost to the SPC monthly.

    After all, I believe in our Capitalistic, Free Enterprise system where manufacturers and sellers take the business risks instead of the consumers. How silly of me is that?

  33. @lynn said:

    But, Lady bit the groomer several years ago and now has to be lightly sedated.

    Was the sedation done by a Veterinarian, or at the least a Licensed Vet Tech?
    I am sorry if it was not, you have put Lady in a dangerous/compromising situation. Animal sedation is very tricky, especially in the young and old.

  34. @Chad – nope. Never will. Frankly, I’m happy with who & what I am. The stuff that’s a mystery will remain a mystery to me.

    Yep. It would be interesting but other than possible medical issues, I don’t see much point. Granmama, the only grand parent I met, was Scot/Irish from Louisiana. Her husband was German Jew. Dunno if he came from Germany or not, just that Granmama kept a kosher kitchen for him. I could try asking my mom but she’s mostly gone mentally.

    On my dad’s side, German, from Wisconsin, he was 3rd or 4th generation. Where in what became Germany is unknown to me. He had siblings, I never met any of them and I suspect that since dad died in 2010, they have also.

    I never thought to ask anyone about any of it forty years ago.

  35. @CowboySlim – WRT 23andMe, did you just purchase the basic package or go for one or more of the up-sells?

    The “updates”, are they part of your original package, or, again, another up-sell?

    I don’t mean to sound redundant, but all these DNA “services” seem to give the hard-sell to the up-sell, claiming that that is the only way you will get some really useful information.

    I have a friend who used Ancestry and is constantly badgered by them to pay more for more and updated information.

    They almost sound like ClassMates.com (started 1994, an original social network that blew it) that is constantly telling me that someone from my high school class looked at my “profile”, but if I want to know who it is I have to “join” and pay a fee every month. BTW, I am amazed at the number of fakers who claim to have attended my high school when I did. I have 6 years of Year Books (1 before and 1 after my 4 years) so it is easy to call out the fakes.

  36. Was the sedation done by a Veterinarian, or at the least a Licensed Vet Tech?
    I am sorry if it was not, you have put Lady in a dangerous/compromising situation. Animal sedation is very tricky, especially in the young and old.

    I don’t know. The groomer is at our vet of ~25 years. The vet is around 70. His junior vet is around 40. The groomer is around 60. They have all been doing this a long time. And they have told us (made the wife sign a release) that even light sedation is dangerous. This is probably the 14th or 15th time that they have sedated Lady for grooming.

    The groomer used to trim Lady with just a muzzle on her. But then Lady learned how to shake the muzzle and bit the groomer.

    The problems that Lady is having are not directly related to the sedation. Her hips have been disintegrating for quite a while now. The sedation is just making her weak. She has been falling a lot lately, especially on slick floors and elevation changes. Instead of stepping down from the back door threshold, she still jumps it as if she was just 10 or 12 years old. Half of the time, she lands and rolls to one side. She will shake her head and get up after a few seconds.

  37. I’m playing with my HOST file and re-learning. For Win7 you don’t have to re-boot, just save the file. Nice! You don’t need to un-comment “127.0.0.1 localhost” because that is now built in.

    Looking at HOST files that are out there for the downloading, oy! I don’t go to a lot of the sites listed on purpose. A 3Mb HOST file seems a bit excessive just in case I click and head towards bigtits.ru or the like. (er, I made that URL up.)

    I have AdBlockPlus. It works well for me.

    I added the DuckDuckGo Privacy add-on for FireFox a few days ago. I have no idea if it really blocks all of the trackers. But so far, I’ve added 10 lines to my stock HOST file which beats the hell outta one that would take 30+ pages if printed.

    I don’t accept 3rd party cookies. Except for a few, all cookies are deleted when I shut the browser. Flash is set to “ask” before saving a site but that setting is sketchy.

    Now, if the Ubiquiti router I bought had not been zapped by lighting (just out of warranty) I’d would have by now figured how to have the HOST file in my router. I’m not any kind of smart with Linux type stuff. I need to buy another Ubiquiti router. Some day.

  38. Mr. DadCooks, I guess that is for me. I got the 23andMe kit years back on a $99 referral through Lifehacker.com. 23andMe used to charge $5/mo for updates, but that dropped when they went through their lawsuit with the Feds some time back. No more monthly charges, but they are asking me to complete online surveys to update their DB’s. I have passed on most of them.

  39. Re: DNA testing…

    In the news today – a 72 yrold guy was caught as the “East Side Rapist” in Sacramento on DNA. His crimes occurred mostly about 40 years ago, and no clues until a DNA match caught him.

    http://www.sacbee.com/news/article209779364.html

    So, if there is anything shady in one’s past, volunteering DNA is not a good idea. No word yet on how they got the DNA sample that matched old evidence.

  40. @lynn – you made a very good choice using the groomer at your Veterinarian. Having a senior pet is challenging and heartbreaking at times. Do take heart in that I firmly believe they know we are doing our best for them. Enjoy every day.

    I have heard too many horror stories of dogs, cats, and rabbits dying at groomers, some associated with the national chain pet stores, who just happen to have a Vet Clinic attached. Unfortunately, those Vets seem to be more interested in profit than compassionate care. My opinion, YMMV.

    @MrAtoz – thanks for the followup on 23andMe.

    And @Jenny, I believe I may have given you the impression that I thought your Cardigan Welsh Corgi was the same as the Queen’s. Small potatoes, but important.

  41. Ancestry a year ago. I found my ancestors had little discrimination when producing kids. Percents were:
    British 27
    German 25
    French Canadian 12
    Scandinavian 12
    Eastern European 6
    Irish 4
    Spanish 4
    Greek 4
    Caucasian 2
    Azerbaijan 2
    Jewish 1
    Rest undetermined (hopefully hominid).
    Surprise was no Indian and a Scandinavian instead.
    I think it was worthwhile to get me wondering about some of those lives 150 years ago.

  42. The problems that Lady is having are not directly related to the sedation. Her hips have been disintegrating for quite a while now.

    Yeah… been there with Wilma and her hips failing. One day I got home from work and she just sat and stared at me… like, “hey, it’s time, I hurt too much”.

    I didn’t mind helping her up the stairs. Or holding her up by belly to take the weight off of her legs. She minded. She was proud that way. And then squatting to pee… it hurt to get up.

    She’s been gone since January ’10 and I still miss her. My shadow.

  43. She’s been gone since January ’10 and I still miss her. My shadow.

    Sorry about that. I always blubber like a baby when I lose a dog. I’m sure it’s the same with cat lovers.

  44. Mr. DadCooks, I guess that is for me. I got the 23and…..

    Yes, thanks MrAtoz, that was not me. I guess that Mr. DadCooks had us a little trans-confused.

    I was the one with all the Solar Energy scam, fraud and otherwise……

  45. Bob was very opinionated to say the least

    Er, not that I recall. Contra my norm, I’m not even joking about that.

    The most likely explanation is that I’m opinionated, too, and largely in the same direction. The other explanation, that I’ve been dropped on my head one too many times and suffer from severe CRS, shall not be discussed.

  46. @lynn – you made a very good choice using the groomer at your Veterinarian. Having a senior pet is challenging and heartbreaking at times. Do take heart in that I firmly believe they know we are doing our best for them. Enjoy every day.

    Thanks, my wife chose them. She is way smarter than me and has the advanced degree that I paid for to prove it. We moved away from that vet clinic about 10 years ago to a vet clinic closer to us. After the first grooming, Lady refused to go into the new vet clinic on the subsequent visit. So the wife said ok and took Lady back to the original vet clinic where she bit the groomer. Sigh.

    BTW, even though Lady was feeling groggy last night, we took her on our 1.2 mile walk. She just stayed in her wagon the entire time. She really enjoyed the fresh air. And I need the extra exercise.

    Yeah… been there with Wilma and her hips failing. One day I got home from work and she just sat and stared at me… like, “hey, it’s time, I hurt too much”.

    I am sorry to hear that. I know it was tough.

    I am really hoping that Lady passes away in her sleep before we have to do this. The wife told me this morning that she was looking into wheelchairs for dogs. She found one for sale at $250 and one on youtube that we could make for $25. Sigh.
    https://www.handicappedpets.com/help-pets-walk/

  47. @paul, my experience with ubiquiti products getting killed by lightning is ‘give it a try’ anyway. Do the online claim thing. The worst you will lose is time. I had 2 Nanos replaced free of charge. Takes a while once the claim is processed and you send in the bad stuff, but well worth it. Other than them using non-standard POE, I am very impressed with the product and support.

    WRT DNA testing, my sibling did it, and my parents. The big surprise was no native american. We had family history that strongly suggested an Indian in there somewhere but the test said no. Dad was 97% one thing. Mom was a mix. LOTS of neanderthal… more than something like 70% of testees. I have a friend who got some very puzzling results, his ethnicity being NOT what he was raised to believe, and NOT matching his parents. Awkward indeed. Friend’s wife had a very nifty app that showed the migration of her ancestors as time passes. Really cool to watch people leave, until there are no more, then they moved again, and again…..

    Congrats to JimL for the high level voodoo and invoking. Might want to buy a lottery ticket!

    WRT military DNA, I have it on good authority that if you were in the right MOS, at the right time, you could obscure the true sample… given all the various drugs and vaccinations some of the guys on the more covert side of the street got, I’d be stunned if there wasn’t anything mutagenic in there.

    And yes, what a great way to do what people would fight tooth and nail if demanded of them. Get the punters to VOLUNTEER their DNA. I’m even suspicious of the cord blood donation and registry.

    Google trained their voice recognition and machine translation by offering free 411 service and free searches…..

    FB and piccassa, etc trained their facial recognition with human help on photos uploaded and ‘tagged’. It’s gonna be Minority Report and A Scanner Darkly before too long. China is already starting.

    n

  48. And yes, what a great way to do what people would fight tooth and nail if demanded of them. Get the punters to VOLUNTEER their DNA. I’m even suspicious of the cord blood donation and registry.

    Google trained their voice recognition and machine translation by offering free 411 service and free searches…

    FB and piccassa, etc trained their facial recognition with human help on photos uploaded and ‘tagged’. It’s gonna be Minority Report and A Scanner Darkly before too long. China is already starting.

    OFD, is that you? 😀

  49. @jenny, those corgis are some good looking dogs! If they were a bit more heat tolerant, they’d be very appealing to me, and the kids are getting old enough not to get nipped or to understand if they did. They are about twice the weight of my little guy but not that much bigger so they must be pretty stout.

    n

  50. I’m volunteering at the kids’ school tomorrow, all day, so I’m going to schedule the opening post. If nothing goes up by 815 central, something went wrong…..

    and now off to bed, as 8 hours with 1st and 3rd graders is going to WIPE ME OUT.

    n

  51. I let someone out of moderation, with a note about updating a link, probably in the blogroll? Can’t find the comment now…..
    n

  52. volunteering DNA is not a good idea

    If called into a police facility for questioning, even if it is not about you, do not touch anything with bare skin. Do not open doors, do not touch the table, do not accept a drink of water, do not use a Kleenex but if you do keep it with you when you leave.

    Saga with the IRS continues. They claim my paid work for the company I worked for the IRS say is self employment income and I must pay payroll taxes, I disagree because I retired. IRS also states capital gains in my IRA account were not reported on my return. In an IRA gains are never reported but IRS disagrees on my case because there was a transfer to a different IRA account. So I have demanded a full audit by an agent.

    I suspect this is all revenge done by the IRS agent I reported for speeding and running a red light.

    Which makes me wonder how OFD is fairing with his significant IRS issues. The IRS has blocked his accounts or removed money in the past. With OFD’s current medical condition is he even able to fight back against the IRS.

  53. SCO saga continues. Editing /etc/default/tcp with vi just sucks. But remote sites are once again able to access the software through the vpn.

    Not buying the lottery ticket, though. With my luck, it would be counterfeit. Then I’d get audited.

    Interesting tidbit: The replacement software weighs in at just less than 1% of annual revenue for the division in question (that feeds 60 people + families). Less than 1/2 of 1% of revenue for the entire company, of which all divisions use some piece of it still.

  54. @lynn – those mobility aids for dogs are mainly designed for young animals and require a good deal of training and acclimation to be safe and effective. The wagon is a good choice for this stage of Lady’s life and will not subject Lady to any undue stress.

    Good call on your Wife’s part regarding going back to the original Vet. Less convenient but better for you all and Lady in the long run.

  55. “…8 hours with 1st and 3rd graders is going to WIPE ME OUT.”

    In about 1984 I took my nephew (seven) and niece (five) to the museum for three hours to free up my sister to do some stuff she had to do. I was exhausted after and dozed for the afternoon.

  56. if there is anything shady in one’s past, volunteering DNA is not a good idea.

    That’s the problem with DNA. You don’t have to volunteer DNA. If some close relative of yours does its almost as good. They may not have your DNA on file but they know that the “son of” or “sister of” someone whose DNA is on file is a match and that’s enough for them to track you down. You can’t control everyone your share DNA with. Last I heard AncestryDNA has 7,000,000 people on file already. That’s just one of several DNA analysis services out there and it grows everyday.

  57. I’m volunteering at the kids’ school tomorrow, all day, so I’m going to schedule the opening post. If nothing goes up by 815 central, something went wrong…..

    Hey, thanks for being a good example to the kids and us !

    There is not such thing as quality time, kids are all about quantity time.

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