Wed. July 18, 2018 – things are getting weirder yet…

Almost 80F at 6AM is NOT a good sign for a cool day.

A quick scan of headlines this morning shows things are getting even weirder.

Chicago is broke, and yet they’re talking about Universal Basic Income.

Musk apologized.

And some folks want a civil war very badly.

Ditto for a global war.

Crazy.

n

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39 Responses to Wed. July 18, 2018 – things are getting weirder yet…

  1. dkreck says:

    6am and 80F. 106F yesterday and predicted today. RH very low and the evaporative cooler continues to work well. Avoids turning to the AC and saving hundreds on PG&E bill. Pool at 85F and is worth every penny spent there. Mid to low hundreds predicted for rest of week into next. Air quality sucks due to smoke and usual summer conditions. Low RH not good for the wild fire situations.

    Back to the coast this weekend.

  2. brad says:

    If Chicagoans had any sense, they would lynch their politicians, going back decades. To prevent that, the current crop promises pie-in-the-sky. They just want to rake in all the graft they can and disappear before the end. Plus, they are hoping for a federal bailout, and if they get that, who cares how much they overspend.

    It’s fun, hearing the Texas temps. Glad I don’t live in that climate any longer. Here, we have highs around 85, and lows around 60. No AC needed – just open the windows overnight, and close them during the day. Of course, our Winters are nothing to envy – where we are, anyway, it’s months of overcast, and usually not even much snow to lighten things up.

    I’m spending the day dealing with accumulated computer issues. For example: I’ve had an automatic backup process running for – literally – years. Mid-June, it stopped working, complaining that the mount option “noatime” is unknown. Some update or other apparently deleted that option for CIFS (Windows) mounts. I can’t find any info about this on the Internet, which is odd. The “noatime” option is important: it tells the system to *not* update the “last access” time on files that the backup process touches, which is literally every file in the entire network, and hence pretty important.

    The solution should have been easy: just change to mounting as NFS. Only that turns out to be complicated: getting it enabled on our NAS, and getting the mounting to actually work within autofs – where other options no longer apply, the format of the mount command is slightly different, etc, etc… Crazy, how simple things eat so much time – half the afternoon is gone. Anyhow, I’m doing a test run now – fingers crossed…

  3. Greg Norton says:

    It’s fun, hearing the Texas temps. Glad I don’t live in that climate any longer. Here, we have highs around 85, and lows around 60. No AC needed – just open the windows overnight, and close them during the day. Of course, our Winters are nothing to envy – where we are, anyway, it’s months of overcast, and usually not even much snow to lighten things up.

    Don’t put too much faith in the forecasts for 108 in Central Texas next week. I’ve noticed a trend this summer in Austin that the weather people will sensationalize forecasts for a week out, and the actual conditions end up being fairly normal.

    After four years in Vantucky dealing with the micro climate lake effect storms, I told my wife that snow was on my “Never again” list. We had eight inches one night in Austin this year, but it was gone the next morning.

    I grew up in FL. I can deal with hot.

  4. JimL says:

    72º and sunny now. High of 76º, which shouldn’t be too bad.

    I grew up with in NW PA, so I can deal with snow. Heat? Not so much.

    I did something to my shoulder, which is causing a bit of pain for me. Seems to be a recurring theme. 2 weeks ago it was my elbow. I did nothing to cause a problem, but two weeks of “taking it easy” on the joint are the right fix, so that’s what I’m doing. My shoulder is already getting better.

    Looks like rain in Cleveland on Sunday. I’m hoping not, as there’s a triathlon there, and thunderboomers will likely kill the swim. It’s a big paycheck and I don’t want to cancel at the last minute. That would just suck. On the other hand, it’s going to be a lot of work in either event.

  5. hcombs says:

    I LOVED the climate in Wellington NZ. Never got hot enough for AC and only had a couple of days of frost the years we were there. Fantastic change from Oklahoma where I was born. But situations change and I am now in Mississippi (yuck) as hot and humid as Hong Kong.

  6. lynn says:

    “A.F. Branco Cartoon – Miss Me Nyet?”
    https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-miss-me-nyet/

    I love the KGB tattoo on Putin’s chest.

  7. lynn says:

    From BH in the Fort Bend Herald:

    “Remember, the more you weigh, the harder you are to kidnap.”

    “One more burger, if you will.”

  8. lynn says:

    Chicago is broke, and yet they’re talking about Universal Basic Income.

    Chicongo is freaking crazy. And my nephew moved there last year. And my brother’s wife is now flying there every Sunday and coming back on Friday. She will have to move there when she gets promoted again.

  9. lynn says:

    “San Antonio man executed for murder, robbery”
    https://www.chron.com/news/article/San-Antonio-man-executed-for-murder-robbery-13083445.php

    If you murder somebody in Texas in the commission of a crime, we will kill you.

  10. nick flandrey says:

    FedEx just dropped off my smuckers jam. VERY well packed. Each jar wrapped in bubblewrap, then a cardboard sleeve, with all six jars in a segmented box that was just the right size.

    Impressive.

    n

  11. Greg Norton says:

    If you murder somebody in Texas in the commission of a crime, we will kill you.

    My wife’s Chinese relations are scared of Texas. That is one of the reasons we moved to Austin instead of going back to Florida.

  12. MrAtoz says:

    My wife’s Chinese relations are scared of Texas. That is one of the reasons we moved to Austin instead of going back to Florida.

    lol!

  13. MrAtoz says:

    I love the KGB tattoo on Putin’s chest.

    Brennan has jumped the shark. What’s he looking for? Run for office?

  14. lynn says:

    If you murder somebody in Texas in the commission of a crime, we will kill you.

    My wife’s Chinese relations are scared of Texas. That is one of the reasons we moved to Austin instead of going back to Florida.

    Heh.

  15. lynn says:

    Google gmail is still political. I just got a funding request from Ted Cruz, our Texas junior Senator, put into my gmail spam folder. And I have donated money to him in the past so this is a legit email.

    Shame on Google. If their spam detection was not so awesome, I would move my domain away from it.

  16. lynn says:

    Looks like we are going to execute a reserve capacity test in Texas this afternoon. The current power usage is 69,263 MW. The current forecast is 72,000 ??? MW at 5pm. The current power generation capacity is 74,500 ??? MW. 2,500 MW is not much reserve as if two of the nukes go down then we will be shedding load. Plus when large power plants go down they tend to take smaller units with them due to the governors opening wide open and the capacity is not there so they trip on something going low.
    http://www.ercot.org/

  17. Greg Norton says:

    Looks like we are going to execute a reserve capacity test in Texas this afternoon.

    I had a power failure for about a minute yesterday morning and then again, for a few seconds, last night.

    Count me as part of the problem. With the kids out of school, my upstairs thermostat doesn’t cycle to 78 during the weekday afternoons. I have it locked on 76, and they gripe about that.

  18. lynn says:

    Count me as part of the problem. With the kids out of school, my upstairs thermostat doesn’t cycle to 78 during the weekday afternoons. I have it locked on 76, and they gripe about that.

    At least the schools are not opened at the moment. When I was at TXU in the 1980s, schools were 5% of our load. We would give the schools a reduced electrical cost if they did not open the school until after Labor Day. Nowadays, that has gone by the wayside and these idiot school boards are opening school in the middle of August.

    We are now above 71,000 MW and the reserve is 3,000 MW. I predicted back in January that allowing TXU to retire 4,200 MW of coal capacity was foolish for the state as a whole. I am hoping that I was wrong. If there are any unused gas turbines left, they had better be spinning them up now. On a day like this at TXU, we would now be starting all of our black start diesels to take some of the load off the main units which were all running on the ragged edge and getting hot.

  19. JimL says:

    When I was in school, we didn’t have air conditioning. When I left, they mandated that all new buildings have it built in, and all older buildings had to be retrofitted.

    There’s something to be said for sweating it out in September and May. I think adding A/C was a mistake. But it’s a mistake a lot of folks are making.

  20. Greg Norton says:

    Nowadays, that has gone by the wayside and these idiot school boards are opening school in the middle of August.

    Christmas break is almost three weeks anymore, and Thanksgiving is three days in most systems.

    You’ll never get the study approved due to politics (don’t ever mess with the Work-From-Home-Mommy Mafia), but I believe that working from home is a big factor for electricity consumption as well. Companies still have to cool/light their offices as if employees are showing up, and, at the same time, home thermostats are set to make those environments comfortable.

    Sure, there are gasoline and congestion savings, but the power grid takes the punnishment instead.

  21. DadCooks says:

    WRT to electrical usage:

    I am surprised there has been no discussion of the gaming nerds sitting in their parent’s basements with overbuilt gaming boxes/desktops/laptops sucking watts and generating an additional load on the A/C.

    And let’s not forget all the Bitcoin “miners”.

    Our local PUD (Public Utility District) has recently informed all customers that they have started to monitor electricity usage and will be taking action against people who have begun to use more electricity than their historical averages.

    Big Brother is watching.

  22. lynn says:

    And let’s not forget all the Bitcoin “miners”.

    “This Is What Happens When Bitcoin Miners Take Over Your Town”
    https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2018/03/09/bitcoin-mining-energy-prices-smalltown-feature-217230

  23. lynn says:

    Wow, Texas is up to $2,000 per MWH ! The average is $20 to $40 per MWH. And the load is over 1,000 MW over the previous high point. 72,248 MW instantaneous. The previous high point over one hour was 71,110 MW set on Aug. 11, 2016.
    http://www.ercot.org/content/cdr/contours/rtmLmp.html
    and
    http://www.ercot.org

    There may be more bankrupt electrical redistributors tomorrow at these prices. Each one of the redistributors has a deposit at ERCOT. My dad’s redistributor left the state back in March and threw him into the pool at 13 cents/kwh. He just signed up with someone else at 11 cents/kwh.

    A redistributor is someone like Gexa, Discount Energy, Reliant, TXU, etc, etc, etc who buys bulk power from ERCOT and resells it to residential and commercial customers. There are hundreds of electricity redistributors in Texas.
    http://www.powertochoose.org/

  24. MrAtoz says:

    Big Brother is watching.

    They’ll confiscate your CPAP if you don’t have a script and sleep study.

  25. Greg Norton says:

    I am surprised there has been no discussion of the gaming nerds sitting in their parent’s basements with overbuilt gaming boxes/desktops/laptops sucking watts and generating an additional load on the A/C.

    PC gaming is a niche thing anymore.

    As for the consoles, IIRC, the PS4 consumes 300W, probably less with the newer units. The XBox One has similar hardware. The replacement cycles are getting longer, and the industry learned from the retro scene that lower clock speeds extend hardware life significantly.

  26. SteveF says:

    We had eight inches one night in Austin this year, but it was gone the next morning.

    That’s what she said!

    If you murder somebody in Texas in the commission of a crime, we will kill you.

    Sounds like a stupid policy to me. If a criminal kills someone one purpose or even by accident, there is no reason at all not to kill everyone who crosses your path.

    That’s a pragmatic reason on top of my principled opposition to the death penalty.

  27. lynn says:

    Sounds like a stupid policy to me. If a criminal kills someone one purpose or even by accident, there is no reason at all not to kill everyone who crosses your path.

    “Ron White Texas Death Penalty”
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TgQRgT15f9U

  28. DadCooks says:

    @Greg Norton said:
    “PC gaming is a niche thing anymore.”

    Pretty big niche from what I have observed and it’s not just kids, you would be surprised how many adults (>30-years old) are into it. It is not uncommon for those “boxes” to be connected to multiple >50-inch 4K TV these days, even when they are wearing VR goggles.

    Currently 106°F and 15% humidity (15:42 PDT) so we will probably see 108° to 110° before day’s end. Been above 100°F for the past week and is predicted for next 2-weeks, this is our usual July. Even with our dams restricted to protect the poor fish, they are more than keeping up with demand and “redistribution”. The local wind farm and solar farm are pulling their weight and the nuke plant is humming along. My power monitoring shows a consistent 124 volts and steady 60Hz, no worry about a brownout here.

    Our A/C keeps us at a comfortable 70° and 35% humidity, I do not believe in this set the thermostat higher nonsense. (Yes, my Wife is wearing a sweater in the house.)

  29. lynn says:

    Man, that $2,000 per MWH did not last long. We are back down to $150 per MWH. Looks like the wind came up and started making more wind power.
    http://www.ercot.org/content/cdr/contours/rtmLmp.html

  30. lynn says:

    We hit 98 F at 48% RH today out here in the sticks of Sugar Land. Suppose to be 98 F each day here through the weekend and then 99 F on Monday.

    The wife is glad she left Carrollton, TX yesterday, it was 103 F when she left. It got to 106 F there today. Suppose to be 109 F there on Friday.

    Looks like Texas will be performing an electrical grid check for the next few days. I wonder what ERCOT will pull out of their hat tomorrow ?

    “Power use hit 72,192 megawatts on Wednesday afternoon, edging past the Aug. 2016 record use of 71,110 megawatts, according to figures from Texas’ grid operator.” ERCOT did roll through the peak today with just a little under 3,000 MW of reserves.
    https://www.chron.com/business/article/Texas-breaks-power-use-record-as-heat-wave-roasts-13086414.php

  31. nick flandrey says:

    Currently over 100F in the shade on my patio.

    Weather station says 106F in the driveway. Feels like is 119F.

    n

  32. SteveF says:

    OK, you hoarders — and you know who you are — which one of you owns this house?

  33. lynn says:

    Currently over 100F in the shade on my patio.

    Weather station says 106F in the driveway. Feels like is 119F.

    You be in the heat island of Houston, dude. The last time I measured* it, the invisible layer was about two miles east of the Brazos River in Sugar Land. Driving from my house 300 ft west of the Brazos to two miles east of the Brazos, the temperature rose from 98 F to 102 F. That was in the summer of 2016 (IIRC).

    * according to my Ford Expedition thermometer, not an instrument of great precision but, good enough

  34. Greg Norton says:

    Man, that $2,000 per MWH did not last long. We are back down to $150 per MWH. Looks like the wind came up and started making more wind power.

    Manual override on the pricing algorithm?

    The Expressway Authority never lets our pricing algorithm learn to price Mopac effectively enough to reduce the congestion. $20 tolls are about as politically acceptable as $2000 per MWH.

  35. Greg Norton says:

    Pretty big niche from what I have observed and it’s not just kids, you would be surprised how many adults (>30-years old) are into it. It is not uncommon for those “boxes” to be connected to multiple >50-inch 4K TV these days, even when they are wearing VR goggles.

    The right PC games still sell well, but it isn’t like the old days when Best Buy would have a whole aisle dedicated to shrinkwrapped PC titles.

    Apple deprecated OpenGL for the next Mac OS X.

  36. lynn says:

    Man, that $2,000 per MWH did not last long. We are back down to $150 per MWH. Looks like the wind came up and started making more wind power.

    Manual override on the pricing algorithm?

    The Expressway Authority never lets our pricing algorithm learn to price Mopac effectively enough to reduce the congestion. $20 tolls are about as politically acceptable as $2000 per MWH.

    ERCOT uses some sort of Dutch Auction to set the prices. It is too complicated for me.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dutch_auction
    and
    https://www.texaselectricityratings.com/blog/2012/06/29/ercot-market-manipulated/

    If the market is being manipulated then a lot of people are watching.

  37. lynn says:

    Apple deprecated OpenGL for the next Mac OS X.

    I saw that and am surprised. The game developers must have moved on to something else.

  38. Greg Norton says:

    I saw that and am surprised. The game developers must have moved on to something else.

    Apple wants the developers to build for Metal, their 3D library.

    OpenGL on iOS has always been hard, and, believe it or not, I doubt Apple has the real programming resources to divide among Metal, legacy OpenGL, and OpenGL’s successor, Vulkan.

    Interesting discussion today among the TAMU alums about the new football stadium and Jimbo. Not everyone in the fan base is happy about those expenditures.

    I smiled and said, “On behalf of the taxpayers of the State of Florida: Thank you for taking Jimbo off of the state payroll.”

  39. lynn says:

    Interesting discussion today among the TAMU alums about the new football stadium and Jimbo. Not everyone in the fan base is happy about those expenditures.

    I smiled and said, “On behalf of the taxpayers of the State of Florida: Thank you for taking Jimbo off of the state payroll.”

    I knew we were in for trouble when TAMU agreed to pay for moving both his ex-wife and his girlfriend to College Station.

    College football has disturbingly become semi-pro football. That is not a good thing. Student athletes, my hind foot.

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