Wed. Mar. 31, 2021 – feeling better, and can unlock doors without keycard…

Forecast for today is warm turning to cold and blustery. “Take a jacket with you” says the local weather liar. I guess we’ll see. Yesterday started overcast and with a weird yellow green light, but eventually the clouds blew out and it was nice here at the house.

Spent the day doing low demand things. Started by going back to bed, as I felt tired and ‘off’. Woke up feeling much better. I still felt a bit tired and like my body didn’t know how to regulate its temperature by the end of the day, but for a while I was almost back to normal.

Cleaned, folded laundry, watered the trees, blew leaves, all low demand stuff. It kept me moving though. During the hour that it takes to get child 2 from school I had a chance for a short chat with one of the teachers. I mentioned that I’d had some mild, but unpleasant reaction to the vaccine, and he said he was just now going to get his first shot. He’s had FIVE people in his circle die from covid. 2 family, 3 friends. Yes, hispanic. Yes, co-morbidities. You can live a long time with diabetes, or heart disease, or obesity though and he specifically said it was before their time. This thing may not be tearing through YOUR family, or YOUR town, but it is tearing through some communities like the plague it’s made out to be.

Today is more of the same. Some needful things need picking up. Some stuff needs to be readied for sale. Some paperwork needs to be shuffled. Some things need fixing.

And some things need stacking. I better get busy.

nick

Author: Nick Flandrey

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

49 thoughts on “Wed. Mar. 31, 2021 – feeling better, and can unlock doors without keycard…”

  1. 71F with 92%RH this morning.

    Tired but otherwise feeling ok.

    n


  2. Way more code than us, we have 1.3 million lines of F77 and C++. Plus the EMS code probably has 8 or 9 threads. Shoot, maybe a dozen threads, those guys are sharp. That is a realtime system, no memory allocation or deallocation. All variables are allocated at startup.

    Plus the system is interrupt driven. Which adds an entirely new level of complication. I have developed such systems. Prioritizing the task, having the ability to suspend a task and then resume without losing data, giving fair share, ability to change priorities, code has to be highly optimized, etc. Requires a different type of thinking. And I was probably more lucky than good at the task.

    In terms of automotive use events are actually quite slow relative to the speed of the computers involved. The highest speed system, and highest priority is the crash detection. Takes priority over everything as those bags have to deploy quickly along with the seatbelt tensioners (which hurt when activated). Followed by engine fuel shutoff, engine cutoff, activate flashers, and on some systems notify central control.

    The people that are more impressive to me are the people that program things like Mars rovers. Amazing technology. Able to do firmware updates from millions of miles away. Lot of fail safe modes in that code, lots of ability to recover from hardware issues.

    Look way back to the Apollo computer. An event driven computer with a multi-tasking OS. Something that had not been before. The computer was started in the early 60’s long before multi-tasking was available on the big iron. And then consider that the OS was physically wired into magnetic cores making changes extremely difficult, time consuming and expensive. Those were some impressively intelligent people. Would make me look like a 1st grade slobbering idiot.

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  3. Rain all day today at Cumberland Mountain State Park. Will spend the day in the RV trying to occupy time. Watch some movies that I had previously downloaded on the iPad. No TV reception. Take the dog for a walk so she can smell the message spots. May go into Crossville. Basically a day to do nothing.

  4. Must be fun (ha!) to work on that code base.
    I guess you’d have to go back to around 1970-71-72, before the first emissions controls, for a car with no computers at all.

    Carburetors. Primitive fuel injectors. Early 80s if you can find them still rolling around.

    Neither the hardware or the software engineering capability was there for much until the late 80s, and those cars didn’t leave the pipeline until the 90s.

    GM had to create a revision control/build system from zilch for the Northstar engine in the 90s. I don’t think they ever recovered the costs of that system actually selling cars so they dumped it on “partner” companies to recoup costs via licensing fees in the late 90s. I lived it at GTE.

  5. I am beginning to wish I had saved a local copy of every comment I’ve made on other people’s blogs. At least the big comments, about prepping issues. I am pretty sure I’ve written detailed comments about radio on JW,Rawles SurvivalBlog, but his search tool finds 3 depending on my keywords.

    I KNOW I wrote thousands of words at wazzizzname’s Survivalist blog that are gone now that he sold to the scammers.

    It would be nice to have the stuff and not have to keep writing it new every time.

    n

    (decent two part article about scanners and listening to them at SurvivalBlog yesterday and today, but totally stuck in the author’s mindset and biases. It’s what I’d normally reply to in comments, but they shut comments down over there… and since the barrier is just THAT much too high, I won’t contribute what I would have.)

  6. Currently 79F and overcast. If the front is moving in, it isn’t here yet….

    n

    quiet day 🙂


  7. Would make me look like a 1st grade slobbering idiot.

    No problem, I’m a natural.

    I write most of my comments in Libre Writer. I don’t save then all but most I have in folders. I mainly went to using a wp program to avoid losses and better spelling checker

  8. MD Creekmore. That’s who I meant with wazzizname… and turns out I scraped his site, so I’ve got his 2000 posts. Haven’t checked to see if I have the comments.

    n

    yep all the comments too thru April of 2018 anyway. How the heck do I find mine in all that?

    n

  9. During the hour that it takes to get child 2 from school I had a chance for a short chat with one of the teachers. I mentioned that I’d had some mild, but unpleasant reaction to the vaccine, and he said he was just now going to get his first shot. He’s had FIVE people in his circle die from covid. 2 family, 3 friends. Yes, hispanic. Yes, co-morbidities. You can live a long time with diabetes, or heart disease, or obesity though and he specifically said it was before their time. This thing may not be tearing through YOUR family, or YOUR town, but it is tearing through some communities like the plague it’s made out to be.

    The Covid has definitely hit the USA. The CDC Exccess deaths graph is now giving a clear picture of 2020 and it is not pretty. Nor is the first part of 2021 when it was over 80,000 deaths per week but the predicted value was 60,000 deaths per week.
    https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nvss/vsrr/covid19/excess_deaths.htm

    One of the things is that our modern society has gotten very good at is extending life. Cancer, heart, kidney, liver, and other problems are no longer the immediate death sentence that they were 200 years ago. But, Covid upset that balance and took a significant portion of the people on the edge of death. I wonder what the rest of 2021 and 2022 are going to look like. Assuming, that the Chinese do not release a new variant of the Covid.

  10. “Once again, Congress wants to go back in time to steal your money”
    https://www.sovereignman.com/trends/once-again-congress-wants-to-go-back-in-time-to-steal-your-money-31753/

    “The proposed legislation is called the “Sensible Taxation and Equity Promotion” Act of 2021, or STEP for short. Wonderful! Another catchy acronym for yet another destructive law.”

    “This one takes aim at the estate tax, and it is filled with stupidities.”

    “Based on current US federal estate tax law, if someone dies today, his/her assets are exempt from federal tax estate tax up to $11.2 million, or $22.4 million for a couple.”

    “If it passes, the value of a newly deceased person’s estate will be valued at Fair Market Value.

    “Then, any unrealized capital gains would be taxed based on that person’s original cost basis (so no more ‘step up in basis’).”

    “Essentially they’re treating you as if, on the day that you died, you sold all of your assets and had to pay capital gains tax.”

    “But they’ve dropped the exemption all the way down to $1 million.”

    Yup, the tax man cometh. They have to pay for the three trillion dollar infrastructure boondoggle and there is another two trillion dollar stimulus right behind it.

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  11. Yup, the tax man cometh. They have to pay for the three trillion dollar infrastructure boondoggle and there is another two trillion dollar stimulus right behind it.

    plugs’ tax plan will crush small businesses and eventually the middle class. I’m sure the Redumblicans and RINOs will sit on their thumbs as usual. Orange Man Bad.

    LET THE HEELING AND FLEECING OF US PEONS BEGIN!

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    1
  12. I am working on updating the support for all the new refrigerants in our software. I am also reviewing the existing refrigerants in our software. I ran across this beauty yesterday, R-40, methyl chloride. R-40 is chemically reactive, flammable, and toxic. You cannot get any better than these. Oh yeah, and cheap.

    So, people have been buying canisters of R-134a sourced from China. But in reality, the R-134a is expensive so they sometimes put R-40 in the canister. Cheap ! The problem is that R-40 reacts with aluminum piping in cheap a/c heat exchangers to form trimethyl aluminum. And trimethyl aluminum, once exposed to air, burns immediately and violently. Shiny !
    https://ccar-greenlink.org/refrigerant-review-r40/

    ““Extremely toxic… flammable… highly reactive…””

    “As you might imagine, anytime we hear those words used in our industry it causes our antenna to up in a big way.”

    “More and more we are learning about the dangers of a very volatile refrigerant called R-40. This dangerous and harmful material is NOT suited for mobile air conditioning (a/c) systems, and even a small amount of R-40 blended with other types of commonly found automotive refrigerants (like R-134a for example) can result in disastrous outcomes. To date, some offshore R-134a cylinders have been found to be contaminated with R-40 — with several deaths already associated with this growing concern.”

    Be safe out there.

    2
  13. s So, people have been buying canisters of R-134a sourced from China. But in reality, the R-134a is expensive so they sometimes put R-40 in the canister. Cheap ! The problem is that R-40 reacts with aluminum piping in cheap a/c heat exchangers to form trimethyl aluminum. And trimethyl aluminum, once exposed to air, burns immediately and violently. Shiny !

    I just saw something about another potential class action lawsuit against Ford over transmissions sourced in China for the Mustang.

    The “$20 Reeboks” dream dies hard.

  14. LOL!

    plugs almost fell going up AF1 steps in the rain. The Camel will probably throw a few banana peels on the steps next time.


  15. “More and more we are learning about the dangers of a very volatile refrigerant called R-40. This dangerous and harmful material is NOT suited for mobile air conditioning (a/c) systems, and even a small amount of R-40 blended with other types of commonly found automotive refrigerants (like R-134a for example) can result in disastrous outcomes. To date, some offshore R-134a cylinders have been found to be contaminated with R-40 — with several deaths already associated with this growing concern.”

    Is Greta Thuneburg going to help plugs on this?

    1
  16. LOL!

    plugs almost fell going up AF1 steps in the rain. The Camel will probably throw a few banana peels on the steps next time.

    Again?

  17. LOL!

    plugs almost fell going up AF1 steps in the rain. The Camel will probably throw a few banana peels on the steps next time.

    Where is Chevy Chase when you need him ? Gerald Ford fell on the steps once and Chase mimicked him on Saturday Night Live for over a year. Plugs falls several times and Chase says nothing.

    2
  18. Where is Chevy Chase when you need him ? Gerald Ford fell on the steps once and Chase mimicked him on Saturday Night Live for over a year. Plugs falls several times and Chase says nothing.

    Even if he wanted to do something on SNL, Chevy Chase has once again been persona non-grata at NBC for a while.

    The last time I saw Chevy Chase in something on screen was Burt Reynolds’ last movie, literally “The Last Movie Star”. I understand he also appears in the sad Crocodile Dundee sequel which got lost in the pandemic back in … August?

    The Reynolds flick is worth the time if you are a fan and willing to overlook major revisionist history regarding his college football experience in the almost semi-autobiographical story. Maybe that plays better away from Tallahassee and Gainesville.

  19. Look way back to the Apollo computer. An event driven computer with a multi-tasking OS. Something that had not been before. The computer was started in the early 60’s long before multi-tasking was available on the big iron. And then consider that the OS was physically wired into magnetic cores making changes extremely difficult, time consuming and expensive. Those were some impressively intelligent people. Would make me look like a 1st grade slobbering idiot.

    One of those impressively intelligent persons wrote a memoir:

    <a href="https://www.amazon.com/Sunburst-Luminary-Apollo-Don-Eyles/dp/098638593X/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=098638593X&qid=1617223413&s=books&sr=1-1%5C%22%3ESunburst&tag=ttgnet-20 Sunburst and Luminary: An Apollo Memoir

  20. “Lessons in physics”
    https://gunfreezone.net/lessons-in-physics/

    “This story in two parts:”.

    Yup, the mileage range on a Tesla pulling a 2,000 lb flat faced trailer (a aerodynamic brick) drops from 324 miles to 120 miles. As a commenter mentioned, he should have put a jerry can of electrons in the trailer. Or maybe a few thousand D cells.

  21. “Microsoft Security Report Says Firmware Exploits Are On The Rise”
    https://www.onmsft.com/news/microsoft-security-report-says-firmware-exploits-are-on-the-rise

    “Microsoft cites a recently commissioned study on firmware security investments compiled by Security Signals. It shows that over 80 percent of businesses have experienced a firmware attack within the past two years. The survey also found that across the board, only 29 percent of enterprise security budgets were allocated to tackling firmware exploits. The Security Signals study involved interviews with 1,000 enterprise security decision-makers (SDMs) from the United States, Germany, UK, Japan and China.”
    https://www.microsoft.com/security/blog/2021/03/30/new-security-signals-study-shows-firmware-attacks-on-the-rise-heres-how-microsoft-is-working-to-help-eliminate-this-entire-class-of-threats/

    You have got to be kidding me. This is why I have my office LAN double NATted.

  22. Look way back to the Apollo computer

    There’s a book about how it worked: “The Apollo Guidance Computer” , Frank O’Brien, Springer/Praxis 2010, ISBN 978-1-4419-0876-6, which describes, in exhaustive detail, how it worked, and how it was used, both in the Apollo CSM, and LM. Available on Big River, where I got my copy.

    And Ken Shirriff has actually got one running on the bench – without most of the special peripherals, admittedly. He’s even got it to mine Bitcoin – slowly (10.3 seconds/hash) See his blog entries, here.

    edit: and I couldn’t get the Amazon link to format properly.
    G.

     

  23. >> Or maybe a few thousand D cells<<

     

    Does someone still sell 'lantern batteries'? Seems to me they'd make a great emergency backup source to charge smartphones and the like.

     

    'Course you'd probably have to futz with the voltage somehow.

  24. Look way back to the Apollo computer

    There’s a book about how it worked: “The Apollo Guidance Computer” , Frank O’Brien, Springer/Praxis 2010, ISBN 978-1-4419-0876-6, which describes, in exhaustive detail, how it worked, and how it was used, both in the Apollo CSM, and LM. Available on Big River, where I got my copy.

    The Apollo computer was a custom 37 bit version of the CDC 6600 mainframe. I ported our software to the CDC 7600 mainframe (60 bit !) back in 1977 or so. It was a nice machine and the 60 bit words were awesome.

  25. The Apollo computer was a custom 37 bit version of the CDC 6600 mainframe.

    The computers in the CM and LEM were a 16 bit design from Draper labs at MIT, optimized for guidance, navigation, and control operations. The computer in the Saturn 5 that controlled the stack until it got to orbit was a 13 bit design from IBM. The backup abort computer was designed by TRW and used 18 bit words. Mission control in Houston ran on IBM 360 computers.

     


  26. Where is Chevy Chase when you need him ? Gerald Ford fell on the steps once and Chase mimicked him on Saturday Night Live for over a year. Plugs falls several times and Chase says nothing.

    Hearing Chevy’s name always reminds me of this clip:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uq-gYOrU8bA

  27. Does someone still sell ‘lantern batteries’? Seems to me they’d make a great emergency backup source to charge smartphones and the like.

     

    Beware.

    My experience in carrying them, still in shrink wrap, for emergency use in my vehicles, is that they have a lifetime of about a year.

     

     

  28. Hearing Chevy’s name always reminds me of this clip:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uq-gYOrU8bA

    In 1985, Chevy Chase owned comedy with “Vacation” on home video, the PG-rated “Foul Play” in endless reruns during daylight hours on HBO, and “Fletch” in theaters.

    The sequel, from the less-popular followup album, “Rhythm of the Saints”:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z5Oh-GDikis

    The followup has some odd audio engineering which was a huge turnoff after “Graceland”. To resolve the discrepancy, Simon went back about 20 years ago and … reengineered “Graceland” to give it the same muddy vocals as “Saints”.

    Sadly, my original copy of “Graceland” is long gone. Fortunately, I have the 1991 “Concert in the Park” which features decent live mixes of the best songs.

  29. edit: and I couldn’t get the Amazon link to format properly.

    Nor could I, as you can see by looking at my previous comment in re “Sunburst and Luminary.” To check if the automated addition of the “ttgnet-20” tag still mangles the ink, I didn’t use my usual workaround of posting my Amazon links through https://tinyurl.com/app. As always, the link is mangled. 🙁

  30. When I’m doing an actual post, which editor uses the visual page, going back and forth from text to visual always mungs the “add on” stuff, like the amazon link. IOW, if you do an amazon link, don’t edit…

    n

  31. edit: and I couldn’t get the Amazon link to format properly.

    Nor could I, as you can see by looking at my previous comment in re “Sunburst and Luminary.” To check if the automated addition of the “ttgnet-20” tag still mangles the ink, I didn’t use my usual workaround of posting my Amazon links through https://tinyurl.com/app. As always, the link is mangled.

    When I am posting any links, I switch the comment editor from “Visual” to “Text” mode. Then I paste the link and save the comment:
    https://www.amazon.com/Mutineers-Moon-Dahak-David-Weber/dp/0671720856/?tag=ttgnet-20

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  32. I agree, the ttgnet-20 addition and the fancy-schmancy  WISIWYG interface mangles the intent of clear, immediate communication among peers. A tipjar would more than suffice for the paltry annual income, and nevermind the residuals because Barbara won’t live that long.

     

    Anyway, Delta, Coca Cola CEOs blasts Georgia’s ‘unacceptable’ voting law

    I’ve never understood that phrase. By whom is it unacceptable? How is it unacceptable?

    BTW, http://www.bookseriesinorder.com is a godsend.

    1
  33. I always do posts in the TEXT tab. It is the one with the blockquote button and that saves a lot of typing given that most of my posts are comments to comments.

  34. @Greg Norton

    “The followup has some odd audio engineering which was a huge turnoff after “Graceland”. To resolve the discrepancy, Simon went back about 20 years ago and … reengineered “Graceland” to give it the same muddy vocals as “Saints”.

    Sadly, my original copy of “Graceland” is long gone. Fortunately, I have the 1991 “Concert in the Park” which features decent live mixes of the best songs.”

    This was the 2004 reissue with bonus tracks? So the original CD is not altered?

  35. This was the 2004 reissue with bonus tracks? So the original CD is not altered?

    The original “Graceland” CD sounds different than the reissue. And not in a good way.

    I don’t believe the reissue was done with Roy Halee, Simon’s regular audio engineer.

  36. A tipjar would more than suffice for the paltry annual income, …

    Hear, hear!

  37. Follow-up re: Paul Simon’s Graceland:

    1986 vinyl had 11 tracks, as did initial cd releases

    2004 reissue added 3 bonus tracks

    2011 remaster has this on the Amazon webpage:

    EJ

    “I really hate what they did with this recording. It’s so offensive to me that I’m actually distracted by the production and can’t enjoy the playing and singing. There’s so much color coming off the reverb and re-mastering I can’t hear what was actually recorded. It was mastered well 25 years ago. This is not a good way to re-release the album, and won’t garner any new lovers of the record over the original. boo. ”

    2012 reissue previously-unreleased bonus tracks (25th anniversary edition) added 3 more bonus tracks, for a total of 17.

  38. Follow-up 2 re: Paul Simon’s Graceland:

    I went back to allmusic and counted 15 separate cd’s on the release list

    One is probably a database error.

    Of note, however are:

    –2004  [Bonus Tracks]Warner Bros. / Rhino 8122789042

    –2007  [Bonus Tracks] Rhino R-274803

    which hopefully predate any remastering.

    NOTE: corrected date typo on first Rhino listing above

  39. A tipjar would more than suffice for the paltry annual income, …

    Hear, hear! ”

    –RBT had very specific views about ‘monetizing’ websites. I had a chance (coincidentally) to re-read them yesterday while looking for something else.

    20 June 2017

    I’ve unbookmarked both sites because they don’t follow my acceptable site policy, which simply stated is:

    o It is unacceptable for any site to run any type of ads whatsoever under any circumstances whatsoever.

    o It is unacceptable for any site to interfere in any way with the functions of any ad-blocker, popup blocker, or script blocker.

    o It is unacceptable for any site to use a paywall to limit access to some or all of its content.

    o It is unacceptable for any site to require any form of registration, including even an email address, and whether that registration is free or paid, to access the content on that site. [note the registration FOR ACCESS, not to comment– nick]

    o The only acceptable form of monetization is for a site to implement a micro-payments system that allows users of that site to pay a clearly-defined and readily-visible amount for each article or page that user views. Breaking articles into multiple pages to increase the cost to users of viewing an article is unacceptable.

    –the amazon affiliate money offsets the server and registration costs, partially iirc.

    –would a tip jar be for site upkeep, Barbara, Rick, me? One each? Things get weird quickly.

    n

  40. reduced living standard for you and me. Increased for the ruling class. average stays the same….

    n

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