Mon. April 5, 2021 – jeez, empty brain syndrome strikes again…

Cool and clear, or humid and wet, or possibly cool humid and wet. There’s actually a shape on the national forecast map I’ve never seen before, so who knows what today will be like. Not that the weather liars know anyway…

And yesterday was all those things at different times, including actual rain drops falling, and sunny blue sky. Since I’m still trying to get my back back to normal, I took yesterday pretty easy. Did a couple of small things around the house and yard. Did a couple of small things for the auction. With my wife not feeling well after the second moderna shot, I made hamburgers instead of a big lamb meal. That will have to happen in the next few days as I already defrosted the lamb, but it didn’t have to happen Sunday.

I’ve got stuff to do today that will depend on whether my wife is in the office or on the couch. I’m hoping she feels a lot better. One ‘advantage’ of having a big todo list is being able to pick a task appropriate to your available time and resources. . . . … . sure. right. yup. Go with that….

There’s always something more to do, and always something that doesn’t get done. I am currently way out of balance with those two though. Gotta shift some stuff into the ‘done’ pile.

Seems like I’ve been saying that or variations on it for far too long. This last year has been like Groundhog Day. That is starting to change, but I worry I’ve built some bad habits. Time to really work on changing that.

So I’ll wrap up with the same admonition as always, keep stacking. ‘Cuz it’ll be too late when the zombies are chewing on your leg…

n

Author: Nick Flandrey

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

54 thoughts on “Mon. April 5, 2021 – jeez, empty brain syndrome strikes again…”

  1. I found X-files on Hulu today. I’ve been binging it while working on my personal income taxes, you know, pay unto Caesar…

    MeTV has “Kolchak: The Night Stalker” back in the Saturday night rotation.

    “Kolchak” isn’t ‘must binge’, but catch a few episodes and Darrin McGavin’s appearances on “The X Files” suddenly have a very cool context.

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  2. Mentally Ill Man undergoes emergency surgery after cosplay addiction.

    –oh, not in today’s world

    Transgender woman, 24, is forced to have testicle removed after it became twisted in agonising injury caused by ‘tucking’

    Trans woman, 24, gave herself testicular torsion by tucking them into her body
    She was admitted to hospital in Davao City, Philippines,

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  3. Kinda lonely when everyone’s at work but me….

    n

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  4. Mentally Ill Man undergoes emergency surgery after cosplay addiction.

    The article didn’t mention cosplay. Philippines. More likely a prostitute catering to the US Navy.

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  5. Heads up, Nick. You can always put some paint on a soccer ball and carry it around if you need companionship.

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  6. “The article didn’t mention cosplay”

    –when I rewrote the headline, I meant he was cosplaying a female.

    n

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  7. The supreme court took google’s side in the Oracle API dispute!

    Computing has been saved. Literally.

  8. The supreme court took google’s side in the Oracle API dispute!

    Computing has been saved. Literally.

    A decision in the other direction would have eventually handed the global computer industry back to IBM, AT&T, and HP (through their DEC IP from Compaq). Even Roberts can understand that situation is undesirable.

    I can’t explain Alito and Thomas’ dissent, but I’m sure a money trail exists somewhere.

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  9. I’ll read the decision when I can, but absent other information I suspect that Thomas’s dissent came from a strict reading of the law, suggesting that the law needs to be changed if we don’t want a few companies to own all of computer science.

  10. Catching up. This is from Saturday and I have not checked on other replies…

    Need to add a 1 TB internal SATA 3.0 HDD to a new PC. Any particular brand folks here are recommending these days? Thanks.

    Stay away from spinning rust unless you need more than 2 TB. Soon to be 4 TB. WD Blue 1 TB SATA SSD is $101. I have got the WD Blue 500 GB SSD running in my home pc.

    @lynn; this will be my first opportunity to mess up work on a PC with an SSD. According to its specs it supports one SSD (already installed – M.2 format) and one HDD (not installed). if I go with a second SSD is it a plug/play replacement for the HDD? Am I correct that I may need a bracket to fit the 2.5″ SSD into the 3.5″ HDD bay?

    I just replaced the 2.5″ SATA drive in my ACER Aspire with an SSD. I used one from Samsung (only about 250GB – I store very little locally so bought the smallest and least expensive drive available- and I think the idea of 250GB as the smallest available is funny – showing my age). Anyway, it is a drop-in replacement(100 x 69.85 x 6.8 mm). Any drive that size (not just Samsung) will do. Then purchase a USB to SSD cable if you need to clone the hard drive to the SSD, then download the Samsung Magician software. Follow instructions or check via google for same. Painless and quick. I now have 2 Samsung SSDs (one in the desktop, one in the laptop) and have had no trouble, and the software for transfer works very well. (I assume that software might work for any SSD, but you know what they say about assumptions).

    I did this upgrade for performance purposes, so if that is your motivation, make sure you have maxed the RAM you can install as well. Going from 2GB to 8GB made a huge difference in performance.

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  11. law needs to be changed if we don’t want a few companies to own all of computer science.

    Agree, API compatibility is absolutely essential to the future of open source. If the law says it’s illegal, there has to be a change in the law.

    There are great people like Torvalds and Stallman (minus his politics) who just give away their work and made everything better. And then there is Oracle who would destroy much of the open source world, including Android and even iPhone, to make a few dollars.

  12. Even if you don’t have obvious hazards like hurricanes and floods, I bet there are railroad tracks, pipelines, or a freeway near you that could cause an evacuation. And if none of those things are near your house, then I’d bet wildfire or forest fire should be on your list.

    Nope, Nope, Nope, Nope, Nope, Nope, and Nope. Our last flooding was the “great flood” of ’84, with 4″ of rain and flooding of low lying areas. Forests are at least 20 miles away, and there is not enough vegetation for grass fires to propagate. Our most serious threat is a major earthquake, and we had a 7.1 recently that did not damage our property. We could have stronger ones, but most structures would protect their contents even if damaged. We could live temporarily with makeshift repairs, but I do worry that there could be forced evacuations with water and electric power cutoff (no nat gas to our site.) Many of our neighbors are even more independent minded than I am, and would politely refuse to evacuate. I don’t want to contemplate the next steps, but we are in a county with the seat 120 miles away, and mostly absent sheriffs. We might be left alone, as is normal.

    I don’t want to sound smug. Our greatest threat is the steady government intrusion, especially federal and state. This is the same as at least half the population of the country.

    We have carefully watched people who have left our area. There is a significant percentage of people who have not liked their new location, and a few who have returned here. Those most satisfied have gone to areas we would not consider, mostly big cities and cold climates. We came from those. We have lived in areas populated by people who crowded them because they were popular, and we were not happy. We fould a place few people like, but we love. I remember OFD saying something like, “It is 20 degrees with gusts to 50 mph. Keeps the riff-raff out.”

    The wife and I went to visit the son in 29 Palms, California in 2007 before he headed back to Iraq for his second tour. When his bus left for March AFB, we went east and then headed north on the first paved road that we could find. We eventually ended up at I-40 after passing through some of the most desolate country in the Mojave desert that I had even seen. Sounds like your neck of the country (woodless does not begin to describe it !).

  13. @Lynn Megavar, truly an EE, despite you are chemical as far i rememeber

    @Ray hope your travel finishes well and soon

    Mechanical Engineer, jack of all trades. We aren’t proud, we will do anything that is needed.

    When I worked at TXU, we had Megavar gauges on our generators, right next to the Megawatt guage. We had to be careful to make sure that we were not leading or lagging the generators too much as they would start to overheat if the ratio dropped to less than 90% and definitely by 85%. We would change the amount by changing the taps on the autotransformers in the switching yard.


  14. I suspect that Thomas’s dissent came from a strict reading of the law, suggesting that the law needs to be changed if we don’t want a few companies to own all of computer science.

    From media accounts, that is exactly what the dissent says. Thomas is pretty consistent in ruling what laws say is what they say if it is not in conflict with rights in the Constitution. He believes that it is then up to Congress to fix it.

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  15. I did this upgrade for performance purposes, so if that is your motivation, make sure you have maxed the RAM you can install as well. Going from 2GB to 8GB made a huge difference in performance.

    Windows 10 is no longer usable at 4 GB or below in my experience.

    8 GB is marginal.

    Fedora Linux with zRAM enabled and an SSD makes 4 GB on my daughter’s castoff Inspiron 14 tolerable to use the machine as a personal travel laptop, but the point of that machine is to have minimal functionality for work-related purposes beyond answering an email in an emergency.

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  16. I did this upgrade for performance purposes, so if that is your motivation, make sure you have maxed the RAM you can install as well. Going from 2GB to 8GB made a huge difference in performance.

    Windows 10 is no longer usable at 4 GB or below in my experience.

    8 GB is marginal.

    Fedora Linux with zRAM enabled and an SSD makes 4 GB on my daughter’s castoff Inspiron 14 tolerable to use the machine as a personal travel laptop, but the point of that machine is to have minimal functionality for work-related purposes beyond answering an email in an emergency.

    One of the things I discovered after the upgrade, when I also installed or at least viewed some monitoring software, was that over 2GB of memory was always in use. That meant that with only 2GB installed, the CPU was always throwing page-faults to virtual memory on disk. Yech!!! 8GB for what I use it for is quite acceptable, but may not be sufficient for others. I think the guideline is to always max out the memory installed if you can. That is relatively inexpensive and almost always improves performance. Of course YMMV. (It is possible I would be fine with only 4-6 GB, but that means spending time analyzing behavior to determine what is the real need and then buying just enough. That is too much like work, life is short, and RAM is cheap.)

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  17. Thomas is pretty consistent in ruling what laws say is what they say if it is not in conflict with rights in the Constitution. He believes that it is then up to Congress to fix it.

    I think that Thomas is the only Justice worth a damn during my entire lifetime. A few others aren’t too bad, but “not too bad” means only “activist in a direction generally in line with my beliefs”.

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  18. I finally found a good cable and connected the antenna amp.  I now have 44 channels.

    The weirdness is having two of each on channel 14.  Same content and quality.  For example, 14-3 is “H&I”.  And now also “Heroes”.

    Well, it will be interesting to see what happens when the weather causes interference.

    Added: I have seen pictures where some TVs show the frequency aka Real Channel of the channel. My now eleven year old TV doesn’t have the feature.

  19. The weirdness is having two of each on channel 14. Same content and quality. For example, 14-3 is “H&I”. And now also “Heroes”.

    I believe there is a virtual 14 KBVO in both Llano and Austin, using different UHF channels. I’m not sure how that works.

    We watch DS9 reruns nightly on the Llano 14.3 H&I fed from our attic antenna facing south. I’m not sure why that works either because Llano is NW of our house.


  20. Texas man admits kidnapping 79 people to anally probe them while disguised as an alien.

    Florida man says, “Are you challenging me?”

  21. The wife and I went to visit the son in 29 Palms, California in 2007 before he headed back to Iraq for his second tour. When his bus left for March AFB, we went east and then headed north on the first paved road that we could find. We eventually ended up at I-40 after passing through some of the most desolate country in the Mojave desert that I had even seen. Sounds like your neck of the country (woodless does not begin to describe it !).

    That IS desolate, although I haven’t been there. I just looked up your route. We are farther north, about 120 miles north of San Bernardino. We are also about 80 air miles SW of Death Valley. Our valley floor is about 2300′ elevation, so we are considered high desert. We are surrounded by five mountain ranges, which moderate our weather. The night-day temp range in summer is typically 60-100F, and 25-50F in winter. Summer humidities are typically 10% at the high temperature. Records are 0-119F. Annual precipitation is 3-4″, mostly in winter.

    We have over three thousand kinds of wildflowers, but no native trees. The predominant scrub is creosote. There are other kinds of bushes, but I am not a botanist. Some kinds of trees can survive, but they need to be watered.

    Winds high enough to cause damage are rare, once or so in my almost fifty years here.

    Respect the desert. Extreme temps and no shelter can kill. There be bears and cougars in the mountains, sssnakes and spiders everywhere. Wear sturdy clothing. Some tourists are unfriendly. Manson and his followers hung out nearby in the Panamint mountains. Tall tales and colorful yarns abound. We love it.

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  22. What is the proper way to tell how much RAM is enough? I have two W10 computers. One runs Home, and the other Pro, both 64 bit. All I have for monitoring is the Windows Task Manager, and both typically max out at ~55% RAM usage. I use mine to edit still photos, but even that does not seem to use much RAM. Disk activity is very low, except of course when opening or saving files, so I doubt the page file is used much or at all. I am happy as is, but will alwars accept improvements.

    I would like to put a SSD in the notebook, because I worry about mechanical shocks. My wife normally just closes the lid and it sleeps between uses. It resumes from sleep (suspend to RAM) about as fast as the display lights up.

    Mine resumes from hibernate (suspend to disk) in about a minute, which is good enough for me. I would like to install a bus card SSD in it, because these are getting affordable, and are something like several times faster than SATA SSDs. Probably a waste.

    BTW, I used to brag about long times between restarts, but with monthly updates usually requjring a restart, this is no longer true.


  23. @paul, so it was loss in the cable?

    In the cable from amp to TV.

    I’m downhill from the paved road. The antenna is mumble mumble maybe 20 feet up. Reception is usually good. When Lake Travis has fog or temp inversion or I don’t know, we lose most Austin stations. Channel 7 almost always works…. VHF. Llano/14 has always been sketchy, even pre-digital when I had a big antenna on the roof.

    62-x always works. Another VHF channel.

    The whole point of the amp is to boost the signal enough to not need to screw with the antenna. I’m as high as I feel comfortable without guy wires. It’s an ongoing experiment.

    Channel 14 is wacko. Look at https://www.rabbitears.info/market.php?request=print_market&mktid=65


  24. What is the proper way to tell how much RAM is enough?

    I seem to remember 2GB per core being considered the minimum. So, a Windows system with an 8 core processor would like at least 16GB.

  25. Thanks, Chad. I’m away from home, but will check. I am pretty sure the desktop has four discrete cores. The notebook has two, but four virtual. Whatever.


  26. We watch DS9 reruns nightly on the Llano 14.3 H&I fed from our attic antenna facing south. I’m not sure why that works either because Llano is NW of our house.

    Before amp, 14-3 said “H&I”. I now have “Heroes”, too. I don’t know which is from Llano on 27.5 and which is from Austin on 34.3. I’m going to guess the one that says “Heroes” is from Austin because there have been times where we get nothing from Austin but we can get “H&I”. Shrug.

  27. Guy looks like an alien

    Hoo boy, he does. I normally avoid such stories, but am a little bored. Hey, where is that cash bail reform? He could be free to party on! Looks like he will be busy for a while. Wierdo.


  28. “We are farther north, about 120 miles north of San Bernardino. We are also about 80 air miles SW of Death Valley. Our valley floor is about 2300′ elevation, so we are considered high desert.”

    Yuuup.  Roger that.  Been there a number of times, very familiar with the area.

  29. Before amp, 14-3 said “H&I”. I now have “Heroes”, too. I don’t know which is from Llano on 27.5 and which is from Austin on 34.3. I’m going to guess the one that says “Heroes” is from Austin because there have been times where we get nothing from Austin but we can get “H&I”. Shrug.

    The proper name for H&I is Heroes & Icons. The virtual channel probably allows one number to cover neighboring territories with different chunks of spectrum. ATSC is either you get the channel or you don’t, without any fuzzy image in between as with analog.

    MeTV, H&I, and, IIRC, Decades are all owed by the same company in Chicago, Weigel Broadcasting.

     

  30. Yuuup.  Roger that.  Been there a number of times, very familiar with the area.

    Not very remote, is it?

    Why, we have tents. Hitching posts. Running water. No more outhouses. We is civilized!


  31. Then there is this:

    Well, yeah. On the upper right of the page at World News Daily: “Where facts don’t matter”.

     

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  32. The supreme court took google’s side in the Oracle API dispute!

    Computing has been saved. Literally.

    I’ll read the decision when I can, but absent other information I suspect that Thomas’s dissent came from a strict reading of the law, suggesting that the law needs to be changed if we don’t want a few companies to own all of computer science.

    Fair use ! Big decision in the software wars. I expected that decision, but not the fair use argument.
    https://www.scotusblog.com/2021/04/google-wins-copyright-clash-with-oracle-over-computer-code/

    That is a swish in the net IMHO. No laws struck down, just an application of existing law.


  33. Well, yeah. On the upper right of the page at World News Daily: “Where facts don’t matter”.

    I thought that only applied to CNN.

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  34. Dang it, weird looking guy would be perfect for the role…

    n

  35. Thomas is pretty consistent in ruling what laws say is what they say if it is not in conflict with rights in the Constitution. He believes that it is then up to Congress to fix it.

    I think that Thomas is the only Justice worth a damn during my entire lifetime. A few others aren’t too bad, but “not too bad” means only “activist in a direction generally in line with my beliefs”.

    Scalia ???
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antonin_Scalia

    “Scalia espoused a conservative jurisprudence and ideology, advocating textualism in statutory interpretation and originalism in constitutional interpretation. He peppered his colleagues with “Ninograms” (memos named for his nickname, “Nino”) which sought to persuade them to agree with his point of view. He was a strong defender of the powers of the executive branch. He believed that the Constitution permitted the death penalty and did not guarantee the right to abortion or same-sex marriage. Furthermore, Scalia viewed affirmative action and other policies that afforded special protected status to minority groups as unconstitutional. These positions earned him a reputation as one of the most conservative justices on the Court. He filed separate opinions in many cases, often castigating the Court’s majority using scathing language. Scalia’s most significant opinions include his lone dissent in Morrison v. Olson (arguing against the constitutionality of an Independent-Counsel law), his majority opinion in Crawford v. Washington (defining a criminal defendant’s confrontation right under the 6th Amendment), and his majority opinion in District of Columbia v. Heller (holding that the 2nd Amendment to the U.S. Constitution guarantees a right to individual handgun ownership).”

  36. I think I have COVID as I have lost my sense of taste. Today I wore striped pants along with a checkered shirt.

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  37. Respect the desert. Extreme temps and no shelter can kill. There be bears and cougars in the mountains, sssnakes and spiders everywhere. Wear sturdy clothing. Some tourists are unfriendly. Manson and his followers hung out nearby in the Panamint mountains. Tall tales and colorful yarns abound. We love it.

    My brother’s redbone coonhound got bitten by a copperhead again Saturday at their farm in Luling, Texas. She went into convulsions but my nephew got her to the vet for some antivenom. She is still alive but not sure if she is going to make. She is a sweet girl who can sing out like you would not believe. When she bays in the house the whole world just stops until you let her out.

  38. Bat Boy grew up! Well the ears kinda match. Maybe an older relative.

  39. @Lynn

    My brother’s redbone coonhound got bitten by a copperhead again Saturday at their farm in Luling, Texas. She went into convulsions but my nephew got her to the vet for some antivenom. She is still alive but not sure if she is going to make. She is a sweet girl who can sing out like you would not believe. When she bays in the house the whole world just stops until you let her out.

    Hope she pulls through.

    I’m curious about the antivenin cost. I know the human-approved is under patent and sky-high, but haven’t heard anything about veterinary version.

     

  40. US Grant To Wuhan Lab To Enhance Bat-Based Coronaviruses Was Never Scrutinized By HHS Review Board, NIH Says

    –The National Institutes of Health has “systematically thwarted” government oversight of dangerous pathogen research, Rutgers University professor of chemical biology Richard H. Ebright told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
    –The P3CO Review Framework was created in 2017 after a three-year pause on government funding of research that intentionally makes pathogens more deadly or transmissible.
    –An NIH grant that involved the modification of bat-based coronaviruses and the transfer of $600,000 to the Wuhan Institute of Virology prior to the pandemic bypassed P3CO review because the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, led by Anthony Fauci, didn’t flag the project for review.

    https://dailycaller.com/2021/04/04/nih-gain-of-function-anthony-fauci-review-board-wuhan-lab/

    I would be willing to provide a water board and my assistance to Congress in getting some answers out of Dr. Fauci.

    He should be nominated for the Dr. Mengele Memorial Prize


  41. I would be willing to provide a water board and my assistance to Congress in getting some answers out of Dr. Fauci.

    Faux-ci is the kind of ProgLibTurd who would squeal just at the sight of a water board and bucket.

  42. @Lynn

    My brother’s redbone coonhound got bitten by a copperhead again Saturday at their farm in Luling, Texas. She went into convulsions but my nephew got her to the vet for some antivenom. She is still alive but not sure if she is going to make. She is a sweet girl who can sing out like you would not believe. When she bays in the house the whole world just stops until you let her out.

    Hope she pulls through.

    I’m curious about the antivenin cost. I know the human-approved is under patent and sky-high, but haven’t heard anything about veterinary version.

    Last I heard it was $600 per application for a dog. And a dog may have to have several applications. I doubt that it has gotten any cheaper. Not asking right now, she is having complications with bloody diarrhea which means a twisted intestine. They may have to put her down and she is 10 ? 11 ?.

    Most dogs are about 60% processing for the nose. She is about 80%. Dumb as a post but she loves people. She is about a 100 lbs and thinks that she is a lap dog.

  43. My brother’s redbone coonhound got bitten by a copperhead again…

    Hope she makes it. At least she is big, probably a mitigating factor.

    Dumb as a post but she loves people.

    I had a dog a little like that. She was a delight. Not everyone can be above average smart.

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  44. I got to pet and scratch two dogs today. And it was good.

    n

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  45. I got to pet and scratch two dogs today. And it was good.

    n

    I did not think that we were going to get another dog anytime soon but the daughter and wife went by the Sugar Land dog pound in late 2019 to do a looksee. They saw Lily and brought her home for a two day visit. On the way out, they saw a mom with a 7 or 8 year old son walking in and the boy said, “That’s the dog I want”, made my daughter feel real guilty. They brought Lily home and she fit right in, we did not realize that she was only three months old and had quite a bit of growing to do. The next day they were talking about taking her back before they fell in love (which was too late already). I told them if they took her back then somebody else would permanently adopt her. So we talked ourselves into keeping her.

    Dogs are good for people. And vice versa. Even if they are a pain in the buttocks. Even the cat likes her as he sleeps next to her all the time. And looks for her when he wants to beat her up.

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