Wed. Dec. 8, 2021 – progress made, finally

By on December 8th, 2021 in Random Stuff

Cool and breezy, easy peasy, lemon squeezy…Very cool yesterday after the sun went down. Moderate temps before that. As I drove around there was sun, and there was overcast.

Today should be more of the same on all fronts.

Be careful out there, y’all.

n

(turns out, I can sleep for 4 hours in my office chair.)

65 Comments and discussion on "Wed. Dec. 8, 2021 – progress made, finally"

  1. Nick Flandrey says:

    62F and 91%RH.   Not great sleep in the chair, but not terrible.

    I fell asleep right after writing about the overcast.

    More after I get the kids out of the house.

    n

  2. brad says:

    Mixed rain and snow at the office. At home, it ought to be only snow, but I won't find out until tomorrow. My wife may get to use the snowblower for the first time. Or maybe she will refuse, and I'll do it tomorrow. Time will tell.

    Finally, we are eligible to sign up for a booster shot. I guess they've gotten through the risk groups. So we'll make an appointment tomorrow. With luck, we can get in this weekend, or next week.

    Meanwhile, the semester is winding to a close. Two more weeks of lecture, then exams in February. I'm seeing the usual mix: (a) students who are doing extra programming, to make sure they understand stuff. (b) students suddenly doing exercises from 6-7 weeks ago, but hey, at least they're doing them. (c) students who have dropped out of sight.

    I put in a pile of effort this semester – completely re-worked the course. Usually, about 45% of the students fail. I'm betting, with all the extra effort I put in, that this year about…45% will fail. Cynical, but almost certainly true…

  3. Greg Norton says:

    I put in a pile of effort this semester – completely re-worked the course. Usually, about 45% of the students fail. I'm betting, with all the extra effort I put in, that this year about…45% will fail. Cynical, but almost certainly true…

    The US sees a smaller failure rate in the Intro classes, but a whole lotta cheating takes place due to the CS paper being so lucrative, particularly right now in Austin, with the rising Tonymobile factory dominating the landscape out the window as you step onto the escalator down to baggage claim after your flight lands at the airport.

  4. Ray Thompson says:

    Basketball game last night. Same rivalry as last Thursday. Girls got slammed, they suck this year. Boys one again against the same team but by a much wider margin. The gym is noisy, the student section rowdy, the place is cramped, smaller court than full size. Other teams dislike playing at the venue because of the noise and the student section.

    Anyway, for a time sink, pictures are at http://www.raymondthompsonphotography.com/OSHS

  5. Nick Flandrey says:

    Kind of a brain fog this am, while I don't feel wiped out like I didn't get any sleep, it was interrupted and still less than 6 hours.  

    Quick check of the news shows things proceeding apace.   People are noticing the inflation as if it's just now coming and something for the future.   It's here.  Food, durable goods, pretty much everything.  Inflation wipes out savers, those on a fixed income, and the generally prudent.    Pretty sure that describes a lot of readers here.

    Remember that there doesn't seem to have been any one point in Venezuela's crazy inflation where you could have said "ok, time to get out" *  with absolute surety.

    Remember the stories about people eating street animals?  Zoo animals?  Hijacking food trucks?   The guy who blogs at Come and Make It in the Philippines noticed some time ago the sudden scarcity of street dogs there.   Things have improved lately as he says "The number of street dogs in my area has gone back to normal after the locals ate most of them earlier this year.  "   I use his reports on local conditions as a heads up for economic matters, and Chinese "slide on in under the guise of a helping hand" tactics.    He's doing what he can to protect and provide for his family.

    Yes it's the third world, but much of the world lives in the third world countries, and there is plenty of evidence that we're headed down the ladder instead of up.

    Convince me I'm wrong.

    n

    *out of the currency, out of cash savings, out of the country…

  6. MrAtoz says:

    Coming to a neighborhood near you:

    Yes, your "fully vaccinated" status can expire

    This is my fear: "Oh, you got a booster, but it was too late and you need to get two more clot shots before you can board our cruise."

    Hey, plugs, how about some frickin' guidance from your administration. How about those free cootie test kits on every corner? How about just some sensible guidance and no more fear porn.

    I don't want a clot shot if I don't need one.

  7. Greg Norton says:

    Got moderated today. Was it the word "Tonymobile"?

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  8. Nick Flandrey says:

    Moderated?  Or server error?

    I don't see any comments pending.

    n

  9. drwilliams says:

    @Gre Norton

    Got moderated today.

    Tart  You were probably asking for it  

  10. Alan says:

    >> How about those free cootie test kits on every corner?

    Well, ya see, we want to, umm, but, err, the FDA… 

    The administration recently announced people with private health insurance would be reimbursed for the tests, which often cost between $20 and $30 for a pair.

    "That's kind of complicated, though," Liasson noted. "Why not just make them free and give them out to – and have them available everywhere?"

    Psaki shot back sarcastically: "Should we just send one to every American?"

    After Liasson suggested that maybe this was actually a good idea, Psaki responded, "Then what happens if you – if every American has one test? How much does that cost, and then what happens after that?"

    There are many reasons the reality of rapid testing elsewhere hasn’t become reality here, as The Washington Post and ProPublica have detailed. Psaki pointed to some perhaps-valid ones on Monday, including the relatively few rapid at-home tests that have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

    https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/The-White-House-gets-testy-over-its-coronavirus-16682516.php

  11. Greg Norton says:

    Big Smile!

    Interesting how the investigators found her as a contact of an infected party. My last project at the tolling job was working for Transurban, a large Australian company that operates private roads both in that country and around DC in the US. Transurban owns lots of plate scanning cameras.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mGFdWcJU7-0

    Think it can't happen here? This time last year, commenters in this space were answering my skepticism about the shots by promising me a forced jab even if it meant personal intervention.

    I'm still waiting… I know, thumbs down.

    As long as mask kabuki prevails outside of an airplane, it can happen here IMHO. Masks are a sign that at least half of the population are still scared silly.

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  12. Geoff Powell says:

    @alan:

    How about those free cootie test kits on every corner?

    That's what the UK is doing. I've just received an invitation to register for a blanket testing programme for CV-19 and flu. This is valid regardless of whether I have (or had) symptoms of either. Note: it's an invitation, not a demand. And it’s free, no out-of-pocket, for me, paid for by the NHS, so it’s from taxes.

    If I register, they will send me a PCR test in the New Year. I probably will do it – I'm just NOT going to use the Test and Trace app, or even install it on my phone. That app is a snoop to far.

    G.

  13. Greg Norton says:

    If I register, they will send me a PCR test in the New Year. I probably will do it – I'm just NOT going to use the Test and Trace app, or even install it on my phone. That app is a snoop to far.

    Check your iPhone's Settings -> Exposure Notifications and make sure Apple hasn't opted you into their tracing at your government's insistence with the last iOS update.

  14. Geoff Powell says:

    @greg:

    Yes, I know about that. Support is provided for the decentralised tracing protocol, and has been for several months, but you need the appropriate local app, to talk to your country's infrastructure.

    So it is said…

    And the app is not, and will not be, installed. Unless by Government fiat, and HMG haven't gone that far.

    Yet.

    And I don’t use an iPhone. Currently a Nokia 8.3 5G, so Android One.

    G.

  15. Jenny says:

    I like animals. Very much. I have a lot of respect for sheep after years of herding them for fun with my dogs. Sheep look sweet, but are at heart, jerks. 
    this story, regrettably, surprises me not at all. 
    I’ve been trampled and stomped by the rotten monsters, and would have been head butted numerous times without intervention from my dog. I’ve fed and cared for them solo, so I don’t think the women necessarily did anything wrong. After 14 months I hope she’d know their body language. That being said, in your 70’s a barrier or a dog with you, would be prudent.

    They are cute, and we will insist on engaging in anthropomorphism. Not an animal I would have considered for ‘comfort’. 

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-10283523/Volunteer-73-dies-repeatedly-rammed-comfort-sheep.html

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  16. RickH says:

    @Ray – nice pix!

    You might want to look into this simple-to-use PHP-based picture display program: http://sye.dk/sfpg/ . Free.

    It automatically scales pix to the display port, has the next/prev buttons, handles subfolders of pix, has thumbnails. Works really well. Only requires one index.php in the folder. You can put pix files in that folder, or have sub-folders containing pix. Customizable 'skins' with some simple CSS.

    Have used it for years for quick display of pix on web sites. Good stuff.

  17. Greg Norton says:

    I like animals. Very much. I have a lot of respect for sheep after years of herding them for fun with my dogs. Sheep look sweet, but are at heart, jerks. 

    Growing up in The South, you learn not to ever trust a pig. They will kill and eat you if they had the capability, and I'm always surprised when I see a big adult at a petting zoo.

    Blame “Charlotte’s Web” and the Earl Hammer (“The Waltons”) script for the TV adaptation. The crazy thing is that Hammer knew better, having also grown up in the region *on a farm* rather than the small town run by the Klan where I grew up.

    Florida has a long, ugly tradition of the Hog & Dog rodeo, an underground betting event which pits a hog, preferably as feral as possible, against a pit bull. The dog is *not* an automatic favorite.

    The other animal we were taught to be wary of were the “scrub cows”, breeds going back to the Spanish colonial days, especially the bulls. In theory they are domesticated, but fences tend to be an interesting suggestion to those critters, more about keeping humans out than cows inside. A scrub bull will look at the inside of the fences as his territory rather than set of boundaries.

    2
  18. Ray Thompson says:

    You might want to look into this simple-to-use PHP-based picture display program
     

    Might do that. I currently just do a direct upload from Lightroom to my website. That upload is only used to get images to the editor of the local paper. He finds the images he likes and then downloads. The site is not for the general public, the links are never posted anywhere but here so I can give y’all a time sink. In a week the link is gone. Thus the link and site has very limited use.

    The images people see are on Facebook and watermarked.

  19. RickH says:

    @Ray – you could just have one install of the programs' index.php, then upload pix files as needed. When you want to put up a new set (and remove the old set), just delete the old pix and upload the new ones. Or upload the new set into another subfolder, leaving the old set (date-stamped folder name?) until they need to 'expire' (just delete them from the host).

    You can even organize a 'set' into subfolders, and just upload the entire set. Maybe the main folder of '2021-12-05', and subfolders  of 'girls-bb', 'boys-bb', 'misc', etc.

    The easy part if once you have the single index.php file in the main folder, you just need to upload files/folders into that folder, and no other programming required. Thumbnails are created automatically, and clicking on the thumbnail brings up the main picture at full resolution, but scaled for the display port.

    Great program.

  20. lynn says:

    "Workers Are Using ‘Mouse Movers’ So They Can Use the Bathroom in Peace"

         https://www.vice.com/en/article/88gqgp/mouse-mover-jiggler-app-keep-screen-on-active

    "Leah didn’t expect her TikTok video about a work-from-home hack to go viral. She started using a mouse mover—a small device placed under her computer mouse, to keep the cursor active—after her job as a business lead in advertising transitioned to remote work at the start of the pandemic. Her company-issued computer set her status to “away” whenever she stopped moving her cursor or got up from her desk for more than a few seconds, and with three kids at home who needed help doing remote classes during school lockdowns, that little “away” signal was driving her nuts."

    You have got to be kidding me.  No wonder people are quitting jobs all over the place.

    Hat tip to:

       https://www.drudgereport.com/

  21. RickH says:

    Researchers at the Texas A&M College of Medicine figured out how the Covid virus  evades the human immune system.

    https://scitechdaily.com/covid-19-breakthrough-scientists-discover-how-the-sars-cov-2-virus-evades-our-immune-system/

    Interesting.

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  22. SteveF says:

    Any time I hear of Aggies doing research, I picture slope-foreheaded prehumans researching what happens when they stick their hands in fire.

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  23. Geoff Powell says:

    @lynn:

    Workers Are Using ‘Mouse Movers’ So They Can Use the Bathroom in Peace

    In my last days before I retired, my employer did the same thing. I had to install a "mouse mover" to stop being locked out of my man network computer. All the special purpose computers, on their own network, didn't need any such workarounds, but the general-purpose machine, no. Mouse jogging was required to avoid the inactivity timeout, which was set to 10 minutes, and could not be over-ridden by a peon.

    In fact, I had to look out that same programme, for one of my former colleagues, only a few months ago. He'd evidently got to the (quoting Popeye) "That's all I can stands! I can't stands no more!" point. Or else, had his computer replaced, I don't know, and I didn't ask. Thank $DEITY that such tweaking programmes could be installed.

    G.

  24. Ray Thompson says:

    @RickH: I currently just export directly from Lightroom into the site. A couple clicks and I can walk away. Lightroom does all the work. I will give it a try and see if it is better than my method of just letting Lightroom do all the work. Thanks for the tip.

  25. Greg Norton says:

    "Workers Are Using ‘Mouse Movers’ So They Can Use the Bathroom in Peace"

    You have got to be kidding me.  No wonder people are quitting jobs all over the place.

    To be fair, there has been poor behavior on both sides.

    I don't know anyone who works two jobs from home … at least, not that they will admit … but I have friends who are day trading, watching Netflix, or running kids around town during business hours.

    IBM has internal studies going back 20 years which are heavy indictment's of my generation's work ethic when trusted to be based at home. If you are currently or were at one time an IBM employee using the NetClient VPN to work remote, your ThinkPad provided zero privacy.

    OTOH, I think having everyone work from home has dehumanized employees as far as the C suite is concerned, and the yoga pants-clad girls in HR working from home do the dirty work of firing … now via Zoom!

  26. Ray Thompson says:

    @RickH: I installed the file, uploaded some directories, and it seems to work for the most part. There is an issue where a thumbnail for a folder will not be generated until the folder is actually visited. Thus, no preview icon of the folder. I am trying some of the customization options and other configuration options.

  27. RickH says:

    @ray – there is an option somewhere to pre-generate the thumbnails; but you are correct that they thumbnails aren't created for a folder until you go into that folder.

    Or, you can just view the folder yourself, which will generate the thumbnails.

    Your process could be to just to FTP the files/folders to the site, deleting any files/folders you don't want visible anymore. Then you can use the same URL for your client – they don't need a new URL to see the current pix.

    Great little program. Lots of tweaking available if you want it. (Like automatically generating watermarks, IIRC.)

  28. Greg Norton says:

    Any time I hear of Aggies doing research, I picture slope-foreheaded prehumans researching what happens when they stick their hands in fire.

    Oh, God, no. TAMU is an extremely wealthy, powerful school. Their physical gold horde alone is larger than many countries' and led to Texas establishing a repository.

    For some jobs in this state, such as veterinarian or accountant, don't even bother applying unless you have "the ring". Maybe in Austin … or Dallas … where the standards are lower.

    The one odd thing about the school is the large number of alumni which seem to be involved in the Furry subculture. Go to a con in Texas, even video games or horror movie special shows, and you will see Furries.

  29. lynn says:

    "Mutineer's Moon (Dahak Series)" by David Weber
       https://www.amazon.com/Mutineers-Moon-Dahak-David-Weber/dp/0671720856/br?tag=ttgnet-20 />

    Book number one of a three book space opera military science fiction series. I read the well printed and bound MMPB published by Baen. This is my favorite SF book and series of all time as I have reread it eight or ten times now. I did buy a new copy of the MMPB which is the six printing from 2004, the original publishing was in 1991. I am rereading the second book in the series now which sadly, has gone out of print as a standalone book.
       https://www.amazon.com/Armageddon-Inheritance-David-Weber/dp/0671721976/br?tag=ttgnet-20 />

    55,000 years ago, a Fourth Imperium Utu class 2,000 km diameter planetoid, Dahak hull number 177291, dropped out of Euchanch drive due to a supposed failure. Dahak and his 250,000 person crew were headed to a picket post for forty years at the edge of the Milky Way Galaxy. It had been 7,000 years since the last genocidal invasion of the Achuultani, a race who periodically swept the Milky Way of all life, who had destroyed three Imperiums and countless civilizations. But the FTL drive failure was not a accident, it was sabotage. And the mutiny that followed exiled the mutineers and crew alike on Earth, the third planet of the Sol System.

    Today, the unmanned picket posts are warning of the imminent invasion by the Achuultani. And Dahak is not receiving any warnings by hypercom from Central Command. Nor can he transmit a warning to Central Command as that capability was sabotaged also. Dahak needs a crew and a NASA pilot on a solitary mission, Colin McIntyre, around the Moon looks to be a good candidate. For you see, Dahak is the Moon.

    I do not know why this is my favorite SF book and series of all time. I like the standup position of the chief protagonist, Colin the First. Or that there are so many different species of intelligent space races. Or that the book is written so tightly, especially when compared to Weber's later works. Or that an self aware artificial intelligence shares the main protagonist job in the book, much like Heinlein's _The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress_.

    I keep on hoping that David Weber will write more books in the Dahak series but, I doubt it. He did write the Safehold series which is along the same lines as this book, overpowering space aliens and self aware artificial intelligences. BTW, there is an ending to the Safehold, Honorverse, and Dahak series that David Weber wrote as joke:
       http://www.davidweber.net/posts/443-how-safehold-wont-end.html

    The entire series is also available in an omnibus book, _Empire From The Ashes_ in either kindle or trade paperback. I also own this book in trade paperback.
       https://www.amazon.com/Empire-Ashes-David-Weber/dp/141650933X/br?tag=ttgnet-20 />

    Here is my 2006 review of the book: "I love this book. Of my 5,000+ SciFi books, it is my favorite. True, it is a little bit raw. But, it tells a SOLID story and leaves you wanting more more more at the end. That is the sign of a great book. A sentient ship the size of the moon and the unique story of the "space aliens" makes for a totally cool story. BTW, I am reading it for the 5th or 6th time (who keeps count ?). Weber owes a couple of authors for his story: Heinlein's The Moon is a Harsh Mistress and the Perry Rhodan series. There are two sequels to this book, also 5 stars. I am valiantly waiting for the fourth …"

    My rating: 6 out of 5 stars (yes 6 stars, I have about 20 six star books)
    Amazon rating: 4.6 out of 5 stars (211 reviews)

  30. Greg Norton says:

    Oh, God, no. TAMU is an extremely wealthy, powerful school. Their physical gold horde alone is larger than many countries' and led to Texas establishing a repository.

    I almost forgot — Stroustrup was there for about a decade, teaching and trying to develop a C++ instructional book rather than just a reference, as a “service” to the community.

    Plus, I'm sure he would like a book that does not have the Death Star on the copyright page. The royalties probably go to Dallas.

    Stroustrup left Labs not long after I joined in mid-2000, when word came down that owning what eventually became Comcast could require management to start learning to climb telephone poles again as Kabuki for Wall Street whenever CWA wanted to renegotiate the contracts.

    (Pole climbing classes eventually started, but not until the SBC takeover and BellSouth merger, just in time for CP09 in early 2008.)

    BTW, recent co-workers who endured Stroustrup’s book at TAMU all say it was lousy as far as a means to learn C++ … just like his book for the Death Star.

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  31. Brad says:

    I think having everyone work from home has dehumanized employees as far as the C suite is concerned

    Above a certain organizational size, employees have long been just numbers in a spreadsheet. And sometimes even in smaller organizations, if the bosses are classic MBA types.

  32. Ray Thompson says:

    @Rick: Yeh, I have to think about it some. The script seems fairly easy to use and is a great little program, but a change in my routine.

    The images are already loaded in Lightroom, no need to export, just inform Lightroom to upload. I use the same directory name, navigation files get overwritten with new information, old images, basically dead as there is no direct link, just remain. Once a month I will delete the entire directory thus removing the dead links.

    I host at IONOS as it costs $4.00 a month, more than enough bandwidth, store 10 gig, 262,000 files, allows PHP 7.4. Does what I need.

    And in other news, still working on MIL estate.

    We had to create an executor account at a local credit union. The CU in Texas finally transferred the money. Vanguard requires an executor account with them. It takes up to a week to establish the account and transfer the money. There is also the matter of $9.16 RMD that was supposed to be done on the MIL accounts. Not certain where that is going to fall. Hopefully within 10 days or so we can complete the transfer out of Vanguard into the CU account (not the executor account), when the MIL's money is being stored. Then transfer out of the executor account at the CU into MIL's money storage account. Then split the money with the wife's brother.

    There is still the matter of taxes. I don't know what has to go on the 1041, not certain about filing MIL's taxes. Two different entities. Will have to wait for all the documents and hope for the best. The IRS, or rather Congress, has made this process entirely too complicated. The lawyers designed probate to enrich themselves, Congress and the IRS designed the system to confuse, and trap, taxpayers into penalties and interest.

  33. Greg Norton says:

    There is still the matter of taxes. I don't know what has to go on the 1041, not certain about filing MIL's taxes. Two different entities. Will have to wait for all the documents and hope for the best. The IRS, or rather Congress, has made this process entirely too complicated. The lawyers designed probate to enrich themselves, Congress and the IRS designed the system to confuse, and trap, taxpayers into penalties and interest.

    My father-in-law didn't file tax returns for several years spanning his heart transplant and recovery, which really complicated his estate.

  34. Greg Norton says:

    Above a certain organizational size, employees have long been just numbers in a spreadsheet. And sometimes even in smaller organizations, if the bosses are classic MBA types.

    The last 10 years have seen the rise of the HR droids in Corporate America, however, and I think it has made the situation worse.

    Give the droids, typically Arts & Letters building grads, a title and an opportunity to mostly work remote, and they'll do the C suites' dirty chores, including firing for "policy violations".

    Everything is a "policy violation" anymore.

  35. lynn says:

    "Ford aims to be world's #2 electric vehicle maker within two years – COO"

         https://www.reuters.com/business/autos-transportation/ford-aims-be-worlds-2-electric-vehicle-maker-within-two-years-coo-2021-12-03/

    "Dec 3 (Reuters) – Ford Motor Co (F.N) expects to be the world's second largest electric vehicle manufacturer within two years, with annual production capacity of nearly 600,000, a top company executive said Friday."

    "She said Ford working with five global battery suppliers to manufacture and help develop battery cells for its future EVs, aiming to build 240 gigawatt-hours of production capacity globally by 2030. Those suppliers include SK On, LG Energy Solution, CATL, BYD and Panasonic.

    "Ford expects to reduce EV battery cell cost to $80 per kilowatt-hour at the pack level "well before the end of the decade," Drake said."

    That is quite a goal, both the annual production and battery cost. I want 300 kwh in any truck that I buy.

  36. ech says:

    There is still the matter of taxes. 

    You will need to file a return for the MIL, and indicated that she died.

    You will need to get a Tax ID number for the estate (can be done online), but you probably have one already if you have estate accounts. Then the estate files a tax return each year until it is settled. When I did my mom's estate, you could file on a calendar year basis or on a "fiscal year" basis. If you can get it wrapped up in a year, I'd do the "fiscal year" option so you only need to file once. The estate's income tax is a PITA to figure. IRS said I made a $15 error one year, I just paid it.

  37. Greg Norton says:

    "Ford aims to be world's #2 electric vehicle maker within two years – COO"

         https://www.reuters.com/business/autos-transportation/ford-aims-be-worlds-2-electric-vehicle-maker-within-two-years-coo-2021-12-03/

    "Dec 3 (Reuters) – Ford Motor Co (F.N) expects to be the world's second largest electric vehicle manufacturer within two years, with annual production capacity of nearly 600,000, a top company executive said Friday."

    That is quite a goal, both the annual production and battery cost.

    Don't forget landfill costs and infrastructure upgrades. No one shelling out for the EV F150 is going to want to trickle charge at home, even on two phase 220V.

    My Bat Guano neighbors spent something like $50k on upgrading the electrical system at their house to have three phase to fast charge the crazy wife's custom plug-in Prius. Fortunately, our street was less than a half mile from a major substation, with a major line running out on the main road to a politically powerful church located in the opposite direction.

    I used to think that the goal of Toyota's 20 year project (to date) to take down the F150 was a fools errand, but now I'm not so sure anymore. Ford might just shoot themselves in the foot.

  38. lynn says:

    I used to think that the goal of Toyota's 20 year project (to date) to take down the F150 was a fools errand, but now I'm not so sure anymore. Ford might just shoot themselves in the foot.

    I doubt it.  Ford sells about a million F-150s a year.  A significant percentage of those pickup buyers do want electric powertrains.  Ford is just covering their bases.  And the electric F-150 will be able to use the Tesla Superchargers if I understand correctly.

  39. Alan says:

    >> "Workers Are Using ‘Mouse Movers’ So They Can Use the Bathroom in Peace"

         https://www.vice.com/en/article/88gqgp/mouse-mover-jiggler-app-keep-screen-on-active

    “Working remotely, your colleagues can't physically ‘see’ when you get up to go to the bathroom or grab lunch. Or even take 30 minutes to reset on the couch,” Leah told me. “The last thing I wanted during those moments was to be paranoid that people thought I wasn't working—especially since I felt like I was working more than ever.”

    (emphasis added)

    So in other words, she wants people to think she's working while she's napping on the couch on company time.

    Got it. Me, I wouldn't work where that level of scrutiny is SOP.

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  40. SteveF says:

    Ford expects to reduce EV battery cell cost to $80 per kilowatt-hour at the pack level

    So we can expect to see a doubling of the number of preteen slaves digging the lithium and other minerals?

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  41. lynn says:

    Ford expects to reduce EV battery cell cost to $80 per kilowatt-hour at the pack level

    So we can expect to see a doubling of the number of preteen slaves digging the lithium and other minerals?

    Probably a tenfold increase, not a doubling.

    Of course, if they do figure out a way to recycle lithium that will help immensely.

  42. lynn says:

    "Putin to Biden: Finlandize Ukraine, or We Will" by Pat Buchanan

         https://buchanan.org/blog/putin-to-biden-finlandize-ukraine-or-we-will-158813

    "Either the U.S. and NATO provide us with “legal guarantees” that Ukraine will never join NATO or become a base for weapons that can threaten Russia — or we will go in and guarantee it ourselves."

    "This is the message Russian President Vladimir Putin is sending, backed by the 100,000 troops Russia has amassed on Ukraine’s borders."

    Biden needs to stop poking the emaciated bear.  That bear still has teeth and claws.

    Would we, the USA, allow Mexico to become a Russia client ?

  43. Greg Norton says:

    So in other words, she wants people to think she's working while she's napping on the couch on company time.

    Got it. Me, I wouldn't work where that level of scrutiny is SOP.

    Whether they admit it or not, most large employers in the US have that level of scrutiny as standard procedure. It goes back at least as far as the late 90s, when the enabling tech started to be good enough, and companies started issuing laptops instead of desktop PCs./p>

  44. SteveF says:

    Think back to the breakup of the USSR. Ukraine had, IIRC, the world's third-largest arsenal of nuclear missiles. They gave them up on the promise of security guarantees from the US and a few European nations.

  45. lynn says:

    "Houston-area attorney files massive $10 billion lawsuit against Astroworld Festival"

       https://houston.culturemap.com/news/city-life/12-07-21-astroworld-festival-lawsuit-1-billion-awsuit-brett-coon-travis-scott-livenation/

    "A local law firm has just filed the largest suit to date against Travis Scott’s Astroworld Festival after the mass-casualty tragedy that claimed the lives of 10 concert-goers. Attorney Brent Coon is demanding $10 billion in restitution on behalf of 1,547 attendees — that’s more petitioners than any firm thus far."

    Anyone for a trillion dollars ?

  46. Ray Thompson says:

    You will need to file a return for the MIL, and indicated that she died.

    That I knew. Estate accounts are another matter. Form 1041 needs to be filed for the estate accounts. There is the matter of dividends from certificates that were transferred to the estate account. Are those going to get reported to my wife or the estate account? I think the estate account. I was also informed there was $19.65 due for RMD for the MIL for 2021. Where does that get reported or paid? I think the entity holding the IRA pays to the IRS but I don't know.

    Two executor accounts were required. One for the credit union to transfer funds, Vanguard wanted their own executor account. Take two weeks to set up and the investments are transferred from MIL account to executor account. Probably takes another two weeks to close the executor account and have the funds transferred. Or will Vanguard pull some stunt where the funds have to remain for a year or suffer an early withdrawal penalty?

    So many unanswered questions. The system is entirely too complicated, designed to benefit lawyers, who were the ones who constructed the system.

  47. Greg Norton says:

    "Houston-area attorney files massive $10 billion lawsuit against Astroworld Festival"

    Anyone for a trillion dollars ?

    Marketing by FOMO has a price.

    A lawsuit is serious FOMO in modern America.

  48. lynn says:

    Think back to the breakup of the USSR. Ukraine had, IIRC, the world's third-largest arsenal of nuclear missiles. They gave them up on the promise of security guarantees from the US and a few European nations.

    We, the USA, have no vested interest in the Ukraine.

    I don't want my son to die in Ukraine trying to push back the Russians.

    3
  49. Greg Norton says:

    I can't resist making the joke — They're getting all antsy in their pantsy in Canada.

    The picture made me do it.

    https://www.zerohedge.com/markets/canada-forced-tap-its-emergency-maple-syrup-reserves

    1
  50. Greg Norton says:

    "Think back to the breakup of the USSR. Ukraine had, IIRC, the world's third-largest arsenal of nuclear missiles. They gave them up on the promise of security guarantees from the US and a few European nations."

    I don't want my son to die in Ukraine trying to push back the Russians.

    Bush 41 told the Russians that NATO wouldn't expand to their borders.

    Poland was bad enough, but the Russians looked the other way. Ukraine or the Baltics are not going to happen.

    Again, the whole world took a lesson from what Obama and Biden did to Khadafy.

  51. ~jim says:

    Think back to the breakup of the USSR. Ukraine had, IIRC, the world's third-largest arsenal of nuclear missiles. They gave them up on the promise of security guarantees from the US and a few European nations.

    *That's* an interesting point. 

    Should we project and protect the principles of free enterprise and capitalism? Or allow feudalism to swallow up nearby countries? 

    If I were King, I’d cite noblesse oblige, and show Putin the finger.

  52. mediumwave says:

    Think back to the breakup of the USSR. Ukraine had, IIRC, the world's third-largest arsenal of nuclear missiles. They gave them up on the promise of security guarantees from the US and a few European nations.

    *That's* an interesting point. 

    Especially in light of His Fraudulency's ignominious abandonment of Afghanistan.

  53. ~jim says:

    Especially in light of His Fraudulency's ignominious abandonment of Afghanistan.

    When you look past the intellectuals, Edward Said and orientalism, et al., there is a lot of respect in India given to the British for the benefits of their imperialism, AKA colonialism.

    Afghanistan and the Khyber Pass don't matter much anymore and we made fools of ourselves by trying the kind and gentle approach. Afghanistan, and Pakistan as well, can either fear or respect the Western way of doing things. They can fear us when we put atomic salt piles in the middle of Kabul, or they can respect us when we put their houses in order by forcibly establishing rule of law.

    I find it somewhat amusing that the Chinese are putting the Afghanis out of business because their fentanyl production exceeds the opium production. 

  54. Alan says:

    >> Give the droids, typically Arts & Letters building grads, a title and an opportunity to mostly work remote, and they'll do the C suites' dirty chores, including firing for "policy violations".

    Everything is a "policy violation" anymore.

    I've seen it happen a few times, including twice where the person was escorted from their desk by a security guard and an HR person. Their stuff gets boxed up overnight and nothing but an empty cube the next morning remains.

    Hard to defend yourself when, every year, you are required to take the code of conduct training and sign off that you've read it. MDs are tasked with chasing stragglers and most hate the 'busy work.'

  55. Alan says:

    >> "Ford expects to reduce EV battery cell cost to $80 per kilowatt-hour at the pack level "well before the end of the decade," Drake said."

    That is quite a goal, both the annual production and battery cost. I want 300 kwh in any truck that I buy.

    I wonder how much the range drops when you're towing a 5,000 pound trailer with your F-150 Lightning?

  56. Alan says:

    >> We, the USA, have no vested interest in the Ukraine.

    Other than being "The Leader of the Free World." Right??

  57. ~jim says:

    Other than being "The Leader of the Free World." Right??

    If that's sarcasm, then you're demonstrating an inability to articulate a position. Spell it out! Say what you mean and mean what you say. Innuendo and obfuscation muddy the waters.

    1
    1
  58. Greg Norton says:

    Hard to defend yourself when, every year, you are required to take the code of conduct training and sign off that you've read it. MDs are tasked with chasing stragglers and most hate the 'busy work.'

    I speak from experience when I say that the paperwork is often lost. When fired for a policy violation, make sure they produce the piece of paper saying that you received the training.

    I suspect lost paperwork is the reason HR from the previous previous job simply didn't show at my TWC tribunal hearing.

  59. Nightraker says:

    I Want A Hippopotamus For Christmas

    https://youtu.be/vuNH4kpuobc

    1
  60. lynn says:

    >> "Ford expects to reduce EV battery cell cost to $80 per kilowatt-hour at the pack level "well before the end of the decade," Drake said."

    That is quite a goal, both the annual production and battery cost. I want 300 kwh in any truck that I buy.

    I wonder how much the range drops when you're towing a 5,000 pound trailer with your F-150 Lightning?

    I figure a 300 kwh battery in an electric two motor (one front, one back) F-150 will get you 600 miles unloaded and 300 miles pulling a trailer.  Less on the highway (no regen braking) and more in town.

    They are putting four 250 kwh batteries in the 18 wheeler Tesla trucks and getting one mile per 2 kwh. 500 miles for 1,000 kwh (1 mwh). Tesla has a dozen or so 18 electric wheelers running between Freemont, CA and the Nevada battery plant each day.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giga_Nevada

  61. lynn says:

    I Want A Hippopotamus For Christmas

    https://youtu.be/vuNH4kpuobc

    That is good but this is better

    Vince Vance & The Valiants – All I Want for Christmas Is You

         https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w8HWHd0EYJA

    1
  62. drwilliams says:

    @Lynn

    We, the USA, have no vested interest in the Ukraine.

    As discussed above, we brokered a deal based on our guarantee of security. Note that Russia was in on the deal.

    Obama crapped on our rep when he abandoned Libya to the mob.

    Earlier, Carter crapped on our rep when he abandoned The Shah of Iran.

    Plugs thinks both those losers are heroes.

    Best possible scenario is if the Ukraine comes out and admits they kept a couple "just in case", and pledges to use them. It's also the worst possible scenario, because if the government of Ukraine has been paying attention, they'd have one in CONUS ready for a ground detonation 30km WNW of the White House.

    None of those Democratic crap artists ever believed the last eight words of the Declaration of Independence. Plugs probably can't remember even the first three.

  63. nick flandrey says:

    I used a hardware mouse "jiggler" to keep computers awake while I was working on their projected displays.  Freaking corporate accounts, I'd log in, and by the time I got to the projection room, the stupid thing would be logged out again.   HATE corp IT departments from that time.

    (the jiggler was a USB stick that would move the mouse pointer a few pixels every so often.  You really didn't even notice it moving.)

    n

  64. Nick Flandrey says:

    Crashing hard, need to sleep in my own bed.

    'nite y'all.

    n

  65. JimB says:

    Ray, even though the estate might be small, please consider hiring a CPA. In my experience, the good ones don't think like us, and seem to be able to cope with all the complex regulations with ease. It might not seem cost effective, but you could save yourself a lot of grief.

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