Tuesday, September 16, 2014
Aerial view of US Navy ships arriving for the Rose Festival in downtown Portland. Click to embiggenate.
We are looking north, sometime in the 1930's. The website claims 1935, but several commentators dispute that. The bridges in view are, from front to back, the second Morrison Bridge, the Burnside Bridge, and the Steel Bridge. All the buildings along the waterfront on the West side, where the Navy is moored, were torn down to make way for the Tom McCall Waterfront Park in the 1970's. Via Post Hip Scott. Map here.
P.S. 'Commenter' is not a real word, so all the people who commented on the original site have been upgraded to 'commentators'.
Battle at Soufflot barricades at Rue Soufflot Street, Paris, France, on 24 June 1848, Horace Vernet.
"The Revolutions of 1848, known in some countries as the Spring of Nations, Springtime of the Peoples or the Year of Revolution, were a series of political upheavals throughout Europe in 1848. It remains the most widespread revolutionary wave in European history, but within a year, reactionary forces had regained control, and the revolutions collapsed." - WikipediaSounds a little like what's going on in the Middle East and North Africa. Inspired by a post by Comrade Misfit that mentioned an apocryphal quote by Alexandre Auguste Ledru-Rollin.
Monday, September 15, 2014
Looks real, well, except for the when the wing comes off. I have heard of some sport plane crashes caused by structural failure and they seemed to occur because the airframe was subjected to forces greater than it was designed for. This can happen in high stress situations, like pulling up out a dive. That does not appear to be the situation when the airplane in this video loses its wing. Also, I saw a similar video once before, so I checked.
Snopes verified that it is a fake. Well done, almost believable, but still a fake. Via Post Hip Scott.
Sometimes it seems like our whole world is held together with screws. Screws can be very handy, and since the advent of the power screwdriver, they have found even more applications. Drywall used to be put up with nails, but nowadays it is more likely to be installed using screws.
Screws come in all shapes and sizes and they are cheaper than dirt. The larger the quantity you buy, the lower the unit price. If you want a railroad-car's worth they might be free.
Oftentimes when doing repairs around the house I will need a few screws. Generally my requirements are not too specific. They need to be long enough and strong enough to do the job, so I will go rummaging through my collections to see if I can find something that will work. About half the time I do, which is great because it means I can get on with the job with having to interrupt my project for a trip to the store where I will have to spend (gasp!) money.
I was cleaning up in the basement this weekend, gathering tools and old computer parts from all the odd places where they had been squirreled away, and I came across a box of small computer screws that my youngest had abandoned. I'm looking at it and it's a jumbled mess. I hate looking for stuff. If I need something that I have I want to be able to lay my hands on it, so a box of screws like this is worse than useless - it's a time trap, just waiting for the unwary to get sucked into pawing through it looking for the one screw they need, the one screw that isn't there.
I decide I will sort these screws out. I spend some time at it and I get them sorted into a dozen or so different categories, or maybe two dozen. And then I look at what I've got, and what I've got isn't pretty. Half of them are the screws that are used to secure add-in cards in the computer. Anyone who has every done any work on a computer undoubtedly has a pile of these. Another bunch are not screws per se, but special little widgets used on one specific brand of computer. Another bunch are too small for me to ever want to use. If you need them, you need them, but they are so small that working with them is a real pain. We're talking tweezers and spit on the end of your finger.
On occasion I have bought screw assortments where there are a number of specific screws, all selected for being useful for home repairs, sorted into separate compartments. These have proven to be very useful, even unto the very last piece that I forced into an application never intended by the inventor.
What I am wondering is how many of these screws are worth hanging onto? I have a bunch of old wood screws that require a a straight bladed screwdriver that I doubt I will ever use. They generally seem to be the wrong length, and I always prefer Philips head screws because I can use my drill with them. You can use a power screwdriver with straight blade screw heads, but it is not as convenient.
WWII RAF Ammo belt assembly
I liken this business of sorting screws to assembling ammunition into belts for use in a machine gun. Tedious work, especially in peacetime. But if you ever need to use that machine gun, you will be glad you spent the time to assemble those belts.
"In her book The Woman's Second Guide To Adulthood, former Ms. editor Suzanne Braun Levine writes about the brain changes that occur in people past fifty. Post-fifty brains undergo a growth spurt in the medial temporal lobe, the area associated with emotional learning. This growth, present at no other time apart from during adolescence, was discovered entirely by accident.Via Dustbury.
"Dr Francine Bene was researching schizophrenia at Harvard Medical School, when she discovered two significant increases in myelin growth (the fatty nerve fibre coating that speeds up connection between nerve cells); the first 100% leap happens during teenagehood, with the second 50% ("a huge leap") increase occurs during middle age. Experience becomes wisdom."
I went looking for picture to accompany this post, but I didn't have much luck. Google "emotional learning" and you get a tsunami of educational posters for children. Google "myelin" and you get icky biological images. So we fall back and punt.
Can you believe that this song came out in 1975?