Intel's Ronler Acres Plant

Silicon Forest
If the type is too small, Ctrl+ is your friend

Sunday, July 31, 2022

Juvenile Justice

Juvenile Justice | Official Trailer | Netflix [ENG SUB]
The Swoon

Another Korean courtroom drama like Extraordinary Attorney Woo, like that show we have an intelligent female lawyer. This one isn't disabled, but she is carrying some deep dark secret that I expect will be revealed eventually. We've already had a mystery man from her past show up, and now in episode 7 a judge from some legal case (she was involved in years ago) has shown up.

The shows digs into a series of juvenile cases. The first one was a doozy and our girl proved her mettle. She is definitely a hard ass, some might even call her a royal bitch, but she knows the law and she knows the difference between right and wrong and by gum she's going to get to the bottom of it, whether it's problems with homes for juvenile offenders or stomping on true love by prosecuting the "gigolo bastard" who seduced a retarded girl.

Tonight's case was about high schoolers cheating on exams and I kind of wonder why they even bother to bring it to court. I suspect they put in the show to show how crazy the competition is to get admitted into a university. That's mostly what the show is about - problems with Korean society, and it's all the parents fault that their kids are getting in trouble.

F-15 Eagle 50th Anniversary

NASA F-15 Eagle

The F-15 was originally built by McDonnell-Douglas, but that company has now been absorbed by Boeing.  1200 of these planes have been built. Top speed is Mach 2.5.

The picture comes from a post on Defence Blog which included this line:
The F-15’s manufacturing process has also evolved over the years to include digital design and automation and tooling, including revolutionary full-size determinant assembly advanced manufacturing processes.

"full-size determinant assembly advanced manufacturing processes"? What the heck is that? Boeing explains:

Determinant assembly is a process that allows for quicker assembly by using features of the parts, such as drilled holes, to quickly align components without the use of additional tooling to aid with alignment. Lego toys or an Erector set are simple examples of determinant assembly.

It's kind of obvious to anyone who has ever built anything. I suspect Boeing is so hide-bound that it required an internal civil war to implement even the most obvious improvements, and since it was such an ordeal to get people to start using it, they had to dress it up with some fancy language.

YouTube Music Videos

I'm not quite sure what prompted it, but I've been compiling playlists of all the music videos I have posted. I have got the most recent five years completed, though the latest is obviously not complete.

So I've got the earliest and the latest but there are a bunch in the middle that I still haven't done. What might have prompted this is I will have a vague memory of a tune that I am sure I have posted but I can't recall just what it is. These lists should make it a little easier to track it down. I have a bunch of other YouTube playlists that I have constructed but that I never use. I probably should delete them.

Most of the tunes are modern popular music but there are a few oddballs in there. If you decide to try one of these playlists and a song comes that you don't like, there is the next button in the bottom of the video frame, right next to the pause button.

I think there is a way to transfer YouTube playlists to YouTube Music or maybe it just happens automagically.

Curious thing about YouTube is that videos that are marked as being for kids cannot be added to a playlist. There were a few of those, I listed them in the playlist's description.

Some people who post videos to YouTube disable embedding. Scallywags is what they are.

I've put up 9247 posts in 14 years. I only tagged 503 as being music videos, which is not quite one a week. I have also tagged 1184 as videos, which means I have posted a non-music video roughly twice a week.

I probably could have written a program to compile these playlists, but I'm not sure I could write the program any faster than compiling the list manually, well if you can call point-and-click manual. Besides this way I get to run all the material through my hands so I have a better idea of what I have.

Alex Jones

Alex Jones - Play Nice Productions

Variety has a review of the movie Alex's War by Owen Gleiberman. Just in case you don't know who Alex Jones is, the review opens with this:

At the start of “Alex’s War,” a documentary about Alex Jones, the infamous talk-news conspiracist guru of InfoWars is described by assorted media outlets as “a performance artist,” “paranoia porn,” and — in the words of John Oliver — “the Walter Cronkite of shrieking bat-shit guerrilla clowns.” All of which, of course, is accurate.

It's a well written review and gives a little insight into cults and conspiracy theories. Great stuff.

Saturday, July 30, 2022

Unruly Passengers

Unruly Passengers per week per 10,000 flights since January 2021

Seems like unruly passengers make the news on a regular basis, like several times a year. This happens when someone gets drunk or mad and starts throwing punches and gets tackled by the air crew or other passengers. They eventually get hauled off of the airplane by the police and taken to the pokey.

This chart shows it is not a rare event but a somewhat common occurrences, well it is if you can call one percent of all commercial flights common.

However, look at the chart. The number of incidents is very high at the beginning of 2021 and has been tapering off ever since. But notice the very low number at the extreme left of the of the chart. That is not an artifact but is in fact representative of the preceding 25 years.

This chart does not use the same criteria as the one at top. This one shows the total number of investigations for the year. The number of flights has varied over the years. They were reduced during the COVID lockdown and the number of investigations reflects that. However, the number was still at a fairly low level. Curious how it jumped up in January 2021. What could have happened to make it jump up like that? Well, Biden became President in that month. You don't suppose that had anything to do with it, do you? Were people losing their minds because Zuckerberg stole the election?

Thursday, July 28, 2022

Air Support in a Backpack: The Switchblade

Air Support in a Backpack: The Switchblade

He gives a history of AeroVironment and the drones they have made. If the video is too long, you can read  the Asianometry post. That's what I did. I've put up several posts about drones including one that mentions AeroVironment.

The switchblade name confused me for a minute. Wasn't there a drone that had swords that extended to kill people without the use of explosives? Well, sort of, except it wasn't a drone, it was special version of a Hellfire missile, the AGM-114R9X.

Tracking The 'Sword Bombs' Of America's Drone War: Newsy + Bellingcat

Hey, look Ma, I'm a gypsy

Gypsy Woman – 1886. Nikolai Yaroshenko

I must be, I can predict the future (ya, right, kid). RT tells us about the Forward Party, a new US political party started by Andrew Yang and Christine Todd Whitman that hopes to weaken the grip of the establishment scumbags. I was just wishing for that a month ago. We shall see how they do.

It's all very well to have principles and to stand by them, but bullshit is what gets you elected. I suspect the problem with our two main stinking parties is that they have been immersed in politics for so long they no longer can tell the difference between principles and bullshit.

Tuesday, July 26, 2022

What Ever Happened To My Rock And Roll

Black Rebel Motorcycle Club - What Ever Happened To My Rock And Roll (Punk Song)
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club

Writing my last post, I went looking through my old stuff and I came across a post that was missing a picture and a video. I try to fix these when I find them. The picture wasn't too tough, I had a local copy. The video was a little odd. Looking at the html version of that post, I picked out the YouTube URL and used it to open a new tab. It gives me a standard YouTube page with the message Video unavailable, but it still gives me the title of the video. I use that title to find another copy and here we go. Usually don't have that kind of luck, the video disappears and narry a trace can be found. 

I hadn't listened to this tune in a long time, but boy did I miss it. My desktop speakers weren't good enough. I could have gone upstairs and played it on our home stereo except everyone else is asleep so I got out my headphones.. I have two pair. I don't know why, but I do. I hardly ever use them, but tonight they really paid off. You don't suppose the nth beer had anything to do with it, do you?

Funny, I have been perfectly content listening to all kinds of music on my desktop speakers until tonight. What happened? Did my conference call with my stockbrokers and a new tax person somehow affect my attitude? I mean, my financial situation didn't change, and I didn't really learn anything significant. Could it be that someone said that that big fat tax bill wasn't all that big and fat compared to the hassle we'd have to go through to get around it? That's something I'm still learning. Sometimes it is  better, cheaper and easier to pay the bill than to jump through all the hoops necessary to get out of it.


Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor (1500-1558)
Bernard van Orley, 1519

I just finished reading The Verge by Patrick Wyman. The subtitle is Reformation, Renaissance, and Forty Years that Shook The World 1490-1530. It's about how Martin Luther, the printing press, firearms and financing all came together to launch Europe on a trajectory that would see them take over the world. He talks about some prominent people and all the goings-on, and the goings-on was basically war. It's basically a chronicle of the wars fought in Europe during this time period.

I'm reading this and I''m thinking this is exactly the same kind of shit we've got going on know. Fucking morons shooting off their mouths, throwing their weight around and going to war. We worship peace, or so we say, but we keep going to war. I'm beginning to think peace is an anomaly. Don't waste any time hoping for peace because it ain't gonna do any good. We're going to war whether we want to or not. I'm beginning to think it's congenital.

You can pray for peace. Praying is good, it helps get your mind right. But hoping, that is just a complete waste of time and energy. Instead, figure what you need to do in order to survive. I suspect for most people that means holding down a job and building up your bank account. I think this means becoming part of the mesh of society. It's like you are spread-eagled and hooked hand to hand and foot to foot with a whole wall of similarly arranged people. You are restrained by these links, but at the same time they make you much stronger because we are all working together. Things like fire protection, running water, power, automobiles are all very difficult to procure on your own, but we have all these things at our finger tips because we work together. Of course for most of us, our sole contribution to these things are the taxes and the monthly utility bills we pay.

Perhaps our continued entanglement with society causes a build up of frustration that has to be released and the way we do that is we go to war. I don't know that anyone is consciously controlling this. It might just be instinct. If it is instinct then that raises the question of how is this a survival skill? War kills a lot of people, job lots of people. So going to war means you've got a good chance of dying. Young men are famous for being careless of their lives. I suppose it's just an outgrowth of aggression and aggression comes from hunting. Kind of weird.

The human race is synonymous with The Forever War

P.S. I'm not sure about the use of goings-on. Should it be hyphenated or not? Can you use it as a noun? Should be it be plural, goings-ons? Enquiring minds want to know.

Monday, July 25, 2022


Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company plant under construction near Interstate 17 and Loop 303 in north Phoenix. TSMC

When we dismantled the partitions on the main floor of the new house we saved the doors and cabinets. I was under the impression that we could reuse them when we built the new partitions. Silly me. The girls decided they wanted all new stuff, so now I've got a bunch of perfectly good doors and cabinets that I need to get rid of. I put an ad on Craigslist offering them for free but the only response was from a couple of people who wanted the one louvered door. After a bunch of fiddle farting we finally agreed on a time they could come by and get it, so I drove the 15 miles to hand over this one door.

The person who showed up was a cheerful middle-aged Chinese woman with her equally cheerful sister. They were both wearing dungarees and are totally into doing things on their own. We're talking, I mention I used to work for Intel and she tells me her niece (cousin? daughter? some relative) has recently graduated from school and has gone to work for TSMC (Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company) in Taiwan and will be transferring to their new plant in Phoenix once it is completed. I was surprised to hear this because I thought something like this would be big news, but I hadn't heard a word about it. Probably because I don't follow the correct propaganda, er, news feeds.

TSMC is one of the big three semiconductor manufacturers in the world these days, the other two being Intel  (USA) and Samsung (South Korea). Intel has big plants in central Arizona, New Mexico and well as in Silicon Valley and just down the road from my home in Hillsboro.

I still have rest of the old doors and cabinets. I could have just relegated them to the dumpster, but Portland has a place the deals in reclaimed building materials, so they will probably accept them. All I have to do it haul them down there. It's funny how much perfectly useful stuff goes to the landfill because people can't be bothered with it, while at the same time we have people who spend hours or even years restoring a piece of junk.

Sunday, July 24, 2022

Combat Mindset

Gunfight at OK Corral

Borepatch has a post about the psychology of shooting under fire. People get all wrapped up in the technical aspects of firearms and accuracy in shooting, but the most important part of self defense is being able to remain cool under fire. Not everyone can do that, and as near as I can tell, it's not something you can figure out in advance. I suppose live fire training might help, but when push comes to shove some of the most battle hardened guys are liable to flake out. You catch a guy on an off day and he is just as liable to come unglued as return fire.

Saturday, July 23, 2022

More Consolidated PBY Catalina

PBY Catalina Tune-up

I don't know, but I suspect those two guys (there are two of them, you can see another pair of legs dangling, presumably from the guy sitting on the other side of the engine), these two guys are trying to diagnose some kind of a problem. Examining the engine while it was not running didn't produce any evidence of the problem, so they fired up the engines to see if they could figure it out. I suspect the seats are part of the normal maintenance rigging, whether they are on land or water. During the war, I wouldn't be surprised if they the left the aircraft sitting in the water instead of driving up on the land every time they landed. Shoot, some places probably didn't have any ramps onto the land.

Notice the big bulb attached to the top of the cockpit. It's a radome which means this is probably from 1945.

Previous Catalina post.

I came across this picture on my one of the sites I regularly visit, but I failed to make a note of it and now I don't know where I found it.


Pistols with Optical Sights

Tamara Keel has a story up on Recoil where in I found this gem:

The average flashlight wasn’t all that great well into fairly recent times; Gen X’ers and older Millennials can probably remember camping trips with cheap plastic or sheet metal flashlights that held a couple of C- or D-cell batteries, were about half as bright as a dead firefly, and didn’t have enough battery life for a night of sneaking out of the tent and exploring the woods looking for a good place to tell ghost stories.

That's pretty dang dim.

The Western World's Leaders Are Insane

Policy Disease is Destroying Europe

I'm not the only one who wonders what the West's leaders are thinking:

So the question recurs. What in the world is wrong with these people? Are they deliberately trying to sabotage society and even a minimum level of prosperity? - David Stockman on Europe’s Economic Suicide…

His article is clear, well written and isn't filled with inscrutable finance jargon. 

Thursday, July 21, 2022

Straits of Tiran

Ship passing through the Straits of Tiran - Amr Abdallah Dalsh/Al Reuters

Aljazeera tells us that the UN is withdrawing their peacekeeping force from the Straits of Tiran and installing cameras to keep an eye on things, so maybe things have calmed down here. But just where are the Straits of Tiran? So off to Google Maps we go.

The Straits of Tiran are at the southern end of the Gulf of Aqaba where it joins the Red Sea. It's not a vital shipping lane, unless you are Israel or Jordan who both have ports at the northern end of the Gulf. Jordan has a large oil terminal there, which might be where the ship in the first photo is coming from.

I was surprised by Jordan's presence there. I shouldn't have been, Jordan forms Israel's entire eastern border except the most northern portion, but you never hear anything about Jordan, it's like it doesn't exist.

Straits of Tiran, Tiran and Sanafir Islands

The Straits of Tiran are narrow, only about two miles wide and there are reefs in the middle. The islands look pretty desolate, but on the western (Egyptian) shore we have a bunch of resorts.

Party at Jackson Reef
Island in the background is the same one as in the first photo

I am looking at some street view images hoping to find a view of the pier that is in the first photo on this post, and this pops up. At first glance it looks like a typical drunken boat party, but if you take in the whole 360 degree view you see that the boats are almost entirely empty.

Divers at Jackson Reef

Turns out they are dive boats for tourists from the resorts and all the people are underwater. The sea life on the reefs is pretty spectacular.


I wasn't able to locate the pier on Google Maps until I realized that there were lines crossing a large green area adjacent to the shore and I realized that it was shallow water, not land, and those lines were light duty piers suitable for people to walk on, not for freight.

P.S. I thought I had looked at this part of the world once before but I couldn't remember why. Then I clicked on the place mark on the resort and all was revealed. The Super Tucanos stopped there on their round the world delivery flight.

Good News, Bad News

Good Times Bad Times (Remaster)
Led Zeppelin

suspects being addicted to the news might be as bad as being addicted to cigarettes. I understand what he's talking about because I have a bit of an addiction to the news as well. Skimming through the headlines on Feedly is part of my daily routine and inevitably I come across something so incredibly stupid that it gets my ire up, sometimes enough so that I feel compelled to dump my ire onto the keyboard.

What kind of stupid shit gets my ire up? The idiots running the governments in Europe. The president of Hungary seems to be only one with his head screwed on straight and that might be because he is the only one not getting a zillion dollars a minute from Uncle Sam.

Could it be that all of the governments in Europe are bent on being kicked out of office? Because that is surely what is going to happen if they continue on their mad course of being green and sanctioning Russia. The only question is whether they will be kicked out before of after famine arrives and they start freezing in the dark.

Tuesday, July 19, 2022


I keep trying to understand what is going on with our government on the world stage. I have several simple theories like incompetence, stupidity and greed. There is a chance that all this mayhem is part of some well thought out strategy, but if this strategy is to crush, or at least deflate Russia, well, I think the first three theories can be applied here as well.

Since I'm still not sure whether there is some master plan or not, I guess I'm falling back on psychology. So now I'm working on brain detection. A person may be able to spout a lot of information, but that doesn't make them smart. If they're smart they start piecing that information together and they're going to start seeing connections.

What makes these jackasses act like jackasses? What the heck is it? Is it a disease, a genetic upbringing, a lax upbringing, a harsh unbringing?

JMSmith lights the way:

When Hypocrites are Put to the Test, They are Exposed, Found Wanting, and Fail

“The long-awaited Texas House report into the May 24 shooting at Robb Elementary in Uvalde  . . . noted a massive but inept response from heavily armed local, state and federal law enforcement.”

Jim Vertuno “Uvalde Report: Huge Response, Little Action,” Associated Press (July 19, 2022)

“Some have considered the larger part of mankind in the light of actors, as personating characters no more their own, and to which in fact they have no better title, than the player hath to be earnest thought the king or emperor whom he represents.  Thus the hypocrite many be said to be a player; and indeed the Greeks called them both by one and the same name.” 

Henry Fielding, The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling (1747)

The words “massive” and “inept” seem to fit just about everything Americans do nowadays.  Our response to covid was certainly massive, and it was mostly inept; much of it amounting to hugely expensive “covid theater.”  Our response to radical Islam was massive, and if not always inept, it was very far from deft or dexterous.  Out response to the Ukraine War has so far been very costly and a complete failure.  The bungled response to the Uvalde shooter is of a piece with this melancholy pattern.  The Keystone cops who dithered and fretted outside the deadly classroom lacked nothing in the way of weaponry; but they lacked—egregiously lacked—the requisite virtues of courage, intelligence and resolution. 

Weaponry without these virtues is just costly tinsel and toys.

Money does not make clowns into cops.  Gear does not make wimps into warriors.  Books do not make simpletons into scholars.  Stained glass and surplices do not make mediocrities into men of God.  But extravagant expenditures can disguise the clowns, the wimps, the simpletons, and the mediocrities—disguise them until they are put to the test.

And when such impostors are put to the test, they are exposed, found wanting, and fail.

* * * * *

Hypocrisy is as old as humanity, the first hypocrite being Cain when he acted as if he did not know the whereabouts of his brother Able.  When Jesus excoriated the scribes and pharisees for hypocrisy, he meant they were actors who were playing the parts of pious men.  The priests in the temple were likewise pretending to be priests.  Herod’s children were pretending to be kings and queens.  Scripture does not tell us if Jerusalem cops of were pretending to be cops, but I suspect they may have been when I read:

“Again they tried to arrest him, but he escaped from their hands” ( John 10: 39).

Clowns! It seems that everyone in ancient Judea was a hypocrite, a phony, a fraud.  Cashing paychecks was the only thing they did in earnest and for real.

Well, it seems that modern America has picked up where ancient Judea left off.  Who knows how many Americans are only pretending to do their jobs?  And the illusion of industry is everywhere sustained by a surfeit of costly gear.  This is not just the weaponry that we see everywhere toted by clowns that are pretending to be cops.  It is all the stage props and stage sets with which professional posers create their illusions of industry and their simulacra of skill.

Until, that is, they are put to the test, found wanting, and fail.

South Korea KF-21 Jet Fighter Prototype

South Korean KF-21 Jet Fighter makes first flight


Sarah Baartman Hall (formerly Memorial Hall) at The University of Cape Town
[Mike Hutchings/Reuters]

Tafi Mhaka is calling for the adoption of Kiswahili as an official language of all the countries in sub-Saharan Africa. Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania have already done so. Most Africa countries adopted French, English or Portuguese, the languages of the European colonizers as their official language. At the time, it was probably the expedient thing to do, but times have changed. Note he doesn't say anything about removing the official status of the European languages, only that they add Kiswahili. 

Near as I can tell, Kiswahili is just another one of these respellings of Swahili, Beijing instead of Peking, or Kyiv instead of Kiev. You can call your foreign names anything you want, but why can't they leave the English spellings alone? We aren't going to pronounce it correctly no matter how you spell it, and it just means more time and effort will be wasted on replacing perfectly cromulent words with new and different words that are no better than the originals.

One line stuck out in Tafi's essay:
It didn’t help matters that at the time everyone marvelled at then-Prime Minister Robert Mugabe’s impeccable command of English and observers in the West regarded him as “one of the world’s great orators”. 
Robert Mugabe might have been a great speaker (the Wikipedia article uses the word 'speech' twelve times), but I think he was few marbles short of a full deck. In particular I suspect he was missing the economics marble.

Sarah Baartman Hall at the University of Cape Town
Look at those stairs. There must be a zillion steps.

I was surprised by the picture of Memorial Hall that accompanied Tafi's essay. I know I shouldn't be surprised, but I was. It makes sense that there would be a very English building on the campus, I mean the English ran this place for a long time. On the other hand the images that South Africa brings to mind are either a thriving metropolis or miles of shantytowns, not staid enclaves of academia.

Saartjie Baartman, aka Sarah Baartman, 1810

Which brings us to Sarah Baartman. The University of Cape Town renamed Memorial Hall to Sarah Baartman Hall back in 2018. Sarah Baartman (c.1789– 29 December 1815) was exhibited as a freak show attraction in 19th-century Europe under the name Hottentot Venus. She was exhibited for a few years but was eventually discarded. She died at the age of 26 in Paris.

Monday, July 18, 2022


Capitani: Season 2 | Official English Trailer | Netflix Original Series
Entertainment Reports

We watched season one last year. Since then Luc Capitani has spent several years in prison and is now out and about doing security for a brothel. There are a bunch of women in his life - the brothel owner, his sister, a cop he had some sort of relationship, another woman he also had a relationship with who has become a drug dealer, and a handler from some kind of secret government agency.

The best part is you get to see what daily life in a brothel is actually like. I don't think TV can properly convey just what it's like, but at least this show is trying. Paying for sex might be a reasonable thing to do, and maybe if you hung out with people who did that you might accept it as normal. For me, it's just too weird.


Sidecutters Closed

This style of pliers has been known to me as sidecutters since forever. There is a cutting blade on one side of the jaws and for me that was a good enough excuse to earn them the name.

Sidecutters Open

At some point I realized they also had cutters built into either side of the joint. You can see the cutter's notch when the pliers are open, like in the above photo. These cutters depend on shearing action instead of a sharpened blade and they are closer to the pivot point so you get more leverage which means they are good for cutting heavier gauge wire. It just occurred to me that these cutters built into either side of the joint is the reason this style of pliers are called sidecutters. Actually, I may have figured this out once before and forgotten about it.

I picked these pliers up a long time ago, probably out of a bargain bin somewhere. They are small, only about six inches long. Serious sidecutters are more like eight inches long. This pair has been relegated to barbeque duty for a long time. Last week I left them out for several nights and the dew got to them and they rusted up tight. I was able to work them loose with some elbow grease and 3-in-1 oil and they are almost like new, except for being ugly, but good enough for the barbeque grill.

Kind of odd that pliers are called a pair. Do we also call scissors a pair? Or maybe that's old hat, maybe no one does that anymore, maybe the term is just 'the pliers' instead of 'a pair of pliers'.

Sunday, July 17, 2022



From the YouTube blurb:
A huge 11 mile comet will fly by Earth in July and you will be able to see it. . . . Astronomers first spotted the comet in 2017 using the Pan-STARRS survey instrument in Hawaii. At the time, they said it was the farthest active inbound comet they’d yet seen. It was between the orbits of Saturn and Uranus when they first saw it. Now it’s in the inner solar system, with closest approach to Earth on July 14. The comet will be closest to the sun several months later, on December 19, 2022. With a small telescope, you should be able to spot the comet throughout the summer.

Being able to watch this live is very cool. So some telescope somewhere has a digital camera attached to it, and the camera is attached to the internet so we're getting this right from the zillion dollar source. Not only that, if this show goes on 24 hours a day, they must have three or four telescopes devoted to this project scattered around the globe. It's just kind of amazing that it actually works.

Cell Phone Picture of TV Screen

This video popped up on the TV this evening. It was heavily pixelated on the TV (above photo). It's much smoother on the computer monitor. I suppose it's due to the technology. The computer monitor is a typical flat scrteen, the TV is a plasma set that is at least ten, maybe 20 years old. 

Having this video just pop up like that was also pretty cool. It didn't actually pop up, it was just the first video of the bunch that show up when you open the YouTube page. I guess I can thank Google's tracking algorithm for suggesting it to me. I haven't heard about it anywhere else.

Update next day added photo of TV screen.

Tu-114 - the most Soviet airliner in the world

Tu-114 - the most Soviet airliner in the world
Skyships Eng

Moscow, New York, Cuba, Murmansk, Japan, this airplane got around. It might have been luxurious, but it had to be gawd awful noisy. I wouldn't be surprised if they offered earmuffs to the passengers.

YouTube blurb:
Tupolev Tu-114 is a Soviet long-range turboprop airliner, developed by the Tupolev design bureau in the 1950s.
At the time of its creation, it was the largest passenger aircraft in the world. Having lost this title to the Boeing 747, it is still considered the largest civil turboprop aircraft.
During the design process, the Tu-114 was based on the Tu-95 strategic bomber. The passenger plane took the wing and engines from it, however, most of the other elements and systems were specially developed for it. Due to its impressive size and weight, the Tu-114 incorporated a significant number of advanced solutions in the field of passenger comfort, which made it one of the most luxurious Soviet aircraft.
In total, 33 aircraft were manufactured, actively flying on domestic and international flights until the mid-1970s.


The Scratching Post has a post up about our current condition.

Does Anything Need To Work?

I really like this bit about the morons in charge:

I've said it before and I'll say it again, there is no plan. There is no plan. Of plans, there are none. The box of plans is empty and the cupboard wherein plans are kept is similarly barren of plans.

There's no plan.

I've linked to The Scratching Post before.

Saturday, July 16, 2022

This Proxy War Has No Exit Strategy

I really wish I knew who is charge. Nothing the Biden administration is doing makes any sense to me. Could it really just be incompetence, bullheadedness and stupidity? I suppose that's what happens when you give idiots a big pile of money.

This Proxy War Has No Exit Strategy by Caitlin Johnstone shows just rotten the current situation is.  Here's the opening three paragraphs.

The International Committee of the Democratic Socialists of America has released a statement opposing the US government’s ongoing proxy war in Ukraine, saying the billions being funneled into the military-industrial complex “at a time when ordinary Americans are struggling to pay for housing, groceries, and fuel” is “a slap in the face for working people.” The statement advocates a negotiated settlement for peace, saying continuing to pour weapons into the country will “needlessly prolong the war, resulting in more civilian deaths” and that it “risks escalating and widening the war — up to and including nuclear war.”

In response to this entirely reasonable and moderate position, the DSA is currently being raked over the coals with accusations of Kremlin loyalty and facilitation of murder and bloodshed by blue-checkmarked narrative managers on Twitter. This is because the only acceptable positions for anyone of significant influence to have about this war range from supporting continuing current proxy warfare operations to initiating a direct hot war between NATO and Russia.

That’s how narrow the permissible spectrum of debate has been shrunk regarding this conflict: status quo hawkish to omnicidal hawkish. Anything outside that spectrum gets framed as radical extremism. As Noam Chomsky said: “The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum — even encourage the more critical and dissident views. That gives people the sense that there’s free thinking going on, while all the time the presuppositions of the system are being reinforced by the limits put on the range of the debate.”

She goes on at length, but the opening was enough for me. The bit about the Democratic Socialists gave me pause, but if they are opposed to the government's support of Ukraine, they can't be all bad.

Noam Chomsky also gave me pause. He has appeared here before, several years ago, and I was also hesitant back then, but I checked and he passed the smell test.

Update the next day. Added link to Caitlin's story that I forgot.

Grumman Albatross

Grumman HU-16 Albatross (N51ZD)

Didn't I just post a picture of a Grumman flying boat? Yes, I did, but it was a different model. Just how many different flying boats did Grumman make? A whole family, evidently:

Happy Hour Hoot


Via one of the kids.

The Fortress - Korean Movie

The Fortress Trailer #1 (2017) | Movieclips Indie
Rotten Tomatoes Indie

Here we are in the 17th century, 100 years after the whaling ship San Juan de Pasajes, this time on the other side of the world. The Qin and Ming Empires have divided China between them. Korea (Joseon) was formerly allied with Ming, but Qin have pushed their way in so Joseon and Ming no longer have a shared border. They are divided by Qin, and Qin is offended that Joseon is allied with Ming, so we have an invasion.

The movie alternates between battles and high level discussions amongst the leaders. The Koreans are on edge because the invading Qin army is ten times the size of their own. The minister of defense is an aging blowhard without much in the way of brains. He's going to get them all killed if someone doesn't put a stop to him pretty quickly.

The way the crowd of courtiers starts howling for blood when they hear something they don't like reminds of nothing so much as the antics that have been going on in Washington D. C. since, well, since forever.

Nam-Han Fortress Battle Scene (The Fortress) Korea vs China

The Koreans have muskets. Since the minister of defense is such a stupid bull, someone else probably instigated their acquisition, most likely the King. How accurate are these props? Wikipedia says muskets have been in common use since the 16th century, so for a hundred years before this battle, which should give them enough time to migrate from Europe to Korea.

Wikipedia has a page about the fortress, a very real place.

2 hour movie on Netflix, in Korean with English subtitles.

San Juan de Pasajes

Bayou Renaissance Man has a good post up about 16th century Basque sailors. Seems their beverage of choice was hard apple cider. The advantage it had over rum, which is what the British used, was you didn't need to add Vitamin-C, apple cider already has Vitamin-C. The Brits, you will recall, used limes.

A diver inspects the San Juan wreck, connected to a hose supplying hot water to endure in the cold water of Red Bay.
I'd never heard of piping in hot water to keep a diver warm. Makes sense though.

Back in 1978, the wreck of the 16th century San Juan de Pasajes was found off the coast of Canada and they started an archaeological exploration of the site. The wreck was in such good shape it inspired some people in Pasaia, Spain to build a replica.

Laying out the template for an angle piece on a natural fork

Lower section of the hull

Pasaia and Irun, Spain

I'm looking at a map of this place, and I think 'wait a minute', we've been here before. Yes, with Captain Coignet and the Storks. Irun is Captain Coignet's town. Both Irun and Pasaia are on the north coast of Spain very near the border with France.

Friday, July 15, 2022

More Fun with Numbers

I've been kicking this idea around for a while, and I should probably put some numbers to it and see if it's even feasible.

The basic idea is to use a linear accelerator to launch a stream of iron particles at very high velocities, like half the speed of light, and use that to generate thrust to propel a spaceship. A little fooling with the rocket equation shows that with an exhaust velocity that high you should easily be able to reach the speed of light. The rocket equation doesn't take relativity into account, but the Newtonian math at least  sounds promising.

If you were to accelerate at one gravity for one year you would reach the speed of light, at least in Newtons universe. So boost for one year, coast for two or three, turn around and use your particle beam thruster to slow down till you reach Alpha Centauri. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy.

There are all kinds of problems with this idea, but the first one that came to me is the reaction mass. How many tons of iron particles would you need? I dunno, how about a million? Suppose you got your reaction mass in BBs, how many BBs would you need? And how fast would you need to feed them into your particle accelerator?

To the Bat-sheet, Robin. I took the idea I used last time and expanded it to use named variables. It makes it a little cumbersome to display in Bloggers narrow format, but we'll give it a try.

As you can see, that stream of BBs would need to be flying into order to shoot the entire one million tons worth in one year. Even if we were to draw it out to ten years, it would still be traveling at rifle bullet speeds. Perhaps we should look at using cannonballs instead of BBs.

Naming all the constants was a little annoying, but I think it makes it easier to understand and verify.

P.S. I need to start putting disclaimers on the draft versions of my posts. You start embedding things and Blogger's preview function doesn't always cooperate, so in order to see what it's going to look like, you have to publish it. We'll see if I remember next time.

McDonnell XP-67 Moonbat

McDonnell XP-67 Moonbat | Flaws of an ideal aircraft
Skyships Eng

Ever wonder where giant engineering companies come from? I don't, mostly because I am wrapped up in what's happening now. But they must come from somewhere, right? They don't just spring into existence, fully formed. They got their start somewhere, and now because so many people are connected to the internet and so much more information is available, we are getting more stories about more obscure stuff. Some of those stories, like this one about the origins of the McDonnell Aircraft Corporation, are pretty great.

The McDonnell Aircraft Corporation was an American aerospace manufacturer based in St. Louis, Missouri. The company was founded on July 6, 1939, by James Smith McDonnell, and was best known for its military fighters, including the F-4 Phantom II, and crewed spacecraft including the Mercury capsule and Gemini capsule. McDonnell Aircraft later merged with the Douglas Aircraft Company to form McDonnell Douglas in 1967.

1000 Aircraft Photos has some photos of the Moonbat.


Thursday, July 14, 2022

The Perfect Mother


A very annoying show. We have an 18 year old woman who has moved from her home in Berlin to Paris where she is supposed to be going to school. Something happened and she has gone off the rails, but her mother has no clue. The family seems like they get along. There is something seriously wrong with this situation. Either the daughter is a psychopath (she might be) or her mother is oblivious to what should be obvious clues. Anyway, the daughter has been taking to blackmailing sexual predators. She meets them, has sex with them and then takes GHB, the date rape drug. Now she demands payment or she will go to the police and accuse him or rape. A clever, if risky, ploy. 

The perfect mother has an old boyfriend in Paris whom she abandoned when she fled Paris for Berlin twenty odd years ago. He has since become a lawyer and when the daughter gets in hot water, she asks him for help. They are poking around the shady side of town looking for a drug dealer who might know something about the catastrophe. A couple of thugs take exception to his presence and toss him out of a third story parking garage. He lands on his back on a car and collapses the roof. You might suspect him of being dead, but you'd be wrong. A busted hip and some fractured ribs and in no time at all he's up and hobbling around on a crutch, and not too much after that he's banging the perfect mother. This guy has remarkable powers of recuperation.

Later on we have an illegal immigrant jumping from a bridge to escape the police. He lands on the road and dies. That's two people falling to their death in one show. Oh yeah, there was also the guy who got stabbed to death at the beginning that started this whole catastrophe.

4 one-hour episodes in French & German, I think, with English subtitles.