Saturday, May 31, 2014

Just Human

Question, why are all the major religious tomes written only by men? 
Food for thought don't you think?


BRT has talked about the Robert's SC on numerous occasions as you, my loyal readers know. From Citizens United to Greece NY, the radical decisions authored by this ideological court in direct oposition to the Constitution and our civil rights, has had no equal since the founding of this once great nation. To further support BRT's argument comes a superb Linda Greenhouse NYTimes article titled Polar Vision.

I rest my case.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Isle of Man - Goes Electric

Electric bikes are replacing the gas powered ones at a pace unimagined just one year ago.
 Terrifying fast and quiet, I Sing the Body Electric mode of motorcycle racing has arrived. :)

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Geckskin - Will rock your world :)

BRT has talked about Geckos, small lizards able to climb just about anything using molecular adhesion at atomic level (via van der Waal forces) to attain great "stickiness" yet permitting easy release from same when said gecko moves on to snag another fly. With this knowledge in hand, really smart people from US Mass/Amherst will be introducing a radical new product called Geckskin once they get the manufacturing part down. For yours truly, I can't wait to use this product. 

Spiderman awaits. :)

Surveillance 24/7

Chris Sewell created this awesome pix that a friend of mine, Jean Francois Donne posted on Google+. Without question, surveillance 24/7 is alive and well in a country called America.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

A New Energy Equation

Yours truly has never like lithium ion batteries as they are:
  1. Expensive
  2. Potentially dangerous (ask Boeing about this) 
  3. Take a long time to charge
  4. Have limited recharge capability and are
  5. Environmentally unfriendly
Up to now, there was no viable tech to replace Lithium Ion - until now.

Additionally it experiences very little temperature change during operation. This thermal stability means no threat of thermal runaway in the dual carbon battery, which can lead to an explosion in other advanced batteries. Additionally, there is no threat of overcharge and it can be 100% discharged without causing damage to the battery.

The dual carbon battery enables high-performance, high value products coveted by consumers. The battery is energy dense and could enable a 300-mile range electric vehicle. It also charges 20 times faster than the best lithium ion battery available. 

The dual carbon battery is the first ever high performance battery that meets consumer lifecycle demand, rated for more than 3,000 charge cycles. This means an electric vehicle powered by a dual carbon battery will maintain high power and long life after years of use, retaining resale value.

Seen below is the DC battery. Without question, this is disruptive to the max. :)

One Trick Pony

Not to gloat but BRT did say fracking was a short term solution to a long term problem, a fact big oil is unwilling to admit even though the predicted shale boom for CA is now a bust with more bad news to follow as fracking wells don't last very long due to the fact natural gas is just that, a gas, something evanescent, something totally different from the sweet crude gushers that issued forth from Texas back in the day.

Chesapeake Energy’s (CHK) Serenity 1-3H well near Oklahoma City came in as a gusher in 2009, pumping more than 1,200 barrels of oil a day and kicking off a rush to drill that extended into Kansas. Now the well produces less than 100 barrels a day, state records show. Serenity’s swift decline sheds light on a dirty secret of the oil boom: It may not last. Shale wells start strong and fade fast, and producers are drilling at a breakneck pace to hold output steady. In the fields, this incessant need to drill is known as the Red Queen, after the character in Through the Looking-Glass who tells Alice, “It takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place.” 

Lest we forget CA.

In 2012, the federal officials estimated that 13.7 billion barrels of oil could be recovered from the Monterey Shale. The EIA now says that only 600 million barrels of oil can be recovered using existing technologies such as acid treatment and fracking, the controversial oil and gas technique that involves forcing millions of gallons of water laced with silica and chemicals deep underground to break up rock formations.

Reality check anyone?

“This downgrade fundamentally changes the risk-reward calculation when it comes to unconventional oil development in our state,” Jayni Foley Hein, executive director of the Berkeley Center for Law, Energy and the Environment, said in a statement from the group CAFrackFacts. “Given that the industry’s promised economic benefits are not likely to materialize, the state should take a hard look at the impacts that oil development has on public health, safety and the environment.”

The revised figures come from new evidence accumulated by the EIA and the U.S. Geological Survey, Sieminski said. Occidental Petroleum Corp. (OXY), based in Los Angeles, controls 2.3 million acres in California -- an area 12 times the size of New York City -- including vast portions of the Monterey Shale that have so far frustrated attempts to extract commercial quantities of crude.

Makes one think, doesn't it, particularly when weighing the costs versus the benefits of tech questionable at best.

To open shale rocks and to release trapped oil and gas, large amounts of water, fine sand, and chemical substances must be injected under high pressure into the ground. In fact, hydraulic fracturing requires as much as five million gallons of water per well; in 2012 alone, fracking consumed some 50 billion gallons of water. Although the sheer volume of water consumed may not present a problem in water-rich regions, such as Pennsylvania, it may become a major obstacle in water-parched states, such as Texas; overall, 55 percent of the wells fracked since 2011 are in drought areas. In those areas, energy producers will need to compete for water with other users, including farms, manufacturing plants, and households. According to a recent UN World Water Development Report on water and energy, "There is an increasing potential for serious conflict between power generation, other water users and environmental considerations."

Water wars anyone?
And so it goes - K. Vonnegut

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Who Makes What

What's interesting here is the fact our for profit medical system pays big bucks to non-doctors in the HC system we all love and cherish, something to consider when you go to your doctor to get a check up or to get a live saving and exquisitely delicate operation requiring a skilled set of hands to the max to do the deed.  

It gets better

Single payer anyone? Works for me.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Event Horizon

When looking at this photograph of a cornfield in Nebraska, one is struck by the sheer size of the landscape in question, where the sky seems to extend to forever and simple breaks in the horizon attain a significance in ways impossible to imagine outside of a place such as this. Now imagine this place poisoned, where nothing grows and restoration to it's former state is simply not possible due to the kind of product Keytone XL will ship to Texas refineries if the pipeline comes to pass.

Trans­Canada, the $48 billion Canadian company that owns the Keystone, has repeatedly said the XL will be “the safest pipeline ever built on U.S. soil,” a technological marvel with automatic shut-off valves and satellite monitoring. The exact composition of what will flow through the pipeline is not publicly available, but it will include bitumen — a thick, semisolid petroleum product — blended with natural gas that has been pressurized to become a liquid. If the line is approved, it could carry 830,000 barrels a day of this “diluted bitumen” across Nebraska, over 275 miles and through 515 private properties. No one knows exactly what a leak would do, but evidence from past malfunctions suggests catastrophe. In 2010, a spill from Enbridge’s Line 6B dropped 840,000 gallons of bitumen to the bottom of the Kalamazoo River in Michigan. Four years and more than a billion dollars later, the cleanup continues. Last spring, Exxon’s Pegasus line burst near a residential area of Mayflower, Ark., spreading 210,000 gallons of bitumen through neighborhood streets, causing evacuations and leaving residents complaining of respiratory problems, nausea and headaches.

Something to consider, don't you think?


The net should be a public utility, forever neutral, where all bits are created equal and not sliced up into preferred bits vs unpreferred bits based on monies paid to a given ISP by a content provider in order to juice up bit speed in delivering content to people able to pay the extra fees in order to get said content at faster rates at the expense of smaller entities like BRT, a situation that, in time, would wreak havoc on a chaotic and bit neutral system that works due to the universally agreed upon and applied open standards protocols defining how the net functions as a communications construct for the world.   If a two tiered system becomes the norm, the underlying tech would eventually be compromised as the big players would develop, in effect, proprietary methodologies to improve their net speeds while the rest of the web would devolve into an afterthought because of the eventual elimination of the universal application of OS technology that keeps all bits equal on today's internet, the most complex communication system every designed by man.

With this in mind, the net should become a public utility, forever allowed to run without the Wheelers of the world trying to game the system with Orwellian weasel words akin to how politicians defend the indefensable with turgid and abstract prose designed to confuse and disguise the real intentions of the enterprise that is committing the indefensible, something Orwell knew all to well when writing Politics and the English Language.

Interesting enough, Netflix, the larges content provider on the net, wants Net Neutrality big time as they realize what would happen if the Verizon's of the world got their way. 

Addendum: Click here to read Wheelering and Dealing at the FCC. You won't be disappointed.

Click the FCC logo to send your comments about Net Neutrality directly to the FCC, 
it's the right thing to do.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

NYC + 10'

Click the Surging Seas  pix to go interactive to see the kind of impact 
10' feet of sea level rise will have on NYC.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Tracking 2 Step

This Dilbert's funny yet indirectly foreboding when looked at from the perspective of just how much our civil rights are being systematically violated by the powers at be in this once great nation, a situation that's becoming ever more dangerous from this writer's perspective.


Awesome model of the universe. Recommendation, turn down the volume, 
it distracts from the beauty and power of the tech. The site is also amazing.

The Illustris project is a set of large-scale cosmological simulations, including the most ambitious simulation of galaxy formation yet performed. The calculation tracks the expansion of the universe, the gravitational pull of matter onto itself, the motion or "hydrodynamics" of cosmic gas, as well as the formation of stars and black holes. These physical components and processes are all modeled starting from initial conditions resembling the very young universe 300,000 years after the Big Bang and until the present day, spanning over 13.8 billion years of cosmic evolution. The simulated volume contains tens of thousands of galaxies captured in high-detail, covering a wide range of masses, rates of star formation, shapes, sizes, and with properties that agree well with the galaxy population observed in the real universe. We are currently working to make detailed comparisons of our simulation box to these observed galaxy populations, and some exciting promising results have already been published.

Tuesday, May 06, 2014

Justices who don't get it

I'm really glad that 5 Supremes decided, amongst themselves, to trash the Constitution regarding the separation of church and state as written in the 1st Amendment, something the Founding Fathers were adamant about as they knew just how catastrophic injecting religion into politics could become whether the religion in question be christian, islamic, jewish, hindu or whatever as the specific religion in question doesn't matter save for the fact said religion will eventually impact the government in ways that negatively impact anyone who's not a believer in that chosen religion or anyone who doesn't believe in a god at all, a philosphy Jefferson, Adams, Franklin, Paine and Madison, among significant others, related to without issue. 

Words cannot describe just how partisan and inept this court truly is. Jefferson, Hamilton, Washington, et al, are rolling in their graves in seeing how these small minded "politicians" made a ruling (The Town of Greece, NY vs. Galloway) even more atrocious then Citizens United & McCutcheon as this "masterpiece" violates the core essence of the Constitution of America, the Bill of Rights. 

Any questions?

Thursday, May 01, 2014

A Judge who gets it

What the Supremes did regarding Citizens United and McCutcheon, is now coming back to haunt us big time. Unbridled money corrupts, something Judge Paul A. Crotty, SDNY Federal District Court Justice, knows all too well in having to reluctantly abide by these atrocious rulings by a court less then Supreme in every sense of the word.

On Thursday, Judge Paul Crotty, who sits on the federal district court in Manhattan, reluctantly allowed unlimited contributions to independent political groups in New York State. “Reluctantly,” in fact, doesn’t begin to describe how clenched the judge’s teeth were in writing this remarkable opinion, which eloquently describes the dangers of the very act he was allowing...

“Indeed, today’s reality is that the voices of ‘we the people’ are too often drowned out by the few who have great resources,” the judge wrote. “In today’s never-ending cycle of campaigning and lobbying, lobbying and campaigning, elected officials know where their money is coming from and that it must keep coming if they are to stay in office. Ordinary citizens recognize this; they know what is going on; they know they are not being included. It breeds cynicism and distrust.”

Click here to read his heartfelt opinion. Who knows, maybe Roberts and the gang of 5 might learn something from somebody who really does understand the letter of the law but then again, knowing how this version of the SC operates, I wouldn't make book on it in any way shape or fashion.