atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,
atomic_fungus
atomic_fungus

#7008: THIS is why they hate Trump so much.

One reason, anyway: his support among blacks is at 42%. That's a pretty high number for a Republican President post-1965.

First Democrat primary elections are next week and the remaining field of candidates is lily-white. Race of candidates won't be a factor in who blacks vote for. Biden--hoping to woo some of the black vote--said he wants Michelle Obama to be his running mate.

Why, yes, I am rather enjoying this.

* * *

Speaking of desperation moves, the entire first episode of Picard is available for viewing on YouTube. Sorry, but I'm so uninterested I'm not going to watch it, even for free.

They lost me when I heard that Romulans had acid blood which is somehow harmful to other Romulans. "Hey, you know that fluid which suffuses my entire body from head to toe? It'll kill you! It's acid! But I'm perfectly safe from it, because [tech] [tech] [tech]!"

For those of you who don't know: scriptwriters for Star Trek: The Next Generation, Deep Space Nine, and Voyager didn't have to know anything about technology. They'd insert "[tech][tech][tech]" when they needed technical jargon, and a special team would come up with the words to fill the slot. "Well, captain, if we [tech][tech][tech] with the [tech][tech][tech] then I think we can deflect that asteroid! The problem is, [tech][tech][tech]!" becomes "Well, captain, if we modulate the deflector shields with the output of a phaser beam amplifier, I think we can deflect that asteroid! The problem is, we're likely to burn out the deflector dish EPS conduits!"

At that point the technology is a deus ex machina and you might as well say, "Well, captain...LET'S JUST USE FUCKING MAGIC AND GET IT OVER WITH!"

There are limits to willing suspension of disbelief, after all. Hey, I think I'll poison someone by dumping a pound of liquid metal onto his sandwich! What the fuck.
Dearly Beloved demanded that I stopped the show, delete all that was recorded and removed it from the DVR schedule. I said nothing but complied. When even my wife, one who goes to extremes to suspend disbelief so she can watch TV shows (and the Hallmark Channel Christmas movies) loses her mind, you have fucked up as a TV writer.
Elemental mercury isn't even all that good at being poisonous. It doesn't metabolize very well, for one thing. If you drank it, most of it would pass right through you. (Only "most", which is why it would still kill you.) But believe me, eating a sandwich that had been poisoned with elemental mercury would lead to some extremely unpleasant sensations.

Incidentally, I was right: CBS renewed the series before the first ep of Picard had even run. None of the viewing public had seen it and they renewed it.

...hence their big desperation move now.

* * *

A bunch of communist radicals are planning some kind of riot in the NYC subways.

I expect the working stiffs who need to ride those trains to dish out epic beatdowns to these asshats.

* * *

It still looks to me as if this is a parking permit, not a stargazing permit. But I am willing to admit that I could be wrong about it.

* * *

This only seems crazy if you're not aware that time is a continuum, not a one-way ratchet. Photons don't experience time. By definition they're moving at the speed of light, and the Lorentz-Fitzgerald contraction equation shows that there is no time for an object moving at the speed of light. The photon exists simultaneously along its entire path from source to sink, and so it's no problem at all for a photon to retroactively (to us) change its behavior.

Rather than rewriting the past, it merely changes the photon's behavior wherever it happens to be in four-dimensional space-time. It only looks like the collapse of the wave function is going back in time to us because we experience time sequentially.

It's a hard leap to make, but once you understand it, behavior like this makes perfect sense.

* * *

Germany has 60 GW of windmill capacity and 46 GW of solar panels installed. I looked at those figures and said, "...and you have to divide the installed capacity figure by five to get the real energy production figure," and then lo and behold I overestimated it:
Unfortunately, most of the time the actual amount of electricity produced is only a fraction of the installed capacity. Worse, on "bad days" it can fall to nearly zero. In 2016 for example there were 52 nights with essentially no wind blowing in the country. No Sun, no wind. Even taking "better days" into account, the average electricity output of wind and solar energy installations in Germany amounts to only about 17% of the installed capacity.
Seventeen percent--I was being generous and assuming twenty percent!

But it gets so very much worse:
In theory the ideal backup for wind and solar energy would be to store excess electricity produced when the Sun is shining and strong winds are blowing, and inject it back into the grid when needed. Unfortunately, electricity is a difficult and expensive commodity to store.

By far the most efficient presently available solution for storing excess electric power is to use it to pump water against gravity into a reservoir. When electricity is needed again, it is produced by letting water flow down again via a turbine generator. In this process about 25% of the energy is lost.
That's the Laws of Thermodynamics in operation. So if you shove every last watt of electricity generated by your renewable sources into storage so you can run things at night, you end up with 75% of 17% of 106 GW of installed capacity.

13.515 GW.

30,000 windmills, 1.7 million photovoltaic panels, and a pumped storage facility--out of all that, you get 13.515 gigawatts' worth of power. They figure they need 61 GW of generating capacity to ensure a stable power grid (no brown- or blackouts) and they've already got the hardcore greenies complaining about the noise and bird fatalities from windmills. And they don't even have the pumped storage! They have no way to store electricity for night or calm periods, and even if they did, the infrastructure required to generate 122 GW worth of electricity from renewable sources would be prohibitively expensive.

Meanwhile, nuclear power plants make gobs of clean energy.

* * *

Unbelievably tired today, but: closed half of the outstanding "task" tickets in my queue, then came home and washed the dishes and tidied up our bedroom a bit.

The tickets were kind of a "gimme" because when I went through them I realized, "This can be closed because I don't need to do anything." Example: a small handful of tickets for "copy data from hard drive to Manager's computer", but when I went to the change request to see who the user was, and what computer it was, the details there said, "Copy data to manager's computer: NO"

A lot of the "task" tickets auto-generate. When an employee's job is terminated--regardless of cause--there are three tasks which are auto-generated by the system. Check to make sure the user's not on the "do not touch" list (which basically means you keep their computer 100% intact for the Legal department), recover their hardware, and copy the user data from the retrieved computer's hard drive and hand it over to the ex-employee's manager.

Well, there are several groups of employees who are not assigned computers but used shared machines. So that "copy data" task ends up being a freebie. Checking the "do not touch" list takes exactly thirty seconds even if you manually look for the name, and then if he's not on it, you just notate the ticket ("So-and-so does not appear on the do not touch list as of 12:34 PM on 1/2/34" is similar to what I write, only with the correct date and time) and then close it.

So today I locked myself in my office and went through my task list, carefully reading and checking each task, and found that there were fifteen tasks I could just summarily close. It had been sitting at 28 tasks; I pared it down to 13.

...at the cost, though, of not going to my offsites today. I've told everyone that I'm going next week, but in fact it's looking like I'll have to hit Blue Island tomorrow, because they've got a computer which has just died, and it's a control room PC. *sigh* Oh well!
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