August 19th, 2020

#7261: You're serious, aren't you.

I stopped reading Jalopnik because they're part of Gawker, but recently I've started reading again, and came across this one today: Go down to "5th gear: Nobody 'earns' $80 billion."
Elon Musk is now the fourth-richest person in the world. You hate to see it.

[blockquote redacted]

He better put all of it on free internet and cheap spaceflight, is all I'm saying. Should probably try to feed or house a few million people too, if he finds time to care.
What? No complaints about Mark Zuckerberg, who is the third richest person in the world?

On the contrary, I do not hate to see it; I love it. I think Elon Musk ought to be worth ten times that much just because of what he's doing for the commercialization of space. How many people does he employ at Tesla and SpaceX? How many jobs did his internet banking venture (which eventually became PayPal) create?

Elon Musk may be crazy, but all of that is offset by the fact that he uses his money to do useful things. While other members of the billionaires' club concentrate on getting richer, or on their various left-wing foundations, Musk is building the future.

Good! I hope he gets so stinking filthy rich that those Gawker assholes seethe with rage every time his name is mentioned.

* * *

What the hell is going on in Florida? Someone found a live air-to-air missile in its shipping container.

How do you just lose something like that?

* * *

Barack Obama is so out of touch, he thinks that people still get Social Security checks through the mail.

* * *

"Protestors", they say, but the picture they selected has a person holding a sign that says "DEATH TO AMERIKKKA". It's captioned, "Demonstrators marching on a roadway during a protest against police brutality and the death of George Floyd, on May 31, 2020, in Miami, Florida."

Yeah, "Death to Amerikkka" is the natural sentiment expressed by someone who thinks that the police engage in racist violence on a routine basis.

Earth to Arse Technica: your bias is showing. Then again, when does it not?

* * *

Similar "protestors" are now hunting down transgenders and beating the stuffing out of them, because Black Lives Matter. The press is not reporting this violence against transgendered people because it doesn't want to make Burn Loot Murder look bad; and the transgender community is taking the lumps and remaining silent about it because, as Ace explains, "Their shrieks about violence are simply political primal scream therapy and not to be taken as anything more than noise."

Meanwhile, I'm sitting here wondering if I should pop a bowl of popcorn. The left is losing its mind!

* * *

Well, certainly won't be buying any Goodyear products anytime soon. Goodyear allows its employees to wear Burn Loot Murder apparel, but not Make America Great Again apparel. They're saying there that they "ask" that their employees refrain from political advocacy in the workplace that "falls outside of racial justice and equity issues".

How very convenient: they set the rule to allow the speech they like, to forbid speech they don't like, and then wrap themselves in the mantle of tolerance.
As we detailed earlier, a slide that purports to be from Goodyear's diversity training has leaked and appears to show that the company considers "Blue Lives Matter," "All Lives Matter," and "MAGA" attire "unacceptable," while at the same time encouraging "Black Lives Matter" and "Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Pride (LGBT)" attire.

The differences are shown under a slide that appears to be outlining a zero tolerance policy. Aptly named, if we say so ourselves.

As The Gateway Pundit put it, the slide appears to be "zero tolerance" against support for police or conservative values. Which, of course, flies in the face of actually engaging in the values of tolerance and equality.
The simple fact is that BLM and LGBT attire is supporting a political stance, which they say their policy is meant to exclude. The slide itself says, under "Zero Tolerance", that "Political Affiliated Slogans or Material" are "unacceptable". But, "Black Lives Matter" is the name of an avowed marxist political organization, and therefore should be considered "unacceptable". Right?

...except that the people making these decisions are left-wing asshats so of course the apparel that supports the marxism and the leftism and the socialism are perfectly fine.

So: fuck Goodyear with a rusty chainsaw, until and unless they get their mind right.

* * *

Chicago really is being sacked. When you have looters driving up with rental trailers and packing them full of merchandise--

We used to shoot looters. Now we let them pack U-hauls. This is called "racial justice".

* * *

The indians had an agricultural civilization here, once. It fell long before the white man really took an interest in the New World, though. Probably disease, some kind of plague, wiped out so many people that their population could no longer be supported by agriculture: just too few hands to do the necessary work.

That's my theory.

* * *

Three days into "Endless Eight" already--

August 17 was supposed to be a hot day, a good one to go to the pool--it wasn't. But August 18 was a "ridiculously nice day," as was today. Tuesday was bug catching; I'm not sure what today was supposed to be.

Then again, I'm not a carefree high school student.

* * *

Came within a couple of inches of taking the bike to work today, but didn't. Oh well!

#7262: Well, that didn't work, not really.

So, had occasion to replace the screen in a laptop the other day.

At work I have an old, old computer which I use for making DVDs and a few other things. I mean, by any reasonable standard this laptop would be a great replacement for Seiren--an older Core i5 processor, vintage 2015-ish (newer than the one in Floristica!), 16 GB of RAM (salvaged), a 250 GB SSD (also salvaged). I mean, for a computer I cobbled together out of parts I salvaged from computers that were being ewasted, it's a pretty fair dinkum machine.

It worked fine until I closed the lid on the cap for a USB thumb drive and broke the screen. I was having a day, and slapped the lid shut as I was leaving my office to go take care of something that somebody thought was a huge emergency, and then realized Shit.....

Anyway I did a little looking around and found that I did not have so much as one computer like this one anywhere, so I couldn't just take the LCD panel out of another junker and put it into this one. I just resigned myself to having to use an external monitor when using that computer, is all.

This and that happened, a couple of weeks passed; I replaced the screen in a user's laptop (she'd closed hers on a pen) and that task got me to thinking about it again. I did some poking around on-line and found out that some parts vendors said that the screen used in the Latitude E7450 would work in the E6450 as well, and it just so happened that I had taken the keyboard assembly from one of my "end of life" E7450s (next stop: recycle bin) to replace a user's keyboard after she slopped some syrupy goo all over the space bar. Since it could not be reused, I sat down with it and took its screen off, tossed the rest into the "ewaste" (recycle) bin, and carried on.

Shortly I had the screen assembly apart. Steeled myself, and then began to disassemble the DVD-making computer, and shortly I had its screen assembly off and disassembled. Pulled the bad LCD, put the good one in (after making sure the connectors matched) and then reassembled the thing. Put it all the way back together, took a deep breath, crossed my fingers, and turned it on.

Big, bright, beautiful Dell logo, no cracks or fissures or leaking liquid crystal--just a perfect boot screen. And I let it go, and marveled at how nice the screen looked. Very nice! But I was pressed for time, so I shut it down and put it away, content that I had fixed it.

Couple days passed, I had some time, so I hauled it down. And when I looked at the screen settings I got a nice surprise. You see, the native resolution for the broken panel was 1388x900, something like that...but the "recommended resolution" for the display now was 1920x1080. No wonder that screen looked so good!

Here's the thing: a laptop is basically like a desktop computer, only more intricate and less standardized. The laptop's display is basically just a monitor. The cable that goes from the laptop's motherboard to the display is nothing more than a basic signal cable, like an HDMI or VGA cable, with a few added lines for power and such. So as long as the connector is the same, as long as the pins in that connecter are mapped the same, you can plug in any damned display panel you want.

...so when the computer started up, after I swapped in the newer LCD, there was a little back-and-forth between the motherboard and the display panel, and they worked out that 1920x1080 was the correct resolution, and the OS quietly configured itself to display that.

But there's more to this story.

You see, the computer I took apart had a webcam in the lid. Turns out that the webcam is this tiny little thing about 1/4" wide, maybe 3" long, and 1/8" thick. And it connects with USB.

Oh, it's not a standard USB cable; it's a 10-position connector of some kind and the wires are incorporated into the display cable, and connect to the motherboard there. But in theory, if you had that cable, you should be able to connect this camera to any computer's USB port.

So I tried it. Had to use the DMM to suss out which wires go where, and had to find a way to strip these tiny, tiny wires (maybe 30 gauge?) but after sacrificing a USB cable and wiring the thing up, I plugged it into the computer...and it saw the thing! It played the noise it plays when a USB device is plugged in.

...couldn't enumerate it, couldn't find a driver, but it sort-of worked even so. The computer recognized that a USB device was connected, anyway.

Now: the thing says it wants 3.3 volts and I connected it directly to the 5V line in the USB cable. That might have zorched the camera module. Or maybe 5v is just overdriving it so it can't communicate, I don't know. Who cares?

At some point I'll jigger up a way to get the voltage down to 3.3 volts and try again. And perhaps I'll come across another camera module; who knows?

It's just fun to fiddle, is all.