Friday, January 29, 2016

Odds and Ends

From EE Times, a cute, entertaining video that uses a technique called (I think) projection mapping.

They have another one where the table turns into a lagoon so a miniature chef can create a bouillabaisse. These are short videos, under two minutes each, and the source article links to some other fun videos.

Puzzled over the array of candidates looking to work for you in the White House this year?  Do you like long, involved questionnaires?  Look no further than "I Side With".  Not only can you fill in a lot of pages, you can provide answers beyond a simple Yes/No.  You can even write in an answer, and their software seems to do a nice job of interpreting your meaning.  For the record, I was 89% in agreement with Marco Rubio, 88% in agreement with Ted Cruz, Ben Carson, and Donald Trump, and well over 80% with the entire Stupid Party field.  It said I was 17% in agreement with the Old Lady Who Belongs in a Federal Jail and 17% in agreement with the Cranky, Crazy Old Socialist.  I'm surprised it was that high.  I don't think they give points for us all being bipedal air breathers, which is the only way I'd think I have that much in common with them.

Finally, while cleaning out my email boxes (anal-retentive is hyphenated, dammit!) I came across this great piece from The Onion in 2011, "Remains Of Ancient Race Of Job Creators Found In Rust Belt".  It has the tone of an archaeological publication. As a sample:
According to researchers, these long- forgotten people once flourished between western New York state and Illinois, erecting highly distinctive steel and brick structures wherever they went, including many buildings thought to have held hundreds of paid workers at a time.

"It's truly fascinating—after spending a certain number of hours performing assigned tasks, the so-called 'employees' at such facilities would receive monetary compensation that allowed them to support themselves and their families," said archaeologist Alan H. Mueller, citing old ledgers and time-keeping devices unearthed at excavation sites in the region. "In fact, this practice seems to have been the norm for their culture, which consisted of advanced tool users capable of exploiting their skills to produce highly valued goods and services."

"It's a complex and intriguing set of rituals we're still trying to fully understand," Mueller added. "But it appears as if their entire society was centered around creating, out of thin air, actual jobs that paid an actual living wage."
Yeah, it's an old piece, but whole idea that people creating and working at regular jobs where they earn a living from as being so remote in history that archaeologists study those people is a funny concept.  The idea that work is an ancient culture fits well in the Obama economy.


  1. Old? The article is only 5 years old.

    OH....I forgot...we all run on "Internet Time" now which means this article is approx 2,300 Internet Years old, give or take a few hundred....:-)

    1. It's not just "Internet Time", it's Obama time; fundamental transformation time. There isn't a week that goes by that I don't see or hear about something I never thought would happen in my lifetime. It's happening at a breakneck pace. Worse, it will be insanely hard to take apart. For instance, they buried laws for the healthcare act in the TARP bailouts, a year before the ACA passed.

      We could spend the next either years taking apart the damages from the last eight years.

    2. Oh, I agree 100% about the current state of affairs.

      I never thought it would be possible for the USA to go so far down the tubes so fast, but then I never expected some commie poser would be given the keys to the kingdom, either!

      My poorly written "joke" was that a 5-year old article was considered "ancient".

  2. Of course there's always "Stroke of the pen, law of the land!" if the right person gets into the Oval Office. But then Congress would surely impeach and remove him if he dared do so, REGARDLESS of which party was in control. It's still the thought that counts.

  3. So Ben Carson gave exactly the wrong answer in the last debate, when he was asked if he would change the track the government was on with regard to renewable energy: he said that the government had signed contracts and investors had committed money into these renewable energy schemes, and he would honor these commitments.

    But that's the key. Just as the current administration has made it difficult for our foreign allies to trust us anymore, the next Republican President should make it very very scary for any individual, corporation or state to enter into any relationship with the government.

    Break every contract, or twist the interpretation so as to make it unworkable. Just like with the OPM hack, dox every regulator and every non-profit working with the EPA, etc. Mess with Title IX regulations so much that schools will all start to emulate Hillsdale and avoid federal funds. Screw with Medicade and highway funds so that states will find it is not worth their while to accept federal grants.

    Break the machine.

    1. You know, I really like that. Short of shrinking the government down to 1/4 of its current size, that may have the best chance of working. Throw out every other entry in the Code of Federal Regulations. Throw a monkey wrench into everything else.

    2. Even better, move tax day to Election Day, and maybe even discontinue tax withholding, so that a giant tax bill is due on Election Day.

      Publish the tax forms as a 4 color glossy magazine that has funny stories of government waste interspersed with the boxes you have to fill in with your income.

    3. Maybe much of this could be done by the executive branch, even if the uniparty in Congress does not want to go along.