Saturday, December 26, 2020

Holiday Recovery Odds and Ends

We had subdued holiday around the house, did a video phone call with Precious Grand Daughter, Son and Dear Daughter In Law in the evening, and generally didn't do much else, besides arm wrestle Windoze 10.  It just refuses to let me control my own computer.  I cooked some spare ribs in the Masterbuilt Electric Smoker because it's insulated while the Weber Kettle isn't.  I've seen videos of people cooking in the MES with outdoor temperatures around 30, so our 48 to 54 was easy for it.  

Oh, yeah, we had a lot of spare ribs.  This is after three people ate as much as they cared.  Probably about 2/3 left.

While there has been some activity visible at SpaceX Boca Chica around Eileen, the last three days have seemed slow, with no work yesterday as you'd expect.  It's hard for me to imagine they can keep fully staffed and going full speed this time of year.  It seems to be a nationwide thing that the high-tech sector facilities tend to shut down between Christmas and New Year because so many people working there come from other cities and travel home for the holidays.  I never looked into it from any statistical sense, just my experience both at companies I worked for and companies I had to talk business with.

Despite that general lull in activity, Elon Musk surprised a lot of people on Christmas Eve when he tweeted the first hop of the Super Heavy booster would be in "a few months".  It's no secret they've been working on Serial Number 1 Super Heavy in the shipyard at Boca Chica (which sometimes seems to be called BN1, perhaps Booster Number 1?).  Within a month or two would be "soon" for something that epic.

Speaking of soon there are road closures at Boca Chica Monday through Wednesday, with commenters expecting from hypergolic testing to Wet Dress Rehearsal and even to a Static Fire test before Friday. We'll have to see.

Prototype SN9, also called Eileen, at sunrise on Christmas morning. Photo credit Boca Chica Mary.

Teslarati posted a link to a processed video of number 8's test flight, in 4k video.  I'd embed it here, but go watch it in full screen mode.  


  1. I despise Windows 10. When I set up my latest office machine I went with Linux (Fedora). I kept my old Win 7 system for the occasional program that requires Windows.

  2. ALL the Aerospace companies in Southern California shut down for Christmas/New Years. It was a very nice benefit when I started with Hughes. It kinda-sorta happened at DirecTV, but since I was in Operations, it didn't apply to me.

    Even after the Russkies took over Sea Launch they still gave us the week off.

  3. Does that make your leftovers spare spare ribs?

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  5. Run a Windows 7 Powershell, and a program debloater. Control panel will be back and you'll have more control.
    LibreOffice seems to be a very good replacement.

  6. Without a doubt, Windows 10 is the worst OS they're ever put out, and I've been running Microsoft crap since MSDOS 2.

    It's like the only thing the OS is there for is to make your life miserable and sell you more stuff. I told my wife Windows is like an abusive spouse: it makes your life miserable all day and when you start up the computer it shows you a pretty picture as if to say, "look at how nice I am to you."

    My problem the last couple of days has been networking. Which is a continuation: all of my biggest problems with Win10 for the last year that I've owned it have been networking. This time it was a problem with a backup drive I have that's on my home network (NAS). While I could see my backup drive on the network, and go to it from Firefox as if it were a just an IP address on web somewhere, Windoze wouldn't let me map a drive letter to it so I can do my backups.

    It eventually worked by going to the old Windows 7 backup and restore program that ships with 10, but I'm still concerned it won't work next time.

    Which does nothing for the Win 10 problems I have on the computer in the shack, where it drops the connection to the internet over my home network for no apparent reason. And the handful of other problems I have with windows networking around house.

    Jon125 - been running LibreOffice for years. It's a very competent replacement for Office.

  7. Tried this earlier but had problems.

    The story I was told about 33 years ago about the long shut down at Christmas/New Years was that it started in the iron and steel industry. Back in the day, maybe 100 years or more ago, the iron smelters had to shut down their blast furnaces for Christmas. They would come back from the Christmas holiday start them up and as soon as they were running well shut them down for New Year's Day. It wasn't very productive to do this therefore they would just shutdown from Christmas through New Year's Day. The same effect was seen in other industries that the period between Christmas and New Year's Day was not very productive so they adopted the same break. But as a consequence a lot of other holidays were not given to still achieve the amount of time not in production. The practice just stuck.

    My wife has MS Windows 10 using it to be able to use programs that only run well on MS Windows. Her minimal use doesn't cause too many problems but occasionally I do get called in to solve something. The computer I am writing this on is MS Windows 7 Professional and it can dual boot to Linux. MS Win 7 is not too bad. My hamshack computer uses Linux, Ubuntu to be specific, as its main OS. I am enough of a power user to make it functional and get around some that distributions quirks. I even use it to host my personal blog since we have fiber to the premises. I have found that WINE works well enough to run many MS Windows programs I want to use such as 4NEC2, some code trainers and PCsat32. I have used Virtualbox on it to run MS Win 7 but since my computer is nearing 10 years old it is struggling with Virtualbox now though it wasn't back when I built it. The Virtualbox/Win 7 was so I could work remotely at times. Maybe I can convince my wife to let me build a new updated computer for my personal use and I can make the current one a server only system.

    1. That's a very believable story about the steel mills. I worked in electronics manufacturing in south Florida from about '75 to '82 and a week off at Christmas wasn't a thing down there. Moving here to the center of the state, all of the electronics companies shut down. The explanation I got was that so many people took off to travel that it was just too hard to get things done. Even the vendors we worked with either took off or said it was ultra quiet in the office.

      Anyway - years ago, my desktop was dual boot to Ubuntu or Win 7. Back when I first retired (five years ago!) I spent a week trying to make the shack computer Linux only. There are lots of free or low cost apps, but within a month I was back to running Win7 for my preferred set (Ham Radio Deluxe). I couldn't find one that would do what I like. HRD has an app that controls the antenna rotator. Click on the spot on the graphic map, or enter a prefix and click there, and it points the antenna at that country.

      Today, the shack is much more integrated with the computer and while I can operate the radio without the computer on (unlike at least one major brand), I can only do a small percentage of what I do on the air without a computer.

      OTOH, I'm sure the Linux environment must be better now.

      The thing about Windows is that everyone writes their apps for Windows because everyone runs Windows because everyone writes their apps for Windows... It's a positive feedback loop.

      Getting Windows 10 in the shack to recognize and play nice with my radios took far, far too long and left me feeling like I'd had a colonoscopy without anesthesia. But the manufacturers write for Windows because ... see above.