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WEEK 4 2005

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Saturday 29 January 2005

Saturday - not a lot to say. My head cold is still going strong - sinuses hurt.

Some more information on the USS San Francisco incident over at A.E. Brain, scroll down to Friday the 28th. It sounds as though they had torpedo's in the tubes and were fortunate that the tubes were not crushed to the point where the propellants leaked and ignited.

Friday 28 January 2005

Friday - raining again this morning.

For no particular reason: Your #1 source on the web for beer and soda related lights.  [via Iowahawk]

Another interesting post on economics over at Marginal Revolutions, on the possible housing bubble, but talking more generally in the linked blogs about what is really going on in the world economic system.  My economics prof in college was of the Austrian school but I recall almost nothing of the subject, and he certainly said almost nothing about policy at this level. If you follow the link to Setzer's page and go down into the comments you see this exchange:

"Why would an Austrian malinvestment boom show up only in the market for housing and not as a boom in plant & equipment investment?"

The perfect question. There is no reason to believe monetary policy has been faulty. The Fed lowered interest rates in dramatic fashion from January 2001 in an attempt to lesson the effects of a slowing economy. The result was dramatic real estate investment and a vibrant consumer durables market that bouyed the economic from then till now. The problem has still however been to little corporate investment and this can be blamed on fiscal policy that while giving us a fierce structural deficit was largely focused on tax cuts that have had a relatively minor effect in stimulating demand.

Posted by: anne

There has been a lot of plant & equipment and other investment in China, which is part of the Dollar zone. That's where that side of the stimulus has gone, in my view. Similar to how previously certain US states might have lost out compared to others during an investment boom.

Posted by: Daniel

And lot's more stuff along those lines. Interesting stuff.

An image of the USS San Francisco in drydock. Incredible damage. More shots here.

uss san francisco in drydock
The USS San Francisco in dry dock. Click for larger image.

I've talked before about the mildly distressing use of old Rock 'N Roll songs for commercials. I suppose now that every song has been digitized and every song right databased  it's easy for commercial writing companies to get permission. But it just seems wrong sometimes. As J. Geils put it: "My blood runs cold, my memory has just been sold".

It all seems a lot more prevalent in the last six months or so. This morning there was an old Cars song, "Hello Again", being used for something.  I also heard Meatloaf's "I would do anything for love" being used for an ad recently, but it wasn't so bothersome  because it was well, Meatloaf (and Dr. Pepper).

Friday Cat blogging pic:

sleepy and annoyed cat
Cats aren't always thrilled at being woken for a friday cat blogging photo.


Thursday 27 January  2005

Thursday - I used to live here, many years ago. It looks deserted now, and the old barns behind the house are gone, but the cows still surround it.
Old house, Arcata, Ca
The corner of Polaris and Old Bay School Road, Arcata, California

Wednesday 26 January 2005

Wednesday - my brother and I also had an exchange of emails a while ago about the possible steel boat purchase, and the website pictures of control stations of the submarine USS Philadelphia that I mentioned a few weeks ago. He served on the USS George Washington himself, some years ago-
    Whew! Glad to hear I can now resume my life without the fear of having
to scrape and paint a metal boat hull. I did enough of that in the Navy and
do not miss it a bit.

The Pasadena pictures bring back a lot of memories. For all of the
technical advances there have been in the last twenty years or so, subs
still function pretty much the same and even look much the same. What
strikes me first and most about the Pasadena pictures in how small she
really is--at 381 feet the G.W. was longer by 81 feet. The control room
pictures are especially interesting--in the G.W. control room the BCP panel
and controls with the chief petty officer station were to the port as well
but back behind the diving station by about five feet and there was much
more room between the diving officers station and the con to the rear.
Judging from the pics there was more room all around. The chairs for the
helmsmen and plansmen are laughable in size--and I've noticed the same type
of chair on other boats as well. On the G.W. our chairs were like thrones
comparably and completely non-regulation. Deep leather cushions with wide
armrests and high padded backs. Ahhhhh, that was the life! I know there is a
story there about how that came to pass but for the life of me I cannot
remember how it goes.

Tell your friend that the yellow 'flashlights' are battle lanterns and
that all ships carry them.
Of course, I still have a question for him: Why is there a life buoy inside a submarine?

In a somewhat grimmer vein, a shot of the damaged USS San Francisco at dockside, with some more of the bow shown. [via Bubblehead]

Tuesday 25 January 2005

Tuesday - my brother emails me that another Arthur C. Clarke book is being made into a movie:

It's interesting. I think it could also be done as a modern animation, like Titan A.E., only (hopefully) better. In fact it would be neat if someone undertook to do the whole Clarke 'canon' in a similar vein. Sort of like a matched set of books.

The RAMA series has three books in it, if I recall correctly, Rendezvous with Rama being the first and best, though I never finished reading the last book. I think Clarke had a co-author of some sort and I just didn't care for the writing.

But it would be neat to do a true to the original anime of The SentinelA Fall of Moondust, or any of the other early books and stories. Heh. Tales from the White Hart has some good stories in it.

Monday 24 January 2005

Monday - working away on things. Had coffee at Starbuck's with a friend. She spent the afternoon coaching a son in soccer and it became clear that she was starting to stiffen up by the time we finished our first cup. Normally we'll have a couple of cups, but she left me for a few ibuprofen and hot bath...

Back in early December I posted about the possible issues of a Chinese mainland company buying up IBM's notebook business. Apparently my blog is wider read than I thought - it is indeed an issue and an article at Slashdot suggests the US government may not approve it. It does point out that the laptops are already made in China...

view from reno hilton at night
A similiar view from the Reno Hilton, at night.

Sunday 23 January 2005

Sunday - feeling a bit under the weather.

Well, the Pittsburgh Steeler's lost, and the New England Patriot's are going on the the Superbowl, where they will be crushed by the Eagle's.

Picture of the Week
Shadow of the Reno Hilton

Photo Notes: The view from my 24th floor room at the Reno Hilton. Note the hotel's shadow. It (the hotel) is acting as the gnomon for an enormous sundial. It would have been interesting to get more shots and animate them, but I didn't think of it at the time.

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