Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Rock mechanics on Knol

I'm combining my very long boring stories on Knol, for future reference, since my blog has become ridiculously large and messy. The latest is Rock Mechanics.

I'm leaving my PS3 story unfinished until I get back from the next batch of days at the cottage. So, I'm shutting down.


Fully customized internet appliances

For years the PC has been defined as something which can run the full MS suite of software. Nothing could compete with this! The Linux Desktop was shattered on those rocks.

Now the PC is dead! We are entering the world of customized mini-appliances, such as the cell phone, and if you go one up on that, you get the 'Keyboard internet appliance'. We've had one for a year now (Asus Eeepc), and it is fantastic. The big news is that Asus is taking this further with 23 new customized models. Try that with a PC! People are still wedded to MS and XP, but once network access becomes universal, they will move to Google Docs (etc).

If the next Sex & City movie has Carrie dumping the apple, and, instead carrying a gold Asus on a chain, then its future is made!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Dodging bullets - Los Angeles earthquake

I like when they talk about bullets when a minor earthquake strikes. THIS WASN'T A BULLET, FOLKS! It was just a damp squib. When the bullet comes, it won't be dodged.

The great mud volcano continues

Eventually, the reservoir that held all this mud is going to collapse into a giant crater. Then the whole thing will be a lake. The people that pricked this balloon are still having a party, but the government is going to have to treat this is as the equivalent of a giant dam, and move people out. The trouble may be that the country has no room for a displaced population. And tomorrow, they could have a giant earthquake!

Dome collapses at Montserrat

Wow, this took a really long time to develop. This is what happens at the end of a long eruption, such as the disaster of Pompeii. When it hits, the whole area gets swept with hot, nasty volcanic gas flows. With Vesuvius it happened fairly quickly, about a month is normal. With Chaiten, it still hasn't happened yet, and that volcano is one heck of an energizer bunny!

Next knol


I have no idea how they weight these things! I just create them and throw them out! It's a shame there are no editors, since I really, really need one! Are people just expected to randomly find them? Do they add the stars? I love getting in on the beginning of Google's attempt to take over the world! As usual, I'll give up when it gets boring or bureaucratic, like Wikipedia.

More on the CNSC bungle

This article offers more clarity on the CNSC role in the isotope fiasco. It shows that the CNSC had instilled a 'high friction' upward communication culture. That means 'everybody' knew about the bad pumps, but that it was difficult to bang on the closed doors of upper management. In other words, they couldn't have just communicated it, they would have needed to raise an alarm, and send all the headless chickens flying. No bureaucrat ever wants to do that! It was probably justified to fire Keen, as head bureaucrat.

We always had the same problem in the old company. Everybody would know about a problem, or an issue, but you couldn't get it up, and there were a lot of 'potential' issues! Every once in a while something would blow up and break down the doors of upper management. Then they always got mad that nobody told them about it in advance! They were still struggling with this when I left, mainly by trying to create a weighted 'threat' list. They also had a system where anybody could jot down issues, but this became quite mucky with ridiculousness.

Monday, July 28, 2008

The fish hits the big time!

Ohhh! I just got a T. Cruise-ology ad to appear on my blog! (I can't say the real name, or I'll blow up into flames!). I mean, give them all your money, and maybe they'll throw some this way! This is soooo great! I wonder who I'll offend? Maybe 'Old Shortie Wife Slaver' will actually contact me? I could be in fan magazine, with him up to my chest! Talk about a Mission Impossible!

Mud splooshed all over AECL and CNSC

Another day, another damning report. Seems the CNSC knew about those non-connected pumps all along. Only it was the lower minions! This is hilarious!!

Another article says they urge the quick replacement of the claptrap, seismic death pit, NRU reactor. That, and my Tim Horton's card buys me a cup of coffee! Gee, should we resurrect the Marvelous Maple Reactor, and get it to work? Nah, they're doing that with the ACR1000!

These useless Canadian institutions need to take a page from NASA's book, and learn how to dig out of the 'Harold Asmis Power Law Death Spiral', soon to be published on Knolie-Knolie.

Rollin' on the Knol-in

I have two new Knols over in Knol-land! I'm just taking some of my famous old articles and publishing them. I hope it works!

ps. Megathrusties

Bladder Baby

Queens student housing in Kingston, Ontario

Ok, I'm back from my one day trip to Kingston for middle son who is second year at Queens. They have a tradition there, where first year is taken care of at residence, and from then on you are thrown to the wolves, and must make your own cave in the jungle of the local housing. If you think I'm kidding about the 'wild' references, you should see some of these places! My stomach is still turning!

The Kingston housing economics is very interesting. For a while, all Ontario universities had a 'double cohort', which meant that Grade 13 was eliminated, and both grade 12&13 went to university at once. This created a bonanza for rental housing at Kingston, with very far houses full up. Now that 'pig in a python' has been fully digested, and there is a total rental housing collapse, with only the near houses finding renters. Top that with a total collapse of the selling market, (Ontario recession) and it is interesting. The place we got was a resale, but they gave up and started renting. Very nice basement, with an all-inclusive price, and shorter than 12 month lease. Just last year, they forced people to take 12 month leases with utilities extra!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

A nuclear plant is 'complicated'

First delay.

M9 weld failure at Bruce

Here's where people don't know their power law! 10 weld failures on bundle is 'unexpected' and 'totally unforseen'. Sure there have been weld failures before, maybe at most a few, but never 10! (blah, blah). Of course, if you had plotted weld failure frequency, you would have seen the, oh so dangerous, exponential curve, similar to earthquakes. That means you get a whole bunch of nice rumbly little ones, and then KABLAM! a big one!

I've cussed forever about companies that follow power law. They don't know what a horrible horse they are riding!

AECL loses radiactive thing

It only got out because somebody got a big dose of radioactivity. Otherwise, this sort of thing happens all the time and it never gets out.

Another mediocre cottage weekend

For those of you tuning in from around the world, things are not happy in Ontario cottage country. I sunned myself by the fire of the sauna. We did have some half-hour bursts of sun between the rain!

Old Mr. Sun better put some wood on the fire for next week! It's the August long weekend and it's a big thing up here. We've got a regatta on the lake, which has all sorts of fun things for the kiddies, like canoe races, swimming, running, etc. I've got a ton of relatives coming up, and it better be nice! I recall summers a long time ago when it was horrible, and we strung up a big tarp on the deck. Oh God, no more liquid weekends!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Check my DNS

Yeah, the most fun you can have for a buck (Zimbabwe dollar). Go to this site and press 'Check my DNS'. It looks for that latest flaw, which really only affects ISP's. I just did Bell, but maybe there are others. If you find a juicy one, then expose to the world here. The silly buggers deserve it!

Japan early warning system a dismal failure

This is an interesting comment. Seems the last time the system failure, it was blamed on the earthquake being too shallow. This time, it's too deep! Anyway, they'll get a lot of practice with their excuses, since I predict an earthquake storm over the next year or two. Japan is right in line for the stress disturbance of the 2004 M9. Some thrust earthquakes won't be so deep, so we can expect more 'Fist of God' earthquakes. It also makes it more likely for their huge subduction quake, which would be another M8 or M9, even though the subduction zone looks highly curved there, so I would give it only an M8 (300 km as opposed to 3000 km).

Collapsing buildings in earthquake country are a tough sell

So, if you own a collapsing brick building, on a swamp, in one of the highest seismic zones in the country, then you will have a tough time selling it for a high price. Are the seismic codes at fault? Should we relax them to non-existence? What if the whole area will be made a park and memorial after the earthquake?

It's a very interesting moral question, of whether there should be financial victims before the earthquake, or dead victims after.

Google's Knol opens up


I've signed up for it! I put in my profile and everything. Then I started reading the articles, and I realized these were long magazine articles, written for professional credit. I hate that! It reminds me of the old company, where each boss only wrote things in newsletters, for their boss to read. Thus, everything becomes rather boring.

One thing that exited me with Wikipedia, before it was taken over by militant editors, was the fact you could break things down to single page articles, and build things up with links. That way you could write for Grade 10, and yet if somebody followed all the links, it would be almost university grade. Knol has no links, since everything is privately held, and it is all written directly for university. Unlike the wiki, this makes it very reputable, but not very innovative or modern.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

San Francisco madhouse continues

Poor old guy, he's handed over the password, and even told the idiots how to use it. Still, they can't get very far, and accuse him of all sorts of horrible things, such as planting a logic bomb that didn't go off. I'm sure if this insane genius had planted a bomb, it would go off!

Now, the good townsfolk are happy in the fact that if they do continue to bungle things, they can all blame it on the poor sucker, who never had anybody to hand the keys over to, even if he wanted to! It's like owning this this most expensive sports car that takes two years of race course work to learn how to drive, and handing the keys over to Jack Black!

We know have the exact situation as if this guy fell into a manhole, except now they can continue to whip him with an astronomical bail. It really makes the whole town look incompetent and corrupt. I'm sure that if these bunglers had all the keys in the world, they couldn't figure out what this mad scientist had conjured up.

Radioactive leak causes drastic change in France


Most important quote:

Meanwhile, winemakers around Bollene selling Cote du Rhone under the name ``Coteaux du Tricastin'' want to change the brand. Other residents are considering more drastic actions.

Good God! What's more drastic in France than fudging the name of a wine? Sacre Blue! Is there no honour. This is as bad as building another McDonalds or letting in black people!

Christina Blizzard - Columnist with brains

Today we welcome Christina, who says she will keep an eye on this blog. Yeah! She wrote a nice piece on nimbyism, and the very silly path that our current gov'ts are following. She might be able to help us on preventing the Bruce disaster, but I don't know if anyone can help us there.

Some topics for any bright columnist (all of which I have written on, if only I could remember!):

-why are they giving money away for a fictional new Bruce plant, when OPG only has to give money to the local mayor?

-OPG is going to magically increase the megawatt-area density for the new plant by a factor of 2, while building next to a massive, active quarry?

-why does Toronto totally ignore the reasonable earthquake threat to its peace and tranquility?

-are really going to build nuclear plants, and a nuclear waste repository, while adding squat to the regional geological knowledge?

Another big Japan earthquake

This just through from my mailing list.

This is an M6.8 under land. The only hope that it doesn't do anything will be that it is very deep. Boy, Japan has been having more earthquakes than Toronto has rain! Perhaps the rain is better...

Toronto the Soaked

We are close to busting the record for the rainiest summer ever. Blah! I've got rain coming into my basement on a regular basis. Good thing I have a path for it to pour through. I'm digging some new drainage in the back yard, because I think the water comes from total saturation of the soil in one area. I don't even want to go back to the cottage, until the weather improves.

Lightning never strikes twice

I think it's a good plan. Plop down a nuclear plant right after a major earthquake. The stress shadow should be good for a hundred years or so. China will have to do something, since most of the dams were destroyed, and they're good at building nuclear plants.

Computer guy gives them enough rope to hang themselves

Mr. Childs, who is stuck with a $5 million dollar bail, finally coughed up the pass phrase to the San Francisco routers. He then had to tell them how to use it. I am sure that they will get everything working again at an enormous cost, and after a fair bit of disruption.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Electro-shock therapy goes modern

I've just *got* to get a set of these deep brain electrodes! Can you imagine? One second I'm watching Harper, then *ZAP* I'm happy again! It could work in all sorts of situations...

They're putting waste in the worst geology in the world... ZAP! Who cares?

The transformers are all sinking and about to blow up.... ZAP! Pass me another beer!

My children are driving me nuts.... ZAP! Here are the car keys, go kill yourselves!

Bears eat geologists, want some more

Yummy! There must be something about geologists! Perhaps it's that special smell from not bathing in field camp! Could be that tender meat from all those beers. Or perhaps being pickled in bug spray adds that special flavouring.

Anyway, a group of geologists find themselves on the buffet table, with a huge lineup of 'beary' hungry customers. Can they talk their way out of this? Will they be able to put everyone asleep with tales of Gabbro hunting in the Himalayas? Stay tuned.

US nuclear waste processing enjoys a closed system

The seismic report for a Vermont nuclear processing plant is in, and only the Dr. Strangelove DOE gets to see it. With a regular nuclear plant, the USNRC puts them on its web site, and we all get to laugh at it. Why the difference?

Monday, July 21, 2008

Dr. Frankenstein and his Monster

I love this whole story!

I will summarize in a tale. Seems Frank was hired by the local town council.

"Sir, we know not what we do, but we want every trendy thing that goes with apples, with every bell and whistle, and we're not paying very much."

So Frank built a giant monster that ran the city. They kept wanting it to get bigger and do more, without much money. Frank may have told them this was not wise, but they didn't listen. Now, unfortunately Frank was a bit of a megalomaniac, just like every other monster-builder out there. Soon, Frank had the ultimate monster, that only he could control, not out out of malice, but the fact that everybody else was a simpleton compared to Frank.

The monster did everything quietly in the background, slopping the toilets and washing the dishes. The good burgermeisters didn't know what they had. Simpletons tried to subvert the monster to their own ends, but Frank knew the dangers. A bit of interference and the whole thing would come crashing down on their heads, Frank included. He didn't even take holidays, so terrified of the consequences, he was. He locked out all the barbarians with pitch-forks.

Then in came the monster-slayer. "Slay this monster!" she said. "It's big and we don't understand it!" Frank went a bit nuts. "Kill the monster? You idiots don't know what you are doing!".

And so they threw poor Frank into the dungeon, and locked him up with a ridiculous and corrupt $5 million dollar bail. "Give us the key to tame the monster!" they said. He replied that they didn't know what they are doing and would destroy the city. They accused him of all sorts of terrible crimes committed while protecting his monster. Meanwhile, the monster continues to run the city with no problems, and Frank rots in jail.

Applying for mystery Bruce funding

Although I have no idea why they are doing this, I am going to fill out my application, provided it isn't too much work, and doesn't cost me anything. Maybe I'll need character references, so feel free to write them in the comments! I'm sure they won't mind if it's anonymous!

I would encourage anybody else to apply, and maybe scout for pitfalls, such as demanding that you are with some political organization.

ps. I knew there was a catch!

  • specifies the responsibilities of each party;
  • identifies the nature of the work to be funded;
  • specifies conditions for payment; and
  • requires the recipient to be accountable for public funds received.
That's sad! I guess this is what happens after the sponsorship scandal. So I won't apply, but maybe the greenie-weenies will hire me?

Love Earth Power!

Fusion is so sexy because it's "The Power of the Sun". We'll label nuclear as "The Power of the Earth", and we'll all be happy-happy! Get away from that nasty bomb-thing! Make Yuk-yuk Mountain a shrine to 'return earth power back to Mother Earth'. I think it could work!

Idaho-ho nuclear plant and Yemen

Oh-ho- I don't know about Idaho! This article is funny. Makes the Alberta nuclear dream almost look serious! Maybe they could use the Yemen pirates to steal North Korean ships bound for Syria, for nuclear parts!

Earthquake festival

I love the concept! We should have earthquake festivals everywhere to appease the Earthquake Gods. You could have special treats, such as "Smashed House" funnel cakes, and "Pancaked Building" pancakes, with little gummy people sticking out between the layers!

Instead of Bounce Houses, we could have "Shake Houses". You'd have to bring in that Japanese earthquake simulator on a truck. That would be awesome! Booths could sell earthquake survival kits, consisting of a hotdog and bottle of water. You could have pre-earthquake t-shirts saying "I survived the fill in the blank earthquake!" It would, of course, be the height of irony if a earthquake-body was photographed wearing that shirt!

There might be some good in all this fun, but I wouldn't push it. Just admitting you could have an earthquake, would be a great step forward.

Topographic analysis over GPS

These researcher make a hindsight analysis that they would have known the big China earthquake was coming. The topography indicated high strain rates, and the GPS was showing low to moderate. Was the GPS corrupt or politically motivated? Who knows? Most likely these areas can turn their strain rate off and on, depending on what's going on in the region.

I don't like hindsight analysis. The people in one of those previous articles I talked about, laid their bets down and called the future. That's a lot of risk for an ivory-tower type! Maybe his tenure is on the line! Far better to never risk anything.

When I was with the old company, they were experts at hindsight analysis. There, as in academia, or politics, you could never admit you were wrong. In this manner, the analysis was alway perfect, showing exactly what happened. It didn't matter that the physics was crap, only that the results looked good. If they did a forward analysis, it was always to rip out something perfectly good, and replace it. No risk there, since nobody could ever prove you wrong!

Japan gets hammered by earthquakes

I don't recall Japan getting this many earthquakes, in the past couple of years, ever since I got into the business. If they are all N-S thrusts, then it is most likely the M9 Sumatra earthquake that brought this on. I don't know if the 'nightmare' earthquake (copy of the 1923 Tokyo earthquake) fits this mechanism.

Still, Japan will be interesting to watch for the next few years.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Ghost nuclear plant offers money

I am sooo confused! I thought the horrible notion of a Bruce C was dead and gone. "Sir, this plant is dead, gone to its maker, ceased to exist, a concept no more!"

But no, they are offering money to assess it's dead body. Obviously, it will have no effect on the environment because it doesn't exist! I'll take that money!

But maybe I'm wrong, as always.

No earthquake for Olympics

China press reports that there will no earthquake for Olympics, since they didn't detect any signs. In the same article they say they didn't detect any signs for the last one.

Of course, that nasty 2004 M9 has put right in the cross-hairs of several major earthquakes.

AECL report will focus on fuzzy 'communication issues'

"What we have here is a failure to communicate."

Holy Moose Droppings, Batman! I suppose every whimpy report ever written goes down this road. Nobody gets blamed, and it's really easy to say "We fixed the problem by putting in a whole new bureaucracy dedicated to communication! Nobody can communicate except by going through these people."

I suppose no report will touch the real reasons, which we all know. Because that's un-fixable in the world of gov't politics.

Year of the Drowned Rat

Saturday, at the cottage, we had our one hot Saturday of the year. Everybody was out, celebrating the 10 cent drop in the price of boat gas. And that was that,our one nice day.

Looks like this is shaping up to be the worst cottage summer in 20 years. So much for Global Warming Mr. Gore! I would think that all the young people on the lake don't even remember a bad summer, full of rain and bugs, but here it is! And I'm worried that we'll get more of this, now that Gorism has been proven to be a pile of shit, and we're in for sunspot cooling.

At least the sauna has been heavily used. I expect to see them sprouting all over the lake now! It's the only way to get warm this summer!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Thanks to my supporters

I have the ads on the site because I love to see the pennies fall from heaven. Normally, I have an exciting one penny per day, but yesterday I had 8 cents! Keep the love flowing! I'm off to the cottage, where it should be very hot and sticky. However, there appears to be a cold front coming in, which means I can fire up the sauna.

Last week I was catching some of those nasty rock bass. Cindy the wonder-dog diligently did her job of catching the floppy fish on the dock and bringing them up into the forest. Of course, the next day I have to heave them back into the lake, which feeds our huge pet snapping turtle. When some people see her, they swear off skinny dipping for good. I don't know why...

French nuclear geeks are human after all

For a while I've been saying that the French are highly overrated with regard to their nuclear program. That's because they live in absolute national secrecy. But one thing they can't hush up are radioactive leaks. Will they now get a bunch of them? Will there be a really big one? I tend to think so, but only time will tell....

Thursday, July 17, 2008

UK nuclear name change

This is a boring self-serving press release. The only interesting bit is the nuclear waste handler use to be called NUKEM! They have now changed their name to something less pronounceable. I wonder if somebody actually told them? If they merged with Duke Power would they be DUKE NUKEM?

I wonder how many years they stood there asking: "What are you laughing at?"

Update on Japan earthquake nuclear plant

A year has passed and the plant is still closed. It looks like they hit 60%g, but there is still no velocity information. I think the lesson here is learning to assess the damage with proper instruments, and having a plan if the old design assumptions are exceeded. Unfortunately, nobody is listening.

Career in earthquakes

A nice article on careers in earthquake engineering. Very glamorous, just like the life I led. :)

Another American earthquake awareness project

I just collect these in a wistful manner, looking at what other cities are doing. You'll never get this in smug Toronto! Oh no, that would be admitting something is wrong, and the city is busy saving us from pesticides. At least they are thinking of taking down the Gardner before it's taken down for them! (just being alarmist! Just kidding!)

Tough luck for Vancouver

I'm always interested in the electricity grid, and its propensity to act in a fractal, self-similar manner. That means the grid acts as an earthquake zone, power law, and non-linear. So you get lots of little failures, and then some really big ones.

Vancouver got a taste of this. This power failure was equivalent to an M7! As with a real earthquake, businesses don't get compensated for the interruption. They're supposed to have business-loss insurance anyway!

The reason for a power-law grid is general stupidity, and group-think. Every small element of the grid resembles the grid as a whole. It's a perfect child of Techno-bureaucracy!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Charleston does some earthquake planning

Yep, Charleston had their big earthquake, so they are planning for another one. Not a chance in Hell they'll get the same thing. It will be another identical zone in Eastern North America, like Toronto, or New York. Since they haven't had an earthquake, they don't do any planning.

Getting your Wacom pen digitizer to work with Linux

I love my Wacom. In fact, thousands of people ask me how I make my lovely drawings (er, perhaps not), and I would tell them, if they ever asked, that it's my Wacom!

It does pressure, tilt, and all sorts of things I never use. My friend who teaches high school says that the version with a screen built in, is a great teaching tool. Wacom is also neat in that it works perfectly with Linux. Many companies are absolutely hostile to Linux and never work very well, or use binary drivers. With the Wacom, the drivers can be added to the kernel because they are open source.

Just follow the instructions on the Linux Wacom Project, and everything will work. My pictures are still ugly, but I have fun doing them!

More geological hot stuff: Drumlins

I'm inspired to write about hissy-fits in geology. One that I was involved in, concerns the origin of glacial drumlins. These are streamlined hills found in Ontario, and other places.

They are very cute. But what caused them? Some say they are formed by the mashing of the dirt by advancing or retreating glaciers. Some say they formed under the ice, in high water currents, and some others say they were just plopped down by a disintegrating ice sheet, and later modified by currents.

It's all laid out here. If anybody wants a fight, I am willing to take any side!

Yuk-yuk Mountain to cost more than Obama's campaign

This just in! A new cost estimate for that debacle of nuclear waste, a testimony to the follies of man. Of course, I always think it's funny that the 'anti's' and nimby's complain of high costs, when they drive costs up. Nevertheless, Yuk-yuk Mountain is a monument to stupidity!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

The Great Hotspot Controversy

I just dipped into this the other day. Seems this is as 'hot' as it gets in geology-land, almost as big as the dinosaur killer thing!

I've always loved hotspots. They were right there from the beginning of plate tectonic theory, and the great Tuzo Wilson, whom I had the pleasure of meeting personally, made great use of them.

In my early days, hotspots were made out to be great magical things that shot out from the deep mantle, and stayed absolutely stationary with respect to the inner earth. Of course, the plates slooshed all over the goopy layer, but the hotspots stayed resolute and pure. The plates slid over these markers, and showed the absolute motion of the plates. The Hawaian chain is an example of this.

I was an 'absolute' believer in this theory, since it was like the thermal 'Fist of God'.

Unfortunately for us supporters of 'Spiritual Purity in Plate Tectonics', there wasn't a shred of evidence for this theory. And over the years, the nasty reality of Science has chipped away at the stone edifice. There's no chemistry to prove it, no deep seismic scans, no nothing.

Alack a day! What to do, what to do? Well, ditch this old crap and go on to something new! It has been noticed that hotspots are born, have some fun, and die. As well, they have never scanned lower than the goopy layer. They stay in one place more than the plates, but they do move around.

This gives rise to the 'new' theory: that they are not 'magical' at all! They are a consequence of everyday old plate tectonics!

Seems when the old oceanic crust subducts, as over in Vancouver, there are some wild-blasty volcanoes (like Chaiten), that live off the cooked water from the dessicating crust. And so that old dry crust has been ignored and forgotten. But it bites back! Seems all this old crust hangs around at the bottom and cooks, and melts, like chocolate. When there is a whole giant pool of it all hot and bubbly, it bursts out. Normally, this process can be activated by some sort of tension, such as plate separation, or continental drift.

The sub-continent of India really opened one up, which became the Deccan Traps, and the same for Yellowstone. If these things open up under a continent, all hell breaks loose, as the continental rocks are cooked and explode out with world-wide, extinction-type consequences. Believe me, we don't want this happening before the Sun blows up!

Once started, the hotspot sticks around for quite a while and the plates ride over them. This happened in Quebec with the formation of Mount Royal, and the whole line of similar mountains, down to Boston, and out into the sea.

Greek islands in stress shadow of M9 Sumatra

Ever since I saw that article I wrote about, I look at all these earthquakes in a new light. China and Japan had N-S thrust earthquakes activated. Now Greece would have N-S extensional earthquakes activated. A big earthquake just happened in this pull zone. Maybe they'll get two?

Monday, July 14, 2008

Reinstalling Linux on the EEEPC

The Asus eeeeeeeeeeeeeepc is a wonderful machine. The boys took it to Europe, and used it constantly in wifi spots, such as bigmacland. But the default operating system is a bit of a dog, and is disowned by Xandros, and Asus doesn't know English too well.

So, it is inevitable, that if you continue to do updates, you will fill the teeny disk, and bugger the whole system. What to do?

Well, install Xubuntu, which works great, and has less security holes.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Fun with Geology - AECL ACR1000

I'm back for a week, into broadband-land. You can't do a blog on dial-up!

Since everything nuclear is bottled up, tighter than the lid on Cheez-wiz, I'll make something up! Today's boring story is a recipe for doing a really slack seismic job for Darlington.

I'm now convinced that they will go for the ACR-1000, because of the Ontario jobs, and it's super-advanced design that can jam all those mega-watts on a postage stamp. As we all know, super-advanced AECL technology is super-cool, and Maple-icious!

The ACR-1000 has the advantage that it's not even designed yet, and thus has no level of 'seismic certification' as practiced by those crazy Americans. This makes it quite easy to do the old seismic shell game.

So basically, the environmental assessment (as reviewed by the Mayor of the local town), will gloss over the geology and seismicity, since the plant has no effect on the billion year old rock environment. However, they will dig up some old studies, just to pad the document some more. The mayor will love it!

The geology and seismicity will be chopped short by the statement "We have no clue what type of plant is going up, so we're giving up on the details."

OPG and geology remind me of this story told to me lately by a water polo mom. She had recently lost her husband, so I asked whether her many kids were really chipping in with the housework. She rolled her eyes and said "Ya think?". She then told me how she had water polo girls staying over and phoned her son:

"You've got to vacuum, we have company."
"I don't wanna vacuum, I'll do something else."
"Then pick up the dog poops."
"I'll vacuum."

So OPG is the kid who says "I don't wanna do geology." But nobody's telling them to pick up the dog poops, instead. So I don't really blame them.

Now, to continue this article, they won't do much seismicity in the env. ass., and slough it off for later. But later, they invariably say the seismic was covered in the ass. They assume nobody reads anything, which is a good assumption.

Meanwhile, AECL comes in saying that their gee-whiz, flying car technology, is good for any type of earthquake, and nobody says boo. It all makes for the 'perfect storm' of inactivity.

But we all know in the earthquake-biz, it's what you don't know that you don't know, that kills you. Every significant earthquake comes up with surprises. As Japan has shown, it's all the minor components that cause problems in an earthquake, and if there are enough of them going tits up, then you get radioactive release. Of course, it then helps (not!), if you give the impression that you don't know what the hell is going on!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Hope springs eternal for earthquake prediction

The latest news is that they can detect signals before an M3. Whoopee do! Would the signal scale to a bigger earthquake? I doubt it. I find the biggest problem with earthquakes is that everybody tries to apply linear thought to a very non-linear problem, and it never works.

Big Becky Clears St. Davids Gorge

They must have started from the power station end. Becky has cleared the gorge without getting stuck! Another dire prediction from the Fishmeister has gone down the toilet! Now it should be clear sailing for them, and only a few million over budget. You'll notice the contractor is already saying that the geological conditions were misrepresented by OPG. This is code-speak for Big Extras!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

OPG dishes out money

Yeah, OPG is dishing out money for the local mayor to hire his cousin! They are really a peach!

Water polo cottage

Beautiful day, north west gale. White caps on the lake. Tomorrow we get the Ontario Youth Women water polo team. They start by swimming over (4 km!), so I don't use so much gas in the boat! We've got them climbing the mountain to pick blueberries for my breakfast! It's such a good blueberry year!

AECL gets sued

I knew this would happen. You can't go one day 'la, la, we're building new reactors!", and then go the next day "la, la, we aren't building anything!".

When MDS quit the hopeless reactor game, they got a sweetheart deal to get isotopes forever. But now everything relies on the world's most hopeless clapped-out, seismic death pit, reactor, and even they are getting worried.

But fear not! AECL will build the new Super Maple II, at Darlington, and slip some isotope containers into the fuel bundles.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Rubberized city hall

I'm rubber, and you're glue! Everything you say bounces off me, and sticks to you!

I liked this article of rubberizing Vancouver city hall. It might even work, who knows? Personally, I think these things are next to useless, but we must wait until a real earthquake to see what happens.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

The end of the lawn as you know it

We have visions from our childhood of lush green lawns to roll around it and look at the clouds. Forget it! You'll never see those again!

I'm back for one day from the cottage to do some stuff. In this one evening, I have to wash the underwear, trowel out the stinky mess called a fish tank, and mow down the weeds. I've always considered myself a very 'green' lawn man. I use a mulcher mower, I water just the minimum amount, I mechanically pull dandelions, I use very little fertilizer, never use insecticide, etc. All in all, I'm a saint! I had this one little, dirty, dark secret! I would hit some spots with the world's most toxic, deadly poison, called weed killer!

Of course, in Toronto, and Ontario, I can't do that anymore. I'd be labeled a horrible person, and they wouldn't collect my recyclables. But just try to keep a handle on the thousands of other nasty things that grow, besides those wonderful, fuzzy, edible dandelions!

Now, I only mention this, because other cities are falling for the bullshit of the la-la-land'ists. Don't do it! Don't oppose it totally, you'll lose, and sound like a world-poisoner. But their arguments, that they want the freedom to throw their babies and dogs on your lawn, don't wash. My dog loves lush grass to roll around in. She looks at the new Toronto 'standard' and just rolls her eyes, and not her body! Who can roll in a thorny, tangly, ugly mess?

So, work for a compromise, where you give up 'carpet bombing' with Agent Orange, and go for 'spot treatment' only, or some minimum standard. Don't allow them to make you a criminal, as you go with your tiny spray bottle at midnight! (I never do that!). If you actually do that, leave a token weed (no, not that kind!), as proof you don't spray!

If you are in a city hall fight right now, never ask them how other cities are faring -- they'll just say 'they are meeting expectations'. Do your own research with pictures!

The preceding was written by a virus on my computer! Please feel free to throw your babies and dogs on my lawn any day!

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Did the canoe loop again!

Ok, two days after my one-night canoe trip, we had new friends up who wanted to do the loop in a day! So we did the whole canoe loop with the nasty 1.6 km portage, but we brought garbage bags and picked up all the litter! It really is pretty, and this time I had a light canoe to shlepp. My crazy friends say that without craziness, you don't enjoy life!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Life at the cottage

Here I am, surviving after my one night canoe trip. The weather is finally becoming summer, after the most horrible June ever. We did the canoe loop in the upper lakes. This is a beautiful area, but it has a sad story. For years, it was an unknown gem, found only in canoe books, but then some nasty government committee, with nothing better to do, caught it in their sights. Having already screwed up Bottle Lake, they went after the 'Kawartha Signature Highlands'. This group had no money, but they had to justify their expense accounts.

So they declared this area a provincial park, with no funds. Sure they had grand visions, but it required millions of dollars. So they just declared it a political park, and ran away. With the added advertising, more people came, who were slobs. We were just up, and the camping areas were messy and unkept. I don't think they will ever finish this job, by putting in a proper gate, rangers, and camping permits, like Algonquin.

Anyway, that's my gripe! We had lots of fun, and I caught an eating fish, and we bbq'd it! We stopped at a lunch spot, and I saw an area that the dogs avoided. I thought I heard a growling, and as I was picking blueberries, I actually heard loud snoring! In front of me was a snoring cave! We decided to cross any campsite off our list that had loud snoring caves!