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Everything posted by efaardvark

  1. Just started YU-NO. Only 2 episodes into it, but it looks like it'll be fun to unravel the big ball of wibbily wobbly timey wimey...stuff.
  2. I understand it is kind of chilly in other parts of the country ( ), but here in the parking lot at work it was 98 and sunny at noon. ps.. I might be a bad person for the rofl thing.
  3. Re: FirstWorldProblems... We have TWO back doors! At some point somebody added a room in the middle of the back of the house, and a door was added on both sides of the addition to access the back yard. As for the door I use... now i don't know how to answer this. We have a loooong driveway along one entire side of the house. There's a door in back that I usually use because it's up near the garage where I usually park the car. But the door is actually in the side of the house, facing the driveway. Would that make it a back door or a side door? And yes, I just posted to confuse the issue.
  4. I accepted a big $$ contract in KSP to land a 7-kerbal, wheeled "outpost" on the Mün... I think I'm going to name it Catbus.
  5. So there's currently an uproar in Japan about a "glasses ban" for women in the workplace. Discuss.. ( if you just heard, "ふゆかいです". )
  6. Just read that KSP2 has been delayed for a couple months. Not exactly unexpected considering the claims. It might even give me time to complete my latest KSP1 "career". I did my first major Mün mission in that and ran into .. unexpected difficulties. Mostly of my own making of course. I can report that all kerbals made it back safely however. Eventually.
  7. The second pic kind of looks like something from Azumanga Daioh.
  8. Designing a new ore transfer vehicle for surface ops, getting familiar with how some of the new hinge/servo parts from the Breaking Ground DLC work.
  9. I don't really get into the Christ mass-shopping season. If I can manage to take a few days off from work I'll be happy. Ideally I'd eat like a pig on turkey day, then go into hibernation until sometime around late February or early March, but my boss won't take a hint & just says I don't have enough vacation time. Been there, doin' that. This Saturday I took the shutters off the laundry room closet area where we hide the washer and dryer so we can get to the old machines and get them out and the new ones in. The guy from Lowes was supposed to be calling me this week to schedule delivery & installation.
  10. I don't even remember the first anime I saw. It was all just "TV" back then, and "cartoons". There weren't even any tapes to buy/rent back then, so no "anime" display section at the stores to help make a distinction. I remember the westernized stuff like "Tranzor Z", (Matzinger Z), "Star Blazers" (Space Battleship Yamato), and "Speed Racer" (Mahha GoGoGo), but also mixed in were not-anime cartoons all the way back to Felix the Cat and Casper the Friendly Ghost, and then later stuff like He-Man, Thundercats, etc. The whole saturday morning cartoon thing. As a kid I just watched it all. Only later did I start making the distinction between "cartoons" and "anime". Some of the westernized stuff was barely what I'd call anime these days anyway.
  11. Got the latest KSP (1.8.1) patch, the Breaking Ground DLC, and all but one of my usual mods installed. As soon as Kerbal Alarm Clock gets updated for 1.8x I'll be all set to make what will probably be my last career game runthrough before KSP 2.0 gets released.
  12. Looks like Spitzer project has set the date to end operations.


    1. Show previous comments  2 more
    2. Wedgy


      Omg yes I have seen those pictures but wasn't aware they came from the Spitzer. That is so cool!! Thanks Spitzer

      So when it retires will the James Web be doing about the same work, or does it have some extra shiny new tricks to show off? 

    3. efaardvark


      JW is the dancing bear of telescopes.  It is more ambitious, much bigger, and much, much more expensive.  So expensive that they had to make it an international project to bring in money to pay for it.  But with other users (and their money) came more requirements, a couple redesigns, and more delays, all of which made it even more expensive.  The people running the project originally said they could do the whole project, including life-of-mission operating expenses, for less than $1B (US) dollars.  Last I heard they've already spent $8B, and they haven't even launched yet!

      Anyway, assuming they do launch and it works as advertised it will be taking over duties of both Hubble and Spitzer, as well as an ESA telescope called Herschel.  (Again, they always throw around the "Hubble" name, but it will also see in infrared better than Spitzer, and both Hubble and Spitzer projects are being shut down in part to pay for JW.)  JW will have over 6x the collecting area (mirror size) and more than 15x the field of view of either Hubble or Spitzer so it should give us a lot of cool pictures.  There's a good comparison online here.  Of course, given the number of people who helped pay for it there will be a pretty long line of astronomers waiting to use it as well.  :D

    4. Wedgy


      Yeah no kidding, I bet the hype is on another level. I can't wait to see what it finds. 

  13. This Year's pumpkin-carving competition...


  14. efaardvark

    Selfie Thread

    Probably not an ocean. Mars is so small that the heat from its formation and any heating from nuclear decay has largely dissipated. What is left is not enough to keep the core molten or an ocean liquid. The various Mars rovers and landers have found quite a lot of water ice all over the planet however, and there's probably enough local variation that somewhere on or in the planet temperatures are high enough for liquid water to exist. One of the reasons that there's so much interest in Mars lately from NASA, Musk, Bezos, etc. is because of the water/ice situation. Water makes visiting Mars a lot easier. Water is incredibly useful. Water gets you rocket fuel, breathable air, and of course water to drink. It helps grow crops, it is a solvent for many chemical and industrial processes, etc., etc. It is also heavy and dense. If you have to bring your water with you from Earth it is a show-stopper. If it is already there and accessible then it is an enabler. As far as life goes, on earth we've found microbes everywhere we've looked where there is water, including rock cores obtained from deep underground. Chances are probably very good that if life ever evolved on Mars then the same sort of situation exists there as well. The Curiosity rover has even found some evidence for this. Curiosity's instruments are more directed towards investigating geology than biology or chemistry but it has found widespread evidence of surface water in ages past, as well as mineral deposits characteristic of biological processes here on earth. Obviously that's on the surface. If any life ever did exist there it probably can't now, given the present conditions. Underground though, where the radiation and the highly oxidizing perchlorate chemistry on the surface can't reach and where there could still be damp areas, there might be pockets of subterranean microbial life similar to what we've found on/in this planet. My favorite though is Saturn's moon Titan. It is bigger even than Mercury, and has an atmosphere 50% more dense even than Earth's. At the same time, being so small, it only has a gravity about 1/10th as strong as Earth's. That makes things like aircraft much easier to build and operate. In fact, you could probably fly around yourself under your own power with a set of mechanical wings. The surface is similar to Earth's in a lot of ways too. Water on the surface of Titan is frozen solid and more like rock (or flows from the interior like lava), but there's a lot of hydrocarbons like ethane and methane that are liquid and physically act like liquid water does here on Earth, including evaporating, condensing into clouds and rain, flowing in rivers, and pooling into oceans and lakes. Based on what The Cassini spacecraft saw, the surface of Titan is as active and interesting as anything here on Earth. As if that's not enough Titan has other interesting geological layers below the surface. Because of tidal heating Titan's interior is warm enough for liquid water to exist. Like I said above, on the surface water behaves more like rock, but underneath the icy layers above there's probably a substantial oceanic layer composed of liquid water. Below that would be the "real" core of actual rock. Again, because of the tidal heating there are probably hydrothermal vents at the bottom of Titan's "underground" water ocean. It is quite possible that life could exist in and around such vents, as it does at the bottom of Earth's oceans.
  15. efaardvark

    Selfie Thread

    The shirt showed up just after the GRACE mission's preliminary results detailing the severe depletion of the aquifers in the state's central region at about the same time as Mars (which once was thought to not have ANY water left) was discovered to have what is possibly a planetwide permafrost layer just beneath the surface. The Phoenix lander literally found water ice within arm's reach and just a few inches underneath where it landed as soon as it started digging. Also Mars is considered a tiny planet - second smallest in the solar system, after Mercury - while California is considered a huge state. True, Mars is way, way, bigger in absolute terms, but as part of the joke it made some sort of sense at the time. Maybe you had to be there.
  16. I spent far more time than I should have today at lunch proving to myself that all these balls are the same color.  :D


  17. Not a big fan of Naruto tho. Dr. Stone is on my list but I'm a post-season binge-watcher and I haven't seen it yet.
  18. Did not smell smoke this morning.  That's always good.  AND we still had power!  Even better.

    The clothes dryer was not feeling well however.  Started the laundry and discovered it was taking forever to dry the clothes.  Gave it a once-over but this is a (very) old dryer that has been repaired many times already so it could be pretty much anything.  The dial to set the heat and one of the mode selector buttons don't stay attached.  The lint trap bracket is cracked.  The bearing for the drum that tumbles the clothes rattles and probably needs replacing.  So does the blower.  Etc.  Etc..

    So a not-so-quick trip to the nearby Lowes (hardware/housewares/appliance chain store) and I've got a new dryer set to be delivered and installed in a couple weeks.  New washer too, since it has a number of issues as well.  Got it at the same time as the dryer and it too has been repaired at least as many times.  Expensive (isn't everything these days) but a new washer/dryer every couple decades isn't so bad.  At least this way I hopefully won't have to deal with any laundry-related issues for another decade or so. 🤞

    Meanwhile I also upgraded Ubuntu to 19.10 "Eoan Ermine" last night in a fit of madness.  I was a little worried since 19.10 had depreciated 32-bit software support and updated the kernel from 4.18 under cosmic to 5.3.0 under eoan.  Bash went from 4.4 to 5.0.  Gcc went from 8.2 to 9.2.  Bumps on the 3d and AMDGPU gfx driver(s) too.  Lots of moving parts, several critical for the things I do.  Net result:  Looks like my local server running the RLCraft modpack is down for good.. probably a java thing.  (1.8 -> 11.0.. yeah.)  KSP is still fine however (checked that much before upgrading), as is my minecraft client/launcher (once I updated to the most recent version that is).  Spotify, Discord, and everything else I've checked also seems ok.  So far, so good.

    Can't tell if I'm winning or losing this week.

    1. Show previous comments  2 more
    2. Illusion of Terra

      Illusion of Terra

      Definitely agree to this. As far as I know, I don't own any 'smart' appliance so far. I really don't see the point anyway. Also, one of the firs things they taught me in engineering was that generally speaking it's a great idea to use as few parts as possible, because it reduces the possibilities of dysfunctioning elements.
      I am glad that there (still) are at least some things we can fix ourselves. I am given to understand that for example in apple computers it is usually not the case that you can even exchange simple parts. If I look at laptops nowadays with RAM modules soldered into it in a way that you can't really desolder it without damaging anything (at least with my primitive soldering irons), I really envy the days when I mainly used tower PCs.

    3. Wedgy


      We're in the same boat... Had our dryer smoking on us last year but luckily we just had to replace a part. Though it is on its last legs. Our washer is falling to bits now and the part to replace it is so expensive we've decided to just get a new unit entirely. Wish I lived in a warmer climate I could just dry everything outside but alas doing so here would just freeze them solid. 

    4. efaardvark


      Heh.. be careful what you wish for.  I happen to live in one of those places with a warmer climate.  Lately I don't know from day to day if I'm going to catch fire or just lose power.

  19. Updated to Ubuntu to Eoan so I'm "testing" everything to see what broke. KSP did not break. Minecraft has issues. Had to download and reinstall the launcher even to launch local games and connect to realms. My RLCraft server won't start at all. <moment of silence while sad trumpets play in the distance> Probably just the newer java, but tbh I might not even bother. Like most of the high-end games (high in terms of hardware requirements) Minecraft is going to get some refactoring to enable better multithreaded performance over the next year starting with 1.15. Unfortunately the RLC modpack is based on 1.12, and I had a hard time even getting it all running in the first place. Maybe if they update the modpack to use MC1.15+ I'll try again. For now though .. it was fun(?) while it lasted, but I'm not going to waste too much time trying to get all the old mods running. If I was really that interested I could always go find or set up a public RLC server. I find that I am not. I need to get back to KSP anyway.
  20. I can see that, er.. you know what I mean. Actually, if we're talking special formats I guess I am kind of interested in some of the 4K+ work being done with 360-degree streaming formats. That + a good VR rig could be awesome. Even 4k might not be enough for HD-quality, 360-degree FOV. You want to talk huge bandwidth requirements though...
  21. All true, but I'm old enough that I can't even SEE in 4k, so until & unless somebody comes up with bionic eyes all that's wasted on me. Regular 1920x1080p HD is about my limit. They gave me 96dpi widescreens at work last time they updated my workstation & I had to increase the font size because I couldn't read anything anymore. Kind of a good news, bad news thing goin' on there. Anyway, for me the convenience of files trumps the quality of discs/players. I'll probably never upgrade to 4k or whatever they're calling the SCFE UHD resolution(s) beyond that. I literally can't see the benefits, and like you say the file sizes and bandwidth requirements are huge.
  22. A disc player?? How... retro. I can say things like that since I still have an old VHS tape player. Though these days I mostly rip all my discs to the hard drive as soon as I get them, then put the disc(s) on the shelf, basically un-played. (Plex and Synology FTW!)
  23. They're talking about my back yard here.  Glendale city limits are about 5 miles from my house!  I have friends that went to GHS, and I myself went to Glendale Community College after HS.  (To get my GED stuff out of the way at a cheaper price than the UC tuition rates, since GCC had a transfer program to UC Irvine where I thought I was headed at the time.)

    Actually, this is kind of how it was when I was in HS, now that I think about it.  You know, cold-war mentality and all that. :D 

    Based on Brian Ralph’s comics series, this adaptation from co-creators Aron Eli Coleite and Brad Peyton imagines an apocalyptic aftermath where Glendale High School students have carved up East Los Angeles into territorial pockets. The cheerleaders, the 4-H club, and the athletes are just a handful of tribes who’ve staked out their own domain in an irradiated landscape. Adults in this “Daybreak” world are either dead or have become ghoulies, zombie-brained walkers doomed to repeat their last innocuous pre-explosion thoughts for the rest of time.

  24. Just started Ascendance of a Bookworm. Liking it enough that I think I'll tag it for a binge at the end of the season.

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