March 26, 2020

Meanwhile in That Happy, Joyfull, Fun Place That We Are Most Emphatically Assured Had Nothing to Do With That Bug Which Must Not Be Named*

...this happened today. 



Ostensibly this is to keep us hairy barbarians from bringing in this virus, which they are now claiming is of U.S. origin







*...and if named certainly must not ever be called Kung-Flu, Corona-Chan, Wuhan Virus, Winnie the Flu, Chinese-Bat-Soup-Death-Plague, or Whu-Ping Cough,

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Well THIS is an Odd Story

There is a report that the source code for the Microsoft X-Box graphics has been hacked and is being held for ransom.



Ummm...

Hacking as I understand it is generally copy and paste, not cut and paste, and even in the latter case, there would be backups and X-Box test beds so  Microsoft ought to still have their code. Presumably this a threat to release it to competitors, but I can't imagine that the X-Box is that far in advance of other consoles in the graphics department that 100 million would be warranted.

IT people please explain this to me, because it looks like a Hollywood screenwriter's idea of a pitch for some mid-budget thriller.



UPDATE:See also hereherehere,  and here... So it's AMD And X-Box graphics card schematics then? That makes more sense.  

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March 25, 2020

A Note About Priorities

In theory, in order to free up shipping capacity for Hospitals, triage areas and such, Amazon and other online shops are prioritizing deliveries of food, and necessary household products like the few remaining cleaning supplies. 


As an hourly employee at UPS allow me to suggest that 149 pound trampolines, 130 pound gaming recliner-chairs, and 144 pound barbecue grills do not, in fact, meet those criteria. 

They do, however, seem to be being shipped in greater numbers that we saw even over Christmas. 

I don't have any idea if my center is an outlier in this matter, but I know that a few of these things will fill up a package car. 

I also know that every bit of me hurts. 

Ow. 

Adding to the overall happiness level is the fact that one is not only man-handling these boxes, but everyone who has sneezed on these boxes in the last 2 days




On the other hand, If this was pleasant, I'd have to pay admission.
Instead, I'm getting paid overtime to work out with free weights so all the people who are PAYING for those 130 pound Nordic-Tracs are saps! 

 

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March 22, 2020

90 Minutes

I spent 90 minutes today trying to figure out how to completely, once and for all end my AOL account that I've had for 21 years. (I got it on a disc!) 


I finally regained access to my old Blogger Blog, which was really the last hurdle holding me back from canceling AOL. Most everything else has either been closed out or switched over, or is utterly irrelevant. 

After an hour and a half of trying to figure out how to do this task, I finally called customer support to be informed that the accounts termination office was closed due to COVID-19. 

I kid you not.

I finally got a person though and after about 5 additional minutes I did manage to get the account removed only to discover that I still have an AOL account. A free one for long time customers. 

AOL is, on paper, a fine service with a lot of bells and whistles, but I pay one third as much for both Earthlink & Proton combined and we live in a digital age so paper performance is irrelevant. and the 6,000 emails I got since the first of the years will not be missed. 




I am now officially living in the 21st century. 

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This Weekend has Seen A Considerable Amount of Heated Debate



In these trying times we should all embrace the healing power of "and". 

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March 21, 2020

Bit of Banality

As usual, the banality is below the fold. 

We're getting hours at work approaching what we normally get in late October, early November at the start of the Christmas rush. 

This means that today's compensatory illustration is tangentially topical.


Sena at Christmas is by Cait. Support him on Patreon and buy his merch at Gumroad.
more...

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March 20, 2020

Tess Ti FAYH

This is a short video that gives voice to what most of us were thinking about "product as service". I wasn't going to link to it as my embedded video to actual content ratio is all out of whack right now. But, there are a couple of things mentioned as asides that really got my goat. First, I had no idea until this brief mention of it just how malignant Google Stadia is. It really is the worst of every awful trend in video games concentrated and wrapped in maliciousness. Likewise the PS-5 looks like it is going to be, well,  evil. I had seriously thought about a Tesla pickup in the future though not so much after this. However, the thing that got me so mad that I got up walked out and left the room and had to come back after cooling down was the "letter of concern" at 15:06. Which indicates that whatever firm the individual is working for (probably a bank or investment firm) has a corporate culture that makes them unfit stewards of other people's money. It also speaks how important superficial fashion is becoming in our society and how perniciously powerful it is for enforcing conformity. With the mean girls in high-school one could avoid them or ultimately matriculate. Now that our corporate class are overwhelmingly foppish aristocrats, there is no escape. 



One thing that SFO only lightly touches on in the above disquisition is that this isn't just a terrible idea from a consumer standpoint. This blog mentioned how bad this could potentially get when discussing the Patreon situation back in mid-December of 2018, and SFO did a really good, source heavy and long deep dive into the antics of the payment processor about two weeks after that. 

About 18 months ago the Chinese social credit system was very topical. "Product as Service" makes that sort of tyranny far worse and much easier to implement.

This is nothing new, but implications of this are terrifying. 
 

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March 18, 2020

Exhausted

Banality is below the fold;

Here's Coronachan and...Stewy. 



more...

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Meanwhile: In New York City

Things are possible now that ordinarily aren't. 


Watch on Bitchute. Clip originally from here I think.

It may be that only those of us in driving distance of New York or at least a "Chinese Bus" stop fully appreciate the implications of this video. 

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March 17, 2020

At The Intersection of Vigilanteism, Consumer Advocacy, and Internet Videography

In a world that is enmeshed in stupid regulation those who expose the corrupt can find themselves breaking the law. 


Then there's these two loons from the current arc of My Hero Academia


"While we wait for the cops to respond, let's read the super-chats."

Gentleman Criminal and LaBrava are two obnoxious LARPers who stream their petty (Ever. SO. Petty.) crimes in pursuit of clicks. Being supervillains, their campy videos keep getting deplatformed, which is playing havoc with their income stream.  Given that monstrous propoganda videos by actual psychopaths continue to stay up (and get more clicks than the silly antics of these two) it seems that their targeting by content providers stems mainly from the fact that they keep embarrassing bad actors who have a lot of clout.  

I'm 3 episodes behind, but this subplot now looks to be rather more consequential than it first appeared. This show, an ode to American comic books, has had some villains that are both well realized and truly terrifying, so I find myself both surprised and amused that this world actually has some 'silver age' villains running around.

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Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Most of us are probably not going to be going out for green beer, corned beef and cabbage today, but wherever you're spending this holiday may it be pleasant. 




Art by Enuni

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March 15, 2020

How?

On January 23 this post was put up noting the surreal situation in Wuhan. 3 days later it was apparent to even a Z-List-redneck-blogger that this was real and a disaster.

This was not an obscure, below the radar story either. On the same day this blog published a post consisting of no content other than 4 separate videos from TV channels and You-Tubers. ALSO on the 26th, the Bitchute channel CoronaChan, was set up to aggregate videos pertaining to the outbreak that were being censored by You-Tube and the media in general. . 

The very next day SFO was chiming in with a video containing footage from his time living in Wuhan and Vee (a doctor) was reporting on the situation and  predicting EXACTLY what is transpiring now in Italy.


On January 30th this was posted on 4-chan's /pol/ board. Ignoring the anti-semitic vermin trolling the thread's OP it lays out a bunch of very good guesses about what would transpire over the next two months.

This was not hard to see coming.

It was actually in the news. A bunch of mid-level you-tubers were on it like ugly on a moose ringing the church bell to get the word out.. HUNDREDS of videos many on site from Hubei were posted about it.  A frickking shiposter on /pol/ played Cassandra and laid out a prophecy two months in advance that proved to be every bit as accurate as Nostradamus wasn't.

 Hell, even your humble Z-list blogger saw this coming and advised all 4 people who drop in here to buy canned goods two months ago.

This was not hard to see coming. The cold equations of exponential growth and the reality of logistics leave few options and present difficult decisions, but there is one question that infuriates given the ample warning and coverage...

How is it that there are so many of the powers that be, and the media acting so surprised?


Art by KeeRaizy

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A Bitchute Question


The blog's crack team of embed management technicians has encountered a conundrum. 
 


(Actual footage of our North American IT department at work.)

If someone is watching an embedded a Bitchute video, is there any way to watch it on Bitchute the same way one can with Youtube? Given Bitchute's diffident search engine, this seems like it's another hurdle for new channels to get traction. 

Obviously this has no real impact on the blog's active channel, which has had 6 posts in 14 months. The active Bitchute channel is just to post videos for this blog especially stuff that's likely to be taken down by You-Tube. I don't create much content and don't migrate stuff unless it's run afoul the YT censorbots.

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A Video Primer on Hygiene in Current Year



Besides the hand-washing, one should familiarize oneself with PPE, its proper use of protective equipment and  ideas for extemporization in a pinch. . 
more...

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March 13, 2020

On This Day in Triskaidekaphobia

Friday the 13th does not necessarily bode ill.

For example, on March 13th 1781, William Herschel discovered Uranus!



"March 13, 1781 was a Tuesday, not a Friday, thus invalidating this whole post."

Details...
Besides, the seventh planet from the sun is actually quite interesting despite the tedious jokes revolving around its name. 


 The planet and its moons have surprising potential. In fact, here is a long post by Matter Beam on how to colonize Uranus!


"...."
What? 




The planet has an anomalously large percentage of helium 3 in its clouds and a bunch of cool icy moons which seem quite comparable to Ceres. 

The system is far enough out to keep the pesky tourists at bay. 
 
Interestingly though, Matter Beam's article has an idea for a potentially interesting "killer app" that could make the the two "ice giants" quite useful in the far future. 

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March 12, 2020

Wait.

No.

Stop.



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March 11, 2020

Well. THAT Was an Odd Glitch

For those of you arriving late the front page just filled up with  duplicates of a half typed post title. 


Anyway, the President just gave his speech and by Trump standards it was  reasonably short on the hyperbole and such. Between sniffles and wheezes he laid out several things being done to deal with the current crisis, among them being a rather belated set of restrictions on travel to and from Europe and pending financial assistance for those ill or caring for family members with the virus which is intended to prevent people from going to work sick.

I think the big takeaway from this will be the sniffling and wheezing though.


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March 08, 2020

An Unusual Source of Protein

Scientists examining a meteorite think they have discovered a protein inside it. This is significant because, while amino acids have been found in space rocks, proteins had not. The researchers are reasonably sure that the protein is not due to terrestrial contamination due to its isotope signature and the fact that the protein is like nothing ever seen before. 

The hemolithin protein found by the researchers was a small one, and was made up mostly of glycine, and amino acids. It also had oxygen, lithium and iron atoms at its ends—an arrangement never seen before. 


"Hemolethin appears to be a new word invented just for this protein. but that's not NEARLY as important as the validating fact that one actually CAN find protein in space!"



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March 06, 2020

Science Babe Doing Science Things

...with varying degrees of utility. 

Side effects may include blunt force trauma, forrest fires, suicidal thoughts. 


Seriously, would you buy underpants from this woman?

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March 03, 2020

A List That Ought to Be Shared Far and Wide

Deep in the heart of Coronaville , it appears that Uyghers are being trucked in from their "re-education" camps to staff the factories in the plague zones that are either unsafe to operate due to contamination or have massive numbers of people out sick. The purpose of this appears to meet government mandated targets for production in an attempt to rescue an economy hammered by having its workforce immobilized by this disease. Of course if members of a demographic that the CCP is trying to exterminate are infected with a deadly pathogen, then, (presumably) they won't be required to be trucked back to the concentration camps. As far as the CCP is concerned, "two bats, one stone". 

As vile as it is, this situation is actually worse than that. 

The utilization of these people in the disease wracked regions is a current expedient, but it turns out that this pool of 80,000 or so workers has been used as a sort of slavery temp service since at least 2017.Long before COVID19 was unleashed upon the world, this cadre has been used by various firms to round out the labor pools at factories that include those of western companies set up in China. 

This practice has been noted in a in-depth report by The Australian Strategic Policy Institute a PDF of which is here. It gives extensive citations regarding the practice and helpfully notes which companies have been taking advantage of this abhorrent service.


Abercrombie & Fitch, 
Acer, 
Adidas,
 Alstom, 
Amazon, 
Apple,
 ASUS, 
BAIC Motor,
 BMW,
 Bombardier, 
Bosch, 
BYD, 
Calvin Klein, 
Candy, 
Carter’s, 
Cerruti 1881, 
Changan Automobile, 
Cisco, 
CRRC, 
Dell, 
Electrolux, 
Fila, 
Founder Group, 
GAC Group (automobiles), 
Gap, 
Geely Auto, 
General Motors, 
Google, 
Goertek, 
H&M, 
Haier, 
Hart Schaffner Marx, 
Hisense, 
Hitachi, 
HP, 
HTC, 
Huawei, 
iFlyTek, 
Jack & Jones,
 Jaguar,
 Japan Display Inc., 
L.L.Bean,
 Lacoste, 
Land Rover, 
Lenovo,
 LG, 
Li-Ning, 
Mayor, 
Meizu, 
Mercedes-Benz, 
MG, 
Microsoft, 
Mitsubishi,
 Mitsumi, 
Nike, 
Nintendo, 
Nokia, 
The North Face, 
Oculus, 
Oppo, 
Panasonic, 
Polo Ralph Lauren, 
Puma, 
Roewe, 
SAIC Motor, 
Samsung, 
SGMW, 
Sharp, 
Siemens, 
Skechers, 
Sony, 
TDK, 
Tommy Hilfiger, 
Toshiba, 
Tsinghua Tongfang, 
Uniqlo, 
Victoria’s Secret, 
Vivo, 
Volkswagen, 
Xiaomi, 
Zara, 
Zegna, 
ZTE. 
 


I note that many of the western entities on this list not only profess their own piousness but frequently presume to lecture us on what they claim are our moral failings (usually sins involving mere words).

China is a brutal dictatorship, and a nuclear power. Our ability to affect their internal affairs are necessarily limited. However, while we can't stamp out all evil in the world, willingly engaging in this atrocity is another matter entirely.

This is a list that needs to get some distribution and attention. 

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