February 29, 2016

Midterms Are Upon Us

Posting is, therefore, likely to be intermittent. Here, as atonement, is something to tide you over that seems to cover all bases. 



Artist Unknown, but it appeared recently in Nyan-Type 

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Super Tuesday

Can the Trumpeting be stopped?




No..  I mean...

How 'bout we just put the whole post below the fold. 
more...

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February 27, 2016

Warp Speed

 Instapundit reports that Nicholas Meyer will be executive producer on CBS's new Star Trek Series!


Wrath of Khan and The Voyage Home (which Myer directed) were Star Trek at its best and the last that really kept faithful to the spirit of the old series before the deliberate shift in philosophy and tone that was evident in TNG. 

CBS seems to be shooting for the old Desilu magic. 

This could actually warrant some attention. 

UPDATE: Belay my last Meyer's role is not so critical as we were led to believe. So much the better...

...it will make the inevitable disappointment that much more exquisite. 




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Gate Episode 20

In our latest story, Itami and friends go dowsing for adventure, which takes them far, far away from the actual plot. 

Said plot focuses on the the continuing political machinations in the Imperial capital, the efforts of the Japanese government to not exacerbate the situation and a brave little girl who can think on her feet. 


"Well, sir, these may look like mother of pearl, but if you observe them closely you'll note they are, in fact, solid brass."


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Bad Day in Superhero School

Some days, even the best efforts just do not pan out.



The above captures a moment of introspection from this week's Sir Mix-A-Lot tribute episode of Phantom World which, despite a few cute moments and an amusing attempt to get Minase to smile,  pretty much involved the audience doing this for 28 minutes....  


"Oh man, that's just wrong!"
 

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February 24, 2016

Tornado Warning

Weather just turned exuberantly suboptimal.


UPDATE:  Damage in the immediate area is minimal, but less so in other parts of town.  I got to hear O.D.U.'s tornado siren for the first time last night, when the second wave of squalls passed through.  This is not unheard of here, but tornado season doesn't usually start for another month or two. Note that these storms are absolutely nothing like the monsters that Don deals with. 

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Yay Robots!

Yay! I'm 18 months from retirement.

Yay! I might make it before this replaces me. 


This is really impressive. The ability to get up and cope with a Teamster with a pole represents a genuinely amazing amount of progress and yet leaves me with ever so slightly mixed emotions. Of course this is much more the sort of concern many of us expected in the 21st century that 9th century religious fanatics, so we should count our blessings. 

I'm not going get genuinely worried until they equip it with a phased plasma rifle in the 40 watt range.

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February 22, 2016

Oh...So Marissa is a Necromancer?

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Techweasels Unmasked!

Over in the comments section at one of the cool blogs, Brett Bellmore appears to have worked out one of the many proprietary techniques in the repertoire  of Overton's Window Moving Service. 


 I'm convinced that the modern social media business model makes sense. It just doesn't make financial sense. 
The new business model is to build up a large customer base by being useful and reasonably impartial, and doing it at a loss to attract customers. Then, at some point, when you decide you have enough customers, you take your profit. 
But, not in the form of money. In the form of political influence. You've got eyeballs, you feed them a skewed version of reality designed to effect how they vote. You've got customers who are of the opposite political persuasion, you screw with them, and extract from them the opportunity cost of switching to a different platform right in the middle of an election campaign. 
Sure, your company tanks, customers eventually flee. But not before you've thrown an election. 
The big investors in companies like Twitter don't object to this, because this is the profit they were looking for. They weren't buying future income, they were buying a chance to push politics in a direction they like.

Yeah.
That's pretty much what's been going on


Damnit...If I'm going to live in a futuristic dystopia, I want flying cars. 

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Peace in our Thyme

All is tranquil and quiet inside our spice cabinet.


Elsewhere however:

Iran is preparing to launch another satellite. This is, of course, impossible, since such activities were forbidden by the recent nuclear agreement. Oddly enough,  the Simorgh launcher seems to be very close design-wise to the North Korean Unha launcher that launched a similarly forbidden payload into orbit earlier this year. That could indicate close cooperation with the DPRK on weapons development, which would mean that Iran might be continuing its nuclear program abroad. That's silly of course since such an unlikely development would render the whole Iran agreement nothing more than...



 

In what is surely unrelated news, North Korea seems to be readying another nuke test.


All evidence points to a Chinese crackup, or an explosion of violence against its neighbors and the United States, or both



Meanwhile, Here is a map of all the cultural heritage sites that have been razed or attacked by ISIS and its affiliates. 





This Foreign Policy Article is behind a paywall, but its headline gives a short, but comprehensive overview of the world situation.

That piece does cover everything but I prefer to leave on an upbeat note and one bright side to all this is that the disappearance of dangerous nuclear material in Iraq is actually pretty low on the threat list. 

UPDATE: As Steven pointed out in the comments section, that missing nuclear material was found...in a gas station in Iraq. 

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