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kleinbl00  ·  7 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: August 3, 2022  ·  x 2

this was also a long time coming

Worthy of note: those numbers are bullshit. The counts per rev on the motors isn't vaguely right, there's a 9:1 gearmotor between the motor and the ballscrew, and the ballscrew calcs aren't even incorporated. And uhh obviously the motor and the ballscrews aren't even physically connected.

But that's the software, cheerfully controlling a servo motor to a tenth of a micron.

The backlash of the gear motor is under 3 arc minutes, or under 0.05 degrees. The backlash of the GT2 belts is 2.7 arc minutes, or also under 0.05 degrees. two of the axes are 4mm/rev ballscrews, one of them is 2mm/rev. .1 degree at 4mm/rev is 0.0011mm, or 1.1 microns.

The machine originally used closed-loop control via Heidenhain glass scales that were totes stolen by the brigand that sold me the machine. With that closed-loop control the machine managed 1-micron precision. I can buy Mitutoyo scales that will work with a module for the servo pack that will get me to within 0.01 microns, or "a coronavirus." I don't think it'll take that. To assume mirror finish for any waveform you need half the wavelength. Visible light starts at around 370nm, so half of that is 185nm, or around 0.2 microns. The motors, for their part, are 24-bit encoders, so 0.0013 arc minutes per pulse or 0.077 arc seconds. 0.073 nanometers per pulse at which point you acknowledge you're measuring absolute fucktons of noise. 4600 pulses just in the combined backlash of belt and gear motor.

But I've taken this creature from "is it possible" to "do I want it."

I got the motors to wake up yesterday. They appeared in SigmaWin and I could jog them. I choked up like I was watching the end of Babe. I've got at least one dead servopak; I paid $190 ea for them because the local guy told me they were $3k and fuck him. I could buy another for $190 used or $400 new out of China or, apparently $1100 out of any scrupulous North American distributor who isn't giving me the fuck-you price. I found this out when I inquired about getting mine fixed and was told they won't fix it if it'll cost more than 70% of the new price or "around $800."

Here's a $4500 mill. Like that surface finish? Here's its stepper motor. A B C D, baby! Mine have 1500 parameters, life-cycle monitoring and not one, not two, but five thousand-page manuals. Which allow fancy moves like this fucking voodoo at 3:30.

I'm literally at "the plane flies." It's not ready for passengers? I wouldn't take it across the Atlantic? But the proof-of-concept has proven out and this fucker IS GOING TO WORK.

kleinbl00  ·  14 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: July 27, 2022  ·  
kleinbl00  ·  95 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Supreme Court has voted to overturn abortion rights, draft opinion shows  ·  

So sample from this list. Broad generalization, not always true, but civil wars are generally fought across three divides:

- Ethnic. My people hate your people and have always hated your people. This covers Rwanda, Yugoslavia, Iraq, Yemen, Ethiopia, Angola, most of the "places you barely know about and would never visit" wars.

- Ideological. Your way of running the world and my way of running the world are utterly incompatible. This covers Afghanistan, Vietnam, Cambodia, Nicaragua, places the US sent troops in the name of domino theory.

- Economical. Your use of capitalism and my use of capitalism are mutually exclusive. These wars are exceedingly rare. I can only think of one.

In my lifetime, the "proper" way to discuss the Civil War has shifted from "it was obviously about freeing the slaves" to "it was obviously about the economic repression forced upon the Southern States by mercantilist Northern industrialists" to "it was obviously about freeing the slaves who also weren't truly freed and anyone who says otherwise is a racist" in no small part because the only logical conclusion of the actual facts on the ground is "unfettered capitalism does grievous harm to humanity." Kinda like how we talk about the vast open unsettled spaces of the American frontier rather than the multiple civilizations we wiped out through targeted genocide in order to make them appear wide open.

I bring this up because you learned about the Missouri Compromise without learning why because history teachers aren't allowed to teach "our current system was bad, is bad and is likely to continue to be bad" their best bet is to lay the facts at your feet and hope you twig to enough of the clues that eventually you'll look shit up for yourself who am I kidding 99% of them don't know either. Look:

- The economic system of the northern (manufacturing) United States was "rich people own factories, poor people work until they're dead or useless at which point we cast them aside and they can either beg on the street or hope they've had enough children that they'll be tended to in their nasty, brutish and short old age."

- The economic system of the southern (agricultural) United States was "rich people own plantations, they also own the people who work on those plantations and if they're kind plantation owners the lives of the people they own will be marginally better than the lives of the people the northern industrialists hire."

- The social system of the northern (manufacturing) United States was "rich people own everything, if you're lucky you'll get a job so you'll have a roof over your head."

- The social system of the southern (agricultural) United States was "rich people own everything including, maybe, you, and if they don't, hardscrabble subsistence farming is pretty much what you got but you're too uneducated and primitive to know the difference, hey look it could be worse you could be black and in chains."

So the Missouri Compromise? Was fundamentally "do we let the economic and social system of the north expand or do we let the economic and social system of the south expand." The North can't make money if employees are free, the South can't make money if employees are skilled. The economic and social systems were far more divided than people have been led to believe; there had been a system whereby southern agricultural staples were turned into northern manufactured goods but globalism meant that non-Southern cotton etc. was cheaper. Expanding free ranching and farming to the West would further undercut the South so in order to protect the Southern economy, Western production needed to be both cheaper and shittier than that produced by literal slave labor. The Northern companies and economists firmly believed the only way for the United States to exist as a country was to increase skilled labor in the south; one of the principle reasons for fighting the Civil War is the British were more than happy to subsidize crappy slave-based agriculture in the South, starve out the North and basically reintegrate the disUnited States back into the Commonwealth.

So everybody learns "it was/was not about freeing the slaves" because "it was about whether your slaves feel 'free' or not" gets your textbook banned in Texas.

I BRING THIS ALL UP because the actual strains necessary to produce a "civil war" in the United States are gargantuan compared to "does a thin/thick margin of popular opinion support/condemn this or that contrived social issue." The amount of "interstate commerce" trappings in the Constitution, leaned on heavily by the Originalists on the Supreme Court, basically prevent Kansas from going to war with Missouri. Not only that, but troops are deliberately scattered about for exactly this reason, the Army hates the Navy for exactly this reason, federal taxes are spread about for exactly this reason.

Yes, we fought a civil war before, yes it was ostensibly about cultural issues, but it was a different country then under very different pressures with very different interdependencies in a very different economic milieu. If anything, the tensions in the United States are entirely about rural vs. metropolitan for the simple reason that the Electoral College is tilted towards rural areas.

I will also point out that the Trump Administration, and their supporters, literally attempted to overthrow the government of the United States through every means available to them... and failed... because the government is largely made up of bureaucrats who want to keep their job. That's it. That's their motivation. Rome persisted for centuries not because of any natural cultural superiority, but because bureaucrats will always preserve their bureaucracy and when you decentralize things enough, your org chart simply can't be decapitated.

The government of Ukraine has fallen twice in the past 20 years under pressures less than January 6, for example, once in 2004 and again in 2014. Yeah, the current situation sucks... but like, a plurality of Republicans want to legalize weed. 42% of Republicans don't want Roe overturned. So do I think shit gonna be ugly? Yes. Yesindoodledydo. Do I think Arizona's gonna start shooting across the border at California?

It's too expensive to even posture like that.

kleinbl00  ·  97 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: How Bitcoin Ends  ·  

Gonna be inline snark 'cuz that's all this is worth

    How about that for a click-bait-y title?

That's all he does. use that magnifying glass at the upper right and search for "rushkoff" and tell me otherwise. Rushkoff is the edgelord's Michio Kaku.

    Watching the bitcoin phenomenon is a bit like watching the three-decade decline of the internet from a playspace for the counterculture to one for venture capitalists.

It was absolutely instantaneous. NCSA Mosaic was developed with public money and released in April 1993. Marc Andreesen took the code and released Netscape for profit in October 1994. He sold it to AOL for $4.3b four years later and immediately got into for-profit hosting. There's this idea that the Web was somehow going to be an altruistic cypherpunk utopia without anyone paying attention to the fact that there have been exactly zero altruistic cypherpunks.

    We thought the net would break the monopoly of top-down, corporate media.

No one ever thought this. They just paid lip service to it so they could ignore patents and trademarks.

    But as business interests took over it has become primarily a delivery system for streaming television to consumers, and consumer data to advertisers.

LOL and they sold it as net neutrality

    Likewise, bitcoin was intended to break the monopoly of the banking system over central currency and credit.

Bitcoin was intended to circumvent tariffs and taxes. Nobody intends to "circumvent the banking system" by taking the books and making them universally public.

    In return for dedicating all that hardware and wattage authenticating transactions and recording them in a ledger known as the blockchain, they are rewarded with bitcoin. It is their verification activity that mines new bitcoin into existence. And the more bitcoin they have, the more committed they will be to maintaining the integrity of the blockchain recording their assets.

I mean, you can sell bitcoin. Used ASIC miners? Not nearly as liquid. What keeps miners committed to the integrity of the blockchain is their investment in the ecosystem. If anything the past couple years have taught us that miners give no fux about politics or geography, they go where the power is cheapest, even if it's Texas.

    In essence, bitcoin is money built and maintained by nerds, based on the premise that good nerds will outnumber the bad nerds.

I doubt you'll find many nerds ascribing to "good" vs. "bad" considering how many of them are libertarians. The argument isn't "we do this for good" it's "you can't tell me what to do."

    Sure, bad actors can dedicate all of their processing power to fake transactions, but they will be outnumbered by those who want the token to work properly.

Miners are resistant to 51% attacks because they lose money. "Working properly" has nothing to do with it. It's kinda weird that Rushkoff is building an argument that Bitcoin was intended to be something out of the Whole Earth Catalog and is now something out of the Sears Catalog rather than observing that a bunch of arrogant nerds thought they could out-computer the government but whatever.

    At its most ambitious, bitcoin is meant to provide an anonymous, decentralized, frictionless, and incorruptible form of transaction–an alternative to the extractive, central, bank-issued currencies now enjoying a virtual monopoly in our economies.

"Extractive" was never the argument - "manipulated" was the beef. of course, BTC manipulation is trivial compared to markets (see, for example, the massive sell-off this morning to cover last night's futures) and that argument could certainly be made, and has been made. Yet Rushkoff seems to be going for a "betrayal of principles" thing here, an odd position to take considering the general chaotic neutral disposition of the average bitcoiner.

    Cryptocurrencies aren’t just about increasing efficiency, but taking down an economic elite that has been using its control over currency to maintain its wealth and power.

Do let's not confuse "elites" with "governments." Which, oddly enough, is an even more laughable assertion but nonetheless one of the core Bitcoin beliefs.

    Central currency is not the only kind of money that ever existed. For many centuries, gold and other precious metals served as money.

There is very little evidence of this. The monetary value of a shekel is fully 1500 years older than shekel coins. The Romans used base metals that were always substantially less valuable than the units of currency they represented. The Chinese used paper money. Only certain backward barbarian kingdoms of the European Middle Ages had coins worth their raw materials. It is accepted as gospel truth that we've always traded with gold and silver, but the fact of the matter is, we've always made jewelry out of gold and silver and used bookkeeping for trade.

    The problem with gold was that it was so scarce and valuable in its own right, that no one wanted to spend it on daily necessities such as bread or chicken. Gold was hoarded, and really only useful for long-distance trading between the wealthy.

I love how these sorts of diatribes always include some form of "we used to use nothing but barter, but barter also sucked" or "we used to use nothing but gold and silver, but gold and silver sucked." It's Van Danicken Syndrome through and through - "us moderns can clearly distinguish how stupid this idea was, but people born before the invention of Twinkies had entirely smooth forelobes and could barely brush their teeth." The fucking Incas were absolutely baffled why the Spaniards cared so much about gold. So were the Aztecs. Gold and silver were an obsession for that period of time between "Gibbon" and "Era Gibbon wrote about" and since nobody wrote about anything in between, we just assumed we'd always used gold and silver for everything even though it absolutely sucks for trade.

    During the Crusades, however, many European communities adopted the more flexible market money systems they had seen used in Moorish territories.

Even primitive Europeans immediately realized how stupid gold was the minute they were shown anything else

    Market money was virtually worthless: like a poker chip or IOU that was redeemed for a loaf of bread or dozen eggs at the end of the day. Unlike gold, which was no good for transactions because it was too scarce, market moneys existed only to enable trade, and often expired at the end of the day. They couldn’t be stashed.

It was actually Marco Polo who introduced Europe to paper money. He even wrote a book about it. inter-village trade was always based on favor economies because it has always been based on favor economies and if you tried to say Jane didn't owe you a dozen eggs because Jane didn't redeem her egg coupon before sunset everyone around you would kick you out of the village and then ask you why they'd bother with a system of account that required a priest since everyone was illiterate.

    But this sort of money was fabulous for trade, which was the whole point of money, anyway. Everybody who had a way of creating value–whether making shoes or growing grain–now had a way of exchanging that value with others. The use of market moneys led to a century or two of wealth creation unlike any we’ve ever seen since.

Or... you know... the Italian city-states created fractional reserve banking.

    The former peasants of feudalism became the merchant middle class, working just three or four days a week, and exhibiting a level of skeletal growth (a sign of health) larger than at any time in the history of humanity, until the 1980s.

Or... you know... the Jews became the merchant middle class because they weren't allowed to work or own land

    The problem was that the aristocracy, who hadn’t created value themselves for hundreds of years, was losing its stranglehold over the masses. As the poor grew wealthy, the wealthy grew relatively poorer. So they outlawed local moneys, and replaced them with central currency.

...seems like that would warrant a link. Or a footnote. Or an example. Or the part of Rushkoff's colon that it was removed from.

"Central" is it relates to Feudal Europe is particularly hilarious considering that it was a mess of Medicis, Borgias, Hapsburgs, Forzas and other families that didn't give a fuck about the peasants so long as they paid their taxes. You are now aware that Italians have been speaking Italian since shortly after the American Civil War and that the rulers of Russia mostly spoke French. England's royal family changed their name from "Saxe-Coburg Gotha" to "Windsor" at the outbreak of The Great War.

    All money was borrowed from the central treasury, at a rate of interest set by the king. People had to pay back more than they borrowed. It was a terrible drain

The drain was taxation. Always has been. This is weirdly wrong. I mean, even people with a real itch against central banks will tell you they're a modern phenomenon.

    The rising merchant middle class of the late Middle Ages became incapable of transacting on their own; the money was just too expensive.

This is directly wrong and incredibly nuts. The issue of the middle ages was paying for conflict, which is one of the reasons the Medicis came to power. Inflation is actually a modern phenomenon, as catalogued exhaustively by Piketty.

    The merchant class became peasants and laborers again, the cities became the only place to work, and the plague soon followed.

It had nothing at all to do with Trade. Bocaccio's Decameron certainly wasn't about a bunch of bored travelers sitting out a quarantine, and when Engels wrote "The Condition of The Working Class of England in 1844" everyone knew he meant 1244. Shit's gettin' WIERD man

    And that’s the system we’re stuck with today, with central banks issuing money, and banking conglomerates lending it to the public and verifying our transactions for a fee.

LOL

    Bitcoin was meant to cut out those unnecessary intermediaries, and replace them with computer cycles. The high processing cost of mining bitcoin–as well as an arbitrary limit on the total number of coin that can ever be mined–keeps the money supply scarce.

Right - 'cuz as we all know, the bitcoin is indivisible which means it cannot be used to trade for anything worth less than one bitcoin.

    But this means that instead of re-creating those high-velocity market monies of the Middle Ages, the abundant ones that worked like poker chips, bitcoin re-creates the market mechanisms of gold, a currency that invites hoarding and speculation while discouraging transactions. Oops.

Ladies and gentlemen, cargo cult economics. I've never seen the like.

    This explains why bitcoin has become less a means of exchange than a speculative pyramid, as well as why the coin’s developers and early investors have ended up billionaires.

AND NOW FOR SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT

    The wealth disparity in bitcoin is worse than that of central currency, with 4 percent of users owning 96 percent of bitcoin. So much for breaking the banking monopoly; this is just hackers seizing the banking industry for themselves.

Well... but by definition, the guys who bought early are... not banks. Just because the Bolsheviks replaced one bad system with another does not mean the Romanovs survived.

    The money itself is worthless. Less than worthless, in fact. We are spending massive amounts of machine cycles and electricity, burning fossils fuels for no reason other than to prove our commitment to the coin.

I mean yeah people do stupid shit for money. I'm not entirely sure Bitcoin is that much more offensive than influencers selling jars full of farts but in a capitalist economy you do what gets you paid.

    What if the “proof of work” for coin were based on something good for the world, rather than aiming so directly for ecological self-destruction?

Ahhh yes. "Proof of plant and other stories by people who don't get it"

    The non-financial uses of the blockchain are certainly inspiring: Smart contracts let people devise and administrate complicated agreements without hiring lawyers. Whole companies and co-ops can be orchestrated and secured through simple sets of instructions that are confirmed and recorded on a blockchain such as Ethereum.

(waves hands) "you know, crypto-whatever stuff."

    It requires a whole lot of code and electricity, however,

Or so I read in USA Today and investigated no further

    Still, even if such currency and contract solutions can work, the part of the story that nobody’s talking about is the ending.

My name is Douglas Rushkoff, and I talked to exactly zero experts about this column

    What happens when all the bitcoin is mined?

Douglas Rushkoff has never learned of asymptotes apparently. "Whelp, gentlemen, that was the last bitcoin. It was fun but now we have to get jobs." (flips switch)

    Bitcoin transactions are authenticated by the thousands of people who dedicate their computers and electricity to building the blockchain.

Of course the argument up to this point would be the utter lack of people but go off I guess

    What is the incentive for people to spend millions of dollars on computers and power once there’s no more kickback of coin?

Oh my god he didn't even google it

    I have asked this question of the world’s leading blockchain investors, miners, and scholars, and none of them have offered a satisfactory answer.

I would pay real money to be a fly on the wall for those convos.

    The best they can come up with is “we’ll figure out when the time comes.” (How is that good enough justification for a combined quarter of a trillion dollar bet on cryptocurrencies?)

wait how old is this

    I spoke to the CEOs of four companies that have either just issued or are about to issue tokens, and none of them had even considered how the blockchain is administrated once the coin is all mined, or what that means to the future of their operations.

Was one of them DOGE? 'cuz I feel like one of them was DOGE. Quarter trillion dollar marketcap would be November 2017. So maybe not DOGE.

    So what will really happen when all the bitcoin is mined? The people and companies currently authenticating transactions for coin will instead insist on service fees.

I... I have nothing but side-eye.

    Already, financial institutions like banks and brokerage houses are rising to the occasion, promoting their own blockchain– as well as authentication services for those who want to keep using existing cryptocurrencies.

This is turning into some weird fever-dream out of the mind of John McAfee.

    So instead of disrupting and replacing the banking industry and its fees, bitcoin and other blockchains simply feed into the banking monopolies.

I mean of course they will. They deal with money and they don't care what kind it is. The world has been running on SWIFT, not dollars, for decades now. Thinking anything else is mockably naive. But the random shit Rushkoff is pulling out of his ass is legitimately unsettling.

    Like the internet, it was meant to engender trust by connecting people directly to one another.

Good old Internet, the world's first trust protocol. It certainly wasn't meant to exchange data.

    This post originally appeared on Fast Company and was published March 1, 2018.

Ahhh, there it is. Topical as ever, Fast Company. And Pocket, giving you psychedelic little fever dreams from The Before Times in an attempt to keep you engaged.

Well, I sank an hour into it just for the snark, so thanks I guess. But holy shit.

Oh, you had a question:

    I'm curious about all y'alls thoughts on this.

My thought is "google 'bitcoin difficulty chart.'" Or if you prefer:

You are standing 21 steps from the wall. Every ten seconds, you walk halfway to the wall. How many seconds until you reach it?

'cuz the reward for mining bitcoin goes down 50% every certain number of blocks. It's called a "halving." You can look that up, too - it happened at block 210,000, block 420,000, block 630,000, block 840,000, block 1,030,000 etc. And yes, because there's a discreet number of bitcoin, eventually (theoretically) the last one will be mined... but right now, that's predicted to happen in the year 2140.

At which point an ANTminer will be the technological equivalent of this guy.

So maybe there are other things to worry about.

kleinbl00  ·  150 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: What the science says: Could humans survive a nuclear war between NATO and Russia?  ·  

Boy.

I was one of the many sensible, rational people who pooh-pooh'd the CIA for their assertions that Russia was going to invade Ukraine because there was no possible way the invasion could be anything but a diplomatic disaster. I did this because there was a preponderance of sensible, rational arguments as to why they wouldn't. When Alexander Vindman took to Foreign Affairs to describe the invasion a month early I assumed that HE was the one without perspective!

There's a great book called Legacy of Ashes about the CIA from before it was the CIA until 2001. Tim Weiner makes the argument that September 11 was a massive misstep by the CIA that hollowed out the agency and left it impotent. Instead they quietly amassed the world's 4th largest air force, completely changing mission and approach in a way utterly invisible from budget requisitions, and proceeded to practice merciless kinetic shenanigans by remote control. And hey - for fifty years, everyone assumed that Little Green Men crashed at Roswell and there was a morgue full of them deep in the desert somewhere. Fuckers kept their listening system secret for fifty years.

Here's what I think, based on what I've read:

- Putin has become increasingly isolated from his own command structure

- Good news travels, bad news is punished

- Russia walked into Ukraine with 180,000 conscripts (technically volunteers, who got in trucks, then were given forms to sign acknowledging that they were engaging in kinetic war in a foreign country under penalty of arrest) while Ukraine has cycled 400,000 combat veterans through Donbass and Lunetsk since 2014

- If we haven't been secretly training Ukrainians as to how to kill Russians since fuckin' 1992 we've missed a beat, and this is not a beat we've ever missed historically

- If this base isn't swarming with Deltas and CIA I will eat my shirt

The general consensus from people who do this stuff for a living seems to be that the Russians are doing worse than anyone expected (for a number of reasons), the Ukrainians are doing better than anyone expected (for a number of reasons) but that Russia could still shell Ukraine down to bedrock.

The general consensus is that India, China and the UAE have been ambivalent about condemning the Russians, but the only full-throated support Russia has is Belarus. Russia has announced they're bringing in Syrian death squads, but nobody in the West professes to understand why, as their effectiveness is dubious.

The Western fiction appears to be "we won't overtly attack from other countries and you will pretend our forces aren't tangling with your forces" which seems to be a difficult fiction for the Kremlin to counter. They have long maintained that Ukraine is a Western puppet but if you look at it now, of course they are, the moral high ground has been squandered on that particular point.

The doctrine the wonks are getting bushy-tailed about is called "escalate to de-escalate." In this scenario, Russia hits Kiev or Mariupol or, say, that nasty base full of Deltas with a battlefield nuke - indiscriminately kills tens of thousands of people, spreads fallout to the west, freaks everyone out about the notion that maybe Putin really will end the world. We'd likely back away, then, and give Russia another Afghanistan. There are two problems with this:

1) China would be bound by treaty to nuke Russia. They wouldn't? But they certainly see how quickly the Western economies can kick you out of the clubhouse. Which would effectively cut Russia off from everything.

2) It would, in my opinion, make Russia such a pariah state that nothing less than a full unconditional surrender and regime change would get them so much as diplomatic status with any other nation that wished to trade on the global stage. North Korea still has diplomatic relations with lotsa countries; they've never nuked anyone.

Right now? Western banks and investment firms are writing their Russian investments down to zero. Russia is threatening to nationalize foreign interests in Russia, which as the White House has pointed out, will effectively eliminate any future foreign investment in Russia this side of regime change. Roughly 25% of Russian calories come from trade; depending on what China, India and Kazakhstan do, the average Russian could give up as much as a big mac and fries every day just through diminished trade. Russia theoretically has massive gold reserves but nobody wants to buy gold from them. The "shame premium" on trading with Russia seems to be around 20-25% which means whatever resources they thought they were going into this with, they only have four fifths of the hard stuff.

The 'winger geopoliticists have long predicted the demise of Russia. There's a baby bust among ethnic Russians, their economy has become increasingly westernized, there's no real support for their military budget, etc. Zeihan (who is an idiot) went as far as arguing that if Putin didn't invade Ukraine, Poland and Finland by 2022, China would invade Russia. And I mean, Putin cut his teeth as a scumbag Stasi intermediary in East Berlin; "police state" is his comfort zone. He's also described as "a gambler" by everyone who profiles him. He may not even know how bad it is - but he knows the West knows and has launched an epic mole hunt.

I think that Putin mulled over Kim Jong-un's place in the world and decided "eh, could be worse." The real question, then, is what are the avenues to returning Russia to the Russian people? I would be pessimistic about that except that Western intelligence has demonstrated themselves to be on point and Western society does not seem to abide by a rule-breaker.

Zelensky has survived between one and a dozen assassination attempts in the past couple weeks. I've read that at least three Chechen death squads have come for him, and that at least three Chechen death squads have been wiped out. Now - it's entirely possible that Zelensky is entirely 100% protected by locals who happen to kick ass. But it's more possible that Ukraine's own ass-kicking security forces have American intelligence, American training and probably more than a few Americans with funny papers.

Which is why I think this ends with regime change. I'm cynical enough to think that the CIA COULD have whispered in the right ears at the right times to make Putin think he could go for it. I'm even jaded enough to think that "Hunter Biden's laptop" could very well have been used to communicate between Ukraine and the CIA out of the watchful eye of known-compromised individual Donald Trump. Put on your tinfoil hat with me: You work for an agency that exists entirely to oppose Russia, and your country has just elected a Russian stooge as your president. What do you do? 'cuz let's be honest - if your counterparty has revised the bounds, and if there has long been grumbling about the lack of symmetry in US/Russian clandestine operations, and if you are truly renegade, do you not swing for the fences?

I'm not willing to say that the CIA drew Russia into a Ukrainian invasion in order to break Russia forever and solidify the "Western" international order in Europe and South Asia. But I am willing to say that they definitely wargamed it out years ago, and that every time we count out the CIA they make us eat crow.

Now what does that look like? It looks like shit for Ukraine. It looks like shit for Ukrainians, it looks like shit for Russians, it looks like war, deprivation, murder, atrocities, PTSD and a whole bunch of horrible shit. For how long? I don't know. I do know that it's tough to keep your job after a failed invasion. Galtieri lasted days, in no small part because we were arming the shit out of the British against our own puppet. Hussein? Hussein lasted a dozen years, which tells you a little something about American involvement in Iraq, I think.

Whether by accident or on purpose, I get the sense that the clandestine service of the United States is principally interested in the indigenous overthrow of Putin, and that "this" does not end until his Dacha has a gift shop. I know it's going to take too long, that too many people who don't deserve it are going to die, that it's going to reshape the world order, and that I'm getting fucking sick of living through history.

Does that answer your question?

kleinbl00  ·  298 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Work Dissatisfaction Driven by Early-Career Workers Looking for Higher Pay and Remote Options  ·  

Believe it or not, I'm sanguine bordering on ebullient... long term. Short term?

So that graph says two things without you even really needing to know what it's graphing: (1) "holy shit" (2) "that can't continue." There's an aphorism in commodities markets: "the cure for high prices is high prices." We're all in the commodities market now, bubba.

You and I have talked about this at length for several years now: automation is coming and that right soon. There's been a steady pressure to unstaff. Hey, great! They're letting you work from home! That means you're now competing against the entire goddamn world for your job. Which means if they can fob it off on a bot rancher from Bangalore to save 20%, they'll do it. And now everyone who could barely afford Silicon Valley is looking at Nowhere Gulch and dreaming of owning serfs, and he'll happily pay for the house with a check because this'll be easier if the wife and five-year-old can get settled in before school starts.

Food? You're literally asking "what happens if Democrats cut entitlements for some reason" and they ain't. They ain't ever. They learned that shit under Clinton - when you fuck with poor people you get Newt Gingrich. Which isn't to say every Republican governor out there isn't going to try on every possible variation of "fuck poor people" because it's "important to their base." Performative evil - that's where the Right is right now.

I used to say "there's opportunity in the Delta." Now I say "It's just the Churn." I was in the music industry when MP3 happened, the movie industry when Netflix happened, and tried to write a book when all the publishers sued Amazon. Before I ran off to join the circus, I interviewed with every acoustical consultancy in Seattle. When I came back, the only one still in business was the one I left.

We knew this. We saw it coming. We looked at the graphs, we looked at the lines, we looked at the empty streets and restaurants and we knew it would be seismic. Now? Now we're all trying to pretend COVID is over as if that fundamental a crash isn't going to leave some deep and lasting scars.

But look.

Michael Lewis wrote an entire book about the skeletonization of the federal government under Donald Trump. Any semi-competent bureaucrat was able to evaluate that there was no room for competence in government, so they left or retired. This was also documented by Bob Woodward in Peril - there was literally zero vaccine distribution plan by the Trump white house. None.

Trump knocked over the sand castle. Dude three-finger-saluted the entire goddamn government for us. 'cuz I tell you what: opportunistic hangers-on don't hang on after the opportunity is gone. Which left an entire ecosystem open to exploitation by pie-eyed, opportunistic Lefties driven by mission.

And now? Now every crisis is gonna be an "add moar socialism" moment.

- Student loans. The Biden administration can literally forgive all of it through executive order. They won't, but they'll definitely fuck with it. They'll wait until things are really painful, though, so that they "won't have a choice."

- Medicaid. Can be expanded aggressively to anybody who got any pandemic assistance whatsoever under emergency proclamation, which is over when Biden says it's over. I'm currently paying $2 a month for healthcare because I cashed an unemployment check. I believe that rate is good for a calendar year at least, and that's only because nobody's pushed it out further. I'm effectively on nationalized healthcare and the Republicans didn't even notice.

- Housing. They've already started murdering the flood insurance subsidies. They could come after the mortgage interest deduction, too. They could also dump money into rural broadband to improve work-from-home feasibility.

- Food. Republicans have been picking away at SNAP for decades but the pandemic gives the Democrats an excuse to expand it, keep it expanded, and nationalize its management. Every state that fucks over its poor people is a poster child for "government overreach."

Don't get me wrong. Everything - everything - is gonna get worse before it gets better. A whole lotta lives gonna get destroyed. Personally? I've already mourned them. This was evident in the data eighteen months ago. All these disruptions are going to fuck up some lives, and I say that with 700,000 dead.

The people flying the plane actually care about the passengers and have actual flight hours under their belt. It's not a state I'd want any of us to be in, but we're here, and I feel like we're looking at the least worst option.

I've been kinda shellshocked since this.

That bill? Right there? Was the first time the Republicans went "actually we don't have the juice to block socialism anymore." They fucking gave up every principle - BEFORE Trump lost! because they knew in their very bones that small government market capitalism would go up like flash paper in a national emergency. Every bill since has been small, un-speechable death-by-a-thousand-cuts socialism and they haven't had shit to say about it because the kinds of guys who really just want Trump to be president because he's Trump are going to cock their heads quizically at some Buckley National Review diatribe against the risk against innovation by subsidized broadband as if they were Jack Russell terriers hearing Their Master's Voice. it's over their heads, man. The "base" barely believe in the gospel of Number Go Up. What they know is their grandsons are doing better with Gamestop puts, whatever they are, than they are with their social security.

I think this has a happy ending. I think it has a happy ending the way Game of Thrones has a happy ending in that a lot of people are gonna die, a lot more are gonna get fucked, everyone with a short attention span is gonna be mad that they didn't see it coming but the world will be a better place and generally-good people will get a generally-good outcome but it's still a happy ending.

We just gotta be among the survivors.

kleinbl00  ·  326 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Done.  ·  

Kirksite and bronze.

Sterle did a pretty nice set for Chaumet. Totally the inspiration for doing this. The FLW stuff looks cooler, the Chaumet stuff is better executed. But then, that's House Chaumet.

Great is the enemy of good enough. I've gone from being pretty damn proud of them individually to being pretty damn annoyed by the inconsistencies caused by shitty investment, challenging forms, awful mold chemistry, failed equipment and a partridge in a pair tree but I'm also cognizant that as heirlooms go, ain't nobody on either side of my kid's family touched that.

it also beats tar out of the official resin garbage.

kleinbl00  ·  427 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: June 9, 2021  ·  

COVID AIN'T GONE YET

So my wife has a colleague. Known her for... fifteen years? Trained under her backintheday, filled in for a couple years when her practice exploded, threw a couple employees her way, their network was built by me. Things have been congenial and polite through COVID 'cuz (A) they're Republican (B) they're anti-vax. So we don't hang out like we used to.

Colleague has a 80-year-old mom who lives with them. And about a month ago they decided fukkit let's vaycay so they ran off to Hawaii for ten days, leaving our posse to cover half their practice. Came back not feelin' great.

They decided to shine it on.

So we've got one person coming into the office with active, confirmed COVID and another person who would if only she weren't so goddamn sick and we're trying to keep this from becoming a public health problem and counseling their one about-to-bail-now employee as to how to not end up in dire peril with the health department. None of this was direct, mind you, all of it was back-channel, our hands are scrupulously clean. Ain't nobody died, errbody on the mend, and when we asked "hey wanna go halvesies on a crate of medical supplies" the answer was monosyllabic.

They ain't talkin' to us. Not because of anything we did, but because their worldview was wrong, our worldview was right, and now we're the bad guys.

Got another friend. She's delivered every grandkid for her ex-boss from back when she was an EMT. Which is a tradition that meant that rather than sticking to her own back yard 80 miles away, she decided to come deliver 20 miles north of us... in our support structure, where we know the EMTs, we know the hospitals, yadda yadda. Home birth, which is always less of a controlled experiment, and the mom was acting woozy and weird. Things stretched out to the point where it wasn't happenin' so it's time to transport to the hospitals we use.

At which point they show up, mom has a temp of 104, crash to emergency c-section, baby hits the NICU, grandma gets kicked out of the suite, and both mom'n'dad pop a rapid COVID positive. But not before they've tromped through half the goddamn hospital.

Greetings from Big Brother! as healthcare providers we can look your ass up in the vaccine database. Which means we know that while this couple said they were vaccinated to the friend? They also said they'd NEVER get vaccinated to the grandma and as it turns out, dad was vaccinated, mom wasn't. 'cuz, you know, lying to your healthcare provider is small potatoes compared to I dunno sub rosa supporting treason.

We'd been talking about going back to home births but we just had this catastrophe where another mom was so stoned out of her gourd that labor pain transmogrified into "my hip hurts" so they sat there smoking spliffs until we had to come crash their house because they weren't gonna make it. That combined with this "Patriots will happily lie to liberal traitors to get what they want" mentality is noping us the fuck out of that.

Right now? 97% of COVID cases are among the unvaccinated. If you're in the hospital? With COVID? There's a 99.7% chance you didn't get two shots.

So yeah we're rolling back protections but that's not because COVID is gone. It's because if you get COVID now it's because you fuckin' earned it and if you earned it, the hospitals now have the bandwidth to deal with your irresponsible, lying ass.

The conversation between the friend and the dad (mom just got off Oxygen yesterday, is still in the ICU) was framed around "well we meant to get vaccinated we just... forgot." Which, okay, if that's what you need to maintain your friendship across the gap of "thanks for driving a hundred miles to leave a flaming bag of poo on the doorstep of one of your friends" more power to you. We'll just not mention the Big Gulp's worth of nyquil and other shit you shouldn't be taking in labor that y'all were using to mask your symptoms 'cuz at the end of the day they aren't our patients (except they are now because we have pediatricians so fuck us I guess).

But fuckin' hell man my kid don't have a vaccine yet and neither do her friends, and the variants coasting around these days are mean.

So also fuck off.

kleinbl00  ·  461 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: How much does Post Malone/Taylor Swift/The Police/BTS actually make on royalties?  ·  

    We have based our algorithm on the data from this article from Soundcharts.

    Once we have the number of monthly streams from Spotify, we multiply the price-per-stream of each platform by the number of Spotify streams.

"Elon Musk walks into a pipefitter's union hall. The average wealth shoots up by a billion dollars per plumber."

So... the "this article" referenced has numbers. Those numbers don't match up to anyone else's numbers and everyone else's numbers don't match up to anything either. There's this need to believe that you can simply figure out how much money someone makes off of Spotify because then we can continue to feel good about paying a pittance to listen to our favorite artists over and over and over again. Your link:

    Another major streaming player is Amazon Music.

    As the other platforms, Amazon, don't publicly share the price-per-stream. This value approximates to $0.01196.

    Taken into account this value, 83K monthly streams are needed for reaching the $1000 mark, the lowest so far, but still high!

The link they took their data from:

    In full detail: Amazon Music Unlimited, Napster and Tidal got the top-3 rates at $0,0119, $0.0106 and $0.0099 respectively. However, don’t get too excited about Amazon’s numbers. The lion’s share of the tech giants subscribers are in fact over at Amazon Prime bundled streaming service — and for Amazon Prime, the average rate came to just 28% of the Unlimited’s payout, or $0,0034.

I worked with a guy who made his revenue entirely off of Youtube. He broke the economics (for him) down quite simply: any video with less than a million views earned him nothing. Did not even show up on his invoices. Any video with more than a million views made him about five thousand dollars. Each subsequent million views earned him about a thousand dollars. But those numbers were really wiggly and I guarantee that's what Youtube was paying him.

Look - a plane ticket from Seattle to Los Angeles used to cost about $300. I've probably bought a hundred of those. The least I've paid is $29 (no airline miles or other nonsense used - Delta was trying to assassinate Alaska Airlines). The most I've paid is $437. The most I've seen, however, is $5998.

And flight prices are hella easier to scrape than Spotify royalties.

kleinbl00  ·  532 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: "Dare Mighty Things"  ·  
kleinbl00  ·  604 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Money talks - Pornhub Just Purged All Unverified Content From the Platform  ·  

LOLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLERSKATES at your freeze peaches

Y'all young'uns know the Tale of Traci Lords? Sure, Crybaby, sure, neckbiter in Blade. Hey let's cue up that video real quick we could use a soundtrack. Traci would approve after all she cut an album with Juno Reactor as her backing band

So here's Traci back when she was Nora Kuzma, a 14-year-old getting raped in Ohio while visiting her estranged dad

Her alcoholic mom was dating a dude who molested her but he had a heart of gold; he hooked young Nora up with a friend of equally loose morals who hooked Nora up with a fake ID and took her to a bunch of auditions

    At age 15, Kuzma became pregnant by her high school boyfriend. Afraid of her mother's reaction, she went to Hayes for help. He arranged for her to have an abortion without her mother's knowledge. Looking for a job to get some money, she was introduced to his friend and started working for her as a babysitter. The woman offered to improve Kuzma's job opportunities by helping her get a fake driver's license. She provided Kuzma with a new birth certificate on condition that if she were ever caught she would say that she had stolen the phony identification. Kuzma now had the alias Kristie Elizabeth Nussman and a new driver's license that stated she was 20 rather than 15 years old. In February 1984, she answered a newspaper advertisement for Jim South's World Modeling Talent Agency. Posing as her stepfather, Hayes drove her to the agency. After signing a contract, she began working as a nude model and appeared in magazines such as Velvet, Juggs, and Club. During August, when she was selected to model for Penthouse magazine's September 1984 15th-anniversary issue, Kuzma was asked to choose a stage name. According to a 1988 interview, she chose Traci—one of the popular names she had longed for growing up—and Lords, after the actor Jack Lord, since she was a fan of the television series Hawaii Five-O, in which he portrayed the character of Steve McGarrett.

Traci? Traci was big. I was in fourth fucking grade and I knew who Traci Lords was. Pinups, videos, she did all the dirty stuff. We were just starting to negotiate puberty and we wanted Traci lords.

THE GIRL WITH THE HAMMER IS SIXTEEN

    After appearing at age 16 with John Leslie (an actor 23 years her senior) in the porno parody Talk Dirty to Me Part III (which won the AVN Award for the best movie), Lords was hailed as the "Princess of Porn". She became one of the highest-paid porn actresses of that time, earning more than $1,000 a day.

"I won't get out of bed for less than $10,000 a day" - Linda Evangelista, four years later

    Lords continued making more movies until late 1985 when she tried to quit the industry at age 17, but returned a few months later. Afterwards, she met Stuart Dell, who became her boyfriend, manager, and business partner. They formed the Traci Lords Company. Dell and Lords made a distribution deal with Sy Adler, an industry veteran who ran Vantage International, that they would produce three movies for the company.

"Tried to quit the industry" is such a laden phrase.

    Two adults who knew Lords, but who requested anonymity, said they saw her picture in the adult magazine Velvet during July 1984 and telephoned the district attorney's office to inform authorities that she was underage, but that an investigator told them, "There isn't anything we can do about it."

Let's review. We've got a seventeen-year-old kid who has "tried to quit the industry" who is only there because her molester hooked her up with an ex-girlfriend who got her a fake ID so she could get an abortion without telling her mom. She's got high school classmates who tried to whistle-blow but nothing happened. What happened next is... some of the most fraught language I've ever seen on Wikipedia:

    During late May 1986 (around three weeks after Lords' 18th birthday), authorities were informed that she had been underage when she appeared in the porn movies. She had lied (according to Lords, it was a "white lie") to law enforcement, photographers, producers, directors, co-workers, and the general public for two years.

Yep, blame the 16-year-old kid for breaking the rules for money and approval.

    Government prosecutors declared that Lords was a victim of a manipulative industry, maintaining that she was drugged and made to do non-consensual acts. Industry insiders, including Ron Jeremy, Tom Byron, Peter North, and Ginger Lynn said they never saw her use drugs and that she was always fully aware of her actions.

Oh well if RON JEREMY says she wasn't coerced

Make no mistake: Traci Lords ANNIHILATED the porn industry. She was Penthouse Pet in the September 1984, the issue in which Bob Guccionne ran nude photos of then-Miss America Vanessa Williams against her consent

    In July 1984 (two months before the end of her reign), Williams learned that nude photos of her, taken before her involvement with the pageant, would be published without her consent in a future issue of Penthouse. Williams believed that the private photographs had been destroyed; she stated that she never signed a release permitting publication or use of the photos in a public format. In contrast, Hugh Hefner, the publisher of Playboy, was also given the opportunity to publish these photos but turned it down stating: "The single victim in all of this was the young woman herself, whose right to make this decision was taken away from her. If she wanted to make this kind of statement, that would be her business, but the statement wasn't made by her."

    The black-and-white photos dated back to the summer of 1982 (after her freshman year at Syracuse University) when she worked as an assistant and makeup artist for Mount Kisco, New York photographer Tom Chiapel. At the time, Williams stated that Chiapel said that "he had a concept of having two models pose nude for silhouettes, basically to make different shapes and forms. The light would be behind the models. I was reluctant, but since he assured me that I would be the only one to see them and I would not be identifiable in the photographs, I agreed.

Owning this magazine is a felony.

It cost the porn industry tens if not hundreds of millions of dollars to clean it up. In my mind? Young Nora realized at some point that the clean start no one would give her was hers for the taking if she was willing to burn her abusers to the ground. So she did. And helped out fellow sex industry victim Vanessa Williams while she was at it. And her actions shook some shit up. Every disclaimer you used to see in porn? Traci Lords put it there. We may not call Section 2257 the "Traci Lords Act" but it's the fuckin' Traci Lords Act. Traci Lords legit flew a figurative airliner into the figurative World Trade Center of the porn industry, surveyed the rubble, said it was good and enrolled at Lee Strasbourg. The only reason she's not a goddamn DC Comics superhero is all the scummy old men who run Hollywood are still pissed.

    One afternoon in 2012, I went to lunch in the Valley at a Hamburger Hamlet with adult veteran Bill Margold, who’d codirected Traci, and adult agent Jim South, who’d represented Traci. Traci, and what happened 25 years ago, was the topic of conversation between these two. Not for part of the lunch, for the whole lunch. The way they told the story was as a noir, with Traci as the ne plus ultra of femmes fatales: She’d scammed the adult industry with a fake ID; had made one movie after the age of 18, a movie she owned the rights to; and then she’d blown the whistle on herself to make more money and become more famous. And the anger of both these men was still, all these years later, hot to the touch.

But that was then, this is now. Then, there were forms, there were lawyers, there were scummy old men. Now? Now there's freedom and sweetness and light and "chilling effects...on the sex work industry" and "literally the "think of the children" argument finely weaponized against the open internet yet again."

Up until that New York Times article, you could find thousands of hits for Traci Lords on Pornhub.

This is like the FBI not screening for Osama bin Laden. This is a lackadaisical freedom from harm so deep that the most obvious, most immediate, most thunderously bad consequences aren't even screened at surface level. This is a company so completely unconcerned with liability that they aren't motivated in the slightest to do the barest due diligence. Could they? Sure - you couldn't find Paris Hilton on there. Why? Her lawyers are meaner. Pornhub was filtering Paris Hilton, whose videos carry civil consequences, and carrying Traci Lords, whose videos carry criminal consequences. And if you don't think that was a conscious, deliberate decision you're fucking high.

And if you're more worried about hypothetical threats to sex workers than actual threats against underaged girls, FUCK YOU.

kleinbl00  ·  621 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: The Last Children of Down Syndrome  ·  

I'm curious as to why we need to augment your self-loathing on this one, Ben. The article is a nuanced, long-form investigation of "velvet eugenics" and the impact of prenatal testing on parents, children and society. By your own admission you've undergone professional and voluntary education and training on medical ethics, so this is likely something you've grappled with your entire adult life. You're an intelligent man, capable of distinction and compartmentalization but lately you've eschewed all that to get people to yell at you. It seems to be a form of "the religious shouldn't breed" and no amount of discussion around "this isn't a religious discussion" or "this isn't a people shouldn't breed discussion" dissuades you from your monolithic pursuit of castigation.

It's a shame because clearly you could add to this discussion but you're instead choosing to obfuscate it with inflammatory language so the discussion can be all about you. What are you worried about us discussing? What are you trying to distract us from? As someone whose life has been shaped by congenital defects I would value your input if you chose to share it. Speaking for myself, we went out of our way to get our kid genetically tested. We absolutely would have aborted if we'd popped Trisomy 21 because yeah - that's an 80% mortality rate with profound lifestyle impacts. Some of the other stuff? We didn't plan. Fortunately it didn't matter. So I have a perspective on this, and appreciate the perspectives of others. And I'm curious what you're so afraid of.

I'm guessing there's an outward "I wish I was never born" performative dance that supports you socially, combined with an inner "but I love my fiancee and am actively planning a future" hopefulness that can't be reconciled, so you go through this "pay no attention to the man behind the curtain!" Kabuki because if you have to admit that you actually hope you wake up every morning you'll be forced to address that you have something to lose now and you're just too spiritually weak to accept that the world would regret your passing. After all, if you value the world and the world values you, you might just have to press pause on your wholesale outward rejection of your entire inherited value system. You might have to examine your core beliefs and attempt to mature as a man. And it's so much easier being the angry product of arrested development.

You're getting lazy with it though. It's transparent. It also demonstrates how uncomfortable you are with yourself and your self image, which is usually a sign of readiness for growth.

I, for one, am here to help. Happy Holidays!

kleinbl00  ·  705 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Online Privacy Should Be Modeled on Real-World Privacy  ·  

    I think it’s easy for people sufficiently interested in this issue to write, or even read, an article like this to overestimate the interest that other people have in the subject.

The argument by privacy advocates going back to the DMCA has always been that people lack interest because they lack understanding. When Disney said "you can't tape football games" the country said 'the fuck you say' and everybody knew. On the other hand, when Sony said "we can sue you for millions if you make a perfect copy of your CD" things were much better hidden. "You wouldn't steal a car LOL" became the reaction of the world seven years after there was any discussion about it; this is one of the reasons everyone publicized the hell out of Net Neutrality despite the fact that it had very little effect on anyone in the moment.

    Consider how often the first button is “OK” and muscle memory says it’s the one you click to make the thing you just requested happen.

That makes it "dark design", not choice.

    Consider how many apps and services are already interlinked, and how hard it might be to figure out what might break if you opt out.

It's not hard to figure out what's broken. Try it. Does it work? Then it's not broken. Is it broken? Then it's broken. I switched back to iPhone about a month ago. I was delighted to discover I could delete Apple Maps. I was more delighted to discover that not only can I use Google Maps in Apple Carplay, but that it's radically more useful than Google Maps in Android Auto. Now - if I try to get Siri to look up an address, she refuses to talk to Google Maps. Apple helpfully asks me if I want to reinstall Apple Maps for that functionality and I cheerfully do not because the dumpster fire that was Apple Maps the last time I used it will never not be fresh on my memory, and having compared Google to Apple with my wife out driving around two weeks ago even a cursory glance at the AIs' chosen behavior reveals Apple to continue to suck.

Apple is making it a lot more inconvenient for me to subvert their native app. They are, however, allowing me to choose to do so. Thus, I continue to work around the lack of Apple Maps.

    Surely at least 99% of ads are ignored. That means all businesses have to spend a lot more to reach their next customer.

Let's hear it for choice! Simon calls me up two or three times a month to honor me with the opportunity to advertise on kiosks at the mall. They can hook me up for a mere thousand dollars a month. "Sure," I say, "lemme see your demographic breakdown and visibility figures for those kiosks." There is generally a pained silence on the other end of the line, followed by a variation of "no one's ever asked for that before" or "why do you need to see that" or "what's a CPM." I then patiently explain that I have an advertising budget that I'm attempting to maximize the utility of and I'm not going to commit to an ad buy whose effectiveness I can't predict. The conversation goes sideways at that point.

Conversely, I have a double-sided jumbotron at a busy intersection. It's dying; it was installed in 2004 and hit end-of-life in 2018 so we're looking at dropping between $30k and $50k to replace it. Now here's the thing: when I told the company to give me a CPM breakdown on that sign, THEY DID. They divided the cost of the sign by the number of vehicles that encountered it daily times the occupancy rate (both figures available from DOT) over the cost of the lease and revealed that spending $50k on a sign is 20 times cheaper than Google AdWords. More than that, our intake surveys ask "how did you hear about us" which is how I know that 20% of our customers come to us through online search, 20% through insurance website search, 20% word-of-mouth and 40% drove by and saw the sign.

As a business owner, I don't feel compelled to spend "a lot more to reach their next customer." I will spend as little as possible for maximum effect. As a savvy business owner I will research that relationship until I'm satisfied. if an advertising platform wishes for me to "spend a lot more" they need only give me compelling evidence that my spend will be efficacious. Simon Outdoor fails. Daktronics wins. It's just numbers.

I recognize you're talking about targeted advertising and I'm revealing that my means-tested, tracked, and researched most-efficient ad buy is "fuckin' 4'x10' LED sign on a street corner." I think that's telling. We presume that because something is super-invasive it must be super-effective and it's simply not so. I made the point to the guy who literally runs the Internet for Warner Brothers that with all the cookies and stuff Warner has in my browser it's kind of astounding that they give me the exact same ad three times over six times an hour. He responded that while the cookies and such are clearly and obviously available, the advertisers aren't interested because when you're trying to move product, microtargeting is utterly ineffective. He didn't say it was offensive; wasn't his wheelhouse.

And look. I think we're spending $100/mo on adwords right now. We're also organically the second or third search result for any term that matters to me within the isochrones I care about. That's in a market where my nearest competition literally owns "birthcenter.com" (they're two or three links below us). As far as sponsored ads? We're number two of two because any term we care to spend money on we're automatically outbid by a major hospital conglomerate.

Which, really, goes to show how ineffective online advertising is. We're basically pissing away that $100. Our business comes from being in the directories patients expect to look at, and in making the community aware of us through outdoor signage.

Which, once more, is probably why these discussions are so contentious. There's no there there. Nielsen ratings exist because the advertising industry demanded it of broadcasters; online advertising exists because it isn't tracked by Nielsen. As soon as there are auditable metrics for online advertising of any kind the whole thing will collapse.

kleinbl00  ·  852 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: 'We just can’t feed this many'  ·  x 2

I was going to lay down that pithy Claire Wolfe quote from 30 years ago but you know what? I'll play.

Revolutions have the unfortunate tendency to replace one repressive regime with another. Russia exchanged monarchs for kleptocrats; Iran replaced an autocratic monarch with an autocratic priest; Egypt replaced one autocratic general with another. Fortunately revolutions tend to hit concentrated power much harder than diffuse power. It's easy to overthrow a general. It's a pain in the ass to overthrow a House of Commons.

Before you can overthrow a democracy you have to replace it with an autocracy. You are free to argue the Republican Party in general and the Trump administration in particular are hell-bent on this goal and I will not argue with you. Where we can dicker is how successful they're being.

Obamacare survives because McCain threw a thumbs-down into the middle of the works. That's the power of one man in our structure of government - what took a dozen years of orchestrated attack was unwound by one man who suddenly grew a conscience. I think we can both agree that there are many people within the Trump administration who are doing everything they can to unwind what we've got - Steve Bannon and Stephen Miller come immediately to mind - but ours is a structure where, broad strokes, it's every bit as hard to tear down as it is to build up.

And ours is not a centralized society. Everyone in America has gotten used to turning locally; local newscasts are experiencing a renaissance the likes of which they've never had and the argument for States' Rights has never been clearer. What I remember most clearly about the run-up to the Iraq War was the tireless efforts by the White House to shape popular opinion through manipulation of the popular press. The end result was the phrase "MSM" whereby suddenly, the default view became "if you're seeing it on NBC it's probably a lie." This is the void Putin & Co rushed into and it got them an election, just like the void got Bush and Cheney a war. But it's one of those things you can pull once.

The rantings of Fox News aren't crazy enough for who's left so we've got to huddle around weird websites for QAnon news. The President panders and pumps OAN, whose ratings are known only to OAN (which substantially impacts their advertising rates, which indicates their ratings aren't even worth discussing). There is not a major news source on the air that hasn't outlined the outright lies and mistruths promoted by the White House and no one is even pretending this stuff is normal anymore. We're progressing through the process started in 2003 when the world was forced to learn how to vet news sources and honestly, REALITY WILL WIN. It's just easier. Journalists are generally a lazy bunch and constructing a narrative out of things that happened is overwhelmingly easier than constructing a narrative out of things that didn't, particularly when anyone with a phone can query additional sources.

Politically speaking we've had a splinter faction hell-bent on tearing us apart who now have to deal with the reality that success means pulling together. Every minimum-wage slacker you've ever excoriated is now standing in front of you selling you Cheetos while you retreat to your compound. And both sides of that exchange know it. We have an entire ideology that has steadfastly rejected expertise who are now clinging to any expert they can find. And we have states shipping supplies to one another in defiance of the federal government because we're all fucking pulling together.

And what has this done to society? What has this done to work? What has this done to education? Colleges are fucked but they'd been on the ragged edge of moving online anyway. Vast swaths of the service sector are suddenly unemployed. And we're all learning that there are a whole bunch of jobs that you can do a half-assed job at without ever needing to be in the office.

Would you take a 50% paycut if you never had to come to the office? 'cuz if that means you can move from a place where rent is $1000 a month to a place where rent is $300 a month... you start sharpening your pencil. ButterflyEffect and I were chatting about a marvelous cabin he's found for $172k up the fuck and gone some place where he could never commute to work... but considering it's less than a third what properties cost where he's forced to live, "telecommute from a cabin in the woods" becomes a lot more practical for everyone.

And suddenly your deep red hinterlands are full of Bernie-voting rose-wearing DSA fuckers drinking your redneck beer, buying your redneck groceries and engaging you in fucking conversation about the school levy.

Here's what I think: I think way too many of the Republican right-wing small-government ideologues have been on tape way too many times saying exactly the wrong thing over and over and over. People have sand in their panties right now about the absence of Joe Biden without observing that right now, the race is between Trump and "not Trump" and the constructive thing is to let Trump keep going on TV during prime time and appear keenly non-presidential. 77% of respondents polled want vote-by-mail. That's an eaaaaasy state initiative. Will it happen this time? I dunno. What I do know is that we're in the middle of a census right about the time everyone's being forced to stay home and it doesn't ask about immigration status but it does give you ten different choices of hispanic.

I don't know if you could craft a better repudiation of 'boomer, conservative thought than COVID-19. I'm not thankful we're going through it, but I'm not pessimistic about what happens after. Amazon got zero subsidies for building in NYC and they did anyway and that's because at the local level, Amazon got the middle finger.

I don't think we serve up rare cuts of oligarch. I think the smart money recognizes that the prudent move is to take a lower profile and I think that the rest of the country recognizes that the way we used to do stuff is inferior to most of the choices we're about to make.

kleinbl00  ·  854 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Bernie Sanders drops out of 2020 race   ·  

Who fucking cares? She's a democratic ex-fighter pilot running against Mitch McConnell.

Maybe dial the purity test back a bit.

kleinbl00  ·  867 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Hubski Craft Fair v4.0 - March 25, 2020  ·  

Here's the elastics shelf at JoAnn. JoAnn Fabrics is an essential business according to the State of WA so it's open under shelter-in-place. This is what it looked like last week.

I asked the green-haired guy cutting my cloth where the elastic was and he said "the aisle behind me, although I don't think you'll find anything!" So I went back. It wasn't far enough away from him not to hear him turn to his coworker and say "I'm so sick of people asking 'where's the elastic? Where's the elastic? How do I make a mask? How do I make a mask? Waah!'" So when I came back to get more fabric cut I told him "Look - I get that you're stressed and all? But I've got a clinic with seven employees that's been compelled to stay open through this thing and the only protective equipment we're going to see from now until the end of it is what's in this basket so I get it? But maybe keep it to yourself."

Cooking everything under UV for half an hour, then flipping, then cooking some more. The big box is my daughter's "beat on a block of plaster with a hammer and chisel to find rocks" toy; she bought it with her own money.

That's a MERV13 furnace filter. There were three left at Home Depot. I bought two. They contain two layers of synthetic felt with a layer of aluminum mesh in between. It's sharp as a mutherfucker.

If you savage the shit out of an MERV13 furnace filter you will find yourself bleeding from fingers and arms. You will also find yourself with approximately six yards of synthetic felt that's eminently breathable. Pictured here is one half of a savaged furnace filter. The wad in the corner is one half of a savaged furnace filter's accoutrement of razor wire.

Mask insert pattern. Masks by my wife, who sews about as well as I mix music. Therefore there's no point in doing any of the sewing.

Half a furnace filter yields approximately 70 mask inserts, which must be doubled up in order to equal the equivalent of about n65. N95 it ain't but "better than straight cloth" it is. It looks like I have the ability to produce about 120 masks if need be. Which is good because the nearest L&D department has closed its doors and the other nearest L&D is actively discouraging maternity patients from having babies in the hospital. Meanwhile CDC guidelines recommend separating newborns from COVID-19 mothers for two weeks, which as anyone who has ever studied early childhood development can tell you is a developmental nightmare of epic proportions so to no one's suprise it's going over like a lead balloon with the pregnant moms' contingent (and every other health organization who are actively asking the CDC 'WTF is wrong with you').

Fuckin' sunshine and rainbows over here in Seattle.

kleinbl00  ·  885 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Help. Please help me understand the panic  ·  

I'm your huckleberry.

Here's the way to look at it: COVID-19 is "the flu" if "the flu" were more contagious, could not be inoculated against and killed more old people. We've had the flu vaccine since 1938. Yeah, the flu shot has been optional but it's been around. You can get it at CVS. It probably costs $25 with no insurance, between $10 and $0 with.

"More contagious" "could not be inoculated against" and "killed more old people" are three statements that go right over your head. "more contagious" means "you're more likely to get it" but you've survived flu every goddamn time so what's the big deal. "could not be inoculated against" means "you're more likely to get it" but again, you've survived the flu every goddamn time. "Killed more old people" you immediately go to "but old people die" and then right on to "old people die of the flu" without pausing to consider public health considerations.

It's the public health considerations that you need to focus on.

So we deliver babies. Every hospital we talk to has a protocol for dealing with coronavirus. They all include things like "you get two companions period, no in and out privileges" which means whereas it used to be you, your wife, your doula, your mom, six cousins and your wife's best friend at the hospital, it's now you, your wife and your doula period. Okay, we can do that.

A couple of them include phrasing like "maternity patients showing symptoms of coronavirus will be isolated in a negative pressure room." Okay, makes sense.

But how many negative pressure rooms does your hospital have? And are they anywhere near the maternity ward?

    In total, 31 firefighters and 3 police officers would ultimately be quarantined or isolated. As of this writing, 18 are showing symptoms.

Kirkland is down 31 firefighters from one outbreak. Best guess? That's maybe two out of five fire stations. One uncontained outbreak has taken out 40% of Kirkland's emergency response capacity.

And that's with everyone around here freaking balls, by the way. We're cancelling schools, avoiding work. Highways be empty, dawg. Let's say that we're containing it appropriately and knocking that R0 of 2.4(?) down to an R0 of 1.4(?). Our 31 firefighters are going to be 45 people in about another 3 days. Next week it's gonna be 60. Assuming everyone is self-isolating and washing their hands.

Suppose one of those firefighters has a friend who works at Domino's and they shook hands.

    “Hey, you guys are supposed to be in self-quarantine,” the firefighter said.

    “No, we’re not,” the nurse replied.

    “Well, our chain of command talked to your management, and they say something different.”

    The nurse insisted; she hadn’t heard anything, she said.

    The firefighter looked down the hall and saw two caregivers in scrubs -- no mask or gown.

    “What the hell?” the firefighter thought. “Who is not telling you that you have two suspected coronavirus cases?”

So okay. You're young and spry and you've fought the flu. I'm young and spry and I've fought the flu. I'm either fighting the flu or coronavirus and I hope to fuck it's coronavirus because then at least I'll have it out of the way. But I've been able to sum up the energy for light soldering and occasional shopping for about ten days now. I haven't been hit this bad by flu in maybe six years - back when I didn't do flu shots 'cuz I was lazy. My contribution to the economy since late February has been netflix and chill.

But between you, your wife and your wife's best friend? Statistically, one of you is losing a parent to this. And you're losing them to pneumonia, and you're losing them to respiratory collapse, and if your parents are lucky, they're going to the hospital but if they're not, the American Hospital Association is estimating about 1.9 million people are going to the ICU over this

And there are about 60,000 ventilators in the United States.

No, they ain't all going at once. But this is an exponential situation.

Fundamentally? More people are going to get sick, and they're going to get more sick than usual, and our healthcare system does not have the capacity for it. Which means we're going to be experiencing a more severe flu season with less medical care. And that is generally bad for the vulnerable.

Does that make sense?

    Cartographers are “quite meticulous, really high-precision people,” he says. Their entire professional life is spent at the magnification level of a postage stamp. To sustain this kind of concentration, Hurni suspects that they eventually “look for something to break out of their daily routine.” The satisfaction of these illustrations comes from their transgressive nature— the labor and secrecy required to conceal one of these visual puns.

So this is Seminar II. I designed the AV systems for it in 2002-2005. There were over fifty sheets. Evergreen asked for "fiber optics" for their AV plant and we said "single mode or multi-mode? What are you doing with it?" and they responded "we don't know give us both." This is the equivalent of saying "we don't know if we need a freight train or a dump truck, bill us for both."

Seminar II has, in a few places, a green roof. It used to have an entirely green roof and then budget cuts happened. One of the running jokes at the meetings was how the green roof was going to be kept tidy; this was before everyone knew that green roofs were basically "sedums eight ways" but once you've worked on a green roof project you know this. My boss, who was a loathsome man, suggested a goat. Everyone laughed. The goat became a running in-joke of meetings. My boss, who was a loathsome man, did not know it was a joke.

Project design goes through a few stages - "SD" (systems development), "DD" (design development) and "CD" (construction development). Typically you get one or two sets for SD, then a 50% DD, a 75%DD and a 100%DD, then you might get a 50%CD, a 75%CD, a 90%CD, a 100%CD and a bid set. For those counting at home, that means I had to draw fifty sheets nine times. Except at 90%CD Evergreen asked why their roof, with their marvelous gardens, didn't have any guard rails to keep the fine children of Olympia from plummeting five floors to their deaths. The architect said that guard rails weren't aesthetic. The school said that guard rails were a requirement of the Uniform Building Code. My boss, who is still by all accounts a loathsome man, asked about the goat. Everyone looked at him and said nothing. The architect argued that no part of their contract required them to adhere to the Uniform Building Code and Evergreen, being Evergreen, agreed to pay them to redesign the whole thing with guard rails. We, as subcontractors, saw none of that money. So we went to 90%CD and then went back to 50, 75, 85, 90, 95, 100, 100 again and then bid. For free.

I was not in the initial meetings. I was given "the goat" as gospel truth. I had a few conversations with my once loathsome, always loathsome boss about the goat - he wasn't sure where the goat was staying, how the goat would be brought up there, penned etc. At one point I was on a phone call with someone at the architecture firm and said "there's no goat, right?" to which I got laughter.

So at 75%CD (the first time), I added a goat to the roof.

Something you should know about architectural drawings. They use XREFs - "eXternal REFerences" - which are generally the things drawn by the architect. You put them in as a non-editable layer and draw your stuff on top. Architectural CAD requires decent file hygiene or else you're fukt. And, of course, part of development is importing the XREFs from the architect each time, looking to see what's changed, and making sure all of your design still fits. You then upload everything to a folder and everyone can pull down your shit and make sure it works. I was dependent on Electrical, for example, to make sure that I had power everywhere I needed it and Electrical was dependent on me to make sure they captured my conduit etc. So my routine became 1) Get Xrefs 2) Crack them down so they were compliant with the layers we were using 3) bring them into my drawings 4) update my drawings 5) painstakingly go back and add the goat to this one sheet using the same layers as the green roof. That way the goat was screened back and subtle and I didn't need to worry about it. Also, the goat never showed up as an AV object that needed addressing.

So. Sixteen sets of drawings, eleven of which had a goat in them. Nobody noticed.

Until the bid documents went out.

There were four AV contractors bidding on our stuff, two who were incompetent, one who was an asshole and one that didn't do stuff this big generally. The little guy called me up about two days after it went out to bid to say "tell me about the goat" and I had to say "we'll talk about that in person when my loathsome boss isn't in the next office over." I called him later and relayed the story - we laughed - and I mentioned that I hope he got the bid considering he was the only person in three years of design that had ever noticed the goat.

"Oh, it's yours?" he said.

"Uhh... yeah?" I said.

"That's weird," he said "because it's on the electrical sheets, the mechanical sheets, the lighting sheets, the fire protection sheets..."

Near as I can tell, everyone else had gotten so lazy about dealing with the architect's Xrefs that they had gotten in the habit of just stealing mine off the server. After all, mine were already cracked down. Probably saved them three days of work. And when the architect often doesn't give you what you need, you find shortcuts.

So. Although I drew one (1) goat to be on one (1) sheet out of 700, the goat ended up in the bid documents at least two dozen times.

And nobody noticed but my AV contractor, who got the job by the way. Fifteen years later they're the only ones still in business.

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