HPMOR chapter 87

Wednesday, September 20th, 2017 11:44 pm
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Today's outburst of reading laughter was brought to me by this passage:

"That is not okay! You can’t do science with two people at once!"
"Er—"
"I mean, you can’t do science with two different people and not tell them about each other!"

http://www.hpmor.com/

(which of course won't make much sense unless you've read the 86 chapters before that part.)

And then I reflected that I could relate a lot more to that statement taken literally, than to that for which it might be interpreted as a metaphor.

dream quote

Saturday, September 16th, 2017 12:49 am
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I wrote down the following, after waking from a dream. It was something I had been thinking (or maybe telling someone) in the dream. I remember that at the time, after waking up, it only made half-sense, though in the dream it had seemed very significant and true, in a sad way. Now it makes even less sense.

"I feel like I'm living life from the outside in." (like I don't really have a life of my own.. just ~pretending/reacting...

blood tests

Saturday, September 16th, 2017 12:34 am
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So which is true?

How To Order Your Own Blood Tests : You do not need a doctor to order blood tests for you. Several Internet companies offer routine blood tests that you can order yourself.

Genova Diagnostics : Only healthcare providers licensed in their state may order laboratory testing.

Quest Diagnostics : Because of regulations in every state except Arizona, patients must have their doctor request lab tests. To get tested, you’ll need to contact your doctor and find out your options for getting a lab order through him or her.

LifeExtension.com : Life Extension/National Diagnostics, Inc. contracts with physicians who will order your tests, but will not diagnose or treat you. It is highly recommended that you show your physician or healthcare professional your blood test results.

I suppose that last one explains it. But how can I know if the results I would get from ordering a test myself from those online companies would be as reliable as the results if I had a doctor to order it for me?

Odd Squad

Tuesday, September 12th, 2017 09:36 pm
darkoshi: (Default)
This PBS kid's show is entertaining and quite funny in some parts: Odd Squad

That website is good too; you can watch the episodes there, and it has other special features. Awww man, it even has a downloadable 2017 puppy calendar.

Dinosaurs?!

Monday, September 11th, 2017 11:41 pm
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After Hurricane Harvey, I saw this funny video on Facebook of a dinosaur crossing a street:
https://www.facebook.com/smanby/videos/vb.756584058/10155822480429059/?type=2&theater

Today on the news, they showed a clip of what looked like the same dinosaur sweeping the street in Beaufort, SC after Irma passed through!

So I did some searches, and found all the following. What is going on with all the dinosaurs? Did I miss something?? Are people dressing up as dinosaurs this year, instead of clowns?

http://www.islandpacket.com/sports/golf/rbc-heritage-tournament/article144830739.html (2017/04/15)

http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/2017/04/17/mom-wears-dinosaur-costume/ (2017/04/17)

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/nicole-wells-dinosaur-costume-scares-horses-palmetto-carriage-works/ (2017/05/19)

http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/348646-protesters-wear-dinosaur-costumes-outside-the-white-house (2017/08/30)

https://www.yahoo.com/style/awesome-mom-wears-dinosaur-costume-send-daughter-off-kindergarten-203840661.html (2017/09/08)
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Apparently shelf-stable / tetrapak-style cartons are now recyclable here too.

https://www.recyclecartons.com/center-info/?location=42005

http://columbiasc.net/solid-waste/recycling/waste-wizard

And now even greasy pizza boxes are ok, too! "Greasy boxes are ok. Please no food waste."

And apparently plastic bottle caps should be discarded in the trash. That's what I originally thought, but later on I read conflicting info which made me think it was ok as long as they were screwed onto the bottle.
But ok, I need to remember: no bottle caps, no more.

But... what about wide-mouthed plastic jars with the big plastic caps? I can't find that mentioned in the above waste wizard. Are plastic jars considered plastic bottles? And are plastic jar caps considered the same as plastic bottle caps? Surely not.

For some reason, the Richland County Solid Waste and Recycling page is giving a 404 error at present:
http://www.rcgov.us/Government/Departments/SolidWasteRecycling.aspx

I wish it was working so I could check if all the above is really true for Richland County's recycling program too, and not only the city's.

snap buttons

Saturday, September 9th, 2017 02:04 pm
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If your snap buttons on an item of clothing open too easily, you may be able to make them tighter by using a small screwdriver, or better yet, something with a sharp metal point, to bend some of the tines slightly inwards. The tines make up a circle of metal, into which the side of the button with the protrusion is pushed into.

There are different kinds of snap buttons.

Based on the ones listed on the above web page, the kind I'm referring to above is the "prong" type, which has a circle of metal tines. This kind is generally small and found on shirts.

There's another kind of snap button, the "S spring" type, where the protrusion side of the button is pushed into a hole which has 2 parallel wires on the sides to provide the tension (both of which are a single piece of thin wire, bent and positioned inside of the hole).

Pants and jackets generally have larger snap buttons of the "Ring spring" type, which use a single piece of thick wire shaped into a circle, to provide the tension. The circle of wire expands slightly outward against the containing round frame of the button, when the other side of the button is pushed in. That kind of button doesn't usually have a problem with becoming looser over time.

dream

Thursday, September 7th, 2017 08:22 am
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I woke up, sitting in my chair at work with my head leaning back. I had fallen asleep at work! It was now the middle of the night... when I saw a clock, it showed 4am.

I got up and started walking, to wake myself up. I walked into the next building where I don't normally go, and promptly got lost. I was surprised that there were still a lot of other people around, still working at that hour.

I saw sunlight starting to brighten the curtains on the east side of the building, and walked over there to look at the sunrise. When I looked out the window, I saw the ocean and a beach down below! I exclaimed something in surprise, and another guy nearby said something like yeah, the company put that there for employees. I said I had never seen it before, and looked back outside again. It looked like the real ocean, with waves, but it only extended out for a short distance and ended.

I found my way back to my cube and was preparing to leave, when I heard/saw another co-worker just leaving, locking the door behind them. I worried for a moment that he was locking me in, but then I remembered that I had a key - hopefully it worked from the inside too, to unlock the door.
darkoshi: (Default)
It shouldn't take me two hours to decide how to reply to someone who sends me a short but pleasant friends request on a social media site that I really don't use anymore, and which I never really used much. But from which I don't want to remove my account, because memories and past friendships and familiar names.



... life is just a giddy-up, a go-go..

I have a version of this 1983 song from an Italian Dance hits CD. My MP3 player played it a few days ago, and the refrain keeps popping up in my head (an earworm, but not a bad one).



Video title: Ad Visser & Daniel Sahuleka - Giddyap A Gogo
Posted by: ronderw
URL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YyQsyzHE-sA
darkoshi: (Default)
Rhiannon Giddens - Wayfaring Stranger


The above song sounds VERY familiar to me. It triggered a memory of a different voice singing it, in a slightly different way. But the song title is not present in my music collection, unless I taped it from the radio on one of my as yet uncatalogued audio cassettes.

I checked a list of other artists who have covered the song, and when I saw Dolly Parton's name, I thought "oh YES, that's the voice I was thinking of." But the only solo song I have by Dolly Parton is this one:
Dolly Parton - Little Sparrow


Both of those songs sound very similar to me. So that must be the song I was remembering.

Dolly Parton has sung Wayfaring Stranger, too. The beginning of it has the same sound as the above two, but once past 30 seconds in, it sounds very different. So this is NOT the song I was remembering.
Dolly Parton - Wayfaring Stranger


Audra May has sung a cover of Little Sparrow, which is also very good:
Audra Mae - Little Sparrow
darkoshi: (Default)


I changed my browser homepage (which is a self-coded HTML file) to have this background color: #ff0080. I'd describe it as fluorescent reddish pink. It's so beautiful, especially with my links in contrasting yellow, and a browser theme in a complementary color. Having nearly the whole screen be that color has much more of a visual impact, compared to this small paragraph.




.

I discovered that it is much easier to pull out small tree saplings using a pair of pliers, rather than only my gloved hands. But my hands got the same achy, because instead of pulling out all the easy ones like last time, I was pulling out harder ones.

With bigger pliers, maybe I could even pull out some of the ones with bigger trunks/roots... say up to nickel-sized? Maybe there's even a special tool for that.

I spend so much of my free time doing yard work, and it feels very pointless. Other than the work it requires, it's nice to have a yard and trees and flowers, etc. But if I didn't have dogs, I'd seriously reconsider living in a place where I have to take care of a yard.

.

Little Secrets : dark chocolate candies with a sugar-shell coating. Yummy like M&M's, which I haven't had since becoming vegan. I hadn't remembered how nice it is to feel the crispy crunch of a thin sugar shell between my teeth. The packaging doesn't mention it, but the sea salted peanut, classic dark, and raspberry flavors seem to be vegan based on the ingredients. Some of the others include milk. Ahh.. their FAQ says they don't label them as vegan because the sugar was produced with a non-vegan refining process (ie., bone char filtered).

.
darkoshi: (Default)
I'll have to try this:

How to stop stumps from growing back, organically! - drill holes in the stump and apply epsom salts, and replenish the salt every week or so.

Another idea - after doing the above, cover the stumps with black plastic / garbage bag and weight it down with bricks, to both block sunlight, and to keep the salts from being washed away by rain.

How To Use Epsom Salt For Stump Removal - this page says to put a little bit of water in the holes with the epsom salt.

How to Mix Epsom Salts to Kill Stumps - this page says to use a one-inch extra long drill bit... Oh, that must be a spade bit.

quarters

Sunday, August 27th, 2017 11:19 pm
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I noticed that one of my quarters has an image of Frederick Douglass on the back. It's a 2017 quarter, and I hadn't seen this design before. It used to be news when new currency designs came out; now it seems to happen without any fanfare at all. (Although, as I'm not able to keep up with the news, maybe it's just me.)

Curiously, the Frederick Douglass design isn't part of a series of important American people, but rather "America the Beautiful" - national parks and sites. This series has been going on since 2010, with 5 new designs each year. I have seen some of the others, but hadn't realized there were so many different designs.
darkoshi: (Default)
I know it's not true, but it seems like *everybody* got to see totality except me (and of course my mom and Qiao, who were with me.)

I know I'm lucky to have been able to experience as much of it as I did experience. To not have even had to travel anywhere to experience it. There are surely people who traveled far from home to see it, and had clouds get in the way; that would have been even worse bad luck. And I'm sure there were many people who were in the path, but were unable to watch it for other reasons.

What with the weather forecasts, it's not like I was really *expecting* to be able to see it. I knew it was a long-shot. It seemed, though, that even if I were to drive somewhere else with a better forecast, it would be just as much a matter of luck, along with the risk of being stuck in traffic during the actual event.

But that break in the clouds here as it was getting closer to totality really made it seem like we were going to get to see it after all... and then... that big dark cloud, sob.

I'm glad that on Monday evening, there was one announcer on TV, who when the others were talking about it, said "well actually I didn't get to see it; in my area it was raining". It made me feel less alone in my bad luck. He's one of only two people I've heard on TV who were in the path of totality, who said they didn't get to see it due to clouds or rain.

I wonder, if I had seen it, if it would have seemed really special, or just a neat glowing disk in the sky. I suspect that latter, because nothing feels really special to me. So it's not like I probably even missed a great experience.

Oh, man. There's a pretty good video of it on this page. But apparently, totality was even visible in Charleston and on the coast, though the weather map had been showing the worst cloud cover there. ::sob, I'm cursed::

... oh, wait. Here's some other people who had clouds. See there, self, you're not the only one with disappointment.

..

I saw the crescent moon this evening, around 9pm. Sunset was around 8pm.

Eclipse Day

Monday, August 21st, 2017 10:24 pm
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It was partly cloudy here today.

I got to see a lot of the partial eclipse. A few minutes before totality, a big cloud moved in front of the sun, so I didn't get to watch that most special part. But I did get to experience the sky darkening (not nearly as dark as in the middle of the night; more like shortly after sunset), and the temperature dropping, and the wind whipping up, and a few cicadas starting to buzz, and part of the horizon looking pink.

It was very similar to a big thunderstorm building up. That's what the dogs seemed to think, anyway, as they rushed for the porch and pawed at the front door to be let inside. I let them in and then us humans remained outside to watch.

One curious thing is that the partial eclipse started with the moon entering the upper right portion of the sun, and ended with the moon leaving the upper left portion of the sun (when viewing generally southwards for both). That's not what I had expected. Maybe I'm mistaken about what direction I was looking when it started.

Many people here in town did get to see the totality; it just depended on where one was, and where the clouds were. But in some areas, it even rained.

My neighbor was visiting a relative at the hospital this afternoon, and she told me that a lot of the hospital staff went outside to view the eclipse (but staff who were needed inside stayed in). She said that the Emergency Room remained open, but the normal operating rooms were closed for that time period. That answers one of the things I had wondered about.

Click to enlarge...


darkoshi: (Default)
This was a very interesting read. Several of the things mentioned in the article made me think of my niece, who was born in 1995; things which I thought were simply traits of hers, but which may be more general traits of her generation.

Have Smartphones Destroyed a Generation?

amusing sentences

Sunday, August 20th, 2017 11:44 pm
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What a Border Collie Taught a Linguist About Language
Despite their name, sheep are not sheepish and often act on their own closely held ideas about where to go.

Authorities are Treating August's Solar Eclipse, a First in 99 Years, Like it's the End of the World
National Construction Rentals, which rents portable toilets across the U.S., hasn’t seen a spike in demand, but “there most likely will be last-minute requests as the date approaches,” says the company’s sales and marketing director, Scott Barley. “We advise customers not to spend too much time in our portable toilets on the actual date of August 21, or they may miss this very brief but memorable event.”
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Follow-up to this post.

In the prior post, I pondered about angles. In particular, about the ~13 degrees per day that the moon orbits around the earth, and whether that angle would still look like 13 degrees to me, when measured from the surface of the earth.

The angle would *not* be exactly the same. However, because of how far away the moon is compared to the size of the earth, the difference in angle is very small. That difference can be calculated using trigonometry.

Here's a new diagram. All figures mentioned below are approximations or averages.



The angle measured from the center of the earth is 13 degrees.
"X" is the corresponding angle measured from the surface, which will be calculated.
"D" is the distance from the center of the earth to the moon: 384400 km
"R" is the radius of the earth : 6371 km

I've drawn 2 right triangles such that both have the same "opposite" side, with length "O".
The length of the adjacent side for the X-angled triangle is "A".
The length of the hypotenuse for the X-angled triangle is "B".
The length of the adjacent side for the 13-degree-angled triangle is A + R.
The length of the hypotenuse for the 13-degree angled triangle is D.

sin 13 degrees = O / D
O = D * sin 13 = 384400km * 0.2249511 = 86471 km

cos 13 degrees = (A + R) / D
A = (cos 13) * D - R = (0.9743701 * 384400) - 6371 = 368176.85

tan X = O / A
X = arctan(O / A) = arctan (86471 / 368176.85) = 13.217

So, the corresponding angle from the surface of the earth is ~13.2 degrees.
darkoshi: (Default)
When I have something to add in regards to a post I've made previously (a few hours ago, or a few days, or even months), I'm not sure what's the best approach.

Often I simply update the old post, adding an "Update" section to it. That way if anyone finds the post from a websearch, they'll have all the details right there.

Sometimes I create a new post, and put my update there. That way, anyone on my list who read my original post will get the update on their reading page. I don't usually bother to update the old post to link to the new one... so unfortunately, anyone who finds the original post via a search won't get the whole story.

If the post was either very recent (such that maybe no one else read it yet), or a long time ago, I'm more likely to simply update the original post. If it was in-between but had no comments, I'm also likely to take this approach, as I suppose that none of my readers are very interested in the topic and wouldn't be interested in the update anyway.

If the post had comments/discussion, I may choose either option, but if I update the old post, I am more likely to at least mention and link to the update in a new post.

I've been making a lot of updates to recent posts lately.

What approach do the rest of you take?

photos

Saturday, August 19th, 2017 03:53 am
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Three vultures and a crow in a dead tree. The crow seemed to be cawing at the vultures.


Impressive power lines.


I call this the "yellow brick road". Yellow flowers grow in this gravel path, and only in the path, not in the surrounding fields of grass.