Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Term limits

I don't like the sound of Bloomberg running again. They have term limits for Mayor of New York. They need to keep it that way.

"Trying times" is not when we should repeal these sort of term limit laws. From past performance, it looks like he would be a good person for the job. But it should be someone else's turn. Even Putin stepped down (well, changed title at least!).

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Stone Mountain Lake

I went fishing today. It was short because my ride wasn't feeling well and we had a slow start to the day. No fish were biting, I think fish skip lunchtime...

bad camera, just had the cell phone cam. I zoomed in so you can kind of make me out, the second one you can see the rod.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Oil Change and Gear Oil Change

The scooter was due for its first oil and gear oil change with the mileage at 191.4. I really didn't know what engine oil to use, because I got 3 different answers from 3 different sources, 2 were the manual itself (15w-40,10w-30,5w-50). I decided on 5W-30 and used that.

The engine oil was fairly uneventful, the oil was pretty dirty though. I found small shavings in the oil drain plug. The plug is spring-loaded, so it was hard to get started when it was covered in oil. There is a small screen that I also cleaned.

The gear oil drainage bolt was really hard to get off. A sticker on the gear box said to use GL-3 oil. Online, I found that I was supposed to use 85w-140. I had bought GL-5 85w-140 gear oil at walmart. A quick check online later, I found that I might be able to use the GL-5 its supposed to be for heavier duty applications and also can dissolve bronze gears?! so I am taking a small risk. Hopefully my transmission does not corrode itself?

I have to take the oil to a waste oil place, I don't really know where I am supposed to take it. I am going to stop in on an oil change place and ask them.

Old oil = teh dirty. New oil = nice.

I'll tell you how it rides and take pictures next time I change the oil.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Sink malfunction

I was about to go and brush my teeth one morning, and ran into a slight problem.

You never really can get rid of all of the vermin* in a house. Some things clog your drain and can only come out the way they came in. I tried a small trickle of water.
No dice. Then a slight increase. **Worked!
To be sure, I increased the flow a bit more.

Definitely clear and ready for teeth brushing.

*no cats were harmed in this series of photos.
** I actually just encouraged him to leave the bowl without dumping water on him. I did get about 7 drops on him from the second picture.

Swiss Army Knife fixing

I recently bought new tweezers and a new scissors spring for my Swiss Army knife. The spring didn't really have the correct effect, but it was better than before. I finally stole some small files from my dad's toolbox, and BAM. problem fixed. My scissors now open after they close via the spring, and not via me.

The only thing left to do is find a straight pin, which has been missing from the knife for over 10 years...

Oh wait, I have a huge box of straight pins. Problem fixed.

Now the only concern (if it is a concern at all) is the ink level in the pen.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Flowers and Crappy cameras

We went to the Atlanta Botanical Gardens last weekend. I took a few pictures of flowers that I wanted to share. Mostly orchids, one sculpture, and a lily. A neat plant that I did not get a picture of was the Mosaic Plant.

Blood letting

I gave blood on Sep. 17th, in 7:44.

Then I had a good meal of steak + mashed potatoes + asparagus prepared by a good friend.

It is the first time that I have gotten a bruise, but its mostly gone by now. I shouldn't have joked about letting the lady put the needle in with her eyes closed, I think she took me seriously.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Second Fill up

I filled up the scooter for the second time since I bought it today.

based on my first calculation, it gets 100.478 mpg. I was driving fairly aggressively (or so I thought, it doesn't have much excess power...)

I'll take more data points to get a more accurate mpg for the vehicle.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Quote from Field Marshal Erich von Manstein

I was reading along in the new Air and Space Power Journal and found this gem in the replies to the editor section. (Incidentally the reader (Sui Feng) was reading the Chinese version of the journal and responding to an article about training leaders) He got it from Jim Donovan.

There are only four types of officer. First, there are the lazy, stupid ones. Leave them alone, they do no harm…Second, there are the hard-working, intelligent ones. They make excellent staff officers, ensuring that every detail is properly considered. Third, there are the hard-working, stupid ones. These people are a menace and must be fired at once. They create irrelevant work for everybody. Finally, there are the intelligent, lazy ones. They are suited for the highest office.

- General Erich Von Manstein (1887-1973) on the German Officer Corps

I would tend to agree with Von Manstein. The best of all are the intelligent lazy ones. Get rid of the hard working bozos that just create more work and processes to follow.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Hiking inside of the perimeter.

We went hiking on last Saturday to the East Palisades trail in the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area. Here is a terrain map, we parked at the end of Indian Trail NW.

We saw a blue heron, ducks, lizards, and a variety of other wildlife (including plants). We stopped along the trail and went out into the water and swam around. We had lunch on the rocks in the river. We brought Victor and he had a blast in the water.

I should have taken more pictures, but I only took one at an overlook. In the over exposed section, there are some tall buildings and a road, to remind you how close the city is. That is the only time we saw buildings, otherwise, you think that you are in north GA somewhere.

Laser TV

Laser Televisions Promise More Vibrant Images (its an update to a MDA article from fall 2006)

Where it Stands

Since then, Novalux announced a major joint development and license agreement with Seiko Epson Corporation that resulted in the use of NECSEL-based illumination devices in microdisplay-based lasers. It also secured $21.7 million in financing and joined forces with Unaxis Optics, a Switzerlandbased company, with further hopes of using NECSELs in projection displays. In addition, Novalux is pursuing several other deals with major television manufacturers.

Users should see Novalux’s lasers in the future, and not just in their televisions. Within the display market, they have potential for use in movie theater projectors, heads-up displays, and car dashboards. Novalux is also planning to market its lasers in cell phone picoprojectors — devices that will allow consumers to project large, sharp, radiant images directly onto walls and screens using portable, hand-held laser displays built into their cell phones.

So basically, don't settle for anything less than a laser TV. They should be arriving soon. The picoprojectors interest me, thats basically a carry-able big screen tv once they get it all figured out. You just need a wall.

Monday, September 08, 2008

Why I am so fat

I know you have probably seen this by now, but just documenting why I am so fat.

Intellectual work induces excessive calorie intake


Scooter Brake Saga

I need to do my first oil change soon on my scooter. The person I bought it from said to do it at 100 miles. The user manual says to do it at 300 km (186.4 ish miles). The user manual, dude at the shop, and sticker on the scooter all say to use different engine oil. I am going to do more research for which one I should really use.

In checking out where everything was and making sure that I could do the oil change, I decided to locate a few things and fix the one of the nagging problems that the scooter has (squeaky front brake due to me). I found the idle adjustment screw, I thought I heard it idling a bit lean, but that may be a good thing. In the winter I think I will have to change the idle setting.

I also found out where to stiffen up the rear brakes. Now the rear brakes work when you push it a small distance, instead of having to hold it down onto the handle.

My front brakes started squeaking after I tried to make them stop rubbing when the brakes were off. On Sunday, I pushed on the brake when the disk was not in the calipers. This moved the piston forward and I could not get it to go back. I had to bleed the brake fluid from the brake system and figure out how it all worked.

In the end, I bought new brake fluid and refilled the front brake reservoir, and got the air bubbles out of the lines (I think) (side note: this may be an excuse to get that brake vacuum pump that I have always wanted). One screw holding the brake fluid in was so tight that I bent my screwdriver and stripped the screw trying to get it out. I had to use my dremel to cut a slot into the screw and use a very large flat head screwdriver to get it out. To cut the slot properly, I had to cut a bit into the casing. blah.

off to the store to get a new screw...

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Traitor: The Movie

I watched Traitor last weekend. 

Pretty good movie, fairly accurate. I would reccomend it, makes you think, and you also believe in the characters. The characters have depth, you try and figure out what they would do in situtations outside of the script. You want to know what motivates them. 

One comment though. At one point, a terrorist dude says something about how America forgets that it was once a terrorist too (in reference to the Revolution). 

There is a big difference between the current terrorist mindset and the American revolutionaries.

The terrorists want to dismantle the governments created by the people and subjugate others. They want to convert everyone to their beliefs or kill them. 
The American revolutionaries wanted to create a place where they could self govern. They did not try and take over Britain and force it to be a democracy. They didn't want to take over the world. 

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Ate the fruit of my labor

The sugar snap pea was ready. 

So I ate it. I just pulled it off of the plant, took a bite of half and gave the other half to Sara.

Pretty tastey, I think I have 5 coming up. One is actually growing, I have one flower, and 3 flower buds. 

Next year, I will plant quite a bit more plants, probably like 6-8 in one pot, and a better support structure.