Wednesday, June 21, 2017

A fascinating bit of physics for our time...

Bury it, send it to space.. what's a planet to do with that pesky unwanted radioactive waste?  As a man of science myself, I have always wondered if there were methods to accelerate the decay and make the stuff rather benign.  Seems that maybe there is!

Do any of this blog's readers know if this has progressed beyond a theory?  I suppose it would take a decade or so of super-cooling to quantify the rates and publish work that is credible... that should be happening now.  Hmmmmm, IF it is the way to go, I suppose the patents on the process would be filed soon too... 

Thought I'd share this "cool" idea on the first day of summer!


Sunday, June 18, 2017

Happy Father's Day!

Here's wishing all a very pleasant day with family, and for many of us who have lost our father, the memories still live on. 

We had a wonderful day at Lake Superior visiting one of my favorite places - a small fishing village on the Northern tip of Wisconsin.  The small village of Bayfield really wakes up in July, so things are still pretty slow up there.  Always a nice place to visit!  Just across a short channel is Madelin Island, a very interesting place for artists.  A really nice place to camp too especially if you like to sea kayack.

Just watching the World go by on a sunny Father's Day 2017.

Hazel's first swim in Lake Superior!
Summer so far has been very rainy, but our garden looks great!  We're experimenting with some new heirloom tomatoes


Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Are you ready for 21 August?

Here's a very cool flyover video of the path of totality in the US.

If I end up in a spot where I can get some eclipse pics, I will post them.  But I have no plans to get to the path....  Google has a simulator that they partnered with Berkely to create... some may find that interesting too!  I sure wish we were in Charleston for this!


Alas, I will probably see only a partial eclipse in the afternoon...  

Image result for 21 august eclipse world map
A look at eclipse paths both past and future.  Interestingly, the day/night reality of a revolving planet truncate the eclipse paths as shown.


Monday, June 12, 2017

Congratulations Drexel Class of 2017!

JRO so proud of you!

Good luck to all of the new grads!

All my love JRO, NLO and SEO AML!

Friday, June 9, 2017

Which came first... fuel cells in the Apollo Spacecraft or fuel cells in a farm tractor?

Watch below to see the awesomeness of  Allis Chalmers  from 1958!

So cool!

Amazing ingenuity!  The control looks like  it came out of an electric streetcar...


Wednesday, June 7, 2017

A HODAG you say?

Ok, as promised... I must tell you of the HODAG.

When business is slow, and you're pretty inventive, you just might "invent" something to pick things up a bit.  Get some attention, make a few bucks and make it so everyone could have a good laugh.

Such is the storied history of the HODAG.  Pronounced in English; hoe - dag

So where do we start...
The classic point of beginning...
This picture has been hanging in bars and on post cards for almost a hundred years and is exemplary of early marketing brilliance before the Harvard B-School meant anything to anybody.  Take note HBS, you're no better than this pic!  IMHO...

So on to the history of the little monster named "Clover" in the pic above...

An inventive guy by the name of Eugene Shepard invented the creature in 1893 a year of great economic decline in the US.  This economic malaise lingered until WW-1 with excess capacity, uncertain markets and foundering business starts.

Economists I know, say the American Civil War was what started the ball rolling towards this correction... Meh, it was a period where finding a good job versus staying on the farm was a real roll of the dice...

Roll the hands of time forward 100 years...
So - foundering economy, great success at hyping the HODAG myth at state fairs.... meant Shepard could provide for his family = a myth is born!

I'm not sure as to how this correlates to Big Foot or Yeti... but that's a great paper for some student to write on anthropology of the modern age...

In my home town of Montreal, Wisconsin we have great trout lakes, lots of wooded acreage but reject the HODAG... alas we have the black bear and the porcupine. AND the Skunk... but I digress... I have met these woodland creatures in their environment as a hiker, berry picker, or passer-by but I must tell you they have no interest in you or I.  Those real creatures simply want to go their own way.

So I will close with my suggestions to Umbertide, Zweibrucken and Redmond...

Zweibrucken... I think a good alien abduction is in order.  Complete with scary details that chronicle the plucking of tree ID tags in front of the Rosarium - in a revelation that Big foot loves roses - so it picked a few here and snagged some tags too...

Umbertide your next.  I love Umbertide and would move there if I could ever figure out how... Listening!?  OK - you guys need a mythical monster that "lives" on Mt Acuto.  Trust me.  A local taking a hike runs into the "thing" WHAM!  Success! Tourists from all the EU converge to see the "thing"  ohh also offer night viewing in an observatory (I have the plans if you are interested!)  and did I say I love Umbertide?  Gubbio too! Both cities are amazing and for different reasons.

Redmond you have the best chance of identifying that crazy birdman that keeps on dive bombing the MircoSoft building... Shhhhh.  Pure cryptozoology gold.

All events should include out of focus photography and some oddly distorted sound clip. 

AML JRO, NLO and SEO All my love!

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

D-Day Remembered...

June 6th, 1944.  What a fearful day for so many.  My uncle Peter  jumped early in the morning with his stick - part of the 82nd Airborn. The AA (All American) PIR jumped straight into a hail of bullets right out of their C-53.  You said your prayers because you were pretty sure you were about to die.  Then you jumped.

I was fortunate enough to locate and talk to the trooper who jumped right behind him and was told what the flight over was like, what their jump zone was like, and the mayhem on the ground...

Sadly, the Second World War would entangle my father who volunteered to be an underwater demolition "frogman" working in the South Pacific, and all of my uncles. Every one of them.  They served in the Big Red 1, the 82nd Airborn, the 28th Infantry Division, and USN S&R, good grief... from the sleepy town of Montreal, Wisconsin.

What many of you might not know is how many of these brave men of the 82nd "Band of Brothers" actually prepped for this jump.  Peter had extra ammo, mortar rounds strapped to his trousers and a musette.  Many landed in flooded fields making escape tricky, given the weight and the chute.   His jump zone was missed, like everybody else's and he ended up jumping on Sainte-Mere-Eglise.  I have his Jump Book if anyone would like a copy.

My thanks to all of you who have served in the armed forces.  Let us hope we can somehow prevent such horrors from happening again.


Saturday, June 3, 2017

Summer is wonderful!

We're getting the canoe out, the grass is green, and the trees are leafed out... Trilliums have come and gone.  Summer is here and it is as beautiful as ever!
This post is just a meander of the past 4000 miles, a few airplanes and one rental car.  I think I'll bring the Nikon out on the river tomorrow, we'll see what's going on out there!

A hold over from the last trip... This is the Pegasus wood carving in the Tucson, AZ  airport

Trusty Abe, about to clobber some tourists in the parking lot.

Hazel, doing what Hazel does...

Ok, now this is something I don't think many of us see.  A yard full of steel weldments in the shape of winged dinosaurs, elephants and other stuff!

Another roadside oddity.  What tips this into oddity vs kitche is the shear size of the bear. I would say around 3 M high...

Whoa, what's this... this was the approach to the giant bear.

I'll close with this crazy roadside oddity.  I have to laugh as it's owner even sculpted the fence for dramatic effect. 

 A busy summer for me.  So many things going on.  I've even traded my motorcycle for a boat!  More about that in a late summer post!  I have  made some progress on the Studebaker, but it's a slow moving project.  I really want to get the power train done this summer, but I have been diverted into sheetmetal.  I do have test data that supports submerging rusted parts into a mixture of molasses and water 1:4... really works!  Update on that in July!

I hope all are well who visit my little blog.  Soon JRO will cross the first big milestone.  Go Tah go!  Proud of you, AML JRO.  NLO too, FORWARD!