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23/02/2011

House temperature analysis 2

After the first test of USB temperature monitors to look at house temperatures decided to look at what my furnace was doing and how it affected basement temperatures. More playing around with temperature monitors and DPlot. Full details at this link.

Posted by Boris Gimbarzevsky at 1:23.40
Edited on: 07/07/2011 20:27.14
Categories: Miscellaneous

30/07/2010

Carbon taxes - made in BC idiocy

Had to fuel up the jeep today and while fuming about the waste of time that is required to pay before pumping gasoline (an idiotic workplace regulation arbitrarily imposed by unelected unaccountable statist bureacrats) noticed that every liter of gasoline now has 4.54 cents of carbon taxes included. Of course this $0.0454 is multiplied by 1.12 for the Victoria statists to gouge yet more money from people. Then there is that same "carbon tax" imposed on natural gas which goes up yearly nicely coincident with global cooling which will enrich the Victoria kleptocrats even more and taxes on electricity to fund "sustainable" electricity generation projects. We didn't stop using windmills because the world ran out of wind; nothing shows the true agenda of the watermelons who dispoil the natural environment with massive noisy wind turbines that do quite a good job of slicing up large numbers of birds. These are the same moonbats who go after oil companies for a few dead birds on tar sands ponds whereas the carnage of windmills gets swept under the rug. I guess in the warped watermelon reality chopping birds into pieces is "sustainable" and "natural". And, BTW, wind power does a great job in destabilizing the electrical grid and the wind don't blow when it's really cold. I guess people freezing to death because of no "sustainable energy" is natural too. What I want is a nice clean nuclear reactor nearby as that waste heat is going to come in very handy as world temperatures continue to decline.

Given the revalations of climategate it is hard to believe that any politician in this country could truthfull say that AGW scam is scientifically based. What is real is the insatiable appetite for statists for money and, they are currently taking advantage of "the environment" in imposing tax after tax on things. I've botten totally fed up with this process and, if the Wild Rose Alliance wins the next Alberta provincial election, I'll be moving to Alberta.

Lying Gordon Campbell (head moonbat in BC) promised he wouldn't bring in the HST, but we know how much politicians promises are worth. Now I guess it's into the recall phase of the anti-HST campaign and as soon as I find out where to sign the petition to recall the local lieberal idiot MP's, I'll be supporting this move. I want to see the BC lieberal party utterly destroyed as they represent the worst possible mix of statism, watermelon ideology, crony capitalism and stupidity that one is going to find anywere except Ontario. BC politics seems to consist of governments of either the BC communist party or a party that just wants to keep the commies out of power. What we really need now in BC is a TEA party.

/rant

18/04/2010

Yardwork

I've been looking forward to nice weather for a while and had forgotten that one of the side effects of a rise in temperature is that plants begin to grow. This means that I now have to allocate time for mowing lawns, weeding and pondering what to plant in my garden this year. As seems to be the norm for all humans, in the winter I was looking forward to long warm sunny days and today, while weeding, I was looking fondly back at winter evenings where I had the time to do more programming and reading.

After seeing my patients in hospital I spent 4 hours mowing the front lawn and weeding its border and realized that this area constitutes only about 1/4 of my yard. When I talk to other doctors about how much time they spend on yard maintenance I usually get a blank look and the name of a company that they use to perform all of these tasks. I might end up going this route later in the summer but at this time of year I still enjoy doing something different.

The nice thing about spending time on yard maintenance is that it is about as different from medicine as one can get. Also, at the end of the day one can see the results of ones work and get the feeling of having really accomplished something. Furthermore, it is good exercise as I'm noticing twinges of pain in places I don't normally feel pain. I'm still at the stage where the novelty of doing this hasn't quite worn off. Given a choice between going to a gym to workout or performing the equivalent work gardening I'll take gardening anyday. This may be a holdover from youth when my father's opinion that working out on weights was a total waste of time and, when I was a teenager, before I could hit the weights in the basement I'd first have to chop half a cord of wood in the garage which my father viewed as usefull muscular work.

After living in an apartment in Vancouver for years it was really neat to finally have a yard and garden. Plant hacking is similar to programming if one looks at plants like machines that execute unique growth programs. I used to just let plants do their thing but after moving to Kamloops I finally decided to modify the growth of plants to see what happened. I obviously don't have the time to create stunning flower gardens as only retired people seem to be able to do this sort of thing, but I can try out various plants to see what they do over the next few months. The other thing that is interesting to observe are the various insects that appear during the course of the spring and summer and these vary from year to year. Leaf cutter bees were very prevalent a few years ago but don't seem to be around yet this year.

Posted by Boris Gimbarzevsky at 21:50.28
Categories: Miscellaneous

28/02/2010

Context sensitive acronyms

One of the things that email and newsnet has brought us is a plethora of acronyms that I've unconsciously started to use in my work-related writings. I sometimes get a rude surprise when I have people ask me WTF are you saying in this document? IMHO these people should spend more time online and decoding IIRC seems ovbious to me.

While writing something the other day I noticed that some of the new acronyms are context sensitive; for example "WTF". The meaning of "WTF are you doing?" is generally accepted to be "What TF are you doing?". However, the sentence "WTF did you hide the book?" expands to "Where TF did you hide the book?" and "WTF did you buy this POS" is "Why TF did you buy this POS". An of course there's "WTF are you?" which is "Who TF are you?"

WTF is an excellent example of a context sensitive acronym which, when the googlebots come by, will be the 5th use of this phrase on the internet (at least in Googlespace). WTF also shows up problems with machine translation as one needs to understand the meaning of the sentence in order to properly expand WTF. The phrase {w_word}TF is widely used in English where {w_word} is a member of the set: {who, what, where, when, why}. In order to decode WTF in context one needs to be familiar with the use of this phrase in English which is used to add some emphasis to {w_word}. Interestingly all 5 words in the set are involved with acquisition of information regarding an event/object/person. My knowledge of semantics is completely informal but it seems that "WTF" is a particularly versetile context sensitive acronym. Now I'll be searching for other context sensitive acronyms and hopefully this won't be as bad as my palindromic phase 30 years ago when I was reading everything backwards looking for palindromes.

Posted by Boris Gimbarzevsky at 11:21.35
Categories: Miscellaneous

19/02/2010

Olympic idiocy - Drapeau's baby comes to BC

I have been told that the winter olympics are taking place in Vancouver at this time. When I think that a little more than a year ago I used to live in the west end I'm just so glad that I left Vancouver before this idiocy started. I have no idea what's going on in the olympics as I don't watch TV news, I don't read newspapers and my daily news comes from high information content blogs such as wattsupwiththat, small dead animals and climateaudit. I have noticed that CSI has been nothing but reruns and was very annoyed when I got home from a long day at hospital/clinic that Numb3rs was also a rerun. Looking at the online TV guide indicates that huge amounts of bandwidth are given over to coverage of the performance of various brainless "drug-free" state-trained humanoid robots that perform certain specialized athletic tasks several milliseconds faster than unsuccessfull "drug free" state trained humanoid robots.

If someone wants to spend their life seeing how fast they can go down an ice covered hill without killing themselves, then they are perfectly free to do so but I don't see why my taxes should be wasted to support this. The olympics is the modern version of the Roman "bread and circuses" that governments use to distract the population from their incompetence. The olympics has nothing to do with sport, but rather the desire of those in power to impress other statists with their excesses. Once the Drapeau's baby effect on BC provincial finances is felt then hopefully moonbat Campbell and his fellow Lieberals will be booted from office and replaced by a more fiscally responsible party. If the BC communist party wins the next election, the Wildrose Alliance may be in power in Alberta and I'll be moving east.

The Vancouver olympics were the last straw when it came to deciding where I was going to live. Various megalomaniac politicians took what was once a perfectly good city and turned it into the hellhole that exists today. When I first came out to Vancouver 31 years ago I had a feeling of this is where I wanted to stay for the rest of my life. Vancouver in 1979 had a very liveable downtown core, lots of parks, Wreck beach and the UBC campus seemed like paradise compared to the grungy university of Ottawa where I had come from. Working at UBC was extremely enjoyable and I spent many pleasant hours walking the expansive campus grounds and nearby beaches writing programs in my head when I worked as a researcher there. If I had to pick one event which started Vancouver's decline it would be Expo 86. For some unknown reason a politician decided that Vancouver needed a worlds fair and major demolitions of perfectly functional industrial facilities were undertaken. I regret that I didn't take as many photographs in 1979 as I do now, but then I did use a film camera and it was relatively costly to take a photograph. I liked False Creek in 1979 and can't imagine living again amongst the huge masses of people who now inhabit tiny cubes in the sky (when they're not stuck in gridlocked traffic) where sawmills and railway tracks once existed.

When I first came out to Vancouver, it was on a beautiful spring day and the contrast between sitting in a plane on a Winnipeg airport in a blizzard while the plane wings were deiced and wandering around downtown Vancouver a few hours later was unbelievable. I still think that, in terms of sheer natural beauty, Vancouver is by far the best place I've lived. In terms of speed of deterioration of a cities environment, Vancouver also tops the list. Most people that I knew who moved to Vancouver and ended up living there had similar stories of coming there first on one of those incredible sunny days where one doesn't want to be anywhere else. Few people who first visited in Vancouver during the depressing and dreary wet periods of winter were inspired to move there.

For some reason politicians from the Vancouver area don't seem to think that just being in Vancouver is enough and they feel that they have to advertise Vancouver to the whole world. When people who have never heard of Vancouver come there on one of those beautifull sunny days when the view of the mountains and ocean tickles the brains emotional centers in that peculiar way that only standing on prospect point in Stanley park can, they start making plans on moving to Vancouver. As there isn't enough housing in Vancouver for them, new tall condominium towers arise. As speculators see the money being made in real estate they too come into Vancouver and very rapidly what was once a really nice place to live becomes a very expensive criminal infested shithole with nice views.

Instead of concerning themselves with the deterioration in the Vancouver social environment caused by narcissistic provincial politicians, municipal politicians are just as ready to strut on the international stage. Instead the municipal politicians get outraged that Walmart would dare want to build a store in Vancouver, the importance of making Vancouver a "nuclear free zone" and the importance of not having freeways in Vancouver. I would have much rather seen a freeway on False creek than what currently exists there. The other problem with Vancouver, as I discovered after living there for a few years, is that Vancouver is full of moonbats and is also a moonbat-magnet. Right now I can't think of a single reason why I would want to visit Vancouver again

Since moving to Kamloops I've seen a worrisome number of patients who see me in the walkin clinic (because they can't find a doctor in Kamloops) who are ecstatic about how much nicer Kamloops is compared to Vancouver and I hear the same stories over and over about why they would never live in Vancouver again. Now if the olympics in Vancouver causes another large influx of people from around the world who, for some deranged reason, decide they want to live in Vancouver, then the efflux of disillusioned and fed up people from Vancouver to Kamloops will dramatically increase. After all, Kamloops is the nicest place in south central BC; Kelowna is nice but I don't think that paying Vancouver housing prices so one can occasionally see the lake is worth the money. This will mean that Kamloops will start to have traffic jams like Vancouver and start down the path to unlivability. I hope I'm wrong about this but it might be prudent to start checking out properties in Spuzzum in case I have to move again.

Posted by Boris Gimbarzevsky at 22:55.34
Categories: Miscellaneous

02/01/2010

Todays date is palindromic

When one writes todays date in yyyymmdd format (20100102) it is a palindrome. It is the only palindromic date of the year and a good excuse to celebrate with a few shots of ice cold Jaegermeister. Palindromic dates are rare and the first one of the century was 20011002 and the last one ever will be 20111102. Thereafter, unless the system of dates changes, there will never again be another palindromic date. Enjoy the experience while it is possible.

Posted by Boris Gimbarzevsky at 0:41.37
Categories: Miscellaneous