The Big Think

October 9, 2012

Not =

Filed under: Politics — jasony @ 5:14 pm

For the (very, very few) of my friends who still say that there is an equivalence between Christianity and the religion of radical Islam, I offer this as rebuttal.

The Man Who Volunteered for Auschwitz

Filed under: Uncategorized — jasony @ 9:46 am

Witold Pilecki

A Goat Owned in Common Always Starves

Filed under: Politics — jasony @ 7:47 am

Do you want your goat scruffy or shiny?

October 8, 2012


Filed under: Quoth — jasony @ 8:39 pm

“When you grow up you tend to get told that the world is the way it is and you’re life is just to live your life inside the world. Try not to bash into the walls too much. Try to have a nice family life, have fun, save a little money.

That’s a very limited life. Life can be much broader once you discover one simple fact: Everything around you that you call life was made up by people that were no smarter than you. And you can change it, you can influence it, you can build your own things that other people can use.

Once you learn that, you’ll never be the same again.”

Steve Jobs

Time Capsule

Filed under: Space — jasony @ 7:13 pm

When the EchoStar XVI television satellite lifts off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome later this year, it will be carrying a message to the future designed to last billions of years. As it swings in geosynchronous orbit 35,786 kilometers (22,236 mi) above our planet, it will have a gold-plated silicon disc bolted to it, nano-etched with 100 black-and-white images depicting life on Earth.

The disc is the culmination of the Last Pictures project by Trevor Paglen, artist in residence at MIT, and is funded by the non-profit Creative Time organization. The disc is the work of researchers at MIT and Carleton College, and is designed to last indefinitely in outer space without breaking down. By placing it in on a satellite in geosynchronous orbit, the disc might, barring intervention, remain in orbit until the earth is destroyed.

The Last Pictures project sending gold-plated time capsule into orbit

First Sale

Filed under: Politics — jasony @ 3:41 pm

The right of First Sale might be lost. This is huge news.

Tucked into the U.S. Supreme Court’s agenda this fall is a little-known case that could upend your ability to resell everything from your grandmother’s antique furniture to your iPhone 4.

At issue in Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons is the first-sale doctrine in copyright law, which allows you to buy and then sell things like electronics, books, artwork and furniture, as well as CDs and DVDs, without getting permission from the copyright holder of those products…

That’s being challenged now for products that are made abroad, and if the Supreme Court upholds an appellate court ruling, it would mean that the copyright holders of anything you own that has been made in China, Japan or Europe, for example, would have to give you permission to sell it.

more here.


Filed under: Uncategorized — jasony @ 8:36 am


“It has been true in the U.S., for a long time, that most voters want to cut government spending, yet spending inexorably rises. It turns out that this is more or less a universal phenomenon: government spending increases irrespective of voters’ desire that it do so. Why this is true is a large topic, but it seems that at least part of the answer is that the New Class that has sprung up across the modern world is still firmly in the saddle and is exploiting the rest of us at an ever-increasing rate.”


October 5, 2012

Paging Dr. Evil

Filed under: Humor and Fun — jasony @ 10:51 pm

How To Steal The Space Shuttle: A Step-By-Step Guide

October 4, 2012

Parkour Goldberg

Filed under: Humor and Fun — jasony @ 9:11 pm

The Best Action Movie You’ll See All Week = Parkour + Rube Goldberg

October 3, 2012


Filed under: Maker — jasony @ 5:37 pm

A few years ago TechShop opened in Menlo Park, California. The idea was simple: create an industrial space full of all the tools that anyone could ever want and offer membership on a monthly or yearly basis. The equipment list is extensive. Everything from a full woodworking shop to laser cutters, water jet cutters, plasma welder/cutters, machine shop, metalworking tools, CAD/Shopbot machines, milling, textile equipment, embroidery, rapid prototyping, electronics bays, industrial CNC equipment, silkscreening equipment, vacuum forming, and on and on.

They also have classes:

Arts and Crafts (ART)
Silkscreen Printing Basics
Autodesk (AUD)
Autodesk Inventor 2012 – Basics
Autodesk AutoCAD 2012 – Basics
Concepts of CNC
Vinyl Cutter SBU
CAD / CAM Software – Level 2
Tormach SBU – Level 3
ShopBot SBU – Level 3
Waterjet SBU
Computers (COM)
Illustrator for CNC
CorelDRAW for CNC
Electronics (EEE)
Soldering and Electronics Basics
Electronic Instruments
Fabrication (FAB)
Vacuum Forming SBU
Sandblasting and Powder Coating SBU
Laser Cutting (LAS)
Laser Cutter SBU
Laser Rotary SBU
Machining (MAC)
Milling Machine SBU
Metal Lathe SBU
Metal Shop (MTL)
Basic Metal Shop SBU
Angular Sheet Metal SBU
Project (PJT)
Build a bird feeder- SBU included
Build a Planter Box – SBU included
Build a wine rack + Basic Wood Shop SBU
Build a Night Light + SBU
Rapid Prototyping (PRO)
MakerBot 3d Printer SBU
Textiles (TXL)
Basic Sewing Machine SBU
CNC Embroiderer SBU
Industrial Serger SBU
Walking Foot Industrial Sewing Machine SBU
Welding / HotShop (WLD)
TIG Welding SBU
MIG Welder SBU
Wood Shop (WOD)
Wood Shop SBU
Hand Tool Basics
Wood Lathe SBU
Jointer/Planer and Table Router SBU

So all in all, it’s pretty much a wonderland for a nerdy builder/maker type person. Too bad it’s all the way in California. I’ve been watching the development of the idea and hoping that they would be successful enough to bring one to Texas. Maybe I could see one someday and at least mash my face against the window longingly. But even if one came to Austin, geographical odds were that it would open far too far away to be any good to me other than occasional use.

Well, I was up at our local Lowes store tonight and discovered that they’re just about to open one here. That’s right! Only the 6th TechShop in existence is opening up not five minutes from my doorstep. Can you tell I’m excited about it? When I looked through the adjoining window from Lowes and saw the 3d cutters, ShopBots, laser welders, and milling tools I had to try hard not to squee like a little girl with a lock of Bieber’s hair.

They’re also looking for woodworking instructors. Wonder if they’d pay me in memberships? 🙂

Flat Pack

Filed under: Computing,Maker — jasony @ 12:38 pm

I see some serious potential with this software. Like, serious potential. Wonder how much it’ll set me back?

Great Jumping Jehoshaphat. It’s free! I’ll be unavailable for a few…. weeks.

Couple this with a ShopBot and some fiberglass skills and… can you imagine the potential?

October 2, 2012

Birth of a Tool

Filed under: Maker,Woodworking — jasony @ 10:39 pm

I cannot list the number of ways I love this.

part II

Happy Birthday

Filed under: Friends,Technology — jasony @ 9:45 am

Happy B-day to my brother Troy. Coincidentally, today is also the 30th birthday of the Compact Disc! Remember those?

The CD Player, and the Commercial CD, Turn 30 – Megan Garber – The Atlantic

October 1, 2012


Filed under: Science — jasony @ 11:18 pm

…Give Me the News

Filed under: Politics — jasony @ 5:26 pm

I’ve got a bad case of mistrusting you (via the Instapundit):

And don’t accuse our staff of doctoring tape….they’re not doctoring tapes.”
– Mika Brzezinski, MSNBC.

Now, where in the world would anyone get the idea that NBC/MSNBC would ever doctor a tape and mislead viewers???

MSNBC is Exposed for Doctoring Video & Inciting Race Baiting

NBC News Fires Producer Responsible for Doctoring Tape of Zimmerman 911 Call

MSNBC & Andrea Mitchell Busted for Doctoring Romney Tape

NBC Dateline Doctors Crash, Burn & Explosion of GM Truck

Hmm..I havn’t a clue.

As I keep saying: give us the truth–not your version of it– and then let us decide for ourselves.

Bury the Lede

Filed under: Technology — jasony @ 3:19 pm

The News Mausoleum Commentary Magazine:

“The newspaper is a classic product of the Industrial Revolution. Its manufacture, which has barely changed in 150 years, requires a huge physical plant dominated by complex machines that cost hundreds of millions of dollars to purchase and maintain. Crews of manual laborers must load and unload many tons of paper, take care of the machinery as the newspaper is inked and colored and cut and folded, and oversee the interweaving of its sections. After all that, a brigade of truckers shows up to take the papers on an hours-long delivery tour. This must happen seven days a week, under any conceivable weather condition, every day of the year, forever.

And that is merely the blue-collar side of the business. The white-collar side employs hundreds of workers as well: writers and editors and photographers and graphic designers to fill the pages with copy and images, advertising salesmen to fill them with ads, a circulation department to make sure the paper gets to paying customers, and dozens of executives supervising it all.

This labor-intensive process is precisely the model that has been upended in industry after industry, driven to painful change by technological innovation and competitive threats.”

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