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Intermittent Notes

April 2014

April 28, 2014

Tesla workshop croppedOver the last year I've adopted a "four months on, two months off" podcasting schedule. This seems to work fairly well although the "two months off" parts all have been taken up with various family medical crises. Which this time I'm hoping things will be quieter! I'm taking off the months of May and June, with the EP podcast to resume the first week of July. I'll continue blogging sporadically. Enjoy the Spring!

April 23, 2014

April 17, 2014

Reconstruction of early humanOver 24 hours down. Wow!

When I set up this website I chose BlueHost as our hosting solution because, at that time, it offered the best balance of services, reliability, and cost. And for years it continued to do so. Indeed, our bandwidth allocation was always more than we needed, BlueHost was almost perfectly reliable, and the cost remained low. But then a few years ago BlueHost founder Matt Heaton sold the company and subsequently it has been sold and resold several times. Currently it's part of the huge ISP conglomerate Endurance International Group, owned by investment bankers Warburg Pincus and GS Capital Partners. Predictably, money that should have gone into infrastructure and IT personnel has, instead, gone into bankers' bonuses. Predictably, service has greatly suffered, with outages becoming both more frequent and more severe. (This latest has its own Wikipedia entry!) It's clear that service is not the bankers' top priority...

Continue reading "BlueHost's Latest Outage"...

April 13, 2014

April 8, 2014

Lion and gazelle playing chessJust a stray thought, perhaps obvious to some but, evidently, not to any reporters in the mainstream media. For the past couple of weeks I've been seeing an increasing number of accounts of shipments of very high-tech weaponry to the Syrian rebels. Anti-tank rockets, manpads, etc., etc. Since this weekend I've been seeing other accounts of increasing Russian activity vis-à-vis Ukraine. To my mind these two sets of circumstances are clearly related in a typical tit-for-tat sort of way. But I could be wrong...

One other unrelated thought: I've read a lot of commentary about the McCutcheon decision — probably the best being a piece in the New Yorker (which hasn't gotten much play and I wonder if that's because people don't like Jeffrey Toobin) — and it strikes me that for all the nattering outrage nobody is using the word "illegitimate." People accept, as a matter of course, that a bad decision by the Supreme Court of the United States is law, albeit bad law. That's quite remarkable. At what point, for the public at large, does the word "illegitimate" begin to not unreasonably apply to the U.S. government itself, in whole or in part?