26 April 2012

Home Made 737 Simulator in his garage - I want to be his neighbor


Air traffic controller and private pilot James Price has never flown a jet, but he has logged plenty of time in the cockpit of an actual 737 that he converted into a flight simulator and keeps in his garage. Price had already been working on earlier versions of his simulator when a life change and similarly motivated friend led him to pursue his pastime with renewed vigor. Price told the Mercury News that on the advice of friend Matt Ford (who had already hauled home his own 737 cockpit), he visited a boneyard in Ardmore, Okla. There, Price found and purchased a 2,500-pound 737 cockpit shell of his own for $1,500. He then brought it to a hangar at Livermore Municipal Airport, in California, where he got to work. It's come a long way since then. Price now estimates his total dollar investment at close to $150,000.

Price incorporated into the shell the many genuine parts he'd accumulated since starting down this road in 1994. And then he purchased additional authentic parts. His simulator now includes the seats, controls, instruments and lights from an actual Boeing 737. The project came home from the hangar on the back of a hired semi-truck in 2009. Price took four feet off of the nose and removed some portion of the garage door to fit it inside. The internal realism is augmented with external visuals provided by three projection screens that pull down to surround the cockpit. The projectors incorporate terrain scenery for the entire world and can adjust to present near real-time weather gathered from the internet. His system allows him to fly simulated engine failures and fires or land with blown tires all while bathing in the tactile feel and even the smell of real cockpit components. Price sees the simulator as an ongoing project and expects to continue to improve on it as he's able.

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25 April 2012

Staircase vs. escalator - Fun can change behavior

32574-the_dreaded_stairs-1.wmv Watch on Posterous

This shows that engineers can be fun people, too. Staircase vs. Escalator 
Watch what a group of engineers did, using fun to get people to use a long staircase with a moving escalator right next to it... 

At first no one took the stairs, almost 97% of the people took the escalator... 

Notice how engineers changed how people reacted to climbing a long stair case as first choice...66% more people took the stairs... 

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Post 9/11 Security Commentary - Bruce Schneier nails the TSA debacle

Bruce Schneier nails it as usual with the excellent posting of his response to Kip Hawley that was on the Economist site

You can find the original here
I am posting the piece in its entirety because as always Bruce Schneier nails the TSA 

In my previous two statements, I made two basic arguments about post-9/11 airport security. One, we are not doing the right things: the focus on airports at the expense of the broader threat is not making us safer. And two, the things we are doing are wrong: the specific security measures put in place since 9/11 do not work. Kip Hawley doesn't argue with the specifics of my criticisms, but instead provides anecdotes and asks us to trust that airport security -- and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) in particular -- knows what it's doing.

He wants us to trust that a 400-ml bottle of liquid is dangerous, but transferring it to four 100-ml bottles magically makes it safe. He wants us to trust that the butter knives given to first-class passengers are nevertheless too dangerous to be taken through a security checkpoint. He wants us to trust the no-fly list: 21,000 people so dangerous they're not allowed to fly, yet so innocent they can't be arrested. He wants us to trust that the deployment of expensive full-body scanners has nothing to do with the fact that the former secretary of homeland security, Michael Chertoff, lobbies for one of the companies that makes them. He wants us to trust that there's a reason to confiscate a cupcake (Las Vegas), a 3-inch plastic toy gun (London Gatwick), a purse with an embroidered gun on it (Norfolk, VA), a T-shirt with a picture of a gun on it (London Heathrow) and a plastic lightsaber that's really a flashlight with a long cone on top (Dallas/Fort Worth).

At this point, we don't trust America's TSA, Britain's Department for Transport, or airport security in general. We don't believe they're acting in the best interests of passengers. We suspect their actions are the result of politicians and government appointees making decisions based on their concerns about the security of their own careers if they don't act tough on terror, and capitulating to public demands that "something must be done."

In this final statement, I promised to discuss the broader societal harms of post-9/11 airport security. This loss of trust -- in both airport security and counterterrorism policies in general -- is the first harm. Trust is fundamental to society. There is an enormous amount written about this; high-trust societies are simply happier and more prosperous than low-trust societies. Trust is essential for both free markets and democracy. This is why open-government laws are so important; trust requires government transparency. The secret policies implemented by airport security harm society because of their very secrecy.

The humiliation, the dehumanisation and the privacy violations are also harms. That Mr Hawley dismisses these as mere "costs in convenience" demonstrates how out-of-touch the TSA is from the people it claims to be protecting. Additionally, there's actual physical harm: the radiation from full-body scanners still not publicly tested for safety; and the mental harm suffered by both abuse survivors and children: the things screeners tell them as they touch their bodies are uncomfortably similar to what child molesters say.

In 2004, the average extra waiting time due to TSA procedures was 19.5 minutes per person. That's a total economic loss -- in America -- of $10 billion per year, more than the TSA's entire budget. The increased automobile deaths due to people deciding to drive instead of fly is 500 per year. Both of these numbers are for America only, and by themselves demonstrate that post-9/11 airport security has done more harm than good.

The current TSA measures create an even greater harm: loss of liberty. Airports are effectively rights-free zones. Security officers have enormous power over you as a passenger. You have limited rights to refuse a search. Your possessions can be confiscated. You cannot make jokes, or wear clothing, that airport security does not approve of. You cannot travel anonymously. (Remember when we would mock Soviet-style "show me your papers" societies? That we've become inured to the very practice is a harm.) And if you're on a certain secret list, you cannot fly, and you enter a Kafkaesque world where you cannot face your accuser, protest your innocence, clear your name, or even get confirmation from the government that someone, somewhere, has judged you guilty. These police powers would be illegal anywhere but in an airport, and we are all harmed -- individually and collectively -- by their existence.

In his first statement, Mr Hawley related a quote predicting "blood running in the aisles" if small scissors and tools were allowed on planes. That was said by Corey Caldwell, an Association of Flight Attendants spokesman, in 2005. It was not the statement of someone who is thinking rationally about airport security; it was the voice of irrational fear.

Increased fear is the final harm, and its effects are both emotional and physical. By sowing mistrust, by stripping us of our privacy -- and in many cases our dignity -- by taking away our rights, by subjecting us to arbitrary and irrational rules, and by constantly reminding us that this is the only thing between us and death by the hands of terrorists, the TSA and its ilk are sowing fear. And by doing so, they are playing directly into the terrorists' hands.

The goal of terrorism is not to crash planes, or even to kill people; the goal of terrorism is to cause terror. Liquid bombs, PETN, planes as missiles: these are all tactics designed to cause terror by killing innocents. But terrorists can only do so much. They cannot take away our freedoms. They cannot reduce our liberties. They cannot, by themselves, cause that much terror. It's our reaction to terrorism that determines whether or not their actions are ultimately successful. That we allow governments to do these things to us -- to effectively do the terrorists' job for them -- is the greatest harm of all.

Return airport security checkpoints to pre-9/11 levels. Get rid of everything that isn't needed to protect against random amateur terrorists and won't work against professional al-Qaeda plots. Take the savings thus earned and invest them in investigation, intelligence, and emergency response: security outside the airport, security that does not require us to play guessing games about plots. Recognise that 100% safety is impossible, and also that terrorism is not an "existential threat" to our way of life. Respond to terrorism not with fear but with indomitability. Refuse to be terrorized.

And that's the point folks - refuse to be terrorized and stop wasting tax dollars on what South Park aptly named the Toilet Security Administration who's methods and as Buuce aptly points out is as close to Child Molesters. Everyone should opt out - at a minimum because of the safety concerns but also because it is the only options that will eventually bring the current faulty system to a halt and bring the system back into a more reasonable and intelligent approach. 

Everyone in the TSA is incentivised to perpetuate the system with no regard to the reality of the threat. Asking someone form the TSA if the system is working is like asking the government if we need more or less government......

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Boeing 797 Technology

It can comfortably fly 10,000 Miles (16,000 km) at Mach 0.88 or 654 mph (1,046 km/h) with 1000 passengers on board! They have kept this secret long enough.
This shot was taken last month by an amateur photographer.

The  BOEING  797

It can comfortably fly 10,000 Miles (16,000 km) at Mach 0.88 or 654 mph (1,046 km/h) with 1000 passengers on board!

They have kept this secret long enough.
This shot was taken last month by an amateur photographer.

The  BOEING  797
Boeing is preparing this 1000 passenger Jet Liner that could reshape the Air Travel Industry. Its radical "Blended Wing & Fuselage" design has been developed by Boeing in cooperation with NASA Langley Research Centre. The mammoth aircraft will have a wing span of 265 feet compared to 211 feet of its 747, and its been designed to fit within the newly created Air Terminals for the 555 seat Airbus A380, which is 262 feet wide.


The new 797 is Boeing's direct response to the Airbus A380, which has racked up orders for 159 already. Boeing decided to kill its 747X Stretched Super Jumbo in 2003 after little interest was shown for it by Airline Companies, but continued to develop its "Ultimate Airbus Crusher", the 797 at its Phantom Works Research Facility in Long Beach, California.  The Airbus A380 had been in the works since 1999 and has accumulated $13 Billion in development costs, which gives Boeing a huge advantage. More so because Airbus is thus committed to the older style tubular structure for their aircraft for decades to come.


There are several big advantages in the "Blended Wing & Fuselage" design, the most important being the ‘Lift to Drag’ ratio which is expected to increase by an amazing 50%, resulting in an overall weight reduction of the aircraft by 25%, making it an estimated 33% more fuel efficient than the A380, and thus making the Airbus's $13 Billion Dollar investment look pretty shaky.

"High Airframe Rigidity" is another key factor in the "Blended Wing & Fuselage" technology. It reduces turbulence and creates less stress on the airframe which adds to fuel efficiency, giving the 797 a tremendous 10,000 Mile range with 1,000 passengers on board cruising comfortably at Mach 0.88 or 654 MPH, which gives it another advantage over the tube-and-wing designed A380's 570 MPH.


The exact date ! for introduction of the 797 is as yet unclear, but the battle lines are clearly drawn in the high-stakes war for future civilian aircraft supremacy.

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Science and Art Indistinguishable #space

Motivational Posters

24 April 2012

Parenting tips

Hmmm interesting idea...


GV: 301-355-0877

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Fine Restaurant….

An Englishman, a Scotsman, an Irishman, a Welshman, a Latvian, a Turk, a German, an Indian, several Americans (including a Southerner, a New Englander, and a Californian) an Argentinean, a Dane, an Australian, a Slovakian, an Egyptian, a Japanese, a Moroccan, a Frenchman, a New Zealander, a Spaniard, a Russian, a Guatemalan, a Colombian, a Pakistani, a Malaysian, a Croatian, a Uzbek, a Cypriot, a Pole, a Lithuanian, a Chinese, a Sri Lankan, a Lebanese, a Cayman Islander, a Ugandan, a Vietnamese, a Korean, a Uruguayan, a Czech, an Icelander, a Mexican, a Finn, a Honduran, a Panamanian, an Andorran, an Israeli, a Venezuelan, a Fijian, a Peruvian, an Estonian, a Brazilian, a Portuguese, a Liechtensteiner, a Mongolian, a Hungarian, a Canadian, a Moldovan, a Haitian, a Norfolk Islander, a Macedonian, a Bolivian, a Cook Islander, a Tajikistani, a Samoan, an Armenian, an Aruban, an Albanian, a Greenlander, a Micronesian, a Virgin Islander, a Georgian, a Bahaman, a Belarusian, a Cuban, a Tongan, a Cambodian, a Qatari, an Azerbaijani, a Romanian, a Chilean, a Kyrgyzstani, a Jamaican, a Filipino, a Ukrainian, a Dutchman, an Ecuadorian, a Costa Rican, a Swede, a Bulgarian, a Serb, a Swiss, a Greek, a Belgian, a Singaporean, an Italian, a Norwegian and 47 Africans all from different African countries all walk into a fine restaurant...

The maĆ®tre d' scrutinizes the group one by one, and bars their entrance saying, 

"Sorry, you can't come in here without a Thai."

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How marble headstones are mined and engraved for fallen soldiers

This is an interesting video about the mining of marble blocks in Danby, Vermont and how headstones are made, that are used for ALL military headstones.
One of the headstones shown was recently engraved for the last surviving soldier of World War I, Frank Buckles who died in 2011 at the age of 110.

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Job Opening in Africa ...THIS IS WHAT REAL MEN DO

Job Opening in Africa
 First, we wrap the "hole guy's" arm in a skin for protection




Then we find a big hole and the "hole guy" crawls in.




We use modern lighting



There it is.



Those must be eggs.





I let it take my protected arm, sort of like noodling for fish.




Then my buddy pulls me out with the snake attached.




Ain't it a beauty?




It will feed the whole village for a while.



Snake Noodling - - - - - What real men do!

Maybe standing in line at the grocery store isn't

as bad as it seems

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21 April 2012

Coolest Chemistry Teacher ever - he reminds me of my Chemistry Teacher at School

I had a chemistry teacher at school very much like this one who instilled much of my love of the subject and the excitement associated with learning
So a personal nod to Jack Mayne - thanks for getting me excited about science and Chemistry

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Having Fun with Barrels

New form of entertainment - total disregard for the effect of gravity

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Maybe the best illusion of all time

Fred Astaire and Eleanor Powell in 1940 Tap Dance extravaganza

There is only this one film! Do yourself a favor and watch it.
 Fred Astaire never elected to be paired with Eleanor Powell
 again.  He later said it was not to his benefit, she was just
 too great, but they were both great.
Frank Sinatra said we will not see the likes of this again.  I
 think he was right!
Eleanor Powell is fully clothed with a dress below her knees, 
 and in high heels, sadly a bygone era of true beauty, civility
 and grace.
1. They are not rolling around on the floor.
2. The year:  1940 (71 years ago).
3. The narrator is Frank Sinatra.
 4. It was filmed in ONE unedited Black & White camera shot! 

FredAstaireEleanorPowell1.wmv Watch on Posterous

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Short Neurological Test

If you can do this, pass it on to friends with the word YES in the subject, but only if you can read this.
A Short Neurological Test

1- Find the C below..
Please do not use any cursor help.


2- If you already found the C, now find the 6 below.


3 - Now find the N below. It's a little more difficult.


This is NOT a joke. If you were able to pass these 3 tests, you can cancel your annual visit to your neurologist. Your brain is great and you're far from having a close relationship with Alzheimer. 


eonvrye that can raed this rsaie your hnad.
To my 'selected' strange-minded friends:

If you can read the following paragraph, forward it on to your friends and the person that sent it to you with 'yes' in the subject line.

Only great minds can read this 
This is weird, but interesting! 

If you can raed this, you have a sgtrane mnid too 

Can you raed this? Olny 55 plepoe out of 100 can. 

I cdnuolt blveiee that I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd what I was rdanieg. The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid, aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it dseno't mtaetr in what oerdr the ltteres in a word are, the olny iproamtnt tihng is that the frsit and last ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can still raed it whotuit a pboerlm. This is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the word as a wlohe. Azanmig huh? Yaeh and I awlyas tghuhot slpeling was ipmorantt! If you can raed this forwrad it 

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Hot Rods

HotRods-1nich.pps Download this file

True street rods from days gone-by.

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Motivational Posters with a Kicker

Motivational Posters with a Kicker

"Peace is that brief glorious moment in history when 
everybody stands around reloading".
--Thomas Jefferson

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Yes it Does Exist

Not Photoshop - Ironically in Amish Country Pennsylvania


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Brilliant Sarcastic Responses to Well Meaning Signs



Most of these signs were designed to help people — to get where they're going, to find a pet, to avoid grievous bodily harm — and yet some writing-utensil-wielding wiseasses felt compelled to come along and totally deface them. We're so glad they did. Does that mean we value a wry sense of humor or even just a lazy reference to an outdated song over the safety of our fellow human beings? We're insulted you would even ask. Of course we do.

















Updated 2/22/12:







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