Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

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Warren
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Warren » 29 Sep 2019, 00:14

Pham Nuwen wrote:
28 Sep 2019, 23:16
I can't tell if Warren intended to make me laugh out loud or not. Because he did.
I uh, really didn't think I was being subtle there.
I'll leave it to the reader to interpret.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Pham Nuwen » 29 Sep 2019, 08:04

That's why you confused me.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Aresen » 02 Oct 2019, 14:20

The conspiracy theorists are going to love this:

Mint's new glow-in-the-dark coin features Canada's most famous UFO
The Royal Canadian Mint has issued a glow-in-the-dark coin that captures the eerie scene more than 50 years ago when awestruck witnesses reporting seeing what was officially documented as a UFO crash off southwestern Nova Scotia.

The colourful image on the rectangular coin shows three fishermen aboard a boat, staring and gesturing as the ghostly image of a flying saucer appears to plunge into the dark waters near Shag Harbour.

But something special happens when the included black-light flashlight is used to illuminate the coin in the dark: the spaceship disappears, but four orange lights remain in the sky, as described by those who reported seeing something that moonless night on Oct. 4, 1967.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by JasonL » 04 Oct 2019, 21:47

Hanging at my local bar - apparently the band is fronted by Bronson Arroyo - former pitcher for the Reds.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Warren » 04 Oct 2019, 22:57

Image
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by JasonL » 04 Oct 2019, 23:11

He seemed to like Pearl Jam. Nice guy tho.

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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by JD » 08 Oct 2019, 13:52

From the Annals of IT Screwups:
On 2 September 1988, the expected transmission from Phobos 1 was not received. This was traced to a faulty key-command that was sent on 28 August from ground control in Yevpatoria. A technician unintentionally left out a single hyphen in one of the keyed commands. All commands were supposed to be proofread by a computer before being transmitted, but the computer that checked code was malfunctioning. The technician violated procedure and transmitted the command before the computer could be fixed to proofread it. This minor alteration in code deactivated the attitude thrusters. By losing its lock on the Sun, the spacecraft could no longer properly orient its solar arrays, thus depleting its batteries.

Software instructions to turn off the probe's attitude control, normally a fatal operation, were part of a routine used when testing the spacecraft on the ground. Normally this routine would be removed before launch. However, the software was coded in PROMs, and so removing the test code would have required removing and replacing the entire computer. Because of time pressure from the impending launch, engineers decided to leave the command sequence in, though it should never be used. However, a single-character error in constructing an upload sequence resulted in the command executing, with subsequent loss of the spacecraft.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phobos_1#Malfunction
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Ellie » 08 Oct 2019, 15:32

Awww, the poor technician! I would die of guilt if I did something like that.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Solitudinarian » 08 Oct 2019, 16:49

I’m sure he died of something.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by JD » 08 Oct 2019, 17:20

Actually, if you read the Wikipedia entry, they do discuss the consequences of what happened. Nobody got shot (I think) but it is not encouraging when your project director quotes Lavrenti Beria saying "Let's make them work for now. We can shoot them all later"...
After the incident at Yevpatoria, an investigation was immediately ordered to determine who was responsible for the failure. Nevertheless, disciplinary action was postponed until the completion of the Phobos 2 mission. This was to prevent the demoralization of the Phobos 2 team. Any penalization of the Phobos 1 team would create anxiety among the Phobos 2 team and reduce the chances of mission success. This postponement of punitive measures was urged by IKI director Roald Sagdeev. He quoted the former secret-service chief under Stalin, Lavrenti Beria, who said, "Let's make them work for now. We can shoot them all later." The investigation concluded with the dismissal of the ground control commander at Yevpatoria and the acknowledgement that the computer system was poorly designed.
And, in all fairness, the incident stemmed, like most incidents, from a bunch of causes. You really should not leave a "shut the whole thing down" command in a remotely-controlled spacecraft. If the proofreading computer is in the critical path, it should absolutely be redundant. There was apparently a policy "no running commands manually if the proofreading computer is down", but there doesn't seem to have been any mechanism to enforce the policy. Etc., etc.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by JD » 11 Oct 2019, 10:53

In 1915, the German government, facing food shortages in the nation, decided that pigs were an inefficient use of vegetables and grain that could go to feed people instead, so millions of pigs were slaughtered. However, they did not take into effect the overall economic impact of the plan, and so it had no practical impact on the food supply - and, apparently, as the pork supply dropped but demand remained constant or got even higher, there was that much more profit to be made in raising pigs.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schweinemord
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Hugh Akston » 24 Oct 2019, 14:34

With an MLB umpire threatening cival war over the impeachment proceedings, I'm starting to nurse a ghoulish curiosity about how many people would actually sign up to fight in such a conflict. Could we maybe wall off one or two states and dump all of the combatants into them Hunger Games style?
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Warren » 24 Oct 2019, 14:56

Hugh Akston wrote:
24 Oct 2019, 14:34
With an MLB umpire threatening cival war over the impeachment proceedings, I'm starting to nurse a ghoulish curiosity about how many people would actually sign up to fight in such a conflict. Could we maybe wall off one or two states and dump all of the combatants into them Hunger Games style?
I nominate Mississippi. And Alabama if needs be.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Hugh Akston » 24 Oct 2019, 15:37

I was kind of thinking a blue state next to a red state so the combatants think they're actually fighting for something. Maybe a couple states nobody would miss, like Michigan vs Wisconsin, or West Virginia vs That Other Virginia.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by thoreau » 24 Oct 2019, 15:51

Hugh Akston wrote:
24 Oct 2019, 15:37
Maybe a couple states nobody would miss, like Michigan vs Wisconsin
Nah, that could lead to an international incident, because WI would quickly seize the Upper Peninsula and then MI might send reinforcements via Lake Huron, which could wind up drawing Canada into the war.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Aresen » 24 Oct 2019, 16:32

thoreau wrote:
24 Oct 2019, 15:51
Hugh Akston wrote:
24 Oct 2019, 15:37
Maybe a couple states nobody would miss, like Michigan vs Wisconsin
Nah, that could lead to an international incident, because WI would quickly seize the Upper Peninsula and then MI might send reinforcements via Lake Huron, which could wind up drawing Canada into the war.
Give us the popcorn concession and we're cool.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Warren » 24 Oct 2019, 16:49

HEY HEY HEY. MI & WI are probably the two best states in the whole republic.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by JD » 25 Oct 2019, 13:45

People have reported receiving mysterious small packages from China, containing either very low-value items like some cheap plastic hair clips, or nothing at all. Their names and addresses are perfectly correct on the packaging, but it's nothing that they ordered, and there's no indication why they're receiving them.

Turns out that it's essentially a kind of e-commerce fraud called "brushing" perpetrated by Chinese sellers, with the recipients of the packages as unwitting stand-ins, made possible by the fact that the US Postal Service signed an agreement that made shipping small packages from China to the US ridiculously cheap.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/wadeshepar ... -about-it/
https://www.forbes.com/sites/wadeshepar ... usa-cheap/
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Warren » 26 Oct 2019, 09:03

JD wrote:
25 Oct 2019, 13:45
People have reported receiving mysterious small packages from China, containing either very low-value items like some cheap plastic hair clips, or nothing at all. Their names and addresses are perfectly correct on the packaging, but it's nothing that they ordered, and there's no indication why they're receiving them.

Turns out that it's essentially a kind of e-commerce fraud called "brushing" perpetrated by Chinese sellers, with the recipients of the packages as unwitting stand-ins, made possible by the fact that the US Postal Service signed an agreement that made shipping small packages from China to the US ridiculously cheap.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/wadeshepar ... -about-it/
https://www.forbes.com/sites/wadeshepar ... usa-cheap/
How the scam works and why you should care
Basically, a "brushing" firm somehow got hold of McGeehan’s name and address -- she imagines this happened from placing legitimate orders on AliExpress, the international wing of China’s Alibaba -- and then created user profiles for “her” on the e-commerce sites that they wish to have higher sales ratings and favorable reviews on. They then shop for orders via the fake account, compare prices, and mimic everything an actual customer would do, before finally making a purchase from their client's store. When delivery is confirmed, they then leave positive reviews that appear to the e-commerce platform as "verified."
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by JD » 31 Oct 2019, 13:11

A hilarious and heartwarming story: A middle school printed emergency numbers on the back of the school ID cards, including a suicide prevention hotline. However, they typo'ed the suicide prevention number...and the one they printed was actually a phone sex line. But when the owner of the phone sex line found out what had happened, he had all calls to that number forwarded to the suicide prevention hotline.
https://www.cnn.com/2019/10/30/us/suici ... index.html
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Jennifer » 31 Oct 2019, 15:19

Yikes. The other day I dragged out my old phone-sex story and re-read it for the first time in years -- as super-unpleasant as that experience was, it would've been far worse had I picked up the phone to hear a suicidal teenager on the other end.

The story doesn't mention how the mistake came about, though -- was the phone sex number only one digit away from the suicide hotline, presumably?
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Shem » 31 Oct 2019, 15:53

Jennifer wrote:
31 Oct 2019, 15:19
The story doesn't mention how the mistake came about, though -- was the phone sex number only one digit away from the suicide hotline, presumably?
It says in the article that numbers were transposed.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Jennifer » 31 Oct 2019, 15:58

Thanks. Serves me right for attempting comprehension before caffeination.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by Aresen » 31 Oct 2019, 16:08

I just saw a post about Luther's 95 theses, which were first posted on October 31, 1517.

Although Luther would have burned us just as enthusiastically as the Popes would, it's still an important day in liberty. His action shattered the monolith of western Christianity, which allowed the rest of us to weasel free through the cracks.
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Re: Random Observations C.A (306 pages is enough)

Post by D.A. Ridgely » 31 Oct 2019, 16:10

Aresen wrote:
31 Oct 2019, 16:08
I just saw a post about Luther's 95 theses, which were first posted on October 31, 1517.

Although Luther would have burned us just as enthusiastically as the Popes would, it's still an important day in liberty. His action shattered the monolith of western Christianity, which allowed the rest of us to weasel free through the cracks.
Tell that to the Orthodox.

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