Bill Whittle on being

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Great essay - this guy is a national treasure:

Happy 207th birthday

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Charles Darwin was born on this day 207 years ago.

Great idea for an app

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From the Los Angeles Times:

Scientists develop new app that uses your cellphone to detect earthquakes
When the earth shakes in California, the first place you are likely to hear about it is on social media.

"Earthquake!" "Did you feel that?" "How big?" are common messages on Twitter and Facebook as Californians try to share information on their mobile phones in real time.

Now, UC Berkeley scientists are hoping to capture that sharing impulse in a massive science experiment: Using cellphones to detect earthquakes as soon as they start. They hope that by turning mobile phones into vast data collection points, they can quickly glean information about the quakes and warn those farther away from the epicenter that shaking is on the way.

A bit more:

Users who download the app will be sending data to scientists when an earthquake as small as a magnitude 5 hits.

By harvesting information from hundreds of phones closest to the earthquake, scientists will be able to test a computer system that could, in the future, dispatch early warnings that shaking is seconds or minutes away to people farther away from the earthquake’s origin. For instance, if a quake started in San Bernardino, cell phones there could register the quake and quickly help send warnings to smartphone users in Los Angeles.

“This is a citizen science project,” said Richard Allen, director of the Berkeley Seismological Laboratory at UC Berkeley. “This is an app that provides information, education, motivation — to the people who’ve downloaded it — to get ready for earthquakes. Those same people are contributing to our further understanding of earthquakes, because they’re collecting data that will help us better understand the earthquake process.”

A very clever idea - cell phones already have g-force and orientation sensors; a simple matter to tap into these and look for a specific kind of signal.

A new Ted Cruz video

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His videos are great - spot on and a single message strongly delivered:

Inspired by this classic scene from Office Space.

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A tip of the hat to Maggie's Farm for the image.

You might want to go back and re-watch Bill Whittle's video on the matter - the great stuff starts at 7:40 if you are pressed for time.

Also Jimmy Carter's wonderful endorsement of Ted Cruz.

Turned out to be a nice day for a change

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The rain let up around 2:00PM - started again this evening but it is just spitting and not serious precipitation.

River is now four times normal flow and no sign of letting up - we have an inversion with unseasonably warm temperatures at high elevations and this is causing a lot of snowmelt - what we know as Cascade Concrete.

Potential for flooding when the additional forecast rain comes Sunday and Monday:

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Did most of everything I needed to in town, went to the store, worked in the office there for a bit and then decided to go out for Mexican in a nearby town.

Surf for a bit and then to bed - long day tomorrow.

Rain rain go away

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Coming down heavy - the river is about three times normal flow. Same is forecast for the next couple of days.

Arrgggghhhh... This is getting old.

Heading out the door

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A shower at the apartment, coffee and pick up the Friday pastry order and then to town for some banking. Back this afternoon...

The refugees in Germany

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The million refugees in Germany have been highly vetted and all have a genuine compassionate need to escape the brutality in Syria.

The refugees in Germany are not trying to establish a caliphate in Germany.

From the Security Intelligence newsletter:

‘Islamic State Commander’ Found Living As Refugee In Rural German Village
In the latest of a series of raids, German police have searched two homes in a rural village after a television channel interviewed a suspected Islamic State commander living there as a refugee.

Sankt Johann is a small village in the south west German state, Rhineland-Palatinate. Something of a rural idyll, its 800 residents live between vineyards in the shadow of a 14th century Gothic church. And yet, as SPIEGEL TV reports, this weekend it was the scene of police raids on two Islamic State-linked suspects living in refugee housing.

But he really is a nice guy - just misunderstood:

They had identified him as a man called Bassam, a notorious commander said to be responsible for the deaths of dozens of people.

A 32-year-old man, he allegedly fought in the ranks of Islamic State fighters in the eastern Syrian city of Deir ez-Zor before leaving via Turkey to seek asylum in Germany. Starting his fighting career with rebel jihadists in Al Kasra, the man in question is understood to have joined Sunni Islamist militias fighting the Syrian Government as part of the al-Qaeda affiliated al-Nusra Front, before graduating to the even more extreme Salafi jihadists of Islamic State.

His original ambition had been to be a suicide bomber, but his brother had used his position as a Sharia judge to secure him his officer’s role. In late summer last year Bassam was captured at a checkpoint north of Aleppo by Free Syrian Army soldiers following intelligence that he was fleeing to Turkey with tens of thousands of dollars in cash. For reasons unknown he was released after 20 days, with a memory card for a telephone holding masses of Islamic State propaganda but without his money.

Europe is signing its own death warrent by letting so many radicals into their cities. Again, the US and Canada should go over there to rescue the artwork before things get out of hand. This is serious...

Meet Tregoweth Edmond "Treg" Brown

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Treg Brown? Sound effects editor for Warner Brothers - Looney Tunes cartoons.

From 2004 - really nice documentary. Parts one and two:

And not to forget Carl Stalling - handled the orchestral side of things.

England gradually waking up

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Thank God! From the Express:

100,000 say NO to the EU: Poll says Britons wants Brexit vote
An online poll for Express.co.uk has now seen more than 100,000 people vote to end years of centrist control by Brussels and set Britain free to manage its own affairs.

Of 111,027 who have voted 102,144 – or 92 per cent – said they wanted Britain to end its membership of the 28-member bloc.

Just seven per cent said they wanted Britain to remain a member and one per cent was undecided.

The exclusive poll result follows disappointment at David Cameron’s attempts to renegotiate Britain’s relationship with the EU - a deal which will see migrants still paid benefits, no return of control of our borders and no guarantee that Parliament will regain its sovereignty.

Coming to their senses finally. Multiculturalism is evil and it is dying. The Frankfurt School has done incalculable damage to the Western world and it needs to be tarred, feathered and driven into the river once and for all. Giving academics control over our daily life is the height of folly and will result in failure every single time.

Ted Cruz video - pulled

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Dang - it was a good video but it turns out that one of the actors had worked in the porn video industry for a while. Not exactly a role model.

She has found her faith and is now a conservative Christian but still...

Fortunately, a copy has been saved at the link above:

A fun meeting

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I like the emergency communications meetings because they stretch my mind - always learning new stuff.

We are participating in a National Field Day event this June and also in the Cascadia Rising earthquake drill (also in June - busy month!) so a lot of stuff to cover in a short period of time.

Off to town

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Got a WECG meeting tonight at 7:00PM so heading in a bit early to get some dinner.

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More on Al Sharpton not paying taxes from the New York Times: As Sharpton Rose, So Did His Unpaid Taxes

More on Bernie from Investor's Business Daily: Bernie Sanders, The Bum Who Wants Your Money

Another Ted Cruz advertisement

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Whomever is running his advertising is brilliant:

Talk about poor sitrep

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From Seattle station KOMO:

Driver T-bones moving Amtrak train in Burlington
Police say a woman drove around the crossing arms and T-boned a moving train Wednesday night in Burlington.

The woman was driving eastbound in the 400 block of Greenleaf Avenue at about 8:15 p.m. when she went around the railroad crossing arms and crashed into the side of an Amtrak train, according to Sgt. Kyle Spevacek with the Burlington Police Department.

The Amtrak engineer didn't initially realize the train had been hit and continued on roughly 30 miles before he noticed a part of the woman's car stuck in the side of the engine. The train finally stopped near Marysville to be inspected.

Police say the car was totalled in the crash, but the driver didn't appear to be seriously injured. Officers found her walking several blocks away and drove her to a nearby hospital to get checked out.

Spevacek said police plan on serving a search warrant at the hospital for a blood draw to determine if the woman was impaired at the time of the crash.

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I am betting that the blood draw will show something. Geeeezzz - not noticing a moving train especially after driving around the barrier arms.

From Caltech's website:

Gravitational Waves Detected 100 Years After Einstein's Prediction
For the first time, scientists have observed ripples in the fabric of spacetime called gravitational waves, arriving at the earth from a cataclysmic event in the distant universe. This confirms a major prediction of Albert Einstein’s 1915 general theory of relativity and opens an unprecedented new window onto the cosmos.

Gravitational waves carry information about their dramatic origins and about the nature of gravity that cannot otherwise be obtained. Physicists have concluded that the detected gravitational waves were produced during the final fraction of a second of the merger of two black holes to produce a single, more massive spinning black hole. This collision of two black holes had been predicted but never observed.

The gravitational waves were detected on September 14, 2015 at 5:51 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time (09:51 UTC) by both of the twin Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO) detectors, located in Livingston, Louisiana, and Hanford, Washington, USA. The LIGO Observatories are funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF), and were conceived, built, and are operated by Caltech and MIT. The discovery, accepted for publication in the journal Physical Review Letters, was made by the LIGO Scientific Collaboration (which includes the GEO Collaboration and the Australian Consortium for Interferometric Gravitational Astronomy) and the Virgo Collaboration using data from the two LIGO detectors.

Based on the observed signals, LIGO scientists estimate that the black holes for this event were about 29 and 36 times the mass of the sun, and the event took place 1.3 billion years ago. About 3 times the mass of the sun was converted into gravitational waves in a fraction of a second—with a peak power output about 50 times that of the whole visible universe. By looking at the time of arrival of the signals—the detector in Livingston recorded the event 7 milliseconds before the detector in Hanford—scientists can say that the source was located in the Southern Hemisphere.

According to general relativity, a pair of black holes orbiting around each other lose energy through the emission of gravitational waves, causing them to gradually approach each other over billions of years, and then much more quickly in the final minutes. During the final fraction of a second, the two black holes collide into each other at nearly one-half the speed of light and form a single more massive black hole, converting a portion of the combined black holes’ mass to energy, according to Einstein’s formula E=mc2. This energy is emitted as a final strong burst of gravitational waves. It is these gravitational waves that LIGO has observed.

Very cool - might have to do a road trip out to the Hanford, WA detector.

It is easy to run several different applications simultaneously on a computer - this is especially true with servers. One server can host multiple email accounts and web sites.

It seems that Hillary's server was doing this - from FOX News:

Official: Top Clinton aides also handled ‘top secret’ intel on server
At least a dozen email accounts handled the “top secret” intelligence that was found on Hillary Clinton’s server and recently deemed too damaging for national security to release, a U.S. government official close to the review told Fox News. 

The official said the accounts include not only Clinton’s but those of top aides – including Cheryl Mills, Huma Abedin, Jake Sullivan and Philippe Reines – as well as State Department Under Secretary for Management Patrick F. Kennedy and others.  There is no public evidence they were authorized to receive the intelligence some of which was beyond Top Secret.

A second source not authorized to speak on the record said the number of accounts involved could be as high as 30 and reflects how the intelligence was broadly shared, replied to, and copied to individuals using the unsecured server.

“My contacts with former colleagues and current active duty personnel involved in sensitive programs reveal a universal feeling that the HRC issue is more serious than the general public realizes,”  Dan Maguire,  a former strategic  planner with Africom, and with 46 years combined service, told Fox.  “Most opine they would already be behind bars if they had apparently compromised sensitive information as reported.”

A bit more:

Former U.S. Attorney General Michael Mukasey told Fox, “It is counterintuitive to suggest that they (Clinton’s aides) all had authorization and access through a non-secure server to information of that sensitivity.” 

The State Department recently confirmed that the messages in question include the most sensitive kind of intelligence. On Jan. 29, Fox News first reported that some emails on Clinton’s server were too damaging to release in any form. The State Department subsequently announced that 22 “top secret” emails were being withheld in full; these were the messages being handled by more than a dozen accounts.

The downside with having many accounts on one server is that if someone is able to hack into the core level of the server (gaining root access), all of the accounts are visible. We know that the Russians and the Chinese had access - how much more did they get beyond Hillary's emails.

A day at the farm

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Waiting for the well people to show up.

Heading out for coffee and then back home.

Meeting of my emergency radio communications group later tonight.

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