Friday, February 25, 2011

Pulp Fiction Theme: Surf Rider

Some cool instrumentals to get you ready for the weekend. I actually prefer instrumentals over songs with voices, sometimes words get in the way of your own mind wanderings.

Further to my previous post, wish those charactors from Pulp Fiction would solve our Libyian problem.

We told ya so….

“We” being the blogsphere and right of centre types for the most part who were asking: "Who in their right mind would want Libya on the UN’s Human Rights Council?" It’s like giving the keys to the henhouse to a hungry fox. Speaking of Fox, they asked back in May 2010 “WTF” is the UN smoking appointing this nutbar to the UNHRC.

Now that he is machine gunning, bombing and executing his own people with wild abandon, the UNHRC ask that Libya be suspended from it’s ranks, a little late as even Libya’s diplomats have resigned and told Ghadhafi he was a nutbar. (I reserve judgement on their flip-flop, it’s quite possible that the nutbar had their relatives held as “guests” to ensure compliance overseas.)

But all is not lost for the supporters of hypocrisy and the UN (but I repeat myself) Iran who was not chosen for a seat at the esteemed UNHCR, still got a seat on the UN’s Woman’s Commission. Seriously what could possible go wrong with that?

Thursday, February 24, 2011

U.S. vs Canada: Suicide Edition

Here is an interesting look at suicides in Canada and the US, the long and skinny of it is that method has little effect on the rates. Anti-firearm types always claim that restrictive gun laws reduce suicide by gun, well they are telling the truth, only it’s a tiny slice of the truth, what really happens is that the people who wish to commit suicide will do it anyways.
I did Search and Rescue for the Coast Guard, I got to watch far to many people jump off of bridges and what a sudden impact with water does to the human body is not worth thinking about, even worse when they live for a couple of days after that. It’s also hard when the body is not found and the family can not have closure. We once rescued the same guy out of the Fraser river two days in a row. They would send him to hospital and they would release him, on the third day he went missing, wouldn’t be surprised if he was the donor of one of those missing feet. If you really care about suicide rates, forget method and go after the causes. The only thing that stops a person from taking their life from what I have seen is a strong interaction with empathetic person.

So on the whole then, the U.S. and Canada would appear to be very similar to one another where deaths caused by self-inflicted injuries are concerned. If Canada's population were identical to the United States, it would likely see the same number of suicides each year, or actually a bit more than that, given its slightly higher suicide rate.

Things change dramatically however when we consider the methods by which people in the U.S. and Canada have committed suicide in the years from 2000 through 2007

Read the rest at Political Calculations

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Look! Is it a bird? A plane? No it’s neither!

This is very cool tech, copying the hummingbird does offer a lot of advantages in regards to stealth, manoeuvrability and size. It would be interesting to see what are the power consumption rates for the wings compared to a more traditional rotor. I suspect flight endurance times are likely between 5-10 minutes. Article on it here.

I took part in UAV trials for the Canadian military back in the mid 80's in CFB Suffield, Alberta, back then they were called "RPV's" I don't think the program every got anywhere but it sure was interesting.

Walmart is selling camera equipped helicopters for around $69, quite amazing how cost efficent the tech is now. I'm sure by next year they will be twice as good! If you plan on buying a small helicopter, you can choose from IR (Infrared) or RC (Radio Controlled) RC gives you better control, but costs almost double. I bought this one and am having a lot of fun with it, mind Zeus does not think much of it!!

You can see more about it at Cobratoys