Sunday, April 22, 2007

Moving on up

I'm changing URL's for this blog, I started to when
we moved to colombia, but I never really have time.

Please update your links.


Thursday, April 19, 2007

Let us drink, let us sing, let us for one more night spit in the face of death!

Another flowchart today from Achewood.
Any time a cartoon includes a flowchart spitting in the face
of death, you gotta love it. (pretty uneven cartoon, though,
but when the topics range from lying robots to gay porn, ya
gotta expect that.

It could be eat, drink and be merry, because tomorrow some
crazy korean kid could blow us all away!

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Solar power putz's

The Nytimes has an article today about how solar power still doesn't
make economic sense. They use an example for a house with a system
that costs $54000, which to me seems excessive. The only way solar
power will make sense for anyone is to first cut down the demand side
of the equation, you can't solar power conventional air conditioning!

I took a class a few years ago on designing and installing PV systems,
and I learned from that class that it is possible to either be a shark
and screw people out of a lot of money and sell them things they don't
need, or you have to live like the instructor did, in a crappy 30 year old
camper. The 3rd way to live would probably entail me continuing to work
in the oilfield while selling PV on weekends.

To me, the people that installed a $54000 system are sharks. A rule of
thumb would guestimate a pv system costing $15/watt installed. So a $54000
system would be a 3.5 kilowatt system, and if New Jersey gets 4-5 usable
of sunlight per day, then they would generate about 505 kwh/month,
to try and meet the demands of a macmansion.

The better way that makes economic sense is to cut back on electricity usage,
use gas for heating, cooking and drying. Then replace all lights with florescents
that it's possible to put up with, then cut out all the thief loads and turn off
TV's, vcr's and computers that aren't in use with powerstrips. Every watt
you save on load saves you $15.

In New Jersey you could probably live without air conditioning, in Houston,
not so much. In order to try and be green in Houston you'd really need a
ground loop heat pump, which is probably the most cost effective thing
to do in areas that need aircon.

The ideal isn't just to spend money to propitiate the green gods [A la al gore]
or to live in caves without internet, but to sensibly cut back and save energy and
money, then put up a PV system that will cover the load.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Here's your sign.

Bill Whittle at Eject,Eject, Eject has a fantastic post rebutting conspiracy theories
that is like a cool wind blowing through a teenagers fetid bedroom,
his post has the cleansing power of logic to sweep away the augean
stables of stupidity that infests the modern world.

My favorite quote:

ALL of these 9/11 conspiracy sites have museum-grade idiots stating what “obviously” happens at velocities and temperatures that they are flat-out incapable of understanding. Not only are these people too stupid to understand the physics involved with what they are bloviating about…they are too stupid to realize that they are too stupid.

Too many people believe the conspiracy theories in the world today.
They use magical thinking instead of logic and science, which tells me that
when the world crashes some day, it'll be hundreds of years before it gets
back to the same level again since society is currently dismembering the
enlightenment structure that got us to this point, we're racing back to the
16th centry "if she weighs the same as a duck she's a witch" logic.

There are people that hold the stupidest viewpoints about things they know
nothing about:

Fire can't melt steel. The government is an evil nazi dictatorship, let's go
protest and shit on a flag trusting the same nazis to not arrest us. Iran is
a haven of democracy. Russia, france and china have the world's best interest
at heart, the USA only acts for the benefit of oil companies. Iraq is a war
for oil where we're willing to spend trillions of dollars just so that someday
we'll have the right to buy oil at market price.

Bill Whittle says all this a lot better than I ever could, he hits the truthers with
shotgun blasts of reality, too bad they are too deranged to read it.
I'm going to print and laminate his post to show it to people as soon
as the first flecks of foam appear on their lips; here stupid, here's your sign.