Category Archives: Obsessions

Uber’s flying taxis

The daily reports that the Army and UT-Austin engineers will cooperate with Uber on developing “stacked rotors” for electric flying taxis. A scifi dream come true.

If all goes well, Uber plans to have a demonstration flight by 2020 and commercial operation in 2023.

“The technology exists,” said Rob McDonald, head of vehicle engineering at Uber Elevate. “It’s not science fiction. “It’s not a pipe dream…It’s such a compelling experience that people will want to experience it.”

Some might. Not me, thanks. Not after Uber’s self-driving taxi killed a woman pedestrian in Arizona.

Via 512tech

Mars landing too risky

“In “Not Close Enough, a team consisting of NASA and international astronauts sits in orbit around Mars but doesn’t get to go to the surface.  NASA has decided it’s too risky.”

The story is from a good new book Blue Collar Space by Martin Shoemaker. Wherein NASA’s fear of losing astronaut lives is explored. That fear has crippled our space program, space lawyer Laura Montgomery argues. And it makes sense. Such that our only hope to ever land on Mars or do anything else except at great expense is with commercial space, and blowhards like Elon Musk.

Via Ground Based Space Matters

Mining moon ice

For oxygen and water and rocket fuel.

“We’re at the tipping point of a new era in space commerce, where private industry, NASA and international collaborators are joining together to realize the dream of launching humanity into the solar system,” said Hunter Williams, a Colorado School of Mines researcher. “There has never been a more exciting time for furthering science, turning a profit or promoting international cooperation than right now.”

It’s ten years out, but that’s shorter than previous lunar exploration plans.

Via Space dot com

Schumer needs help

Democrat Sen. Charles Schumer, the minority leader of the U.S. Senate has gone over the falls into the deep end of the maniac pool.

“President Trump should not meet with President Putin alone,” Schumer ominously tweeted.

Sure, Chuckles. Now get yourself some mental health help, please, before you hurt yourself or someone else.

Via FoxNews

Of Owls and UFOs

I’ve never seen a UFO that wasn’t pictured or on video. Likewise I’ve never seen an owl, live, that I recall. But I was drawn to The Messengers by Mike Clelland about both, often in conjunction. The messengers are the owls and they bring mystery, before, during or after a UFO encounter.

I devoted the summer before my freshman year in high school to reading books about UFOs. Books from the public library as this was 1958 and no other sources were available. Books heartily debunked by my Air Force father who’d had some experience with Project Blue Book, a 1952 Air Force collection of thousands of sightings, mostly by pilots, mostly debunked.

The owls are another story. Clelland interviews scores of people who claim to have been abducted by the Little Gray Men and many had owl encounters at the same time. He treats them respectfully and doesn’t waste space gee-whizzing them, let alone debunking them. But it’s the owls that mystify.

Barbara Ellen had her own owl experience, though not (as far as she remembers) a UFO one. Like the others in the book, her owl’s appearance was preceded by an intense emotional time and followed, albeit months later, by profound change.

As Chelli, an Amazon reviewer, has it “It’s just the honest ‘truth’ as best as anyone can wrap their heads around, a flurry of phenomenon so pervasive, so unreal yet there it is, make of it what you will but don’t criticize ‘The Messenger’ for bringing it to you.” Indeed.

The newsroom shooting

It’s a fantasy of some journalists, to imagine what it would be like to confront a disgruntled reader/viewer with a grudge and a gun.

Some people take the news media entirely too seriously. Some of them are journalists who feel their work is a calling, rather than merely an interesting, somewhat overworked, somewhat underpaid, racket. The news biz.

Somewhat overworked are the reporter/writers. Most of the middle-manager editors are seriously overworked. And the pay varies from paltry to lucrative, depending. Mrs. Charm was one of the latter, by both measures, as for 35 years I was one of the former, so I know.

And, yes, I sometimes imagined what it would be like if a disgruntled reader/viewer walked off the elevator at my longest gig and started shooting.

For one thing s/he would have taken out people in features and the copy desk which were nearest the elevators. The people who seldom wrote anything controversial though they may have edited it. It was not hard to imagine s/he getting through the lobby with a long gun, let alone a more easily concealed handgun. Security was lax in my day.

Not that shootings such as happened this week in Maryland were rare, though they usually afflicted the post office. At any rate a newsroom shooting never happened in my day. The disgruntled certainly existed but they mainly confined themselves to impassioned rants and lawsuits.

Fortunately. But not for me. I didn’t work anywhere near the elevators. I would have been far from the action, which would have remained only a fantasy.

Via PJMedia

UPDATE:  Much is being made now by writers/editors of Trump’s old (February, 2017) remark that the “fake news media” (specifically: NYTimes, CNN, NBC News, ABC, CBS) are the “enemy of the American people.” I can see how it could be twisted by a criminal like the Annapolis guy to justify killing any media. But it was/is certainly true of the anti-Trump NYTimes and cable and otherwise broadcasters who go on and on and on 24/7 with the full-hysteria, often fake Democrat narrative.

The Mediacrats in general have always hated Republicans and now Trump especially because he fights back. When you focus on one side of the argument, because it’s your side, you’re not doing “the people” of “your community” any favor. You are, in fact, their enemy. But you shouldn’t be killed or wounded because of it.

The Open Borders Mob

Save the chil-rens. Save the chil-rens. Save the chil-rens!

What nonsense. Hollyweird. The Mediacrats. Laura Bush (!)

They all want open borders and will do anything to get them. Lie. Steal.

Stay the course, President Trump. They won’t love you even if you fold.

Via Breitbart