Archive for January 2014
The Lakemaid micro brewery has been forced to stop drone delivery of its beer to ice fishers. The FAA has no sense of either proportion or humor, but enjoy the video anyway.
There is an apparently serious effort underway to fund a project to search for Bigfoot using drones. I know others have used small fixed-wing aircraft to mark likely habitation for the creatures, but this project is likely to garner a large viewing audience for Spike TV.
Of a more practical nature, Louisiana Hog Control has been using a drone to assist in its efforts to thin out the feral hog population in that state, and has achieved success in doing so — an average of 60 kills a month is nothing to sneeze at, but they need to be doing 10 times that to decrease the breeding population. I won’t be surprised if similar companies appear in Texas and Arkansas,
Don’t be fooled — these feral cousins are not cute cartoon characters. Aside from the destruction of crops and fences and buildings, they can kill a man and will do so readily if cornered. What most people don’t realize is that a domesticated porker turned out into the wild will undergo physiological changes to increase its ability to survive.
In Peru, drones are speeding up sluggish survey work for archaeologists and protecting sites from squatters, builders and miners. But in the most elegant use of all, researchers at MIT and the modern dance company Pilobulus have teamed up for a performance featuring a quadrotor helicopter and a single male dancer. You will find the video clips amazing, as I’m certain the audiences did during the live performances. A new production is in the works and should be equally as interesting.
Did Curiosity see a UFO? Probably not, since I’m fairly certain it will turn out to be a meteor streaking by, but here’s an interesting question — has any rover or spacecraft ever captured a UFO on film? I don’t know the answer, but I’m sure UFO enthusiasts have claimed so.
A Chick-fil-A lives up to the corporate creed, much to the delighted gratitude of some of the motorists stranded in Birmingham.
Former President Jimmy Carter is writing yet another book, and like his previous ones, this will go unread by me. Since this one focuses on women’s rights, I’ll sure Hillary will buy a few copies.
China’s loudly touted Jade Rabbit moon rover has come to a halt a month before the end of its stated three-month mission. Considering the chines Communist propaganda machine, I think it is likely that they expected it to last at least twice that long so they could brag about its longevity, but I don’t think the USA’s Curiosity or Spirit, much less the Opportunity on Mars, have anything to worry about as of yet.
The weather in the South is awful — my truck was nearly encased in ice when I went out this morning to check on my neighbor’s house and animals. Fortunately, diesel engines have glow plugs which kick into high gear when it’s cold, so I was able to get going quickly. With six tires on a heavy vehicle, I don’t worry so much about the ice on the roads, but the build-up on the power lines means we’ll probably lose electricity sometime tonight, then be without it for a day or two. That’s part of the price you pay for living in the country instead of in a town — you’re last in line for repairs.
Since there’s a good chance I won’t be able to watch tonight’s State of the Union, I thought I’d give you some additional links. It’s fair to say that the nation’s pessimism colors our view of the event. I’m not sure everyone shares Kevin Williamson’s totally sour view, but no doubt many think of it as the chief bully using the bully pulpit. Those who still have faith in government or political leaders either haven’t been paying much attention or are dumber than dirt. I would much prefer presidents return to the original habit of merely writing a report to Congress.
As for consigliere Valerie Jarrett’s assertion that it will be an optimistic speech and all about action, who believes that other than Democrats intent on denying the reality of the trouble they are in. The truth is, even most people who listen to SOTU won’t remember any of it by next week. In fact, more than a few Democrats are likely more concerned about what the cameras on them will see than they are about the substance of the address. A look back at the success rate of the items promoted in last year’s SOTU is not encouraging for the White House.
The one thing we know is that His Oneness has just increased the minimum wage for federal contract workers by 39%, but you can rest assured that he won’t mention he has just raised your taxes again.
For fun, check out these new toys representing the winners His Oneness will select.