This is an “overflow” page from prior Tips pages as they had gotten so large it was taking a long time to load. Same idea, just a new set of space to put pointers to things of interest. The most immediately preceding page is: https://chiefio.wordpress.com/td/. The observant will notice that this page, tE, is really T14, but in Hexadecmal, for those prone to worry to be kept comfortable ;-)

I’ve added a generic “T” parent page where older copies of the various “Tips” pages can be found archived.

While I’m mostly interested in things having to do with:

Making money, usually via trading
Weather and climate
Quakes, Volcanoes, and other Earth Sciences
Current economic and political events
(often as those last three have impact on the first one…)
And just about any ‘way cool’ interesting science or technology

If something else is interesting you put a “tip” here.

You can also look at the list of “Categories” on the right hand side and get an idea of any other broad area of interest.

This ought not to be seen as a “limit” on what is “interesting”, more as a “focus list” with other things that are interesting being fair game as well.

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40 Responses to TE

  1. philjourdan says:

    Way cool? Probably not. But a good warning to heed. Crypto hackers have ratcheted up their game plan – http://www.networkworld.com/article/2456381/security/stealthy-ransomware-critroni-uses-tor-could-replace-cryptolocker.html#tk.rss_all

  2. Steve C says:

    A quick Broken Feature check.

    Has TE inherited the “Posts here don’t show up in Recent Comments” bug from TD? The answer is in the Recent Comments list (for a few days, by which time some of the regulars will have noticed). ;-)

  3. Steve C says:

    Don’t see any mention of phil’s post or mine. Sorry, EM …

    Critroni – Ye Gods. What could the human race accomplish if all that devilish cunning could be channelled into something positive. Time to get the live CDs out.

  4. E.M.Smith says:

    @Steve C:

    WordPress does what it does, and I’ve done what I can do.

  5. Steve C says:

    @EM – No worries, it’s just my “technician consciousness” keeping an eye on the workings of bits of tech whether I’m responsible for ’em or not. And, of course, WP is software, where the occasional “miracle” comes as standard – but you know all that … ;-)

  6. pyromancer76 says:

    If you have time — one of your topics at tallbloke –http://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2014/07/27/length-of-day-ancient-eclipse-obs-and-modern-analysis-indicate-cycles-at-planetary-frequencies/#more-18108

  7. Ian W says:

    Detail about Stonehenge shows up in aerial photographs due to dry weather on Salisbury Plain. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/environment/archaeology/11066703/Stonehenge-ghostly-outlines-of-missing-stones-appear.html

  8. Jason Calley says:

    Possible cometary or meteoric impact in Mesopotamia circa 2193BC. Don’t miss the photo of the tablet at very end of paper. http://www.scribd.com/doc/221165374/The-Sumerian-K8538-tablet-The-great-meteor-impact-devastating-Mesopotamia-By-Joachim-Seifert-and-Frank-Lemke

    Interesting paper, may even be correct!

  9. Jason Calley says:

    Very interesting paper about testing done in 2013 on the E-Cat. The authors are a team of Swedish and Italian professors, and claim that they have measured long term anomalous output and evidence of nuclear reactions.

  10. Jason Calley says:

    Hey Chiefio! You may already be familiar with this short video, but just in case, and knowing your love for bunnies, I thought I would give a link:

  11. Zeke says:

    ~Archived comment~
    October 7, 2009 at 12:32 am

    Leif Svalgaard (21:48:59) :
    E.M.Smith (21:32:02) :
    “Um, not so fast… UV levels influence plants. Water influences plants. Cloud cover influences plants. TSI is not everything.”

    UV is a part of TSI, and a small part at that. Of the 1361 W/m2 TSI, 105 W/m2 are in the UV, and most of that is in the Near UV that actually varies opposite to the solar activity. The UV that varies a lot ins the Extreme UV which does not reach the surface of…

    My point was that shifting energy from UV to, say, “yellow” would leave TSI unchanged, yet a living thing, such as me would be sunburnt under one and happy as can be under the other. The point about what does not reach the surface is interesting, but does not explain why I was able to go all summer in the garden with no sunscreen and even left my (obligatory) sun hat in the bedroom. The UV at the surface that causes sunburn was much less than in the recent past. Enough that I could feel the difference (I get a distinct ‘tingle’ as the UV dose approaches ‘1st degree burn in 20 minutes’ level of UV irradiation. After a few dozen burns, you start to notice these things ;-)

    Plants have similar issues with spectrum. For example, they reflect green and don’t use it very well and some can sunburn from too much UV. Also insufficient UV will result in seedlings that extend length until they fall over and die. I learned this attempting to grow radishes in a box in my room as a 12 year old and learned that normal window glass blocks enough UV to cause the ‘infinitely extending seedling’ problem. Greenhouse operators pay particular attention to issues of spectrum. The glazing has to let in the right mix and any “grow lights” must have the right mix. Even minor changes can result in plant death, spindly growth, failure to flower, or other problems; and each species has it’s own particular sensitivities. Some, like beans, don’t seem to care. Others, like Orchids and radish seedlings and Onions can be terribly picky.

    Onions, for example, are ‘day length sensitive’. You must pick a variety matched to your latitude and expected total hours of light of sufficient strength during your growing season. If you don’t get the “match” right, you get poor or no onions. The onion waits until the day is short enough to say “winter soon – but enough summer remains to make a bulb” to make the bulb. If that signal is at the wrong time and early, it bulbs too early and small. If that signal is too late, the onion does not bulb. So what happens with a small spectrum shift that moves the energy in the particular band that signals ‘day length’ to a different quantity?… (this, btw, has driven me nuts for years. Only in the last 2 years have I finally gotten to the point where I can grow onions with any reliability. You simply MUST match the onion to the seasonal timing to the latitude).

    And that is why TSI makes me nervous. There is a great deal that is hidden in that “average” that is of great importance to plants and other living things… especially those that are red, or trying not to become more red…

    So yes, I could easily see TSI staying of constant energy, yet a spectral shift of that constant energy leading to a crop failure or crop reduction. (Early flowering, late flowering, seedling ‘lodging’, failure to bulb, reduced growth rates, etc.) There are particular ‘incantations’ for some species that greenhouse operators need to know to get crops ‘out of season’.



    When it comes to plants the TSI is important, but so is each constituent part.

    source: http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/10/03/cycle-24-spotless-days-keeps-moving-up-the-hill-now-competitive-with-the-baby-grand-minimum/

  12. Steve C says:

    Hi EM – good to see you’re finding a few more minutes to spend with your blog, though less good to see in one of the posts that your contract ends so soon. Obviously you’re just not a big enough parasite to be allowed financial security! I wonder whether the advice in the comments to “incorporate” isn’t the best – if the corporations are making the world more corporate, sounds like a good time to be a corporation …

    I came across an economics-related link the other day which surprised me with its apparent prescience: this fellow (Larry Hannigan) seems to have worked out the basic outline of the grand scam way back in 1971, with his “The Earth Plus 5%”, a fairytale for our times. OK, it may seem a bit simplistic to you economics experts, but it makes perfectly good sense to me as a non-expert. If there’s anything seriously wrong with his story, do please say what, and cast some light into the darkness of my ignorance!

    I haven’t been around much online for a few weeks – it started off as wanting to “spend a little more time with my workshop” to play with some recently acquired testgear, and has since deteriorated into trying to fight off the Mad Landlord from Hell, who is driving me out of my home of 35+ years to “modernise” it, against all my wishes. I’m already working towards moving out of a home I loved anyway, entirely because of what their “upgrades” so far have done to it, but apparently not quickly enough for TMLFH. Funny, I’m sure an Englishman’s home used to be his castle once, before the box tickers took over.

    Plus, my usual – no, better make that “previous” for now – PC got completely trashed when Avast Anti Virus elected to turn itself into a trojan earlier this month. There are very good reasons (based on my machines having a very “non-standard” setup) why I had their software, along with everything else, set to “Do Not Update Automatically, Notify Me”, and they chose to illustrate perfectly why by completely disregarding the user’s setting and borking his machine. Unforgivable.

    On the plus side, though, you’ll be pleased to hear that this has rather forced me onto Linux – this machine (Athlon 64 3500+, 2GB, 500GB, and the excellent Pale Moon browser) is running Mint 16 (installed just before they brought out v17 with long-term support!) and proving very responsive and satisfactory. I still have a fair old mountain to climb before I feel really at home with it, though – I need a crash course in how to administer the thing so that I can do all the necessary, starting with mercilessly killing off every single tacky “animation” which wastes my CPU cycles on giving me eyestrain (I hate animation, with a red passion). I’m also hoping that I shall be able to go over to using Afterstep for my interface – my Windows machines all run Litestep as the shell, so I’m hoping to be able to aim at “similar”. (Remember, I did say my Windows setup was a bit non-standard!)

    But my “open source experience” has been very encouraging so far, and I hope the MLFH will permit me a little spare time to learn a bit more inbetween the existential skirmishes. Now, I just hope those major recent problems with bash and wget get dealt with before they do too much harm to this raw amateur … 0_0

  13. Jason Calley says:

    Just a quick sociological observation. My wonderful old wifey thing and I get a fairly large number of Halloween Trick-or-treaters each year. We both noticed that the crowd this year was the most polite we have ever seen. Please. Thank you. Even a few “Yes, Mams” (we live in the south). Our house is fairly inner-city and we normally get some rowdies passing through. Not this year. Everyone was polite. In fact, one young man even gave us a “Thank you card” that he had made up beforehand. Two other local people told me the same thing about having polite kids this year.

    Good news!

  14. jim2 says:

    This is a presentation on how many security cameras have a special password and user ID embedded in the firmware. It is really slick. But if you use one of these cameras, there is reason for concern.

  15. Sera says:

    Here’s an interesting article about minor lunar standstill and rain records for Melboune.


  16. sabretoothed says:

    AirAsia chief executive Tony Fernandes said earlier this week he had “full confidence in my fleet and crew”. Without giving details, he steered blame towards the weather, saying his airline would continue business as usual, but suggesting that climate change was making weather worse and flying riskier, particularly in the tropics.


    It’s not Airbus falling out of the sky constantly, its CLIMATE CHANGE LOLOLOL

  17. Paul, Somerset says:

    Nearby stars identified which could potentially disrupt the Oort Cloud. Possibilities that data from the European Space Agency’s Gaia craft might enable past examples of such disruption to be calculated.


  18. Jason Calley says:
  19. sabretoothed says:

    Specifically, the scientists found that the life spans of people born during a so-called “solar maximum” period–when the sun displays the greatest number of sunspots and solar flares in any given solar cycle–are about five years shorter than those of people born in a solar minimum period, when the sun is less active. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/01/09/solar-activity-life-span-study_n_6437058.html?utm_hp_ref=science

  20. sabretoothed says:

    https://www.ras.org.uk/news-and-press/2578-cosmic-radio-burst-caught-red-handed Snap! Astronomers using CSIRO’s 64-m Parkes radio telescope in eastern Australia have for the first time seen a ‘fast radio burst’ – a short, sharp flash of radio waves from an unknown source – happening live.

    This brings us a step closer to understanding the phenomenon, which astronomers worldwide are vying to explain. The finding is published today in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.


    Has to effect the climate or core ie volcanoes / earthquakes high energy electrons?

  21. sabretoothed says:

    If it is so hot, why has this not melted? This melted during the Holocene Climatic Optimum 6000-8000BP and is only 3500-4000 years old http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hans_Tausen_Iskappe

  22. Steve C says:

    As this doesn’t really fit in any of your post topic areas proper, I’ll stick it here. I’m betting that for all your excellent abilities in rough’n’ready navigation etc, there’s still that bit in you which can contemplate a really sweet piece of engineering and just think “Wow!”.

    About 25 years ago, a friend – I’d met him at University through overlaping social circles, then we discovered we’d attended the same Grammar school, he for only a couple of terms though I did the “full stretch” – gave me his wristwatch, knowing I’d rather coveted it from the first time I’d seen it. Its basic problem – a bit terminal in wristwatch terms, I think you’ll agree – was that if you left it on the table, it kept as good time as ever it had, but as soon as you strapped it to a human wrist it stopped. Hmmm …

    The reason I’d coveted it was simple. In my pre-teen and teen bedroom, reading my electronics mags, I’d read very, very enviously about the Bulova Accutron, the World’s First Electronic Watch. You can still buy them under that model name, though modern ones are of course “just another” quartz movement, albeit very, very nicely done ones. But no, this one was the original Accutron – the Tuning Fork watch.

    Reading online about it, my eyes started watering almost at once. The microengineering in there is almost unbelievable. Amalgamating from several websites, the first thing that strikes you is that the tuning fork itself – the master time reference – actually mechanically drives the divider gearchain, rather than just gating the energy from the main power source like pretty much every other watch of any sort. The drive is taken by a single tiny fibre attached to one tine of the fork, the fibre bearing on a ratchet. The ratchet wheel is 2.4mm diameter and 0.04mm thick: around the edge it has 320 teeth, 0.01mm deep. (These were the figures which made me decide instantly that I just wasn’t going in there – I know my limitations, and that’s way down beyond them!) Wow. Just, wow. And they did this microsurgery in 1960, and they were good enough to be used on all the early Apollo missions – though, sadly, the Tuning Fork Watch proper never made it to the Moon as quartz had come along by then. The electronics in there is a simple single transistor oscillator, the fork containing the drive and sense coils which are themselves tiny masterpieces.

    From there, of course, it’s “just watchmaking” down to the time/date/day of week display, albeit very nice watchmaking. Timekeeping is pretty good for mechanical, specified at less than 2 seconds a day. Anyhow, in July I bit the bullet and took it into a “proper” jeweller’s in town. According to the girls in the shop, Bulova, for all the excellence of their products, can be a “bit of a bugger” when it comes to trying to track the progress of any one item, and so it proved, as month followed month and I started worrying. The email inviting me to call in and collect it finally came on Christmas Eve morning, so I shot into town to reclaim the goodies. The cost of the repair was the second eyewatering moment, coming in at almost four hundred and fifty quid – the manageress did say that, for that kind of money, it will have been completely stripped down and rebuilt to original spec, with any necessary replacements – I just stiffened the upper lip and reached deep into my purse, that’s just the “treatment” I’d hoped for and, for the first time in decades, the WFEW was running again. Ignoring the cost (!), the perfect “Christmas present to self”.

    It’s been on my wrist – and running! – since, and has settled down to gaining a little under a second a day. And yes, it’s a Tuning Fork watch – if you hold it to your ear, it sings quietly to you at 360Hz. Weeks later, I’m still looking at it and just grinning with sheer pleasure. In an unplanned, but really rather nice, coincidence, it came back just in time for Christmas, its original owner having died, at Christmas, exactly 20 years previously, in 1994.

    So there you go. One piece of insanely sweet mechanism restored to life, and now giving huge pleasure to its new owner. And it sings to me! ;-D

  23. sabretoothed says:

    This film portrait of a towering figure in a challenging area of consciousness research was made in 1993. For the world of science, however, Professor Jahn’s pioneering studies entered forbidden territory – hence the title “Heretic”.

  24. Steve C says:

    Archery like you haven’t seen it. Watch and be astonished.

  25. E.M.Smith says:

    New Comments can go on the next page in the series:


    As this type is changing to a series of postings instead of pages (which no longer have comments show up in ‘new comments’).

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