Spoonful of Trifles
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Have fun playing a Disney World trivia game, finding Hidden Mickeys, and learning a few fun facts!



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  • Welcome to my latest endeavor... a podcast about science and rational thought...

    5 most recent episodes, ways to listen appear below

    Time for a change

    Tue, 13 Dec 2022 20:57:00 GMT

    Sometimes plans change. Instead of an audio series, I am switching to a YouTube series. Daves Tech stories can be found here. https://youtube.com/channel/UCfquv-N6c7fxJRcgQbkMkgQ




    Evolution and the black plague

    Tue, 06 Dec 2022 20:56:00 GMT

    https://fortune.com/2022/10/19/black-death-bubonic-plague-study-dna-crohns-lupus-arthritis-genes/amp/




    Wuhan and viruses.

    Mon, 28 Nov 2022 20:54:00 GMT

    https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-62307383.amp




    Semiconductor research

    Mon, 21 Nov 2022 20:53:00 GMT

    https://fortune.com/2022/08/16/mit-gang-chen-china-spying-semiconductor-cubic-boron-arsenide-silicon-chip/amp/




    Maps

    Mon, 14 Nov 2022 20:53:01 GMT

    Map makers have an interesting challenge. I talk about maps, how they are often wrong, and how to understand a 3 dimensional world.






    Latest blog entries...


    1

    That stupid balloon

      Sun, 05 Feb 2023 16:10:00 +0000

    Someone sees a balloon in the sky and wonders what it is. They go on social media, pick up some followers. And then start tracking it through various sites and software.

    People start to get a little rambunctious and suggest that maybe it's some sort of spy thing! The horror!

    The media picks up on it a bit, but they do very little in the way of fact checking, or, I dunno, actual reporting.

    Instead they pick up on the social media posts, and talk to some people who are in no way experts on anything for an opinion.

    The principle of blowback starts. Other news outlets pick up on the already written story. It becomes a thing, without really being a thing.

    And then the real stupidity starts. Someone suggests its the Chinese spying on us. The orange menace tells us it's true. The crazy wing of the political party confirms that this must be true!

    Then the Chinese government plays right into it and says it's theirs alright!

    Predictably, the media, and conservatives, go nuts. And no one lives up to the principle of "do your own research"…

    Then there are oddly conflicting reports about where this balloon is, exactly. Was there more than one?

    But here's something for you: there's a company that claims it was theirs, and it was a weather balloon. But that gets drowned out by the breathless conspiracy-related coverage.

    And the balloon had a transponder signal. That's partially how it was being tracked. If the Chinese intended to spy on us, why would they tag it with a transponder? A US one at that.

    And in a more subtle thought, why would the Chinese - or any major player - use a balloon when satellites are in place and infinitely more effective?

    So yeah, it just must be a Chinese spy balloon thingee. Straight out of a maxwell smart episode.

    It was already out of hand. But then, our government decided to shoot it down. And China got all outraged, just to make a point.

    And the Secretary of State cancelled a visit to China in order to send a message. What message? That we’re easily duped?

    And now the discussion will go on for many months. The debris from the balloon is at sea, and the navy intends to recover it. Will they find anything? Will anyone believe whatever they find?

    This is not where we should be, as supposedly a first world, developed nation with a high gdp, is it?




    2

    Stupid is as stupid does

      Sun, 05 Feb 2023 15:33:00 +0000
    Flori-duhs governor is opposed to anything transgender related (truth be told he's opposed to many things, and he governs on personal philosophy. Dictator much?)

    He has proposed that to participate in girls/women's sports at public schools and colleges, women should submit a history of their menstrual cycle to "someone" with a goal of ensuring fairness in women's sports.

    Look, I'll grant you that a person born as a man may have certain physical attributes that are different, and perhaps they may be better at some things because of it. But not always, and the international federations have found that testosterone levels play a role, and testing for that may be sufficient.

    And what of women who, for reasons out of their control, have irregular cycles, or none at all?

    Perhaps we could have a rational debate on the topic?

    But no. He'd rather violate a woman's privacy and make them either not want to participate or let them be self conscious about their own bodies - all the while instructing all of us that we can't teach about such things or talk about such things. But he can because it serves his purpose.

    What a … douche.




    3

    Gun nuttiness

      Thu, 02 Feb 2023 10:30:00 +0000
    Florida is introducing a permitless gun carry bill. Because the legislators are idiots. 

    They decide to spit on the graves and the memories of the kids and teachers who were massacred in parkland. To disrespect the people who were mowed down at the pulse nightclub. 

    Most police forces think it's stupid. Heck, even sensible gun owners think this is a bad idea. I would argue that most Floridians are opposed to this. 

    But the gun lobby wants it, and in the culture of fear, this somehow fits in. 

    They're calling it "constitutional carry" which is absurd. They seem to disregard the part I hilight here to focus on the other words: 

    A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

    This is not about the right to own guns, it's about letting everyone just have one. No questions asked. Responsibility anyone? 

    It's likely to pass...but if you could take a moment to consider signing against it, at least we made the effort. 







    4

    Tua and his concussions.

      Mon, 30 Jan 2023 15:28:00 +0000
    Last week sometime, it was revealed that Tua won't participate in any pro bowl activities. In spite of it being non-contact types of skills and a flag football game...

    Which seems a bit odd, but would suggest that there is much more happening with him and how severe this is.

    The guy has guaranteed money, so he doesn't have to play, even though he's a competitor.

    Then his parents were interviewed. His parents made some comment about how great the dolphins are, and their son wants to continue to play. And they thanked the team ... and specifically thanked owner for his part in how this was handled.

    But...I thought the owner could have NO CONTACT with the team based on his tampering.

    So either A. Owner Ross didn't play by the rules, being the billionaire and all, and has contact with the team. Which would mean that everything the NFL says and does is mere window dressing.

    Or B. His parents are just giving us a bunch of hot air, in exchange for something of their own.

    What a mess. The nfl is incredibly stupid.




    5

    And speaking of Disney …

      Mon, 30 Jan 2023 01:45:00 +0000
    The governors plan to take away Disneys special improvement district has two motivating factors:

    1. As I've noted before, all waterways are now under his direct control. He decides how water gets distributed, tested, and even sold. Disneys was the one waterway he couldn't consolidate with all of his actions.

    I don't know what he plans to do with this control, but surely it will not be good for most of us.

    And then. 2. The aim is to change the way Disney gets taxed. Their burden will go up significantly. Florida has a large budget shortfall, why not fill a bunch of that by taxing your largest tourist business as much as you can.

    This is what "free florida" looks like apparently. He controls natural resources and tells companies what they have to do.





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